My new Think Again column revisits the terrible “problem” of liberal academia, and it’s here.
Bob Kuttner gave Kabuki Democracy a nice review in The American Prospect here.
And the Jewish Journal of LA reviewed it here.
And CSPAN’s Book TV will broadcast a talk I gave at Busboys and Poets in Washington DC this Saturday at 7 and Sunday at 1. More info here.
Lotta reviews tomorrow, but now here’s Reed:
Inflation and Puppy Love: The House Committee Circus Comes to Town
By Reed Richardson
And so it begins. The new Republican majority has settled into control over the House and started holding hearings. And if yesterday’s proceedings are any indication, it will be a long two years for the White House and the American public.
Over at the House Budget Committee, Rep. Ron Paul kicked off the proceedings with what looked to be a libertarians-only kaffeeklatsch, scheduled under the oh-so-subtle question of “Can Monetary Policy Really Create Jobs?” And just to make sure he got the answer he wanted, Paul brought in from the dusty corners of the academic world some guy named Thomas J. DiLorenzo who mainly has a beef with Abraham Lincoln but who has also referred to our central banking system as “the Fed and its legalized counterfeit operations” and characterized TARP as “appointing the U.S. Treasury Secretary as the nation’s first financial dictator.” Welcome to the new reality of Capitol Hill.
But that was merely the undercard to the main event, a separate panel where the rest of the GOP Budget Committee members got to hector Fed Chairman Bernanke and try their darnedest to inflate the inflation boogeyman again. All of it as part of their quest to undermine the Fed’s quantitative easing program, which, sadly, passes for the only kind of economic stimulus left to the administration in the current political climate. Of course, this fear-mongering just doesn’t resonate as well when recent business news headlines about US inflation read thusly:
“U.S. Consumer Prices Excluding Food, Fuel Record Smallest Gain on Record”
Undaunted, new Committee Chairman and purported GOP wunderkind Paul Ryan wasn’t about to let a little thing like core inflation standing at historically low levels stop him. He just knows that inflation is too sneaky to be trusted, so he’s advocating that we pre-emptively attack it now, sort of Bush Doctrine-style, before it’s too late and “the cow is out of the barn.” (Uhhh, cow?! Typical Midwestern elitist, can’t even get his farm idioms straight.)