Last month, the White House unveiled a strange new message that left economists, workers, and consumers scratching their heads. “Bidenomics,” the president’s team announced, “is working.”
This must have come as news to millions of families struggling to make ends meet against the galloping inflation rates, sluggish wage growth, suffocating regulations, and cronyism that have defined this president’s stewardship of the United States economy . They know that Bidenomics is not working. And Hispanics, in particular, bear the brunt of rising prices, shrinking opportunities, and high inequality.
President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats came into office in 2021 promising to “rescue” and “build back” the American economy after the COVID pandemic. Unfortunately, they relied on the same old big-government missteps that have failed for decades.
They passed $4.8 trillion in new spending that they said would grow the economy from the “bottom up.” Instead, under this mountain of new debt, the economy bottomed out. Inflation began rising almost the day Biden was sworn in. Consumer prices have jumped more than 16% under Bidenomics. Wages, on the other hand, have grown much slower, meaning workers’ paychecks have actually fallen by 3% since Biden took office.
And, of course, this inflation has hurt lower-income workers most of all. They spend higher proportions of their income on the essentials that inflation hits hardest — food, housing, and energy. That helps explain why Hispanic families report higher levels of inflation stress than any other ethnic group.
As Washington spending drove prices up, the Biden administration compounded the problem with a needless war on domestic energy. By intentionally restricting the supply of fuels, Biden goosed the prices of everything that is grown, raised, manufactured, refrigerated, or transported.
Bottom line, Bidenomics is just Bidenflation.
Today, the White House boasts about the low unemployment rate, but mostly to distract Americans from the lower workforce participation rate. Under Bidenomics, not only are workers earning less than they used to, but fewer people are even looking for work at all.
On the other hand, Bidenomics has been pretty good for folks at the top of the income scale. Elites and insiders benefited from Biden’s student loan bailout, his trillion-dollar green energy giveaway, and the hundreds of billions in “lost” COVID money.
In every case, the president’s policies are to blame. The tragic irony of Bidenomics is that these are exactly the stifling, centralized policies that tens of thousands of Hispanic families came here to escape.
That’s why The LIBRE Initiative is rallying around a new agenda of commonsense reforms titled “Prosperity is Possible.” Our pro-growth, pro-consumer, pro-family proposals would create the stronger, fairer, dynamic economy that Bidenomics has held back for two-and-a-half years.
Rather than fueling inflation with more government spending and debt, we could instead fuel economic investment by getting the federal budget under control.
Rather than allowing politicians and bureaucrats to pick winners and losers in the market, we could empower consumers to do so — putting businesses back to work for the American people rather than the other way around.
And rather than smothering domestic energy production, we could be rewarding it — and reaping the benefits both in new jobs and lower prices throughout the economy.
The new jobs, opportunities, and optimism created by a growing economy will spill over into every sector of our national life. New investment leads to new innovations — new technologies, new medicines, cleaner energy, and better work-life balance.
Biden was right when he said America’s economy should be rebuilt from the bottom up. He just doesn’t understand that government-directed taxing, borrowing, and spending do the exact opposite.
Hispanics — and all Americans — know we can do better. And we can again if only Washington would put hardworking families ahead of partisan politics for a change.
Jose Mallea is the chief executive officer of the LIBRE Initiative.
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