The Agenda

Last Krugman Thought (for Today)

One day I’ll stop blogging about the man all the time, but he’s an object lesson in so many different pathologies of opinion journalism that I really can’t help it. 

A friend — one of my smartest friends, I might add — raises the following point. In Krugman’s concluding paragraph of the “More on Jon Gruber” post, he writes:

And here’s the thing: by claiming that there’s a huge scandal when nothing worse happened than insufficient care about disclosure, Greenwald and the people at FDL are actually reducing our ability to call foul on real corruption. After all, if everything is a scandal, nothing is a scandal. One of these days, perhaps soon, we’ll have a genuinely corrupt administration again — but when whistleblowers try to call attention to the misdeeds, you can be sure that there will be claims that “even liberals said that Obama did things just as bad or worse.” The crusade against Gruber is getting really destructive.

To which my friend replies: “In other words, no enemies to the left, because it makes it harder to trash the right.”

Had Krugman been born under more propitious circumstances, he could have served as an excellent Minister of Discursive Management and Enforcement. Recall that Nobel laureates who disagree with him are self-marginalizing “freshwater” thinkers he deems irrelevant, and everyone else who disagrees with him is a corporate shill. The system is airtight!

Reihan Salam is president of the Manhattan Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

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