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
May 29, 2015
Residents are evacuated by members of the Houston Fire Department from floodwaters surrounding their homes in Houston, Tuesday, May 26, 2015. Heavy rain overnight caused flooding and closure of sections of highways in the Houston area. (AP)

Texas floods. Soccer scandal. Nebraska outlaws the death penalty. Identity theft at the IRS. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

May 29, 2015
In this March 24, 2002 file photo, John Nash, left, and his wife Alicia, arrive at the 74th annual Academy Awards, in Los Angeles. Nash, the Nobel Prize-winning mathematician whose struggle with schizophrenia was chronicled in the 2001 movie "A Beautiful Mind,” died in a car crash along with his wife in New Jersey on Saturday, May 23, 2015, police said. (AP)

Remembering a beautiful mind: Nobel –prize winning game theorist John Nash . We’ll look at his game theory. His schizophrenia. His genius.

RECENT
SHOWS
May 28, 2015
Ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi raises his hands as he sits behind glass in a courtroom, in a converted lecture hall in the national police academy in an eastern Cairo suburb, Egypt, Saturday, May 16, 2015. (AP)

Sentenced to death in Egypt for espionage, respected academic Emad Shahin joins us with a big take on Egypt, ISIS and America’s response.

 
May 28, 2015
Protesters congregate in front of city hall Tuesday, May 26, 2015, in Cleveland. Members of about 40 churches are protesting the acquittal of a white patrolman charged in the deaths of two unarmed black motorists with a march through downtown Cleveland. (AP)

The new Cleveland standard of American policing. Will it stop abuse? Will it get the job done?

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
A Former Bike Gang Member Explains "The Life"
Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Larry called in from Lawrenceburg, KY and told us he was once a member of the Pagan’s Motorcycle Club, a mid-Atlantic biker gang. He didn’t sugar coat the facts as he explained the draw of the brotherhood and what makes the outlaw motorcycle corner the underworld go round.

More »
1 Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: May 15, 2015
Friday, May 15, 2015

We cancel a few hours and suddenly all of you get convinced of a global radio conspiracy! Plus, dragon zoos.

More »
1 Comment
 
Caller: ‘It Doesn’t Always Turn Out Okay’
Wednesday, May 13, 2015

One caller shares her own story of an extremely premature birth. Her daughter, born at 22 1/2 weeks in 2012, was taken off life support after seven days.

More »
Comment