Early in the pandemic, Dr. Fauci said, “there’s no reason to be walking around wearing a mask.” He said masks might cause more harm than good.
In the kind of pirouette for which he’s now famous, Fauci later told us all to wear masks indoors and out. Fauci himself starting wearing two at a time. (Why not three?) His baffled boss, Joe Biden, wears them for Zoom calls – even though he’s been fully vaccinated.
As it turned out, Fauci lied about his reason for initially telling us not to wear masks. The real reason was that he wanted to save them for doctors such as himself.
Fine, Fauci didn’t want to spark mask hoarding similar to the toilet paper hoarding we saw early on. (By the way, how’s that closet full of toilet paper working out for you hoarders?) In short, they lied to us to protect us.
But lying is not the way to manage grownups. Fauci should have explained that masks are probably effective to some degree, but that for a few weeks we needed to save them for front-line health workers who were in daily contact with the virus.
Then there were the apocalyptic COVID predictions. Real scientists knew all along that COVID was very selective in its victims. It seldom struck people under 60 and rarely killed them. For young people, COVID remains less dangerous than the flu.
But we weren’t told that. Instead, as in the case of the masks, they lied in order to manipulate behavior. The behavior they wanted was isolation and lockdowns, and so they deliberately scared people.
Lying often produces collateral damage, apart from a loss of credibility. The COVID fears stoked by the establishment have been ammo for teachers’ unions, for example. On the pretense of safety, teachers refuse to work unless they get more money and less work (at which point their fear of dying apparently vanishes).
Less work and more money brings us to the topic of inflation. Democrats have pumped unprecedented taxpayer trillions into the COVID economy, largely in the form of free money for people who vote for them.
The most notorious example is the COVID unemployment benefits. Unlike traditional unemployment benefits (and contrary to what Biden believes, or says he believes) you don’t even need to seek work. Bank of America says that a person making less than $32,000 a year is better off quitting and collecting COVID benefits.
The result is that job openings are at record levels, even as hiring is sluggish. People are simply refusing to go back to work.
Biden offers a “solution.” He says businesses should offer higher wages to wean these lazy people off the unemployment teat to which they’re addicted.
He contends, Canute-like, that these higher wages – coupled with his proposed massive increase in the corporate tax rate – will not be passed along to consumers in the form of higher prices.
But they already are being passed along. Anyone who buys gas, groceries, lumber or real estate knows that prices are going through the roof. After being kept in check for a generation, inflation is roaring back.
Inflation is difficult to manage. If you’re an investor, you don’t want to be in cash because the value of that cash decreases daily. You don’t want to be in the capital markets because the treatment for runaway inflation is profit-killing high interest rates. Real estate is good, for a while, but I have a hunch that the easy gains in real estate have already been made.
Gold? Maybe, but cryptocurrency might be a game changer.
Meanwhile, they tell us not to believe our lying eyes. They say inflation won’t happen, even as it does.
But of course that’s what they have to say. Once we know inflation is back, the psychology of inflation takes hold and it spirals. People become willing to pay inflated prices today because they fear more-inflated prices tomorrow. Inflation begets more inflation.
So, to their benefit and our detriment, they lie to us about COVID inflation just as they lied about COVID masks and lied about COVID dangers to young people.
That works for only so long. The stock market this week finally recognized that printing trillions of dollars to give to people for not working causes them not to work. Investors and economists know that the wealth of the country has not increased by trillions of dollars. What has increased is an endless supply of printed money chasing a shortage of goods and services produced by a dwindled workforce.
When we had real inflation last time, in the 1980’s, it took years of painfully high interest rates and a prolonged recession to get us back to price stability. It will be even worse this time because the money over-supply and the work disincentives are much greater.
The hard left that owns the Democratic Party doesn’t recognize this. They still figure there’s such a thing as a free lunch. Or maybe they just figure that a lunch paid for later is the same as a free one.
Or maybe they do know it, and they like it for the same reason they like rioting, racial strife and pandemics – because it’s bad for America.
So, hold on to your hat. As for what to do with your money, I don’t know.