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Published On: Fri, Apr 19th, 2013

Will Paul Krugman blame Sarah Palin for Boston bombing

So far, there has not been any commentary from Paul Krugman on the bombing at the Boston Marathon Monday, and given his incendiary remarks from previous tragedies, I admit to being surprised.

When Gabby Giffords was seriously wounded and a number of others killed in the shooting in Arizona in January, 2011, Krugman made this declaration:

A Democratic Congresswoman has been shot in the head; another dozen were also shot.

We don’t have proof yet that this was political, but the odds are that it was. She’s been the target of violence before. And for those wondering why a Blue Dog Democrat, the kind Republicans might be able to work with, might be a target, the answer is that she’s a Democrat who survived what was otherwise a GOP sweep in Arizona, precisely because the Republicans nominated a Tea Party activist. (Her father says that “the whole Tea Party” was her enemy.) And yes, she was on Sarah Palin’s infamous “crosshairs” list.

Just yesterday, Ezra Klein remarked that opposition to health reform was getting scary. Actually, it’s been scary for quite a while, in a way that already reminded many of us of the climate that preceded the Oklahoma City bombing.

You know that Republicans will yell about the evils of partisanship whenever anyone tries to make a connection between the rhetoric of Beck, Limbaugh, etc. and the violence I fear we’re going to see in the months and years ahead. But violent acts are what happen when you create a climate of hate. And it’s long past time for the GOP’s leaders to take a stand against the hate-mongers.

Update: I see that Sarah Palin has called the shooting “tragic”. OK, a bit of history: right-wingers went wild over anyone who called 9/11 a tragedy, insisting that it wasn’t a tragedy, it was an atrocity.

Update: I’m going to take down comments on this one; they would need a lot of moderating, because the crazies are coming out in force, and it’s all too likely to turn into a flame war.

When the shooting turned out to have been done by a hardcore leftist with a history of mental illness, Krugman apologized to no one. Instead, he found a way to blame his political adversaries, anyway:

It’s true that the shooter in Arizona appears to have been mentally troubled. But that doesn’t mean that his act can or should be treated as an isolated event, having nothing to do with the national climate.

However, even Krugman (so far) has not blamed Sarah Palin or Ron Paul for the Boston bombing, although I suspect that if the perpetrators do turn out to be from a right-wing group, he will find a way to put it on Palin’s shoulders.

I also would like to point out some words of wisdom from Jesse Walker of Reason Magazine, a person I am sure that Krugman would think of as a violent right-winger because his economic and political views do not line up with the editorial page of the NYT or the Princeton faculty. Writes Walker:

As I write, no one has claimed responsibility for the blasts. The police, meanwhile, are keeping their suspicions close to the vest. This could turn out to be a right-wing or Islamist attack, but it could easily turn out to be something completely different. A movement doesn’t need to be big or famous to commit murder. It doesn’t even need to have a membership larger than a single disgruntled asshole. The history of domestic terrorism is filled with figures like George Metesky, the generator wiper who was injured in a boiler explosion and denied workman’s compensation, and who then spent 16 years planting bombs around New York to get his revenge. For now I have no idea who committed this crime and, more to the point, neither do any of the alleged experts speculating on television.

I have commented not only on the bombing but also the larger point that American officials have engaged in what clearly are terrorist bombings in places like Pakistan with their infamous drone strikes, including the tactic of firing a first missile, and then waiting until the “first responders” came onto the scene to deal with survivors.

I also wrote these comments, which I am sure would infuriate people like Krugman, but I believe that they should be said:

Anyone reading this post right now almost certainly does NOT know who was responsible for the despicable bombing today at the Boston Marathon. Yet, given that the USA is a hopelessly-politicized country, I am sure that accusations already are being thrown about like so much else of the ignorance that is spewed on various venues these days.

I AM sure, however, that the people at the Southern Paranoia Law Center (SPLC) are hoping, HOPING! that the perpetrators were “white supremacists” so that the SPLC immediately can send out fund-raising letters to turn this sad event into a cash cow. (And I am sure that Paul Krugman would love to be able to blame the Tea Party or maybe even Ron Paul supporters.)

Boston Marathon bombing suspect in the white hat  photo is a screenshot of the suspect from a 7/11 camera

Boston Marathon bombing suspect in the white hat photo is a screenshot of the suspect from a 7/11 camera

I have made similar comments on my Facebook page, including a reminder not to jump to any conclusions about the “Saudi national” who was detained and (I am sure) falsely accused by police officers before they came to realize the guy had nothing to do with it. Perhaps people just need to step back and see what transpires.

Unfortunately, the USA is so hopelessly politicized that people like Krugman, Glenn Beck, the Fox News and MSNBC crews, and others are hoping and hoping and hoping that people associated with the political groups and individuals that they hate will be responsible. And no doubt, someone, someplace will find a way to blame Sarah Palin or Ron Paul.

I will add one more thing. Whoever did this thing committed a despicable act. Many of us had friends who participated in the Boston Marathon, and they had loved ones and friends with them. In 1972, when Palestinian militants engaged in their infamous massacre of Israeli athletes at the Olympic Games in Munich, I had teammates and coaches (University of Tennessee) in the Olympic Village who were placed in harm’s way.

There is no political cause that justifies violence against the innocent. But I also will add that there is nothing that permits governments to attack the innocent, either. Sometimes we forget that latter point or are so enmeshed with a “cause” that we seek to find ways to justify the unjustifiable.

Krugman in Wonderland 624


William L. Anderson is an author and an associate professor of economics at Frostburg State University in Maryland. He is also an adjunct scholar with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy as well as for the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Alabama.

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About the Author

- William L. Anderson is an author and an associate professor of economics at Frostburg State University in Maryland. He is also an adjunct scholar with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy as well as for the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Alabama.

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  1. JJ says:

    Washington is running a disinformation campaign on Sarah Palin stories since the truth leaked out. Search Sarah Palin’s dirty little secret and learn why she can only appear at heavily controlled public events.

  2. Katie says:

    Why would anyone give Sarah Palin any kind of publicity for the Boston Marathon bombing? She’s opportunistic enough, and I’m surprised her handlers haven’t jumped on this bandwagon. She deserves no blame here, and better yet, deserves no mention at all. She’s done very little but continue her angry but tiresome rhetoric, fueled by her bitterness over not having been elected in 2008. It’s time she moved on, and it’s time we all let her.

  3. Assume Much? says:

    You are sure of a lot of things. You used “I am sure” six times. It sounds like YOU are the one afraid that the bombers might be right-wingers so you strike preemptively here. Why not take up your problem you have with Krugman with the man himself, perhaps in an opposing-views type of format? This just seems to be unnecessary and pointless pot-stirring just for the sake of pot-stirring. We get it – you hate Paul Krugman. Now what?

  4. prince says:

    Like many Americans, I feel Sarah Palin should be held responsible in some small way for the bombing at the Boston Marathon. She makes her money by stirring up controversy and by polarizing different groups against each other. Her goal is to get herself money and media attention–but her thoughts are so radical that she attracts attention from the weaker or less intelligent. Just like the Giffords shooting, she places bullseye targets on people and then encourages her followers to take action. Look at the media headlines about this Bimbo from Alaska who loves to shoot animals just for the fun of it–she is always slamming, wanting to fire, targeting, blaming, criticizing, whining, crying, aiming–threatening to harm or carrying grudges against someone who she thinks has done her wrong. Sarah Palin never has a kind word to say about someone she disagrees with. She has never learned how to disagree without being disagreeable. She is an ugly person on the inside and she has become vindictive, bitter and mean. Of course, she didn’t drop the bomb or fire the shots–but unhappy people sympathize with her stupid ways to get even.

    • Sodakhic says:

      Libs think any opposing view is controversial. So threatened by a little housewife from Alaska.Put your big boy panties on, Prince.

  5. Will Paul Krugman blame Sarah Palin for Boston bombing - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] Will Paul Krugman blame Sarah Palin for Boston bombingThe Global DispatchUpdate: I see that Sarah Palin has called the shooting “tragic”. OK, a bit of history: right-wingers went wild over anyone who called 9/11 a tragedy, insisting that it wasn’t a tragedy, it was an atrocity. Update: I’m going to take down comments on …and more » […]

  6. Tawny Jones says:

    Not only Commie Krugman, but Chris Tingles Matthews & Prissy Piers Morgan probably all wanted to blame Sarah Palin for the Boston Marathon bombing. To loony liberals, the only truth is whatever lie advances their agenda.

  7. Will Paul Krugman blame Sarah Palin for Boston bombing – The Global Dispatch | sarah-palin.net says:

    […] Will Paul Krugman blame Sarah Palin for Boston bombingThe Global DispatchHowever, even Krugman (so far) has not blamed Sarah Palin or Ron Paul for the Boston bombing, although I suspect that if the perpetrators do turn out to be from a right-wing group, he will find a way to put it on Palin's shoulders. I also would like to … […]

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