Skip to content

Yellen Victory Lap Could Be Called the Forked Tongue Tour

The treasury secretary has supported all of the progressive, big-government socialist policies coming from the far left of the Democratic Party, and her analysis about its effectiveness is false.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen
U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen

There they go again, President Biden and company out on the campaign trail telling us how wonderful their economic policies have been. Wait, scrap “wonderful” and insert “successful.” Fabulously successful economic policies, they say.

The problem is, in barely more than a year Bidenomics has taken a noninflationary boom and turned it into a high-inflation bust. Frankly, with no relief in sight — at least until the cavalry comes and changes congressional policies after November — I am delighted to see my dear friends on the Wall Street Journal editorial board and at The New York Sun take the treasury secretary to task.

Janet Yellen is leading the Biden economic victory tour, but unfortunately she has supported all of the progressive, big-government socialist policies coming from the far left of the Democratic Party. She believes that the $2 trillion stimulus package of March 2021 was necessary to boost the economy. Trouble is, the economy was already in a V-shaped recovery coming out of the pandemic, undergirded by President Trump’s policies of low taxes, deregulation, and open fossil fuel spigots.

Ms. Yellen, who is an accomplished economist and a former Fed chairwoman and is married to a distinguished Nobelist, is speaking with a forked tongue. Her analysis is false.

Moreover, along with Chairman Powell and Mr. Biden, she was leading the charge, which created inflationary pressures from extravagant government spending, massive government borrowing, and exuberant Fed money-printing.

These are all homegrown policies that preceded Vladimir Putin invading Ukraine. There was an 8 percent inflation rate caused by these huge fiscal mistakes. That is why Ms. Yellen’s reputation is plunging. Personally, I hate to see it. Professionally, I have to talk about it.

As the Wall Street Journal points out, and as I’ve said dozens of times over the past year, the Trump tax cuts increased real wages for blue-collar working people and minorities. Unemployment rates for those groups plunged to 50-year lows. Poverty declined. Inequality declined.

The biggest winners from the personal and business tax cuts were middle- and lower-income people, not the top earners. These are facts.

Ms. Yellen, speaking in Detroit, argues that Mr. Trump’s tax cuts caused higher inequality and slower growth. She is factually wrong, and she knows it.

By the way, with Mr. Biden’s 8 percent inflation rate, real worker wages have actually fallen by 3.5 percent over the past year.

The first bullet in today’s White House economic blueprint fact sheet says workers are being empowered. Oops: Forgot about the falling real wages and family incomes.

It also mentions making and building in America. Wait a second, though, you can’t get a permit to make or build anything in Mr. Biden’s America. His zealous environmental rules have stopped almost everything: all manner of energy and, by the way, ordinary road-building infrastructure, too. Can’t get it past the fanatics in the White House and the EPA.

Rewarding work, not wealth, they say. Well, every model, government or private sector, shows Mr. Biden’s recent legislation will heavily tax the middle class, and the IRS will spend its time unloading on the middle class. And virtually no one in the entire American population believes the “Inflation Reduction Bill” will reduce inflation. Virtually no one.

I will conclude with this thought: This radical climate change obsession that informs every single policy of the Biden administration is moving the U.S. and the world economy toward an unstoppable economic decline. Hat tip to the Wall Street Journal’s Joseph Sternberg for his latest column, “The Coming Global Crisis of Climate Policy.”

There is no climate emergency. It’s all a central-planning socialist fabrication, trying to jam this bureaucratic religion down our throats.

Fossil fuels generate about 85 percent of the world's power, even after decades of government subsidies and crazy quilted regulatory plans.

Yet what would happen if any of these climate policies — for net-zero this or net-zero that; or we’re going to take your car away from you; or we’re not going to let you run your air conditioner; or literally any of these crazy policies that just want to unplug America — ever truly came to pass? It would be a global economic and financial catastrophe.

Regardless, I want to go home with an optimistic frame of mind heading into the weekend. Why? Because the cavalry’s coming.

Larry Kudlow was the Director of the National Economic Council under President Trump 2018-2021. His Fox Business show "Kudlow" airs at 4 p.m &. radio show airs on 770 ABC from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.