GIGOT: -- which assets are going to increase. that included energy prices, which flowed into food prices commodities in general which affected consumer purchasing power and well-being, and raised costs for business. that has a countervailing effect on whatever good feeling you get in the stock market.
HENNINGER: Well, absolutely, Paul, but this -- you know, I'm a little bit heated up on this subject of Bernanke.
Look, we're sitting here talking about the entire American economy, and Ben Bernanke taking responsibility for it while the president of the United States says, "None of this has been my fault." Well, we just saw the photo of Ben Bernanke with the American flag. Why don't we put him in the Oval Office --
-- and get the guy who is there out, because the guy who is running the Federal Reserve clearly seems to be running the country.
GIGOT: Bernanke was at pains, Mary, to say at his press conference this week, look, this is not partisan, we just really believe the economy needs this help. It is a -- I give Bernanke the benefit of the doubt on the political motivation. But there's no question that this is a tacit admission that everything they've done for four years hasn't helped, and the economy still stinks.
O'GRADY: I felt a little sorry for him because when he said it's no panacea, and it almost seemed like he was apologizing and saying, look, I'm cornered, there's nothing else I can do because Washington won't do it.
GIGOT: So we're going -- we're going to try this.
All right, we have to take one more break. When we come back, "Hits and Misses" of the week.
GIGOT: Time now for "Hits and Misses" of the week.
Kim, first to you.
STRASSEL: A hit to Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett and his legal team for this week going to the matt again over their voter I.D. law, defending it in front of the state supreme court. Pennsylvania, like a lot of states trying to clean up their rampant voter fraud, has been under assault by civil liberties groups and also by Attorney General Eric Holder whose Justice Department, in an attempt to intimidate Pennsylvania and also foment racial discord before the election, has launched an inquiry into the Pennsylvania law. If Mr. Corbett manages to pull this off this week, we'll be one step closer to fairer elections.
GIGOT: OK, Kim.
HENNINGER: Well, Paul, and apparent miss to Apple's new iPhone 5 which was introduced this week, and criticized as boring because it doesn't have the latest stuff, such as Touch to Share, which means two Smartphones touch each other and pictures pass between them.
Or Face Unlock, which means you just look at the phone and it unlocks the password.
You know, I'm here to tell you, if even Apple can't keep up these days, I somehow feel a little bit better about the way things are out there.
All right, Mary?
O'GRADY: Paul, this is a hit for Pope Benedict who, despite the violence in the Middle East, stuck with his plan to go to Lebanon this weekend. His pilgrimage is technically a peace pilgrimage but he's also drawing attention t the fact that Christians are being persecuted in the Middle East in numbers that we haven't seen in modern history.
GIGOT: An important message. And I hope he stays safe.
KAMINSKI: Paul, there is a most divisive debate in American sports, but we're going to settle it right here.
The Washington Nationals were absolutely right to shutdown phenom pitcher, Stephen Strasburg. Coming off Tommy John surgery, the young pitcher had not pitched many innings last year. They put in a limit on innings this year. He hit it earlier this week and the Nationals put him down. It shows that they're committed to a long-term investment in a great player. It's a message to young players that it continually cares. And it shows there's long-term thinking in America still.
GIGOT: All right.
And that's it for this week's show. Thanks to our panel and all of you for watching. I'm Paul Gigot. We hope to see you right here next week.
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