Brad DeLong is appropriately gobsmacked by this statement from John McCain:
Finally, the Federal Reserve should get back to its core business of responsibly managing our money supply and inflation. It needs to get out of the business of bailouts. The Fed needs to return to protecting the purchasing power of the dollar. A strong dollar will reduce energy and food prices. It will stimulate sustainable economic growth and get this economy moving again…
As DeLong notes, preventing financial implosion is part of the reason we have central banks to begin with. But more than that, advocating a “strong dollar” under these circumstances is some old-school, hard money nuttiness. After donning a variety of ideological suits these last few days, McCain seems to have found his inner Andrew Mellon. It was Mellon who, on the eve of the Great Depression, cheered on the impending immiseration:
It will purge the rottenness out of the system. High costs of living and high living will come down. People will work harder, live a more moral life. Values will be adjusted, and enterprising people will pick up the wrecks from less competent people.
First he was channeling Hoover, now Mellon. The intellectual DNA of conservatism is, I suppose, admirably consistent.