Chris Edwards

Bernanke’s Fallacious Fiscal Facts

In a speech on Friday, outgoing Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke defended his record of extraordinary policy interventions. One of his framing techniques is to claim that extreme monetary efforts were needed in the last few years—from his Keynesian perspective—to offset “contractionary” fiscal policy.

Dean’s Dilemma: Capitalism or Welfare for Senator Heller?

Republican Senator Dean Heller of Nevada has co-sponsored a bill to revive the emergency unemployment insurance program. Senator Harry Reid is pleased as punch that Heller is breaking with the “tea party folks” on the issue.

Bernanke’s View of Fiscal Policy

Federal Reserve chairmen are famous for their opaque but sophisticated-sounding comments designed to make it appear that they know more about the shape of the economy than they really do. But outgoing chairman Ben Bernanke’s direct and transparent assertions yesterday about fiscal policy also left me scratching my head.

Low Job Satisfaction in the Federal Bureaucracy

Other than providing generous pay and fat pensions, many federal agencies are not great places to work, according to federal employees themselves on a new survey.

Even More on Ryan-Murray Budget Deal

In the Wall Street Journal, Peggy Noonan calls the Ryan-Murray budget deal a “step in the right direction,” which echoes a claim by Rep. Paul Ryan. She says the deal “goes in the right general direction, not the wrong one.” But how could a deal composed of spending and revenue increases possibly be the right direction when the government is already far too large?

More on the Ryan-Murray Budget Deal

The Ryan-Murray budget deal is remarkably bad when you look at the details. If the Republican Party is supposed to be the fiscally conservative party, there is virtually nothing Republican in the agreement. The Democrats could have written the whole thing themselves. It raises spending and taxes, and reduces the deficit only in a jury-rigged scorekeeping kind of a way that won’t actually be realized.

Federal Sugar Program and Chicago Jobs

The Washington Post has great reporters, but there may be room for improvement in sharing research and reviewing past stories by colleagues.An article on Sunday discussed how candy factories “had laid off thousands of workers” in a Chicago neighborhood where a new Wal-Mart has located:

The Budget Deal Is a Huge Republican Cave-In

Republicans in Congress have put in a dismal fiscal performance in 2013. The party could not come together to defund the disastrous Obamacare law. No progress was made tackling entitlements or eliminating programs. Republicans joined with Democrats to move ahead the wasteful farm bill. And the year began with a large income tax increase.

Minimum Wage and Unemployment

I was surprised to read this assertion about the minimum wage by labor analyst Harry Holzer in the Washington Post today:

GOP Poised to Win Charlie Brown Award

Republican negotiators are poised to win the prestigious Charlie Brown Award for Fiscal Policy sponsored by my colleague Dan Mitchell. With their 2011 Budget Control Act bearing fruit and providing some spending control the last two years, Republicans are gearing up to throw it away in return for fee increases and paltry spending trims.

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