Build Back Maybe

An Ink retrospective

Will we squander the moment again?

As Washington toys with our collective future this week, I wanted to send out a package of The Ink’s and my coverage of the Biden era and some of its big questions.

This was the hope of an erstwhile skeptic.

This was Senator Chuck Schumer’s promise that the Democrats had really changed, really, truly changed, that they got it now.

Here, in Mariana Mazzucato and in Stephanie Kelton, was some of the new economic thinking guiding the new administration. Here were new ideas on the rise.

Here was the coming together of progressives who had changed the conversation and a historically moderate president who listened and had a knack for coalitionism.

Here, in my last conversation with the late Richard Trumka, was the feeling that maybe, just maybe, the Reagan consensus was breaking.

Here were warnings that, if progress were to come to America, the Senate would have to change — and promises, maybe, kind of, sort of, to change it.

Here were discussions about how our movements need to talk to people if they are to have a chance at transformational change.

Here was a historic proposal to bring billionaires into the taxation system, and a plea by its architect for basic fairness in America.

And here was a heartfelt reminder of the stakes.

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty