Peter over at Bayou Renaissance Man says that readers claim inflation isn’t here. Let me show you how it sneaks up on you. A Denny’s commercial from 1997:

Note that one of those breakfasts was this one:

2 strips of bacon, two link sausages, two eggs, and two pancakes. This is the breakfast that Denny’s calls the “Original Grand Slam.” For $1.99.

How much is this breakfast now? $9.29, or 467% more than it was 24 years ago. That works out to an annual inflation rate of 6.7%. The published rates for that period were anything from negative 0.2 all the way to 3.0. The official inflation rates say that this breakfast should only cost $3.28 today.

When I was in high school nearly 40 years ago, I remember being able to go to McDonald’s and eat my fill for less than $4. A Big Mac was only $1.09. Krystal Hamburgers were 25 cents. Compare them to today’s prices.

It isn’t just food. In 1999, you could purchase gasoline for less than $1 a gallon. The hit is even larger than that- because in 2005, Congress mandated that all gasoline be diluted with alcohol.

But wages haven’t kept pace. In 2000, the starting pay for a Paramedic right out of school was $14 an hour. Today, that same new paramedic would start at – $13 an hour.

Prices have been increasing at a rate of 6 to 7 percent per year, while wages have remained static.

Categories: Economy


Big Country · April 30, 2021 at 11:31 am

2006 during a ‘break’ from Contracting, went to work for Dell at a call-center… It was when Dell brought the help desk back from India. Was paid $17 an hour… great wages at the time.

Fast forward to 2011… Post War, Before Affy but after Iraq. Same place, same job. Rehired.

$12.50 an hour “…and be thankful we’re giving you that much more. Your co–workers are making $11.50!”

Needless to say, I was in Afghanistan within a few months after…

Why · April 30, 2021 at 12:34 pm

Dang! In 1984, I was making $5.50/hr as a Paramedic.

Therefore · April 30, 2021 at 1:41 pm

For a long time the federal government kept an index which was the cost of a basket of food for a family of four. It included meat, bread, fruit vegetables, a good representative of what a family ate.

By looking at the cost of that basket and the median income you had a good idea of what inflation was doing to purchase power.

During the worse of the depression of Obama, people started looking at that index. It was clear that the Obama depression was having huge impact on average Americans.

The next time that index was published, amazingly the index showed incredible, unbelievable improvement. O had saved us!

Except that when you look deeper you find that the had changed the contents of that basket. Seems people weren’t buying steaks anymore. So steak was replaced with 85% ground beef.

Look up the “big mac index” cool measurement of value vs cost

Anonymous · April 30, 2021 at 3:19 pm

It’s worse than that. Consider all the technological innovation made in the 24 years between 1997 and 2021, which cheapens the logistics of getting wheat and pig to you. Did this make staples like milk, butter, pancake mix, and bacon 3% cheaper each year? In a world without currency inflation and runaway regulation that breakfast should cost $1.99/(1.03^24) = $0.98 today. Which means a (9.29/0.98)^(1/24) = 1.098246 = 9.8% annual increase in cost of living, not 6.7%. is free and can raise to fractional powers.

Anonymous · April 30, 2021 at 4:24 pm

“The way to crush the bourgeoisie [middle class] is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation.”

— Attributed to Lenin, but could be fake. Doesn’t matter; the truth of a statement doesn’t depend on who speaks it.

The class interest of the ruling class is to perpetuate itself. Thus, the US Founding Lawyers created a government to sell Whites into debt slavery, preventing their competition with the elites. However, the BS the elites promote in popular culture (“We the people”) infects the elites’ children, who learn fake economics instead of kingsmanship. Then about every 200 years the upper middle class displaces the discombobulated ruling class, just as Orwell described in 1984.

The middle class is actually nearly independently wealthy, meaning they only need to work a few hours a week to earn a living.

    21stCenturyCassandra · May 2, 2021 at 2:16 am

    “The middle class is actively independently wealthy.” Right! Can the rest of the class have some of what you are smoking? It must be some really good “stuff”.

      Divemedic · May 2, 2021 at 7:08 am

      Actually, I would agree with that, if the only goal is earning a living- what is needed to survive. The middle class spends most of their money on baubles and not on living expenses.

Anonymous · April 30, 2021 at 8:39 pm

1967 or 1968, I remember going with my Dad to buy gasoline. 26 cents per gallon. I shit ye not.

SiG · May 4, 2021 at 8:47 pm

Linked back from my place, May 4th.

    Divemedic · May 5, 2021 at 6:42 am


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