The gaunt Aunt Sadie of a gent diddling his second penis above, one Mark Thoma, has an aggregator-type econ-con web site I've frequented like a barfly for many many moons, with great profit.
Alas, now he's gone and taken up a second gig as a penny-a-word pundit over at CBS's money watch, and in no time at all, through a self-indulgent beaverish flood of pompous high-minded idiotically conventional postings worthy of Woodrow Wilson himself, Mark has shown a side I doubt even his own shaving mirror could stand.
Here's a recent specimen, on a topic that invariably zaps a real raw nerve in my neck: the independence of the Fed from our great and terrible Congress. In this piece of foolishness, a quote from Barney Frank to the effect that Fed regional presidents "too often vote in favor of higher interest rates", triggers this magisterial response from the brand-new bigfoot:
"That... sentence means he believes the Fed has favored low inflation over low unemployment as it has set interest rate policy. That may or may not be true, but do we really want members of the House setting interest rate policy or changing the structure of the Fed whenever they disagree? I don’t."The technocrat as Wall Street water spaniel.
The House -- the only organ of American governement with any resemblance to a democratic institution -- setting interest rates? God forbid! Imagine if the people out there in their benighted millions, those ignorant TV-watching log-bumps, actually got a crack every two years at hiring or firing the folks that control the headwaters of our credit system?!?!
Mark is not alone, of course. There's a chorus out there bellowing the same sort of thing every day. Here's famed Princeton academe and former Fed board member, the bulb-like Alan Blinder....
... in the Washpost the other day:
"An independent monetary policy, designed and executed by the Federal Reserve, is one of the great and enduring achievements of the Progressive Era. It has enabled the long time-horizons of technocrats to triumph over the short-term perspectives of politicians, bringing us low inflation over the decades. Because of this, and because technocratic monetary policy seems to be more skillful than political monetary policy, the Fed's independence has been admired and imitated by country after country."With that fruity blast I'll leave you to screech alone -- especially you, super Al -- and retire to my coffin. The dawn breaks soon here in Hingham. Day is aborning, another day of getting and spending. Horrors horrors horrors!