August 26, 2005

#190: A Grudging Correction from the streets of Qum


Paul Krugman had to make an embarrassing correction of his column Don’t Prettify Our History (08/22/05) concerning the 2000 election in Florida and the subsequent unofficial recounts. Anyone who followed that election even casually could see this one coming from a mile away. The Times public editor must have been overwhelmed by popular objections.

However, as important as Krugman fact checking is (we do it ourselves when he cites the research of others), in this case it misses a much larger point. It is not so much about his “lying” as it is about the demented state of mind that leads him and other Democrats to say such preposterous things about that election. In a word, they are crazed!

Think about it. From the halls of academia to the corridors of leading businesses and law firms there are grieving liberals whose career dreams were shattered by the Gore defeat. The narrowness of the election makes it hurt all the more. They simply cannot get past it and the outpouring of woulda, coulda shouldas takes many forms including distorting the facts of the recounts. They blame the ballots, they blame the machines, they blame Katherine Harris, they blame Gore himself and even themselves. When we think of self-flagellation we normally picture Iranian Shiites marching in the streets of Qum whipping themselves about the head and shoulders. But as Krugman’s column illustrates the Democrats have a trip going all their own. And it is self-destructive.

That of course is good news. They will never win the White House until they stop whining and get over Florida in 2000. Happily, they show no signs of doing that. To slightly restate the refrain of Brando’s Terry Malloy in On The Waterfront “They coulda been contendas.”

[The Truth Squad is a group of economists who have long marveled at the writings of Paul Krugman. The Squad Reports are synopses of their discussions. ]

Posted by John Weidner at August 26, 2005 8:16 AM
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