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February 4, 2011 - Jodelle Greiner
Inflation is a fact of life, but what people don’t seem to understand is there is only so much money to go around.
When I moved to Texas nearly 20 years ago, I found an apartment for $250. I was making less than I am now. (With a college degree, I’m embarrassed to admit how little I make; let’s just say journalism is not a well-paying profession.) Even so, I was able to pay all my bills and have some left over for extras like magazines. I had two or three subscriptions and bought three or four other magazines some months.
Now I’m paying about double that for rent, gas has gone up considerably and food is more expensive, as well. I don’t buy nearly the number of magazines I used to; I have only one subscription and at times seriously consider dropping that one. I buy two or three issues of other magazines a year, instead of a month.
That’s just one example of how my spending habits have changed, but I’m sure others have had to make similar choices, especially in the recent economic downturn.
When people on a limited income have to pay more and more for the basics such as rent (mortgage), car payments, electricity, food and gas, they have less money to pay for other extras like movies, electronic toys, brand-new cars and all these other things that manufacturers want us to buy.
If all that people can afford is the basics, how are they going to purchase all these other things that economists say we need to buy to kick-start the economy and get out of this recession?
I’m not sure where it starts — sort of like the chicken and the egg philosophy — employers say their workers demand more money, so they have to raise their prices; the workers say they need more money because things keep costing more.
Why is stuff so expensive? Is it because the products to make it are so expensive? Is it the labor involved? Is it the middle man marking it up? Is it businesses wanting to make more and more, quicker and quicker?
We hear about these businessmen who have millions and millions of dollars; oil executives who rake in hundreds of millions annually after they retire; CEOs who own multiple homes worth several million dollars each — and they file for bankruptcy or they’re arrested for scams they’ve tried so they can make more money. Where is the money coming from? Us. And they keep wanting us, the general public, to pay them more and more and more. How much is enough?
Somebody better wise up because the price of things can’t keep going up. The public is going to rebel and demand changes.
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