Friday, June 08, 2018

Paul Krugman

We’re being governed by men with small and empty souls. Does it matter?

In a direct sense, not really. There’s a good case that Trump’s own profiteering is doing huge damage, but the small ways in which his officials have been ripping off taxpayers are trivial compared with the big things they’re doing to make America worse: undermining health care, environmental protection, financial regulation, and more.

In a deeper sense, however, petty corruption and cruel, destructive policy are indeed linked. Men who see high office largely as a license to live large, act like big shots and force government employees to act as their personal servants aren’t likely to care much about serving the public interest.

We don’t need a government of saints; people can be imperfect (who isn’t?) yet still do good. But a government consisting almost entirely of bad people — which is what we now have — is, in fact, going to govern badly.