Alan Greenspan defended his record as chairman of the Federal Reserve in responding to brutal reviews of his new book, The Map and the Territory.
Reviewers compared Greenspan to the comically nearsighted Mr. Magoo character and said he glided like Fred Astaire past mistakes of his own making.
But Greenspan, who’s blamed for helping to cause the financial meltdown that came two years after stepping down as fed chairman, said criticism came with the job.
“I am in the business where, Harry Truman once said, ‘If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen,’” Greenspan said on Bloomberg Television’s “In The Loop.”
But Greenspan also complained that much of the criticism was unfair.
“I apologize for something I did wrong, and I do apologize. I don’t apologize,” Greenspan said. “I was doing the best I can. The arguments, some of which are quite accurate, is I missed certain forecasts, you don’t apologize for that. Do you? I don’t.”
He said he was human, and so not omniscient.
“I cannot see beyond the horizon any more than anyone else can,” Greenspan said. “Now to apologize for not being Superman, I just refuse to do that because that never entered my mind.”
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