Ben Bernanke is Time Magazine's Person of the Year
GLENN: Do we have a Cindy Sheehan update on Time Magazine? Time Magazine has made Ben Bernanke the Man of the Year. We actually should have gone back. When did Ben Bernanke become the Fed chair? 2005, 6?
STU: 6 or 7.
GLENN: Has it been that long already? . So wait a minute, Ben Bernanke was there at the beginning before --
PAT: At the very beginning of the melt-down.
GLENN: Where did he come from.
STU: February 1st, 2006.
GLENN: 2006. So he was there way before the meltdown.
STU: And Time's reasoning is specific. I can give you a quote here. The story of the year was a weak economy that could have been much, much weaker. Thank the man who runs the Federal Reserve, our mild mannered economic overlord.
GLENN: Wait. He was there in 2006.
GLENN: That's before anybody was saying there was a problem. The problem that the banks and Wall Street caused because they're all fat cats, according to Barack Obama, why didn't our banking and Wall Street overlord recognize that?
STU: Yeah, I mean, because this is essentially Obama's argument that he inherited the problem. You can make -- there's some validation with -- some people will argue the Greenspan thing and everything else. But he was there in the middle of it handling it. Where was he before?
PAT: Before taking the job? I think he came from JC Penney, didn't he?
GLENN: Find out where he was before that, Ben Bernanke, was he a professor?
STU: Merrill Lynch -- hold on. He's an academic, history, Stanford Graduate School of Business. Sorting through a little thing here.
GLENN: He didn't send us his resume?
PAT: Immediately before the Chair, JC Penney, I think he was. Men's suits department at JC Penney. Yeah. I could be wrong. But it happened once before.
GLENN: How long does it take?
STU: I'm trying to look through the bio.
GLENN: I don't need the bio I need the resume. Get Ben Bernanke's, go to askjeeves.com.
PAT: That's where you get the real scoop.
GLENN: What was Ben Bernanke's last job?
STU: Before his appointment to chairman, Dr. Bernanke was chairman of the president's council of economic advisors from June 2005 to --
GLENN: So he was part of the -- what was he before he went into Washington?
PAT: He got a Ph.D. at MIT. That's pretty good.
STU: Dr. Bernanke already served the Federal Reserve system in several roles. Member of the Board of Governors for the Federal Reserve from 2002 to 2005.
GLENN: In 2002 when they jacked down the interest rates, he was part of that. Just as Timothy Geithner was part, he was a Federal Reserve chair of New York. So he oversaw all of the banks here. He's the guy who missed it all.
PAT: I don't know if I would blame him completely he certainly was there.
GLENN: Excuse me? Excuse me?
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STU: Ben Bernanke?
GLENN: Timothy Geithner.
STU: Geithner, I'm sorry.
GLENN: That was his job to oversee the banks here.
STU: That's a completely different story. He was a member of The Academic Advisory Panel at the Fed in New York from 1990 to 2002.
GLENN: He's been at the Fed the whole time. The Fed is the problem here. The Fed -- Alan Greenspan said he didn't even understand these CDOs. He didn't even understand them. What? That's a problem Al. So I'm trying to figure out how Time Magazine is splitting he was part of the system but he's fixed it. He was part of the system that created it. It's like, hey, hey, Bernie Madoff, he made like $4 million for people.
STU: Let's say Bernie Madoff went and did all this fraud and made billions of dollars somehow turned it around you could make the argument that you ignore the first half of his year turn it around say that's great. But Ben Bernanke's turning it around was losing four million jobs.
GLENN: Instead of what, five? Four million jobs. Seven. Four in the last nine months or 12 months.
STU: I was thinking of it in terms of this last year.
GLENN: Yeah. No, no. Seven million jobs. That's his big deal. And even if it was $50 billion that Bernie Madoff, would you herald him as a hero? Would he be on Time Magazine the cover saying my gosh look at Bernie Madoff, he made $10 billion. He's the Man of the Year. You'd be like, yeah, he lost the first 50 billion.
STU: You know what this logic is. It's Robert Kramer. His argument was, look, I stole a couple million dollars but eventually they got it back and I was doing it because I meant well.
PAT: Or it's like a physician who beats a man almost to death and then treats him. He doesn't get back to normal he's still damaged severely. Not normal still alive not in critical condition anymore. He's in serious condition now. Hey, look what I did. I fixed this guy.
STU: Great point.
GLENN: This is fantastic.
STU: So apparently Ben Bernanke for that gets Person of the Year. The way Time breaks it up they have Person of the Year. A list, and runners up.
GLENN: Which, wait, which the A list includes what's his name? Usain Bolt.
PAT: He's in the second tier.
STU: A list is just Person of the Year. Ben Bernanke. B list is the runners up which is McKristol, the Chinese worker, Nancy Pelosi.
GLENN: Let's go through this. McKristol. How is McKristol, the guy that the president doesn't listen to.
STU: He asked for a raise.
GLENN: And didn't get it.
STU: He got some.
GLENN: His advice is so convoluted it's taken the president six months to sort through it and then come up with a different answer. All right. So he was considered. You know what that is, that is the Time Magazine going let's not alienate everybody who loves the troops.
STU: It's possible. Although he did make that story I mean big you could argue. Because if it wasn't for that, Obama could have said well we only added 100 troops.
GLENN: If that's the way that the Time Magazine spun it they didn't mean it.
STU: I'm sure they didn't either. The Chinese worker.
GLENN: Which is ridiculous. They could spin that as the slave that now owns you.
STU: Nancy Pelosi, which I think you can argue certainly should be on the Person of the Year list. She did get a lot done.
GLENN: I do think she belongs on the Person of the Year list.
STU: Usain Bolt is the other one on the B list, the sprinter, who is very fast. You've got A lister, Ben Bernanke. Those are the B listers. They have a C lister category.
GLENN: Down to the C list.
STU: Now, in 2005 that's where they stuck Cindy Sheehan. She did make the list but made it into the C lister list.
GLENN: What exactly did Cindy Sheehan accomplish?
STU: They have a write up right here. Who would have thought this mother of a soldier killed in Iraq could spoil the president's vacation and become a spiritual leader of the antiwar camp.
PAT: Who said she spoiled his vacation. Did he come out and say Cindy Sheehan spoiled my vacation? I was chopping some wood in the back then I heard this noise a big ruckus over here. She wrecked it for me. I don't remember that.
STU: Keeping a vigil outside of Bush's Crawford ranch for nearly a month Sheehan become a folksy celebrity, a hero to some and villain to others. That was the write-up. The interesting thing the C list in which she appeared also has someone who appeared, Glenn Beck, also mattered apparently in some weird way. Today. He didn't matter then at all. Today you apparently mattered. Would you like to hear some of the people?
GLENN: Yes. Are these the people that will soon prison number 1179.
STU: The prison matters C listers of time. Shocking Glenn Beck in the same category as Adam Lambert.
GLENN: Stop with the Adam Lambert thing.
PAT: There's a certain [indiscernible] between the two of you.
GLENN: There is we ought to meet this Adam Lambert guy.
STU: John and Kate Gosselin. Hamid Karzai. Rahm Emanuel.
GLENN: Bigger list than mine.
STU: Paired Jay Leno and David Letterman together. Which I don't understand. Bernie Madoff.
GLENN: I got it.
STU: One got screwed.
STU: Come on, do it --
GLENN: Let's leave it at that.
STU: That's the end.
GLENN: By the way, I'm going to be on Leno Friday night flying out to do Leno on Friday night. You don't want to miss it.
STU: Barack Obama on this list. Manny Pacquiao. Sarah Palin. The Twilight stars.
GLENN: Hang a second. Sarah Palin does not belong on the same list with me and the Twilight stars.
STU: I don't know. The way this looks appears they're doing it in order. Number one is more important than number two on this list.
GLENN: Who is number one?
STU: I could be wrong. Number one is -- number one is, of course, obviously, just say it along with me, Neda Agha-Soltan. Which --
PAT: You don't have to explain that.
STU: Neda Agha-Soltan. Are you hearing me? Is the microphone not working? I'm saying Neda.
GLENN: I'm pretending I don't know for the listeners who don't know.
PAT: For the ill-informed talk to us about Neda.
STU: If you don't know Neda Agha-Soltan. I'm not going to lower myself to answer that.
GLENN: Pat, lower yourself and Google search just to figure out how to spell the name. She's number one.
STU: Or he, yes. One of the two is number one. Then you're number two. And then I don't know if this is actually in order.
GLENN: It can't be, Adam Lambert, it can't be.
STU: Adam Lambert number eight.
GLENN: Hang on. We'll be back in just a second.