Economics positions: who Obama should appoint and why

Here is a run-down from Brad DeLong.  In addition to the analyses of particular names (I generally agree in the cases I can judge, though I would reappoint Bernanke, if only to limit market uncertainty), get this:

Trade Czar-nominee-designate-leekee. This will, I think, turn out to be
a much more important job in the Obama-Biden administration than people
recognize. Trade agreements are a principal way that we deploy our
foreign policy soft power. And trade sanctions are, I think, going to
be a principal tool in the construction of the system of global
governance to fight global warming.

Comments

I think we should get rid of Bernake and leave it vacant.

There will be a below the surface battle in the Obama administration (below due to the financial fiasco) over trade policy, and Obama will be a tough spot, having promised to save the auto industry and American manufacturing in general (at least when he was in the rustbelt).

Further trade deals will destroy more manufacturing jobs, putting Obama in a tough spot. The interests of the coastal states are much different than the interests of the heartland states, and Michigan and Ohio went very blue.

Warren Buffett's not going to be interested in anything other than occasional BS sessions by phone.

so is geithner out of the running for treasury secretary? he seems to have fallen off the radar lately.

Is anyone going to care about global warming in the middle of a (likely severe) recession? Europe, where people care deeply about these things, is already backing slowly away. The U.S., even with a brand new administration and leftier congress, surely will put global warming on the back burner, right?

I suspect DeLong carefully constructed the phrase "the construction of the system of global governance to fight global warming" in order to maximally pique his opponents.

Volcker will be Treasury. The rest seem to be conventional picks.

plus la change plus la meme chose.

"Reappoint Bernanke" is poor phrasing, since his term doesn't coincide with those of cabinet members and administrations (Reagan famously inherited Volcker from Carter). Of course you and the article refer to the end of his term as chairman in 2010, but two years from now is infinitely far away in the present environment. By then, Bernanke will either be a hero or the second most hated man in America (after Obama, in this scenario). Making any sort of decision now is premature and absurd.

DeLong's suggestion that a replacement for Bernanke should be designated two years in advance is ridiculous. Even the next two months with a lame duck Treasury Secretary is creating a serious power vacuum and paralysis. What purpose could possibly be served by two years of having a lame duck Fed chairman?

And how will the designated replacer occupy his time for the next two years, under constant scrutiny? He'd be under constant pressure to publicly reveal whether he agrees with Bernanke's policies or not: if he publicly disagrees, he undermines everything Bernanke tries, which will be perceived as reversible; if he agrees, then he shares the blame if Bernanke fails and enters the office as damaged goods.

What was DeLong thinking in making this suggestion?

DeLong let's his ideology blind him in much the same way ideology blinds Krugman

Trade sanctions? Against the US of course!

Trade sanctions? Against the US of course!

I hear from very uninformed sources that the President-Elect is considering Rep. Ron Paul to be the next head of the Federal Reserve. I think Dr. Paul would probably be better as Sec Treasury, the chairmanship of the Federal Reserve would be a fine cap to his already stellar career.

@Barbar you might want to consider the insidious effects of the Tax Reform Act of 1986. That act was a death blow for the middle classes and the self employed.

You can buy and gain very cheap kamas from our country.

It seems we will be in economy resin for quite a long time. We can see the economy crisis effect everywhere.

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