Late Night GOP Stupidity Open Thread: Economic Easing (Out the Side Door)

Prospective Federal Reserve Board member Stephen Moore may be forced, nay compelled, to sacrifice his own career dreams for the sake of his deep loyalty to The Party. (Mostly because it looks like he can’t count on enough votes from his fellow Republicans to sail through his confirmation.) Per The Hill:

Stephen Moore, President Trump’s controversial pick for the Federal Reserve Board, said Wednesday that he is “totally committed” to seeing the process through, but would bow out if he became a political liability to Republicans.

In a Thursday interview with The Wall Street Journal, the conservative economist and commentator said he would stick with the vetting process for a formal nomination unless it could damage the GOP’s standing in the 2020 election.

“I’m totally committed to it as long as the White House is totally committed to it,” Moore told the Journal, ceding that he would drop out, “if something I said or something I’ve done becomes a political problem.”…

Trump floated Moore, an adviser to his 2016 presidential campaign, for a spot on the Fed board last month, but has not yet formally nominated him…

While Moore has been a figure in Washington conservative circles for decades, several Republican senators expressed concerns about his close ties to Trump, who has repeatedly and harshly criticized the Fed for almost a year.

Moore has also been fiercely critical of the Fed and reportedly won Trump’s blessing for an appointment with an opinion piece blasting the independent central bank.

Moore has also come under scrutiny for old columns he authored opposing the presence of women in sports or sportscasting, which he said Wednesday that he regretted…

Stephen Moore has built a long career in and around conservative politics by repeatedly advocating for the government to cut taxes. He is not great at it, but it is a quirk of that job that he doesn’t really have to be great at it, or even good at it. He just needs to do exactly what’s expected of him, always. Moore’s first foray into actual politics didn’t end well—he co-founded the Club For Growth in 1999 with the aim of electing Republicans who would pledge to cut taxes, but mismanaged the organization such that it was forced to pay a $350,000 fine to the Federal Election Commission in 2004. He was forced out that same year, and has spent most of his time doing his Libertarian Teddy Ruxpin duties in various sinecures ever since.

Donald Trump wants to appoint Moore to the Federal Reserve Board because he’s seen Moore on TV—he’s on TV a lot, generally being “wrong all the time, about pretty basic things,” in the words of the Washington Post’s Catherine Rampell—and because Moore has spent the entirety of Trump’s administration flattering Trump in impossibly goofy ways

On Monday, CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski revealed that Moore’s scouting report on the president was somehow not remotely his worst sports opinion. Kaczynski dove into Moore’s blogs from the National Review’s website in 2001, 2002, and 2003 and found posts asserting “that women should be banned from refereeing, announcing or beer vending at men’s college basketball games, [and] asking if there was any area in life ‘where men can take vacation from women.’”

Other columns discussed … well you know every hacky moan that has ever been registered by some replacement-level barnacle about hysterical women or nagging wives or creeping cultural fruitiness vis-a-vis sports? Moore did all those, too. He complained about women’s college basketball games being aired on ESPN in 2002. He complained about women playing alongside men in pickup games. He complained about women’s tennis players advocating for better pay. “If there is an injustice in tennis,” Moore wrote in 2000, “it’s that women like Martina Hingis and Monica Seles make millions of dollars a year, even though there are hundreds of men at the collegiate level (assuming their schools haven’t dropped the sport) who could beat them handily.” Moore complained about women broadcasting sports over and over again, but later allowed himself a saucy caveat—“Women are permitted to participate, if and only if, they look like Bonnie Bernstein. The fact that Bonnie knows nothing about basketball is entirely irrelevant.” In retrospect, Moore complained a lot!…

That all of the above is sexist matters, at least insofar as it tells you a little bit about what Stephen Moore is about. But it’s probably just as meaningful that all of it sucks—that it’s lame and dull and smug and so utterly, totally beat in every way, and that all of it is so spotlessly mediocre in the way it rephrases ancient stupidities so that they somehow feel even older and less interesting than they are. That tells you something about Stephen Moore, too, I guess, but it’s also nothing that wasn’t already obvious, and already something very much like his job.

Read the whole thing — purely for entertainment purposes, of course, because Dave Roth is infinitely more entertaining than ‘humorist’ Stephen Moore.

28 replies
  1. 1

    Low quality non-hires.

  2. 2
    Jay says:

    The US return to the Gold Standard should be epic.

  3. 3
    Dan B says:

    @Jay: Now it makes sense – moar gold! Much moar Gold!! The bestest America, shiny glittery standard gold!!! Ivanka golden like Goldfinger lady! That’s why Trumpf lurves him some Stephen Moore.

  4. 4
    Jay says:

    @Dan B:

    The Insane Clown POSus thinks the Gold Standard is a line of toilets, sinks and tubs.

  5. 5
    Keith P. says:

    @Jay: And is actually polished brass.

  6. 6

    I was so proud of myself. I got all packed early yesterday for my trip to Honduras today. I even made a list of things I’d need, and checked things off when I put them in the bags. Had everything sitting by the front door, so I could go to sleep early and be ready to walk out the door at 2:30 or 3:00 this morning. And I did. I woke up, everything was ready, I was all set to go, and I went out to wait for my ride. For once in my life, I felt like I had everything together. I was—dare I say it—organized.

    And I went out, and waited. And waited. And the ride didn’t come, and didn’t come, and I began to get worried that somehow I’d missed it, and after sending three text messages to my ride, and calling her twice and getting no answer, and thinking I’d have to wake my wife and ask her to take me…

    My ride wrote back to tell me that we leave tomorrow.

    This is life on A.D.D.

    But at least I’m packed.

  7. 7
    Elizabelle says:

    Paul Krugman opens the firehose on the deplorable Stephen Moore. With charts. NY Times: Survival of the Wrongest. K-Thug’s opening sentences are classic:

    Evidence has a well-known liberal bias. And that, presumably, is why conservatives prefer “experts” who not only consistently get things wrong, but refuse to admit or learn from their mistakes.

    There has been a lot of commentary about Stephen Moore, the man Donald Trump wants to put on the Fed’s Board of Governors. It turns out that he has a lot of personal baggage: He was held in contempt of court for failing to pay alimony and child support, and his past writings show an extraordinary degree of misogyny. He misstates facts so much that one newspaper editor vowed never to publish him again, and he has been caught outright lying about his past support for a gold standard. Oh, and he has described the cities of the U.S. heartland as “armpits of America.”

    … [Moore] was part of a fairly broad group that advocated tight money in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. This group bitterly criticized both the Fed’s low interest rates and its efforts to boost the economy by buying bonds, so-called “quantitative easing.” Its members warned that these policies would lead to runaway inflation …

    We now know what happened: The Fed was right and its hard-money critics were wrong. In fact, it’s hard to think of other events in economic history in which rival doctrines received such a clear test, and in which one of them emerged so decisively as the winner.

    [And Krugman brings on the charts. However, these creatures being denizens of Rightwing Looptopia:]

    But two funny things happened once the verdict of the evidence was in. First, aside from a vague mea culpa from Larry Kudlow, none – and I mean none – of the Fed’s critics were willing to admit that they were wrong. In 2014 Bloomberg contacted as many of the signatories of that open letter to Bernanke as it could, to ask what they thought given subdued inflation and a solid economic recovery. Not one was willing to admit that the letter’s warnings had proved incorrect.

    Second, the people who got it wrong were if anything rewarded for their errors. Moore was wrong about everything during the financial crisis; he remained a fixture on the right-wing conference circuit, and in 2014 the Heritage Foundation appointed him as its chief economist. Kudlow, who dismissed those warning about the housing bubble as “bubbleheads,” and warned about looming inflation in the depths of recession, also remained a right-wing favorite – and is now the Trump administration’s chief economist.

    We have to save ourselves from these idiots failing upwards. And being rewarded for it.

  8. 8
    Elizabelle says:

    @Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.):

    I am proud of you! And happy jet trails to Honduras. Tomorrow.

    We will have to do a meetup when you’re back. Maybe some time this summer or early fall.

  9. 9
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.): HA! Did she bitch at you for waking her up at 3 am?

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    Patricia Kayden says:

    Well, Trump promised us the best people. Who knew that he meant the best people at being sycophants and groveling? At this point, if you want to work for this administration, there’s something deeply wrong with you.

  13. 13
    Joey Maloney says:

    I only want it known that in my opinion, the only really outstanding Rush album was their very first, made before John Rutsey was replaced with Neil Peart. Good heavy headbanging rock’n’roll including the anthem Working Man. Fly By Night was really good, Caress Of Steel is underappreciated but with a couple of clunkers. 2112 is great musically but the Randsturbation is annoying.

    The first side of Farewell To Kings is probably the best work they ever did with Peart. After that they went into a period where it sounded like they each went into the studio individually and screwed around for 45 minutes and then put the tracks together and cut them up into songs at random places. And I haven’t listened to much they’ve done since.

    And that’th the truthththththththt.

  14. 14
    Elizabelle says:

    @Patricia Kayden: They’re having a hard time dating. They can’t find good jobs (because Trump on the resume says ridiculous lack of judgment).

    On the positive side, they have hacks like Maggie Haberman to help reburnish their soiled reputations. Behold Haberman’s recent knob polishing. Where and from who did this story emanate? Any guesses?

    WASHINGTON — In the months before Kirstjen Nielsen was forced to resign, she tried to focus the White House on one of her highest priorities as homeland security secretary: preparing for new and different Russian forms of interference in the 2020 election.

    President Trump’s chief of staff told her not to bring it up in front of the president.

    Ms. Nielsen left the Department of Homeland Security early this month after a tumultuous 16-month tenure and tensions with the White House. Officials said she had become increasingly concerned about Russia’s continued activity in the United States during and after the 2018 midterm elections — ranging from its search for new techniques to divide Americans using social media, to experiments by hackers, to rerouting internet traffic and infiltrating power grids.

    Her wanted to do the right thing, but her was told not to. Uh huh. Although I do love this nugget. Because Trump KNOWS he is an illegitimate president.

    But in a meeting this year, Mick Mulvaney, the White House chief of staff, made it clear that Mr. Trump still equated any public discussion of malign Russian election activity with questions about the legitimacy of his victory. According to one senior administration official, Mr. Mulvaney said it “wasn’t a great subject and should be kept below his level.”

    … This account of Ms. Nielsen’s frustrations was described to The New York Times by three senior Trump administration officials and one former senior administration official, all of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity. The White House did not provide comment after multiple requests on Tuesday.

    NY Times link.

  15. 15
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Everyone trump touches dies.

  16. 16
    Elizabelle says:

    Quite aside from investigating preparatory to impeachment, which I am all for, I hope and pray we have a lot of investigating as to whether Trump was ever legitimately elected in the first place. That question can ride along under the surface for a long time, if need be.

    And forget the fig leaf of the ridiculous Electoral College formally meeting. It was very, very potentially an illegitimate outcome, and one that should not have been accepted.

    And then get rid of all the dreadful judges they’ve skunked into place. De-Trumpification.

  17. 17
    Joey Maloney says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: If only that were literally true. RIP Ivanka.

  18. 18
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Joey Maloney: Well, their reputations anyway. Note, this does not apply to Ivanka. Can’t lose what you never had.

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    Searcher says:

    There sure are a lot of Steves in Trump’s orbit.

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    waspuppet says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Everyone Trump touches is 3/4 dead already.

    As for “just kneejerk opposition to *anyone* Trump would choose for the Fed,” I’m all good with that. This president, this administration, is illegitimate. Trump, like all domestic abusers, is counting on people wearing down and saying “Fck it, OK.” Not happening here.

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    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.): Life on ADD, indeed. At least your experience beats the living shit out of my SOP for foreign travel: Think you’re all packed a day ahead of time, then realize you’ve forgotten A, B, C, X, Y & Z & have no freakin’ clue where they are in your house; spend the last 24 hrs frantically digging through everything to find them, getting about 2 hrs of sleep in the end – & still can’t sleep on the flight over the Pwnd.

    NB I’m off to Prague Monday night, wish me luck.

  22. 22
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Jay: Fiat materials like that? Never! Back to the sea shell standard!

  23. 23
    cain says:

    @Joey Maloney:
    Meh. I do like the old age Rush. But clockwork angels is an amazing album. The last couple albums have been pretty good. And come on .. Neil is considered one of the best drummers in the world and has inspired generations of drummers.

  24. 24
    Dr. Ronnie James, D.O. says:

    @Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.): I hear you. 20 years ago, I concluded a 2 week trip to Thailand by taking a ferry from the island to the mainland, then a long bus ride to Bangkok, check into hotel. The details were so complex and the timing so tight, I actually mapped it out in paper. Wake up bright and early the next day, taxi to the airport, wait in check in line and… “Sir, this ticket is for tomorrow’s flight.” oh well, one more day in Bangkok, turned out to be one of the best days of the trip.

  25. 25
    mad citizen says:

    I know this thread is dying, but can’t help myself, want to go on record for the ages. It’s a well-trod thought. I’m an economist by training. I’ve seen Stephen Moore at various times on TV, mostly on Bill Maher. Not only is Moore hapless and unconvincing in the face of opposition, but he is absolutely one of the very dumbest persons I’ve ever seen inhabiting our media.

    There. I feel better.

  26. 26
    mad citizen says:

    @Joey Maloney: As a rock fan but not really a Rush fan, I love this summation. Saw them once around 1981/1982.

  27. 27
    Cathie from Canada says:

    Everything Trump Touches Dies #ETTD
    It seems we can never go wrong if we just assume right at the outset that anyone Trump admires, supports, endorses, etc is always going to be an absolute disaster. I think its just about the only thing we can rely on in his whole presidency.

  28. 28
    Mike G says:

    So Moore is on TV a lot validating Trump’s ignorance of economics with right wing propaganda that has zero predictive value. Just like Larry Kud-blow. Those seem to be the primary selection criteria now. We’re basically a banana republic ruled by a corrupt caudillo now.

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