Thursday, December 17, 2009

Man of the Year

Ben Bernanke won Time Magazine's "Man of the Year."[1] The article opens with: "A bald man with a gray beard and tired eyes is sitting in his oversize Washington office, talking about the economy. He doesn't have a commanding presence. He isn't a mesmerizing speaker. He has none..." and it goes on further like this. You know, Time, when I'm up for nomination for forecasting the fate of the dollar, you can just go ahead and pick the other guy.

In what has to be regarded as an embarassing setback for Bernanke, a hold has been placed by Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on his confirmation for another term as Fed Chairman.[2] This means he will require 60 votes for confirmation. Almost surely he will get that, but this stretches out the process and gathers unwanted attention in an area of politics that I imagine tends to prefer quiet and usually enjoys support from both parties. In today's panel hearing he won by what must have been a concerning 16-7 margin. Though he will be confirmed, this cannot be regarded as a victory.

Sen. Jim Bunning (R-Ky.) noted that past recipients of Time's "Man of the Year" included Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin (twice), Yasser Arafat, Vladimir Putin and Richard Nixon (twice).

1. Person of the Year 2009 (Time).
2. Senate Panel Endorses Bernanke for Second Term (LA Times).

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