October 29, 2010
Barring a huge upset, Republicans will take control of at least one house of Congress next week. How worried should we be by that prospect?
Not very, say some pundits. After all, the last time Republicans controlled Congress while a Democrat lived in the White House was the period from the beginning of 1995 to the end of 2000. And people remember that era as a good time, a time of rapid job creation and responsible budgets. Can we hope for a similar experience now?
No, we canâ€™t. This is going to be terrible. In fact, future historians will probably look back at the 2010 election as a catastrophe for America, one that condemned the nation to years of political chaos and economic weakness.
Um, could you remind me again which party has had control of the legislative branch of our federal government since the 2006 midterms? I guess there wasn't a whole lot of "political chaos" there, except for the fact that once they really got rolling, they had to pass their major wet-dream legislation through kickbacks and backroom deals, shady procedural maneuvers that nobody had ever heard of, and votes under the cover of darkness, but, hey, I guess shit that you kind of liked got done.
As for economic weakness under a Republican-dominated opposition to Obama's policies, well, you're the Nobel Prize-winning genius who has a column in the NYT and the rest of us don't have jobs, so I guess we'll just have to defer to your superior wisdom. In the mean time, we'll be out collecting bottles and cans.
Krugman goes on to lambaste the poopy-pants Republicans of the mid-90s for the whole government shutdown thing, which was, arguably, bad for both sides. However, he starts that argument with the following:
In the late-1990s, Republicans and Democrats were able to work together on some issues. President Obama seems to believe that the same thing can happen again today. In a recent interview with National Journal, he sounded a conciliatory note, saying that Democrats need to have an â€œappropriate sense of humility,â€ and that he would â€œspend more time building consensus.â€ Good luck with that.
Um, yeah. The problem lies with congressional Republicans, not President Slurpee Joke. The problem has nothing to do with "I won." The problem has nothing to do with a guy who has no compunction whatsoever about going to an ethnic media outlet and uttering the words "punish your enemies." That's a real consensus-builder right there.
Krugman goes on to talk about how fucking outrageous (my spin on how I think he views it) Mitch McConnell's focus on making sure that Obama is a one-term president (HORRORS! No political party has ever worked to this end!) and then writes one of the goddamn stupidest fucking things ever printed in the history of recent punditry:
True, Mr. McConnell did say that he might be willing to work with Mr. Obama in certain circumstances â€” namely, if heâ€™s willing to do a â€œClintonian back flip,â€ taking positions that would find more support among Republicans than in his own party. Of course, this would actually hurt Mr. Obamaâ€™s chances of re-election â€” but thatâ€™s the point.
As someone recently said to Obama himself: "Dude." The reason anyone other than Krugman, who's seemingly giving himself a visual prostate exam here, would mention a "Clintonian back flip" is that it fucking worked for Clinton. In fact, if McConnell actually suggested it, he's kind of fucking up on that whole "one-term" thing.
Bill Clinton ran as a moderate and then tried to ram a Big Government, leftist agenda down America's throat, and subsequently faced a massive backlash. What did he do? He moved toward the center, and got re-elected. Hey, fancy that.
Barry and Krugman both have Nobels. I once got four gold stars on a crayon drawing of a horsey, and my mom put it up on the fridge. I leave it up to you to determine which is the greater honor.
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