Chairman Bernanke Explains It All
Posted on Jul 26, 2009
On Sunday, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke met the media, or at least PBS “NewsHour” anchor Jim Lehrer, along with some concerned citizens of Kansas City, Mo., to discuss how the Fed has dealt with the ongoing economic catastrophe over the past few months.
The Wall Street Journal:
Speaking directly to Americans in a forum to be shown on public television this week, Mr. Bernanke pushed back against Kansas City area residents who suggested he and other government officials were too eager to help big financial institutions before small businesses and common Americans.
“Why don’t we just let the behemoths lay down and then make room for the small businesses?” asked Janelle Sjue, who identified herself as a Kansas City mother.
“It wasn’t to help the big firms that we intervened,” Mr. Bernanke said, diving into a discourse on the damage to the overall economy that can result when financial firms that are “too big to fail” collapse.
“When the elephant falls down, all the grass gets crushed as well,” Mr. Bernanke said. He described himself as “disgusted” with the circumstances that led him to rescue a couple of large firms, and called for new laws that would allow financial firms other than banks to fail without going into bankruptcy.
Chairman Bernanke will now take your questions: Fed chief Ben Bernanke, left, with PBS anchor Jim Lehrer, listens to a query from an audience member.