He Can’t be Serious

Published August 8, 2015

As I’ve noted before, picking on The New York Times is so easy that I really should stop doing it, but sometimes it just has to be done. Especially when the author is Paul Krugman, the man whose so-called Nobel Prize in Economics apparently makes him an expert on all things political, in particular the Republican Party. Take Krugman’s Friday, August 7, 2015, column (please!).

Entitled “From Trump on Down, the Republicans Can’t Be Serious,” the column takes as its thesis that “one of our two major parties has gone off the deep end,” by which of course Krugman means the Republican.

Krugman’s “evidence”? His assessment of the credibility of the ten declared candidates for the Republican Party nomination for President who appeared in Fox Television’s prime-time “debate” the night before.

“Judge them by their positions as opposed to image,” he says, “and what you have is a lineup of cranks.” “As I said,” he adds ominously, “this is no accident.” In the fairy-tale land between Princeton, New Jersey, and 229 West 43rd Street in New York that Paul Krugman inhabits, the Republican Party “has no room for rational positions on many major issues” and is dominated by “[c]rank economics, crank science, [and] crank foreign policy.

Never mind that it’s the national Democratic Party’s Ponzi-scheme economics that have saddled the nation with unsustainable Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security burdens that threaten to bankrupt the nation. Never mind that the only way the so-called Affordable Care Act – wholly owned by John Roberts and the Democratic Party – can creak along at all is by fining people if they don’t buy into it. Never mind, too, that it was Democratic President Jimmy Carter’s Community Reinvestment Act, as interpreted by Democrat Bill Clinton’s Boston Fed, that created the housing bubble that burst in 2008, nearly taking the entire world economy down with it.

Never mind that it’s Democrat Barack Obama’s blind adherence to the hubristic – and unscientific – notion that humans are so powerful we can control the earth’s natural warming and cooling cycles by putting coal plants out of business and stopping humans from exhaling carbon dioxide, otherwise known as plant food.

Never mind that it was a Democratic administration (the current one, in case you’re wondering) that unilaterally surrendered the gains made by the surge in Iraq, abandoned Afghanistan to the Taliban, backed down when Syria crossed a chemical weapons red line, stood idly by as Putin’s Russia invaded Crimea, let ISIS grow on its watch, and has cravenly capitulated to what even David Brooks has called the “fanatical, hegemonic, hate-filled regime” of Iran.

No, according to Krugman, it’s Republicans who don’t understand economics, science, or foreign policy.

Why, just as Donald Trump (an opportunist, hardly a lifelong Republican) has questioned whether Barack Obama was born in the United States, says Krugman, Wisconsin Republican Governor Scott Walker has said he “isn’t sure” whether the president is a Christian.

Yet if Krugman has ever read the Constitution, he should know that Article VI provides that “no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.” If Mr. Obama’s religion is irrelevant to his qualification for office, then so – certainly – is Mr. Walker’s lack of opinion as to what religion, if any, Mr. Obama might practice.

Krugman next labels Donald Trump’s declared intention to deport all illegal immigrants as “definitely extreme” and says, inexplicably, that it would require “deep violations of civil liberties.” He then equates it with Rand Paul’s joining the alleged “witch hunt against Planned Parenthood.”

It’s certainly true that the very numbers involved in deporting 11 to 30 million people would, by the very numbers involved, be “extreme,” but how is believing that life begins at conception any more “extreme” than believing in abortion on demand? As a Libertarian, Rand Paul of course respects an individual’s right to right to life, in contrast to Planned Parenthood, which admittedly performs 330,000 abortions per year at up to 16 to 18 weeks, even if its trafficking in fetal organs turns out to be legal.

After deriding Trump’s alleged “know nothingism,” Krugman then labels Marco Rubio a “climate change denier,” lumping the two together. Presumably this means Krugman believes the complicated science of climate is settled, unlike any other branch of science, including psychiatry, which until 1974 labeled homosexuality a mental illness.

In conclusion, Krugman says, with respect to the eventual Republican candidate for President, “[a]t most, we’ll see a return to normal hypocrisy, the kind that cloaks radical policies and contempt for evidence in conventional-sounding rhetoric. And that won’t be an improvement.”

No; it won’t. That would be a continuation of the current Democratic administration and its policies.