• What if Tony Soprano (search) ran the Federal Reserve? I suspect it would be a very different Fed.

    Maybe it was just gleaning the meaning behind the latest fed powwow and "doublespeak" that found me clamoring for someone who could really "speak" directly, forcefully and brutally.

    Frankly I'm sick and tired of playing verbal chicken entrails and tealeaves with everything out of Al and his pals.

    They look for nuances. I'm looking for clarity.

    Al hints at pricing pressures building. Tony would point to your neighborhood gas station and say they're infuriating.

    Al would say we have to be vigilant. Tony would say "I have to be honest... if this inflation nonsense keeps up, I'm gonna knock it upside the head."

    Al would hint at raising rates. Tony would just raise them.

    Al would fear alarming the markets if he is too clear. Tony would fear alarming the markets if he is not.

    Al would leave you guessing where he stood. Tony would leave no doubts where "you" stood.

    Al likes adjectives and adverbs. Tony doesn't know adjectives and adverbs unless they come with an "F" in front of them.

    Al likes to be admired. Tony likes to be feared.

    Al likes to keep the economy humming by not rocking the boat. Tony keeps it humming precisely because he does rock the boat.

    Al favors getting in your head. Tony's more in your face.

    Sometimes I think there's something to be said for "saying" something than "hinting" something.

    Sometimes I think we could all benefit from the boss who says you stink, than the boss who says your work is not up to acceptable standards.

    Sometimes we need a boss to "be" the boss.

    I more prize the guy who lets me know where to get off in no uncertain terms, than the diplomatic phony who masks his contempt in uncertain language.

    Elitists -- and probably those afraid of getting bumped off -- wouldn't welcome Tony at the Fed because he's kind of direct. I think half the problems in the world today are created precisely because the guy who's there now is not.

    And it's a bada-shame!

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