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May 14, 2004

Paul Krugman: I "Forgot" I Wasn't Supposed to Just Make Shit Up

Via to Kausfiles, who's got a funny take on it, Donald Luskin catches Paul Krugman making, yet again, a flat-out error.

And does he correct his error at the bottom of the next column, clearly labeling it as such, as per the alleged new NYT corrections policy?

No, of course not. Instead, he writes a new column on the same topic -- almost certainly cobbled together as a pretext for revisiting the erroroneous statement -- and quickly mentions the error in a parenthetical note in the middle of that column, claiming, not that he erred, but that he "forgot" what he already knew.

He "forgot" he knew the fact he unambigiously denied as being a fact at all, and NYT Op-Ed page editor Gail Collins "forgot" that she supposedly was enforcing a new corrections policy for columnists requiring them to clearly label errors as such, rather than rowing them back in a subsequent column, as had been -- and continues to be -- the longtime NYT practice.

Luskin deadpans as he twists the knife:

You see, it's not that he didn't research it carefully in the first place, dear trusting reader. It's not that he was wrong. No, he was right all along. There's just so much expert knowledge on all subjects rattling around in that astounding brain of his, he forgot this one!

And that's awfully funny, because that's precisely the same reason we get facts wrong, and misspell words like "embarassing," so frequently. It's not that we're sloppy, slapdash, amateurish, or just frequently practicing the ancient art of rectal ventriloquism; no, what you've got to understand is that we're so damned scary-brilliant it's hard to keep track of all our cornucopiaic smartitude.

We just know far too much for one group of well-paid rightwing propagandists to keep tabs on it all. We really need an intern.

Meanwhile, up a bit from that, Luskin has further details on that Yale economic model showing Bush taking 58% of the popular vote.

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posted by Ace at 02:45 PM

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