Inflation: a few thoughts

I know several people on the Peninsula who fully understand what "inflation" really is. If you were born in the 1920s or 30s, you were born in "zero" inflation. Nobody had any money; even the rich had very little. Through the 40s I worked mostly for $1.00 per hour, and after getting out of the Navy in 1955 went to work driving a gravel dump truck for a $1.00 and got another 25 cents when able to back up to the spreader and spread the gravel over the oiled surface.

When I started grade school, of course you had to have a dental check and most of the kids liked to go to this one older dentist. Why? He had molds of Snow White and the Seven dwarfs and filled them with plaster of Paris and gave you one of your choice if you were good. You could paint them, use crayons or whatever. My mother had to pay him $5 for the filling. We have the best dentist on the Peninsula, but the other day, it cost her 1 month plus one-quarter of her next Social Security check for two fillings.

What I call sneaky inflation is when I buy ice cream one week for a half-gallon and the next time the same price for a 1 1/2 quarts of the same kind. We have a kind of bread that we only buy if available. The other day, my wife picked up two loaves and when I went to make a sandwich, the slices were much smaller, too small for my slices of ham and cheese. I looked at the label and figured it out. Again, the price was the same, but the size of the loaf had been reduced from a 2 pound loaf to a 1 pound, 5.6 ounce loaf. Why not be truthful to your customers and just jack the price up a little? When this happens to every item in the store, I think we are sitting at 50 percent or more inflation just over the last 3 years.

People in Washington know nothing about this as their maids and servants probably do all their buying. Also I think most of them are trying to use the "New Math." How can students understand it when the teachers can/t teach it?


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