Yes and no…
12.1.2012 1 Comment
Paul Krugman gets it right and wrong. This statement, meant to be ironic, is spot on:
On Election Day, The Boston Globe reported, Logan International Airport in Boston was running short of parking spaces. Not for cars — for private jets. Big donors were flooding into the city to attend Mitt Romney’s victory party.
They were, it turned out, misinformed about political reality.
Krugman’s next point, however, issues from an enormous misjudgment of Barack Obama and his program:
But the disappointed plutocrats weren’t wrong about who was on their side. This was very much an election pitting the interests of the very rich against those of the middle class and the poor.
And the Obama campaign won largely by disregarding the warnings of squeamish “centrists” and embracing that reality, stressing the class-war aspect of the confrontation. This ensured not only that President Obama won by huge margins among lower-income voters, but that those voters turned out in large numbers, sealing his victory.
The important thing to understand now is that while the election is over, the class war isn’t. The same people who bet big on Mr. Romney, and lost, are now trying to win by stealth — in the name of fiscal responsibility — the ground they failed to gain in an open election.
Americans may have reelected Barack Obama because they wanted to preserve what remains of America’s welfare state — that is the proper term to use — as Krugman contends. But Barack Obama is not their ally in this matter. He may lack Mitt Romney’s oligarchic bona fides, but he has already proven himself to be a neoliberal without a conscience.
It is long past the moment when Paul Krugman should have realized this truth.