Your paycheck has lost 16% of its value since Biden took office
The top two Republican presidential candidates are all but ignoring it, and Democrats are pretending it doesn’t exist: Namely, the fact that Americans are still appalled at the state of the economy. In an attempt to put lipstick on a pig, President Joe Biden has bragged about “Bidenomics,” and former President Donald Trump and Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) are busier peddling protectionism than focusing on the single most important issue to voters, inflation.
Let us put the dollars and cents into terms simple enough that even our political elites can understand. Prices are up 16% from when Biden took office, and your paycheck has lost 16% unless you’ve gotten a raise since then. The numbers are even more egregious when you break them down by the categories on which the least privileged spend a disproportionate amount of their incomes.
The consumer price index specifically for food is up 19% since January 2021, and electricity prices are up 23%. Used car prices are up a staggering 30%, and car repairs cost 23% more than two years ago.
Rent is in line with the overall CPI basket, with prices up 16%. But good luck trying to graduate to home ownership. To combat this ruinous degradation of the greenback, the Federal Reserve’s interest rate hikes have resulted in the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate topping 7%.
Even if the Fed does manage to pull off a soft landing, as Biden and banks are now boasting is likely, the Fed cannot, or more importantly, will not, allow disinflation to turn into deflation, and the rest of the government will continue to fight it. Biden has adopted an explicitly inflationary monetary policy, forcing Jerome Powell to slam the brakes harder than he would have otherwise, and still, consumers are balancing a double-digit loss of annual income, compounded over time, while borrowing costs for home ownership, entrepreneurship, and education skyrocket. It is the worst of both words, and it is all thanks to Washington. Voters are warning that this election, more than ever, is still about the economy, stupid. Politicians ignore them at their peril.