Saturday, September 15, 2007

 

"Libertarian-Republican" Guru Alan Greenspan Comes Clean - NOW He Tells Us!!

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...and, of course, he's telling those of us who were paying attention all along something we already knew - in spades. Too bad those other "Libertarian-Republicans" had (have) such a short attention span. And a disregard for reality.

Beware of anyone, like Alan, who thinks Ayn Rand's crap was just swell. Sorry Mr. Gekko, but greed is NOT good. Repukians, if nothing else (and there's plenty else), are indeed the GOP - the Greed Old Party.

This illegal, despicable, war-mongering, oil-lusting Administration of Cockroach Assholes has, and will, cost real Americans dearly. Greenspan's enabling posture didn't help. He, like the rest of the Repugnants, was not there for America when we needed him... --DN

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FROM amazon.com:

The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World (Hardcover)
by Alan Greenspan (Author)
List Price: $35.00
Price: $23.10 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25.

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FROM the Wall St. Journal:

In a withering critique of his fellow Republicans, former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan says in his memoir that the party to which he has belonged all his life deserved to lose power last year for forsaking its small-government principles.

In "The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World," published by Penguin Press, Mr. Greenspan criticizes both congressional Republicans and President George W. Bush for abandoning fiscal discipline.

The book is scheduled for public release Monday. The Wall Street Journal bought a copy at a bookstore in the New York area.

Mr. Greenspan, who calls himself a "lifelong libertarian Republican," writes that he advised the White House to veto some bills to curb "out-of-control" spending while the Republicans controlled Congress. He says President Bush's failure to do so "was a major mistake." Republicans in Congress, he writes, "swapped principle for power. They ended up with neither. They deserved to lose."

Read the rest at wsj.com...

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FROM time-blog.com

The Greenspan Book

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan is the latest into the bookstores with a revealing book that takes a sharp look at the Bush Administration. In the Washington Post, Bob Woodward (himself the author of a book about Greenspan), cites this criticism by The Maestro:

"My biggest frustration remained the president's unwillingness to wield his veto against out-of-control spending," Greenspan writes. "Not exercising the veto power became a hallmark of the Bush presidency. . . . To my mind, Bush's collaborate-don't-confront approach was a major mistake."
On the other hand, Greenspan gives high praise to former President Clinton, whom he says had an extraordinary interest in and grasp of economic data.

However, it is worth remembering the central role that Greenspan played in enabling the Bush economic program to happen. In the first days after the 2001 inauguration, Greenspan warned of a danger that the budget surplus (remember the surplus?) could actually become too big and drag down the economy. And thus, Greenspan gave the green light to Bush's tax cuts.

In his book, the NY Times says, Greenspan acknowledges that he was cautioned not to make such an endorsement, by none other than Robert Rubin, the head of that Clinton economic team that he regarded so highly:

Though Mr. Greenspan does not admit he made a mistake, he shows remorse about how Republicans jumped on his endorsement of the 2001 tax cuts to push through unconditional cuts without any safeguards against surprises. He recounts how Mr. Rubin and Senator Kent Conrad, Democrat of North Dakota, begged him to hold off on an endorsement because of how it would be perceived.

“It turned out that Conrad and Rubin were right,” he acknowledges glumly. He says Republican leaders in Congress made a grievous error in spending whatever it took to ensure a permanent Republican majority.

But Greenspan presided over the Fed for another five years. So it seems fair to ask: Why did he wait until he had an $8.5-million book deal to tell us this?

Read more at time-blog/swampland...

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FROM The Carpetbagger Report:

Alan Greenspan has a few things he’d like to get off his chest.

Alan Greenspan, who served as Federal Reserve chairman for 18 years and was the leading Republican economist for the past three decades, levels unusually harsh criticism at President Bush and the Republican Party in his new book, arguing that Bush abandoned the central conservative principle of fiscal restraint.

While condemning Democrats, too, for rampant federal spending, he offers Bill Clinton an exemption. The former president emerges as the political hero of “The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World,” Greenspan’s 531-page memoir, which is being published Monday.

[…]

By all indications, Greenspan doesn’t hold back. He served under six presidents, and thought the least of George W. Bush. “Little value was placed on rigorous economic policy debate or the weighing of long-term consequences,” he wrote.

[...]

Mark Kleiman remembers the truth.

Yes, this is the same Alan Greenspan who enabled Bush’s tax cuts with one of the most intellectually dishonest performances ever seen on Capitol Hill. (Yes, I know that’s saying a lot.) Greenspan, if you’ll recall, testified that the tax cuts were A Good Thing because otherwise there was the risk that the federal government would pay off all its debt and have to find a place to invest its spare money. That would then generate the further risk that the government, by owning equities, would wield undue influence over the economy. (No, dammit, I am not making this up!)

Read it all at The Carpetbagger Report...

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FROM Slate:

Greenspan's book, The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World is a modern center-left pundit's dream come true (the title, not so much). He wishes he'd never endorsed Bush's tax cuts, complaining his words were used to justify a reckless, politically motivated spending binge. Republicans "swapped principle for power. They ended up with neither. They deserved to lose" in 2006. The WP says he and Bill Clinton come off "almost as soul mates." Indeed, "The hard truth was that Reagan had borrowed from Clinton, and Clinton was having to pay it back."

Read more at Slate...

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FROM washingtonpost.com:

Greenspan Is Critical Of Bush in Memoir


Former Fed Chairman Has Praise for Clinton

Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, September 15, 2007; Page A01

Alan Greenspan, who served as Federal Reserve chairman for 18 years and was the leading Republican economist for the past three decades, levels unusually harsh criticism at President Bush and the Republican Party in his new book, arguing that Bush abandoned the central conservative principle of fiscal restraint.

While condemning Democrats, too, for rampant federal spending, he offers Bill Clinton an exemption. The former president emerges as the political hero of "The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World," Greenspan's 531-page memoir, which is being published Monday.

[...]

Greenspan, who had an eight-year alliance with Clinton and Democratic Treasury secretaries in the 1990s, praises Clinton's mind and his tough anti-deficit policies, calling the former president's 1993 economic plan "an act of political courage."

But he expresses deep disappointment with Bush. "My biggest frustration remained the president's unwillingness to wield his veto against out-of-control spending," Greenspan writes. "Not exercising the veto power became a hallmark of the Bush presidency. . . . To my mind, Bush's collaborate-don't-confront approach was a major mistake."

[...]

He singles out J. Dennis Hastert, the Illinois Republican who was House speaker until January, and Tom DeLay, the Texan who was majority leader until he resigned after being indicted for violating campaign finance laws in his home state.

"House Speaker Hastert and House majority leader Tom DeLay seemed readily inclined to loosen the federal purse strings any time it might help add a few more seats to the Republican majority," he writes.

[...]

Greenspan, 81, indirectly criticizes his friend and colleague from the Ford administration, Vice President Cheney. Former Bush Treasury Secretary Paul H. O'Neill has quoted Cheney as once saying, "Reagan proved deficits don't matter."

Greenspan says, " 'Deficits don't matter,' to my chagrin became part of the Republicans' rhetoric."

He argues that "deficits must matter" and that uncontrolled government spending and borrowing can produce high inflation "and economic devastation."

When Bush and Cheney won the 2000 election, Greenspan writes, "I thought we had a golden opportunity to advance the ideals of effective, fiscally conservative government and free markets. . . . I was soon to see my old friends veer off to unexpected directions."

[...]

By the end of last year, Greenspan writes with some bitterness, Washington was "harboring a dysfunctional government. . . . Governance has become dangerously dysfunctional."

However, he calls Clinton a "risk taker" who had shown a "preference for dealing in facts," and presents Clinton and himself almost as soul mates. "Here was a fellow information hound. . . . We both read books and were curious and thoughtful about the world. . . . I never ceased to be surprised by his fascination with economic detail: the effect of Canadian lumber on housing prices and inflation. . . . He had an eye for the big picture too."

Read all of this critique here...

I can't wait for Krugman's take on this, although he's had plenty to say about Greenspan over the years... --DN ---for instance:

http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2005/08/krugman_pops_gr.html
http://angrybear.blogspot.com/2004/03/krugman-on-greenspans-remarks-in.html
http://www.pkarchive.org/column/030504.html
http://www.truthout.org/docs_05/012605C.shtml

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