There might be worse choices to lead President Joe Biden’s fight against inflation — Vice President Kamala Harris immediately comes to mind.
But the role of Brian Deese in Biden’s new and belated “laser focus” on inflation is more proof that Sleepy Joe either doesn’t have a clue about policy, or isn’t serious about one of the most serious economic problems facing average Americans.
Deese is a lunatic in charge of the asylum. His economic policies are among the big reasons we’re suffering with 8% inflation (a stealth tax on the working class) and markets are signaling a possible recession.
Influence is growing
Worse, he shows no signs of reversing course while his power is growing. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is said to be not long for the administration, possibly gone after the midterms, for failing to see the inflation threat before it was too late.
High on the shortlist to replace her is staff-favorite Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, and maybe Gary Gensler, the hyper-ambitious and progressive Securities and Exchange Commission chair who has lefty Sen. Elizabeth Warren in his corner.
While Yellen’s situation gets sorted out, Deese, director of the president’s National Economic Council, is Biden’s inflation and economic go-to guy, I am told. My sources in DC say Deese was the main wordsmith behind a recent op-ed in The Wall Street Journal in which the president finally admitted inflation won’t be going away anytime soon. (Deese recently conceded as much on Fox News; he declined further comment).
Deese is fine as a flack or a ghostwriter for the president (he’s actually pretty good BS’ing on TV), but he shouldn’t be anywhere near setting policy for an economy approaching $25 trillion.
His résumé is far too steeped in progressive policies and politics that are at the heart of our inflationary woes.
Consider: Deese, fresh from Yale Law School, cut his teeth in government as a key economic adviser to Barack Obama, the president who famously used his skills as a community organizer in an effort to remake the US economy into something that would make Saul Alinsky proud .
Deese worked on Obama’s auto bailouts, burning his rep as a super progressive in dealing with the carmarkers.
After traveling through the administration’s budget and economic bureaucracy, he took a crack at private-sector work at BlackRock to advance a progressive investing fad known as ESG, or Environmental Social Governance.
Deese spent three years as global head of sustainable investing at the $10 trillion asset-management company, imploring money managers to screen out companies that didn’t meet strict environmental standards set by progressive influencers.
Under ESG guidelines, for example, oil companies are implored to cut back on drilling and invest in windmills — with the threat that BlackRock might divest or seek management change.
Because of BlackRock’s size, these dicts were copied by other investment firms.
The wrath of woke up
As we all know, corporate America chose to adopt ESG standards rather than face the wrath of woke investors.
It’s one reason the US is so reliant on foreign oil for our energy needs — and why gas prices were rising even before the oil market was roiled by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Another reason is that after leaving BlackRock and joining the Biden White House, Deese was among those leading the charge to implement these woke corporate dicts in national fiscal and energy policy.
Biden’s needless spending, massive new regulations, and the hurdles his White House have imposed on domestic oil production, combined with Fed money printing, created the inflationary mess, of course.
These aren’t Deese’s doing, but he is said to have had a heavy hand in each.
Now, with Yellen being sidelined, his hand is growing stronger, which is why you see him on TV so much these days.
Yet for all his TV talk about looking to fix inflation, his remedies remain more of the same: A heavy emphasis on green boondoggles, and less drilling that has resulted in higher gas prices and inflation that we all will have to just suck up and live with as the economy works through a necessary “transition.”
Over at BlackRock, Deese’s old boss, Larry Fink, has been re-thinking his firm’s ESG goals, stating that such standards are too drastic to be achieved overnight.
Inflation and social unrest are inevitable without a transition to reduce the nation’s carbon footprint that will take some time.
Good for him, but too bad for the American people.
Deese hasn’t gotten Fink’s memo, or is simply refusing to read it.