Fed rage boils over on Capitol Hill
Fed chief Ben Bernanke is expected to win confirmation to a second term. But it won't be pretty. The push in Congress to rein in the central bank is gaining steam.
By Jennifer Liberto, CNNMoney.com senior writer
Last Updated: November 28, 2009: 4:44 PM ET
WASHINGTON (CNNMoney.com) -- Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has a tough road ahead.
Bernanke, whose four-year term expires in January, is certain to face a contentious Senate banking panel at his confirmation hearing on Thursday. He is also defending against the sharpest attack on Federal Reserve powers ever.
In an opinion piece to be published in Sunday's Washington Post, Bernanke blasted two moves to limit the Fed - a House measure to dig into the central bank's books and a Senate bill that would strip the Fed of its regulatory power. [...]
Well, it is about darn time!
Now I want to direct your attention to a comment by Rep. Mel Watt, D-N.C.:
""I recognize the Fed currently has no political capital. Everyone would like to beat up on the Fed and call them the bad guys," Watt said. "If we make this decision on a political basis, I know what the result will be.""
The Federal Reserve is a PRIVATE BANK and should NOT have political capital.
Now for item two. A quote by Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H.:
""Make no mistake; this move to bring the Fed's conduct of monetary policy under the control of Congress is a grave threat to our economy," Gregg said."
Senator Gregg is clearly not familiar with the U.S. Constitution. In particular, he is not familiar with Article I, Section 8:
The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
To borrow Money on the credit of the United States;
To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;
To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;
To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures; [...]
It is the DUTY of the Congress to regulate monetary policy. Senator Gregg seems to think it is the job of a privately held bank.
It is the DUTY of Congress to coin money. Again, Congress seems to think that it is the job of a privately held bank to print our money. Read your dollar bills - they all say "Federal Reserve Note". In purist constitutional terms, the bills are counterfeit.
If The Federal Reserve is going to act as an agent of The United Sates, then why is it we cannot audit them? All the defense contractors can be audited. Why is it that the one and singular organization that has total control over the economy of the United States is allowed to operate with near impunity?
Washington policy analyst Brian Gardner of investment firm Keefe Bruyette & Woods says:
"We're in a very populist era and that populism is manifesting itself in a dislike and distrust in large institutions. That means the Fed is one of those targets."
What he misses is that we are in a populist era for the reason that Congress has been ignoring and avoiding their constituency, shirking their Constitutionally assign duties, letting corporations write policy and laws, and The People are catching on.