Monday, September 12, 2011

Better Feet Than Brain....

Glenn Reynolds presents a... curious ad hominem attack:
Everybody's angry, to judge from my email, about Paul Krugman’s typo-burdened 9/11 screed. Don’t be angry. Understand it for what it is, an admission of impotence from a sad and irrelevant little man. Things haven’t gone the way he wanted lately, his messiah has feet of clay — hell, forget the “feet” part, the clay goes at least waist-high — and it seems likely he’ll have even less reason to like the coming decade than the last, and he’ll certainly have even less influence than he’s had.
What caused Reynolds to get his knickers in such a twist? Krugman's assertion,
The atrocity should have been a unifying event, but instead it became a wedge issue. Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war the neocons wanted to fight, for all the wrong reasons.
Reynolds could attempt to rehabilitate the reputations of Kerik, Giuliani or G.W., but perhaps that would take too much effort - perhaps he agrees that his heroes have fallen. Whatever his reason, he chooses to sneer, "Your hero fell, as well", painting President Obama as Krugman's messiah with "feet of clay". How many seconds would you have to spend, actually reading Krugman's columns or blog, to recognize the flaw in Reynolds' argument?

I suspect that Reynolds never reads Krugman, and his logic goes something like this:
1. I don't like President Obama.
2. I don't like Paul Krugman.
3. Therefore Paul Krugman must like President Obama.
But for those who read Krugman, who saw him question and challenge Obama during the primary campaign that led to his nomination, and who have seen him challenge the Obama Administration from day one on its economic agenda and legislative compromises, the notion that Krugman worships Obama is beyond ludicrous. It's almost as if Reynolds is trying to embarrass himself.

My prediction: The overwhelming majority of Reynolds' readers won't care. They like his vitriol and, as with Reynolds in his screed against Krugman, don't actually care about facts or accuracy. They, like Reynolds, would rather idolize those who happily exploit a national tragedy than call them out.

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