Rick Santelli Was Wrong About Everything, Colleague Impolitely Points Out

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
July 14 2014 6:11 PM

Rick Santelli Was Wrong About Everything, Colleague Impolitely Points Out

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Often loud, often wrong

Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images the New Yorker

Steve Liesman is to Rick Santelli what Moriarty was to Holmes, what Patton was to Rommel, what Angstrom Levy was/is to Invincible—a worthy opponent. The Liesman/Santelli tussles happen regularly on the shoutcentric financial channel CNBC, but today's went more viral than most. You can see why, as Santelli grows increasingly agitated and the traders behind him increasingly confused by this Liesman bill of particulars.

It's impossible for you to have been more wrong, Rick. Your call for inflation, the destruction of the dollar, the failure of the US economy to rebound. Rick, it’s impossible for you to have been more wrong. Every single bit of advice you gave would have lost people money, Rick. Lost people money, Rick. Every single bit of advice. There is no piece of advice that you've given that's worked, Rick. There is no piece of advice that you've given that's worked, Rick. Not a single one. Not a single one, Rick. The higher interest rates never came, the inability of the U.S. to sell bonds never happened, the dollar never crashed, Rick. There isn’t a single one that’s worked for you.
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Santelli's response was basically that the current slow recovery was no recovery at all—a Chicago Cubs strategy. But it's true, the accidental Prometheus of neo-libertarianism has been wrong all kinds of ways on the inflation threat. If you took Santelli's panicky advice and traded your bonds for gold, you can hardly afford a bunk in Galt's Gulch anymore. 

In years past, I would have relied on my colleague Matthew Yglesias to explain why Santelli has been so consistently wrong. But doing so now requires a link to Vox—which, like Slate, lacks an army of brightly shirted hype men yelling and clapping whenever we argue over something.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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