Herman Cain has been generating a lot of buzz in conservative circles lately. He's "enthusiastic," "positive," and "inspiring" we're told. But none of these things have anything to do with the Constitutional duties of the president.
So, what do we actually know about the supposed "Godfather of Common Sense," Herman Cain? And what does it tell us about his governing philosophy?
Herman Cain is the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza and the host of a Georgia radio show. He's never been elected to public office, but ran for president in 2000, and again for U.S. Senate in Georgia in 2004. Cain also once donated money to former Sen. Bob Kerrey (D-NE).
We also know that Herman Cain is a former chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, who backed the Wall Street bailout in 2008 (which he called the "recovery plan"), advocated nationalizing the banks, slammed opponents of these programs (the majority of Americans) as "free market purists," and agitated against an audit of the Federal Reserve. Which reminds me of a great post title I recently read.
'Does anyone remember when people in this country used to mock Soviet central planning?' Well, central economic planning is what we have with the Federal Reserve.
Because of the Fed’s official policy to erode the value of our money, combined with its policy of holding interest rates to near zero, we receive almost no return on whatever money we manage to save.
Government loves inflation because inflation rewards borrowers, and the US government is the world’s largest borrower ... Inflation rewards them because they are able to repay their borrowed money with cheaper money.
The Fed’s manipulations and money printing are harming the nation and the world.
The Federal Reserve is a central planning agency in the classic socialist mold, period. Just like the old central-planning boards of the Soviet Union, the Fed is composed of appointed bureaucrats who, in a top-down fashion, plan the complex monetary matters affecting hundreds of millions of individuals and businesses.
In the history of American politics, the statists have always been advocates of a central bank, whereas the defenders of liberty have always opposed it. After all, legalized counterfeiting has always been every totalitarian's dream ... and every freeman's nightmare.
Since the founding of the Federal Reserve, the dollar has depreciated more than 95%. As the primary destroyer of our currency, the Fed is not only one of the greatest threats to our freedom, but it degenerates our American character. As Paul Cantor explains in "Hyperinflation and Hyperreality: Thomas Mann in Light of Austrian Economics":
Inflation is that moment when as a result of government action the distinction between real money and fake money begins to dissolve. That is why inflation has such a corrosive effect on society. Money is one of the primary measures of value in any society, perhaps the primary one, the principal repository of value. As such, money is a central source of stability, continuity, and coherence in any community. Hence to tamper with the basic money supply is to tamper with a community’s sense of value. By making money worthless, inflation threatens to undermine and dissolve all sense of value in a society.
What the Fed has done to our money shouldn't surprise anyone, destruction is what tyrants do best. That conservatives are supporting Herman Cain, however, should scare the living daylights out of you. Because once a former central banker is considered a "conservative" in America, we're no longer traveling down The Road to Serfdom. We've arrived.
The financial crisis of 2008 had nothing to do with "free markets," it was the predictable failure of central planning. But as a former chair of the collapsed central planning system, Herman Cain agitated for TARP, wanting taxpayers to bailout his friends.
By Herman Cain, September 22, 2008
There is plenty of blame to go around for the crisis on Wall Street, starting with the CEOs and directors of the wounded businesses, followed by failed congressional oversight that they have and did not use properly.
Admittedly, these Wall Street bailouts and "special loan arrangements" by the U.S. Treasury and the Federal Reserve seem inappropriate and excessive to the typical citizen, but if the Bush Administration had done nothing, Mike and Mary Mainstreet would have been outraged once the ripple effect knocked on their door.
President Bush and his administration will not get any credit from the mainstream media or the Democrats for their efforts to avoid a do-nothing scenario. But at this point in his administration, I don’t think President Bush cares who gets the credit. That attitude is good for America.
At least a do-something president with the right attitude gives us a chance to avoid the worse case scenario.
Notice that he didn't say a word about the Federal Reserve's role in the crisis, that is, other than imply its use as a benevolent tool in the hands of his "do something" hero George W. Bush.
Herman Cain has clearly demonstrated a statist mindset with the above article, one that is antithetical to conservatism, libertarianism, and the founding principles of our nation.
By Herman Cain, October 20, 2008
Wake up people! Owning a part of the major banks in America is not a bad thing. We could make a profit while solving a problem.
The free market purists' objection to this is that it smacks at government control of the banking industry, which is called nationalization. They are correct. It smacks, but it is not nationalization because that would require the government to own at least 51 percent of the entity for an indefinite period of time.
The ownership by the taxpayers is going to be relatively small and nowhere near the amount needed to be called nationalization. So what’s the problem?
Unprecedented problems require unprecedented solutions. The actions by the Treasury are a win-win for the taxpayer. But the mainstream media does not get brownie points for reporting win-win solutions for the taxpayers. Their focus is doom and gloom.
These actions by the Treasury, the Federal Reserve Bank and the actions by the Federal Depositors Insurance Corporation (FDIC) are all intended to help solve an unprecedented financial crisis. Unlike steps taken prior to and during the Great Depression, these actions have a high probability of success.
How's all that "recovery plan" profit making working out for you taxpaying suckers? One helluva "win-win," huh? Aren't you just grateful you didn't listen to those stupid "free market purists," and trusted your central planning overlords instead?
If you ask me, I'd say putting Herman Cain in the Oval Office has a "high probability" of failure. Go ahead. Compare Cain's economic predictions to those of Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX). Then you can tell me who got it right.
Now, Cain, a former board member of the Federal Reserve, is telling us that the central bank already has internal audits, that there isn't anything new that we’d learn from a significant audit and they haven't been hiding anything from Americans. He chalks it up to people not knowing enough about the Fed.
Hm. Ok. If the Fed wasn't trying to hide anything, why did they want until legislation was passed with a statutory requirement forcing to release the names of foreign banks they loaned money to? ... [W]why does Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke claim that they aren't printing money when that's exactly what quantitative easing is?
Despite Cain's claims to the contrary, he is defending the Federal Reserve. And it doesn't reflect the behavior of someone claiming to be a conservative.
The Fed hasn't been hiding anything?
This one is totally insane. Thank heavens Ron Paul has put pressure on the Fed, trying to find out what it is up to.
Staffers in the Senate and the House, whose queries about Fed spending have been rebuffed for nearly a century, are now poring over 21,000 transactions and discovering a host of outrages and lunacies in the "other" budget. It is as though someone sat down and made a list of every individual on earth who actually did not need emergency financial assistance from the United States government, and then handed them the keys to the public treasure. The Fed sent billions in bailout aid to banks in places like Mexico, Bahrain and Bavaria, billions more to a spate of Japanese car companies, more than $2 trillion in loans each to Citigroup and Morgan Stanley, and billions more to a string of lesser millionaires and billionaires with Cayman Islands addresses.
But if you want to get a true sense of what the "shadow budget" is all about, all you have to do is look closely at the taxpayer money handed over to a single company that goes by a seemingly innocuous name: Waterfall TALF Opportunity [who] boasts a couple of interesting names among its chief investors: Christy Mack and Susan Karches.
Christy is the wife of John Mack, the chairman of Morgan Stanley. Susan is the widow of Peter Karches, a close friend of the Macks who served as president of Morgan Stanley's investment-banking division. Neither woman appears to have any serious history in business, apart from a few philanthropic experiences. Yet the Federal Reserve handed them both low-interest loans of nearly a quarter of a billion dollars through a complicated bailout program that virtually guaranteed them millions in risk-free income.
Wait a minute. Hold the phone. Herman Cain is attempting a Flip-Flop!
[H]ere we are just four weeks and a presidential campaign announcement later, and Cain has done a turnabout, posting the video below on his YouTube account yesterday:
Before Cain said anything about the Federal Reserve, I noted that while he is an incredibly nice and approachable guy, Cain is inconsistent and somewhat of an opportunist. My friends, what I’ve posted above is "Exhibit A."
By the way, both Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) have filed legislation that would require the Government Accountability Office to audit the Federal Reserve.
Herman Cain recently told Eliot Spitzer that he "support[s] keeping the food stamps program" and "a lot of the other programs" too.
Cain supports the dangerous Fair Tax plan, which "does nothing to tame the federal leviathan ... What is fair about allowing the government to confiscate 23 percent of the value of every new good and service?"
Herman Cain sure isn't a conservative, or a libertarian, or a believer in free markets and limited-government. So who exactly, is Herman Cain?