In this column, he discusses a couple of points that I have felt all along (though I am not nearly as eloquent as he is).
Republicans claim to have the answer: slash spending and cut taxes. What they hope voters won't notice is that that's precisely the policy we've been following the past couple of years. Never mind the Democrat in the White House; for all practical purposes, this is already the economic policy of Republican dreams.Exactly. I have always wondered why they were so vociferous in their complaints about how extreme this President was, how he was dragging us into socialism, how he was destroying our great country. Was it because he wanted to pass healthcare reform? (And did pass a watered-down version of it.) Was it because his name was so foreign? Was it because he was black?
Because, as far as I can see, apart from HCR, I can see a Republican President having much the same policies.
So the Republican electoral strategy is, in effect, a gigantic con game: It depends on convincing voters that the bad economy is the result of big-spending policies that President Barack Obama hasn't followed (in large part because the GOP wouldn't let him), and that our woes can be cured by pursuing more of the same policies that have already failed.This is the main point for me. The President has spent so much of his time over the past four years trying to reach out to the Republicans that many people haven't seen the opposition for what they are really doing. This country is having a serious economic crisis and what has the Republican strategy been since Day One of the Obama Administration? To make sure he was a one-term President. They are so focused on the political priorities, they forgot that they were sent there to represent the American people. They are sacrificing our well-being, for their political futures.
The Republicans' actions do not bear close scrutiny. Remember how often they say that Obama was the reason our credit rating was downgraded? Think back to that time, what happened? The Republicans were refusing to raise the debt ceiling. Congress was gridlocked. That was when the credit rating was downgraded. A creditor could care less how much debt you're carrying. They just want to know that you'll make the minimum payment. It's in their interest for you to have more debt. They make more money that way.
The rest of Mr. Krugman's column was excellent. He explains why austerity is a mistake. (Other reading from Mr. Krugman on this was in the British newspaper, The Guardian, on Sunday, June 3, 2012.) He explains why we aren't Greece, we're 90's Japan.
I will leave you with Mr. Krugman's closing line:
For that, in the end, is the best argument against Republicans' claims that they can fix the economy. The fact is that we have already seen the Republican economic future — and it doesn't work.