Remember last year when Twitter users relentlessly mocked the White House for letting Americans know their 4th of July barbecue would cost a whopping 16 cents less than the year before? At the time, the slight prick of rising prices was beginning to rear its head, and the official White House Twitter account attempted to put any concerns to bed with this puntastic tweet:
Planning a cookout this year? Ketchup on the news. According to the Farm Bureau, the cost of a 4th of July BBQ is down from last year. It’s a fact you must-hear(d). Hot dog, the Biden economic plan is working. And that’s something we can all relish. pic.twitter.com/7h9qLauIbC
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) July 1, 2021
Looking back at that tweet borders on infuriating. The direction the economy was taking at that point was clear. When we talk to our grandchildren about the summer of 2021, we may have to call it the good old days. According to the Farm Bureau:
U.S. consumers will pay $69.68 for their favorite Independence Day cookout foods, including cheeseburgers, pork chops, chicken breasts, homemade potato salad, strawberries and ice cream, based on a new American Farm Bureau Federation marketbasket survey.
The average cost of a summer cookout for 10 people is $69.68, which breaks down to less than $7 per person. The overall cost for the cookout is up 17% or about $10 from last year, a result of ongoing supply chain disruptions, inflation and the war in Ukraine.
Not 17 cents, 17%. And I don’t know about you, but for me, no summer barbecue is complete without deviled eggs. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, prices for eggs are 16.20% higher in 2022 than in 2021. There is no telling when the inflationary trend will end. It might not be a bad idea to grab Tom Turkey now and stick him in the freezer. There is no telling what the cost of your Thanksgiving centerpiece will be by November.
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Calculating food costs does not consider the increased cost of going anywhere to celebrate with friends and family. As of May, the national average price for a gallon of gas increased 48.7% year over year. As of June 11, the weekly spending on gasoline rose to $110. If you have to travel long distances to see family for Thanksgiving or Christmas, airline fares have already surged nearly 40%.
So this all begs the question: when will the crushing inflation end? At the NATO summit in Spain, a reporter asked Biden how long Americans could expect to pay a premium for fuel because of the war in Ukraine. His response was, “As long as it takes.” The obvious flaw in that question is that not all of the increase is due to Putin’s invasion. It is driven more by the Biden administration’s green energy dreams, with price increases evident before the Russian Army set foot in Ukraine.
If you don’t believe Biden, his Economic Council Director Brian Deese could not have been clearer. In a CNN interview after Biden’s comments, the anchor asked Deese to respond to families who can’t afford to pay $4.85 a gallon for months, if not years on end. “What you heard from the president today was a clear articulation of the stakes about the future of the liberal world order. And we have to stand firm.”
So you get to go broke to preserve the borders of a corrupt oligarchy in eastern Europe, while the southern border of the U.S. may as well have a flashing neon arrow with a sign that says “Cross Here” at all possible entrances. And Democrats wonder why Biden’s approval is under 40% on the RCP average and their electoral future looks bleak.
The price of energy underlies the cost of everything else. The Biden administration refuses to do what is required to increase supply. Even French President Emmanuel Macron knows America is not drilling enough and called Biden out on a hot mic. Add that to the increased fertilizer cost because Russia and Ukraine are major world producers, and by December, an orange may once again become a fancy stocking stuffer. And black-eyed peas, also called Hoppin’ John, could be all that is on the table on New Year’s Day if the Biden administration doesn’t start putting Americans first.