Friday, October 21, 2011

Economic Meltdown Hall of Fame Class of 2011

Actors have the Academy Awards as the pinnacle of achievement. Athletes have Hall of Fames. Presidents have Mount Rushmore.

What do great economic minds who warned the country of the disastrous results of financial bubbles get? There is that Nobel Prize thing, but that is rigged in the favor of insiders and is the domain of partisan hacks.

No, for the most part these distinguished thinkers are usually mocked and called Chicken Littles on CNBC or Fox Business, ignored by the mainstream media and sabotaged in the halls of Congress.

We here at The Chartographer's Map Room believe they deserve far better treatment. After all, if someone who can throw a ball 100 mph can be exalted by the public, shouldn't our brave thinkers who were lone voices crying in the wilderness get some love? We think so, too.

So, welcome to our first annual Economic Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Honorees had to meet two essential criteria:

1. That they are independent thinkers and truth-tellers and aren't Wall Street shills. If they are involved in government, they must be people who put the truth and ideals ahead of partisan politics and can cross political aisles as necessary.

2. That they had to be ahead of their time and had predicted some aspect of the economic disaster in which our country is embroiled.

So without further ado, here are the six distinguished individuals of the Class of 2011: (And yes, there will be an Economic Meltdown Hall of Shame coming soon as well)

Ron Paul:
Presidential candidate who has been an advocate for Austrian Economics before it was cool. Steadfastly refuses to compromise his principles for votes. Recognized early that financial bubbles and fiscal irresponsibility would place the U.S. economy on the brink.

Peter Schiff:
Endured scathing mockery from lesser minds on CNBC and Fox Business with a smile and good cheer. He nailed almost every aspect of the meltdown, yet no one except Ben Stein had the good grace to apologize to him. Worst of all, most of the fools who were wrong are still getting airtime on financial television.

Ross Perot: That giant sucking sound of U.S. jobs being outsourced can be tracked all the way back to the early 1990s, when NAFTA and other one-sided "free trade agreements" were enacted. The man who heard that noise first? Former Presidential candidate, Ross Perot.

Pat Buchanan: He's been called every pejorative in the dictionary for what he's written about immigration and shifting demographics and its effects on the culture and the economy. What he hasn't been called often enough is simply, "correct". He's warned about NAFTA, globalism, outsourcing, a lack of economic patriotism, the destruction of the nuclear family and the dwindling of the presence of worker's unions. All of these have been factors in leading us to national financial insolvency.

David Walker: That rarest of governmental officials: a high-ranking civil servant who vastly outperformed his salary. The former Comptroller of the Government Accounting Office toured the country for years warning the nation of the dangers of partisan budget shenanigans and "the demographic tsunami that will never recede. He was ignored by Washington. But not here.

Nouriel Roubini: "Dr. Doom" proved painfully correct in his essay, The Rising Risk of a Systemic Financial Meltdown: The Twelve Steps to
Financial Disaster
. Mr. Roubini also deserves a nomination for this concise and cogent interview with the Wall Street Journal.

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