Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke appeared before the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday and he faced the arch rival to him and the Federal Reserve in a final showdown. Texas Congressman and GOP presidential contender Ron Paul, author of the book End the Fed, held nothing back, though in some parts it was short of what Bob Adelmann at The New American called for, yet Paul did take the opportunity to grill Bernanke one last time before he retires.
The GOP candidate scolded Bernanke for being "secretive" and while at the same time claiming the financial crisis is "far from over." While the conversation was rather one-sided, Paul was able to make his points.
Ron Paul made his points heard. He first criticized the Fed for equivocating independence with secrecy, noting that about $15 trillion had been used for overseas bailouts during the crisis, via currency swaps, which the Congress could not monitor.
Ron Paul then noted that when Bernanke claims the Fed stands ready to support Europe and other geographies during times of financial and economic crisis, it’s actually the American tax payer that is shouldering the burden. The Fed Chairman responded by noting that it is Congress which delegated the responsibility to manage monetary policy to the Federal Reserve.
While the Fed Chairman tried to avoid engaging Ron Paul, he did show his ideological bent when he told Ron Paul that while Congress could eliminate the statue the makes the Fed an independent body, it would result in a more inefficient central bank and ultimately a worse outcome.
He warned, and his warnings have been proven to become reality throughout the years, that the financial crisis is in the early stages. "It's far from over," he said.
Paul also said that the fault is not directly that of the chairman of the Federal Reserve but the Fed's policies. He said the answer to spending and debt is always print more money and the Fed purchase more debt. "Trillions and trillions of dollars (are) being printed out of thin air," said Paul.
Ron Paul has only advocated true fiscal responsibility and Constitutional sound money. While many people, including conservatives, don't want to talk about returning to a gold standard, they need to understand that is the only monetary policy the Constitution legally recognizes. They also need to understand that Congress is the only body that has the power to coin money Constitutionally and that the states can only accept payment in gold or silver coin Constitutionally. If we are to continue under the Constitution we should get back to sound monetary policy provided for us in our governing document. Otherwise, it needs to be changed to reflect the waywardness of the system that we have embraced.
We should be grateful to Ron Paul for bringing the issue of the Federal Reserve to the forefront in the GOP debates, even though the current presumptive nominee will not take that issue up.
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