New York Times columnist Paul Krugman bashed the GOP as radical on fellow lefty Tavis Smiley's PBS talk show on Monday. Krugman used the appearance as an opportunity to bash Republicans, as the MRC's Paul Bremmer pointed out, while complaining that the American people have not yet become "sufficiently outraged" over the budget cuts brought by sequestration, adding: "And in general I think the public hasn’t really fully appreciated just how radical the Republican agenda is and that may take longer....This is a much more fanatical Republican party than most people have yet seemed to realize."
Below are transcripts of the relevant segments:
TAVIS SMILEY: So I take from your comment now that the American people have not been sufficiently outraged as yet. Which raises two questions: why not and when?
PAUL KRUGMAN: Well, ok, I think the answer is that the public hasn’t really seen the full impact. So far, we’ve had a lot of chipping at the edges but people haven’t really seen the impact, particularly with the sequester and all that. The real problems of essential government services being cut back hasn’t started to bite yet. That will take time. And in general I think the public hasn’t really fully appreciated just how radical the Republican agenda is and that may take longer. I think we probably have to wait several months. I think people who thought that there were going to be – there was going to be a mass uprising against the sequester the moment it kicked in were misjudging. This is a much more fanatical Republican party than most people have yet seemed to realize. So give it some time.
SMILEY: For those who think that issues like the debt ceiling and sequestration are really phantom issues -- phantom issues masquerading as a conversation about austerity, you’d say what?
KRUGMAN: Well, no, I’d say that those are-- I mean, they are – they are crazy, right? This is no way to run any country, certainly not the greatest nation on earth. That we are-- we have a party that basically lost an election, there was a referendum on what kind of policies we are going to have. What are we going to do about the social safety net, what are we going to do about taxes on the wealthy? They lost, but partly because of the quirks of our districting system, they still retain half of one piece of the government. And they’re using that to threaten the United States with one crisis after another. It’s actually – it’s pure hostage-taking. And this is no way to live. There is no economic reason to be having a sequester. There is no economic reason to be having a series of debt crises. This is all about truly unacceptable political behavior.