Ben Bernanke

Women On Currency: Replace Andrew Jackson Or Alexander Hamilton? Jackson, Definitely!

Six weeks ago, this blogger wrote of the move to have a woman on American currency, with the move being to replace Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill. In an online competition, abolitionist and runaway slave Harriet Tubman won out over Eleanor Roosevelt and Rosa Parks.

All well and good, but now the Treasury Department is proposing to replace Alexander Hamilton on the $10 bill, rather than Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill.

Such an action would be totally wrong, as Hamilton is the founder of our national banking system, the most important economic figure in American history, and also the founder of a viewpoint in government—a belief in a strong national government, and a broad interpretation of the Constitution—-which in his time was considered to be “conservatism”, but in the past century since Franklin D. Roosevelt, has been seen as the view of government of the modern Democratic Party, namely “liberalism.”

Liberalism, and the alternative word “progressivism” has been the backbone of all of the major political, social and economic reforms of the past century, and Hamilton’s philosophy is something that needs to continue to be honored.

On the other hand, Andrew Jackson, while regarded as one of the more significant Presidents, destroyed the Second National Bank of the United States, a major mistake; promoted slavery and condemned abolitionists; and promoted the death of thousands of native Americans in the despicable action, known as the “Trail of Tears”, the forced removal of five Indian tribes to Oklahoma, later taken away from native Americans, when oil was discovered in Tulsa in 1889.

Ben Bernanke, the former head of the Federal Reserve, has called for just what this blogger is proposing: leave Alexander Hamilton on the $10 bill, and replace Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill!

Withdrawal Of Larry Summers For Federal Reserve Leadership A Victory For America!

Larry Summers, the former Harvard President, Treasury Secretary for awhile under Bill Clinton, and economic adviser to Barack Obama, has withdrawn his candidacy for Federal Reserve Board Chairman to replace Ben Bernanke.

This is a major victory for America, and for fiscal sanity, and it now seems that Janey Yellen, Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve, will become the most powerful woman in American history, as Barack Obama moves away from what would have been a disastrous choice of Summers.

Summers is very bright and intelligent, no doubt about that, and one can be sure that he tells people of those traits on a regular basis!

Summers is a pompous windbag, who was arrogant as Harvard President, including saying women did not have the right stuff to be in the field of science; showed arrogance in his dealings with students and faculty; and as Treasury Secretary, and later, gave bad advice that helped to cause the Great Recession of 2008 to the present.

What drove Barack Obama to want him is beyond understanding, but thankfully, four members of the Senate Banking Committee, all Democrats, made clear of their dissatisfaction with Summers.

These four courageous Senators are Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, and Jon Tester of Montana, and we all owe a debt of gratitude to them for helping to prevent the nomination of Summers.

The nation will be well served by Janet Yellen as Federal Reserve Board Chairman!

“Crossing The Aisle”: BiPartisanship Of America’s Presidents From FDR To Obama

A common theme in American history is the “crossing of the aisle”, the bipartisanship encouraged by just about every American President, and the utilizing of leaders of the opposition party to help make his administration successful.

Franklin D. Roosevelt had Henry Stimson as his Secretary of War from 1940-45, with Stimson having served as Secretary of State under Herbert Hoover. He also had Frank Knox as Secretary of the Navy from 1940-1944, who had been the Republican Vice Presidential nominee in 1936.

Harry Truman had Warren Austin as his United Nations Ambassador from 1947 to 1953.

Dwight D. Eisenhower had Robert Anderson in various roles, as Secretary of the Navy, Deputy Secretary of Defense, and Secretary of the Treasury, during his eight years in office from 1953 to 1961.

John F. Kennedy had Robert McNamara as his Secretary of Defense and D. Douglas Dillon as his Secretary of the Treasury and Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. (who he had defeated for the Senate in 1952, as his Ambassador to South Vietnam.

Lyndon B. Johnson kept on McNamara, Dillon and Lodge as close advisers in his administration, after he succeeded to the Presidency upon Kennedy’s death.

Richard Nixon had Sargent Shriver as Ambassador to France, John Connally as Secretary of the Treasury, and Daniel Patrick Moynihan as Ambassador to India.

Gerald Ford had Moynihan stay on as Ambassador to India, and then as Ambassador to the United Nations.

Jimmy Carter had James Schlesinger as Secretary of Energy, and Lawrence Eagleburger as Ambassador to Yugoslavia.

Ronald Reagan has Mike Mansfield at Ambassador to Japan, Jeane Kirkpatrick as Ambassador to the United Nations, William Bennett as Secretary of Education, and Paul Volcker as Chairman of the Federal Reserve.

George H. W. Bush had Richard Stone as Ambassador to Denmark, and Robert Strauss as Ambassador to the Soviet Union.

Bill Clinton had Alan Greenspan as Chairman of the Federal Reserve and William Cohen as Secretary of Defense.

George W. Bush had Norman Mineta as Secretary of Transportation.

And Barack Obama has had Robert Gates as Secretary of Defense, Ray LaHood as Secretary of Transportation, Jon Huntsman as Ambassador to China, John McHugh as Secretary of the Army, Ben Bernanke as Chairman of the Federal Reserve, and now has pending the nomination of Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense.

Notice that Obama has had more members of the opposition party in his administration than any President!

The Washington Post-Bloomberg GOP Presidential Debate: Romney Still Ahead!

The Washington Post-Bloomberg GOP Presidential debate tonight in New Hampshire was more of the same: Mitt Romney winning the debate!

Romney continued to look competent, confident, relaxed, smiling, and unruffled. He certainly had a good day, with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie endorsing him, and then sitting in the audience at the Dartmouth College debate in New Hampshire.

Herman Cain was given the seat next to Romney, due to his being second in recent polls, but he was constantly under attack for his 9-9-9 plan, which economists have said will not work, and would particularly harm poor people. It seems as if he probably did not win support based on his responses to the attacks, which seemed lame.

Rick Perry did not improve his standing, which has been in decline, and actually looked confused and uncomfortable when the camera happened to focus on him when he was listening to others speak.

Jon Huntsman, sadly, did not seem to improve his image, despite his great credentials, and it now seems unlikely that he will improve in the polls, unless miraculously he can build up in New Hampshire, the state he is counting on to boost his campaign.

MIchele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, and Newt Gingrich did nothing spectacular to improve their chances, although Gingrich did gain applause for some of his rhetorical lines!

All of the candidates avoided specifics on the economy, and made many claims that were exaggerated, already being pointed out just a half hour after the debate, which simply focused on that subject. It was easier for them to condemn others and call for firings and blame, and to attack the Federal Reserve Board and Chairman Ben Bernanke.

The candidates made it clear they did not want to raise taxes one cent, and yet did not want to cut defense, something which is impossible in reality if taxes are not raised.

Did any of the candidates give hope that the economy would indeed be better under them than under President Obama? If anyone seriously thinks so, they are delusional!

It will be interesting to see the polls in the next few days, as to who ends up second behind Romney. Will Cain keep his second position, or who will replace him as the “anti Romney”? That is the question that most comes out of this debate, with another one scheduled next week, sponsored by CNN in Nevada, one of the states with the highest rate of unemployment!

The Debate Audience In Tampa: What Are We Becoming? Shame Over Their Behavior!

In watching the CNN-Tea Party debate in Tampa, Florida, last night, beyond the points made by the potential GOP Presidential candidates, one characteristic stood out, a very ugly characteristic!

The audience at the debate demonstrated just how nasty, mean spirited, self centered, and lacking in humanity the Tea Party crowd have become!

It has become a disease in America, if one wants to believe that the Tea Party movement is spreading far and wide, which the author hopes is NOT the case!

Witness the following:

1. When Rick Perry brought up the idea of Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke being treasonous, the crowd cheered wildly.
2. When the subject of a 30 year old male who chose not to have health insurance coverage and then is in the hospital for six months, the reaction of the audience is to applaud the idea that he should not be put into intensive care to save his life, that he should die, that there is no responsibility for others in medical crisis.
3. The hatred of the audience toward illegal immigration, and readiness to destroy Social Security and Medicare was obvious.
4. The refusal of the audience to consider that Ron Paul had some good points about our foreign policy causing a lot of our woes financially, and instead booing him, was disturbing.
5. There were many other moments of poor behavior by the crowd, too numerous to list here.

But beyond all this, the fact that the audience at the Reagan Library debate last week cheered and applauded the fact that Rick Perry had been responsible for the execution of more prisoners than any governor in history, was also very disconcerting, as if the death penalty is the answer, when it is well known that mistakes ARE made and have been made in Texas and elsewhere, with denial of new evidence, refusal to recognize that some testimony against some defendants is unreliable, and that the death penalty is unevenly utilized against minorities as compared to whites!

If this is the country we are becoming, the equivalent of the Tea Party mentality, this nation is in deep trouble, and we have lost our common decency and humanity!

But the thought is that this is a minority view, which demands full commitment to fight and defeat this poison, this cancer, in our society, before it becomes endemic!

George W. Bush To Rick Perry: The Potential Further Deterioration Of The American Presidency In The Election Of 2012!

Much has been written about the faults and shortcomings of the George W. Bush Presidency, but we are now faced with another Texas Governor who could, if elected, make us wish for the “good old days” of Bush 43, and certainly for the “very good old days” of Bush 41, and even to wish for a “Bush 45 (Jeb Bush)”!

The Bush family and their supporters are clearly vigorously opposed to a President Rick Perry. Jeb Bush has been indirectly critical of the GOP Presidential field, saying instead of just attacking President Obama, real alternatives to his policies are needed, a swipe at Rick Perry. His son, Jeb Bush, Jr. has formally endorsed Jon Huntsman, and Huntsman met with the elder President Bush at his home in Kennebunkport, Maine, before entering the race. Bad blood has existed between the second President Bush and Perry, who was his Lieutenant Governor and succeeded him when Bush became President in 2001. Karl Rove, adviser to the second Bush, has been vehemently against Perry, as he and the Bush family were when Perry ran in the 2010 GOP primary for another term against Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.

George W. Bush promoted “compassionate conservatism”, and while that is often ridiculed, in fact, for all its faults, Bush’s administration DID promote a prescription drug plan for seniors, although it was not funded by taxes and has added to the national debt. Bush also was not, and his family are not, supporters of the Tea Party movement, which in many ways, are a reaction against steps taken by Bush in the economic crisis of 2008–2009.

Now we have Rick Perry, who has threatened Ben Bernanke of the Federal Reserve Board, an appointee of Bush. He has had the gall to say Barack Obama does not love America, even though Obama’s record of going after terrorists successfully far outdoes the eight years of Bush and Dick Cheney. Perry has also attacked Social Security, calling it a Ponzi scheme, and is trying to stir younger Americans to rise up against paying the Social Security tax, which effect would be to bring the whole system down and deny senior citizens the safety net that has worked well for 75 years, and is in good shape, even without any modification, for 25 more years, and with some tinkering, will be just fine for the long run!

Under Perry, the number of poor Texans, growth in minimum wage jobs, decline of educational funds and standards, and percentages of people with no health care coverage, has magnified, while under Bush, many of the statistics showed much more positive results. And one cannot just say that the Great Recession beginning in 2008 caused these downturns, as they were occurring all along during the past ten and a half years of Perry’s Governorship!

Perry has also had more people executed, including those on which there was doubt, than under Bush, and he is proud of this, as if that is an accomplishment! And the people around Perry make Bush’s “people” look brilliant by comparison!

The only virtue Perry would bring to the White House would be to make us “appreciate” George W. Bush for the first time, as the further deterioration of the Presidency would be in full swing!

Is Rick Santorum Becoming Soft And Fuzzy?

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, the only person in the Republican Presidential race who has served in the Senate, has had a reputation for hard nosed, aggressive rhetoric throughout his career and during his Presidential run.

Santorum, who ended up fourth in the Ames, Iowa Straw Poll, behind former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, said yesterday that he will not drop out of the race as Pawlenty has done.

At the same time, both yesterday and last week, Rick Santorum sounded as if he is becoming soft and fuzzy!

Imagine this social conservative, who has strongly condemned gay rights and gay marriage, being critical of Iran for its treatment of gays! What has happened that he worries about gay rights in Iran, but not in America?

Yesterday, he was strongly critical of former Texas Governor Rick Perry for his threatening language toward Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke. Santorum said it was unPresidential behavior, comparing it to Michigan Congressman John Conyers calling for the impeachment of former President George W. Bush years ago.

Santorum declared that someone running for President should not use loose language threatening people and accusing them of treason because we do not agree with their views on public policy, and also should not talk about impeachment of a President!

Austin is not Washington, DC, Santorum said, and he declared that Perry needs a learning curve to understand the differences. He seemed to be passing judgment on Texas politics as he criticized Perry.

This is all very shocking, as by showing concern for gay rights in Iran, criticizing an attack on the Federal Reserve, and ridiculing Texas politics, all sound like Santorum is losing his social conservatism and his Tea Party credentials, or his attempt to gain their backing!

Rick Santorum actually sounds reasonable for the first time in years! What is going on, Rick?

The Escalating Extremist Rhetoric Of Rick Perry: Reckless And Irresponsible!

Texas Governor Rick Perry has only been in the Republican Presidential nomination race for less than 72 hours, and already, we are witnessing escalating extremist rhetoric that makes him the most dangerous and reckless potential nominee of the GOP since Barry Goldwater!

Wait until Perry begins his vicious attacks on Mitt Romney, Jon Huntsman, and even Michele Bachmann!

This man has displayed already, while Governor of Texas, that he has no limits to irresponsible statements, as witness his threat two years ago that Texas might secede from the Union, even though that is an illegal, unpatriotic, and treasonous statement to make 150 years after the Civil War!

Perry has the gall to suggest that the Federal Reserve under Ben Bernanke, trying to deal with the Great Recession, is promoting treason by trying to stimulate the economy and promote investment and job growth. It is part of his desire to strip the federal government of any control over the destinies of the American people, and instead promote the old, outworn doctrine of states rights, despite the fact that Texas and almost all other states have done a horrible job of dealing with the needs and problems of their citizenry!

Perry also has a lot of nerve to suggest that Barack Obama does not love his country, when he has suggested Texas leave the Union. He is promoting a continuation of the “Birther” myth, that Obama is not out to defend his country’s interest, even though Obama has been much more successful than George W. Bush in his pursuit of terrorists, including the massive use of drones in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and the removal of more terrorist leaders of the Taliban and Al Qaeda, including the greatest accomplishment of all, Osama Bin Laden, in two and a half years, than Bush and Dick Cheney could bring about in eight years!

Rick Perry will stop at nothing in the politics of personal destruction of Barack Obama, and soon, his GOP opponents will discover the viciousness of this man who makes George W. Bush look like a moderate!

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke Advice: Government Stimulus Spending Needed Now, Dealing With Deficit Later!

Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke gave testimony yesterday on the economy before a Senate committee, and emphasized the urgency of the government spending money to stimulate the economy in the short term, to make up for lack of private spending!

The issue of the deficit, Bernanke said, must be dealt with, as it is a threat to our long term economy, but right now the emphasis has to be on promoting economic growth, or else there is a danger of a further downturn in the economy!

Considering that Bernanke was appointed by President George W. Bush, and is seen as a conservative, this is advice that should be taken seriously by Congress and the Obama Administration!

Better to work to expand the economy, than to follow the lead of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1937, who listened to conservatives who complained about government spending, cut the spending, and helped, therefore, to cause the Recession of 1937-1938! President Obama and the Democrats MUST take action to promote economic growth, no matter what conservatives and Republicans say!

The Nerve Of Dick Cheney To Attack Barack Obama!

Former Vice President Dick Cheney has a lot of nerve attacking President Obama for trying to deal with the economic, diplomatic and military mess left by the Bush-Cheney Administration.

Cheney thinks Obama is a leftist radical who undermines the country and has committed treason. This is very strong language, considering Obama has decided to stay in Afghanistan and escalate American involvement, has kept on Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke (both Bush appointees), and has continued the TARP program initiated by Bush.

To call Obama a leftist radical is ridiculous, as he is a clear cut moderate when it comes to military and economic matters. If anything, he has been criticized by liberals for not fighting hard enough for the public option on health care, going slow on gay rights, and trying to support the auto industry, banks and insurance companies that helped to cause this economic mess we are in.

Obama has, like Franklin D Roosevelt before him, saved the capitalistic system and aimed at restoring our diplomatic image abroad. This makes him a mainstream moderate with some liberal tendencies, not a radical leftist in any form.

But then again, when was Dick Cheney correct? There is a long list of inaccurate statements, misjudgments and actions by the former Vice President, and one could only wish that he would just go away, but that, unfortunately, is not going to happen.

Dick Cheney is a burden on the Republican party, and until he is repudiated as a lost cause, the GOP has no future!