Here are a few more entries into president normie canon: First, Joe Biden walking to the Oval Office in a leather jacket. It was taken over the weekend as light snow enveloped D.C. “Grateful for the short commute on days like these,” he said, posting on Twitter. Another photo from the wires shows him kissing his wife on the White House lawn, on the way to Walter Reed Hospital, like he’s a soldier off to war. And a final photo, shared by a grandchild on Twitter, is of the dogs playing in snow also on the lawn. They are pretty standard, run-of-the-mill, basic political photos, meant to be as palatable as possible and communicate stability amid a continued lack of it. It’s the kind of anodyne stuff one has grown used to living in a system of constant campaigning, yet it all looks so…different after just four years.
It wasn’t that Donald Trump didn’t do political photo shoots. It’s just that the hallmark of the political photo is that they’re boring, and his were not. His were deeply strange. The big trucks. The fist pumps at inopportune times. The large stacks of paper. Trump’s aesthetic was one of farce and camp; he was always doing an impression of tough-guy political mob boss. If you only cared about how it looked, then it was hilarious.
The Trump versions were strange photos staged by a strange guy. Now we are presented with a set of normal photos staged by a normal guy. Now, the president is doing West Wing, but for Twitter. You can see the images on the Us Weekly column Stars, They’re Just Like Us, except it’s no longer “stars, they’re just like us.” It’s “politicians, they’re just like politicians.” He kisses his wife! He commutes! He dresses for the weather! Or his dogs play in the snow!
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