Adam Posen is on the BoE Monetary Policy Committee, so he surely can be considered an insider. He has an op-ed in the NYT aptly titled: “Central Bankers: Stop Dithering. Do Something”. That´s very different from Atlanta Fed Lockhart suggestion that “we should “dither with improving communications”!
I don´t agree with all Posen says, especially regarding his concentration on the interest rate transmission mechanism and that monetary stimulus would decrease long rates. If done convincingly, monetary “stimulus” would more likely raise rates!
But in this he is perfectly right:
Independent central bankers tend to become very squeamish about expressing support for any particular government proposal, especially when it involves agreeing to buy government bonds. Tragedies have occurred, however, when independent central banks let worries about the perception that they were too close to the government prevent them from doing something constructive in times of crisis.
Central bank officials have wasted too much time over the last year worrying about how their institutions would appear to markets, to politicians and to the public, were they to undertake more stimulus. Sometimes you have to do the right thing even if the benefits take time to become evident. If we do not undertake the monetary stimulus that the grim outlook calls for, then our economies and our people will suffer avoidable and potentially lasting damage.