We Have Entered a New Screwball Phase


Peggy Noonan had a good article in the Wall Street Journal this week about, among other things, two departures: Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper, and Joe Biden as a presidential candidate.

On Harper’s successor:

[Incoming Canadian prime minister] Justin Trudeau has been a snowboard instructor, schoolteacher, bartender, bouncer, speaker on environmental and youth issues, and advocate for avalanche safety. Sensing “generational change” and gravitating toward “a life of advocacy,” he entered politics and served two terms in Parliament. He has been head of the Liberal Party two years. He is handsome, has a winning personality, exhibited message discipline during the campaign, and is a talented dancer. There’s a sense we in the West have entered a new screwball phase.

On Biden and old-school Democrats:

Joe Biden’s decision not to run for president left me sad. He would have enlivened things. He has always reminded me of what Democrats were like when I was a kid—kind of normal and earthy and fun. They did not spend their time endlessly accusing people of being sexist-racist-homophobic-gender-biased persons of unchecked privilege. They would have thought that impolite.

  1 comment for “We Have Entered a New Screwball Phase

  1. -----
    31 Oct 2015 at 8:10 am

    Three glaring omissions.

    First, Trudeau is not some guy off the street that just happened to be a one-hit wonder elected to high office. He comes from a family with deep roots in Canadian politics.

    Second, while Biden may be a old-time Democrat, he has few if any counterparts on the other side of the aisle. Republicans are at least a dozen cement mixers shy of old-line Republicans such as Dwight Eisenhower (supporter of New Deal policies) and Barry Goldwater (famously warned what would happen if the Religious Right ever gained control of the Republican Party).

    Third, it might be worth remembering that American voters once elected a Hollywood actor as President famous for not remembering what he did and wandering off into fantasy land when he got off script.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

%d bloggers like this: