In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 25, 2008 / 22 Sivan 5768

Next president has big task of repairing monetary policy

By Robert Robb

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The influence the next president may have on appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court and thus the judicial policy of the country is well known and widely discussed. It is likely to be a big issue in the election.

That the next president may have an equally large opportunity to influence the monetary policy of the country, however, has gone virtually unnoticed. There are currently two vacancies on the seven-member Federal Reserve Board of Governors. Another member is continuing to serve, as permitted under the law, even though Congress has not reconfirmed him. Another vacancy will occur this summer. And Ben Bernanke's term as chairman ends in 2010.

The Democratic Congress is sitting on President Bush's Fed nominees. If it continues to do so, the next president may have the chance to nominate a majority of the board. Regardless, the next president will get to nominate the chairman of the Fed, who historically has been a dominant leader on monetary policy.

This opportunity occurs when the Fed has been doing a lousy job and represents a threat to the American economy.

The primary job of the Fed is to maintain a stable currency. At this, it has failed miserably.

The value of the dollar compared to the euro, whose central bank has behaved more sensibly and steadily during these economically turbulent times, has dropped over 50 percent since 2000. It has dropped 28 percent just since Bernanke's appointment in February, 2006.

About a third of the price of crude oil imports can be attributed to the depreciation of the dollar.

Inflation is running north of 4 percent and rising. The Fed says, not to worry. Core inflation, excluding energy and food, is lower.

The rationale for excluding energy and food in setting monetary policy is that their prices are volatile. And when they are, indeed, volatile - both rising and falling - that's a sensible approach. When they are consistently rising, however, excluding them simply understates the problem.

The Fed has neglected price stability to try to cushion the economic fallout from the housing bubble bursting. However, even here, its actions are deeply troubling. The longer the perspective, and the more that is known, the worse the Bear Sterns bailout seems.

The Fed, in cahoots with Bush's Treasury Department, forced the sale of Bear Sterns rather than allowing it to go bankrupt. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson even dictated the terms of the sale to J.P. Morgan Chase. The Fed facilitated the sale by assuming $29 billion of Bear Sterns' questionable securities. The Fed also opened its credit window to other investment banks.

Former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, who tamed inflation in the 1980s, said that the Fed had gone to "the very edge of its lawful and implied powers, transcending certain long embedded central bank principles and practices." Historically, the Fed had limited its lending to banks whose deposits are federally insured. Now, no one knows who the Fed is willing to lend to or under what circumstances.

Bailing out Bear Sterns and opening the credit window to investment banks were supposedly necessary to prevent a total collapse of the U.S. financial system. If the failure of a mid-sized investment bank can have that sort of consequence, then there is entirely too much risk and opacity in the system.

More regulation can only do so much to rein in excessive risk-taking and opacity. The system is just too big, and regulations too easy to skate in the world of international finance, for a cop-approach to work.

The only thing that will work is to make it clear that failure will be permitted.

The next president needs to go to Wall Street and say, you're on your own. No bailouts on my watch.

Then the president needs to appoint a critic of the Bear Sterns rescue to replace Bernanke in 2010, to make clear that what the Fed imprudently opened has been closed. And appoint inflation hawks to the Board to the extent he has the opportunity.

Ordinarily, it is good if politicians ignore the Fed. The instincts of politicians regarding monetary policy are almost uniformly bad. That's why central banks need to have independence.

These, however, aren't ordinary times. Unfortunately, neither John McCain nor Barack Obama seems aware of either the opportunity or the need, or up to the task.

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JWR contributor Robert Robb is a columnist for The Arizona Republic. Comment by clicking here.

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