I am a strong supporter of Janet Yellen and believe her support for the fiscal and monetary policies best designed to produce a stronger, prompter recovery from the Great Recession makes her the superior replacement for Ben Bernanke. The criticism of Larry Summers’ position on fiscal stimulus, however, was generally inaccurate. Within the Obama/Biden administration, the best known economists (Summers, Christina Romer, and Jared Bernstein) proved dramatically better economists than did the non-economists who eventually came to dominate Obama’s economic policies (Timothy Geithner, Jacob Lew, and William Daley). Summers, Romer, and Bernstein were strong voices in favor of fiscal stimulus. Summers deserves some additional praise because he had to break from his mentor’s (Bob Rubin’s) pro-austerity dogmas to reach his anti-austerian position.
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