Rep. Susie Lee’s biggest worry about inflation isn’t rising prices. It’s people worrying about it.
“The media coverage on inflation begets inflation,” Lee said this month during a video fundraiser obtained by the Review-Journal. “The biggest worry about inflation is people start to fear inflation. It just is like a snowball effect.”
That sentiment would come as a surprise to families wondering how they’re going to afford groceries, clothing and gasoline this month. They didn’t need a press report to notice that their money isn’t going as far as it used to.
Labor Department economists have noticed, too. The consumer price index is up 6.8 percent over the past year. That’s the highest level in nearly 40 years. They identified price increases as the source of inflation, not the media’s coverage of those prices increases.
Lee blamed higher prices on supply chain disruptions and the fact that “no one was doing anything last year.” She also said Federal Reserve officials are “the people who control inflation.”
Lee is right that the causes of inflation are multifaceted, but President Joe Biden and Congress bear some responsibility. It turns out killing the Keystone Pipeline and paying people not to work weren’t great ways to fight higher prices.
But Lee is unrepentant. “I acknowledge that things are getting expensive, but I’m not going to apologize for it,” she said.
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