Why Greenspan Won’t Shut Up

Welcome, Caroline Baum, to the please-Mr-Greenspan-shut-up society.

There is something unseemly about Greenspan’s conduct. Former presidents don’t criticize U.S. foreign policy during times of war, Jimmy Carter notwithstanding. The same unspoken rule should apply to economic policy…

So here’s my advice, Mr. Greenspan. Give speeches for $150,000 a pop and share your wisdom with your key clients, who must pay you handsomely.

When the press calls, just say "no comment." This is an acquired skill, but I’m sure you’ll catch on.

Why won’t Greenspan take Baum’s advice? Because he’s still playing defence, trying to justify his actions as central bank governor. Baum isn’t just telling Greenspan to shut up, she’s also saying things like this:

There’s enough blame to go around for what started as the subprime crisis, but surely Greenspan, the country’s chief economic policy maker for 18 years, must shoulder the lion’s share.

Greenspan, a feisty soul, wants nothing more, on reading such words, than to fight back. But Baum is right: he shouldn’t.

(HT: Newton)

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