US Fed Chairman Bernanke demands austerity
By Barry Grey
22 October 2009
In remarks Monday to a conference on Asia and the global economic crisis held by the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank in Santa Barbara, California, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke called for austerity policies to rein in US budget deficits and the ballooning national debt.
In the name of reducing global economic imbalances between debtor countries with large trade deficits, such as the US, and creditor nations with large trade surpluses, such as China and Japan, Bernanke demanded that the US government adopt policies in the medium-term to cut domestic consumption and reduce social spending.
Reflecting the consensus within the American ruling elite, and the class policy of the Obama administration, the central bank chief was implicitly insisting that the economic crisis be used to carry through a drastic and permanent lowering of the wages and living standards of the American working class.