Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry
has taken a lot of heat from Democrats and Republicans alike for his incendiary criticism of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. But The Wall Street Journal
, while admonishing Perry’s choice of words about Bernanke, defends the substance of his dissatisfaction with the Fed.
Perry suggested Bernanke would be “almost treasonous” to ease monetary policy further and that Texans would treat him "pretty ugly."
“His poor choice of words aside, the Texas Governor is right to put monetary policy front and center in the 2012 Presidential debate,” The Journal stated in an editorial. Perry said the Fed has debased the dollar with its massive expansion of the money supply.
“Everybody knows Mr. Perry meant no literal harm and was indulging the irrational exuberance that is one of his trademarks,” The editorial says. “The real news isn't the rhetorical gaffe but the substance and politics of Mr. Perry's demarche. Here we have a Presidential candidate, a Texas populist no less, laying out a position in favor of sound money.”
Perry understands the economic concerns of the middle class better than most of the Washington-Wall Street establishment, The Journal said. “Their meager salary increases are being washed away with another burst of commodity inflation caused by near-zero interest rates and quantitative easing,” the editorial states.
“This is what happens when politicians and central bankers try to use monetary policy to compensate for the slow growth caused by bad fiscal and regulatory policies.”
Perry has actually performed a “public service,” The Journal maintains. “Merely by raising the Fed as a subject, Mr. Perry has sent a political signal to the folks at the Eccles Building to tread carefully as they conduct monetary policy in the coming months,” the paper says.
“Mr. Perry and the other GOP candidates should be more careful in their language, and more precise about the Fed's mistakes. But they shouldn't shrink from debating the subject of sound money that is so crucial to restoring American prosperity.”
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