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Monday, February 22, 2016

Paul Krugman, "Cranks on Top": Psychiatric Tests for All Presidential Candidates!

In a New York Times op-ed entitled "Cranks on Top," Paul Krugman begins by savaging Ted Cruz and Donald Trump:

"The thing is, one of the two men who may still have a good chance of becoming the Republican nominee is a scary character. His notions on foreign policy seem to boil down to the belief that America can bully everyone into doing its bidding, and that engaging in diplomacy is a sign of weakness. His ideas on domestic policy are deeply ignorant and irresponsible, and would be disastrous if put into effect.

The other man, of course, has very peculiar hair."

But Krugman saves most of his venom for Marco Rubio:

"In short, Mr. Rubio is peddling crank economics. What’s interesting, however, is why. You see, he’s not pandering to ignorant voters; he’s pandering to an ignorant elite."

Mind you, this denunciation of Marco is coming from someone who wrote in an October 6, 2011 New York Times op-ed entitled "Confronting the Malefactors":

"Occupy Wall Street is starting to look like an important event that might even eventually be seen as a turning point.

. . . .

It’s clear what kinds of things the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators want, and it’s really the job of policy intellectuals and politicians to fill in the details."

Mention by Krugman of the repeal of Glass-Steagall by Bill Clinton, the effect of its repeal on the US economy, or Hillary's position on its reinstatement? Not a chance. Again, consider what Robert B. Reich, Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies, has to say about this matter:

"Hillary Clinton won’t propose reinstating a bank break-up law known as the Glass-Steagall Act – at least according to Alan Blinder, an economist who has been advising Clinton’s campaign. 'You’re not going to see Glass-Steagall,' Blinder said after her economic speech Monday in which she failed to mention it. Blinder said he had spoken to Clinton directly about Glass-Steagall.

This is a big mistake.

It’s a mistake politically because people who believe Hillary Clinton is still too close to Wall Street will not be reassured by her position on Glass-Steagall. Many will recall that her husband led the way to repealing Glass Steagall in 1999 at the request of the big Wall Street banks.

It’s a big mistake economically because the repeal of Glass-Steagall led directly to the 2008 Wall Street crash, and without it we’re in danger of another one."

I agree with Reich. Moreover, it is no wonder why Hillary is unwilling to release the transcripts of her speeches to Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street firms.

More to the point, are we to understand that Hillary, who claimed she came under sniper fire in Bosnia, is not a "crank"? I proposed in my prior blog entry that all remaining US presidential candidates undergo psychiatric testing and that the results be published. Indeed, let's see who are the "cranks"! I am confident the list extends to both parties.

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