Noah Kristula-Green is the Managing Editor and a Contributor to FrumForum. He was formerly a Web Intern at The New Republic. He lives in Washington DC, grew up in Tokyo, and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in political science from The University of Chicago. His email is noahkgreen [at] gmail.com & you can follow him on Twitter: @noahkgreen
Vincent Reinhart, a former director at the Federal Reserve, has written an economic outlook paper for the American Enterprise Institute. He argues there is a 40% chance of a double dip recession and that the Fed needs to respond with accommodating monetary policy.
Reinhart’s gloomy picture is unfortunately not new. In fact, his 40% figure is just the latest in several predictions made by other economists about the high chance of a double dip.
Rick Perry is getting a lot of scrutiny for comments in his book Fed Up! where he argues that making income tax constitutional through the Sixteenth Amendment has lead America on a “road to serfdom“. He writes that the income tax could be replaced by a Fair Tax:
Another option would be to repeal the Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution (providing the power for the income tax) altogether, and then pursue an alternative model of taxation such as a national sales tax or the Fair Tax. The time has come to stop talking about fixing the broken and burdensome tax code and to take bold action to replace it with one that is not a burden for the taxpayer and that provides only the modest revenue needed to perform the basic constitutional functions of the federal government.
Republicans believe the economy is weak because of “uncertainty” created by the Obama administration. Yet a recent statement by a Federal Reserve President suggests that if there is any uncertainty, it should be blamed on the Republicans for forcing a standoff with the White House over the debt ceiling. This is not from the remarks of an inflation dove, but rather, one of its hawks who recently dissented from the Fed’s plan for further easing.
Rick Perry hasn’t been running for president for a full week and he has already made a significant gaffe. ThinkProgress has caught video of Perry saying that Ben Bernanke’s efforts at monetary stimulus are “almost treasonous” and that he would treat Bernanke “pretty ugly down in Texas.”
The comment is wrong from a policy standpoint and the accusation of treason is uncalled for, but the unfortunate truth is that Perry is accurately expressing the emotional sentiments of the conservative movement.
President Narayana Kocherlakota of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis was one of three Federal Reserve Board members who dissented from their recent decision to keep interest rates low until at least the middle of 2013.
He has taken the step of stating why he opposed this more accommodative policy in a public letter. His opinion seems to be that unemployment may be high, but at least it is not as high as it was in 2010 in absolute terms:
Ryan Lizza’s reporting on Michele Bachmann’s intellectual background is invaluable. It allows for past statements that Bachmann has made which sound utterly bizarre to be placed into context. For example: were you aware that Bachmann believes there is a link between postmodern philosophy and efforts to curtail abstinence education?
As we get closer to 2012, there is one chart that pundits and columnists need to constantly refer back to in their writing – a scatterplot that shows how changes in real disposable income correlate with the success of the incumbent party in presidential elections: