First Review

SYNOPSIS: Krugman provides a passage from the first review of The Great Unraveling

Publishers Weekly has reviewed The Great Unraveling:

This selection of three years of New York Times op-eds by economist and Princeton professor Krugman document his opposition to the governance of George W. Bush and his "bad economics wrapped in the flag." In his introduction, Krugman asserts that Bush is a radical and that America's right wing is "a revolutionary power... a movement whose leaders do not accept the legitimacy of our current political system." The core of the book's 100-plus columns is dedicated to eviscerating Bush's fiscal policies, uncovering the administration's hidden agendas, as well as castigating the media for letting him get away with it. A handful of articles advocate the globalization of free trade. Much of the material will be familiar to Times readers, but reading the items together reveals Krugman's growing anger at the hubris he sees exhibited by the extreme right wing and its seeming defiance of logic. At first, Krugman is a numbers man, methodically parsing the data (demonstrating, for example, how the heartland is not, statistically, more committed to family than people on the coasts), but over time he arrives at the conclusion that "Yes, Virginia, there is a vast right-wing conspiracy" and "it works a lot like a special-interest lobby." Krugman is one of the few commentators able to sound both appalled and reasonable at the same time as he provides an alternate history of the last three years to that penned by conservative pundits. Many readers will find Krugman very persuasive as to how our present government has done us wrong.

I wish they'd said more about the new material - trust me, the intro in particular will have the Washington Post editorial board accusing me of paranoia. Also, I flatter myself that the way the columns are organized, plus the additional material that frames them, will add a lot of value even for people who've been following my stuff. Anyway, PW is definitely a good start. Now, if I can only get Fox News to sue me ...

Pre-order on Amazon; books in stores Sept. 12, I think. Grueling 14-city tour in process of scheduling. More info to come.

Originally published on the Official Paul Krugman Site, 8.26.03