Cowards, not madness, are destroying America

Paul Krugman

Paul Krugman


In July, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey made some powerful and wise statements about the COVID-19 vaccine. “I want people to be vaccinated,” she declared. “That’s the cure. It prevents everything.” She went on to say that unvaccinated people “disappointed us.”

Three months later, Ivy instructed state agencies not to cooperate with the federal COVID-19 vaccination obligation.

Ivy’s swift journey from common sense and respect for science to destructive partisan nonsense (the nonsense killing tens of thousands of Americans) was not unique. On the contrary, it was a summary of the post-issue journey of the entire Republican Party, from tax cuts on the 2020 elections to big lie.

When talking about Republican moral descent, climate change is a hoax and tends to focus on obvious radicals like conspiracy theorists who claim that January 6 is a false flag operation. But without the cowards, Crazy wouldn’t have fully pushed the Republican agenda. And at this point, madness and cowards essentially make up the entire elected wing of the party.

For example, consider the claim that tax cuts are in their own interest. George HW Bush, who opposed Ronald Reagan in 1980 for a Republican presidential nomination, called the claim “Voodoo Economic Policy.” Everything we’ve seen since then says he was right. But Bush quickly fell, accepting the claim that by 2017 even “moderates” like Susan Collins would reduce Trump’s tax cuts rather than increase their budget deficits. (It increased the deficit.)

Or consider climate change. Most recently, in 2008 John McCain campaigned for the president as part of a proposal to cap US greenhouse gas emissions. But at this point, Republicans in Congress have united against substantive actions to limit global warming, and 30 GOP senators say human activity is causing climate change. It completely denies overwhelming scientific evidence.

Falsehoods that are detrimental to American politics tend to share a similar life history. They start ironically, spread through disinformation, and surrender as Republicans who know the truth decide to lie and tolerate.

Take the stolen election claim. Donald Trump had no evidence on his side, but he didn’t care. He just wanted to take power, or if he couldn’t, promulgated a lie that would help him stay in control of the Republican Party. Despite the lack of evidence and all attempts to create or create a case failed, propaganda’s steady heartbeat persuaded the overwhelming majority of Republicans that Joe Biden’s victory was illegal.

And the establishment of the Republican Party, which initially opposed big lie, became quiet and began to encourage lies. So last week, The Wall Street Journal published a letter from Trump to the editors full of demonstrable lies, without correction or fact checking — and in doing so, a new, prominent platform for those lies. Gave.

The current Republican journey on COVID-19 (a party that opposes vaccines and objectively promotes pandemics) follows the same trajectory.

Republicans like Ron DeSantis and Greg Abbott argue that opposition to vaccination requirements is about freedom, but both governors say they have tried to thwart private companies’ demands for vaccination of customers and staff. The facts show that this is a smoke screen. Apparently, the anti-vaccine movement began as a politically motivated sabotage. After all, the success of the vaccination campaign that ended the pandemic would have been good political news for Biden.

By the way, it should be noted that this sabotage has been rewarded, at least so far. There are multiple reasons why many Americans remain unvaccinated, but there is a strong correlation between county political tendencies and both vaccination and mortality in recent months. And while COVID sustainability, in turn, is a drag on the economy, it is an important factor in lowering Biden’s approval rate.

But more important to the Republican internal dynamics, many of the party’s bases claim that demanding vaccination against COVID-19 is somehow a tyrannical invasion of personal decisions. Is in favor of. In fact, many Republican voters seem to oppose the long-standing requirement that parents vaccinate their children with other infectious diseases.

And, to be honest, elected Republicans like Ivy, who first spoke in favor of the vaccine, fold, even though they must know that doing so would cause many deaths. And surrendered to the radicals.

It’s unclear exactly why timidity has become commonplace among elected Republicans who aren’t devoted to extremists. But if you want to understand how Republicans have become such a threat to everything America should support, cowards are at least as important a factor as madness.

This article was originally published in The New York Times.

This article was originally published in Palm Beach Post. Commentary: Cowards, not madness, are destroying America

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