— Alex Pareene (@pareene) February 14, 2013
Joe Scarborough and co-host Mika Brzezinski's self-identified calling card is civility. Their guest earlier this week was Paul Krugman, a distinguished member of the academic community and am honored recipient of the Nobel prize in economics.
By calling Paul Krugman's professional view on the national debt and U.S. economic priorities 'extreme', without also responding to the arguments that Krugman makes to support his view on the debt and U.S. economic priorities, Scarborough's response falls outside the bounds of civil debate. How so? Joe makes it clear he does not and will not consider Paul Krugman's professional view a serious argument. This is the picture of disrespect. What is less civil than disrespect?
Since Paul Krugman's recent appearance on Morning Joe, Joe's been a prickly towards Krugman and even his own Morning Joe audience. Joe's response is to label Krugman's economic arguments as extreme and to disparage his own audience on the air. Is he trying to goose rating or is this Joe benig Joe?
Krugman's thesis is that our national priority should be full employment -- ~5%-6% unemployment -- and that deficit reduction now, the policy of austerity, will not produce growth, it will produce recession. Krugman supports deficit reduction in the long term, and job growth now. Scarborough says that's an extreme view and argues Krugman should not be taken any more seriously than Wayne LaPierre.
Does Joe Scarborough's trolling make his views on the economy more compelling to you in any way?
Does it strengthen his credibility or diminish it as he tries to diminish Paul Krugman as an economist with 'extreme' views on the debt and the economy?
Last month, Alex Pareene wrote, "How not to defend yourself against the “chauvinism” charge, starring Morning Joe: Today, Joe Scarborough yelled at Mika Brzezinski until she apologized for getting annoyed with his snide sexism." Read it.
...and there's more on Joe from Salon here.