看強生自作孽令人愉悅 The Delightful Implosion of Boris Johnson
There isn't much good news in the world these days, so it's worth taking time to appreciate the delightful implosion of soon-to-be former Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
His 2019 landslide victory against the hapless Jeremy Corbyn of the Labour Party seemed to be ushering in a long period of right-wing dominance. Johnson, said The Economist, "is well placed to become one of the most powerful prime ministers in modern times." Less than three years later, undone by scandal, incompetence and the rebellion of his own party, he's announced plans to step aside once a new conservative leader can be found.
The shocking success of the Brexit referendum, the cause Johnson eventually rode to power, presaged Trump's even more shocking presidential victory. Both shared a contempt for truth and the norms of their respective governments.
But, of course, Britain and the United States are very different countries. British people are still evidently capable of being shocked by officials' sexual harassment and shameless untruths, even when those officials are on their side. Their country is not heavily armed and does not have a powerful faction that regularly threatens violence. Britain still appears to have some minimal social agreement about acceptable political behavior.
That was partly because Britain's lockdown was much stricter than ours and applied to the whole country; unlike Trump's partying in 2020, Johnson's violated rules his government was imposing on others. Still, to be really furious at hypocrisy, you have to have some expectation that people in power will follow the rules. And to be shamed by the revelation of hypocrisy, as the Tories seemed to be, you have to accept that the standards applied to others also apply to you.
Johnson's career is ending, at least for now, the way Trump's should have ended — with public revulsion leading his own party to oust him. Like Trump, Johnson initially wanted to cling to power when it was no longer feasible; unlike with Trump, there was never a prospect of him summoning an armed mob. Watching Johnson's fall after living through Trump is like chasing a slasher film with a cozy mystery. Both may be murder stories, but only one has a reassuring order to it.
At 79, Biden Is Testing the Boundaries of Age and the Presidency 年屆八旬 拜登挑戰美國總統年齡界限
Biden, at 79, Shows Signs of Age And Aides Fret About His Image.
As Biden insists he plans to run for a second term, his age has increasingly become an uncomfortable issue for him, his team and his party.
Just a year and a half into his first term, Biden is already more than a year older than Ronald Reagan was at the end of two terms. If he mounts another campaign in 2024, Biden would be asking the country to elect a leader who would be 86 at the end of his tenure, testing the outer boundaries of age and the presidency. Polls show many Americans consider Biden too old, and some Democratic strategists do not think he should run again.
His energy level, while impressive for a man of his age, is not what it was, and some aides quietly watch out for him. He often shuffles when he walks, and aides worry he will trip on a wire. He stumbles over words during public events, and they hold their breath to see if he makes it to the end without a gaffe.
Biden has said questions about his fitness are reasonable to ask even as he reassures Americans that he is in good shape. Even for some admirers, though, the question is whether that will last six more years.
"I do feel it's inappropriate to seek that office after you're 80 or in your 80s," said David Gergen, a top adviser to four presidents. "I have just turned 80, and I have found over the last two or three years I think it would have been unwise for me to try to run any organization. You're not quite as sharp as you once were."
"Right now, there's no evidence that the age of Biden should matter one ounce," said S. Jay Olshansky, a longevity specialist at the University of Illinois Chicago who studied the candidates' ages in 2020. "If people don't like his policies, they don't like what he says, that's fine, they can vote for someone else. But it's got nothing to do with how old he is."
Still, Olshansky said it was legitimate to wonder if that would remain so at 86. "That's the right question to be asking," he said. "You can't sugarcoat aging. Things go wrong as we get older, and the risks rise the older we get."