- The Biden administration misread the rising threat of inflation for a variety of reasons, according to several economists and current and former government officials.
- Those reasons include Fed influence across the administration, the folly of traditional economic forecasting, political pressure to spend big and a lack of urgency in deciding who would run the Federal Reserve, they said.
- “It’s always going to be an issue in any White House, how the policy and politics interact,” said a former Fed official. “I just think they miscalculated.”
When President Joe Biden nominated former Fed Chair Janet Yellen to run the Treasury Department, his rationale was simple: “No one is better prepared to deal with this crisis.”
The crisis to which he referred was a “K-shaped” economic recovery that had exacerbated inequality in the wake of a once-in-a-generation pandemic. The administration had a simple plan, and Yellen would help carry it out.
“He makes nations great, and destroys them;
He enlarges nations, and guides them” Job 12:23
Once hundreds of millions of Americans were vaccinated against Covid-19, and trillions of dollars in new government spending flowed into the economy, the world would return to normal under a supercharged recovery.
One year later, a different problem — inflation — is dampening the recovery, sucking the oxygen out of strategy sessions, angering voters and threatening Democrats’ razor-thin governing margins. This is happening despite warnings from economists and months of vows from the Federal Reserve and the White House it would be short-lived.
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