The ex-chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke told USA Today that more corporate executives should have gone to jail for their role in the fnancial panic of 2008–09. “It would have been my preference to have more investigation [by the Justice Department and other law enforcement agencies] of individual action, since obviously everything that went wrong or was illegal was done by some individual, not by an abstract frm.”
If we’re going to be handing out go-to-jail cards for culpability for the disaster of 2008–09, then one of the frst should go to Bernanke himself. His policies at the Fed and those of his predecessor were the primary reason for the debacle. Worse, what Bernanke did in the aftermath of the panic is the crucial reason that the U.S. and global economies are in such sorry shape today. For that he deserves a stif sentence, with no prospect of parole!
In the early 2000s the Federal Reserve, in cahoots with the U.S. Treasury Department, undertook a policy to deliberately and gradually weaken the dollar. The purpose was twofold: to help “stimulate” recovery from the 2000–01 recession and to boost exports, the theory being that a cheap greenback would mean lower prices for the overseas buyers of our products and services.
Bernanke, who joined the Federal Reserve Board in