Posts Tagged ‘Paul Krugman’

USA | Nobelpristagaren Paul Krugman, som varit en av Barack Obamas starkaste kritiker på vänsterkanten, har omvärderat presidenten.

Roling Stone - issue 1220 - October 23 2015

I en längre artikel i Rolling Stone om Obamas år i Vita huset lyfter Krugman framför allt fram hälsovårdsreformen, hanteringen av den finansiella krisen och ekonomin som de områden där presidentens politik haft störst positiv effekt.

När det gäller Affordable Care Act, eller Obamacare, skriver han bl.a. följande:

We won’t have the full data on 2014 until next year’s census report, but multiple independent surveys show a sharp drop in the number of Americans without health insurance, probably around 10 million, a number certain to grow greatly over the next two years as more people realize that the program is available and penalties for failure to sign up increase.

It’s true that the Affordable Care Act will still leave millions of people in America uninsured. For one thing, it was never intended to cover undocumented immigrants, who are counted in standard measures of the uninsured.


Still, Obamacare means a huge improvement in the quality of life for tens of millions of Americans – not just better care, but greater financial security. And even those who were already insured have gained both security and freedom, because they now have a guarantee of coverage if they lose or change jobs.

What about the costs? Here, too, the news is better than anyone expected. In 2014, premiums on the insurance policies offered through the Obamacare exchanges were well below those originally projected by the Congressional Budget Office, and the available data indicates a mix of modest increases and actual reductions for 2015 – which is very good in a sector where premiums normally increase five percent or more each year. More broadly, overall health spending has slowed substantially, with the cost-control features of the ACA probably deserving some of the credit.

In other words, health reform is looking like a major policy success story. It’s a program that is coming in ahead of schedule – and below budget – costing less, and doing more to reduce overall health costs than even its supporters predicted.

Of course, this success story makes nonsense of right-wing predictions of catastrophe. Beyond that, the good news on health costs refutes conservative orthodoxy. It’s a fixed idea on the right, sometimes echoed by ”centrist” commentators, that the only way to limit health costs is to dismantle guarantees of adequate care – for example, that the only way to control Medicare costs is to replace Medicare as we know it, a program that covers major medical expenditures, with vouchers that may or may not be enough to buy adequate insurance. But what we’re actually seeing is what looks like significant cost control via a laundry list of small changes to how we pay for care, with the basic guarantee of adequate coverage not only intact but widened to include Americans of all ages.

Tidskriftsomslag: Rolling Stone den 23 oktober 2014.

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KAMPANJ | Det var bara en tidsfråga innan Newsweek också skulle ge sig på Barack Obama med ett kontroversiellt reportage.

För ett par veckor sedan var det Michael Tomasky som skrev om Mittt Romney och The Wimp Factor”. Denna gång var det presidentens tur.

Obama’s Gotta Go” är professorn, och tidigare rådgivaren till John McCain, Niall Fergusons analys av de senaste fyra åren.

In an unguarded moment earlier this year, the president commented that the private sector of the economy was “doing fine.” Certainly, the stock market is well up (by 74 percent) relative to the close on Inauguration Day 2009. But the total number of private-sector jobs is still 4.3 million below the January 2008 peak. Meanwhile, since 2008, a staggering 3.6 million Americans have been added to Social Security’s disability insurance program. This is one of many ways unemployment is being concealed.


It is a sign of just how completely Barack Obama has “lost his narrative” since getting elected that the best case he has yet made for reelection is that Mitt Romney should not be president. In his notorious “you didn’t build that” speech, Obama listed what he considers the greatest achievements of big government: the Internet, the GI Bill, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Hoover Dam, the Apollo moon landing, and even (bizarrely) the creation of the middle class. Sadly, he couldn’t mention anything comparable that his administration has achieved.

Now Obama is going head-to-head with his nemesis: a politician who believes more in content than in form, more in reform than in rhetoric. In the past days much has been written about Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney’s choice of running mate. I know, like, and admire Paul Ryan. For me, the point about him is simple. He is one of only a handful of politicians in Washington who is truly sincere about addressing this country’s fiscal crisis.


But one thing is clear. Ryan psychs Obama out. This has been apparent ever since the White House went on the offensive against Ryan in the spring of last year. And the reason he psychs him out is that, unlike Obama, Ryan has a plan—as opposed to a narrative—for this country.

Till skillnad från Tomaskys reportage om Romney har Fergusons fått ett kritiskt mottagande p.g.a. sina påstådda sakfel.

Paul Krugman gick i taket och avböt sin semester för att kunna skriva svaret ”Unetthical Commentary”. Vilket naturligtvis genererade ett svar från Ferguson.

Och sedan har det bara rullat på i media. The Daily Beast har samlat en rad kommentarer från olika debattörer på sin hemsida.

 Bild: Tidskriftsomslaget är från den 27 augusti 2012.

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