Comments: Ron! Visits with Jim!

OK, I needed a reminder of why I can't listen to Cramer for more than 20 seconds, but I endured this because of Ron Paul.

Paul isn't talking about "oversight" in a perpetual sense, but an investigation -- an audit of the Federal Reserve. Why aren't Greenspan and Bernanke being held accountable for what they've done?

Actually, a gold standard is a necessity *when* you have a central bank. It is the only way to keep a central bank in line, especially when a Fed chairman was nominated on an apparently sound record but goes on to wreak havoc. In this wise, Bernanke and Greenspan are the Fed's equivalent of David Souter.

Posted by Perry Eidelbus at December 24, 2007 1:03 PM

I liked Cramer when he was paired with Kudlow. And I was intrigued by the originality of his new show (and his encyclopedic knowledge), but you are right, I really cannot hack him anymore.

Okay, we do a one time audit. Which of our 535 central bankers will you trust to say "this was the right interest rate at this time?" Rep Franks probably understands it, but I do not trust his motives. How many others do you think actually understand what the FOMC does? You're going to give them all a whack at Chairman Bernanke, I can't think of one whose opinion I would prefer to "Helicopter Ben's."

Posted by jk at December 24, 2007 3:52 PM

The audit wouldn't be done by Congress, but by independent experts in forensic accounting. The purpose of the audit has nothing to do with the Fed governors' choices of interest rates, but to gauge its performance, and to make sure every dollar is accounted for.

Posted by Perry Eidelbus at December 24, 2007 4:30 PM

You think Bernanke and Greenspan are guilty of malfeasance? Tucking extra 20's in their underpants like Sandy Berger?

It seems Cramer wants Greenspan put in the stocks for having rates too low and Bernanke in for keeping them too high and then setting them too low -- all at the wrong time.

You have three or four economists on Kudlow & Co. every night giving four different versions of "coulda, shoulda." And each is smatter and less conflicted than 90% of Congress.

Posted by jk at December 25, 2007 3:05 PM

You're still partially going by "oversight" and "audit" involving what interest rates should have been. That's not what I and other critics of the Fed are talking about. Embezzlement isn't the issue, but then again, no one should be assumed to be above reproach.

What we're talking about is things like the Fed's ability to create money by buying federal bonds: it creates new dollars and ships them to the U.S. Treasury in exchange for U.S. Treasury bills. This is one way that the FOMC controls (meaning "expands") the money supply. Are we simply going to trust that the Fed is sending everything over, especially in these days of electronic records?

And you realize, of course, that we pay interest to all holders of U.S. Treasury securities. The Fed is an arm of the federal government but yet keeps itself financially separate. Why the hell should our taxes pay an entity to reduce the value of our money?

Posted by Perry Eidelbus at December 26, 2007 3:59 PM