Joe Biden won’t go to the border, but the border is coming to him. The Northern Irish border, that is.
On Wednesday, Biden, Kamala Harris (pronouns: she/her) and Nancy Pelosi marked St Patrick’s Day by talking with Irish politicians from both sides of their border. Afterwards, the Irish prime minister, Micheál Martin, thanked Pelosi for her ‘continued support’ on Brexit.
It’s bordering on the ridiculous. Biden’s administration refuses to admit that it has a moral and humanitarian crisis on its southern border, but it makes time to create problems on the border between two close allies, Britain and the Republic of Ireland.
The administration insists it isn’t taking sides on Brexit, but the truth is that it already has. It has sided with the European Union — not from coherent policy or longsighted wisdom, but from a petty determination to do the opposite of whatever Donald Trump did. It has sided, then, with an anti-democratic technocracy, and against democratic self-determination, from the highest principle it can imagine.
That knee-jerk NeverTrump impulse drives Biden’s emissaries to beg and bribe Tehran to reenter negotiations, which would allow the US to return to the Iran Deal — which would let the Iranian regime have nuclear weapons in 2025.
Closer to Nancy Pelosi’s home, the anti-Trump reflex led the Biden administration to undo Trump’s immigration restrictions; cease returning unaccompanied minors across the border; and promise to create ‘pathways to citizenship’ — also known as handing out passports — to illegal residents.
You didn’t have to be a coyote to know what would happen next. An uncontrollable surge of migrants: the highest numbers in 20 years. Mass auditions for citizenship in which groups of would-be Democratic voters take the knee for the cameras in ‘Biden, let us in’ t-shirts. Thousands of children held in the temporary prisons that, under the previous administration, Democrats called ‘concentration camps’ and harbingers of orange fascism. Where is AOC now, when the children really need her?
This politics of gesture and sentiment is a parody of responsibility. As the new administration is big on equality and even bigger on equity, it must be admitted that the Republicans are no better, and bear an equal share of the blame for disconnecting policy from presentation, ideas from image.
Joe Biden won last November’s election by the singular feat of not being Donald Trump. He gave a passable impersonation of a reasonable adult, albeit one well into the sundowning phase. His selling point was that he is the dumbest guy in the room.
Republicans fear that Biden is a hologram president, a cover for the return of the Obama machine and the implementation of socialism, open-borders and transgender sports. They have it only half right.
Yes, Biden is about as much use as a leprechaun on a basketball court. Yes, he’s trading on his centrist credibility even as he declares himself in favor of gender-transitioning children and whatever other fashionable nonsense his speechwriters put under his nose. And yes, Biden is covering for the Democrats’ radicals and race-baiters.
But the emerging signature of this presidency isn’t radicalism and ruthlessness: it’s incompetence and unreality. These are always found out, even when most of the media pretends not to see it. The way the world now is, they’ll be exposed sooner than the complacent Democrats think.
The world already sees it. The migrants who know this is as good a chance as they’ll get see it. The allies who know that America has become fundamentally unserious, a loose cannon, see it. The enemies and rivals who can’t believe their luck that Biden is the President see it. And now, within the symbolic hundred days, Americans see it on their southern border.