Should-Read: Paul Krugman: Donald the Unready

Should-Read: Paul Krugman: Donald the Unready: “Betsy DeVos… doesn’t know basic education terms, doesn’t know about federal statutes governing special education…

…but thinks school officials should carry guns to defend against grizzly bears. Monica Crowley… withdrew after it was revealed that much of her past writing was plagiarized. Many other national security positions remain unfilled…. Rex Tillerson… [was] apparently unaware that he was in effect threatening to go to war if China called his bluff. Do you see a pattern here? It was obvious to anyone paying attention that the incoming administration would be blatantly corrupt. But would it at least be efficient in its corruption?…

The typical Trump nominee, in everything from economics to diplomacy to national security, is ethically challenged, ignorant about the area of policy he or she is supposed to manage and deeply incurious. Some… are even as addicted as their boss to internet conspiracy theories. This isn’t a team that will compensate for the commander in chief’s weaknesses; on the contrary, it’s a team that will amplify them. Why does this matter? If you want a model for how the Trump-Putin administration is likely to function (or malfunction), it’s helpful to recall what happened during… Bush-Cheney….

The last Republican administration was also characterized by cronyism, the appointment of unqualified but well-connected people to key positions…. Consider the botched occupation of Iraq…. And what will happen when we face a crisis? Remember, Katrina was the event that finally revealed the costs of Bush-era cronyism to all…. Real crises need real solutions. They can’t be resolved with a killer tweet, or by having your friends in the F.B.I. or the Kremlin feed the media stories that take your problems off the front page…. An administration unprecedented in its corruption, but also completely unprepared to govern. It’s going to be terrific, let me tell you.

January 24, 2017


Brad DeLong
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