S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Krugman hits the political nail on its head, for the most part

Economic genius Paul Krugman, who writes for the New York Times, writes an excellent opinion piece regarding why the Democrats will do badly in today's midterm elections.
My one point of contention with this favorite of mine is his failure to take Republicans' blind, unfair opposition and ability to shape a very untruthful message, into account. Over time it must be very debilitating for the President and the White House.
There was a tremendous amount of good legislation signed into law that is now changing America. But the administration was never successful in broadcasting the fact. It is is a sad thing for the country. Today's election will make it clear how such an innocent mistake can exact a heavy political price.
Amplify’d from
Paul Krugman - New York Times Blog

November 2, 2010, 9:28 am


Obviously, Democrats are going to do badly today, the only question being how badly. And we’ll be drenched in punditry, most of it about how Obama overreached, etc..

But the point is that he didn’t try.

To the extent that Democrats do worse even than the economy explains, one can point to a number of factors. Given that the stimulus was inadequate — which was obvious early on — Obama could have tried to warn Americans of a long hard road ahead, and placed blame on Republicans; instead, the WH kept pretending that things were going swimmingly, never once acknowledging that the original plan wasn’t sufficient (they still haven’t). Remember the Summer of Recovery?

Policy on other fronts seemed almost designed to cede populist sentiments to the right: not even a hint of tough positioning against Wall Street, totally limp policy toward China, and more.

So again: it was mainly the economy, with the effects of a bad economy reinforced by Obama’s consistent policy of undercutting both messages and movements that might have helped Democrats weather the economic storm.

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