Washington Post media critic Howard Kurtz profiles New York Times columnist and Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman, but manages to overlook what should probably be the central focus of such a profile: Why haven't Krugman's views, particularly on economic issues, been reflected more in major media coverage of public policy debates?
Krugman is, after all, a New York Times columnist, bestselling author, Princeton professor, and Nobel Prize winner in economics. And, as Kurtz notes, Krugman has not been bashful about criticizing the Obama administration. And yet Krugman's view that, for example, last year's economic stimulus package was far too small was largely ignored by the news media.
A hint of this shows up in Kurtz's profile -- but only a hint:
"I felt like a really lonely voice," says Paul Krugman, an unknotted blue tie draped around his neck. "It's been really frustrating." But he keeps hammering away, demanding action in one New York Times column after another, hoping "to establish a counter-narrative against what everyone else is saying."
The 57-year-old commentator feels vindicated after predicting that the economy would skid into the gutter unless the president pushed through a far bigger stimulus package.
Unfortunately, Kurtz doesn't attempt to assess why Krugman is a "lonely voice" -- or what it says about the news media that the views of this Nobel-winning economist/New York Times columnist (and the many other economists who agree with him) are largely absent from coverage of public policy debates.