Tim Pawlenty is "Sarah Palin in a suit"

Paul Krugman doesn't think much of Tim Pawlenty, and let everyone know yesterday in a piece that compared T-Paw to a certain former mayor of Wasilla, Alaska.

The New York Times columnist is amazed that media coverage of Pawlenty has at least taken him seriously as a politician with conservative credentials and a reputation for "getting it." Hogwash, Krugman says: This man should be either belittled or ignored.

In a short, brutal piece, Krugman was utterly dismissive of Pawlenty's economic credentials, writing that he's pretty much wrong on everything, all the time.

And then, the final insult:

"I mean," Krugman wrote, "as far as I can tell he's Sarah Palin in a suit."

The premier economics writer in America thinks so little of Pawlenty that he  thought about him only long enough to dash out a single damning paragraph on his "Conscience of a Liberal" blog. 

I have to say that there is a mystery associated with Pawlenty -- but not about the candidate. Instead, the question is why pundits continue to represent him as a smart, qualified guy. On economics, he has been awesomely clueless -- making gross factual errors, demonstrating on repeated occasions that he doesn't understand anything about monetary economics...Maybe there are some subjects on which he isn't an embarrassing ignoramus, but I've yet to see them.

It seems like we've identified that bizarre, motionless, and nearly hairless roadkill found near Alexandria: It's Tim Pawlenty. The driver has been identified as one Paul Krugman, resident of Princeton, New Jersey, who was just passing through.

The impetus for Krugman's insult was a blog post by Matt Yglesias of Think Progress, who posted a video of Pawlenty speaking -- for just over a minute! -- which he says includes "a number of blundering errors." It seems that in trying to boil down the U.S. financial system for Iowa's Joe Six Pack, T-Paw boiled a bit too much and was left with a burnt-up pot.

Pawlenty tries to compare running the country's finances to running a household budget. Explaining why the U.S. has no position to call China on its unfair trade practices, Pawlenty blames the fact that China owns U.S. debt, asking, "You ever told off your banker?"

No, Tim. But we've also never had a machine that makes dollar bills, or a fleet of nuclear submarines, and if we did, we'd probably feel a bit better about telling off our banker. In the future, stick to the stuff you know, like hockey and finishing fifth in the Ames Straw Poll.


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