Time Magazine Tells Us to "Thank" - Not Fire, THANK - Ben Bernanke

by: David Sirota

Wed Dec 16, 2009 at 08:32

NOTE: The Senate Banking Committee will vote on Bernanke's renomination on Thursday at 9:30am ET. Call your senator and tell him/her to vote against him.

Everyday I wake up and think I've seen the craziest, most sickening shit the day before. And nearly every day, I realize I haven't. It's kind of like that scene in Office Space - the one where Peter says every day is the worst day of his life. Only it's not a movie - it's real life.

Today's example comes from Time magazine. It's not that the magazine named Ben Bernanke "Person of the Year." I mean, who really gives a shit who a couple of Time magazine editors think is the "Person of the Year." But what is important is the conventional wisdom that the magazine puts forward. You can see it in the sub-headline of its piece (as pictured above):

"The story of the year was a weak economy that could have been much, much weaker. Thank the man who runs the Federal Reserve, our mild-mannered economic overlord.

As I showed in my newspaper column last week, Ben Bernanke fell down on the regulatory job in the lead up to the Wall Street meltdown. He acknowledged this in front of Congress. He then tried to clean up his mess by handing his banker friends trillions of our taxpayer dollars. The result of his regulatory failures and then massive bailouts has been a destructive recession, 10 percent unemployment and debt as far as the eye can see.

And for this, the media and political Establishment would have us "thank" him for saving us.

As I said, everyday I wake up and think I've seen the craziest, most sickening shit the day before. And nearly every day, I realize I haven't.

David Sirota :: Time Magazine Tells Us to "Thank" - Not Fire, THANK - Ben Bernanke

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lol. (4.00 / 1)
David, i just knew when i saw this that it would drive you insane. of course you're not wrong, but when i heard about this, i just laughed. Time insults itself and its heritage as a magazine of note by doing this, but then again its credibility has been shot for years. it will be fun to watch them go under.  

Imho this is more like The Truman Show... (4.00 / 2)
...when the spotlight falls from "heaven" and nearly hits Truman. Something isn't quite right with this world, if we only could figure out, what...

Down the rabbit hole (0.00 / 0)
on that one. Wow.

We are a Zen society (0.00 / 0)
only the "here and now" matters.

Boy, you and me both! (4.00 / 2)
I woke ups this morning in a hotel room and turned on the odious "Morning Joe" to hear the bizarro news that Chief Ben Prints a Lot is "Man of the Year".  We are so far down the rabbit hole, I can see no way out  I'm in the movie business and I can see why our industry is in the toilet.  It's weirdness like this.  How can we look forward to Tim Burton's "Alice in Wonderland" when we Americans are living in some real nightmare version of Wonderland where people who bore the socks off you as they rob you blind are presented as cooler than Johnny Depp.  Lord have mercy on us.

Taibbi, Sirota, the folks at  blackagendareport are the only ones keeping me from wanting to take a lot of Ritalin and dribble in my bib while looking out my window.

Why did Krugman endorse Bernanke? (0.00 / 0)

"I think Bernanke has done a really good job," Krugman said. "He failed to see this coming and he was behind the curve in early phases. But he's been really very good in the sense that it's really very hard to see how anyone could have done more to stem this crisis."

"He's earned the right to a second term," Krugman, 56, said yesterday in an interview in Kuala Lumpur. "He turned the Fed into the financial intermediary of last resort. When the banking system failed to deliver capital where it was needed, he put the Fed into the markets."


Krugman is a progressive, right? What do you guys think of this opinion?  

Are you deliberately spinning, or just clueless? (0.00 / 0)
Krugman WITHDREW that support after Bernanke rode for a fall during the Senate hearings! The story you linked is from August 10, 2009, didn't you notice? If you read Krugman's blog regularly, it would have been obvious to you that this is outdated.

[ Parent ]
Not sure about the translation, maybe "rode for a fall" is wrong. (0.00 / 0)
What I'm saying is, Bernanke dug himself into a pit by voicing horribly rightwing anti-middle-class crap during the hearings. Krugman was flabbergasted, and essentially wrote he can't support someone who holds such idiotically wrong views. Oh, and this had been mentioned in our discussions here, too. If only you would have paid attention.

[ Parent ]
what's your problem? (0.00 / 0)
I'm supposed to follow everything here closely in order to ask a question? I just recalled Krugman had endorsed Bernanke and asked what was up with that. You could have provided all that information without being an asshole.

[ Parent ]
My problem is that you coming up with that ole story looks like deliberate spin. (0.00 / 0)
Sry, but to me it's not very likely that you simply stumbled about a Bloomberg article from effing four months ago just recently! If I'm wrong about this, sry, but it was my impression that this probably is deliberate spin. And then, generally, I think we should invest a bit of work into finding answers by ourselves, instead of simply relying on a single source and running the risk to be embarassingly wrong. Your mileage may vary, of course...

And as for that I "could have provided all that information without being an asshole", well, that's a point. However, I'm an honest guy, and so I don't try to hush up my ugly character!

[ Parent ]
Link to where Krugman withdraws endorsement? (0.00 / 0)
I did a quick search and found a mixed bag of Krugman comments praising and criticizing Bernanke, and none officially withdrawing his endorsement. I've seen a lot of articles, even recent ones, taking note of Krugman's endorsement, none mentioning a withdrawal.

So, if you don't mind linking to the article where Krugman withdraws the endorsement, that would be appreciated.

[ Parent ]
Weell, I'm referring to the December 4 posting, of course. (0.00 / 0)
Somewhat obvious, since the hearings were on December 3. Here's what Krugman said:
Bear in mind also that fiscal policy is slow to get underway. Waiting to be absolutely, totally sure that we really need more strikes me as deeply irresponsible.


Now calling someones stances "deeply irresponsoible" certainly is not an endorsement for an important position! However, I kind fo remembered the crticism to be even stronger, but maybe I mixed this up with the comment by Atrios:

I said yesterday that I didn't have strong feelings about Bernanke's confirmation. It's not that I'm a fan, it's just that I didn't imagine anyone who would be on the likely short list to replace him would be any better.

But his testimony today was awful. Apparently more fiscal stimulus is bad according to Helicopter Ben. It's his mandate to maintain full employment. He hasn't done it. The Fed's effectively at zero interest rates. So, basically, 10.2% unemployment is ok with Ben.


[ Parent ]
That doesn't sound like a retraction (0.00 / 0)
His endorsement was an official NY Times editorial that was widely distributed. If he was retracting his endorsement, I think he would make that as clear and as widely disseminated as possible. At least I would hope he would take responsibility for his endorsement and address it directly, since it carries a lot of weight, especially for progressives.

What you posted is indeed critical, but pundits often criticize those who they endorse more broadly. It happens every day, in every political arena, in every blog. That's not a convincing retraction at all, imo, making your earlier comments even worse. In fact, he just wrote a new editorial on Bernanke, and there was no mention of a retraction, and included some fairly significant praise as well.    

[ Parent ]
Old boss (0.00 / 0)
Bernanke was the department chair for the economics department at Princeton.  He was Krugman's boss and (supposedly) friend.

[ Parent ]
Required reading (4.00 / 3)
A clear understanding of the current state of U.S. political life is greatly helped with a little light reading:

1. 1984 by Orwell (think Ronald Reagan)
2. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (think George Bush)
3. The Trial by Franz Kafka  (think Gitmo)
4. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (think President Obama as Zaphod Beeblebrox)
5. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce (think the current congressional healthcare debate)

ROFL (0.00 / 0)
Excellent. Obama as Zaphod is frighteningly apt.

[ Parent ]
Not a joke (4.00 / 1)
At first, I thought Time was naming Bernanke specifically for the harm he did to the economy.  The Person of the Year, after all, is the individual with the greatest effect for good or ill.  Hitler and Stalin were Time Men of the Year back when.

But no, this is a nauseating piece.  "Economic overlord"?  Are we serfs?

My first thought is that Time Warner is too big to fail.  Maybe not.  They have a habit of buying companies, running them into the ground, and selling them at a loss.  When AOL floundered, the Time corporate/Republican fluinkies took back control of the company in 2003 despite owning a minority of the shares.  Ted Turner lost control of CNN and it has headed downward and right ever since.

If Time and Fox both went under the world would be a better place.

connecting the dots (0.00 / 0)
All I can do is keep connecting the pertinent dots:

Ben Bernancke is a member of the Bilderberg Group. So are the folowing:

paul gigot henry kissinger henry kravis hank paulson richard perle condolezza rice mark sanford paul wolfowitz alan greenspan douglas feith dan quayle donald rumsfeld im eithner larry summers bill clinton hillary clinton bill kristol etc etc etc

Corporations that attend Bilderberg events:

chase manhattan bank goldman sachs aig washington post company xerox ford motor exxon mobil shell bp fox news corporation merck archer daniels midland monsanto ibm etc etc etc

David Rockefeller at a Bilderberg event:

"We are grateful to the Washington Post, The New York Times, Time Magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected their promises of discretion for almost forty years. It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subjected to the lights of publicity during those years. But, the world is now more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world government. The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the national auto-determination practiced in past centuries."


So, did any of that come up in the Time article

This is more ridiculous (0.00 / 0)
than what Time said.

I didn't think that was possible.

Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.

[ Parent ]
Munchausen syndrome by proxy (0.00 / 0)
It's like Munchausen syndrome by proxy.  You cause or by negligence cause illness and then "ride" to the rescue.


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