Krugman on Obama’s State of the Union: ‘The less he says about the deficit the better’
“What do you want to hear in the State of the Union?” Hayes asked Paul Krugman, the New York Times economic columnist and Nobel prize winner.
“What I’d like to hear, I’m not going to hear. I’d like to hear a full-throated endorsement of more stimulus.”
He explained instead what he did not want to hear: “This whole business with the sequester, all of this is, this is not the time for any of this, and the less he says about the deficit, the better. I mean I was really gratified by the second inaugural, because he said almost nothing about the deficit. He finally broke out of that beltway obsession with the deficit. So if he talks about other things, the middle class, inequality, climate, and not about what we need to balance the budget, that’s what I’m mostly hoping for.”
And the economically naïve will walk right in without seeing it. It sounds so reasonable, like advice we've heard all our lives from people we respect: "Live within your means." Republicans want to use this misapplied metaphor to enrich those who are already wealthy. Democrats want to use Republicans' efforts against them in a form of political jiu-jitsu as the Republican policies wreck the economy. But it is the middle class that will pay the price for these political maneuvers.