Mark Thoma reads Paul Krugman, the shrillest of the shrillest of the shrillest of those who have been driven into shrill unholy madness by the disconnection from reality, incompetence, mendacity, and malevolence of George W. Bush and his administration:
Economist's View: Paul Krugman: They Told You So: Paul Krugman reviews "The Cassandra Chronicles":
...Shortly after U.S. forces marched into Baghdad in 2003, The Weekly Standard published a jeering article titled, "The Cassandra Chronicles: The stupidity of the antiwar doomsayers." Among those the article mocked was a "war novelist" named James Webb, who is now the senator-elect from Virginia. The article's title was more revealing than its authors knew. People forget the nature of Cassandra's curse: although nobody would believe her, all her prophecies came true. And so it was with those who warned against invading Iraq. At best, they were ignored....
I'd like to offer some praise to those who got it right. Here's a partial honor roll:
Former President George H. W. Bush and Brent Scowcroft.... "Had we gone the invasion route, the United States could conceivably still be an occupying power in a bitterly hostile land."...
Al Gore.... "I am deeply concerned that the course of action ... with respect to Iraq has the potential to seriously damage our ability to win the war against terrorism and to weaken our ability to lead the world in this new century."
Barack Obama.... "I don't oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other armchair, weekend warriors in this administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne."
Representative John Spratt.... "The outcome after the conflict is actually going to be the hardest part, and it is far less certain."
Representative Nancy Pelosi.... "When we go in, the occupation, which is now being called the liberation, could be interminable and the amount of money it costs could be unlimited."
Senator Russ Feingold.... "I am increasingly troubled by the seemingly shifting justifications for an invasion... When the administration moves back and forth from one argument to another, I think it undercuts the credibility of the case and the belief in its urgency. I believe that this practice of shifting justifications has much to do with the troubling phenomenon of many Americans questioning the administration's motives."
Howard Dean.... "I firmly believe that the president is focusing our diplomats, our military, our intelligence agencies, and even our people on the wrong war, at the wrong time.... Iraq is a divided country, with Sunni, Shia and Kurdish factions that share both bitter rivalries and access to large quantities of arms."
We should honor these people for their wisdom and courage. We should also ask why anyone who... acted as a cheerleader for this march of folly... should be taken seriously when he or she talks about matters of national security.
He reminds us of why, today, nearly everybody even semi-sentient joins in the chant: "