The Most Unwelcome Thanksgiving Guest…
- BY Sarah Coffey
Inflation is the most unwelcome guest at this year’s Thanksgiving dinner.
2022 blows last year’s most-expensive-in-history turkey dinner record out of the water.
Thanks to the Biden administration’s policies, families across the country are dealing with sky-high prices as we enter the holiday season. In states like Utah and Colorado, inflation is as high as 16 percent!
Despite inane suggestions to deal with inflation by eating Chef Boyardee or charging their guests, Americans are still going to want to embrace their traditions. But what is that going to look like for families this year?
According to the Farm Bureau, the cost of a Thanksgiving dinner has increased a stunning 20 percent from just one year ago.
While turkey prices have partly increased due to the nationwide avian flu causing something of a turkey shortage, inflation is still hitting hard at the checkout line. Families will inevitably see the difference when they load up on holiday staples:
Source: Farm Bureau
Americans are feeling the pinch
When asked if the rising prices would affect their Thanksgiving plans in some way, a majority said yes. A recent survey found that two in three voters say they anticipate inflation affecting their holiday festivities this Thanksgiving—whether that’s increased prices in food, gas, or airfare.
And at the very least, most Americans are deeply concerned about the ever-increasing prices of consumer goods. A recent Center for Excellence in Polling (CEP) survey revealed that a staggering 94 percent of likely voters were either somewhat or very concerned about inflation. The concern over inflation is not bound by party lines, either—even 90 percent of likely Democrat voters say they’re worried.
What can be done?
Unfortunately, there’s no quick fix in time for the big meal this week. But there are steps that lawmakers can take to reduce prices and bring some relief in the new year.
Two drivers of inflation are massive government spending and skyrocketing energy costs, and any proposed policies should address these issues.
For one, we should rein in out-of-control government spending. This could be accomplished through an improved and expanded version of the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act—or REINS Act. Federal spending has skyrocketed over the last decade with no end in sight—and when more money is in circulation, it naturally becomes worth less and less. Sadly, the federal government continues to spend without concern for the future impacts of these deficits. The Biden administration’s unilateral decisions to cancel student loan debt on the tab of the taxpayer and other regulations in the 72,000 pages-worth this White House has enacted with no accountability from Congress or the taxpayer are great examples of the desperate need for this reform.
The REINS Act would bring accountability to government spending. Specifically, it would require congressional approval of rules that will likely cost more than $100 million per year before federal agencies may implement them. It would put the people’s representatives back in the driver’s seat of approving expensive rules and regulations that would cost taxpayers dearly.
Another solution is to pursue energy independence. The Biden administration’s red tape on the energy industry and its insistence on foreign oil in the name of their “green agenda” are major contributors to skyrocketing energy prices—which are inevitably passed to consumer goods.
On his first day in office, the president canceled the permit for the Keystone Pipeline. Not only would the pipeline have brought nearly one million barrels of oil into the U.S. every day, but it would’ve done so more cleanly and safely than moving oil via truck or rail. The White House also canceled leases for drilling for oil on federal lands. Reversing these poor policy decisions would be a great first step.
And even better would be to halt the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rule requiring all publicly traded companies to disclose greenhouse gas emissions as material risk to investors. This and other forms of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria in investing are directly responsible for burdening the oil and gas industry with less capital, which inevitably leads to the closure of domestic oil and gas plants, resulting in lower energy supply and of course, higher prices.
A little over a month ago, President Biden claimed the economy is “strong as hell” while visiting small businesses in Portland, Oregon (where inflation is a shocking 12.8 percent, by the way).
Plenty of Americans disagree and will be reaping the consequences of his administration’s poor choices when they prepare for the second “most expensive Thanksgiving ever” of his term in office.
The “most expensive” anything is not a sign of a strong economy—something is amiss. Only real solutions that hold bureaucrats accountable for spending tax dollars and get us closer to energy independence will tame inflation and restore hope and opportunity to the American economy—and the dinner table.