Thank the Government for the High Price of Holiday Meals

But also be thankful that Americans have been spared the worst of soaring food costs.


As we head into the holidays, part of the season's cheer will be tarnished by the higher prices we'll all pay for holiday festivities. In fact, food, like many goods and services, is costing us more as the flood of dollars unleashed by the federal government diminishes their value, ensuring our money doesn't go as far as it once did. If you're looking for a relative bright spot, count yourself lucky as an American, because things could be worse: Around the world, people generally far less prosperous than those in our own country are paying almost one third more for their meals than they did a year ago. That's a lot more dough for a lot less bread.

With Thanksgiving looming, a relatively easy comparison is made in the price of a turkey dinner with all the trimmings compared to the same feast in 2020.

"Compared to 2020, a 16-pound turkey increased from about $19 to $25 this year," CBS Los Angeles reports. "A 30-ounce pumpkin pie mix is up from about $2 to at most $5.49. Milk increased this year to $3.39 compared to $3.08 in 2020. A box of cubed stuffing is almost a dollar more up from $2.81 to $3.79. The only observed decrease in price was for a bag of fresh cranberries, $2.49 instead of $2.69 last year."

The numbers support the anecdotes. With inflation running at an annual rate of 6.2 percent, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics figures, food prices are up overall by 5.3 percent, with meat, fish, eggs, and poultry (that Thanksgiving turkey being the obvious example) up by a painful 10.5 percent. How about a festive bowl of baked beans, everybody!

Theoretically, higher wages could off-set higher prices if they moved in lockstep across the economy, but they don't. Some members of the media (such as Stephanie Ruhle who is, somehow, NBC News' senior business correspondent) attribute inflation to pressure to pay higher wages to attract workers. "Higher wages are one of the contributing factors to inflation," Ruhle insisted this week.

In fact, though, "real average hourly earnings decreased 1.2 percent, seasonally adjusted, from October 2020 to October 2021," according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. So, that's not behind the price increases. What's going on?

"The US Federal Reserve and Treasury have printed trillions of new dollars and sent checks to just about every American," comments Hoover Institution economist John Cochrane. "Inflation should not have been terribly hard to foresee; and yet it has caught the Fed completely by surprise."

"I think they're just not recognizing just how much demand is being created by the tremendous wall of money – 15 percent of GDP – in one year that they released last spring," agrees Larry Summers, director of the National Economic Council under President Barack Obama, about the Biden administration's massive spending.

In fact, as early as February, Summers warned "there is a chance that macroeconomic stimulus on a scale closer to World War II levels than normal recession levels will set off inflationary pressures of a kind we have not seen in a generation, with consequences for the value of the dollar and financial stability."

Compounding the flood of cheap money is a supply chain broken by a series of government interventions since the beginning of the pandemic, on top of the usual perils posed by nature and accidents. Pandemic lockdowns, bureaucratic hiccups, inflexible rules, and tariffs disrupted production, shifted consumers' needs, and interfered with transportation, making it difficult for sellers to satisfy demand.

"Market economies tend to be pretty good at getting food on the supermarket shelves and fuel in petrol stations, if left to themselves," British economist Philip Pilkington noted last month. "That last part is key: if left to themselves. Heavy-handed interference in market economies tends to produce the same pathologies we see in socialist economies, including shortages and inflation."

Transportation woes may actually worsen with U.S. energy prices up 30 percent, including the fuel needed for trucks that transport goods to market. Diesel shortages have been reported in the U.S. and abroad and that means higher costs for, among other things, stocking supermarket shelves.

As poorly as that bodes for Americans and their food budgets, it's worse for people who live much closer to the edge. Around the world, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization's food price index is up by a whopping 31.3 percent since October of last year. Cereal prices are up by 22.4 percent, dairy by 15.5 percent, and meat by 22.1 percent since October 2020.

Some price elevations predate the pandemic, observes the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which points to an outbreak of African swine fever that devastated much of China' hog herd, which represents half of the world's hogs. But disease, weather, and other natural events are constantly with us, and the dangers they pose are good reasons to not further burden the market interactions that keep us fed. Instead, "early lockdown measures and supply chain disruptions induced a spike in consumer food prices," adds the IMF, which also points to "soaring shipping and transport costs" which themselves largely result from ill-considered interventions.

As troubling as rising food prices in the United States are, especially for lower-income families, soaring prices in less-prosperous places are potentially catastrophic.

"There was a dramatic worsening of world hunger in 2020 … much of it likely related to the fallout of COVID-19," the World Health Organization (WHO) warned in July. "While the pandemic's impact has yet to be fully mapped, a multi-agency report estimates that around a tenth of the global population – up to 811 million people – were undernourished last year."

Again, there were preexisting problems in places, but WHO added that "in many parts of the world, the pandemic has triggered brutal recessions and jeopardized access to food."

As you plan your menu and adjust your budget for the holidays and beyond, you can thank government policymakers for the high prices you pay and the items you do without. But be somewhat thankful that our country still enjoys enough prosperity to insulate us from the worst outcomes of incompetent political meddling in the marketplace. Elsewhere, people are literally going hungry for the same reasons.

NEXT: Watching Mikhail Gorbachev Resign in Moscow

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  1. More government will not fix this but instead make it worse. Bug or feature?

    1. Feature. Dems know that crises drive voters, so to continue to boost that fortified turnout, the crises cannot stop.

      Seriously though, they're incompetent jackasses who never looked farther than that delicious pork laid out in the bills.

      1. The Democrats look to their mentor and father of pork Robert Byrd for inspiration. Perhaps Byrd (D) should be called the grand wizard of pork.

        1. Sorcerers of Swine state votes.

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      2. This is how NAZI GERMANY began. Laos too. There was a TV docu on that this week.

        Econ crisis, no jobs? Be a soldier. Enforce Govt. mandates to make a living...

        1. The Greenshirts now.

          1. good one!

            Free medical care..whether you want it or not.

            1. Until the slaves rebel. Then there will be no medical care AT-ALL.

              1. Yet another good reason to keep Fjrst Aid supplies, overstocks of prescriptions if possible, and learn the Heimlich Maneuver, CPR, and AED. Not to mention develop an exercise regimen, give up smoking, diet carefully, and get regular check-ups.

                None of this is to deny that everyone is self-owned and has a right to live as they choose, simply to encourage a way of living that helps people fight the good fight longer and better. It's what I call being a Health Partizan.

    2. Bugs are the feature, as in "You will own nothing, you will eat bugs..."

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  2. Fuck Joe Biden.

    1. Fuck Joe Biden

      1. Fuck Joe Biden

        1. LGB!!

          Hes doing a fine job of doing it to himself.

          Let them destroy themsrlves from within.

          1. Problem is, they're going to take the country with them while they do it.

            1. ^this. They are breaking shit faster than can possibly be fixed.

            2. thats the goal of the UNs Agenda 21.

              De industrialize the US since we use too much of the worlds resources.

              After that happens, people around the world will starve to death which makes the likes of Sanger and Gates perfectly happy

              After all, birthday cake candles emit carbon and along with cow fartd, will eventually kill the Planet.

              1. Always annoyed me...the whole "We are overpopulated" folks.

                You know, NOBODY is asking you to not try and solve YOUR small part of the problem.

                1. its the population lie.

                  TEN percent if the earths surface is populated. And none of the oceans.

                  Look at a night view from a satellite...very sparse lights except for cities..

  3. There is literally no inflation. Well, the one possible exception is the price of smokeless tobacco — and nobody who really matters would buy that stuff anyway.


    1. Everyone knows the price of spittin’ tobaccy only went up 10¢ , so there is no HAPERINFLATION.

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    2. #snuffoutsmokers #banmenthols

      All part of keeping the Dem plantations booming!

      1. Idea.

        Burn Democrats instead of forests.

        Just make sure theyre dry first, wet shit is hard to light.

        1. I approve that message.

  4. looking for a space where you can wet your thirsty throat buy wine online

  5. To every governmental dictatorial busybody:

    "Get the hell out of my way" - John Galt

  6. How does a truckload of an item not showing up change the VALUE of already manufactured goods?

    It cant. Costs to manufacture something have nothing to do with selling, directly and dont change once manufactured.

    PRICES, on the other hand, are ARBITRARY especially when GREED is involved.

    This is a proof that prices have nothing to do with inflation.

    Busineses have FIXED COSTS. So in a shortage situation, it is logical to assume a price rise for inventory on hand could at least cover operating expenses.

    Greed explains it better. Prices went crazy during the Obama Economic Train Wreck and shortages were NOT a factor, despite the Pathologically Lying Medias attempts to invent them.

    The MSM invented a corn shortage in 2012 and tried to link it to food prices, despite the FACTS that:

    The majority of US grown corn isnt ( human) food grade,

    Ag Day reported TWELVE TRILLION BUSHELS backed up at ports at New Orleans.

    The Net was flooded with Lying Democrat Trolls commenting about people starving because of a corn shortage.

    BREAD is made of WHEAT.

    Nothing but Left Wing manufactured lies to cover up Democrat failures in dealing with economics Just like Bidens gross failure now.

    1. Supply and demand. Take a basic economics course and things will make more sense.

      1. Be fair. In post-economic social justice paradise, things just appear (or they appear by government mandate). And everyone gets exactly the same, corrected for victim-oppressor status.

    2. ps Get an Economics book.

      Books are made of paper.

      Try to find the phrase " price inflation."

      Get back with us when you do.

      Never... it does not exist except in the Lying Media.

    3. "PRICES, on the other hand, are ARBITRARY especially when GREED is involved."

      Prices (absent gov't supported monopolies) are always and everywhere set by the buyers.
      Greed is a bullshit, meaningless term used by those who have no idea what they're chattering about.

  7. One effective economic and public health solution to higher food prices is to reduce food consumption.

    42% of American adults were obese in 2019, and the obesity rate now is likely above 50% (largely due to Democrat lockdowns). Childhood obesity has also skyrocketed in recent years.

    And since obesity is the second largest risk factor (next to old age) for covid morbidity and mortality, reducing obesity should be America's top public health priority.

    Reducing consumption of junk food, increasing consumption of vegetables and fruits, and getting regular exercise will do far more to improve American's public health than the combined impact of covid lockdowns, mask mandates and vaccine mandates (none of which have protected public health, and all of which have violated basic civil rights.

    But of course, many woke lefties at CDC, FDA, US SG, other DHHS agencies, the news media and among Democrats absurdly consider telling the truth about obesity and encouraging weight loss to be "fat shaming".

    1. That's an interesting take. Americans are too fat anyway, so it's good that food is becoming so expensive that some will have to go without. Of course, this doesn't apply to the over-weight politicians just the peons who are living from paycheck to paycheck.

      1. It isn’t good. Healthy food tends to be more expensive. So people will buy more low quality, cheap processed shit.

        1. Veggies are inexpensive. Unless you pay someone to cut them and arrange them in a gluten-free wrap with arugula and raspberry balsamic vinaigrette on top.

          1. How about a festive bowl of baked beans, everybody!

            Benny Hill recommended that you could serve the baked beans with pineapple and poi and then play Hawaiian music.

    2. Trouble is, healthy food costs more than junk food.

  8. High prices for food?

    Not to illegal aliens and welfare recipients!

    We said " Anybody but Hillary." Look what we got.

    I bet Hillary is really pissed off now. Beaten out by Biden, a mental vegetable.

    Joe Biden, all Three Stooges rolled up in one.

    The Applesauce industry should hire him as Spokesman.

    "Miss me yet?" Barack Obama.

    Lets Go Brandon!!

  9. The Democrats who rigged the polls to make Trump look bad cant rig them enough to make Biden look good!

    Joe Biden takes the cake. He has no idea where he put it...

    Jill and Joe went to a fancy restaurant. The Waiter asked Jill

    " For your Entree Maam?"

    She replied " Filet Mignon."

    " And for your Vegetable?"

    "Oh, thats my Husband Joe, hell just have Applesauce."

    1. She probably has to feed it to him by spoon after he sundowns late in the day. He likely needs more diaper changes too.

      1. Plugs for his head and one for his ass.

        He can ask Buttigeg about buttplugs.

        Biden can get anal leakage listed as a cayse for Disability.

  10. On the countdown to Soylent Green.

  11. But, just think, after sitting down to a pared back Thanksgiving meal, families can look forward to the following day's articles and "news" segments on the holiday festivities of those such as Kim Kardashian and Megan "MeMe" Markel and her side-kick, Harry. The reporting will include such tidbits such as how they and other celebrities also gave the masked hired help a frozen turkey and two hours off to spend time with their own families. Such benevolence!

    1. The only " royal" about Me- gan is shes a Royal Pain in the Ass.

      Brittain know how to get rid of foriegners.

    2. Are you for eating the rich for thanksgiving or something?

      1. As long as they have first been fattened up by their Thanksgiving dinner!

      2. no they cause diharreah

  12. It's a good thing I saved 16 cents on my 4th of July barbecue.

  13. Sweet little filler stories. You’d think a libertarian publication would mention the new pick for comptroller of the currency- (a Marxist from the old Soviet Union). Or maybe the American Medical Association distributing a manifesto on the end of meritocracy, private property, free markets. Promoting land reform.

    Not newsworthy right?

    1. ^^^^^^^^^^^^ that

    2. They covered the commie a week or so ago; got a link to the AMA story?

      1. The text of the document is on the AMAs website (although, it seems like they’ve taken the entire original text down that mentions property rights and land reform). The “equity” or CRT collective text is still up. Fox carried a couple stories. I’ll link the Daily Mail.

        1. This is why it’s important to never stop rooting out marxists and destroying them.

  14. Prices keep falling in BTC, dunno what you guys are worried about. Surely the smart people here don't hold savings in dollars, right?

    1. I save lead. Be glad to trade it with the Woke Brigade when they declare Civil War.

  15. Joe Biden - Both Beavis and Butthead with the nuke codes.

    The only saving grace is that Commies dont make war against they?

    1. Hey now! Beavis and Butthead would have done a better job with Afghanistan. Beavis and Butthead probably wouldn’t rape their own children.

  16. "Vermont has the highest vaccination rate in the country. So why are cases surging?"



    Must be a Democrat in charge?

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  18. Thanksgiving is problematic anyway, celebrating the survival of the colonizers, who arrived in 1620 no less, just one year after 1619 and the invention of slavery.

    And King George wasn't so bad I'm told.

    So we'd all be better off if we were.... Canadian?

    It was the Declaration that established the myth that George III was a tyrant. Yet George was the epitome of a constitutional monarch, deeply conscientious about the limits of his power.

    If only the Founders had held any respect to the opinions of mankind, such that they would have declared the causes that impelled them to seek separation, and to list out the facts to submit them to a candid world to reach its own conclusions.

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