Have you ever had a holiday vacation on Martha’s Vineyard? So boring! Once you get over the “Ah and there’s where Ted Kennedy crashed his car and drowned that lady” historical thing — sorry, Denby! — you realize it’s just a place full of crappy tourist shops and terrible humid boiling weather and a bunch of ugly gated beach mansions surrounded by swamps, bogs and discarded “lobster rolls.” How to jazz it up? Barack Obama decided to go on the teevee to announce what everybody already knew he was doing: giving Ben Bernanke another term.
Who knows how successful Bernanke was in avoiding another Great Depression. We don’t, and we are experts in such things. All we do know is that America & Earth did not plunge into another awful decade-long Awful Financial Collapse with 25% unemployment and people starving to death and witty urbane private eyes dealing with all kinds of once-respectable people and their fiendish, desperate schemes.
So, our loss, really.
But! Bernanke is an expert in the various Great Depression mythologies and banking legends, and he basically spent his whole life preparing for the job of trying to keep America from falling back into such a decade-long nightmare, and maybe, by throwing trillions of dollars at everything, especially reckless, idiot-run investment banks and global insurance companies, he did just the right thing. Nobody will ever know for sure, but we know that this crappy recession is still very much a recession along the lines of the Reagan 1981/1983 Recession, which was terrible but not terrible enough to inspire The Grapes of Wrath.
(We got John Cougar Mellencamp albums, instead. Yay.)
(Or maybe that was Bruce Springsteen?)
Anyway, congratulations, Helicopter Ben! Try not to, uh, make shit worse.