Dear Ma,

Hey, thanks for the cookies, terrific as usual! Sorry I haven’t called but I’ve been slammed.

But, Ma, you’ve got to stop talking about me behind my back to Sis and Bro. You think I don’t hear about this stuff, but I do (I have spies everywhere!) Here’s your latest, and I mean it’s almost word-for-word:

Ma: Poor Ben, he’s got himself painted into the Mother of All Corners.

Sis: How so, Ma? Everybody says Ben’s a genius, including Ben.

Ma: Don’t believe everything you read in the papers, honey. Ben thinks he saved the world back in ’08, so now he thinks he can do anything.

Bro: He always was a know-it-all, growing up.

Ma: Ben’s latest is he decided to roll the dice on the “wealth effect.” The kid could have known the wealth effect’s a crock just by going to, but he didn’t. So he plowed all this dough into the economy, goosing the stock market. He figured folks would feel richer and spend more and the economy’d improve.

Bro: Come on, Ma, a lot of people think that.

Ma: Yeah, but they’re all economists. So when the wealth effect didn’t work, Ben knew he had to start getting all that money out of the system. But when he even mentioned it, the markets crashed. So, now, if he keeps printing money the country goes broke, and if he stops printing money the markets crash. People will feel poorer, won’t spend, and we’ll all be back into recession. Ben’s got himself hoist on the Mother of All Petards.

Sis: You know, Ma, you gotta stop with those Islamacist sayings. You’re turning into the Mother of All Exaggerated Similes.

Ma: Mark my words.

You see, Ma, I know what’s going on, so you need to stop. Besides, you’re wrong. My exit plan’s intact. It’s August now, and hot as hell in DC, but my term as Fed Chair’s up in February, which is only six months. Between now and then I’m going to trot out a Fed Governor every few weeks to assure everybody I’m gonna keep going with the QE. The markets’ll keep going up and when I step down they’ll throw me the Mother of All Goodbye Parties. I’ll leave office on a wave of such adoration as Mother Teresa could only dream about, you watch and see.

Sure, the US economy’s got itself painted into the Mother of All Corners, but that’s a whole different enchilada. In February, I’ll turn that mess over to my successor. (You know Janet, Ma, you met her at that party down on K Street. She’s the gray-haired lady who drank too much and kept shouting, “Tax and spend! Tax and spend!”)

Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know what you’re thinking: it’s only a matter of time before folks start looking back at my tenure with jaundiced eyes. It happened with that fellow Greenspan, you know. He was the toast of the town for years, and then, suddenly, he was just toast. But, Ma, I’ve got that covered. While everybody’s still fooled I’ll grab some fat sinecure – say, president of Harvard – and after that they can kvetch all they want.

So you see, Ma, you’ve got it all wrong. It’s bad enough I have to listen to all those morons in the blogosphere carping about everything I do, but having my own family tittering behind my back is just too much, so please knock it off. And send more cookies.

Your loving son,



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