Saturday, January 24, 2009


Good grief, I wish my retirement plan offered gold:

Then, on Thursday, Obama's choice to lead the Treasury Department, Timothy Geithner, wrote that Obama believes China is "manipulating" its currency, which American manufacturers say Beijing does to make its goods cheaper for U.S. consumers and American products more expensive in China.

Um, guys? Just what the hell do you expect to accomplish with this? Sure, I like baiting communists as much as the next guy but what is the point of this criticism? It looks for all the world like you're readying us for some form of protectionism. Has the FDR nostalgia made you want to revisit the Smoot-Hawley Act? Couldn't you settle for Art Deco in the White House instead? Maybe dress Michelle up as a flapper?

See, I'm not a trained economist, I have to rely on the experts. But there's one thing that everyone who wasn't asleep, or stoned, in history class learned: protectionism is bad for everyone. I mean this is basic. As Paul Krugman once said, "If there were an Economist’s Creed, it would surely contain the affirmations 'I believe in the Principle of Comparative Advantage' and 'I believe in Free Trade'."

But don't listen to me. Don't listen to Krugman, listen to this:

"We thought in the face of the financial crisis, there would be a spirit of self-criticism beneficial to finding ways of resolving the issue and overcoming the crisis," Su said, adding that it was imperative to avoid any excuses to encourage trade protectionism.

That's right, a communist is schooling you on the basics of capitalism. And he's right.

The only thing that might explain this is that the IRS has decided to prosecute Geithner, and he is preparing an insanity defense.