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Bernanke, other officials among TIME's top people

By Ed O'Keefe

TIME Magazine named Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke its "Person of the Year" on Wednesday, capping a remarkable year for the nation's top banker.

The magazine's timing couldn't be better, since the Senate Banking Committee will likely clear him today for another four-year term.

"He is not...a typical Beltway power broker," writes TIME's Michael Grunwald. "He's shy. He doesn't do the D.C. dinner-party circuit; he prefers to eat at home with his wife, who still makes him do the dishes and take out the trash. Then they do crosswords or read. Because Ben Bernanke is a nerd."

The TIME honor caps a year of aggressive media outreach by Bernanke in an effort to save his job and ensure the continued relevance of the central bank. In March, he gave the first TV interview by a sitting Fed chair to "60 Minutes" and in July he took direct questions from Americans during a PBS town hall meeting.

In addition to Bernanke's honor, several other government officials earned honorable mentions from TIME:

President Barack Obama: "Under his guidance, the banks returned to stabilization, the economy began to grow again, and the American auto industry did not evaporate."

White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel: "His hallmark, beyond the salty language, has been a willingness to embrace the realities of legislative compromise."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi: "She has consolidated more power than any other Speaker in modern history, scholars of the office believe."

Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal: "McChrystal's assessment and his initial actions in Afghanistan demonstrated a sensitivity that his critics have not credited."

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor: "She was sworn in on Aug. 8, becoming the first Hispanic to serve on the nation's highest court, and provided one of TIME's buzzwords of 2009: 'wise Latina.'"

CDC Director Thomas Frieden: "He made the controversial call in October to release the long-awaited H1N1 influenza vaccine in small batches as soon as they rolled off production lines."

Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine): "These days, when she leans into a microphone to speak, ears perk up instantly."

Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.): "Heckling a popular new Commander in Chief at a rare joint session of Congress has proved to have its perils and its benefits."

Government officials have topped several other magazine lists this year, including Foreign Policy's "Top Global Thinkers" and Forbes Magazine's "100 Most Powerful Women."

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below

By Ed O'Keefe  | December 16, 2009; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  Miscellaneous  
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Looks like Time is about as credible as the Nobel Peace Prize committee.


Posted by: cschotta1 | December 16, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: huangzhixian171 | December 16, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

By nominating Ben Shalom Bernanke as Man of the Year Time Mag finally pays homage to the true and real Chief Executive of the US.

Thats according to Baron M. A. Rothschild (1744-1812) who its claimed used to boast that he was "the actual ruler of the Empire on which the sun never sets".

He was quoted as stating, "give me control over a nation's currency and I care not who makes the laws".

Its appropriate then to call B.S. Bernanke "you de man".

Posted by: omop | December 16, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Up is down.

This goes well with the current trend of rewarding failure on a grand scale.

Nardelli at Home Depot, Brownie and the presidential medal, etc.

Posted by: BDAtlanta | December 16, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

For all the people that think he doesn't deserve it ... come on people --- we just don't have to be mean this holiday season.

The very fact the camp is split ... in a way for a Fed Chief that is good -- not everyone needs to like the Fed Chief otherwise we'd be running a "happy-money" policy ... to many it looks like that way today.

Posted by: free_np | December 16, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

@cschotta1: Perhaps the Republibamas have NO IDEA HOW TO RUN A GOVERNMENT?????

Posted by: bs2004 | December 16, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

TIME magazine has become a milk-toast, mushy left-of-center rag that simply regurgitates the evening TV news in paper format.

No wonder their readership is steadily dropping and they are on the edge of bankruptcy.

Posted by: pgr88 | December 16, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for reminding me why I don't read and WILL NEVER subscibe to Time Magazine.

Posted by: Impeachbush99 | December 16, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: ItsOver2 | December 16, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

At first glance, I thought this was a joke or, maybe, something from The Onion.

It's funny how many people have been fooled into thinking that the Fed is part of the government or that the chairman of the Federal Reserve somehow deserves to be honored.

Abolish the Fed!

Posted by: John991 | December 16, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

you old people and your magazines crack me up.

Bernanke is top what? top "something-for-nothing" free lunch keynesian?

Posted by: millionea7 | December 16, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

And, in hell, they're having quit a celebration over one of their own joining that elite crowd.....

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 16, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse


Ben deserves it, after suffering through a year of second guessing by ex-druggie Larry Kudlow and a whole raft of arm chair economists (despite the fact that our economy has performed admirably after the shock of 2008).

Go Ben! Take a good stiff belt of scotch, and then go take a leak on Kudlow's car, for good measure!

Posted by: trenda | December 16, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Bernanke in 2006 july raised the interest rates to surpising 6.75%..Why??..So that he can crush the middle class who took the subprime mortgages.!!...2)George Bush economic team leader Paulson knew that 60% of Americans applied for subprime mortgages, and he knew that with raising the FEd interest rates those poor people will start paying 12% instead of 3%...Its not the same if a nice family of working people pays 700$ a month or 2500$ when they raised those rates..THis is not possible to be payed!!..3)The makers of this crisis(neocon americans or liberal radicals) wanted with this crisis actually to hurt the rising economic super powers like China,Russia,Brazil,India,Iran who were getting a lot of money from oil...But they fooled them selfs because the nation who is hurt the most is USA...It is still questionable why did Bernanke rased the interest rates so high to 6.75 in 2006..That is too high for any nation to handle..or they knew what was going to happen..I am sorry that they blamed old fed chairman Greenspan who retired in 2005...that is outrageous...He was realy good chairman for 18 years ,and he never had any problem like this...I think that Bernanke is a fool and he should get fired!!

Posted by: kendreik | December 16, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Bernanke chosen by Bushole.


Posted by: kkrimmer | December 16, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

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