June 3, 2003

FACT-CHECKING PAUL KRUGMAN: Wunderkinder and Donald Luskin are on the job. I love this bit from Luskin:

Paul Krugman’s New York Times column,

The public was told that Saddam posed an imminent threat. If that claim was fraudulent, the selling of the war is arguably the worst scandal in American political history — worse than Watergate, worse than Iran- contra.

Paul Krugman’s New York Times column,
January 29, 2002:

I predict that in the years ahead Enron, not Sept. 11, will come to be seen as the greater turning point in U.S. society.

Heh. Of course, Krugman needs to address all those statements about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction that the Clinton administration made — or maybe he figures that, since they didn’t do anything about the problem, it doesn’t matter?

Meanwhile David Hogberg notes that Krugman is engaged in Maureen-Dowdesque selective quotation.

UPDATE: Roger Simon says the problem isn’t the mistakes, but the heavy-handed politics:

But Krugman must get the demon Bush, using any pretext he can, the WMDs in this case. But let’s give Paul his due. Let’s stipulate, even though we have no way of knowing at this point, the presence of these weapons was exaggerated by the administration; I still say—so what? Saddam’s gone. It was worth it. And I ask Krugman this simple question: What if some leader had used a similar ruse to get rid of Hitler in 1940? What would he think of that?

Prediction: We won’t be hearing a Krugman answer to that one any time soon.

That’s a safe one, I think.

UPDATE: Andrew Philip Winerman emails:

Roosevelt DID use something of a ruse. He used Pearl Harbor to get us into the war (with Japan) and then attacked Germany first. Granted, Germany declared war on the US two days after we declared war on Japan. Still, the public was demanding Japanese blood in the weeks after Pearl Harbor, not German, and Roosevelt made Europe his first priority.

True enough. And that’s why FDR is reviled by — oh, wait. . . .

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