This story would be comic, were it not so serious. It's about "The Fed," a hydra-headed creature of enormous power, which it exercises from within the midst of a marble cavern in Washington that is unapproachable by commoners.
This story would be comic, were it not so serious. It’s about “The Fed,” a hydra-headed creature of enormous power, which it exercises from within the midst of a marble cavern in Washington that is unapproachable by commoners.
The Fed is the Federal Reserve, which is a private, for-profit bank that is run by and mostly for other big bankers. But it’s also its own, secretive branch of our national government – the Fed creates its own money, it sets our interest rates, it regulates Wall Street, and – as we’ve recently learned the hard way – it bails out Wall Street.
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The Fed operates largely beyond the purview of Congress or even the White House, and both the media and the public are essentially shut out from scrutinizing its financial machinations. The banking gods who dwell within the Fed’s temple are said to have knowledge, even wisdom, that the rest of us cannot fathom, so they must be left alone to make their decisions.
But, wait – aren’t these the same omniscient gods that failed to see – much less forestall – the looming financial disaster that Wall Street finaglers were building atop a very shaky housing market? Yes, the Fed gods were so intoxicated with the fumes of their own conventional wisdom that they failed abjectly as regulators, as public servants – and, most certainly, as gods.
Yet, without apologizing for (or even acknowledging) their failure, these denizens of the temple now insist that Congress entrust them with even more authority over our financial well-being. However, many lawmakers – led by such longtime knowledgeable Fed critics as Rep. Ron Paul and Sen. Bernie Sanders – are daring to challenge the gods, proposing steps to rein-in their arrogance, aloofness, and authority. For more information on this challenge, contact the watchdog group, OMB Watch, at www.ombwatch.org/fiscal_stewardship.
“If Fed Missed Bubble, How Will It See New One?” The New York Times, January 6, 2010.