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Prince Hamnanke’s soliloquy before Jackson Hole
To print, or not to print: that is the question: Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slumps and fallows of outrageous recession, or to make policy against a sea of economic troubles, and by buying Treasury bonds end them? To stimulate: to print; No more waiting; and by a stimulus to say we end the heart-ache and the thousand demand side shocks that producers are heir to, ’tis a consummation devoutly to be wish’d. To stimulate, to print; To print: perchance to create hyperinflation: ay, there’s the rub; For in that stimulus of printing what inflation may come when we have shuffled off this mortal liquidity trap, must give us pause: there’s the respect that makes calamity of so long downturn; For who would bear the quips and scorns of the press, the Austrians’ wrong, the proud Krugman’s contumely, the pangs of despised monetary policy, the recovery’s delay, the pressure of office and the spurns that patient merit of the unworthy takes, when he himself might his career make with a bare helicopter dump? Who would stagnation bear, to lie and sweat under intense Congessional scrutiny, but that the dread of something after stimulus, the undiscover’d country from whose bourn no central banker except Gideon Gono returns, puzzles the will and makes us rather bear those ills we have than fly to others that we know not of? Thus conscience does make cowards of us central bankers; And thus the native hue of resolution is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of endless academic debates, and monetary interventions of great pith and moment with this regard their currents turn awry, and lose the name of action!