After reading the Wall Street Journal’s editorial against confirming President Biden’s nominee to head the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC):
Ms. Omarova advocates central political control of capital, credit and wages, and she has praised the Soviet-era economic system. Are her own words off-limits to scrutiny?
Ms. Omarova wants to put an “‘end to banking’ as we know it”—again, her words—and transfer private banking functions to the Federal Reserve, where accounts would “fully replace” private bank deposits. The Fed would control “systemically important prices” for fuel, food, raw materials, metals, natural resources, home prices and wages.
She says the Fed should be remade into what she calls “The People’s Ledger.” By “the people” she means progressive elites like her. She calls for “reimagining” the role of central banks “as the ultimate public platform for generating, modulating, and allocating financial resources in a modern economy.”
A Washington Post columnist hails her as a “trenchant and informed critic of the current financial system” and praises her “innovative ideas about how to reform banking” and “tough approach to banking regulation.” Her ideas were innovative—circa Moscow, 1918.
I sought a case for the defense. Most of the defenses were either appeals to false authority or examples of the burden of proof fallacy. The best I found was this one at CoinDesk by Raúl Carrillo:
Now, Omarova has recognized the power of financial innovation to improve the quality of our lives. She acknowledges the U.S. lacks a unified strategy for fintech regulation and does not profess to have all the answers. She argues our payment and banking systems need to be more inclusive of low-income households and marginalized communities, goals the new industries say they respect. She has even emphasized the importance of data security and privacy, and deftly highlighted that opinions on these matters are not uniform among innovators.
Omarova takes a serious, long-term, big-picture attitude toward the entire financial system in favor of regulatory principles rather than any single industry’s agenda. She has long been a vocal critic of traditional finance and the largest, most entrenched players within it. And, she has argued the public interest is not served by allowing Facebook to issue its own money or Rakuten, the “Amazon of Japan,” to own a bank.
Should Dr. Omarova be confirmed? Why did President Biden nominate her?