The Corner

Politics & Policy

Right on Cue, the President’s Mistakes Are Our Fault Again

President Joe Biden reacts as he speaks about Hurricane Henri and the evacuation of Afghanistan in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, August 22, 2021. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

You can tell a Democrat is president, because we’re starting to see pieces blaming “us” for his mistakes. In The Atlantic a couple of weeks ago, Tom Nichols wrote that “Afghanistan Is Your Fault.” “American citizens,” Nichols suggested, “will separate into their usual camps and identify all of the obvious causes and culprits except for one: themselves.” Today, Max Boot makes the same argument in the Post. “Who’s to blame for the deaths of 13 service members in Kabul?” he asks. Answer: “We all are.”

This is of a piece with the tendency of journalists and historians to start muttering about how the presidency is “too big for one man” when the bad president in question is a Democrat. Under these terms, Republicans just aren’t up to the job, while Democrats are the victims of design or modernity or of the public being feckless. Last year, coronavirus was Trump’s fault. Now, it’s the fault of Republican governors and the unvaccinated (well, only some of the unvaccinated).

Still, this has happened pretty quickly with Joe Biden. Usually, it takes a couple of years before the press starts to sound like a bunch of hippies sitting around a fire saying, “you know, in a sense, you’re me and I’m you, and all of us are we — and so when the president makes a mistake, it’s really, like, the universe making a mistake, isn’t it? And, y’know, we’re in the universe, so we are the presidency. That’s democracy, man.”

Recommended

The Dossier Deceit

The Dossier Deceit

John Durham’s latest indictment reinforces that the Russian collusion conspiracy was built on a preposterous foundation.

The Latest

Cracked, &c.

Cracked, &c.

On a cancellation of The Nutcracker; Russia’s threat to Ukraine; the screwiness of the Women’s March; the bravery of J.K. Rowling; and more.