Where were the “conservatives” when the “going was good”?

As soon as the CPI numbers are announced “hysteria flourishes”. Ron Paul, given his position as chair of the House committee that oversees monetary policy, may be considered the “representative conservative agent”. After Bernanke´s recent press conference following the April FOMC meeting, he stated:

A “staged press conference will not be enough to stop the growing demand for real Fed transparency,” said Paul, adding that “the American people want real answers about Fed bailouts, lending to foreign banks, and most of all inflation.”

The Congressman vowed to press ahead with his efforts to audit the Fed, and to continue to expose Bernanke’s deliberate devaluation of the dollar, which Paul urges is paving the way for “hyperinflation and the destruction of our currency.”

As the figures show the “inflation fetish” is downright ridiculous. But we know it´s not about inflation at all…

Steve Chapman takes the histrionics seriously:

“The Bernanke policy of printing money is setting the stage for mass inflation,” claims former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, decries “the inflation all Americans suffer due to the Fed’s relentless monetary expansion.” Former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., fears not just inflation but “potentially hyperinflation.”

The claim has a surface plausibility. If the money supply is growing and prices are rising, what more evidence do we need? But first impressions, in this case, are badly misleading.

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4 thoughts on “Where were the “conservatives” when the “going was good”?

  1. Or during the reagan years for that matter.
    Do you think this new wave of inflation hysteria is due to the growth of Austrian economics websites on the Internet? I feel like the new breed of folk-Austrian economics is very successful on blogs, because it aligns with a moral intuition that suffering leads to better character, and also because it appeals to everyday physics analogies (“what comes up must come down” ; “you’re just taking water from one end of the pool and dumping it in the other”). Unless you know some math, chances are you will choose your economic philosophy based on moral intuition or an appealing analogy.
    I also think some of it might be due to marketing efforts by gold-sellers. My father recently sent me a video warning about hyperinflation and asked if he should buy gold coins. And I know Glenn Beck’s tv show is sponsored by goldline. There are many predatory investment sites that look like informative foundations and prey on older people like my father. See the National Inflation Association, for example.

  2. Excellent commentary.

    Certain right-wing elements are mau-mauing inflation for political reasons. Others conflate reckless federal military and civilian spending with Fed “accommodation.” Then you have gold nuts and others who see absolute price stability as having a mysterious moral virtue.

    Sometimes it is difficult to know how to engage an argument.

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