Daily Archives: February 22, 2010

In praise of Rahm Emanuel (seriously). Dana Milbank, Washington Post. Obama’s problem is not Emanuel, whose good advice has been ignored, but cult-followers Jarrett, Axelrod and Gibbs, who “believe [the president] is a transformational figure who needn’t dirty his hands in politics”. Emanuel now has “his own small press operation,” says Milbank. Evidently. I agree with Milbank about Gibbs, though. The man is a disaster. I cringe every time I see him.

Profile of Paul Krugman. Larissa MacFarquhar, New Yorker. Very nice piece. Gets a lot right about what is so good, and what is so hard to take, about the NYT’s “belligerently, obsessively political” Nobel laureate. (“Krugman has a peculiar blind spot when it comes to scorn.”) I say, give Robin Wells a share of his byline, for beefing up the outrage and recalcitrance–so crucial to the brand. Next time Paul says he is on the point of despair (won’t be long) I shall think of him looking bleak on the beach in St Croix, pina colada in hand. Don’t miss Loudun Wainwright’s Krugman Blues, by the way.

Teachers v Obama. Mickey Kaus, Kausfiles. It’s not just teachers. See The Economist on the same subject.

In the never-ending struggle over US healthcare reform, this is a big week. On Thursday, the White House plans a televised meeting of Democrats and Republicans to explore, it says, the possibility of last-minute compromise. Meanwhile, according to Kathleen Sebelius, the health secretary, the administration is preparing to announce a plan that Democrats can pass without Republican votes, if need be.

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Clive Crook’s blog

This blog is no longer updated but it remains open as an archive.

I have been the FT's Washington columnist since April 2007. I moved from Britain to the US in 2005 to write for the Atlantic Monthly and the National Journal after 20 years working at the Economist, most recently as deputy editor. I write mainly about the intersection of politics and economics.

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