Krugman’s post is entitled “My Unicorn Problem,” and I’m not gonna bother to excerpt it — you can read the whole thing at the NYT link above or peruse AL’s summary below. The title is a good shorter; it touches on a running battle that’s been playing out in comments here for weeks between Sanders and Clinton supporters.
I get Krugman’s frustration, I really do. But here’s a portion of his post that disturbs me, and I sincerely hope it doesn’t reflect the thinking of Team Clinton:
If we’re going to have any kind of radical change in the next few years and probably the next couple of decades, it will come from the right, not the left.
That’s defeatism. We’ve had our radical right experiment. It was called Reaganism. It started when I was in high school, and it got seriously pushed back for the first time in decades — thanks to President Obama and the Democrats — when my daughter was in high school.
And now it’s time to resume the defensive crouch and concede the change agenda to the motherfucking Republicans in the name of realism? Fuck that! The pendulum needs to swing a lot further to the left.
There’s a reason support for Sanders’ candidacy is deeper than expected. If the hopes are so high, it’s only because the despair is so deep. And sneering comments to the contrary, it’s not because dumb-collitch-kids-want-free-stuff, hur-hur-hur.
It’s also middle-aged, middle-class folks like my husband and me jokingly discussing retirement as a hobo adventure if the shaky-ass economy tanks our crappy 401ks and destroys our home equity again. It’s the people who are squeezed between trying to do right by their kids and looking after aging parents.
Last night on CNN, I heard flop sweat-soaked clown Marco Rubio talk about raising the retirement age for Social Security. Where does that moron imagine all the 68-year-olds are going to work? There’s a crisis in older adult employment that no one ever talks about. And if more older folks hang onto their jobs out of necessity, where are the young folks who graduate under a mound of crushing debt going to work?
We need new thinking about all of these problems. Clinton appears to get that more than her most ardent supporters do. Sanders has succeeded in dragging her to the left a bit, as many hoped, and more — he’s making a real fight of it. But Krugman only seems to acknowledge the marketing dilemma:
“No, we can’t — at best, maybe a little” isn’t all that inspiring to people who want uplift. Realistically, the slogan [for Clinton] should actually be “They shall not pass”, which actually could be inspiring. But that’s probably for the general.
Yes, preventing further Republican vandalism and defending President Obama’s accomplishments are crucial goals. But should Clinton win the nomination, I hope she’ll take the Sanders phenomenon to heart and push for more than just standing pat. She damn well better if she wants to win.