TOKYO -- Ferdinand Marcos Jr. marked his landslide Philippine election win last week by praising his father and namesake for teaching him "the value and meaning of true leadership." It was a striking comment on a man who ran a dictatorship accused of thousands of killings and stealing up to $10 billion.
It didn't stop U.S. President Joe Biden offering Marcos Jr. his congratulations the following day. On one level, this was a standard compliment to a fellow elected leader. On another, it revealed a fundamental flaw in Biden's central framing of global politics as a good-and-evil battle between democracies and autocracies.