The question here is pretty simple, in spite of Robert Samuelson’s efforts to sow confusion. There is very little plausible benefit from raising interest rates and slowing the economy at a point where the economy is far below its potential by almost any measure.
Former Reagan budget director David Stockman is outraged–outraged I tell you!–by the Federal Reserve increasing the money supply. In a lengthy op-ed on the front page of the New York Times Sunday Review (3/31/13), he condemns “the mad money printers at the Federal Reserve” with their “egregious flood of phony money” and “a radical, uncharted spree of money printing.” The Fed’s “panic-stricken melee of…money-printing,” he writes, is part of “the single most shameful chapter in American financial history.” For all this moral indignation, however, he never gets around to explaining what exactly is wrong about “printing money.” It’s certainly possible […]
The fact that the Federal Reserve could be doing much more to stimulate the economy–but so far has chosen not to do so–is finally getting some prominent corporate media attention. The New York Times wrote today (7/15/10), referring to Fed chair Ben Bernanke: As Mr. Bernanke pointed out in a speech in 2002, when he was a Fed governor, a central bank that has run out of ordinary tools to prop up the economy, like lowering short-term interest rates, still has other options to prevent deflation. It’s good to see discussion of disagreements within the Fed. But these would be […]
AP‘s story (1/28/10) on Ben Bernanke’s reconfirmation as chair of the Federal Reserve states plainly what is more usually the unstated assumption in corporate media coverage of the Fed: The battle over Bernanke’s confirmation has been a test of central bank independence, a crucial element if the Fed is to carry out unpopular but economically essential policies. From this perspective, the Federal Reserve is an organization of financial philosopher kings who must be insulated from democracy in order to do what is best for us. There is another way to look at it, of course: that the Fed essentially represents […]