Sunday, May 06, 2012

how the federal reserve bought the economics profession...,

HuffPo | The Federal Reserve, through its extensive network of consultants, visiting scholars, alumni and staff economists, so thoroughly dominates the field of economics that real criticism of the central bank has become a career liability for members of the profession, an investigation by the Huffington Post has found.

This dominance helps explain how, even after the Fed failed to foresee the greatest economic collapse since the Great Depression, the central bank has largely escaped criticism from academic economists. In the Fed's thrall, the economists missed it, too.

"The Fed has a lock on the economics world," says Joshua Rosner, a Wall Street analyst who correctly called the meltdown. "There is no room for other views, which I guess is why economists got it so wrong."

One critical way the Fed exerts control on academic economists is through its relationships with the field's gatekeepers. For instance, at the Journal of Monetary Economics, a must-publish venue for rising economists, more than half of the editorial board members are currently on the Fed payroll -- and the rest have been in the past.

The Fed failed to see the housing bubble as it happened, insisting that the rise in housing prices was normal. In 2004, after "flipping" had become a term cops and janitors were using to describe the way to get rich in real estate, then-Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said that "a national severe price distortion [is] most unlikely." A year later, current Chairman Ben Bernanke said that the boom "largely reflect strong economic fundamentals."

The Fed also failed to sufficiently regulate major financial institutions, with Greenspan -- and the dominant economists -- believing that the banks would regulate themselves in their own self-interest.

Despite all this, Bernanke has been nominated for a second term by President Obama. Fist tap Dale.


umbrarchist said...

The trouble is the Laws of Physics are incapable of caring about the Fed or the Economics Profession.

Economists can't do Economics because it is a threat to their profession.  They would have to admit not doing algebra correctly for the last 50 years.  How would they explain ignoring the Depreciation of most of the world's cars for the last 50 years? 

What is the Yearly Demand Side Depreciation for the planet?

But then everything that has to be done to compensate for that gets added to GDP.  So ignoring depreciation increases economic growth.

CNu said...

The economists' primary function is as sophisticated propagandist in chief on behalf of the overlords