90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Sizing Up Ben Bernanke

The economy’s getting traction. How’s the Fed chief done? How’s he doing?

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012, before the House Budget Committee.  (AP)

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012, before the House Budget Committee. (AP)

Everybody’s hoping the economy’s coming back.  Nobody knows for sure.  And the biggest foot on the pedals is the foot of Ben Bernanke.  The Federal Reserve Chairman with the trim beard and long view has been at the very heart of the economic crisis and the effort to claw back.

The fact that we’re not in a Great Depression right now owes no small debt to him.  But the Left rages that he hasn’t done enough.  The Right rages that he’s hell-bent on inflation.  Ron Paul wants to pull the Fed’s plug.  Rick Perry said don’t come down to Texas.

This hour, On Point:  the American economy and Ben Bernanke.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Roger Lowenstein, a financial journalist, his latest cover story on Ben Bernanke in the Atlantic magazine is here.

Charles Calomiris, a professor of financial institutions at Columbia University Business School.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Atlantic “Over the past four and a half years, Bernanke, 58, has presided over the most sustained period of crisis of any civilian official in recent history, with the fate of millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans hanging in the balance.”

ABC News “Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke sat down with ABC News’ Diane Sawyer Tuesday to discuss the state of the U.S. economy and the challenges we still face on the road to recovery. Bernanke and Sawyer spoke on a wide range of issues including gas prices, the housing market and where the national unemployment rate is heading. ”

Time “Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said Tuesday that U.S. government intervention during the financial crisis prevented a “total meltdown” in the U.S. economy that could have rivaled the Great Depression.”

  • You can find a time-line of the recent recession here.
Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Sep 19, 2014
No campaigners celebrate as results come in at the Scottish independence referendum count at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh,Scotland,Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. Scottish voters have rejected independence and decided that Scotland will remain part of the United Kingdom. The result announced early Friday was the one favored by Britain's political leaders, who had campaigned hard in recent weeks to convince Scottish voters to stay. It dashed many Scots' hopes of breaking free and building their own nation. (AP Photo/David Cheskin)

ISIS and arming Syrian fighters. Scotland rejects independence. NFL turmoil. US troops and Ebola. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Sep 19, 2014
Joseph O'Neill (courtesy of the author)

Author of “Netherland,” novelist Joseph O’Neill is back, with “The Dog,” on globalization, capitalism, and self-discovery in Dubai.

RECENT
SHOWS
Sep 19, 2014
Joseph O'Neill (courtesy of the author)

Author of “Netherland,” novelist Joseph O’Neill is back, with “The Dog,” on globalization, capitalism, and self-discovery in Dubai.

 
Sep 19, 2014
No campaigners celebrate as results come in at the Scottish independence referendum count at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh,Scotland,Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. Scottish voters have rejected independence and decided that Scotland will remain part of the United Kingdom. The result announced early Friday was the one favored by Britain's political leaders, who had campaigned hard in recent weeks to convince Scottish voters to stay. It dashed many Scots' hopes of breaking free and building their own nation. (AP Photo/David Cheskin)

ISIS and arming Syrian fighters. Scotland rejects independence. NFL turmoil. US troops and Ebola. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: September 19, 2014
Friday, Sep 19, 2014

Lots of big, contentious topics on the show this week — from Zionism to early education, corporal punishment to development in the Grand Canyon.

More »
Comment
 
Talking Through The Issue Of Corporal Punishment For Kids
Wednesday, Sep 17, 2014

On Point dove into the debate over corporal punishment on Wednesday — as Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson faces charges in Texas after he allegedly hit his four-year-old son with a switch.

More »
2 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: September 12, 2014
Friday, Sep 12, 2014

In which you had varied reactions to the prospect of a robotic spouse.

More »
Comment