The Corner

Paul Krugman Exposes Amazon Plot to Ship Right-Wing Books Faster

I will leave it to those with a masochistic bent to take up the economic arguments (“arguments”) in Paul Krugman’s column in today’s New York Times. Much more entertaining is Krugman’s paranoiac foray into outright conspiracy theory.

Here is Krugman’s opening line: “Amazon.com, the giant online retailer, has too much power, and it uses that power in ways that hurt America.” How is the Standard Oil of the 21st century hurting America? Glad you asked.

Krugman’s penultimate paragraph:

Last month the Times’s Bits blog documented the case of two Hachette books receiving very different treatment. One is Daniel Schulman’s “Sons of Wichita,” a profile of the Koch brothers; the other is “The Way Forward,” by Paul Ryan, who was Mitt Romney’s running mate and is chairman of the House Budget Committee. Both are listed as eligible for Amazon Prime, and for Mr. Ryan’s book Amazon offers the usual free two-day delivery. What about “Sons of Wichita”? As of Sunday, it “usually ships in 2 to 3 weeks.” Uh-huh.

Is there something in the water at Princeton? Paul: Have you seen any men in red neckties?

It is one thing to think that Amazon has too much power, and that Jeff Bezos bestrides the world of e-commerce like a Silicon Valley Daniel Plainview. But how low have oxygen levels fallen on the mothership if an out-of-stock hardback is evidence of a Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy — from a guy who, according to Roll Call, has donated twenty-fold to Democratic candidates over Republicans since 2000?

 

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