Krugman: Rich are waging “pure class warfare”

The Nobel Prize-winning New York Times columnist argues the rich are even more selfish than you thought

Topics: Paul Krugman, Class warfare, New York Times, The 1 Percent, Wall Street, bailouts,

Krugman: Rich are waging "pure class warfare"Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman (Credit: Reuters/Brendan Mcdermid)

In a post at his blog, New York Times columnist and award-winning economist Paul Krugman argues that while it may appear the rich want to destroy all forms of government, that isn’t the case. What they really want to do, Krugman writes, is destroy all forms of government that don’t benefit themselves.

More from Krugman:

[M]any of the rich are selective in their opposition to government helping the unlucky. They’re against stuff like food stamps and unemployment benefits; but bailing out Wall Street? Yay!

Seriously. Charlie Munger says that we should “thank God” for the bailouts, but that ordinary people fallen on hard times should “suck it in and cope.” AIG’s CEO — the CEO of a bailed out firm! — says that complaints about bonuses to executives at such firms are just as bad as lynchings (I am not making this up.)

The point is that the superrich have not gone Galt on us — not really, even if they imagine they have. It’s much closer to pure class warfare, a defense of the right of the privileged to keep and extend their privileges. It’s not Ayn Rand, it’s Ancien Régime.

Elias Isquith

Elias Isquith is a staff writer at Salon, focusing on politics. Follow him on Twitter at @eliasisquith, and email him at eisquith@salon.com.

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