Krugman: ‘There will be blood’

The state of the Krugman is dark. Very very dark.

He starts with Alan Simpson’s eagerness for the “bloodbath” that will come when Republicans oppose raising the Federal debt ceiling this spring, unless Obama comes through with concessions formed in their dreams. (Of course, the Fierce Advocate of the People will resist.)

But Simpson is eager, not regretful, and that’s the problem. (You remember Alan Simpson — Mr. “Kill the Cow with 310-Million Tits.”  Mr. Deficit Commission.  Mr. Sensitive.) Thus the Professor (my emphasis throughout):

So here’s what the very serious Mr. Simpson said on Friday: “I can’t wait for the blood bath in April. … When debt limit time comes, they’re going to look around and say, ‘What in the hell do we do now? We’ve got guys who will not approve the debt limit extension unless we give ’em a piece of meat, real meat,’ ” meaning spending cuts. “And boy, the blood bath will be extraordinary,” he continued.

Think of Mr. Simpson’s blood lust as one more piece of evidence that our nation is in much worse shape, much closer to a political breakdown, than most people realize.

Krugman then lists the many “country last” initiatives of the GOP — intimidating the Fed into not following one of its two statutory mandates (reduce high unemployment); busting a hole in the budget with the Bush tax cut extension; at the same time, blocking extension of unemployment benefits (“From your pocket to mine, sucker“); and blocking aid for small businesses (real ones this time).

Shockingly, the GOP even wants to block extension of the START treaty, which helps secure loose Russian nukes:

These days, national security experts are tearing their hair out over the decision of Senate Republicans to block a desperately needed new strategic arms treaty. And everyone knows that these Republicans oppose the treaty, not because of legitimate objections, but simply because it’s an Obama administration initiative; if sabotaging the president endangers the nation, so be it.

Party first: “the GOP is just not interested in helping a Democrat govern.”

Krugman’s point: this is not a game. They’re playing chicken with the nation’s future — all of it.

How does this end? … It’s hard to see how this situation is resolved without a major crisis of some kind. Mr. Simpson may or may not get the blood bath he craves this April, but there will be blood sooner or later. And we can only hope that the nation that emerges from that blood bath is still one we recognize.

Think that last one through. In each of America’s last three crises, we’ve had the luck to find, and choose, a great leader — Washington, Lincoln, Roosevelt. That makes us three-for-three. If we went three-for-four, we’d still have a great batting average, but we’d lose horribly.

“There will be blood.” The state of the Krugman is dark indeed.


Gaius Publius is a professional writer living on the West Coast of the United States.

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