April 20, 2021

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Editorial: Biden must first settle inside

Biden's task is undoubtedly daunting.

US President Biden held his first press conference after taking office on March 25.

 He vowed to urge China to act in accordance with international rules, and to strengthen the United States to ensure the upper hand in the competition with China and prevent China from surpassing the United States to become the world’s strongest country. Biden wants to protect the US’s leading international status. From the perspective of safeguarding national interests, it is understandable. However, the so-called things must rot first, and then worms will grow. The strength of the US’s international status depends fundamentally on domestic unity. Biden came to power amidst the fierce election controversy, knowing that the internal differences in the United States are the key to international competitiveness. Therefore, if he wants to ensure that the United States continues to become the world’s strongest country, the top priority is to resolve domestic conflicts first.

As a political veteran, Trump was unexpectedly elected President of the United States in 2016, which is regarded as a major outbreak of American populism. But the freezing of three feet is not a day’s cold. American voters at the grass-roots level have witnessed how after the victory of the Cold War, through embracing the strategy of economic globalization, the American manufacturing industry has been emptied step by step and a large number of jobs have been transferred to emerging economies, leading to middle class The class shrinks; and after grabbing huge benefits from the financialization of the American economy, it triggered the Wall Street subprime mortgage crisis due to its own greed, and then retired completely, completely not responsible for the disaster that destroyed a large number of Americans’ wealth, and finally gave birth to the anti-elite and Trumpism against globalization.

Therefore, the nature of American political division is the result of the decoupling of the broad ruling elite from the interests of the people under the rule. This result directly led to the disparity between the rich and the poor in society and reflected in politics, the so-called “99% vs. 1%” populism emerged. What makes the problem better is the response of the American elite. The fundamental problem in the United States is undoubtedly the weakening of fairness and justice, but the elites, instead of starting with class contradictions, direct the issue of fairness and justice to the divergent path of race and gender equality, creating racist disputes and gender identity politics for no reason, and further aggravating social opposition.

This new antagonism is manifested in two-party politics. The traditional distinction between left and right is becoming increasingly blurred, and parliamentary democracy has been reduced to “negative politics.” It only depends on the position and does not ask right or wrong. This makes it impossible to develop many urgent problems, including a large number of disrepaired infrastructure, swelling deficits and national debt, low national basic education standards, and of course the core disparity between the rich and the poor and the associated class contradictions. In addition to these long-term issues that will affect US national power, there are also how to deal with illegal immigrants, and even to deal with the coronavirus epidemic that is destroying the US economy. It is difficult to see the government and the opposition have the ability to act.

What makes the problem worse is that due to the controversy of election fraud last year, a large number of American voters did not recognize the legitimacy of the Biden administration. Although Biden himself has shown himself in the image of a moderate, but because of his age and weakness and lack of sufficient political appeal, the radical leftists in the Democratic Party are ready to move, betting that Vice President He Jinli will be in office and implement the great welfare and greenness that the Republican Party strongly opposes. It is extremely unlikely that policies will heal political disputes in the short term. In addition, Trump and his supporters, who lost the election and stepped down, did not give up and do not rule out that they will regroup in the 2024 presidential election.

It is not difficult to imagine that, in the face of such severe domestic political differences, Biden will not be easy to unite Americans to the outside world. Although the current view of China as a threat is the general consensus of the two parties and society, the key to how to deal with the challenge lies in the strength of the United States and its accompanying international reputation. If allies lack confidence in the continuity, ability, and willpower of US foreign policy, “America is back” may only be a moving slogan. Compared with arbitrarily and unreasonably invading Iraq after 9/11, the United States today lacks the corresponding power.

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Biden’s task is undoubtedly daunting. In the face of many difficult domestic problems, Biden has to show the political courage to turn enemies into friends on the one hand, and on the other hand, he has to break the existing ideological disputes and set out to resolve the class contradictions that plague American politics. The establishment of political trust does not happen overnight, and the scariest thing in American society now happens to be basic mutual trust. “Since ancient times, there has been death, and the people cannot stand without trust.” If Biden can rebuild American mutual trust after he takes over, the United States will certainly be able to face the world with confidence and avoid the fate of being surpassed by other countries.

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