Springtime for Hypocrites _ Krugman – It has been a great week on the hypocrisy front. A couple of high points: The hypocrisy of the apparatchiks: Joe Nocera amplifies some of the points I made in my column. The determination of the Republicans on the crisis commission to lay the blame on Fannie and Freddie flies right in the face of the evidence; and Nocera also adds some information on the curious switch of positions taking place. A few years ago the same people now attacking F&F for promoting loans to low-income borrowers were attacking F&F for … not promoting loans to low-income borrowers. Back then they castigated F&F by pointing to the fact that private lenders were making loans where the agencies refused to tread, now they say that it was F&F that lured the private sector into making those very same loans. The hypocrisy of the centrists: Just two weeks ago, the deficit was the great evil, and all the VSPs insisted that we needed fiscal austerity now now now. Then, magically, a big tax cut — increasing federal debt by more than the original Obama stimulus, and substantially raising the probability of making unaffordable tax cuts permanent — was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Why, it’s almost as if all the concern about the deficit was a front for opposing anything progressives might want, to be dropped as soon as debt was being run up on behalf of conservative goals. But that can’t be true, can it?
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