Tuesday, July 20, 2010

On the Incoming New York Fed Chairman

Lee Bollinger will become the New York Fed chairman in 2012, the Federal Reserve has announced. Since he has no background in finance or economics, other than his membership on the NY Fed Board, he is just the way Ben Bernanke likes them, tall and clueless (and I'm not sure he is tall). He is a lawyer and an educator, two professions that probably are more responsible for the decline of this country than any others.

Even worse, he is, in general, a Big Time interventionist as witnessed by his July 14 op-ed, which appeared in WSJ and was titled, Journalism Needs Government Help. Yup, you got it. He writes:
The institutions of the press we have inherited are the result of a mixed system of public and private cooperation. Trusting the market alone to provide all the news coverage we need would mean venturing into the unknown—a risky proposition with a vital public institution hanging in the balance.
Most absurd, even though he is President of Columbia University, he writes:
There are examples of other institutions in the U.S. where state support does not translate into official control. The most compelling are our public universities and our federal programs for dispensing billions of dollars annually for research. Those of us in public and private research universities care every bit as much about academic freedom as journalists care about a free press.
This guy is so entrenched in the system, he has no clue as to how much influence the government has over education. I would like to see Bollinger explain why, with the supposed health crisis, the number of medical schools are so limited. I'd like for him to explain why herbal medical treatments are not taught at any major American universities. I'd like him to explain why despite the fact that Austrian economists more than any other group warned about the present economic train wreck, it is nearly impossible for them to get teaching positions at any of the top universities. I would like him to explain why almost any MBA graduate in the U.S. will know of John Maynard Keynes, but hardly any have heard of the Austrian School of economics. And, by the way, as president of Columbia, I would like to know if the university still reports to the government the racial breakdown of its student body.

Oh yeah, no government influence at colleges and universities, just keep moving along.

Perhaps Bollinger doesn't you realize that the person that writes the checks, always has the influence because he decides who gets the checks. On the free market, checks come from all types of sources, not just one source, and for all different kinds of projects.

It's not about setting up "independent" committees, to decide how to dish out taxpayer money. It's about who picks the committees, and inevitably it is about government and politics, with real independence blocked out.

The idea of propping up newspapers is the act of the desperate elite. Under the newspaper system it was easy for government to influence the major papers. Now with the internet, there are a thousand of eyes and ears reporting. Government can't control the flood of reporters. Internet readers are doing fine without the mainstream propaganda. It's the elite that have a problem and as per usual they want to solve their problem by limiting everyone's freedom and by using taxpayer money in the process to prop up the failing structure of the elite.


  1. Bollinger was the affirmative action guy at Michigan:

    "In 2003, Bollinger made headlines as defendant in the Supreme Court cases Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger. In the Grutter case, the Court found by a 5-4 margin that the affirmative action policies of the University of Michigan Law School were constitutional. But at the same time, they found by a 6-3 margin in the Gratz case that the undergraduate admissions policies of Michigan were not narrowly tailored to a compelling interest in diversity, and thus that they violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

    In 2006, affirmative action in university admissions in the state of Michigan was banned by a ballot initiative known as the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative."



    Ward Connerly's Michigan Civil Rights Initiative passed in 2006 58% to 42% while Democrat Jennifer Granholm won reelection by a similar margin over a neutered GOP candidate.

    And I was thinking that Bollinger's "subsidies for the press" article would be the end of his public career and he would be ashamed to show his face.

  2. government has always had a big influence on the press: media revenues get a big slice of government advertising. At least the compliant ones.