When It’s Good to be Bland and Boring

“If you’re in an area impacted by the Coronavirus, it’s essential that you listen to state and local authorities for guidance … I want to say ‘thank you’ to the American people. Thank you for your cooperation.”

— Vice President Mike Pence, March 25, 2020

The first time I saw Mike Pence, he was giving a speech at the Jewish Community Center of Indianapolis. He was a Congressman at the time, and his speech was about the alliance between the United States and Israel.

He impressed me as a bland, boring Indiana politician. He wasn’t very exciting, but he was stable. He wasn’t ideologically conservative, but he had common sense.

Since then, I’ve never had any reason to change that assessment.

And that’s a good thing.

President Trump is a showman and a salesman. He’s a perfect fit for today’s reality-TV culture, and for the no-rules Thunderdome of 2020 American politics. He’s entertaining and sometimes obnoxious, but he’s never bland and boring.

Hence, Pence.

Yes, America needs someone like Trump to fight against the relentless attacks on our country and our civilization.

But we also need someone like Pence to provide a steadying hand, a calm voice, a measured response.

That’s why I’m glad Pence is Vice President. And I hope he’s elected president in 2024.

When the moneyed elites yell at President Trump today, he yells back. It’s a good show. And a lot of people who crave attention, get it. :: cough :: Alyssa Milano :: cough ::

When the moneyed elites yell at President Pence in 2025, he’ll answer calmly and politely. He knows that, as the Bible says, “a soft answer turneth away wrath.” It will be boring as hell. And the attention-seekers will go away frustrated.

“Bland and boring America” is going to be wonderful. I can hardly wait!

Check out my book Why Sane People Believe Crazy Things: How Belief Can Help or Hurt Social Peace. Kirkus Reviews called it an “impressively nuanced analysis.”

About N.S. Palmer

N.S. Palmer is an American mathematician.
This entry was posted in Bible, Political Science, Psychology, Society and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to When It’s Good to be Bland and Boring

  1. J P says:

    The only time I was disappointed with Pence was when Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act came under heavy fire when he was Governor. Although he supported it, his public interviews were go guarded against causing offense that he made it look like there was no principled case to make for it at all.

    But I guess there are worse faults in politicians.


    • N.S. Palmer says:

      I was disappointed about his performance in the RFRA morality play but not surprised.

      You already know this, but for the benefit of other readers who only heard about it from the fake news media: The law did not allow businesses to discriminate against gays merely by claiming a religious exemption. It enabled businesses, if sued, to raise sincerely-held religious belief as a defense. The court might or might not accept it as a defense, depending on the situation.

      Pence thought that he’d signed an inoffensive, middle-of-the-road law like that passed by other states. And that’s exactly what it was. But people with money and power decided to make an example of Indiana, and he found himself denounced as a second coming of Dr. Mengele who wanted to herd gays into concentration camps. He folded like a cheap suit, because he’s not ideological, never imagined the law would hurt anyone (as it wouldn’t have), and was taken by surprise. The “gay wedding cakes” issue is so trivial that activists never, ever target Muslim bakeries, and nobody asks why because everybody knows why. A staunch conservative would have stood on principle — Constitutional principle, having nothing to do with gays — but Pence is just a common-sense guy, and corporate behemoths like Apple were threatening to hurt the state. So he backed off.

      To be anything is to be something. That applies to people just like it applies to trees, cars, and stars. We all have traits that are helpful in some situations and unhelpful in others. I try to accept people as they are and figure out how best to work with that. Hence, Pence.


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