New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is at it again, conspiracy theorizing about Republicans wanting to prolong the Covid epidemic. (Meanwhile, left elites are prolonging useless mask mandates masks and vaccine passports.) In Friday’s column, “Biden Versus the Friends of Covid,” Krugman repeated his smears against half the country, just as he did last month when he flat-out accused Republican leaders of acting “like apparatchiks in an authoritarian regime….Catering to anti-vaccine hysteria, doing all they can to keep the pandemic going[.]”
Last August, crazed Krugman called Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R), who has kept his state open and the virus numbers in control, an “ally of the coronavirus.” Is that better or worse than a “friend” of Covid? His crime? Blocking state businesses from requiring vaccine passports (now shown to be ineffective at stopping the spread of Covid) and preventing schools from issuing mask mandates (ditto).
On Friday, Krugman performed a modified limited hangout, admitting that Biden’s first year was ending on a “low note,” noting his unpopularity with the public, but then absolving him of blame for the pandemic, whose stubbornly continuous presence in American life Krugman considers a Republican plot:
One thing I don’t think gets enough emphasis, however, is the extent to which Biden has been hurt by the way the pandemic keeps dragging on — a dismal reality for which he bears little responsibility. Oh, the messaging could have been clearer, testing and masks made more available, and so on. But Biden’s biggest error on Covid-19 was underestimating the ruthlessness of his opponents, who have done all they can to undermine America’s pandemic response.
After a small dose of reality about closed schools being a nightmare for parents, Krugman got in a few jabs at past Republican presidents, before trying unconvincingly to assure readers that things were really rosy in America: “But the pandemic probably also darkens perceptions: Aside from a general sense of malaise, people see closed shops and empty office buildings, which makes things look worse than they are.”
As if “closed shops and empty office buildings” aren’t awful enough, Krugman expressed worry about “right-wing politicians hav[ing] gradually shifted from claiming to be against vaccine mandates to being straight-out anti-vax,” and wondered: “But why are right-wing elites so hostile to vaccines?”
Then Krugman dove straight into partisan paranoia, proving the columnist has devoted more thought to his self-made conspiracies that the most feverish anti-vax right-wingers (click “expand”):
Their real motive is the desire to prevent Democrats from achieving any kind of policy success. And is it really implausible to suggest that some leading figures on the right actively want to make things worse, in the belief that the public will blame Biden?
But while the public does indeed tend to blame presidents for anything bad that happens on their watch, they can fight back. In 1948 Harry Truman successfully campaigned against “do-nothing” Republicans who were blocking his economic and housing agenda. Biden could, with even more justification, campaign against Republicans whose anti-vaccine posturing is putting both the national economy and thousands of American lives at risk.
Would this work? Nobody knows. What we do know is that a year of trying to be conciliatory and unifying hasn’t worked. It’s time for Biden to come out swinging.
Biden accusing his former colleagues of being “Jim Crow” racists for not voting the way he wanted was neither “conciliatory” or “unifying.” Where has this guy been the last 12 months?
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