The Spectacle Blog

Was Bernanke Treasonous in Fall ‘08?

By on 8.16.11 | 9:06AM

Liberals are getting fired up about statements Gov. Rick Perry made last night about Fed chairman Ben Bernanke. Here is what he said, in a video with an inflammatory name:

His words were:

If this guy prints more money between now and the election, I don't know what y'all would do to him in Iowa, but we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas. Printing more money to play politics at this particular time in American history is almost treacherous, or treasonous, in my opinion. 

Perry is responsible for his own words. If Joe Biden or other members have engaged in reckless or beyond-the-pale rhetoric (e.g., "terrorists"), that doesn't excuse Perry to do the same.

Here's the question I'd like to see Perry asked:

Your predecessor as governor of Texas, George W. Bush, appointed Ben Bernanke to the Fed in 2006. In 2008, during an election year in which the Republican incumbency was threatened, Bernanke effectively doubled the monetary base. In other words, he more or less printed money on a massive scale. Was that "almost treasonous"? If so, what is Bush's culpability, given that he knew beforehand from Bernanke's academic work that he would print money in response to a financial crisis?

Perry obviously wasn't ready to field this question about the Fed, and made a allusion that he probably didn't intend and which his political detractors immediately seized on. It would be easy enough to correct, and then move on.

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