Bernanke at the O.K. Corral
They didn’t treat Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke ugly in Wyoming — as Texas Governor and Republican Presidential candidate Rick Perry suggested they might in his state — but they gave him food for thought.
Bernanke, in lighthearted comments opening the annual Fed Jackson Hole conference, said he’d taken advantange of his visit this year to take his family to see a rodeo, a big deal in a state that prides itself on its cowboy heritage.
At the event, Bernanke said, a rider came into the arena waving a large an American flag and told the crowd, “Now I know y’all don’t agree with everything that happens in Washington.”
Here, the Fed chairman, who has been accused of treachery over the central bank’s $2.3 billion bond-buying spree, paused meaningfully, drawing laughter from his audience of central bankers and economists.
However, Bernanke went on, the rider concluded by saying, “But there’s still plenty about being an American to be proud of.”
Bernanke said the remarks were a lesson to him in how widely decisions made by policymakers can reverberate.
“I’m going to think hard about that rodeo,” he said.