by Woodland Crisfield
No matter which party is in control, the material conditions of regular Americans seem to remain stagnant. (Photo: Zack Lewkowicz.)
As former Vice President, Joe Biden, crossed the 270 electoral vote threshold on Saturday, November 7, a mere four days after election day, the streets of nearly every major city were lined with people celebrating the news.
In Washington, DC, both 16th street and “Black Lives Matter” Plaza had a party atmosphere with music playing and people dancing with joy. The scene resembled places where dictators had been overthrown. There was a sense that after four years of disastrous policy outcomes along with growing social division, the nation would finally return to normal.
But what many Washington insiders and the well-off have considered to be “normal” has failed working Americans for decades. The crux of their criticisms of President Trump was not so much his disastrous policies, such as the continuation of endless wars or the reshaping of America’s judiciary with far right extremist judges. What bothered the insiders and well-to-do was Trump’s unrefined persona and inability to act like a president.
What is perhaps even more puzzling is the candidate who was elected as Trump’s successor. Many regard Joe Biden as the epitome of one who would promote the old political status quo that has benefited corporations and the wealthy at the peril of regular Americans for so long.
His acceptance speech as President-Elect was largely devoid of any concrete policy proposals but was filled with personal stories and overused political cliches: “I pledge to be a president who seeks not to divide but unify, who doesn't see red states and blue states only sees the United States.”
In a Biden administration, the nation can expect a continuation of the decadent policies from previous administrations. His record indicates as such. That prompted many to opt for an outsider like Trump, but not for a president who would keep sending out mean tweets to those he disagreed with.
Biden voted for the Iraq War, which killed at least 200,000 Iraqi civilians and as of July 19, 2020 a total of 4,583 American service members. In addition to that, the Congressional budget office estimates that the war will cost over 2.4 trillion in tax payer dollars when all is said and done.
As Vice President, Biden was part of an administration that penned the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal that according to the Wall Street Journal would have increased the U.S trade deficit in manufacturing to 558 billion dollars in 5 years, as well as outsourcing a million manufacturing jobs every three years.
As a Senator from Delaware, he authored the 1994 crime bill which accelerated the mass incarceration of individuals for longer periods of time and incentivized states to build more prisons.
After four years of regressive governing under President Trump, the desire to go back to what was once considered normal is certainly understandable, but a truthful acknowledgement of what the nation will get from a Biden administration is necessary.