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Krugman on the Coming Conservative Tea Parties

April 13, 2009

At the New York Times, Paul Krugman has a piece about the conservative Republican demonstrations, being called tea parties, which are being held on April 15th. Krugman ties the ahistorical and aggressively partisan rhetoric surrounding these protests with general tone of extremism coming out of the Republican party of the 80’s and 90’s. In other words, as odd as the Tea Parties appear to be, they are the continuation of standard Republican propaganda. Krugman points out

Thus, President Obama is being called a “socialist” who seeks to destroy capitalism. Why? Because he wants to raise the tax rate on the highest-income Americans back to, um, about 10 percentage points less than it was for most of the Reagan administration. Bizarre.

But the charge of socialism is being thrown around only because “liberal” doesn’t seem to carry the punch it used to. And if you go back just a few years, you find top Republican figures making equally bizarre claims about what liberals were up to. Remember when Karl Rove declared that liberals wanted to offer “therapy and understanding” to the 9/11 terrorists?

Then there are the claims made at some recent tea-party events that Mr. Obama wasn’t born in America, which follow on earlier claims that he is a secret Muslim. Crazy stuff — but nowhere near as crazy as the claims, during the last Democratic administration, that the Clintons were murderers, claims that were supported by a campaign of innuendo on the part of big-league conservative media outlets and figures, especially Rush Limbaugh.

One Comment leave one →
  1. john permalink
    April 13, 2009 4:28 pm

    I like Paul Krugman, and i’m pretty sure he is too intelligent to have called Bush a fascist. But republicans calling Obama a socialist is really no different than the constant cries of fascist from the left for the past 8 years. People only seem to rail against partisan bickering when their guy is in office. When it’s the other guy the gloves come off. For the democrats to expect the republicans to take the high road after the last 8 years is kind of ridiculous.

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