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Tipsheet

While Country Has Suffered Through Highest Inflation in Decades, AP Focuses on Fed's 'Diverse Leadership'

AP Photo/Tony Dejak

The Democrats and their allies in the mainstream media sure do love focusing on diversity, especially when it comes to the Biden administration. One case in point includes Christopher Rugaber's headline for the Associated Press, how "Fed tackles inflation with its most diverse leadership ever." The country may have been suffering under the highest inflation experienced in four decades, in large part due to the policy agenda of the Biden administration, but at least the the Federal Reserve is diverse.

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The make-up of Fed members is discussed early on, and then enthusiastically throughout the piece:

It’s not just at Jackson Hole but also in the Fed’s boardroom where its leadership has become its most diverse ever. There are more female, Black and openly gay officials contributing to the central bank’s interest-rate decisions than at any time in its 109-year history. Many are also far less wealthy than the officials they have replaced.

Over time, economists say, a wider range of voices will deepen the Fed’s perspective as it weighs the consequences of raising or lowering rates. It may also help diversify a profession that historically hasn’t been seen as particularly welcoming to women and minorities.

...

Rhonda Vonshay Sharpe, an economist who is president of the Women’s Institute for Society, Equity and Race, said she welcomed the broadening of the Fed’s leadership. Sharpe said she’s “hopeful that a more diverse group of people will pay attention” to what the Fed does and aspire to high-level economic roles.

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The change at the Fed has been a rapid one, with three African Americans and three women having joined the central bank’s 19-member interest-rate committee just this year. (Under the Fed’s rotating system, only 12 of the 19 committee members vote each year on its rate decisions.)

The Fed’s influential seven-member Board of Governors, based in Washington, now includes two Black economists, Lisa Cook and Philip Jefferson, who were both nominated by President Joe Biden and were sworn in this May. They are the third and fourth Black people on the board. Governors get to vote on every Fed rate decision.

Biden also elevated Lael Brainard, a governor since 2014, to the board’s powerful vice chair position.

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While Rugaber does eventually get to discussing the high inflation rates that the Fed is tasked with handling when it comes to interest rates, it takes a back seat. Before the second half of the article, the high interest rates are only referenced briefly, with regards to a speech from Chair Jerome Powell who "stressed that the Fed plans further rate hikes and expects to keep its benchmark rate high until the worst inflation bout in four decades eases considerably — even if doing so causes job losses and financial pain for households and businesses."

Another admission doesn't come until much later in the piece, in that Rugaber writes "with inflation near a 40-year high, the Fed’s policymaking committee is moving unanimously to sharply raise rates to try to cool the economy and lower inflation."

President Joe Biden and the Democrats just earlier this month passed the misnamed "Inflation Reduction Act," which will actually worsen inflation in addition to raising taxes. Even Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) acknowledged it won't provide immediate relief, though they supported it regardless. 

The inflation rate was slightly lower from July than it was in June, but we're talking minuscule amounts of 8.5 percent in July, as opposed to 9.1 percent in June. It was still enough for Biden to stunningly claim that there was "zero percent inflation during the month of July."

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When it comes to Rugaber's article, it was ruthlessly ratioed on Twitter over the weekend. It has over 4,000 replies, mostly mocking the tweet and article's obsession with diversity, with a majority of the retweets being quoted retweets doing the same.

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