Is Inflation Killing the American Dream? | Eastern North Carolina Now

    Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the The Daily Wire. The author of this post is Paige Terryberry.

  • Inflation is more than just an expensive trip to the grocery store or gas pump
  • Workers sacrifice goals and dreams to combat the immediate peril of skyrocketing prices
  • Inflation destroys precious savings and earnings - the foundation of anyone building their American dream - which discourages workers and makes the government's offer to "help" more tempting

    The American dream says that anyone who works hard can be successful. The hallmark of this dream is that it is not dependent on where you start. Anyone wanting to improve their living standard can do so. But inflation is a wrecking ball to today's American dream builders.

    The massive increase in the money supply over the past couple of years caused today's record inflation. This deficit spending and money printing coupled with decades of unaccountable government spending and careless additions to the national debt has cemented our current plight.

    Everyone is feeling the squeeze. But American dream builders should be most outraged by inflation. These individuals are working hard to grow a nest egg and maintain control over their lives and future. The American dreamer is crippled by inflation, which brings many of them to personal stagnation through constant, helpless reliance on government.

    For dream builders, inflation is much more than just an expensive trip to the grocery store and gas pump. Inflation causes these individuals and families to live in crisis mode - forcing them to prioritize the immediate over the long term when their focus had been on building their futures. Losing control of their futures affects more than just their wallets. Individuals become discouraged and may forgo their dreams altogether. Finally, inflation can cripple dreamers, leaving them no choice but to remain mired in place, relying on government assistance.

    Inflation means crisis mode

    Inflation eats away at savings and encourages immediate spending to stay afloat.

    In the year before the pandemic and the reckless spending that ensued, the personal savings rate - measured as personal savings as a percentage of disposable personal income - ranged from 7.0 to 8.8 percent. Since January of 2022, the personal savings rate has remained below 6.0 percent.

    During times of inflation, American dreamers are forced to live myopically. Saving for the future becomes wishful thinking as families struggle to keep food on the table. Perhaps even worse is the fact that any hard-earned savings are devalued. Families trying to get ahead are chasing higher prices they can no longer afford. Financial goals may be met on paper - but the home, car, or other investment goal may very well be pushed out of reach.

    Eventually inflation will cripple the productive. Without savings and capital, an economy cannot grow.

    Household debt is on the rise, too, and consumers will see higher interest payments as a result of inflation, prompting more to default on credit cards, auto loans, or home mortgages.

    The American dream works when people can keep their hard-earned money. Inflation, however, means their dollar does not go as far. They must spend more for the same goods and services, leaving less or no money for savings toward their dream. Inflation's evil is more harmful than just expensive grocery runs - it shackles dreamers to the status quo, leaving them unable to move forward and prosper.

    Forgo control

    The American dreamer is forward thinking. Every decision made is to prepare for a better future. Yet inflation undoes the work of even the frugal dreamer.

    A worker can diligently follow the "success sequence" - get a job, work hard, and save - but inflationary pressures rob a worker on their path to prosperity.

    In the same way that a tax cut gives you more control over your own future, a tax increase takes away control. Inflation behaves like a regressive tax increase without transparency.

    Losing control of one's future is dangerous to workers and their families. When it happens across the board as a result of inflation, the overall economy is in peril.

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, overall prices are now 9.1% higher than they were last year. Household staples like gas, electricity, and groceries are rising in price even faster. A 9.1% pay cut is detrimental to anyone. The unlegislated tax of inflation ravages the American dream, or at best, punts it further into the future. Dreamers become discouraged by their lack of control to rebuild.

    And when one's wealth decreases, the government's offer to "help" becomes more tempting.

    Encouraging reliance on government

    During bouts of inflation, workers struggle to save for the future. As they lose control of their goals and ambitions, the government steps in to offer solutions. Big Government is hardly altruistic, since government spending caused inflation in the first place. Instead, workers who have cast aside their American dream end up being held captive by government assistance. This dependency is the antithesis of the American dream.

    Therein lies the dangerous cycle of Big Government. The problem of bureaucrats amassing power threatens the American dream and addicts people to government dependency.

    If the government decides to "level the playing field" and redistribute the wealth, the American dream dies. The American dream cannot flourish in a communal society.

    Of course, this is not how Big Government is advertised. Big Government says: "Tax the rich." "Punish the successful." "You can't get what they have on your own, so we'll give it to you for 'free.'" Even its advocates often fail to realize what they are giving up as they succumb to Big Government. Big Government amasses incredible power to infringe on individuals' rights. It derails American dreams and pats itself on the back for doling out shoddier versions.

    In a communal society, envy makes sense. In a zero-sum world, if someone has more than you, they advantaged themselves by exploiting others. But this is not the case in a market society, and the world is not zero-sum. Success depends not on the exploitation of others but instead on risk-taking, ingenuity, investment, hard work, and providing value to others that they willingly pay for. The market economy left the primitive, communal economy behind and allowed for massive wealth creation and the largest decrease in poverty in world history.

    Big Government would have the American dreamer forget this history.

Inarguably, the policies of the Democrats in congress and Joe Biden as the Executive is plunging the United States into a recession, if we are not already there; a recession that was completely avoidable. Will abrupt changes in policies occur in time?
  Yes, the Democrats have a bold plan, yet to be revealed, to save us.
  No, there will have to be a complete undoing of the damage done by these Democrats.
  I can't do simple math, so how am I to understand the concept of basic economics.
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