Those indefatigable Trump defenders

Here’s an imaginary conversation, which will be completed in the comments section:

Me: Trump is obviously an ignorant buffoon.

Trumpistas: But look, he’s picking distinguished people for the Fed, such as Powell, Quarles and Clarida.

Me. That’s true.

One year later:

Me: Now Trump’s picking unqualified people for the Fed.

Trumpistas: It doesn’t matter if they are qualified, all that matters is whether they vote the right way.

Me: But these are super hawks who have praised the gold standard.

Trumpistias: Yes, but they are loyal to Trump, so while they were hawkish in the past, today they’ll do whatever it takes to help the President.

Me: But they are appointed for 14 years, and Trump’s term ends in less than 2 years. Will Trump want the Fed to help the next president? After all, he tried to get the Fed to hurt the previous (Democratic) president. Will these super hawks want a monetary policy that makes a socialist president look good in the eyes of the voters?

Trumpistas: TBD, in the comment section.



10 Responses to “Those indefatigable Trump defenders”

  1. Gravatar of Brian Donohue Brian Donohue
    18. April 2019 at 08:50

    Your point on the 14 year appointment is new, and good.

  2. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    18. April 2019 at 10:11


    when was the last time a real Trumpista commented here? What do you expect? I’m a contrarian regarding Trump and TDS, but I admit that I can’t come up with a good argument right now. Cain and Moore do look like “exotic” choices indeed.

    Maybe this: I was really surprised that Cain has quite some experience with the FED of Kansas. How did this happen?


    Your point on the 14 year appointment is new, and good.

    I’m not sure, if it’s that good. The last 20 something governors seem to have stayed between 2 and 8 years in reality. None of them stayed for the whole 14 years, for whatever reasons.

    Not to mention that Cain is 73 and had Stage IV cancer already, he will never stay 14 years. He isn’t even nominated yet, let alone appointed.

    And Moore served under Reagan and worked for Cato. Don’t you like Cato anymore, Scott? It’s Cato, yeah! =)

  3. Gravatar of Effem Effem
    18. April 2019 at 10:27

    Raise the inflation target at a time when wage share is near a record low and wages have struggled to keep up with inflation? Strikes me as a massively risky bet. Get it wrong and the voters rescind Fed independence. Game over.

  4. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    18. April 2019 at 14:47

    Christian, You said:

    “Maybe this: I was really surprised that Cain has quite some experience with the FED of Kansas.”

    So do the janitors at the Fed. The question is whether he has any experience on monetary policy. And the answer is no.

  5. Gravatar of E. Harding E. Harding
    18. April 2019 at 16:14

    The problem with the Trump Fed picks isn’t that they’re unqualified. The problem is that they’re hackish.

  6. Gravatar of dtoh dtoh
    19. April 2019 at 02:55

    Trumpistas: Maybe it’s more important to pick someone who can hit their targets than to pick someone who is distinguished.

    You: ?

    BTW – I’m not a Trumpista (whatever that is) but I’ll pretend to be one to make the conversation work.

  7. Gravatar of Cameron Blank Cameron Blank
    19. April 2019 at 07:08


    Yes, hard to understand why people don’t think Moore, who called for rate hikes in 2008, and Cain, who wanted to force the Fed to increase rates based on gold prices, and who now both think inflation is no big deal wouldn’t be able to hit fed targets.

  8. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    19. April 2019 at 09:13

    dtoh, That doesn’t in any way respond to my final point. That’s the point you were supposed to respond to. We all agree the Fed should hit its targets, but THESE GUYS DON”T FAVOR DOING SO. They wanted even tighter money in the early 2010s.

  9. Gravatar of dtoh dtoh
    19. April 2019 at 12:46

    Bernanke favored hitting the targets. Did he hit targets? No. He was the worst central banker in the history of the planet. It DOES NOT matter what they say. It only matters if they do the job effectively once they take office. Banking is a simple job… comparable to pushing a mop. Any dullard can do it. If you want to increase economic activity you lend more money (buy more assets.) That’s it.

    If one were to pick a Fed Governor based on the historical record of past Governors, then it would be simple….pick anyone except an academic or a government bureaucrat.

  10. Gravatar of George Selgin George Selgin
    21. April 2019 at 12:40

    “And Moore served under Reagan and worked for Cato. Don’t you like Cato anymore, Scott? It’s Cato, yeah! =)”

    Give us a break, Christian. Moore left Cato years ago, and never worked on monetary policy. Take a minute or two to consult what we’re actually up to here, and you might not find it so hard to understand why Scott likes us (most of the time!). Heck, you might even manage to like us a bit yourself.

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