Call the fire department, not the arsonists

Rachel Maddow shamelessly flouts bipartisanship, calls some claims about economics better than others.

Rachel Maddow shamelessly flouts bipartisanship, calls some claims about economics better than others.

I’m too technically challenged to embed the video directly, but I’m happy to link to Steve Benen’s money quote, as it would be mine too:

Cutting food-stamp funding to attract Republican support is proof-positive that the Republicans are not trying to come up with an effective stimulus here. If your house is on fire, and you call your fire department, and your fire department tells you to pour gasoline on the flames, they’re not actually making a good-faith effort to help you put out the fire. They’re not a good fire department.

If you’re working up policy to fix an economic crisis, which is characterized by there being no spending in the economy, and someone in that debate says, ‘OK, but cut the spending out of the rescue plan,’ they’re bad at making policy.

And you know what? It matters when you’re wrong. A whopping proportion of the Republican rhetoric about stimulus is wrong…. It’s just wrong. The time is now to take the radical step, as Americans — as civic-minded Americans concerned about our future — it’s time to take the radical step of privileging correct information over incorrect information….

If you are wrong, from here on out, you should lose the argument and you should lose your political potency. Form a flat-earthers club or something, where you talk enthusiastically to each other about your made-up economic ideas that aren’t based in reality. But get out of the way of the people who are actually trying to save the country.

Chortle loudly. Then, more usefully, send the link to a few low-information acquaintances.

Sorry to be repeating so much material posted elsewhere. But at times like these, repetition is a virtue.

Author: Andrew Sabl

I'm a political theorist and Visiting Professor (through 2017) in the Program on Ethics, Politics and Economics at Yale. My interests include the history of political thought, toleration, democratic theory, political ethics, problems of coordination and convention, the realist movement in political theory, and the thought of David Hume. My first book, Ruling Passions: Political Offices and Democratic Ethics (Princeton, 2002) covered many of these topics, with a special focus on the varieties of democratic politics and the disparate qualities of mind and character appropriate to those who practice each of them. My second book Hume's Politics: Coordination and Crisis in the History of England was published in 2012; I am currently finishing a book on toleration, with the working title The Virtues of Hypocrisy, under contract with Harvard University Press. A Los Angeles native, I got my B.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard. Before coming to Yale I taught at Vanderbilt and at UCLA, where I was an Assistant, Associate, and Full Professor; and held visiting positions at Williams, Harvard, and Princeton. I am married to Miriam Laugesen, who teaches health policy and the politics of health care at the Mailman School of public health at Columbia, and we have a twelve-year-old son.