NYTs columnist Paul Krugman continues to impress - and to press the case - with his keen insight and synthesis. Krugman provides an intellectual balm in the face of unavailable emotional ones for being mad at the GOP - except for the rant ...
Want to relieve some of your frustration with the GOP antics on the cliff "negotiating". Take two reads of this Krugman and then sneak in a nap if you can.
The entire article is one big money quote. But, the ones below will surely pique your interest in reading the entire article.
We don't have a debt crisis ...
No, what we’re having is a political crisis, born of the fact that one of our two great political parties has reached the end of a 30-year road. The modern Republican Party’s grand, radical agenda lies in ruins — but the party doesn’t know how to deal with that failure, and it retains enough power to do immense damage as it strikes out in frustration.Oh - but wait, there's more. From over Grover - a stepped-in-it quote from the past used in this great synopsis of the current state of the Republican party.
Why the scare quotes? Because these aren’t normal negotiations in which each side presents specific proposals, and horse-trading proceeds until the two sides converge. By all accounts, Republicans have, so far, offered almost no specifics.
It’s a very peculiar situation. In effect, Republicans are saying to President Obama, “Come up with something that will make us happy.” He is, understandably, not willing to play that game. And so the talks are stuck.
Arguably more important in conservative thinking, however, was the notion that the G.O.P. could exploit other sources of strength — white resentment, working-class dislike of social change, tough talk on national security — to build overwhelming political dominance, at which point the dismantling of the welfare state could proceed freely. Just eight years ago, Grover Norquist, the antitax activist, looked forward cheerfully to the days when Democrats would be politically neutered: “Any farmer will tell you that certain animals run around and are unpleasant, but when they’ve been fixed, then they are happy and sedate.”Jay Carney talks about some of the same things, but Krugman is becoming a master at fighting without interfering anger - just daggers of pure insight.
O.K., you see the problem: Democrats didn’t go along with the program, and refused to give up. Worse, from the Republican point of view, all of their party’s sources of strength have turned into weaknesses. Democratic dominance among Hispanics has overshadowed Republican dominance among southern whites; women’s rights have trumped the politics of abortion and antigay sentiment; and guess who finally did get Osama bin Laden.
President Obama is handling the negotiations well and has me cautiously optimistic. Professor Krugman's dose-of-reality article, though, sees continued GOP-instigated trouble ahead.