How many people still read books?
WTF isn’t Biden and company then sending out excerpts of the book ‘The Last Politicain’ to help American voters and even the media get a better look at a guy who does NOT like to show off in public like the guy he beat for his current job?
In June 2021, perhaps for the last time, President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin met face to face. They talked for three hours, emerging to tell reporters that there had been no breakthroughs; Biden told reporters that he’d handed Putin a list of 16 examples of critical U.S. infrastructure, warning him of consequences if any came under cyberattack.
According to “The Last Politician,” the Biden-in-power book that Franklin Foer published last week, the president spoke more ominously than he’d let the public know. “Put yourself in my shoes,” Biden told Putin. “I mean, with the attacks on our infrastructure. Imagine if something happened to your oil infrastructure…”
Biden let “the thought hang in the air,” and reading it now, it hangs even heavier. One year later, as America spent millions to defend Ukraine against Russian invasion, the CIA learned of a Ukrainian plot to damage the Nord Stream pipelines with underwater bombs.
Foer’s book, the most far-reaching study of the Biden White House so far, presents an aging president who’s nonetheless fully engaged in the job, stumbling more when he loses his temper — blurting out Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s private negotiating position, telling a Democrat who resists the Build Back Better package that she’s “the opposition” — than when he loses his train of thought.
But this story is so distant from most coverage of Biden, especially on the right, that it reads like alternate history. To many voters, Biden is presented as too frail to carry out even basic duties, leaving his aides to secretly run the country in his stead. In the first books to document his presidency, the picture is of a leader who sounds shaky in public, but is the dominant force in his White House.
Foer told Semafor that he “wanted to write a book about governance” after the Trump years, and he got one: Biden, he found, “buries himself in details” and “takes technocratic charge” of issues. “The Last Politician” acknowledges that Biden “would occasionally admit that he felt tired,” and that his “advanced age was a hindrance” when he blanked on a name or kept a light schedule. But it’s a bit part in the overall story — and his staff is worried more about his life-long tendency to wander off script than how age has affected his faculties.
“It’s weird; people are always saying, ‘well, it’d be great if we saw more Biden,’” Foer said. “He gives public speeches almost every single day. He sticks to his message. He doesn’t say anything insane. He does have kind of a low-key style in these speeches, but I don’t think that’s abnormal for a president. It’s just abnormal in the aftermath of Trump.”
Biden’s status as the oldest-ever president has defined not just his re-election — it’s by far his biggest weakness — but the way his White House is analyzed daily in the choose-your-own-media landscape….
- In The New York Times, economist Adam Tooze reviewed “The Last Politician” as a “thin but telling” argument for the president’s ability to ride a wave; his domestic legislative success is “as much a product of congressional initiative as it is of the White House.”
- In The Bulwark, Mona Charen advises Biden’s handlers to let him talk. “People have come to believe that he is in sharp mental decline. When you see him in a Q&A, it’s clear that he isn’t.”