Yes! I am one of those people who are never satisfied with just bringing up an issue and letting it go. And at the very least, I am not satisfied that I said everything about Bush’s economic picks in my last post.
I am not nearly as bothered by Glenn Hubbard as I am bout Kevin Warsh.
The first reason is bad vibes, and bad impressions. For some reason I keep remembering the only photograph I’ve ever seen of Warsh outside of the Reuters story as him striking a pose like Egyptian hieroglyphs. It never happened. But that’s the way I remember it.
The second reason is that Warsh is not even an economist. He’s a political scientist and lawyer. He got his BA from Stanford in public policy, graduated from law school, then dropped out of the Harvard Business School econ program. It’s just so easy to be an inflation hawk when one doesn’t understand what it means when there is no possible state of the universe where money can be tight – and that is providing at least a sliver of the benefit of a doubt.
The third reason is that back in 2009, Warsh was with Bernanke at a congressional hearing on the financial crisis where he said the best thing the Fed can do for unemployment is to control inflation. They say body language is 90% of communication; and I don’t think I have ever witnessed such a lack of empathy since I was in high school.
The fourth reason is finding out just how much 1%-er he really is combined with the rest of the story. He got the policy he advocated while shrugging off what it meant for everyone else. Plebs just don’t matter because, well, they’re plebs who are only good for buying the Michael Kors or Coach purses or $75 face cream – and most of them can’t even do that. So why should he care if they have no jobs?
The fifth reason is more about Bush. Because of reason number two, maybe someone can explain to me how the hell Warsh got to the top of Bush’s charts. It certainly isn’t because he’s a seasoned and successful technocrat. That he surely isn’t. He’s been consistently wrong about monetary matters. Inflation hawks are obsolete and so is their advice. It leaves the impression of a quid quo pro, that Federal department posts are up for sale to highest donor with the most ambition. Nothing of it being about civics and public service because after all, the plebs are just plebs. The only service they get is, “would you like it with or without a blindfold?”
With such a very a thin line between donations and bribery that appears to be quite blurred in this instance it seems such a pity for Bush to take that kind of political risk on someone who has nothing but cash to offer and has already thrown at least one benefactor under the bus – Bernanke – with his, er… um, candidly subversive op-ed in the WSJ in November 2012. Surely, loyalty or lack thereof must mean something. If not, then Jeb Bush has no business in the oval office.