Though Ryan walked back his initial remarks last Wednesday —in which he claimed "inner cities" possess a "culture problem" where men are not "even thinking about working"—Krugman does not accept the House Budget Committee chairman's claim that he was being merely "inarticulate."
"American conservatism is still, after all these years, largely driven by claims that liberals are taking away your hard-earned money and giving it to Those People," Krugman complains.
Moving beyond Ryan's specific remarks, the Princeton economist suggested they're representative of the GOP and American politics at large.
"One odd consequence of our still-racialized politics is that conservatives are still, in effect, mobilizing against the bums on welfare even though both the bums and the welfare are long gone or never existed," he wrote.
Finally, after cataloging all the traits of poverty blamed on "black" culture that have become common in white communities amid falling wages and joblessness, Krguman concludes, "[t]hese awkward facts have not, however, penetrated the world of conservative ideology."
"Mr. Ryan wasn’t being inarticulate — he said what he said because it’s all that he’s got," Krugman added.