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Krugman on the efforts to get bipartisanship of the economic recovery plan: "There is no middle ground"

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Dear people in the White House:

Please listen to Paul Krugman. Please. And, stop listening to David Broder.

Yesterday, in response to Josh Marshall's post "Dim Broder," Krugman ripped apart the bi-partisan blather of Broder, the painful king of the conventional wisdom:

But the part that really got me was Broder saying that we need “the best ideas from both parties.”

You see, this isn’t a brainstorming session — it’s a collision of fundamentally incompatible world views. If one thing is clear from the stimulus debate, it’s that the two parties have utterly different economic doctrines. Democrats believe in something more or less like standard textbook macroeconomics; Republicans believe in a doctrine under which tax cuts are the universal elixir, and government spending is almost always bad.

Obama may be able to get a few Republican Senators to go along with his plan; or he can get a lot of Republican votes by, in effect, becoming a Republican. There is no middle ground.
Got that? I know Krugman is a Nobel Prize winning economist, but what he wrote today really isn't that complicated. Bipartisanship doesn't work when there isn't a middle ground. You won the election. People want Obama's economic philosophy, not the GOP's.

Krugman is on your side (as am I). Broder isn't.

Thanks for listening.

P.S. It's not just Broder. Reporters and pundits have become obsessed with the topic of bipartisanship, like it's the only thing that matters. They're working themselves into a frenzy over it. That's partly because it's the only thing they can get their heads around. Most of them aren't directly affected by the economic downturn, so they focus on politics, not the policy. But, we are in the middle of an economic crisis like we haven't seen since the 1930s. And, the GOPers sure now how to distract the D.C. press corps by talking about bipartisanship, but not actually practicing it. The Republicans created the economic crisis, but now, with the help of the traditional media, they're avoiding responsibility. Read this statement from CNN's Dana Bash yesterday:
We've been talking about it with regard to the stimulus package and why didn't he get any Republican votes and why didn't he get any Republican votes, and will he get any Republican votes this week in the Senate. And those are important issues in terms of the bipartisan tone with regard to the substance of what they're doing here in Washington, which is critically important.
Critically important? That's absurd. What's critically important is saving the economy from tanking and to create jobs -- a matter lost on Ms. Bash.

But, there's more. Josh Marshall reports that CQ's Craig Crawford suggests Gingrich for Secretary of HHS. Yesterday, Brownsox at DailyKos told us that Marc Ambinder from the Atlantic and Karen Tumulty from Time are talking about Mitt Romney for the Health Czar. It seems like all the talking heads have become self-appointed experts on bipartisanship -- and if Obama isn't bipartisan enough for them, he's a failure.

So, again, people at the White House, please listen to Krugman who is an economist and knows of what he speaks. It's going to be hard, but you have to ignore the painful talking heads. Save the economy. Create jobs. That's what matters to the American people.

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