A Diamond Lost Hurts All of Us

This post is my 7th entry since I started the Blogger Challenge on May 31. I was planning to write on a  @projectdomino prompt tonight, but I read something more important in the New York Times online.

Unfortunately, due to poor decisions by a number of Republican Senators, a Nobel Prize winning economist is withdrawing his nomination to the Federal Reserve. Peter Diamond, nominated by President Obama, wrote an OpEd piece in the New York Times, announcing these intentions (“When a Nobel Prize Isn’t Enough” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/06/opinion/06diamond.html?_r=1&src=ISMR_HP_LO_MST_FB .

This is a huge loss for our country. It represents politics over skill and experience, which is very sad, given the urgent issues which face our country. Mr. Diamond is an expert on structural unemployment and the Social Security system. Those are two of the most important issues that need to be addressed by the Federal Reserve, and our country in general.  Having an expert on these issues on the Fed would provide Diamond with a voice to be heard, to set the national agenda in working on these matters.

Yet this highly esteemed MIT professor has been deemed “unqualified” by a number of Senators, particularly Senator Shelby of Alabama. Shelby cites his lack of experience in developing monetary policy. The Federal Reserve should be the “best and brightest” of our nation’s economists, working together to address critical economic issues. His areas of expertise are vitally important to developing the foundations of monetary policy.

The Federal Reserve is missing a number of members. This is unfortunate and hopefully the vacant positions will be filled with other, very well qualified people.

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