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Mon Mar 6, 2017, 08:00 AM

Paul Krugman: A Party Not Ready to Govern

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/06/opinion/a-party-not-ready-to-govern.html?_r=0

A Party Not Ready to Govern
Paul Krugman MARCH 6, 2017


According to Politico, a Trump confidante says that the man in the Oval Office — or more often at Mar-a-Lago — is “tired of everyone thinking his presidency is screwed up.” Pro tip: The best way to combat perceptions that you’re screwing up is, you know, to stop screwing up.

But he can’t, of course. And it’s not just a personal problem.


It goes without saying that Donald Trump is the least qualified individual, temperamentally or intellectually, ever installed in the White House. As he veers from wild accusations against President Obama to snide remarks about Arnold Schwarzenegger, he’s doing a very good imitation of someone experiencing a personal breakdown — even though he has yet to confront a crisis not of his own making. Thanks, Comey.

But the broader Republican quagmire — the party’s failure so far to make significant progress toward any of its policy promises — isn’t just about Mr. Trump’s inadequacies. The whole party, it turns out, has been faking it for years. Its leaders’ rhetoric was empty; they have no idea how to turn their slogans into actual legislation, because they’ve never bothered to understand how anything important works.

snip//

At this point, then, major Republican initiatives are bogged down for reasons that have nothing to do with the personality flaws of the tweeter in chief, and everything to do with the broader, more fundamental fecklessness of his party.

Does this mean that nothing substantive will happen on the policy front? Not necessarily. Republicans may decide to ram through a health plan that causes mass suffering, and hope to blame it on Mr. Obama. They may give up on anything resembling a principled tax reform, and just throw a few trillion dollars at rich people instead.

But whatever the eventual outcome, what we’re witnessing is what happens when a party that gave up hard thinking in favor of empty sloganeering ends up in charge of actual policy. And it’s not a pretty sight.

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Arrow 20 replies Author Time Post
Reply Paul Krugman: A Party Not Ready to Govern (Original post)
babylonsister Mar 2017 OP
roscoeroscoe Mar 2017 #1
ProfessorPlum Mar 2017 #2
Friend or Foe Mar 2017 #10
disalitervisum Mar 2017 #11
ProfessorPlum Mar 2017 #16
JudyM Mar 2017 #13
nolabels Mar 2017 #15
ProfessorPlum Mar 2017 #17
nolabels Mar 2017 #18
Crunchy Frog Mar 2017 #19
ProfessorPlum Mar 2017 #20
babylonsister Mar 2017 #3
kentuck Mar 2017 #4
Victor_c3 Mar 2017 #6
SunSeeker Mar 2017 #5
mountain grammy Mar 2017 #7
lagomorph777 Mar 2017 #8
Nitram Mar 2017 #9
Scarsdale Mar 2017 #12
Nac Mac Feegle Mar 2017 #14

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 08:32 AM

1. Good observations

It's true, their only plans are... Look over there! Shiny object!

They don't have anything

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 08:40 AM

2. It's because capitalism, left to its own devices, creates the society that the Republicans' masters

want.

With no government to re-distribute money - to essentially move money from the top back to the workers so that the whole cycle of people buying things and other people providing goods and services can keep going continually - the money flows to the top and then just stays there. It creates a world of a few people with all of the money, and a vast underclass that have no choice but to exchange all of their labor for mere existence, if that.

This is the dream of the wealthy elite - slave or unpaid labor - minimal operating costs, and a world where all of their scads of money just sit offshore or in accounts, doing nothing, and where they can feel superior to all of those struggling clods who have to work for them, for crumbs.

And to create that, the GOP essentially has to do nothing - just destroy the government that saves us from trading our labor for nothing, from con men, from fraud and from being poisoned or robbed or otherwise destroyed by the rich. Just let minimum wage float away, social security dry up, collective bargaining die . . . and they win.

They don't have to govern because not governing lets all of their benefactors get what they want or keep what they already have by default.

Democrats, on the other hand, have to think of palatable ways to separate the wealthy from just some of their money, so that it can flow through the proles hands for a few moments before they trade back again for housing, food, warmth, education, goods, or transportation. At which point it is right back in the hands of the elite. That's governance, and something the lackeys of the wealthy never have to worry about.

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Response to ProfessorPlum (Reply #2)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:39 AM

10. I have but one word to offer to your description of the future

Guillotine!

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Response to ProfessorPlum (Reply #2)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:40 AM

11. Thank you so much for that concise explanation, I wish

more people understood that, and how the process was radically accelerated under the Reagan administration.

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Response to disalitervisum (Reply #11)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 01:14 PM

16. It's why GHWBush called Reagan's tax structure

"voodoo economics". Because it would kill the economy by allowing circulated wealth to accumulate and do nothing.

Of course, that was before the Bush's drank the kool aid and got on board with the USA government becoming a colonial power over its own people.

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Response to ProfessorPlum (Reply #2)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:54 AM

13. Absolutely. My first thought on waking this a.m. was "are we just going to let them kill everything

that's good?" with a vision in mind of uprising like the French Revolution.

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Response to ProfessorPlum (Reply #2)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 10:23 AM

15. More concise terms you're saying that is no actual effective party working for the common person?

This is not actually breaking some news. Many of us figured that out thirty or forty years ago.
We have been told at nauseam to vote for the lesser of two evils since like forever. Well, that was done but what you now have come to observe is that estate lords and slave owners have always had a larger sway with the government than it's citizens.

The entirety of the revolutionary papers was written that way back in day because the revolutionaries knew they would need the resources of these type of people for them to succeed. Lawyerly people have always had a way of polishing over the real facts with flowery conjunctive words. It is the why and how they do what they do.

It's also important to note the whole thing was written with enough open interpretation space that would ensure things remained similar as before. This is to say, that as long as those who put in and controlled the levers of the compromised elected officials stayed in there, then they would mostly be able to do as the pleased at any rate. And that has how it has mostly been since then

Just like the good ole days back in the Roman days, more bread and circuses.

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Response to nolabels (Reply #15)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 01:16 PM

17. I suppose it depends on your definition of "effective"

whether you would classify the Democratic party in that way or not. They have the job of not turning America into a Randian dystopia, and we aren't there yet. To the extent that we are more rapidly heading in that direction, it reflects poorly on them. And the voters.

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Response to ProfessorPlum (Reply #17)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 02:29 PM

18. I agree but would also say....

Both parties and their people are the victims. The Republican Party was actually somewhat respectiful before Nixon.

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Response to ProfessorPlum (Reply #2)

Tue Mar 7, 2017, 12:53 PM

19. What happens when there's no one left to buy

Enough of their shit to keep them making money?

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Response to Crunchy Frog (Reply #19)

Tue Mar 7, 2017, 01:02 PM

20. on that day, my dear Frog, the sky will open up,

the economy will grind to a loud, angry halt, and Capitalist White Jeebus will whisk the 0.1% up into the clouds, as the rest of us collapse into the Last Depression.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:00 AM

3. n/t

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:11 AM

4. Amen to that!

Republicans are unable to govern.

They are a reactionary Party.

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Response to kentuck (Reply #4)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:26 AM

6. I don't believe they even want to govern

They'd love to dismantle it all, except for the law enforcement and military part and let everything else be run by unbridled capitalism.

Them failing and proving that government doesn't work gives them more reason to dismantle it.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:25 AM

5. K & R

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:29 AM

7. It began a long time ago

with Republicans. The work they do once elected is devising ways to remain in power. Actually govern? No time for that.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:31 AM

8. They've gone from greedy unscrupulous bastards to raving meth-addled sadists.

"Not ready to govern" doesn't really capture the depth of the evil here. They must be stopped, removed from office, and jailed en masse.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:37 AM

9. Wow! Paul Krugman is right on the money!

Excellent, hard-hitting piece.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 09:47 AM

12. The Gang that Could Not Shoot Straight

is more comfortable obstructing anything President Obama tried to do, then taking lots of time off. Democratic Presidents are much smarter than gop presidents. They HAVE to be, to clean up messes left by the gop.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Mon Mar 6, 2017, 10:15 AM

14. The authoritarian mindset that comprises a republican

Does not wish to govern.

They mean to rule.

They want to recreate a feudal system, where there are the Royalty and the serfs, with a little merchant class between them.

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