What the Biden era will feel like, six months in

The Biden era is well underway by now. The world — wary still at the bizarrely unrecognizable and unreliable United States of the previous four years — has begun to breathe just a touch more easily. The stolid daily rhythms of the new presidency have been established, and governing has assumed the assured — and reassuring — calm and dignity befitting the world’s indispensable nation.

All over the country, in every small town and big city, from the high desert in rural Arizona where I grew up to the Rust Belt, from the Big Apple to the Mountain West, the spell has broken. The miasma of strategic division and malign incompetence that defined the last presidency has been discarded for a more familiar leadership model practiced by every other president since I was old enough to vote, regardless of party — reliable, compassionate, adult. Boring, even.

No irrational pronouncements made at 3 a.m. without consulting anyone who might actually know what they are talking about. Oh, and that’s another thing: The new administration is populated by those who know what they are talking about —men and women who are valued for their expertise and experience rather than their ability to flatter an unsteady executive.