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Post details: Strong Dollar

Strong Dollar

Sometimes it is illuminating to reread old news.

2003 (December)
NEW YORK (CNN/Money) Monday, President George Bush told reporters, "We have a strong dollar policy which is good for the economic vitality of this country."

2004 (December)
(WashingtonNote) "The policy of my government is a strong dollar policy," Bush said. "We believe that the market should make the decisions about the relationship between the dollar and the euro."

2005 (January)
(ExpressIndia) Asked if he was concerned about the fall of the US dollar, Bush told USA Today in an interview: "We have a strong dollar policy in this administration. And I'm confident foreign investors will find America a good place to invest."

2006 (December)
(New York Times) As the dollar fell over the past two weeks, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson Jr. played his role, saying that "a strong dollar is clearly in our nation's best interest."

2007 (October)
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal on Thursday that he believes in a "strong dollar policy" and that a trade war with China is not in the U.S. interest.

While all this macho talk went on, the dollar weakened, weakened and then weakened some more. When measured by euro, it slid from 1.19 in 2001 to 0.68 in 2007. In about 6 years it lost half of its value - ironically on the watch of a team of the most vocal monetary cheerleaders in this part of the Galaxy.

If a man on the street talked like this in the face of an obviously uncooperative reality, he'd be called a clown. But in the executive branch the same statements earn you an epithet "a person of character". Especially when you shield yourself with frequent references to a divine being.

If a man on the street bought an expensive flat screen TV, even though he was deep in debt, his wife would hit him with an ironing board. If an administration which is in deep debt embarks on an expensive and poorly justified war adventure, it gets re-elected. Go figure.

I read somewhere that no nation achieved greatness by driving its currency into dust. George Bush clearly thinks otherwise. For his own sake, I hope that he will be able to plead insanity when history judges him.

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