Paul Krugman: Gore vs Bush is "Happening Again"

Just as Al Gore was not "just as bad" as George Bush, Hillary Clinton is not "just as bad" as Donald Trump.
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Ben Cohen
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Just as Al Gore was not "just as bad" as George Bush, Hillary Clinton is not "just as bad" as Donald Trump.
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Paul Krugman decries the "increasingly bizarre" media coverage of Hillary Clinton's supposed scandals, and urges journalists "to ask whether they are reporting facts or simply engaging in innuendo, and urge the public to read with a critical eye."

The major problem with the media attention paid to these scandals is again, the completely disingenuous "just as bad" theology that argues Clinton's sins are somehow comparable to Donald Trump's. As any student of even recent history knows, buying into this nonsense can have fatal consequences. In fact, we've seen how this plays out only 16 years ago. Writes Krugman 

Throughout the campaign most media coverage gave the impression that Mr. Bush was a bluff, straightforward guy, while portraying Al Gore — whose policy proposals added up, and whose critiques of the Bush plan were completely accurate — as slippery and dishonest. Mr. Gore’s mendacity was supposedly demonstrated by trivial anecdotes, none significant, some of them simply false. No, he never claimed to have invented the internet. But the image stuck.

And right now I and many others have the sick, sinking feeling that it’s happening again.

Sadly, this is happening again. Hillary Clinton is not perfect by any means, and there is legitimate cause for concern when it comes to several areas of her political and professional life. But whatever sins she has committed, not only do they pale in comparison to Trumps, but from all available evidence, appear to be wildly exaggerated. Writes Krugman of the latest so-called scandal: 

Consider the big Associated Press report suggesting that Mrs. Clinton’s meetings with foundation donors while secretary of state indicate “her possible ethics challenges if elected president.” Given the tone of the report, you might have expected to read about meetings with, say, brutal foreign dictators or corporate fat cats facing indictment, followed by questionable actions on their behalf.

But the prime example The A.P. actually offered was of Mrs. Clinton meeting with Muhammad Yunus, a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize who also happens to be a longtime personal friend. If that was the best the investigation could come up with, there was nothing there.

To repeat: there was nothing there. 

This apparently doesn't make a blind bit of difference to the mainstream media so desperate for a two-way horse race that it is ignoring objective reality. Because in no sane universe was Al Gore in any way comparable to George W. Bush -- a man who turned out to be not only the worst president in American history, but likely the worst president of anything, ever. And in no sane universe is Hillary Clinton comparable to Donald Trump -- a man who genuinely believes that climate change is "just weather", and the US has the right to nuke anyone it chooses because, well, why the fuck not?

We saw what happened during the Bush years, so to all you journalists and media outlets out there promoting this lazy thinking, let's not do this again.