Tucker: Real inflation is significantly worse than even the boldest headlines
Mainstream media outlets and Democrats can no longer ignore that inflation, one of the most terrifying economic events that can hit a country, is bad and getting worse. What's most disturbing, though, is that the headlines seriously understate what's really going on. Tucker Carlson, in a monologue that deserves wider attention than it received, reminds us that the feds changed their consumer price metrics in a way intended to obscure that inflation is actually worse than it was 40 years ago.
Although I was a teen during inflation's peak years in the mid-to-late 1970s, I got a front-row seat for watching how financially disastrous it was for lower-income people and retirees. My dad was a schoolteacher in a poor school district. Having started off the 1970s with a very low salary, over the next decade, his raises never kept up with inflation. For that reason, to keep paying the bills, he did private tutoring during the school year — six to seven hours a day, seven days a week, in addition to his full classroom work. During the summer, he taught summer school and continued the punishing tutoring schedule.
My grandmother, who had once been a wealthy woman, was unable to help. Foolishly, she'd never invested in real estate but, instead, chose the convenience of renting. Thanks to inflation, she died a poor woman. Had she lived another half-year, she would have been unable to pay her rent.
So when I see the AP admit that inflation is real and extreme, that means something to me:
Prices for U.S. consumers jumped 6.8% in November compared with a year earlier as surging costs for food, energy, housing and other items left Americans enduring their highest annual inflation rate in 39 years.
The Labor Department also reported Friday that prices rose 0.8% from October to November — a substantial increase, though slightly less than 0.9% increase from September to October.
Inflation has been inflicting a heavy burden on consumers, especially lower-income households and particularly for everyday necessities. It has also negated the higher wages many workers have received, complicated the Federal Reserve's plans to reduce its aid for the economy and coincided with flagging public support for President Joe Biden, who has been taking steps to try to ease inflation pressures.
Even this rare burst of actual news from the AP, though, is a lie, since the government no longer calculates inflation as it did during the 1970s and 1980s. In a compelling monologue, Tucker Carlson explains to Americans that we're facing an inflationary rate that's significantly more severe than it was a few decades ago:
Tucker walks viewers through the core changes to the Consumer Price Index and the gaslighting in which Democrats are engaging but the real kicker comes when he points out how specific prices in ordinary goods have increased dramatically:
In the last year, the price of a used car, for example, is going up by more than 30%. Beef prices have risen by 21%. Crude oil up 55%. Dimensional lumber, 35%. Wheat, 37%. Sugar, 33%. Corn, 39%. Palm Oil, 43%. Do you drink coffee in the morning, ever? Oh, too bad. The price of coffee has risen 108% in the last year. Do you like breakfast cereal? Oh, sorry. Oats are up 114%.
And those are just the numbers you see on the label at the grocery store. In addition to conventional inflation, consumers also face widespread shrinkflation. That's an informal term that economists use for the stealth shrinking of consumer products. So companies sell you less for the same price. Have you bought a Snickers bar recently? If it seems a lot smaller than it used to, that's because it is.
For me, the only good thing to come out of all of this is that my beloved Häagen-Dazs chocolate ice cream has finally priced itself out of my reach. I miss it terribly, but my overall health is probably better without it in my life.
Despite the ditzy good cheer that Democrats, from Biden on down, are showing about inflation's "transitory" nature, Steve Rattner, who was counselor to the Treasury secretary during the Obama administration, is more honest and less sanguine:
I think you have to recognize it's a problem that was not created in two months, it was a problem created over the last two years. And so, it's going to take multiple years, certainly, to work it out. I, in no way, want to predict that we're going back to where we were in the late 70s, but I was sitting in the Washington Bureau of The New York Times when Paul Volcker announced his new inflation policy and I watched all that happen. And it took multiple, multiple years and a terrible recession to get it out of the system. So, it is going to be painful. And it's going to be painful for growth. It's going to be painful for jobs. And we do have an election coming next year, which is going to be complicated.
Biden's appalling poll numbers show that Americans understand that this is all the fault of Biden's policies, everything from shutting down the Keystone pipeline to printing money like Weimar Deutschmarks (another inflationary disaster my father experienced when he was a child), to continuing to use COVID as a cudgel against the middle and working classes. However, we're stuck with Biden for another three years, and his fealty to China and Russia will only grow during that time. Rattner is right that there are dark days ahead.
Image: Tucker Carlson. YouTube screen grab.
To comment, you can find the MeWe post for this article here.