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I hope you won’t consider today’s blog post to be a full-scale invasion. It’s more like a minor incursion…

Oh, Joey, Joey, Joey…what are we going to do with you?

What we had there was an afternoon of Uncle Joe being Uncle Joe. And that wasn’t completely a bad thing. Unlike his predecessor, Biden had the patience, stamina and balls to take tough questions, solo, for two hours. Unlike his predecessor, his every utterance was not a tribally divisive and vitriolic dog whistle. There was at least an attempt to unite, something that would never even have crossed Trump’s mind. Unlike his predecessor, Biden’s responses included at least a few complete sentences.

So, yes, I do think we are incrementally better off than we were a year ago, if only because we now have a chief executive who is a sentient human being.

That’s progress. But it’s far from perfection.

There are gaffes. There are lapses. There is naivete. And, yes, there are misstatements and factual untruths. Not nearly of the magnitude or malignancy of the defeated former president, but not inconsequential, either.

But mostly there are questions of competence.

Understand, my core problem with Trump is that he was incompetent and completely unequipped, unprepared and unqualified to be president. All of the character flaws merely exacerbated his core incompetence.

Biden’s incompetence is coming from a better vector, but is only slightly less unsettling. And that dichotomy was on full display for two hours Wednesday.

He essentially opened a door for Putin. His answers to economic questions were unsatisfying. He further (and unnecessarily) muddied the waters with respect to future election integrity. He has not fully acknowledged that his administration’s COVID messaging has been confounding, confusing, contradictory and borderline incoherent.

And he has yet to own his part of the Afghanistan fiasco.

The question, as it was in the previous administration, is competence. But at least we have taken “overtly evil” out of the equation.

It’s the anniversary of Biden’s inauguration. I celebrate it only in the sense that it marked the failure of an attempted coup.

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Paul's Bio

I clearly have the attention span of your median fruit fly.Look! Airplane!

Sorry. I’m back.

It’s both a curse and a blessing. I’ve never bought this stuff about, “He who dies with the most toys wins.” But I do think that a wide range of life experiences helps us grow as people, and helps us better relate to other people. I’ve been fortunate. And I am beyond grateful.

I show up on time. I go like hell. I’m a good listener. I hold myself accountable. I own my mistakes. And I have a natural and an insatiable curiosity. I’m never afraid to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t. But then I try to find out.

The flip side is I’m a lousy ballroom dancer and my clothes sometimes fit me funny.

Stuff matters to me. I care. But while I take that stuff seriously, I try hard to never take myself seriously. As a result, I have sometimes been told, “Paul, it’s hard to tell when you’re serious and when you’re just having some fun. Which is it? Serious or fun?”

My answer is “yes.” But I think that is a legitimate criticism. I promise I’m going to work on that.

This has been the quickest and strangest half-century I’ve ever experienced. During that period, I’ve been afforded amazing opportunities in news and sports journalism across all platforms. I have taught wonderful students at the high school and collegiate level. Always, I learned more from them than they did from me. I’ve been a high school administrator. I spent ten seasons as a high school varsity football coach. I’ve been an advertising executive. I’ve hosted nationally syndicated television entertainment shows. In maybe the biggest honor I ever received, I was selected by NASA to be “Chet The Astronaut” for the “Land The Shuttle” simulator at Space Center Houston. (All I can say there, is “Do as I say, not as I do.” I put that thing in the Everglades more often than not.) Most recently, I just wrapped up a decade as a television news director, during which time our teams distinguished themselves in holding the powerful accountable, achieving both critical and ratings success.

What does all that mean? It means I am profoundly grateful. It also means I’m ready for “next.” So here we are. Radically Rational. It’s an idea I woke up with in 2017. I scribbled “Radically Rational” on a piece of notebook paper and used a magnet to stick it on our refrigerator. I saw it every day, and it just would not leave me alone.

I am second in charge at Radically Rational, LLC. My wife, Jo (also known as BB), is the president. Clearly, I have failed in my attempt to sleep my way to the top of this organization.

I hope you will learn that I’m loyal as a Labrador. But I will admit that this doggie can bite every now and then. My promise to you? I will show up on time. I will go like hell. I will listen to you earnestly and attentively. I will hold myself accountable. I will never be the least bit hesitant to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t.

But then I’ll try to find out. Let’s do it.