Paul Krugman — @paulkrugman


  • 1

    • So the new budget is being rolled out. It's just a wish list, yada yada. But it does tell us abt values 1/ https://t.co/WZUrHHFIQL
    • And what we see is real zeal to slash Medicaid/food stamps. Now, I know we're not supposed to say much about how Trump voters were fooled 2/
    • But can we say a word about WV, the ultimate Trump state, vs NJ? Here's Medicaid and the impact of Obamacare on ins… https://t.co/Mj6krU8Cw8
    • And here's food stamps as share of population 4/ https://t.co/rlWtXp9N7m
    • So the people of WV voted overwhelmingly -- for whatever reason -- to destroy their own state's safety net and economy. 5/

    2 days ago ago via Twitter

  • 2

    • I get a bit impatient with articles pointing out how terrible Trump is, how unqualified for office, etc. Mind you, they're all true 1/
    • And to be fair, it's just a couple of weeks since much of the commentariat was declaring that "Trump just became president" (again) 2/
    • But there was always chance that a totally unqualified man would end up in the WH -- which is why we have Cong oversight and impeachment 3/
    • The point now is that the vast majority of Rs in DC know perfectly well that Trump is unstable and cognitively inadequate if not impaired 4/
    • And realize that he's huge threat to national security, which they've always claimed to be their special issue. Yet they will do nothing 5/
    • BC Trump gives them a chance to implement their partisan agenda, especially tax cuts. See Mitch McConnell https://t.co/tQKeKYsb4V 6/
    • So the rot in our republic runs very deep. Half the political establishment will accept ANYTHING that gives it partisan edge 7/
    • Incompetence, abuse of power, raw personal corruption, and now betrayal of allies bordering on treason. This is much bigger than Trump 8/

    1 week ago ago via Twitter

  • 3

    • This is pretty funny, or would be if democracy weren't on the line. But it also has echoes 1/ https://t.co/6u4dxpBxeR
    • For some of us, the "few exceptions" line recalls a classic Alan Greenspan op-ed opposing financial regulation 2/ https://t.co/nOSrWweODU
    • The "with notably rare exceptions (2008, for example) ..." was so perfectly awful that it inspired a whole genre 3/ https://t.co/oIYhKsWJWF
    • Of course, these parodies were unfair, with notably rare exceptions. Or, actually, completely fair. Some favorites… https://t.co/WuAH8rpbPa

    1 week ago ago via Twitter

  • 4


    1 week ago ago via Twitter

  • 5

    • Amazing: people saying, "Ds mad at Comey for throwing election, so can't complain when Trump fires him to kill Russia investigation" 1/
    • You think, they can't be that stupid. Of course some of them are. But basically it's that they think or hope that YOU are stupid 2/
    • And again, let's be clear: anyone helping with this obvious coverup is deliberately being complicit with possible foreign subversion 3/
    • Remember this any time any Republican, ever, pretends to be more patriotic than Democrats. 4/
    • And totally justified. At this point we arguably do not have a legitimate president or administration. 1/ https://t.co/SSc6dC9Adi
    • We don't know the whole truth here. But the point is that Trump is trying to prevent us from finding out 2/
    • This is a clear violation of the spirit of his oath of office, and probably the letter; he is setting himself above the law 3/
    • He deserves no presumption of innocence, and no deference to claims that he has the right to govern. 4/

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter

  • 6

    • In a transit lounge, checking in on the domestic atrocities. Not much original to say, except this: consider the utter contempt for voters
    • Rs clearly believe that they can use culture-war propaganda to keep working-class whites from noticing that health care is being taken away
    • Millions of struggling families about to lose coverage, or face soaring costs, to provide almost a trillion in tax cuts for wealthy
    • And yet they're expected to keep believing that Trump is on their side against the "elites". Can they really get away with this?

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter

  • 7

    • A few notes on the Trumpcare vote that is apparently going down today. Maybe the first point is that it's not mainly about Trump 1/
    • Trump isn't the reason House Rs may be about to pass this monstrosity -- misery for millions, so a handful of wealthy can get tax cuts 2/
    • The point instead is that GOP has been lying about health for 7 years, and this was all they ever had to offer. Trump just opens the door 3/
    • And the legislative action -- rush it through without CBO analysis, lest anyone see just how horrible it is -- is standard GOP operation 4/
    • I've been trying to tell people this story for years; notably, Paul Ryan was always an obvious flimflammer -- but got labeled "shrill" 5/
    • And the both-sides people will no doubt find a way to place blame equally on Ds even after all this. But this is about one -- one - party 6/
    • And the question now is whether there is a heavy political price. If not, i don't know what hope there is for America 7/
    • Brief personal note: I'm going to be traveling the next few days-- IMF conference on capital flows, in Zambia
    • I hope to learn a lot, also see Victoria Falls. But may be out of touch with the latest US political atrocities!

    2 weeks ago ago via Twitter

  • 8

    • So, a few thoughts on uncertainty and climate policy. You might not know this from some discussion, but this has been a major research topic
    • See for example here: https://t.co/yMY0M76v6y Much of the discussion gets technical, but I think you can get the gist pretty easily
    • Suppose it might rain heavily today. The forecast is uncertain, as forecasts are, although meteorologists do their best.
    • So should I bring an umbrella? If I do, and it doesn't rain, I've borne an unnecessary cost. If I don't, and it does, I get soaked
    • So two questions. One is probabilities: how likely is that rain. The other is costs: how heavy is that umbrella, how bad being drenched
    • Climate change is the rain; climate policy the umbrella. What do we know? 1. Climate change could be really, truly, civilization-ending bad
    • 2. Mitigation policy is NOT hugely costly. We have lots of evidence and experience: pollution control done well not at odds with growth
    • And the usual record is that market-based stuff -- cap&trade or taxes -- ends up much cheaper than expected. Check history of acid rain
    • Oh, and renewable technology has made action even cheaper than optimists imagined. So uncertainty is NOT a reason to do nothing
    • On the contrary, it makes the case for climate action stronger. Anyone saying otherwise either hasn't thought it through or has an agenda

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter

  • 9

    • Growing health disparities are a big trend in America -- Case/Deaton "deaths of despair" made headlines, but part of bigger story 1/
    • But have policy intellectuals on the right even noticed? Just read Martin Feldstein on raising Social Security age https://t.co/nEN3hOXcEg
    • Here's the passage that caught my eye, calling for 3-year rise in retirement age because that's how much life expec… https://t.co/DtW0NNcBaZ
    • I'm actually shocked. I thought everyone paying any attention to retirement policy knew that life expectancy is rising mainly for high SES
    • And that lower-income, lower-education workers -- *precisely the people who count on SS* -- haven't seen much if any rise.
    • Is any of this -- any sense of the realities of life below the upper middle class -- getting through, at all?

    3 weeks ago ago via Twitter


    • We don't know exactly what Trump will unveil on taxes, but it appears to focus on corporate tax-- which means expect lots of weirdness 1/
    • The thing about corporate tax analysis/reform is that it's really hard and technical. Corps have many ways to shift profits around 2/
    • Causing them to materialize for tax purposes at different times and places -- even more than individuals. So careful design is essential 3/
    • If you're going to do a major tax reform you need a large team of specialists -- economists, lawyers, accountants -- and plenty of time 4/
    • Lots of consulting with interested parties essential too -- that's how you find out where the land mines and gaping loopholes are 5/
    • Tax reform is, I'd say, order of magnitude harder than health reform, where the principles at least are clear. So what will happen now? 6/
    • Well, we're about to get big numbers from the people who brought you Trumpcare -- except with even less preparation and expertise 7/
    • And on a much, much harder subject. Unless Goldman Sachs has a secret team on it, the only question will be just how sick a joke this is 8/
    • A further question about corporate taxes: why is this an urgent issue? Always room for improvement, but corporations are NOT fleeing US.
    • Since 1999, US corps have invested $5.5 trillion abroad; foreign corps $4.7 trillion here. Pretty close to balance in $18 trillion economy
    • So the idea that we've somehow created a business-unfriendly environment is hype -- coming from corps who want tax cuts, of course
    • Trumptax: Economic illiteracy merged with legislative ignorance. It's going to be terrific, believe me https://t.co/51Hq3mzU5n

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • So it's apparently Le Pen - Macron, which in turn probably means Macron. If so, that's a disaster averted. Good. But ....
    • I actually worry about EU complacency. I support the European project; but EU institutions (ECB excepted) have failed badly since 2008
    • And there's been a bad pattern in which every time existential risk is narrowly averted, it's taken as a sign that nothing needs to change
    • French election should be a wakeup call, not signal for eurocrats to keep ignoring the democratic deficit, to keep imposing austerity, etc

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • So it seems that the Trumpkins are going to promise huge growth due to tax cuts for the rich. Reminder: this is pure derp 1/
    • Taxes on the rich have gone up and down quite a lot: down under Reagan, up under Clinton, down under W, up under Ob… https://t.co/76uDT0JUTs
    • Here's the growth performance, from 1st quarter of president to 1st of next (truncating Obama at 2016IV) 3/ https://t.co/cEtcq7JM4Z
    • Not the slightest hint in this history that cutting taxes increases growth, or raising them hurts it. And don't forget Kansas/California 4/
    • So why do we still hear supply-side derp? Difficult 2 get a man to understand something when his paycheck depends on not understanding it 5/

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • This is awesome on two levels. First, DOJ insulting a major-city police department by calling it "soft on crime"… https://t.co/pI12G7Tf64
    • Second, New York? New York? Crime at record lows; murder was up slightly in 2015, but went back down to 335 (versus… https://t.co/H7xrmpkkfi
    • This combination of ignorance and gratuitous insult sounds like some guy ranting over his 4th beer -- not the U.S. Department of Justice!
    • NYPD is, understandably, pissed https://t.co/mkatbcQcVl

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • I agree: Pretty good odds that domestic policy will go mostly nowhere. But it's mostly not bc of Trump. https://t.co/7MGc3qope2
    • Health care debacle was basically bc whole GOP has been lying all along, and never had any ideas other than to throw millions off coverage
    • Tax stalled in part bc of Trump tax returns and fake populism, but basically GOP lies about big government vs reality of popular programs
    • How would a President Rubio have done things differently? The point is that GOP has an awful agenda, which can't survive sunlight
    • Note: When journos who hyped email pseudo-scandal pile on over HRC campaign errors, it's partly CYA over their own role in Trump disaster

    1 month ago ago via Twitter



  • 1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • A few thoughts on the trade deficit: 1. Trump no longer claiming that China is a currency manipulator is a flip-flop -- but into truth
    • 2. But in that case what's left of his trade agenda? Nothing much as far as I can see. Tweeting at outsourcers won't accomplish much
    • 3. Trade deficit is flip side of capital inflows, which keep dollar relatively strong. And capital inflows probably driven by fundamentals
    • 4. Notably, US has much more favorable demography than other rich countries, which means more investment opportunit… https://t.co/ZZqHF0TzMg
    • 5. So capital "wants" to flow to US, with persistent trade deficit as counterpart. No hint Trump will do anything to change this ... unless
    • 6. I suppose sufficiently erratic policies might scare off foreign investors. But that's probably not the plan!
    • In a way, Josh is saying White House now occupied by serious victim of the Dunning-Kruger effect. And he has bombs. https://t.co/tI2m1ZFLcO

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • Why did Trump reverse story and declare China not a currency manipulator? Did he finally get good advice? Probably not -- I mean, from whom?
    • More likely he was following his familiar pattern: tough talk until he runs into someone actually tough, at which point complete wimp out
    • Live shot of Trump team confronting China https://t.co/PPqKlGGpDW
    • China has gone from selling yuan and buying dollars -- weakening currency and adding reserves -- to doing the rever… https://t.co/GIKEDw65Y1

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • A thread on macroeconomics in Great Recession and after. First, Noah Smith notes validation of Keynesian econ 1/ https://t.co/bpaaewsd17
    • Or, as he says, ahem, "Krugman was right." But even though IS-LM-type models were working well, policymakers turned to austerity 2/
    • Which was every bit as damaging as the Keynesians said it would be 3/ https://t.co/t6EfQhyhhV
    • Why was good advice ignored? Farrell says disagreement among economists undermined their influence after 2009 4/ https://t.co/1mHWNHJNKG
    • What this says, in turn, is that academic economists who enabled bad ideas out of ambition, ideological blinders, etc did a lot of damage 5/
    • I know we're all jaded, but the FBI thought a Trump adviser was acting as an agent for the Russian government. That's not a small thing. — (RT @JamesSurowiecki)

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • Good summary from Brad here, but he misses one more thing that should push the number down even further https://t.co/t2R94lGWHS
    • Dow 36K assumed that buying the Dow means buying a fixed share of future corporate profits forever. But companies rise and fall 2/
    • If you bought the Dow in 1970, you weren't getting a share of Apple's future profits! So there are multiple levels of nonsense 3/
    • Yet people are praising the Hassett choice because Trump could have done much worse -- which is true. But talk about low expectations! 4/
    • A Dem president would be roundly condemned for choosing a top adviser who had committed a blooper that big -- and never acknowledged it 5/

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • A thought I know others are having: the great progressive dilemma about which aspect of Trumpism to attack has disappeared 1/
    • Just a couple of weeks ago it seemed as if u had to choose: talk about Russia/corruption/illegitimacy, or talk about betrayal of workers? 2/
    • Instead it's all coming together: narrative about Trump as corrupt Russian puppet who shouldn't be prez and is betraying working class! 3/
    • And the amazing thing is that it's all fair and all true. Sad!

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • A thought on Trumpian dynamics: many voters really thought he was the take-charge, get-things done character he played on The Apprentice
    • This let him get away with promising the impossible -- much better health coverage for much less, bringing back coal, and so on
    • But it also sets him up for a fall. It's already starting to happen, and will get much worse. Behold the Trump deat… https://t.co/6KXPzFwnGQ
    • But it also sets him up for a fall. It's already starting to happen, and will get much worse. Behold the Trump deat… https://t.co/6KXPzFwnGQ

    1 month ago ago via Twitter


    • I don't see that much discussion about the politics of infrastructure -- mostly suggestions that Dems might go along. So let's talk 1/
    • The obvious thing, you might think, would b just to borrow lots of money and spend it on roads, bridges, etc. Which is what liberals want 2/
    • But Freedom Caucus wld go wild. So Trump team has already come out for a conservative-friendly approach: tax credits for private spending 3/
    • However, this is really bad policy -- wld probably amount to giveaway to cronies, with little new investment. And Ds know this, 4/
    • So Trump wld have to choose between angering right and having 0 D support. Hard to see him getting this right. Plus there's another prob 5/
    • You can't build infrastructure without some ability to plan and make choices -- it's expertise-intensive. From Trump and co? Really? 6/
    • So I have a hard time imagining how this happens. Maybe he can ram a giant ripoff thru Congress, but doubtful

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Trump support in coal country is the ultimate demonstration that there is indeed a sucker born every minute. No, th… https://t.co/ZlmaaLnZKs
    • Meanwhile, few regions have benefited more from the program Trump is still trying to kill https://t.co/pz55EZyaWs
    • So, we've moved forward the point at which Trump complains "nobody knew infrastructure was so complicated https://t.co/nR6zW43uP5
    • Remember, the infrastructure plan so far makes AHCA look like a brilliant piece of legislation https://t.co/alnlqhyMBf
    • OK, jealous: "Trump getting tax reform done looks about as likely as Trump University joining the Ivy League." https://t.co/90cRn3bDt1

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • DL goes for a third option -- Ryan does care about ideas, but his ideas are bad. True as far as it goes. But is he… https://t.co/qRQsOs2Qbb
    • The key point is that his budgets etc always include obvious misdirection -- huge magic asterisks on spending and taxes
    • A serious wonk, even if not very good at his job, would say *something* about where those trillions in savings come from. Ryan is evasive
    • So maybe he really believes in reverse Robin Hood as the right answer -- but his deficit-hawk act is clearly, self-consciously fake
    • Expanding Medicaid broadened its constituency and appeal, helping to save Obamacare. Great analysis https://t.co/CH8qAjnZXu

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • One under-appreciated effect of the AHCA fiasco: it enhanced credibility of CBO and shattered cred of alt-facts crowd. This matters a lot 1/
    • Up next will be tax bill -- prob without border tax adjustment -- which CBO will score as massively deficit-increasing and regressive 2/
    • Pre AHCApolypse Trump/Ryan might have been able to ram through w/o score and/or trash CBO. Now, much harder to pull that off 3/
    • So with working-class Trump voters seeing headlines abt "huge tax cuts for rich blow up deficit" will this get thru Senate?

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Seriously, there are pretty good odds -- much better than even -- that tax reform goes down in flames too, for diff reasons from AHCA 1/
    • Unlike AHCA, switch to cash flow tax with border adjustment not self-evidently stupid. But where's the constituency? 2/
    • R leaders don't seem to understand it; they claim that it's about increasing US competitiveness, which it isn't https://t.co/Ahv3mONkhC 3/
    • What it might do is reduce corp tax avoidance. But from R point of view taxes not paid under current system a feature, not a bug 4/
    • Meanwhile powerful interest groups worried that dollar won't rise enough to offset negative effect of tax on import prices 5/
    • So what problem that Rs care about does this solve? How does it pass? Actually, how does it get sold to Trump? Ryan says it's great idea? 6/
    • Maybe I'm wrong, but this looks like another quagmire. But at least they can move on to infrastructure. Oh, wait.https://t.co/jEsmBSlvC7
    • Brilliant: https://t.co/MZPXExo5My https://t.co/NCKNToJzjq

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Many of the postmortems on AHCA still saying that it failed because Ryan was a poor salesman, or didn't take enough time to get it right 1/
    • But there was no way to get it right! Obamacare looks the way it does because it has to; its flaws come being too weak, not too strong 2/
    • Remember, those of us who took the policy seriously called this well in advance; no whip counts needed: https://t.co/v2M92Kbk3p
    • Q about Trump/Price sabotage of ACA: can it really hurt states that expanded Medicaid and run own exchanges? I think they're home free (?)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • How does the US system work when the president commands zero trust? Think about the multiple fronts on which Trump is suspect or worse:
    • 1. His election was tainted by foreign intervention on his behalf -- which was obvious but is now more or less official
    • 2. He's blatantly exploiting his office for personal gain, with highly suspect ties to foreign nationals major sources of cash
    • 3. He and his inner circle constantly lie about matters both personal and policy -- just now, he lied about testimony still in progress
    • 4. He shows obvious ignorance of crucial policy matters, domestic and foreign, and also shows no hint of being willing to listen
    • 5. He is obviously, blatantly betraying those who trusted his campaign promises
    • 6. He gives every indication of an unstable temperament, lashing out at everyone and everything that threatens a fragile ego
    • 7. What all this means is that anyone referring to "the president" is, in effect, using air quotes. In any normal sense, he isn't.
    • 8. But in that case how can the courts, the civil service, and -- gulp -- the military function? When he issues orders, who can trust him?
    • Applications online for @stone_lis 5-day workshop on inequality research, GC-CUNY, NYC, June 5-9, apps due April 9. https://t.co/61XYmtMRwM — (RT @JanetGornick)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Death spirals: I am puzzled by CBO on this. Yes, the ACA is probably spiral-proof. AHCA, not so much 1/
    • ACA sets subsidies to limit outlays to max percent of income. So even if premiums rise, most peoples' cost does not. Hence, no spiral 2/
    • But Trumpcare offers flat tax credit, independent of policy cost (which is why low-income seniors face nightmare cost increase 3/
    • So if adverse selection does set in because mandate gone, what stops death spiral? True, tax credit favors young and healthy. But still 4/
    • Trumpcare Plan B is to stand back and let (or help) Ocare collapse. Go for it! Because it won't: subsidies protect against death spiral 1/
    • And Medicaid isn't going anywhere unless Rs kill it. So absent legislation, ACA is here to stay, yay 2/
    • Must-read on how Obamacare came to be, and why Rs can't replace it https://t.co/nwHjFtZ02E

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Obamacare not facing a death spiral. But what about Trump? Imagine: legislative failure -> eroded image of competence among WWC voters
    • Obamacare not facing a death spiral. But what about Trump? Imagine: legislative failure -> eroded image of competence among WWC voters
    • -> diminished clout with Rs in Congress -> decreased willingness to defend him from Russia/corruption scandals -> further stalling of agenda
    • Bear in mind that he has almost surely already committed impeachable offenses. So how goes it? Could go either way.… https://t.co/RPMz0e8RAG

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Can we talk about working-class Trump voters for a minute? Will they ever realize or admit how completely they were scammed? 1/
    • It's not just the fake populism, although that's a big deal. Older working-class voters would take an enormous hit under Trumpcare 2/
    • The CBO finds, for example, that a 64-year-old with an income of 26K would see net premium rise from $1700 to $14,600. Promises broken 3/
    • But also bear in mind that Trump voters believed they were choosing someone effective, who knew how to get things done. And here we are 4/
    • The first and most important legislative initiative is stupid as well as cruel -- complete incompetence in drafting and selling 5/
    • So Trump voters thought they were getting a smart guy who'd fight for them; got a self-dealing blowhard with no idea how to govern 6/
    • And all of this should, of course, have been obvious all along END/

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Important to understand how much work goes into these estimates -- CBO has a microsimulation model developed over years and real experts
    • That doesn't mean they're right -- but a lot more trustworthy than politically motivated commentators who pull numbers out of, um, thin air
    • Also, worth comparing the care CBO put into analyzing AHCA with the utterly slapdash construction of the bill itself
    • Can they really get 50 Senators to vote for this, even given the current state of the GOP? Also, has anyone checked up on Paul Ryan?

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Important to have a sense of scale on CBO numbers. $337 billion is small -- GDP should sum to around $230 TRILLION over that period
    • Important to have a sense of scale on CBO numbers. $337 billion is small -- GDP should sum to around $230 TRILLION over that period
    • But 14 million newly uninsured, rising to 24 million, is a very big deal. Also insecurity for everyone else. So really devastating
    • In individual market, CBO is saying that premiums would go down by 10% over the decade because older people will fl… https://t.co/NyOSAeuL2l — (RT @sangerkatz)

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • This focus-group exercise suggests that Trumpcare may be devastating for Trump either way. (1) https://t.co/eMZ4U96odo
    • (2) These voters really believed that he would fix the ACA in a way that would reduce their out-of-pocket costs
    • (3) so if Trumpcare goes through and they see their costs soar instead, a lot of disillusionment, maybe even sense of betrayal
    • (4) but if the legislation crashes and burns, their perception of Trump as a strong leader who gets things done takes a big hit
    • (5) All this was preordained, of course -- Trump promises on health were lies from day one, and cld never be fulfilled. But now it's real

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • As we wait for the CBO report on Trumpcare, brief notes on CBO projections past. (1) Basic point: CBO right to pred… https://t.co/2SK3UjNMkJ
    • (2) CBO always predicted remaining uninsured, in part bc of undocumented, in part bc of Medicaid non-expansion… https://t.co/aboPmJ5X0e
    • (3) Predicted decline in uninsurance rate 2013-16 was 45%. Actual was 38% -- pretty good given uncertainty https://t.co/ErIlo5VR1U
    • (4) Premiums below projections 2014-16, rose in 2017 but still roughly where expected. Fewer people on exchanges, but more employer coverage
    • (5) Overall this is pretty darn good forecasting, given leap into unknown. Especially compared with R insistence that nobody would benefit!

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Good jobs report. Pro tip: the first few months of job numbers reflect the previous president's policies, not the new guy
    • Especially true when u haven't enacted or even submitted any economic policy legislation. But still, is this good news for Trump?
    • Actually probably not. Voters respond to rate of change, not level -- unemployment was 7.2% in November 1984, but falling fast -> landslide
    • The fact that US probably close to full employment now means slow job growth over next few years, which is actually bad for Trump

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Rs preemptively trashing CBO, because of course they are. When the score is released, it will be called fake news https://t.co/xwtVUeh6A4
    • But one point worth mentioning: CBO did greatly overestimate # who would sign up via exchanges. Did NOT hugely overestimate insurance gains
    • How is this possible? Explained at link. Employer-based held up better than expected. More off-exchange policies https://t.co/KpTwoBsbNH
    • The basic picture is that Ocare did most of what it was supposed to, at less cost. Don't let them pretend differently

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Prediction: if GOP health bill goes down in flames, Trump will deny that he ever supported it and place all blame on Congressional Rs.
    • Prediction: if GOP health bill goes down in flames, Trump will deny that he ever supported it and place all blame on Congressional Rs.
    • If you deal with him, you WILL be left holding the bag when things go wrong, which they usually do. Rs getting a course from Trump U.
    • Terrifying. https://t.co/kRvJmbi99Q

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • This CJR study is damning, both about the American right and about behavior of mainstream media during the campaign https://t.co/CtnsJujovo
    • First of all, things not symmetric, with both sides turning to sources telling what they want to hear: compare top… https://t.co/ykvgYr6qnM
    • Second, when Breitbart said hop, mainstream media basically asked "how high"? https://t.co/SMdaM8qtbZ
    • So this catastrophe overtaking America and the world had deep roots -- and not all of them involving Republicans, let alone the alt-right

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Articles on the border adjustment tax rarely get the economics straight -- probably because they're hard and Ryan doesn't understand either
    • Reality: it replaces corporate profits tax with a VAT, then uses part of proceeds to subsidize employment https://t.co/Ahv3mONkhC
    • The VAT does *nothing* to competitiveness. The wage subsidy might, but probably offset by dollar appreciation. Big misunderstanding
    • But the misunderstanding was part of the sales pitch. So the backlash from retailers is poetic justice even if not quite right
    • So, how's it looking today? https://t.co/VWglrlVRBw

    2 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Tax-raising liberal Jerry Brown and tax-slashing true believer Sam Brownback took office at the same time. How's it… https://t.co/u2dMA48Fuf
    • So why, exactly, do conservatives believe that they can deliver dramatically higher economic growth?
    • So why, exactly, do conservatives believe that they can deliver dramatically higher economic growth?
    • Failing European welfare states watch. Danish taxes are 46% of GDP, vs US 26% https://t.co/UcYCYmj0l8

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Over the years, I've seen lots of willful ignorance and policy confusion. But the current GOP quagmire is special 1/ https://t.co/bDdcQyFuFG
    • Basics aren't complicated: covering pre-existing conditions needs either single-payer or three-legged stool: regulation/mandate/subsidies 2/
    • So it's either Medicare for all or something like Obamacare. This has been obvious ever since health reform became a serious prospect 3/
    • But Republicans made no effort to understand the policy; they bashed the ACA as a weird monstrosity, fooling themselves as well as voters 4/
    • And now they seem genuinely shocked to realize that repeal would hurt tens of millions, and they have no idea what to do instead. 5/
    • Maybe (willful) ignorance isn't always strength, after all? fin/
    • Reporting here seriously incomplete: fails to mention Spicer's rage over the theft of his strawberries https://t.co/3TpqIvxtf3

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Reports say that Kevin Hassett will be named chair of Council of Economic Advisers. The obvious: https://t.co/zbxLGJPVAc
    • Also this, on the housing bubble, from 2004 https://t.co/ha4KSzttXM
    • Also this, on the housing bubble, from 2004 https://t.co/ha4KSzttXM
    • Still, friends have been urging me to got easy on Hassett, saying that Trump could well have done much worse. And they're right. Sad!

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • I keep seeing people ask whether we're in a constitutional crisis. Not yet. But we're deep into a *legitimacy* crisis. Think about it 1/
    • We have a president who lost the popular vote by a wide margin, and only won the electoral college because FBI intervened on his behalf 2/
    • while sitting on evidence (and misleading press) of close contacts between his campaign and a foreign power that was trying to elect him 3/
    • And in office, he has done nothing whatsoever to rise to the responsibility -- self-enrichment without restraint, subservience to Putin 4/
    • and constant lying about everything from votes to policy. If he were a Democrat, impeachment hearings would already be underway 5/
    • So how does this man send Americans to die, get to pick the Supreme Court for decades to come? Our whole system is now tainted 5/
    • The only thing that could remove the taint would be bipartisan, clearly independent investigations followed by action. See, I made a joke 6/
    • And not even a hint of what such plans might look like. Malevolence tempered by incompetence, at every level https://t.co/wygLkrwuX0

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Worth thinking about the reasons Rs in Congress won't hold Trump accountable unless there's an obvious wave election looming 1/
    • First of all, they're all apparatchiks -- certainly in the House. Every one of them works for the big money, and knows it 2/
    • And what the big money wants is tax cuts and deregulation; it will forgive anything if it gets those. But what about the voters? 3/
    • Here a polarized electorate means that the vast majority of Rs face no contest in general election; their voters get their news from Fox 4/
    • And in primaries, with a smaller, older, more racist electorate, the threat is always from the right. So no reason to challenge Trump ... 5/
    • The point is that the sickness runs deep; Trump is horrible, but a horror made possible by GOP corruption and lack of conscience 6/
    • The only thing that might move them is such massive public outrage that even safe seats might be lost. The founders wept 7/
    • Remember what people used to consider White House scandals? There's far worse happening multiple times a day now https://t.co/zMhGua7ukR

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The Trump administration is a first in US history: a leader and circle who fundamentally despise the rule of law. This is unstable 1/
    • One dynamic cld be Hungary-style: steady intimidation and degradation of civil society, with ever-consolidating power for the new regime 2/
    • The other could be implosion: eroding legitimacy undermining power, possibly with the man himself clinging on but effectively emasculated 3/
    • So how's it going? America is not yet lost 4/ https://t.co/opUeJAiV2D

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • So there's a sort of CUNY miracle -- far better engine of upward mobility than anyone else. But is it just a New York effect? 1/
    • Leonhardt notes the role of immigrants, special to this city. But Chetty notes that other NYC schools don't do as well. 2/
    • It really looks as if there's some kind of CUNY special sauce. Really should be a role model. But what's the magic?
    • Leslie M: CUNY graduation rate and test scores are both middle of the pack. It's something different.

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Some pundits are more or less echoing Trump -- hey, polls said he was unpopular before the election, but he won, so there. Sad! 1/
    • First of all, he lost the popular vote by almost as much as polls said he would. Without the Comey letter, wld probably have lost by 4-5 2/
    • Equally important, in the campaign the media assumed he would lose, so they engaged freely in their favorite sport of Clinton-bashing 3/
    • As you read about Trump's business ties, remember the big AP story suggesting HRC corruption because she one met with a Nobel laureate 4/
    • Now Hillary isn't in their sights, and many privately realize the enormity of what they did (although will never admit it). 5/
    • So now Trump doesn't have de facto cover from media more interesting in harassing his opponent than focusing on his awesome awfulness 6/
    • The big risk is still that the media will start to normalize, and worse, become intimidated and obsequious. Don't let it happen! 7/
    • like 2+ weeks in and he's already at last days in the bunker type statements https://t.co/SAAmAU7UhD via @TPM — (RT @joshtpm)

    3 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Given the rate at which things are coming to a head, "President Trump" -- the sort-of legitimate head of a republic -- won't last long 1/
    • Either he or the republic, in any meaningful sense, will be gone quite soon. I have a hard time seeing one year, let alone four 2/
    • What this means is that anyone considering working for or with this White House -- Senators, officials, businessmen -- shouldn't 3/
    • Either you're going to go down with a disgraced president, or you're going to be complicit in the death of democracy. Just say no 4/
    • Is there anyone besides Putin these people haven't insulted? https://t.co/Gk66uK6jUe

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Deep thought: The abruptness and extremism of the refugee ban make no sense in terms of policy, even racist, anti-Muslim policy 1/
    • Best understood, I think, as an attempt by Trump to resuscitate a narrative of personal dominance after a humiliating first week 2/
    • Which makes the judge's stay a big deal -- a new humiliation -- even though it only protects a relative handful of people already here 3/
    • Trump's response is predictable: there will be new, bigger crazy in a couple of days, just to show that he's really in charge 4/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The Art of the Broken Deal: America hasn't always been true to all its principles, or a benign force in the world. But one thing we were: 1/
    • a country that kept its promises. Whether it was a defense pact, a trade agreement, or a personal guarantee of access like a green card 2/
    • the US government made good on what it said it would do. Now, all at once, we've become totally unreliable. 3/
    • It's telling that right away -- from day one -- we're not just tightening rules on refugees, we're betraying friends and allies 4/
    • Iraqis who put their lives on the line for America; green card holders who thought they had been assured a role here; military allies 5/
    • Threats to rip up trade agreements are really just of a piece. The only safety seems to lie in being a personal profit center for Trump 6/
    • The whole world has noticed that countries with plenty of terrorists including the homes of all the 9/11 attackers aren't under the ban 7/
    • What distinguishes them? Trump business. So now everyone knows that America is unreliable, and its leadership up for sale 8/
    • We are never going to get back what we just lost. Thanks, Comey 9/
    • But those aren't the kind of exports Trumpkins care about ... https://t.co/l9S3FPvdK6

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The ACA is the most market-oriented system that can cover great majority; there is no conservative alternative 1/ https://t.co/pGCk4oSk7a
    • But Rs have spent 7 years covering ears and saying la la I can't hear you. Now confronted with reality, are completely lost 2/
    • Total contrast with Dems in 2009, who had settled on general outline of plan during the 2008 primary. 3/
    • What do the actions on refugees and the Mexican tariff have in common? Both instantly squander credibility that took generations to build

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • I pay very little attention to the constant torrent of vitriol sent my way. But I do get a sense of *which* issues generate the most hate 1/
    • and I think it's kind of revealing. During the Obama years, what really drove right-wingers crazy were comments on monetary policy 2/
    • They wanted their hyperinflation and really hated anyone telling them that they were getting it wrong (which they were) 3/
    • So now the truly deep hatred I'm seeing involves trade policy. Call Dear Leader crazy and/or corrupt and they don't like it 4/
    • But explain that he has no idea what he's talking about -- on a subject where I really do have expertise -- and they go wild. 5/
    • In how many ways did the White House fumble @Theresa_May's visit? Let's count→https://t.co/dHhg5uZAK3 https://t.co/jQnzpVnHJk — (RT @ForeignPolicy)

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Back in the old days -- in other words, last week -- the great fear was that Trump would be normalized, wrapped in dignity of his office 1/
    • Not happening. Instead, we have a sort of insecure-ego death spiral underway. Being installed by Comey and Putin, it seems, isn't enough 2/
    • He wants acclaim, and can't stand any ego damage over small crowds, popular vote, Mexico not being willing to pay for wall 3/
    • So he lashes out -- and each time destroys even more of the respect he craves, leading to further lashing out. All this in one week! 4/
    • It's hard even to imagine what comes next. After all, this guy commands the world's most powerful military. 5/
    • Maybe the Senate can pacify him by making his horse a consul, or something? 6/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The Mexican tariff incident is truly amazing, because it shows dysfunctional, ignorance, and incompetence at multiple levels. 1/
    • The motivation for Spicer's initial remarks seems to be that Trump is feeling disrespected (again): people are making fun of him (again) 2/
    • because he promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, and it won't. So someone had the bright idea of claiming that a tariff will do it 3/
    • imagining that the House plan for a border tax adjustment as part of corporate tax reform is the same thing. But it isn't 4/
    • For one thing, that adjustment can't be country-specific; also, it isn't really just like a tariff. But wait, it gets worse 5/
    • Tariffs aren't paid by the exporter; it depends a bit on the details, but it's basically a tax on domestic consumers 6/
    • Wait, it gets worse still: the claim that everyone else taxes imports is wrong too. A VAT is NOT like a tariff 7/ https://t.co/Wboi8FhAdO
    • It's a sales tax that is neutral in its effects on trade. Now, the proposed border tax adjustment is a bit different. It might in fact 8/
    • Act like a combined export subsidy and import tariff. But for that very reason, it might well be considered WTO-illegal. 9/
    • because it's not just doing what others do. And even if it somehow doesn't bring down the world trade system, its effects would be 10/
    • dissipated by a stronger dollar. So let's sum up: Trump was probably feeling low, so aides told him they had an answer to his critics 11/
    • but they didn't understand either the economics or the world trade rules, and didn't realize how explosive the whole thing was 12/
    • Now they're trying to walk it back, looking even more ridiculous in the process. How are we going to survive years of this? 13/
    • Yes. But proximate driver of today's crazy is Trump's own feeling of humiliation at Mexico saying no. https://t.co/gvEk0b5WJC

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The Mexican tariff incident is truly amazing, because it shows dysfunctional, ignorance, and incompetence at multiple levels. 1/
    • The motivation for Spicer's initial remarks seems to be that Trump is feeling disrespected (again): people are making fun of him (again) 2/
    • because he promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, and it won't. So someone had the bright idea of claiming that a tariff will do it 3/
    • imagining that the House plan for a border tax adjustment as part of corporate tax reform is the same thing. But it isn't 4/
    • For one thing, that adjustment can't be country-specific; also, it isn't really just like a tariff. But wait, it gets worse 5/
    • Tariffs aren't paid by the exporter; it depends a bit on the details, but it's basically a tax on domestic consumers 6/
    • Wait, it gets worse still: the claim that everyone else taxes imports is wrong too. A VAT is NOT like a tariff 7/ https://t.co/Wboi8FhAdO
    • It's a sales tax that is neutral in its effects on trade. Now, the proposed border tax adjustment is a bit different. It might in fact 8/
    • Act like a combined export subsidy and import tariff. But for that very reason, it might well be considered WTO-illegal. 9/
    • because it's not just doing what others do. And even if it somehow doesn't bring down the world trade system, its effects would be 10/
    • dissipated by a stronger dollar. So let's sum up: Trump was probably feeling low, so aides told him they had an answer to his critics 11/
    • but they didn't understand either the economics or the world trade rules, and didn't realize how explosive the whole thing was 12/
    • Now they're trying to walk it back, looking even more ridiculous in the process. How are we going to survive years of this? 13/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Hoo boy. Many people -- including Agent Orange -- may not realize just how ignorant and irresponsible this is 1/ https://t.co/Ga7YagiK0O
    • International trade policy is governed by rules -- originally the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, now folded into the WTO 2/
    • A key part of these rules is that countries agree NOT to just impose new tariffs or import quotas unilaterally. 3/
    • So if the US just goes ahead an imposes a 20 percent tariff on Mexico, it has in effect repudiated the whole system (which it built!) 4/
    • Goodbye GATT, goodbye WTO. As I was taught long ago, the danger is not so much retaliation -- although that too -- as emulation 5/
    • Others would follow our lead; trade barriers would start going up all around the world; globalization would move rapidly into reverse. 6/
    • In the long run, the world would be poorer -- but never mind. In the short run there would be immense disruption 7/ https://t.co/dWmLW9wQi1
    • Now, according to Twitter, Spicer is saying that it was just a thought. Oh my God. These are spoiled children playing with loaded guns. 8/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Why is it important to keep pounding on Trump's lies and infantile behavior? A lot has to do with the news media 1/
    • Let's be honest: malfeasance by major news orgs put Trump within Putin-and-Comey reach of the White House 2/
    • I'm referring to their decision -- and it was a decision -- to go light on Trump scandals while creating a haze of doubt around HRC 3/
    • Now the big threat is that they'll turn all deferential, and let this con man wrap himself in the majesty of office 4/
    • Luckily, both Trump's infantilism and the huge outpouring of opposition on Saturday have helped head off the initial impulse to grovel 5/
    • But that impulse is still there, and must be fought. 6/
    • That's an old one. They aren't even up to inventing new lies. https://t.co/xBZkLHwABV

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Judging from my mail, people still seem to have a hard time understanding both what happened in November and what causation means 1/
    • First, Clinton won the popular vote solidly. No, you don't get to exclude New York City or California from the total 2/
    • But Trump won the electoral vote, with margins of <1 percent in PA, MI, WI. So a national 1 percent swing would have changed everything 3/
    • In fact, it would have looked like a solid mandate for HRC: a bigger popular vote margin than Bush in 2004. So what cost that 1%? 4/
    • The answer is, there were multiple things that shouldn't have happened. Maybe HRC should have run a better campaign 5/
    • But her campaign would have looked fine if the press hadn't decided on saturation coverage of the BS email "scandal" 6/
    • while underplaying Trump's cesspool of corruption. And even then she'd have had that 1% if Comey hadn't violated every rule 11 days out 7/
    • So what "caused" the result? Bad question, since any one of these factors would have changed everything. It was a perfect storm 8/
    • Or make that a perfect Stormfront. And yes, Putin may also have tipped the scale. Nothing in there says that Trump deserves our respect 9/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The media will face their first test of the Trump era in the inauguration itself. Early indications are that it will be poorly attended 1/
    • and that the protest on Saturday will draw bigger crowds. Will this be reported? Some may remember how media downplayed Iraq war protests 2/
    • This isn't trivial. Still an open question whether a reign of corruption will be cloaked in the majesty of office. Media have agency! 3/
    • Meanwhile, the Trump bump in real interest rates, reflecting hope for fiscal stimulus, has been fading. Sad! https://t.co/KXbh1HSMEQ

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • So much to worry about right now; so let me add to the pile. I suspect that we'll soon see massive rage on the part of Trump supporters 1/
    • Why? I don't see many saying this, but anti-intellectualism was a big part of the movement: you smug liberals think we're stupid? Hah! 2/
    • Now imagine the reaction when it becomes clear that they were snookered. Not only did they vote to strip themselves of health care 3/
    • because they believed the assurances of an obvious fraudster, but Mr. Make America Great Again is a witting or unwitting foreign agent 4/
    • I guess some will say "Gosh, I made a big mistake". But many will lash out even harder at those know-it-alls who, um, were actually right 5/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • The whole Streep-Trump thing reminds me of a theme that has been running through my thoughts a lot lately -- namely, the death of honor 1/
    • What do I mean? Well, I probably wouldn't have used that word if I hadn't once had a conversation with a young former Marine 2/
    • He had served in Iraq and Afghanistan, and been badly wounded (fully recovered). You might think this would make him glad to be done 3/
    • But he was finding it hard; "There's no honor in civilian life," he said. And I think I know what he meant. It's not just lack of heroism 4/
    • None of us can know how we'd behave facing what he faced. But even the ordinary rules of taking responsibility for your actions -- 5/
    • what my parents called "being a mensch" -- seem to have vanished. Of course many people weren't mensches even in the old days, but it was 6/
    • at least an aspiration, and there was some backlash against anyone obvious lack of honor. But now we're about to install a man who 7/
    • is clearly incapable of taking responsibility for anything, of ever admitting to a mistake or a personal fault. He mocks the disabled 8/
    • then cravenly denies having done so. Time was when such a man would have been utterly shunned. Now, it's hard to av… https://t.co/KjsI932jMc
    • his lack of honor and menschhood, his cowardly-bully persona, is part of what his supporters like -- it makes him one of them 10/
    • For all the economic and social analysis I like to engage in, at some level I really don't get it. What happened to us? 11/
    • There Will Be No Obamacare Replacement https://t.co/AFMSqb5lsd

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Some musings on the next few years: We are, I'd argue, in much deeper and more treacherous waters than even the pessimists are saying 1/
    • It would be one thing if voters had freely chosen a corrupt authoritarian; then we'd be following a terrible but familiar path 2/
    • But as it is we had a deeply tainted election, and everyone knows it; in truth the FBI was the biggest villain, but Russian involvement 3/
    • is just so startling, and so contrary to the usual GOP flag-waving, that 2001-type whitewashing of illegitimacy isn't taking hold 4/
    • A clever, self-controlled Trump would be careful now to preserve appearances and wait for revenge; but instead he's confirming his status 5/
    • as Putin's poodle/stooge with every tweet. Pretty soon everyone will think of him as a Manchurian candidate, even those pretending not to 6/
    • Yet there is no normal political mechanism to deal with this reality. So what happens? The GOP decides to impeach to install Pence? 7/
    • Mass people-power demonstrations? He orders the military to do something illegal and we have disobedience by the national security state? 8/
    • Or, alternatively, overt intimidation of critics by Trump gangs? Don't call this silly -- tell me how this ends. 9/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Watching Republicans trying to grapple with the reality of ACA repeal is both entertaining and deeply dispiriting. 1/
    • The entertainment comes from watching them get caught by a trap of their own devising. Their base will punish them if they don't repeal 2/
    • But white working-class voters convinced themselves that that nice man Trump wouldn't possibly take away their coverage 3/
    • Meanwhile, the logic of coverage remains what it was all along. To cover pre-existing conditions, you need community rating 4/
    • To avoid a death spiral from community rating, you need an individual mandate -- require people to sign up when healthy 5/
    • To ensure that everyone can afford to buy insurance under the mandate, you need subsidies. So it has to be regulation+mandate+subsidy 6/
    • In other words, it basically has to be Obamacare. But Republicans denied and denied, and voters never got it 7/
    • Now, after all that denial, they can repeal at will -- and are realizing that 30 million people, half of them WWC, will lose coverage 8/
    • and they're terrified of the political fallout. Horrible that they got away with this for so long; now they should pay the full price 9/

    4 months ago ago via Twitter


    • This kind of story is really important for understanding the mess we're in. 1/ https://t.co/YRQUwbECrM
    • Yet Obama gets no credit, in part because people are angry at him for various things that he, well, actually hasn't… https://t.co/uQRG9D0fVn
    • How do you fit this into a narrative about "economic anxiety"? Given this kind of thing, why believe that economic populism would help? 3/
    • Interesting: a state-level attempt to revive a depressed region. Also, I grew up in Utica (until age 8) https://t.co/WmsyNM1R3s

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • People are really having a hard time wrapping their minds around the extent of the catastrophe that is the Trump admin. A case in point 1/
    • Here James Kwak, generally a fine analysts, tries to cope with the choice of Larry Kudlow as economic adviser 2/ https://t.co/rsEWCN6386
    • He criticizes Kudlow for simplistic adherence to Econ 101. Would that that were all! Ludlow is a full-on crank; we could only wish that 3/
    • he was doing freshman-level economic analysis, as opposed to living in a fantasy land where tax cuts for the wealthy are magical 4/
    • And yet Kudlow looks like the least crazy, least goldbuggish of the new admin's economic hires. We need to stop sugar-coating! 5/

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Are people noticing that the Trump economic team is shaping up as a gathering of gold bugs? 1/
    • Treasury goes to a guy with little public profile, but hangs out with John Paulson (who is also close to Trump) https://t.co/GSiJOfuiOq 2/
    • And Paulson has been predicting inflation -- sometimes double-digit -- from Fed policy for years 3/ https://t.co/cIocJFsh7P
    • Budget director appears to be John Bircher and conspiracy theorist (but aren't they all? But note economic views 4/ https://t.co/d8M15ztSXm
    • Birchers want return to gold and silver, Mulvaney seems to agree 5/ https://t.co/hTyHc3JbB6
    • In this crew, Kudlow -- who thinks it's always the 1970s, but doesn't seem to see hyperinflation under his bed -- is the most reasonable 6/
    • Whoops -- forgot Mulvaney's Bitcoin derp: "He praised bitcoin as a currency that is "not manipulatable by any government."" 7/

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • I don't waste much time on the anti-anti-Russian left, but this was forwarded to me by friends 1/ https://t.co/DFMPz3i1Jp
    • What really gets me here is the final bit about "Paul Krugman, who was mostly silent during the run-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq" 2/
    • You might want to look at what I was actually saying, compared to everyone else: 3/ https://t.co/bibaylFwXq
    • I stuck my neck way out -- I was pretty much the only major-paper writer saying that we were being lied into war. So this is annoying 4/
    • I also hear that the Orange One says I'm demented. It's an honor to be cited.

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • At some point Trump will surely use patriotism card to distract from tainted election and effects of his anti-populist policies 1/
    • No, it won't be a false-flag terrorist attack -- too hard, and no need. It will either exploit a real terrorist attack 2/
    • or involve a US version of Falklands War -- picking a fight with foreign power to rally home base (Iraq had some elements of that) 3/
    • So anyone who thought they were voting against neocon policies was another kind of useful idiot 4/

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Why is it useful to emphasize the questionable legitimacy of the election, not "assure a smooth transition"? Several reasons 1/
    • Even if Trump can't be stopped, we need any constraints on his actions we can find -- and threat of public outrage is really all there is 2/
    • Plus anything that enhances future chance of turnaround is essential -- which means not forgetting and normalizing the subversion of 2016 3/
    • You can't put this back in the box, and trying to do so just makes the horror of the situation worse 4/
    • The thing is, the Comey letter and the Podesta inbox were, in fact, complete non-stories. Covering them as scandals was a choice. — (RT @LemieuxLGM)

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • After forcing destructive fiscal austerity when economy depressed, Rs turning to stimulus when it isn't 1/ https://t.co/VDIHYVExDi
    • This won't do much for growth, because Fed will raise rates and crowd out other spending. It will also strengthen dollar 2/
    • which will be bad for manufacturing. It's Reaganomics redux -- not the recovery of 1982-4 (which was the Fed) but the second term 3/
    • which was when people first started talking about manufacturing decline. Use of term "Rust Belt" 4/ https://t.co/iKdXCiUlZe
    • It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his support for an anti-democratic cabal depends on his not understanding it

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Question: are journos expressing shock or puzzlement over Trump/R response to CIA, Tillerson, etc really that naive? Are they only 1/
    • now beginning to grasp what we've been trying to tell them all along -- that Rs are not a normal party, that they'll do anything to win? 2/
    • If so, astonishing example of refusal to see the obvious until it bites you -- and swallows your democracy 3/
    • Faced with subversion of American democracy by foreign govt and rogue FBI, "Hillary should have run a better campaign" not a good response

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • R assault on Social Security begins. Includes sharp cut in cost of living adjustments + raising retirement age to 69 https://t.co/acMBm3fGoz
    • R assault on Social Security begins. Includes sharp cut in cost of living adjustments + raising retirement age to 69 https://t.co/acMBm3fGoz
    • Key provisions: https://t.co/tEcNGcJq63
    • Between Comey and the popular vote, you can make a strong case that Trump victory was fundamentally illegitimate. B… https://t.co/B79dMKsm2S

    5 months ago ago via Twitter


    • A lot of people seem to be settling on the narrative that Trumpism reflects a backlash against the arrogance of liberal elites. Really? 1/
    • After all, recent policy disasters -- Iraq, financial deregulation, austerity -- mainly reflected arrogance of *conservative* elites 2/
    • And these people have actually been empowered by Trumpism. Also, how can you say that liberals, who worried about wage stagnation etc. 3/
    • don't care about workers? IN terms of policy, liberals have been on white working class's side, much more than the election victors 4/
    • So what's it about? The answer seems in part to be that liberals haven't been willing to promise to bring the coal etc. jobs back 5/
    • because they cannot, in fact, be brought back -- but insisting on being realistic is perceived as elitist, arrogant, and uncaring 6/
    • Plus there's the sense that liberals don't respect the culture of the WWC. What's odd is that I don't see anything like the blatant way 7/
    • conservatives denounce "New York values", or declare that large parts of the country aren't the "real America". Sure you can find some 8/
    • dismissive remarks about flyover country or something -- but never in political discourse, from actual politicians. So what is it? 9/
    • One answer is anti-intellectualism -- the very act of trying to figure out how to solve problems makes some see you as arrogant. 10/
    • Another answer -- which you know is partly true -- is anger that liberal elites don't respect ordinary folks' prejudice. 11/
    • So what can be done? Not easy to say. What do you do if trying to help families, but refusing to ignore reality, is seen as elitist? 12/
    • The Republican message to Trump and his family: steal whatever you want, we have your back https://t.co/3zfeLlJqyF https://t.co/llGvKOKNKV — (RT @jonathanchait)

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Republicans want to undo normalization of relations with Cuba, but are fine with Putin manipulating a US election 1/
    • But it's not just that Putin was their crook; he's also friendly to well-connected billionaires. Their kind of guy. 2/
    • I have to say that media denial that it did anything wrong in this election is pretty amazing. Just to be clear: it wasn't just 1/
    • failure to convey Trump corruption; there was also the active promoting of an image of unethical behavior by HRC based on nothing 2/
    • Remember front-page stories about how Bill Clinton asked for passports to help rescue journos, and didn't get them -- played as scandal 3/
    • But I shouldn't be surprised. Basic principle: nobody ever admits having been wrong about anything. Why expect media to be different? 4/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Trump insists he won the popular vote, because admitting the truth would make him look bad. Expect this to be a pattern: 1/
    • "Mr. President: Putin has invaded Latvia!" "No he hasn't, that's a lie from the failing news media." 2/
    • "Mr. President, the financial system is collapsing!" "No it isn't, I understand business better than the so-called experts, believe me" 3/
    • "Mr. President, there's a hurricane about to swamp Florida!" "No there isn't, it's just a Chinese hoax" 4/
    • The point is that for Trump the buck always stops with someone else. The worst man we could have made president. 5/
    • A tale of two headlines https://t.co/RN6naKgKBj — (RT @NPRmelissablock)

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • On health care, Republicans have lost the luxury of irresponsibility. Before, they could denounce O'care and promise to replace 1/
    • Now they confront reality that all elements of ACA are essential; take away subsidies or mandate and tens of millions lose coverage 2/
    • Meanwhile, Ryanesque promises of Medicare reform may impress credulous journos, but will infuriate much of the country if put into effect 3/
    • You can ask Trumpists what they were thinking when they voted for these people, but they will feel betrayed if any of this happens 4/
    • At the same time, hard right will be furious if it *doesn't* happen. How will Trump resolve this dilemma? 5/
    • In 2004, GWB vote lead of 3 million = huge mandate, or so he claimed. https://t.co/8If2JVKGFN

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Anecdotally, I'm hearing about quite a few affluent, educated suburbanites who voted Trump. Even Jews! What to say, aside from "fools"? 1/
    • The answer, I'd suggest, is that these are the kind of people who might well have been swayed by the media mugging of HRC plus Comey 2/
    • The story of U.S. manufacturing is basically one of high productivity growth allowing demand to be met with ever fewer workers 1/
    • Here's what it looks like 2/ https://t.co/OBMlspcFgP
    • Nothing policy can do will bring back those lost jobs. The service sector is the future of work; but nobody wants to hear it 3/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • OK, one last word: I tweeted about this because I didn't want it just ignored and allowed to fester 1/
    • The response from Nate was exactly what we needed. I personally wanted real reasons to dismiss this scare, *not* "don't be silly" 2/
    • It now looks as if we're on much more solid ground, and can move on to the real issues 3/
    • Truly last word: conspiracies do happen. You're only a "conspiracy theorist" if -- like voting fraud types -- u won't take no for an answer.

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • OK, this is terrifying 1/ https://t.co/qnh6jd4Mom
    • The worst is that given the role of Russian hackers in the campaign, it's all too plausible. That doesn't mean it's true. 2/
    • But now that it's out there, I'd say that an independent investigation is called for. Not sour grapes -- we *need* to clear this shadow 3/
    • Honestly, I think I'd prefer to give election a clean bill of health, even though overturning would give it to the popular vote winner 4/
    • But as I said, it's out there. Without an investigation, the suspicion of a hacked election will never go away 5/
    • Maybe a false alarm? But needs to be aired. https://t.co/JzgAf1TCJY

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • People who say that Trump won because Dems neglected the interests of the white working class should look at Clay County KY 1/
    • It's 94% white. and a huge beneficiary of Obamacare -- uninsured rate fell from 27% in 2013 to 10% this year 2/
    • It also voted 86% for Trump. So what more should Dems have done, exactly? It's true that they didn't promise the coal jobs back 3/
    • But that's because nobody can honestly make that promise. So, are Dems supposed to have a platform based on promising the impossible? 4/
    • We can ask what motivated the vote in such places. But they were big beneficiaries of Dem policies. That's not condescension, just truth 5/
    • Another thought on places like rural eastern Kentucky, which voted massively against their own interests by going Trump 1/
    • One thing you hear -- I get it a lot -- is that liberals are condescending snobs who don't respect these people. But if you want to see 2/
    • incredible condescension, dismissing white poverty as a moral failing, read what conservatives have to say, e.g. 3/ https://t.co/Twol5cCavL
    • Why do such people get worked up over liberals who they imagine consider them stupid 4/
    • but keep voting for conservatives who say, outright, that they're lazy? 5/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • We're about to enter, or may already have entered, an era of corrupt governance unprecedented in U.S. history. What does it mean? 1/
    • Important to realize that the money stolen by the first family is a minor issue; $10 billion, say, skimmed off the top is rounding error 2/
    • What matters much more is the distortion of policy in directions that can be monetized. Gratuitous private investors in infrastructure 3/
    • is just the start. Expect to see lots of privatization and a general shift from transparent to murky so that favors can be traded 4/
    • And think about the pro-tyrant bias of foreign policy. Democratic regimes -- say, in Europe -- are by their own rules unable to offer 5/
    • de facto personal bribes to the U.S. president. Putin's Russia or, for that matter, Xi's China, will be fine with sending huge business 6/
    • to the profiteer-in-chief. And that will cause a tilt of U.S. policy toward authoritarian regimes. Stay alert 7/
    • Hillary Clinton's popular vote lead over Trump stands at 1,720,053 and still climbing. A strange history is being made here, very quietly. — (RT @jonathanweisman)

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • I just did a blog post on the Trump infrastructure "plan", but here's the nutshell in a brief Twitterstorm 1/
    • The tipoff here is that it *isn't* a plan for government spending on stuff we need; it's a huge tax credit to private investors 2/
    • who will supposedly be induced to build what we need. Why do this in such an indirect fashion? It won't avoid de facto increases in debt 3/
    • and it's very poorly suited to many of our real needs, which won't generate revenue. On top of that, it would probably substitute 4/
    • private projects for govt projects that would have taken place otherwise. So it's arguably not a scheme to raise investment 5/
    • so much as a scheme to sell public assets to private individuals, with the public picking up most of the tab. I.e., crony capitalism 6/
    • CA: 419k new Clinton votes, 199k Trump. Clinton's popular vote lead surpasses 1.67 million (1.3%) w/ millions left. https://t.co/j58GaxfPmH — (RT @Redistrict)

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • So, who could have seen this coming? The man who refused to release his tax returns -- getting almost no heat from the media 1/
    • is now making it clear that he won't separate himself from his business interests. His transition team is basically all lobbyists 2/
    • and his infrastructure plan, such as it is, sounds as if it's going to be largely about privatizing public assets 3/
    • In short, we're almost surely looking at all-out kleptocracy, along the lines of what happened in Russia or Ukraine. Strange, isn't it? 4/
    • After all, it's not as if we've just empowered the same people who stole all those assets abroad. Oh, wait 5/
    • A quick thought on the popular vote, which Clinton won -- quite possibly by 2 points. Why does it matter? The rules are the rules, right? 1/
    • But here's the thing: Trump clearly intends to break many of the rules, from personal accountability on up. And one justification 2/
    • will be that critics have no right to complain, because the American people chose Trump. That would be a bad argument in any case 3/
    • but it's especially bad because the people did make a choice last week -- and it was Hillary Clinton. 4/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • So, who could have seen this coming? The man who refused to release his tax returns -- getting almost no heat from the media 1/
    • is now making it clear that he won't separate himself from his business interests. His transition team is basically all lobbyists 2/
    • and his infrastructure plan, such as it is, sounds as if it's going to be largely about privatizing public assets 3/
    • In short, we're almost surely looking at all-out kleptocracy, along the lines of what happened in Russia or Ukraine. Strange, isn't it? 4/
    • After all, it's not as if we've just empowered the same people who stole all those assets abroad. Oh, wait 5/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Another word on attitudes in this terrible time. It's not helpful to be hysterical. But it's also very, very wrong to normalize events 1/
    • The simple fact is that the White House will soon be run by an anti-Semitic white supremacist. Anyone who sugar-coats this reality 2/
    • -- which, so far, seems to mean most of our major news organizations -- is continuing the same utter failure that helped get us here 3/
    • As I was saying: https://t.co/OxbV3S4Ppn

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Before you despair of the American people, remember that there were multiple thumbs on the scales against HRC 1/ https://t.co/DfWPkXM6Lf
    • And despite all of that she clearly won the popular vote solidly; the electoral college, not the people, made Trump president 2/
    • She should have won by a margin large enough that this didn't matter; we can argue why she didn't. But there is no popular Trump mandate 3/
    • It seems to me -- or maybe I'm just trying to coach myself -- that what we need now is to hold three things in creative tension 1/
    • First, don't lose the anger. A vile thing just happened, with the collusion of powerful people and institutions 2/
    • Second, however, don't give up hope. Millions of people chose Trump, but even more voted for Clinton. Talk about silent majorities 2/
    • Third, while there's hope, it will need patience. Don't let the anger burn out when it's not satisfied quickly; 3/
    • don't give up hope when it takes far too long to turn this around. Strong feelings are needed, but so is careful realism. No surrender 4/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • There's a lot of angry back and forth about how this happened, and I understand the motivation. But it's an argument that nobody will win 1/
    • What we can say is that one contributor was an incredible case of media failure, which went far beyond false equivalence 2/
    • For one thing: when people say that HRC could have won if she had taken different policy positions, how was that supposed to have worked? 3/
    • The news media devoted almost no time to policy, and literally zero to the most important issue, climate. How cld policy have mattered? 4/
    • What was covered, endlessly, was emails -- a bullshit issue, of zero relevance. More broadly, there was a sniggering hostility to HRC 5/
    • And then there was the way media allowed themselves to be played by Wikileaks, Comey, etc when it was obvious what was happening 6/
    • I'm not saying that this media fail was the whole story. But it was a *systematic* failure -- and it will probably happen again 7/
    • Trying to understand why that happened seems to me a lot more important than second-guessing campaign strategy. But here's my worry 8/
    • My guess is that very few of the editors, etc who did this will admit to themselves, or anyone else, that they did anything wrong 9/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Trying to think about the first flashpoint in the Trump years; and my guess is that it will be deportations of DREAMers. 1/
    • These will by and large be very appealing, completely Americanized young people, which might make you expect soft-pedaling 2/
    • But harshness against immigrants is part of what Trump supporters demand -- the cruelty isn't a bug, it's a feature -- so it probably 3/
    • does become actual policy very soon. And then we see how the news media cover it and the public reacts. I'm half-hopeful, half-despairing 4/
    • Another big question will be judicial (or pseudo-judicial) pursuit of Hillary Clinton. It seems ludicrous, but those "lock her up" chants 1/

    6 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Some morning-after thoughts: what hits me and other so hard isn't just the immense damage Trump will surely do, to climate above all 1/
    • There's also a vast disillusionment that as of now I think of as the end of the romantic vision of America (which I still love) 2/
    • What I mean is the notion of US history as a sort of novel in which there may be great tragedy, but there's always a happy ending 3/
    • That is, we tell a story in which at times of crisis we always find the leader -- Lincoln, FDR -- and the moral courage we need. 4/
    • It's a kind of American exceptionalism; other countries don't tell that kind of story about themselves. But I, like others, believed it 5/
    • Now it doesn't look very good, does it? But giving up is not an option. The world needs a decent, democratic America, or we're all lost 6/
    • And there's still a lot of decency in the nation -- just not as dominant as I imagined. Time to rethink, for sure. But not to surrender 7/
    • Ending the American Romance https://t.co/yfXSte9lGe

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Actually, I wasn't saying campaign was issue-free -- there's a huge gap between the candidates and the parties 1/ https://t.co/84sC48fkPY
    • What I meant was that the issues debate was between sensible stuff an evil garbage -- which meant no point in the kind of hard analysis 2/
    • that I was trained to do. Compare campaign with, say, austerity v stimulus -- even tho one side wrong - and you'll see what I mean 3/
    • My hope is that soon I can start writing, finally, about what a sensible person in the WH should do, and have anyone myself incl care 4/

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Remember the Obamacare rollout? News reports were very downbeat, but if you read @charles_gaba you knew that there was a huge surge 1/
    • Now the news is all "tight race", but early voting as reported by @RalstonReports and others is at least hinting at a big #BlueWave 2/
    • Don't count your taco trucks until they're hatched and all that -- and if you haven't, vote! But right now the actual votes look bigly D 3/
    • "They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, will stop me from being president." — (RT @RalstonReports)

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • For some reason getting mail from people complaining that I talk politics when the real issue is climate change. Um, what? 1/
    • I agree climate is issue #1. But Republicans are in complete unmovable denial, so unless they lose nothing will get done 2/
    • Specifically: if HRC wins *and* Dems take Senate, Supreme vacancy can be filled. This means that EPA can act to make Paris agreement work 3/
    • If there's a miracle and Dems take House, bigger moves possible. But bare minimum is Dem WH and Senate. 4/
    • If u don't want to talk about partisan politics, just issues -- well, wish we lived on that planet. But saving this one requires politics 5/
    • Just a reminder: Trump wanted Christie to be his Veep, but settled putting him in charge of his entire Transition. #draintheswamp — (RT @neeratanden)

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • Some Nobelist economists -- including Lucas! -- signed a letter enduring HRC. A bad sign? This guys thinks so 1/ https://t.co/GqSE6zBZio
    • So does @EuroBriefing ; both draw Brexit parallels. But parallels are not, in fact, close. The Remain campaign was all about authority 2/
    • "Vote Remain because the experts tell you to". Not at all the HRC campaign, which focuses on character -- Alicia Machado, not economists 3/
    • A better question is what good it does. Maybe some suburban R women will care. But even there, probably better to do a @JustinWolfers 4/
    • And show that the markets fear Trump. The fact is that economists don't have that much credibility, if they ever did. 5/
    • And in any case, the profession should learn to make arguments on the merits, not by invoking authority. 6/
    • During the fiscal policy debates of 2009-2011, I was shocked by how many fresh-water economists thought that 7/
    • "nobody teaches it in grad school" was a powerful argument -- especially when they showed their ignorance in the process 8/
    • But again, I think HRC campaign gets this; much more sophisticated and realistic than Remain ever was 9/
    • The F.B.I. warning seal, updated for 2016 https://t.co/CZmrNYXowC https://t.co/mRaaCQII34 — (RT @nytopinion)

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • David Frum is right about the breakdown of democratic norms in this election, whatever happens. But ... 1/ https://t.co/0cnFEDj0zY
    • it's crucial to realize (which I think he does) that this is the culmination of a process, not a sudden collapse of intact system 2/
    • The fact is that movement conservatives -- the GOP people overrun by Trump -- had already abandoned norms well before. Think about 3/
    • the Supreme Court blockade. Think about the political weaponization of the debt ceiling to extract budget concessions. 4/
    • Back under Bush, think about the purge of US attorneys -- and the way we were, you know, lied into war 5/
    • At a fundamental level, the GOP decided a long time ago that there were no boundaries, no legitimacy to opponents. This was supposed to /6
    • be in the service of right-wing ideology. Predictably it has gone out of their control and opened the door to thuggish authoritarianism 7/
    • And I think I'd better stop before I violate Godwin's Law 8/
    • Somehow the Trump FSB sex tape rumor (2016!) has me thinking of this torture scene from the movie One Two Three https://t.co/Gz7weXtLmY

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • I'm starting to think that it didn't matter at all who the parties nominated 1/ https://t.co/rSIF6sNk1F
    • Based on the way Trump recovers from anything once it's off the headlines for a few days, R voters will support anyone the party noms 2/
    • I mean, they might even vote for a sexual molester and Russian stooge who won't release his tax returns. Oh, wait 3/
    • Ds may be a bit pickier, but as long as a candidate seems reasonably qualified -- which HRC proved herself to be -- they come home too 4/
    • When people say that another R would be winning big, or another Dem winning bigger, who do they think would switch? 5/
    • Maybe fewer college-educated women would defect if Rs chose Rubio, maybe fewer blue-collar white men defect if Ds chose Biden 6/
    • But best guess is that coalitions are what they are, and turnout will be high regardless. I *think* Dem coalition is larger. We'll see 7/
    • Three words here make all of this unacceptable to the modern GOP: "evidence," "policy," and "ideas" https://t.co/y3IOZSFNOx

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • A question about Comeygate's political implications: will it actually blow back on the people who bullied Comey into betraying office? 1/
    • Think of 2012, when GOP attempts to suppress black vote seem to have led to higher A-A turnout and helped Obama. Now we have a story 2/
    • That looks worse by the hour, of bad behavior clearly designed to appease Rs; lots of anger among D-leaning voters. Since this election 3/
    • is mostly about turnout rather than persuasion -- seriously, who's undecided at this point? -- could be that Comey did HRC a favor 4/
    • Also explains why Clinton team going hard after Comey (and why pundits who urged turning other cheek were wrong): they see a mobilizer 5/
    • Un -- [insert Times-inappropriate words] -- believable https://t.co/k183F7J9UZ

    7 months ago ago via Twitter


    • @paulkrugman 3. Human nature: basically, nobody every admits having been wrong. Hey, AP won't even admit botching the Clinton Fdn story
    • @paulkrugman 4. So insisting that long-time Rs face the truth about their party is not going to work, especially coming from the she-demon
    • @paulkrugman 5. As others have said, what HRC did instead is give non-crazy Rs an off-ramp for this one candidate
    • @paulkrugman 6. And even this is good for down-ballot Dems, if Rs simply stay home
    • @paulkrugman 7. And over time, at least some Rs will ask how their party could have nominated this guy. Patience is the way
    • Germany's obsession with fiscal probity has remarkably large negative effects on Europe and the world https://t.co/ytt1HP5HR8

    9 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1. Everyone agrees: HRC's speech on Trump and the alt-right was very effective. But should she have made it an indictment of all GOPers?
    • @paulkrugman 2. I don't think so, even though she would have been justified. Two reasons: human nature, and electoral realism
    • @paulkrugman 3. Human nature: basically, nobody every admits having been wrong. Hey, AP won't even admit botching the Clinton Fdn story
    • @paulkrugman 4. So insisting that long-time Rs face the truth about their party is not going to work, especially coming from the she-demon
    • @paulkrugman 5. As others have said, what HRC did instead is give non-crazy Rs an off-ramp for this one candidate
    • @paulkrugman 6. And even this is good for down-ballot Dems, if Rs simply stay home
    • @paulkrugman 7. And over time, at least some Rs will ask how their party could have nominated this guy. Patience is the way

    9 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1. So now we have media figures fantasizing about HRC losing -- "we'd be making fun of her" -- if only she had a different opponent.
    • 2. Notice that they don't mean that a different R would have had clearly better policies. It would still have been voodoo and belligerence
    • 3. What they mean is that they would have been able to trivialize the election, making it about "gaffes" and "why aren't you likable"
    • 4. So they're outraged that their desire to ignore substance for a freak show was derailed by the nomination of an actual, scary freak
    • 5. Only in mediaworld would it be considered some kind of unfair cosmic accident that the qualified candidate with real policies is ahead

    10 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1. I'm hearing some people claim that given how bad DJT is, some of us were too hard on Bush and Romney -- that we should have saved our ire
    • 2. This is actually quite silly as a practical claim about politics -- do you really think that Trump supporters care what NYT opinion says?
    • 3. But more to the point, it misses the story. What people like me and Norm Ornstein were trying to tell you was about a GOP breaking bad
    • 4. Bush, who was dishonest in an unprecedented way -- including misleading us into war -- and Romney, who followed his lead, were harbingers
    • 5. Trumpian awfulness is basically a continuation of the process -- it's a vindication of these warnings, not a sign that we were too harsh
    • 6. And looking forward, it's important not to let Trump move the Overton window. "Better than Trump" will not be OK in future candidates.

    10 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 2. This is awesome, and I mean that in the worst way -- it means ignoring history, the reality of the Dem platform, and evidence
    • 3. History: The modern GOP was in essence built around strategy of harnessing racial resentment to sell right-wing economic policies
    • 4. Now racial resentment has run wild, leaving economic conservatives stranded. So Dems should respond by adopting their ideas? What?
    • 5. Meanwhile, HRC is indeed running on a progressive platform -- but it's hardly socialism. Restore financial regulation part way to 1980
    • 6. Restore top tax rates part way to what they were under Gerald Ford -- and do only some of what we need on climate. This is leftist?
    • 7. And remember, conservative economic policy and predictions have failed utterly in practice. Clinton tax hike followed by boom
    • 8. Bush tax cuts followed by weak recovery, then crash. Obama tax hike in 2013 followed by best job growth since 1990s.
    • 9. And Kansas "experiment" -- Brownback's term -- has been a disaster. So why should we accommodate these people?

    10 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1. But we know the answer to that q, and have for a while; all this incident shows is his lack of self-control https://t.co/rY0uhOywJn
    • 2. The question is, what kind of people are non-crazy Rs who still support Trump, and for that matter refuse to endorse his opponent?
    • 3. It's not hard to see why they won't: turning on a nominee, no matter how horrible, would do huge damage to their careers
    • 4. So their continued Trump support, or even silence, is understandable in terms of self-interest. Understandable, but also despicable.

    10 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 1. Commentary in the age of Trump: what can you do? You cannot argue with Trump supporters, who live in perfect epistemic closure.
    • 2. Even if we had tapes of Putin giving the man his marching orders, supporters would just claim they were fake and media biased.
    • 3. Also there's the chump factor: people simply will not accept that they were that badly misled -- sort of political "when prophecy fails"
    • 4. But you can, maybe, embarrass the bothsiders -- at least somewhat deter the urge to be "balanced" when there is no balance.
    • 5. Sometimes, after all, the media do drop their pretense of balance. Unfortunately, it tends to be for the wrong things

    10 months ago ago via Twitter


    • 2/ low interest rates on government debt, short- and long-term, are a good indicator of overall credit conditions. Obviously private agents
    • 3/ can't borrow as cheaply as the US and German governments. Much less clear whether this risk premium has gone up. But the real point
    • 4/ surely is that from a policy point of view *it doesn't matter*. Low short-term rates make conventional monetary policy ineffective;
    • 5/ low long-term rates make government borrowing attractive. So it's the low government borrowing costs that make the case for fiscal
    • 6/ expansion, whatever is going on with risk premiums -- unless you have some way to sharply reduce those premiums, which you don't

    11 months ago ago via Twitter