Paul Krugman's pathetic defense of Gavin Newsom
Category: News & PoliticsVia: texan1211 • 3 weeks ago • 1 comments
By: Zachary Faria (MSN)
New York Times columnist Paul Krugman has launched his defense of California Gov. Gavin Newsom as the recall election nears. Naturally, Krugman thinks California is a progressive paradise.
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California is a "progressive success story," Krugman says, because the state taxes the rich, spends more on social programs, and increased its minimum wage. California's high GDP and the fact that highly educated, high-income workers flock to the state is proof that California is actually doing great.
Shockingly, Krugman does at least acknowledge that the state has the highest poverty rate in the nation along with a massive homelessness issue. But he chalks that up to NIMBYism, which he asserts is a bipartisan problem.
"Some progressives — among them Governor Newsom — are strong advocates of housing expansion," Krugman reasons, "So California's big policy failure shouldn't be an issue in this recall election. What's on the line are its policy successes."
And that's all he has to say on the issue. There is a lack of acknowledgment that lower- and middle-class working families are fleeing California for more affordable situations (not to mention better quality of life) in Texas, Florida, and Idaho. It seems lost on Krugman that California just lost a congressional seat for the first time in its history after the 2020 census, not because there arent enough housing units, but because a million residents have left on net for more affordable states whose cities aren't being overwhelmed by rampant property and violent crime and drug-addled homeless encampments.
Krugman seems to think that this very real problem doesn't mater because even if the Middle Class can no longer stomach the trade-offs of living in California, the "highly educated" like himself are moving in, and California's GDP is high.
Krugman is inadvertently making the case for two propositions, at least one of which he probably doesn't believe. The first is that income inequality doesn't matter in California, and therefore shouldn't matter anywhere else, either. Perhaps he is right, but note that no other state is testing this proposition quite so vigorously. California's progressive policies have led to the greatest inequality in America — a virtual Third World situation in which only the very rich and the very poor remain behind as everyone else runs in terror.
The second inference from Krugman's careless argument is that California is proudly governed by liberal elitists, for liberal elitists, and the rest of its citizens are welcome to leave since they don't or didn't matter anyway, as long as those highly paid and educated people keep coming.
Meanwhile, the idea that NIMBYism is a bipartisan problem is irrelevant in California because Democrats have held uninterrupted and unified control of the state since 2011. Democrats have controlled the state legislature since 1970, with the exception of a brief hiccup in the State Assembly from 1995-1996. They currently have a veto-proof majority in both houses of the legislature. There is no Republican upon whom to blame any of the state's very large problems, including this one.
California is becoming increasingly unaffordable for residents who are not the "highly educated, high-income" workers that Krugman boasts are moving in. This is not some issue that can be thrown out in favor of California's "policy successes." Paul Krugman could certainly move to California and be just fine. But the California dream is becoming unreachable for lower- and middle-class Californians (which disproportionately affects black and Latino residents, in case you were wondering).
Newsom's COVID hypocrisy may be what made the recall possible, but the cost of living is the fundamental issue in California, and it should be the fundamental issue in the recall. Krugman is right that California is a "progressive success story." And that should be an indictment of him, Newsom, and the California Democratic Party's progressive agenda.
Tags:Beltway Confidential, Opinion, California, Gavin Newsom, California recall, Progressivism, Paul Krugman, New York Times
Original Author:Zachary Faria
Original Location:Paul Krugman's pathetic defense of Gavin Newsom