Professor Krugman, on Willard Romney’s “Post-Truth Campaign“:
Suppose that President Obama were to say the following: “Mitt Romney believes that corporations are people, and he believes that only corporations and the wealthy should have any rights. He wants to reduce middle-class Americans to serfs, forced to accept whatever wages corporations choose to pay, no matter how low.”
How would this statement be received?…
I, for one, would die a happy woman.
Quite a few Media Village courtiers would also depart this life, or at least be institutionalized on mass-suicide watch.
I believe, and hope, that it would be almost universally condemned, by liberals as well as conservatives…
… Over all, Mr. Obama’s positions on economic policy resemble those that moderate Republicans used to espouse. Yet Mr. Romney portrays the president as the second coming of Fidel Castro and seems confident that he will pay no price for making stuff up.
Welcome to post-truth politics.
Why does Mr. Romney think he can get away with this kind of thing? Well, he has already gotten away with a series of equally fraudulent attacks. In fact, he has based pretty much his whole campaign around a strategy of attacking Mr. Obama for doing things that the president hasn’t done and believing things he doesn’t believe…
Good column, though — read the whole thing. At least someone with a (modest) bully pulpit is pointing out that Willard “Mitt” Romney is a lying liar, who lies with malice aforethought. Maybe start the weekend festivities off well; chain-mail your low-information relatives and acquaintances.
Ah, duelling sun-up morning threads.
Read Krugman last night. Delighted that he got in good jab at PolitiFarce too.
Well, well. It’s not yet 2012 and Romney has been publicly labeled a liar. Maybe that’s progress.
And then there is Ron Paul who fits more than one of the 24 types of libertarians [cribbed from a commenter here, forgot who]:
And Newt Gingrich, who has a world of baggage.
Those are the front runners, right?
As the grassroots, we have an obligation to shift the narrative in our daily interactions. Every time someone brings up corporations in a positive light, remind them that a recognized corporate charter is a creature of government, authorized by statute, with absolutely zero accountability ascribed to shareholders or third parties on most bad acts by the officers, employees or agents.
Remind the corporate fluffers that the corporation is immortal.
When the corporate fluffer huffs and goes into the “shareholders can vote to change management, remind them that most corporate shares ate held by institutional investors – mutual funds, hedge funds, other corporations, and that those are part of the problem.
When the corporate fluffer tells you that the money winds up in the national economy anyway, remind them that multinationals consist of investors from all over the world, including foreign behemoths, and ask why vengeful foreigners in Germany, the UK, Hong Kong, Japan, Dubai, France and Italy should be able to use money to shift our policy.
Wait, so Mitt Romney doesn’t want to reduce middle-class Americans to serfdom? Because it seems pretty obvious that he and most Republicans do, they just don’t say it out loud.
I think even the Village was shocked at Willard’s blatant lie in that first TV ad. But of course, they will get used to it, because IOKIYAR.
And a person’s character used to be judged by the worth of his word. Republicans have shit all over that, too.
It really is Obama derangement syndrome, but I don’t see them giving it up since no one has punished them for it. Dem congresscritters are looking like Stockholm victims.
In spite of his efforts to hide, dodge, and obfuscate, we now know a number of basic things about Romney: he’s a shape-shifter, he’s a liar, he’s very, very, very wealthy. I think a campaign against him that continues to beat those very specific three things would be successful.
mining city guy
Of course Romney is a lying liar. He is a Republican. Republicans have been lying liars since the time of Reagan, although I will admit that with him dementia may have actually caused him to believe that the lies he was telling were in fact the truth
Can we really believe that anything written negatively about Willard Mitt will stick to him? He’s been acclaimed as the one from a bunch of misfits and clowns. Otherwise there would have been organized attacks on him just as there have been on anyone leading the pack. All I know is his very presence on screen highly irritates me more than anyone else I have ever seen run for any election.
Ummm…right. Replace Willard “Mitt” Romney’s name with that of any number of Republican politicians,talk radio gasbags or pundits/propagandists. I loves me some Krugthulu, but the fact that Republicans lie for political advantage – and not venial lies but outright huge whoppers – does not constitute a news flash or great insight. They do it because it works, and generally speaking the bigger the lie the more their base believes it. And they will go on doing so for as long as it profits them; after all, why would they stop doing what has worked so well for them for the last thirty years and longer?
I encourage Willard to continue to lie shamelessly. It helps cement his public perception as a phony.
@mining city guy:
Yes, lying is part of the generic Republican campaign, but Romney 1) has lied himself, publicly, rather than passing it off to an underling, 2) has stated publicly that he doesn’t see a difference between ‘true’ and ‘false’, 3) has obviously sold his soul to Satan. Putting it all together, I’d say it crosses a red line.
@Shalimar: I, for one, would not have a problem with a commercial saying approximately the same thing. I guess I’m not one of the liberals that Krugman supposes would condemn such a thing. Which is precisely why Krugman would be an economic advisor, were I running, and not a campaign manager. I’m not sure that Krugman understands exactly what type of stake this vampire requires. Krugman posts and other factual demolitions of clearly-debunked Republican ideo-nomics are not going to be enough. Not that I want them to stop. But it won’t be rational argumentation alone that carries the day. For better or worse.
hells littlest angel
Our public discourse gives entirely too much “respect” to religious sons of bitches. If Romney were an atheist, pundits of every political persuasion would be calling him a liar. But because he professes to believe in the Grand Exalted Kobold, or whatever the fuck his deity is named, to call him a liar is to impugn his “faith.”
I don’t believe lying is inherently Republican – even “modern” Republican – but their political televangelist cocoon has removed any hazard from lying – in fact, it has actively encouraged increasingly outlandish lies, as those accomplished at inventing them have been rewarded with clicks, references, even tv gigs (Erick springs to mind).
The reason this has passed into the Routine (and therefore unnoticeable) is that the media outlets outside Fox are continually pressured to equate balance with fairness (a distinction never applied to Fox) (Look at this schmutz from Politifact for a perfect example). Those of us who are political nuts see this plainly – but those who do not (i.e. the majority of American voters) won’t.
This article’s premis is BS.
We have been in post-truth politics for quite awhile because of our lazy media. Just to a couple of exmaples to refresh your memories: “Swiftboating”, “I invented the internet”.
Don’t know if it will happen, but there is chatter that a La Follette might run against Walker in Wisc. Ha, ha, ha.
And the recallers have almost enough signatures to put the very deserving Lt.Gov. on the ballot, too.
Gore never said he “invented the Internet” dimwit.
It was a good column.
OT: the 2012 BJ calendar–is it available for preorder yet? The link still takes one to the 2011 edition.
@MattF: That particular red line was crossed a long, long time ago, if one counts lying by omission as a lie. Richard Nixon got elected in 1968 partially because he had a “secret plan” to end the Vietnam War. The part that he forgot to mention was that it would take another four years and an additional 20,000 Americans KIA…
Unless my snark meter is busted I think that is the point he was making. Republicans spread the “I invented the Internet” lie & never got called on it.
Would someone please help me with this:
1. Was the corporate personhood initially a clerical mistake or an unintended consequence in a Supreme Court ruling? I
2. If so so, why was that that not noticed long ago? Was it not taken advantage of right away and became water over the dam in subsequent rulings? Which ones started the “movement”?
3. If it was a error, why is it not declared null and void now? Can’t there be a Replay/Recall button? Too many cases based on it now for relief?
mittens is running against a strawman made up of equal parts karl marx and “mitt romney from 10 years ago”.
It’s not that Romney is a liar. Like all of the GOP, he must buy into the Official Party Line that Obama is an untrustworthy anti colonial un American exotic aristocratic sozhul ist who is threatening to impose an utterly alien vision and economic apocalypse on Real White Non Ghey Christian Americans(tm).
The GOP has been bleating this tune since Obama was nominated, and they will stick with it to the bitter end. Ironically, joining in the chorus of this stupidity may be one of the few things that Mitt does not flip flop on.
My view of the world moves with it’s assembled inhabitants. Lately I’ve been doing more reading of comments under articles just to see what those inhabitants think. Most times, I’m surprised (but not shocked) at the level of willful & knowing dishonesty I see people spouting. It didn’t used to be this way. Oh sure, spinning has always been here as has over the top statements and innuendo. But there was always some adult willing to step up to the plate and call a lie a lie and try to shame the person who pushed the lie.
That’s missing in today’s media. Well, other than K-thug here. Most the media are now PolitiFact whores. They want that invite to Sally Graham’s party so they won’t ever admit publicly to the lies their adored flufees make.
It didn’t start with our generation, nor the one prior to us. But it’s gotten magnified in our time. The Phaux News effect run wild. And the willingly blind and intentionally ignorant run merrily along singing in the choir.
That’s what Democrats SHOULD be saying. Every day. The main reason why the left has been marginalized, even dismissed as serious people, is because we let the Ann Coulters and Rush Limbaughs ridicule us back in the 90s and 2000s and we did not fight back. The Democrats in power at the time are the ones who should have used their positions to push back hard but they didn’t. Shame on them!
@Palli: As I recall, it’s an idea that arose from the _notes_ on a Supreme Court case, rather than from the case itself. But since it has been cited ever since, it passes for doctrine now.
If only Obama would bullypulpit say such things. Then everything would be ok.
This is why the left blogosphere sucks. They are expert victim bashers. Three or four decades of republican controlled media vomiting out utter falsehoods, and it’s those terrible democrats who are being weaklings.
Good for Kthug for using his megaphone to reach people who may not read Sargent or Benen, both of whom have been attacking this point for weeks.
Yes we can! I think the exact reason he’s having so much difficulty getting traction in the primary despite his heir apparent status is because he has a bunch of shit stuck to him. Nobody outside the LDS is genuinely excited about him because he’s not the kind of guy who anyone gets excited about, and people are willing to believe bad things about him. Even worse, he doesn’t seem to have been able to charm the Villagers, so they’re not going to give him the same kind of absolute free pass they gave W and McCain. He may not be the velcro candidate, but he’s going to be a lot closer to that than to teflon.
He is also pointing out the following:
Which the Obots seem to ignore in their zeal for pragmatic solutions. What a bunch of maroons.
And the problem with that is …. ?
If we go with your construction, we need to immediately repeal the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and re-institute the Democrat-preferred Jim Crow laws, because the majority of Congress members who voted for civil rights were Republican, so by definition civil rights are bad.
Grow the fuck up, loser.
I’ve posted the same thing here and been rightly corrected: no, most of the people who voted for the CRA were Democrats. For every conservative Dem who voted against it, there were more Dems who voted for it.
(Not that this invalidates your point – Republicans were different back then, and the guys Krugman was referring to, like those Republicans who voted for civil rights, were Eisenhower/Rockefeller type, pro-New Deal moderates, not a bad thing at all).
But a much higher percentage of Republicans voted for it — 80+% of Republicans in both houses of Congress, but more like 60+% (if that) of Democrats. The filibuster against the law was run by 18 Democrats and only 1 Republican. The numbers are even worse if you look by region.
So, again, if we are going to reject Republicans and all their works, we have to reject the CRA, because it wouldn’t have passed without their votes.
I’m aware of that, just still thought the “majority of Congress members” point was worth the quibble. And I would also say it’s telling that the Act passed with considerable pressure from a Democratic president … a couple decades after another Democratic president, Truman, put the civil rights issue front and center for the first time in years with his commission on the matter (prompting the original Dixiecrat third party).
I don’t reject Republicans and all their works, FTR. They helped a lot back then and good for them. We could sure use Republicans like that today.
I think we’re pretty much in agreement that the meme that Obama is like a Republican of 40 years ago and therefore is BAD BAD BAD is a really stupid one. It drives me nuts every time it comes up because the people saying it are either completely ignorant of actual recent history or are just lying for effect.
I’m pretty sure which one Loviatar is doing — after all, s/he just got his/her privileges back after being banned.
I thought Obama ran and was elected as a Democrat.
If the country wanted to elect a moderate Republican president they would have elected one.
And here is where your bullshit argument falls apart as you use Republican strawmans to try and make your assine point. Civil Rights/Jim Crow era Democrats are now Republicans. Try again asshole.
Thats not what your mom said last night.
A Humble Lurker
Well, who could argue with that sound logic?
@Lojasmo: reading comprehension much?