Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dear Senator

Dear Senator Franken:

I am a resident of Minneapolis, Minnesota. I write to ask that you please oppose the re-confirmation of Ben Bernanke for Federal Reserve Chairman. Bernanke has proven he cannot fulfill the Federal Reserve's dual mandate of price stability and full employment and thus has shown he is not qualified to serve a second term as Chairman. He has become a polarizing figure whose past is inextricably entangled with the financial crisis that grips our country.

Your esteemed colleague, Senator Russ Feingold, succinctly explains Bernanke's lack of qualification for the office:

"A chief responsibility of the Chairman of the Federal Reserve is to ensure a sound financial system. Under the watch of Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve permitted grossly irresponsible financial activities that led to the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Under Chairman Bernanke's watch predatory mortgage lending flourished, and 'too big to fail' financial giants were permitted to engage in activities that put our nation's economy at risk. And as it responds to the crisis it helped to usher in, the Federal Reserve under Chairman Bernanke's leadership continues to resist appropriate efforts to review that response, how taxpayers' money was being used, and whether it acted appropriately."

In the simple language of a lifelong Minnesotan: we should not give the keys back to the person who crashed the car.

Senator Franken, we need fresh faces and new ideas in government, which is why I supported you in the 2008 election.

Jobs and economic policy are critical issues to my family and to the voters of Minnesota. Please consider my request.

Thank you.



Tip of the hat to Snarf Snarf for the idea.


J G-W said...

Nice letter.

Stephen Kuenzli said...

Very nice. I like the Feingold quote.

Knight of Nothing said...

Thanks John and Stephen. From the sounds of things right now, it looks like he'll be confirmed. It's really too bad, but I guess we (still) live in an oligarchy.

Regarding Obama's support of these Wall Street types, one of my pals on pals put it thus: "Dude panders to people who will never vote for him while breaking promises to his his voter base. At this point the Republicans could nominate Barney Fife and win hands down."

J G-W said...

Well, they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting that this time you'll get different results.

Truth is, this happens every time. No matter how you get elected, once you get into office you become part of a machine that has nothing to do with whatever it was that got you elected.

Knight of Nothing said...

I guess I am insane for having voted for a democrat again :-)

I wasn't an enthusiastic supporter, but even so, this was the biggest bait-and-switch in my memory. Austan Goolsbee and Karen Kornbluh were two of Obama's top economic and policy advisers during his campaign. They crafted his anti-big-bank and populist rhetoric that absolutely got him elected.

While we were still flush with Obama's victory, Obama fired those two and brought in Wall Street. It's a pretty striking reversal.

J G-W said...

Yes... I read my comments on that post. Embarrassing.

You know, I guess the role of each political party is piss off half the electorate so bad that they forget all the slimy antics of the other party long enough to elect it again. You know, one hand slimes the other.

J G-W said...

OK, one last effort to salvage optimism:

At least the pretense of owing accountability to the folks who elected you is better than blatant tyranny.

What the hell am I saying??? I'd rather be lied to?

Aw, f*** it.

Knight of Nothing said...

Wow, John - that is some of the most cynical commentary I've seen from you in a long time. But I suppose politics is a frightful thing to follow - it really is a meat-grinder. Don't feel embarrassed by your earlier comments; it's Obama who should be embarrassed by them.

Incidentally, Bernanke cruised to victory. Both Klobuchar and Franken voted in favor of the motion. Bastids.

J G-W said...

OK, I was being a little flip.

If I'd commented in a more serious vein, I guess I would have volunteered that from a practical standpoint, we the voters really have no choice but to keep trying to work rationally and responsibly for what we want.

You writing that letter, for instance.

But to put my lament in less flip terms... Yes, I'm afraid that the majority of forces shaping public policy are not affected by the democratic process. We're left sort of hoping that the oligarchy making the real decisions will at least be more benign than malign.

Knight of Nothing said...

CORRECTION! Only Klobuchar voted in favor of confirmation; Franken voted against confirming Bernanke. Thank you, senator!