Is America on its way to becoming a boiled frog?
I’m referring, of course, to the proverbial frog that, placed in a pot of cold water that is gradually heated, never realizes the danger it’s in and is boiled alive. Real frogs will, in fact, jump out of the pot — but never mind. The hypothetical boiled frog is a useful metaphor for a very real problem: the difficulty of responding to disasters that creep up on you a bit at a time.
Why? Why is it a useful analogy? It only confuses the issue to spread the urban legend that frogs won't jump out of boiling water, and then say "Okay actually they will, but the analogy stands."
At least Krugman has the presence of mind to point out that it's an urban legend... most people quote the frog legend as if it were true. But frankly, by repeating the urban legend you're reinforcing the false story and increasing the likelihood of cementing it as a true story, by people who miss the instant retraction.
Here's a better idea: somebody ought to find a new metaphor to describe a person who doesn't notice they're in trouble as their situation gradually changes. If you can't think of one, then maybe metaphors just aren't the way to go here, because they muddle the issue rather than clarify it.