NYT’s columnist Paul Krugman dragged for politicizing 9/11, comparing terror deaths to COVID-19

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New York Times columnist Paul Krugman was ripped online by scores of social media users after comparing the 9/11 death toll with that of the novel coronavirus pandemic on the 19th anniversary of the country’s deadliest terrorist attack.

“So it’s 9/11. Hard to remember now how large the terrorist attack loomed in our national psyche; after all, in death toll Covid-19 is already the equivalent of 60 9/11s. But a few thoughts and recollections,” Krugman wrote to begin his threat on Friday.

“Overall, Americans took 9/11 pretty calmly. Notably, there wasn’t a mass outbreak of anti-Muslim sentiment and violence, which could all too easily have happened. And while [George W.] Bush was a terrible president, to his credit he tried to calm prejudice, not feed it,” Krugman continued.

“Daily behavior wasn’t drastically affected. True, for a while people were afraid to fly: my wife and I took a lovely trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands a couple of months later, because air fares and hotel rooms were so cheap. But life returned to normal fairly fast,” Krugman said, appearing to be oblivious to the fact that nearly 3,000 people — the vast majority of them Americans — were killed just weeks earlier, which led to those ‘cheap’ rooms and fares.

“On the other hand, I groan whenever I see some pundit describing the aftermath as a time of national unity. On the contrary, Republicans began exploiting the atrocity almost immediately — trying to use it to cut capital gains taxes within 48 hours,” he went on.

The economist went on to mock then-NYPD Chief Bernard Kerik and then-NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, both of whom were widely praised for their responses in the aftermath of the attacks.

“And of course the Bush team used 9/11 to take us into an unrelated and disastrous war. It’s actually remarkable how many of the media-promoted ‘heroes’ of 9/11 ended up revealed as horrible people. Remember Bernie Kerik? And will Giuliani ever get off my TV screen?” Krugman wrote.

“Almost two decades on, it’s now clear that the real threat to America comes not from foreign terrorists but from home-grown white supremacists. But you know what? That was true even in 2001,” he added to finish his thread.

“Paul Krugman is an embarrassment to the species,” tweeted Tracy Beanz, the editor-in-chief of UncoverDC.


“Can we just give the family members of 9/11 our time today? It’s so disrespectful to try to draw parallels to COVID, even more so today. Just stop,” another user wrote.

“BUT was the average age of the dead from 9/11 78.5 years old? Also, the 9/11 victims were actually murdered, they didn’t die of long term comorbidities and old age. How can you even draw parallels, because you see ‘numbers’ and ‘data’ and can’t help yourself?” another said.

Krugman is constantly embroiled in controversy over things he says and writes, but earlier this year he was entangled in a controversy of a much different kind.

In January, he claimed on Twitter that someone had used his IP address to download child pornography, suggesting a conspiracy theory that “Qanon” might have been responsible for.

“Well, I’m on the phone with my computer security service, and as I understand it someone compromised my IP address and is using it to download child pornography,” he wrote. “But this could be an attempt to Qanon me. It’s an ugly world out there.”

Users questioned why Krugman would have even made such a statement on Twitter rather than immediately contacting law enforcement.


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