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When Was It Ever Different?

Paul Krugman thinks that the 1989-1992 George H.W. Bush administration was a different kind of Republican. He writes:

Steven Pearlstein is shrill: He writes:

The recent attacks by Republican leaders and their ideological fellow-travelers on the effort to reform the health-care system have been so misleading, so disingenuous, that they could only spring from a cynical effort to gain partisan political advantage. By poisoning the political well, they’ve given up any pretense of being the loyal opposition. They’ve become political terrorists, willing to say or do anything to prevent the country from reaching a consensus on one of its most serious domestic problems.

He’s right, of course. But when, really, has it been any different? Under the previous administration every major policy initiative — and I mean every one, from tax cuts to Social Security privatization to the Iraq war — was sold on false pretenses; there was never any effort to resolve problems, as opposed to exploiting those problems to further an unrelated agenda. Terrorists attack America? Now we can have the war we always wanted!

So now that the same people are in opposition, nobody should be surprised that they are willing to say anything to block efforts to actually deal with problems. Anyone who is surprised hasn’t been paying attention since, oh, 1993.

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