Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

A short diary about the Clinton RFK remark.

The fact that Clinton even had to apologize shows just how ridiculous and cynical the partisans of hope are.

The feigned outrage is a farce.  And Olbermann will have a special comment tonight?

Back on 2-11-08, Paul Krugman wrote:

Why, then, is there so much venom out there?

I won't try for fake evenhandedness here: most of the venom I see is coming from supporters of Mr. Obama, who want their hero or nobody. I'm not the first to point out that the Obama campaign seems dangerously close to becoming a cult of personality. We've already had that from the Bush administration -- remember Operation Flight Suit? We really don't want to go there again.

What's particularly saddening is the way many Obama supporters seem happy with the application of "Clinton rules" -- the term a number of observers use for the way pundits and some news organizations treat any action or statement by the Clintons, no matter how innocuous, as proof of evil intent. n/11krugman.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

What has happened?  When did the progressive blogosphere become the opposite side of the same coin of those hatemongers on the right?

I just read someone calling it the regressive blogosphere.  How very apt.

The whole political system and the media that promotes it, including the blogosphere, is so corrupt.  We lecture about democracy and cannot even hold fair elections.  Our campaigns resemble reality TV more than anything else.

We are a joke to the world.

When did we forget how the media sold us GWB and the Iraq War and now are no less blatant in the push for Obama.  Yet now they are trusted?  Think about it.

We will deserve whatever we get.

Tags: clinton, krugman, obama (all tags)



Re: Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

The hysteria is pretty amazing.
by killjoy 2008-05-23 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

Good diary.

I'm quite certain that if the folks so incensed here today had been anywhere close to Clinton, they would have mobbed her.

These folks are now the mirror image of everything they once decried: sad indeed.

by emsprater 2008-05-23 03:03PM | 0 recs
Thanks...It's all so fake and easy...

to see through.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:06PM | 0 recs
This is more directed...

to what I see as feigned outrage by the purveyors of hope known as his supporters, the ones spewing hatred over the blogosphere.

The media as well.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 04:16PM | 0 recs
the irony

Is that it's Obama supporters that are more willing to rally around the eventual Democratic nominee. Which is the real cult of personality campaign?

Over the last week we've seen the Clinton campaign reference the 2000 elections, the violence in Zimbabwe, and now the Kennedy assassination. Sounds a bit unhinged if you ask me.

by highgrade 2008-05-23 03:05PM | 0 recs
Go check out the hate across the blogs...

and get back to me.

They only say it because they believe it's over.

Let's be real.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Go check out the hate across the blogs...

Check out the Wreck List here.

You wouldn't rec those diaries would you?

by spacemanspiff 2008-05-23 03:15PM | 0 recs
Look at your sig line...

before you criticize me.

I did not rec any diaries.

At least here there are pro-Obama diaries as well.

At the site I referred you to, filled with Clinton hate at the moment, it is traitorous to say a nice thing about Clinton.

I do not support her, by the way.

But, again, before you lecture me, perhaps you should change your sig line, that seems to say you are a troll if you don't support Obama.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Go check out the hate across the blogs...

Thank you citizen53.

I remember you from another blog, and you were a strong Edwards supporter.  

Thanks for your clarity, and calling it what it is.  This is a great diary.

Obama camp has a few mode of operation:

1-Have a big rally.
2-Make a fake outrage about something Hillary said.
3-Make a huge rumor that there are tens of superdelegates ready to endorse you.

Oh, 4-Get couple of your surrogates to start a call for Hillary to quit and that she is damaging the party by staying.

Rinse. Repeat. Rinse. Repeat.

His campaign and the media just being lapdogs for him as opposed to doing their job reminds me so much of 2000.  It's a gamble.  He is intentionally vague.  Except that he is ambitious, and is a smooth politician, I have NO IDEA what his core values are.  NO IDEA whatsoever.

by ghost 2 2008-05-23 05:30PM | 0 recs
This spells the end

This certainly spells the end of any true unity of the Democratic party.

There's just too much hatred and venom.

This may also spell defeat in November, no matter who the nominee is.

I'm really, really sick to my stomach tonight.

by Sieglinde 2008-05-23 03:07PM | 0 recs
Re: This spells the end

Yep.  Great job, Clinton.  You've definitely brought out the best this year.

by ihaveseenenough 2008-05-23 03:12PM | 0 recs
Re: This spells the end

Both sides are to blame.

by Sieglinde 2008-05-23 03:13PM | 0 recs
Re: This spells the end

Maybe, but I'm going to divvy blame at a nice 80-20, and a hint: the 80 doesn't go to the candidate who's constantly derided for trying to spread "hope".

by ihaveseenenough 2008-05-23 03:15PM | 0 recs
Clinton did nothing wrong...

in this matter.  The wrongdoers are the one pretending to be outraged.

Personally, in reading the many comments, I doubt they could even care about anything except trashing Clinton for the sport of it.

That's what we call the politics of hope and unity.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:15PM | 0 recs
Re: This spells the end

Yep, Clinton mad a historical factual remark, and both Obama supporters and Drudge readers united to castigate her for it.

Funny how closely aligned the Obama supporters have become with the GOP and the likes of Drudge in their irrational hatred of the Clintons.


by emsprater 2008-05-23 03:16PM | 0 recs
Everything is the Obamabot's fault


by spacemanspiff 2008-05-23 03:14PM | 0 recs
Go to DailyKos and read...

the venom.  It's not the Clintonites who are hysterical.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

I just turned on the news and the headlines are now "Clinton brings up Kennedy Assassination, Obama Campaign outraged".

Fortunately Wolfie played the entire interview earlier, and her intent was clear as to what she meant.  

Why must the BO campaign always be crybabies? It reflects poorly on the whole Democratic Party :(

by catchawave 2008-05-23 03:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

"Waaah he called you bitter!!!! From San Francisssssco!!!"

"Waaah he knew Ayers!!!"

"Waaah his preacher is scary!!!"

"Waaah they're being sexist!!!"

"Waaah he flicked us off!!!"

"Waaah he talked to Rezko once!!!"

"Waaah he can't win in November so even though he has the majority you guys should just elect me!!!"

Obama?  Crybaby?  Really?

by ihaveseenenough 2008-05-23 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

Before we blame everything one the evil other side, it's worth noting that the ONLY thing the Obama campaign has done since this broke is issue a one line statement saying comments like this have no place in the campaign (which whatever you think Sen. Clinton meant is clearly true) and stepped back, because the entire situation is toxic.

The outrage is from the people who can step back and look at the situation. At best it was one of the most tasteless gaffes in years, with only a non-apology apology, and at worst it was an attempt to egg the Obama campaign into a reaction that backfired horribly.

Considering how eager people here have been to not each and every possible shade of sexism from anyone involved with the race, there seems to be a lot of indifference to the bandying of the ideas of assassination and a young and inspirational black leader in the same train of thought.

It may well be just a staggering bad case of misspeaking, that doesn't in the least mean we expect more than a brush off from the campaign.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:22PM | 0 recs
Not a gaffe at all...

but it has been turned into one by the likely suspects.

That's why I wrote this diary relating back to Krugman's column.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Not a gaffe at all...

I'm not a fan of the dog pile, but come on. Assassination and a young, popular, inspirational black leader simply do not go together in the same breathe. It's at best unbelievably crass and at worst intentionally inflammatory.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:27PM | 0 recs
No offense...

but that is bullshit.

RFK was not black last I recall, nor was he leading in the race for the nomination.  In fact, just moments before he was killed, he talked about taking the fight all the way to the convention.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:31PM | 0 recs
Re: No offense...

And no one is saying RFK and assassination aren't fair topics, in general. But when you're in the middle of explaining why you're still in a race where you have almost no chance of winning anymore, your opponent is a young black leader, and you mention assassination you've really screwed up.

Besides the fact she skipped over any number of more recent primaries that went late to get to that one.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:35PM | 0 recs
The probem is that....

she still has a chance of winning. Not the best chance. But certainly the door is not completely closed. So she's fighting until the door is really closed or she wins. She hasn't crossed the finish line and guess what.....NEITHER HAS OBAMA.

We actually DO NOT HAVE A NOMINEE. But the more idiotic that Obama supporters treat Clinton, the less we are likely to unify. And frankly, the voters that she's getting tend to swing republican we're probably not going to win with Obama anyway, so she has nothing to lose by continuing.

by cosbo 2008-05-23 03:46PM | 0 recs
Re: The probem is that....

I'm not going to get into an argument about this here because it's simply not relevant to the issue here. It doesn't in the least matter what her odds of winning the primary, or of Obama winning the general, are when it comes to deciding whether or not that statement was inappropriate.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:50PM | 0 recs
Her statement fine...

it's the faux outrage that's stupid.

by cosbo 2008-05-23 04:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Her statement fine...

Respectfully, just calling it faux outrage does not actually change how inappropriate the comment was.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 07:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Krugman Redux: Hate Springs Eternal

Also worth noting is that Krugman isn't an impartial commentator by any stretch of the imagination. He's been stumping hard for Sen. Clinton for more than a year, with the sole except of one piece on the gas tax.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:23PM | 0 recs
Blame Krugman...

if you like.  What is going on today is a love fest.  Orwell would be proud.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Blame Krugman...

I'm not blaming him, I'm merely saying that if he's the only (or one of the extremely few) people speaking out in Sen. Clinton's favor on this people should give some serious consideration to what exactly that says.

Sometimes the one standing alone is the sole voice of reason, and sometimes the sky really is blue. It's worth stopping and reassessing when you find your self out there all alone.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:33PM | 0 recs
He said it in February...

yet his words are eerily true today.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:36PM | 0 recs
Re: He said it in February...

Actually, I didn't even notice this, I assumed he rushed out a pro-Clinton op-ed. Besides the fact I disagree with the substance of the statement (is Obama somehow to blame for not stumping for Clinton?) the entire point is irrelevant. Even allowing for the sake of argument there is bias against Clinton, that doesn't have any bearing on how right or wrong anything she says actually is. The statement is available in full and on video; everyone can watch it and draw their own conclusions.

I see absolutely no redeeming value to the point Sen. Clinton was trying to make, the example she chose to use over much more obvious ones, or her campaign or personal response once the situation went public.

I'm not picking a fight, but this really is pretty bad.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:54PM | 0 recs
By the way...

when others were on the GWB bandwagon, Krugman was out there virtually alone speaking out.

From a progressive point of view, he has been remarkably consistent.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:41PM | 0 recs
Re: By the way...

There are any number of people (like Gravel off the top of my head) who have also always been right on Bush, that doesn't actually make them right on anything else.

And it's possible to be a solid progressive and still be irredeemably biased towards Clinton.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 03:48PM | 0 recs
So you are saying...

that Krugman has only been right about Bush and nothing else?

How about these arguments he made about universal health care?

First, Obama is vaguely floating ideas about how to close the hole in his plan -- nothing integral to the plan. And given the way he has campaigned on the issue, he'll have a very hard time saying after the fact, "oh, by the way, you have to sign up or there will be nasty penalties if you ever try later."

Second, the odds are good that many people still won't sign up while healthy, because they won't think that far ahead. And then there will be tremendous pressure to grant amnesty when they get sick and come in seeking coverage. Imagine someone who didn't sign up six years ago, shows up for treatment, and really can't afford insurance with a 50 percent surcharge. Are we really going to able to make that penalty stick?

Third, some of those who don't sign up when healthy won't show up for insurance for years, so that a number of people who should be paying into the pool won't.

Remember, the whole Obama position has been that if you make it affordable, they will come. Now he's saying that if they don't, we'll punish them -- but only when or if they show up in distress. I don't believe this is workable.

Update: I should also mention that if the penalties are enforced, so that people who show up seeking coverage have to pay a penalty rate, guess what will happen? A lot of people will end up deciding to forgo needed medical care. This is exactly what we're trying to avoid -- and it's a far nastier outcome than anything a mandate would do. 04/dean-baker-is-wrong

Time and again I have asked Obama supporters about these points raised by Krugman and have NEVER received an answer.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 04:06PM | 0 recs
Re: So you are saying...

I wasn't saying Krugman has only been right about Bush, I was acknowledging that while he has been right about that point it doesn't automatically add any more weight to his claims about a highly contested political fight where he has clearly been in one candidate's corner.

As to the deeply tangential point you raise, Krugman is not a health care economist and there are any number of people who disagree with his analysis of how Sen. Obama's plan would work in practice. Not least among them Dean Barker, the man who called out Krugman for his incorrect attacks on Sen. Obama's plan and to who Krugman is rebutting (in my opinion poorly) in the article you linked.

Obama counts in large part on behavioral economics here, as he does in much of his economic policy, which says default enrollment can overcome people's tendencies to make the "wrong" societal choice by just making the right choice the default.

For example 401k savings, at a greater cost than this health care would represent, only enjoy an enrollment in the mid-40% if it's set to opt-in (you have to chose to participate). Making it opt-out (you have to chose to remove yourself from the program) gets enrollment into the high 80%. Figure that current insurance rates are higher, the tangible benefits will be greater (almost everyone uses SOME health care and likes the security of having it), and the proposed significant but not crippling penalty for gaming the system and the best guess we can come up with based on actual data (as opposed to "I think" analysis like Krugman provided here) gets us to effectively universal healthcare.

And before we go down to road of "it's not real universal healthcare like Clinton has" we'd be well advised to look at Massachusetts. The only real world US implementation of anything like Sen. Clinton's plan, it's currently running more than double over it's budget and has had to issue significant number of wavers to people who were STILL unable to afford healthcare. And this is Massachusetts, a relatively wealth state. Who knows how this will hold up in some of the truly poor and troubled areas of the country.

by werehippy 2008-05-23 07:44PM | 0 recs

these points that Krugman raised are quite foreseeable.

No answer yet about how those who opt out will be brought into the system, or make up for the difference most pay because they opt out, or the fact that they will avoid treatment so as not to get caught after avoidance for many years.

Krugman is far from alone in seeing the pitfalls of the Obama approach not to cover everyone.

And your remark about Gravel did imply just what I said.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 10:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Actually...

The points that Krugman has raised are certainly debatable, which is what we're doing. The problem being complex systems like national healthcare aren't the kind of thing you can just talk your way through, everyone except the experts in the field are just blowing smoke if they definitively claim to have found the "big flaw" no one else has, certainly if they do so without actual empirical evidence to back it up. Anything else is just competing theories, and again, this isn't Krugman's field.

As to the specific points, they were all answered, you just happen to disagree with them. Those who opt will do so because they either 1) can pay but willfully wish to game the system (opt-out means they must actively decide to go this route) or 2) are unable to pay. 1) is dealt with by some sort of penalty when you come back in to make up the loss, as they will inevitably want to at some point (people at the margin who could pay the original but not the penalty will not be effect because this would be known ahead of time and the number who chose to take a small gain to screw themselves later will be minuscule and can't be avoided in any system). 2) Will either be covered by the assistance Sen. Obama would offer to help people meet costs, or would be just as likely to be unable to afford healthcare under Sen. Clinton's system.

How large an issue the people who opt-out (according to the best estimates of the people who know a small percentage) will be we can't know until it happens. Again though, I refer you to Massachusetts, with it's doubled budget and still continued shortfall. Universal healthcare won't be cheap, and it's going to take time to work out all the bugs. We aren't going to have a perfect system on day 1 regardless of what we try.

Your third point is one of the things wrong with Krugman's entire analysis. It's only a problem IF everyone is wrong about how many people opt-out and IF the cost spirals up and then IF the penalties get too high and then only for the miniscule fraction of the population who could afford the original cost but not the cost plus some penalty and who knew this but chose to opt-out anyway and even then only IF there's no plan in place to help defray costs for these people. One might as well ask what about the people who can't afford healthcare under Sen. Clinton's plan, who in turn can't afford the penalties that come from mandates, and decide to move to the slums in Canada to escape. You can sting together infinite chains of ifs to find some miniscule group who might be a problem, but until there's actually numbers and data involved it's just useless tail chasing. Krugman no more knows that this problem will exist than I do it won't, so arguing about it know is just seeing who can yell the loudest longest.

by werehippy 2008-05-24 08:47AM | 0 recs
Why then... polls show more HRC supporters will abandon Obama if HRC is not the nominee.  And Obama supporters would vote for her if she wins?

Kinda blows up the whole Obama Cult doesn't it?

by hootie4170 2008-05-23 03:31PM | 0 recs
Note the part that I bolded...

and deny that it is inapplicable today.

by citizen53 2008-05-23 03:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Note the part that I bolded...

I deny what?

by hootie4170 2008-05-23 03:42PM | 0 recs
The fascism from BO cultists is

more despicable and hateful than anything ever uttered by the rightmost corner of the GOP right wing.

by observer5 2008-05-23 03:38PM | 0 recs
apt diary.


by canadian gal 2008-05-23 05:23PM | 0 recs
Well thought out and written diary

Thank you.  Especially for this line which says it all.

When did we forget how the media sold us GWB and the Iraq War and now are no less blatant in the push for Obama.  Yet now they are trusted?  Think about it.

by NewHampster 2008-05-23 05:49PM | 0 recs


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