Why Ben Bernanke Is Like A Monkey

Tyler Durden's picture


Excerpted from Seth Klarman's Baupost 2012 Letter to investors,

If economics were a hard science like chemistry, you’d mix a little of this with a bit of that and the concoction would lead to strong economic growth, full employment, rising home prices, buoyant financial markets, and low inflation every time. But economics is a soft science, and real life simply doesn’t work so predictably. Though economists might wish otherwise, economics is, at its core, behavioral.


Modern economies are too complex to be reliably modeled; their connections and correlations are loose and imprecise, the second- and third-order effects largely immeasurable, the fickle vagaries of individual and aggregate human behavior utterly unknowable. Put an economist in a powerful government job and provide levers that can be pulled to start the printing presses, set reserve requirements, fiddle with the Fed funds rate, expand the Fed’s balance sheet, and deliver indecipherable communiqués, and that economist will feel compelled to pull those levers.


He or she, like a monkey with a typewriter, might even give us Shakespeare (or Adam Smith) on occasion. But mostly that economist will spout gibberish, a mélange of untested and potentially counterproductive measures that unleash all manner of unintended consequences.


Were the meddling to actually remedy the targeted deficiency, it might well be at the cost of dangerous feedback loops and unexpected ripples growing beneath the surface into the incipient waves of tomorrow’s much larger problems.

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Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:33 | 3199309 GNWT
GNWT's picture

If every banker had a notion... Like Ben Bernank-i-a... Then every country'd be ZIPR-in'... Just like the USA...

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:35 | 3199310 GNWT
Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:37 | 3199321 vmromk
vmromk's picture

A monkey ?

His criminality would make Al Capone blush.

Bernie Madoff keeps a poster of Bernanke in his jail cell.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:50 | 3199369 aint no fortuna...
aint no fortunate son's picture

The other way he's like a monkey is they both hurl their feces at anything that will stick

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:53 | 3199384 Big Slick
Big Slick's picture

Liebe mein affe-monkey!!

(Now is ze time on Sprockets ven vee dance)

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:54 | 3199391 Freddie
Freddie's picture

"Molon Labe monkey"

Come take my monkey.


Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:02 | 3199418 TerminalDebt
TerminalDebt's picture

He has the best beard monkey can buy

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:19 | 3199431 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Unquantifiable, bitchez!

(Oh, and Fuck You, Keynes!)

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:20 | 3199467 AnonymousCitizen
AnonymousCitizen's picture

Time to spank the monkey.

I don't even know what that means.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:31 | 3199500 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Someone........Shock the Monkey..........please.

<Hmmmm.......now where do you suppose I should attach the electrodes.>

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:36 | 3199526 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

I'm severely disheartened by all the anti-monkey sentiment in this post.  Especially when we all know it's Banananke's fault...

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:53 | 3199590 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture


So where do you think we should attach the electrodes? :)

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 17:36 | 3200343 espirit
espirit's picture

He flings poo?

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:59 | 3199629 ShrNfr
ShrNfr's picture


Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:20 | 3199713 Jake88
Jake88's picture

LOL. Bad monkey

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:50 | 3199371 Troll Magnet
Troll Magnet's picture


Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:52 | 3199378 Thomas
Thomas's picture

Go chemistry!

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:29 | 3199495 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Fuck you too pal!

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:35 | 3199809 Troll Magnet
Troll Magnet's picture


Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:58 | 3199619 Pegasus Muse
Pegasus Muse's picture

"I just wanted to let you guys know GDP was down, not up ...."

Bennie and the Boyz:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRrMu7B1L2I

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:43 | 3199844 Bunga Bunga
Bunga Bunga's picture

To the monkey's defense, law applies to humans only.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:52 | 3199589 Ying-Yang
Ying-Yang's picture

Spank the Monkey!

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:35 | 3199314 unrulian
unrulian's picture

i've never seen a bald monkey



edit: ummm ..i...mean.....i've never seen a bald primate

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:51 | 3199579 randomdrift
randomdrift's picture

The Koran says that his kind are brothers of apes and pigs. --- I've seen a bald pig. 

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:27 | 3199768 XitSam
XitSam's picture

I didn't know Ben had a brother!

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 16:47 | 3200161 randomdrift
randomdrift's picture


There is a marked resemblance, too.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:35 | 3199315 GNWT
GNWT's picture

wait let me guess...


all the time?



Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:36 | 3199318 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Most monkeys would be smart enough to not reward banana hoarding.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:37 | 3199322 Ham-bone
Ham-bone's picture

Disagree - Ben's actions are not causing "unintended consequences"...the consequences of higher inflation and asset prices are fully intended...the ultimate hyperinflationary policies to destroy unpayable debts are also Fed policy...not unintended.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:39 | 3199332 sdmjake
sdmjake's picture


Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:59 | 3199406 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Nice dumper.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:55 | 3199395 yogibear
yogibear's picture

Which result in a Banana  Republic.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:09 | 3199440 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Fully intended, as the actions are inescapable without the regime collapsing even sooner.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:39 | 3199819 XitSam
XitSam's picture

I don't think they are unintended, they are, however, forseen as a natural result of Ben's actions, but regarded as irrelevant because they think they can save the economy before collapse. Inflation may hurt some people, but it is necessary. They have models that tell them so. 

They are wrong about this but will never admit it. Even in collapse, they will be saying, "Oh, if we had flipped that lever it would have been fine. Sorry your country was destroyed. We will do better next time. We promise."

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:15 | 3199456 centerline
centerline's picture

Exactly.  Unintended consequences are managed along the way, as long as possible.  The reality is that the Fed cannot stop the inevitable in 15 minutes.  What can be done in 15 minutes is to terminate the system (pull the plug per se).

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:36 | 3199323 101 years and c...
101 years and counting's picture

a monkey is smarter than bernanke.  eventually, the monkey will stop doing what doesnt work. 

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:40 | 3199341 Water Is Wet
Water Is Wet's picture

It's working pretty nicely for him.  He has the power to debauch the currency and he gets to sit around all day thinking of justifications for printing more money.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:25 | 3199753 Jake88
Jake88's picture

Bernanke is just like a monkey. he will never stop spanking his monkey.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:38 | 3199330 Iam Yue2
Iam Yue2's picture

Yes, and they will all follow each other on twitter, competing to see who can tweet some second hand information, slapping each other on the back, puffing chests, adopting superior air on account of their 2000 followers.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:41 | 3199333 caimen garou
caimen garou's picture

what do you mean like a monkey, he is a little trained monkey that gets a peanut for every dollar printed!

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 14:40 | 3199538 Apostate2
Apostate2's picture

Who's the organ grinder?

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:01 | 3199632 ShrNfr
ShrNfr's picture

let's not go there. bobbit comes to mind.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:26 | 3199761 Jake88
Jake88's picture

organ grinder is the guy who spanks his monkey

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:40 | 3199336 markar
markar's picture

Why is Bernanke like a monkey?


Because he sits in his cage in the Marriner Eccles bldg. flinging feces at us on a regular basis.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:45 | 3199337 Cult_of_Reason
Cult_of_Reason's picture

You are insulting the monkeys.

Contrary to Bernanke, the monkeys learn from their mistakes and do not keep doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:10 | 3199684 TWSceptic
TWSceptic's picture

Unless those aren't mistakes but deliberate choices to enrich certain people...

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 23:12 | 3201238 Hi Ho Silver
Hi Ho Silver's picture

Ever seen the monkey and cocaine testing? The monkey will keep pressing the button long after the cocaine is withheld or until he dies of overdose if it's not.

Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:46 | 3199361 1000yrdstare
1000yrdstare's picture


Wed, 01/30/2013 - 13:48 | 3199365 dot_bust
dot_bust's picture

If you hate the Fed, spread the word about this:


In December of 2013, the Federal Reserve Charter will come to an end. The monetary enslavement created by Woodrow Wilson and the Central Bankers will come to a close. In order for the Federal Reserve to retain control over the United States money supply, this charter will have to be resigned by Congress.

Read more:


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!