I thought this was a joke at first.
Courtesy of HuffPo:
For years, the economic commentariat has enjoyed a running joke: Stephen Moore.
Moore, you see, has made a career of advancing various right-wing political priorities by dressing up as an economist and saying things about money and numbers in print and on TV. Unfortunately, almost nothing he says is true.
Moore is so bad that an editor at the Kansas City Star once refused to run literally anything he ever wrote, because a piece Moore had previously published in the paper was so littered with basic factual errors. He’s a living embodiment of the worst elements of the economics profession ― a man who doesn’t care about the truth, abuses statistics, makes outlandish predictions, smears his opponents and never pays any professional price.
Moore is constantly, laughably wrong. In 1993, he said President Bill Clinton’s slight income tax increase for the wealthiest Americans would “torpedo” the economy. In 2009, he warned that federal budget deficits and the Federal Reserve’s low-interest rates were a recipe for hyperinflation, and then doubled down on that prediction. In 2010, he said surging prices would send the price of gold to $2,000 an ounce, as investors fled the worthless dollar for precious metals. None of these things ever happened. He spent much of 2018 applauding President Donald Trump’s supposed efforts to “shoot for” zero tariffs, while Trump actually imposed hundreds of billions of dollars in tariffs.
Moore, unscathed, has bounced from the Cato Institute to the Club for Growth to the Heritage Foundation, happily absorbing the excess capital of conservative think-tank donors in the market for a white guy with the courage to advocate tax cuts. On Friday, in what would be the economist’s greatest, most frightening achievement, Trump announced that he will nominate Moore to the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors.
Just in case you think the Huffington Post is exaggerating here is what New York Magazine had to say about this choice:
Stephen Moore’s career as an economic analyst has been a decades-long continuous procession of error and hackery. It is not despite but precisely because of these errors that Moore now finds himself in the astonishing position of having been offered a position on the Federal Reserve board by President Trump.
Moore’s primary area of pseudo-expertise — he is not an economist — is fiscal policy. He is a dedicated advocate of supply-side economics, relentlessly promoting his fanatical hatred of redistribution and belief that lower taxes for the rich can and will unleash wondrous prosperity. Like nearly all supply-siders, he has clung to this dogma in the face of repeated, spectacular failures.
As I said at the top when I first heard Moore’s name I could not believe that even Trump would give this charlatan a job of any importance.
But then I remembered that Stephen Moore is a frequent guest commentator on Fox News and realized that Trump thinks that the only real qualification that anybody needs to get a job in his administration is to be somehow connected to Fox News.
I am not sure exactly how much damage Moore can do while on the board of directors of the Federal Reserve, but if it can be broken I am sure he will break it.