June 7, 2022

Solving the Inflation Crisis – Next Election or Next Generation? – with E.J. Antoni - (Part 1) - [Ep. 124]

Solving the Inflation Crisis – Next Election or Next Generation? – with E.J. Antoni - (Part 1) - [Ep. 124]

Gas prices are approaching $10.00 a gallon in some areas, grocery costs have nearly doubled, and baby formula is unavailable for most parents in the U.S. The border is wide open, taxpayers provide economic assistance to millions of illegals, and our...


Gas prices are approaching $10.00 a gallon in some areas, grocery costs have nearly doubled, and baby formula is unavailable for most parents in the U.S. The border is wide open, taxpayers provide economic assistance to millions of illegals, and our government has decided to send money overseas, which increases our national debt. Inflation affects every American and undermines our national sovereignty and security. When solving problems, politicians often think of the next election, while statesmen think of the next generation. How can we solve this crisis as statesmen – securing freedom and prosperity for current and future generations? Listen as Linda and her guest, the well-known economist, E.J. Antoni, discuss solutions to the many complex economic problems facing America today. This is Part 1 of an informative and hope-inspiring two-part interview that you will not want to miss.

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Transcript

Linda J. Hansen:  Welcome. Thank you for tuning in to this episode of the Prosperity 101 Breakroom Economics Podcast. My name is Linda J. Hansen. Your host and the author of Prosperity 101 - Job Security Through Business Prosperity: The Essential Guide to Understanding How Policy Affects Your Paycheck, and the creator of the Breakroom Economics online course. The book, the course, and the entire podcast library can be found on Prosperity101.com. I seek to connect boardroom to breakroom and policy to paycheck by empowering and encouraging employers to educate employees about the public policy issues that affect their jobs.

 

My goal is to help people understand the foundations of prosperity, the policies of prosperity, and how to protect their prosperity by becoming informed, involved, and impactful. I believe this will lead to greater employee loyalty, engagement, and retention and to an increased awareness of the blessings and responsibilities of living in a free society. Listen each week to hear from exciting guests and be sure to visit Prosperity101.com.

 

Welcome. Thank you for listening today. I’m recording this in early June 2022. Gas prices are approaching $10 a gallon in some parts of the country. Groceries have nearly doubled in price since the 2020 election, and baby formula is not available for most parents in the United States, with many babies suffering enough to be hospitalized. The border is wide open and American taxpayers are providing economic assistance to thousands, actually millions of illegal citizens who enter our country and are guaranteed food, housing, transportation, and more. Our government has decided to send dollars to Ukraine, but we must borrow to do so, which increases our national debt, which is already at a terrifying tipping point for any sort of painless recovery. Inflation has hit every American household and affects every individual as well as our national sovereignty and security.

 

I have titled this episode, Solving the Inflation Crisis – Next Election or Next Generation? I’ve always appreciated the quote about how a politician thinks about the next election, but a statesman thinks about the next generation. I want to discuss how to solve this crisis as statesmen, securing freedom and prosperity for current and future generations. Solutions are available, but it will take wise, bold leadership to set our country back on course economically. Our President has proposed solutions, but will they work? Are they realistic? Here to discuss this and more is my guest, E.J. Antoni.

 

E.J. Antoni is a research fellow for Regional Economics in the Center for Data Analysis at The Heritage Foundation. His research focuses on fiscal and monetary policy. His work has been featured with a variety of news outlets, including Daily Caller, Fox News and Fox Business, Wall Street Journal, National Review, CNBC, Washington Times, The Center Square, Washington Examiner, Breitbart, The Federalist, and others. He is also a frequent guest on, and official economist of, WMAL’s Vince Coglianese Show, heard in the greater D.C. area.

 

E.J.’s research has also been featured with numerous think tanks and institutes including the Committee to Unleash Prosperity, where he is a senior fellow. Previously, he was an economist at Texas Public Policy Foundation, an economic consultant for FreedomWorks, and he has taught courses ranging from labor economics to money and banking. E.J. holds master’s and doctoral degrees in economics. 

 

E.J. is also my friend and he has been an adviser to my efforts with Prosperity 101, especially through the process of writing my most recent book, as he worked together with economist Steve Moore to provide excellent economic information. In addition, he has been a previous guest on this podcast and I invite you to listen to Episode 79, Don’t Mess With Texas! Protecting Policies That Bring Freedom and Prosperity, and to episode Number 80, It’s Elementary! Education Policies Can Help or Hinder. Both episodes were recorded when E.J. was working with the Texas Public Policy Foundation and now he brings that experience and insight back to the broadcast with new information, especially related to the financial crisis facing our country today.

 

Thank you for joining me, E.J. It’s a pleasure to have you back on the podcast. I look forward to discussing the inflation crisis and to helping listeners understand how to protect themselves and to help steer our nation to a more prosperous future.

 

E.J. Antoni:  Linda, thank you for having me.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Well, it’s my pleasure to have you back again, you are always full of information. And I know as we were planning this interview, I think what I’d like to focus on the most is addressing what President Biden has proposed to solve the inflation crisis. I know he recently gave an address on it and he has released some statements on it. And I’d love to hear your viewpoint on President Biden’s solutions to the inflation crisis.

 

E.J. Antoni:  I’d be happy to discuss that. I think one of the things we have to get to right off the bat is how – if you look at what the President has proposed, it is literally the exact same thing as what he proposed beforehand. It’s essentially just the Build Back Better Plan wrapped in a new veneer, except now instead of accomplishing what it was originally supposed to accomplish, now, somehow it’s supposed to accomplish reducing inflation, even though nothing has changed. So, somehow, despite the plan essentially being exactly the same, it’s now going to achieve an entirely different end. So, Red flag number one, right?

 

Linda J. Hansen:  [Laughs].

 

E.J. Antoni:  But the other thing is that there’s really nothing in his plan that gets to the heart of the problem, which is that inflation is caused by the government borrowing too much money, spending too much money, printing too much money. Inflation is fundamentally a tax. It’s a hidden tax, right? Because it’s not a tax that Congress had to officially vote for and that the President had to sign into law. It wasn’t like they raise the top marginal tax rate or anything like that. But at the end of the day, it’s still a tax. And you can’t reduce the tax by increasing government spending. Literally, there’s not a single tax in the history of the world that was ever able to be reduced that way.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Absolutely. And people don’t think about it. They – when they go to the gas pump or they go to the grocery store and they see the difference in the prices, they don’t think of it as a hidden tax. They just see the difference in prices and blame is cast by so many people, you know, right and left to and – but we really need to drill down into the numbers and the issues and find out what’s really causing things.

 

I know, you and I have talked before about energy policy, too. I mean, that’s a huge one. I mentioned at the beginning of the episode, gas approaching a $10 a gallon price in some areas of the country. This is something unheard of in years past and we’ve gone from being energy independent to energy-dependent, in this few, you know, the few short months really since President Biden has become president. And it has really begun to hurt people at the pump. But it isn’t just the pump, it’s everything that is shipped, and everything that is transported because fuel and energy, you know, makes the world go round. So, can you address that, the energy cost?

 

E.J. Antoni:  Sure, absolutely. Yeah, people, I think a lot of times, underestimate just how much energy affects literally everything we do and everything we buy. And because of that, when the price of energy goes up, doesn’t matter really what the energy is, but when the price of energy goes up, the price of everything else is going to go up down the road. So, this might be a good time then to distinguish between just price increases and inflation.

 

So, in a purely academic sense, right? What is inflation? inflation is not so much prices going up. It’s the value of the dollar going down. And what that does is it causes anything measured in dollars, which is essentially everything in our economy and then also some things around the world, like the price of oil, which is traded in dollars, but it causes the price of everything to go up. But that’s very different from saying, “We’re going to stop certain imports of oil or we’re going to ban pipelines, or we’re going to shut down refineries or whatever the case may be.” Where we’re going to impact the specific industry and make it more expensive to produce within that industry, okay, well, now what you’re doing is you’re just driving up the cost of energy, but you haven’t actually touched the value of the dollar. Do you see the difference there?

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Absolutely.

 

E.J. Antoni:  So, one of the things that’s kind of muddying the waters right now, if you will, and that we’re going to need more data and be able to look back with the benefit of hindsight, is to figure out, “Okay, exactly what portion of the price increases that we’re seeing right now are truly inflation, the devaluing of the dollar? And what portion is just the catastrophic rise in the price of energy that is now trickling down to everything else?” So – and now this is where I make people on the Left and the Right mad. So, it’s probably the favorite part of my job. 

 

Linda J. Hansen:  [Laughs].

 

E.J. Antoni:  Because numbers don’t really care what your ideology is or what your feelings are. You know, the Left will say, as they are right now, “We just need to spend more money on the problem and that’ll solve it.” Or if you’re an adherent to modern monetary theory, you say, “Well, we just need to raise taxes because people have too much money, so they’re spending too much in demand and blah, blah, blah,” all of which is just nonsense because what they don’t tell you is that if they tax the money away from the people, that means the government now has it and the government spends it. Somehow it’s not inflationary when the government spends money, only when you and I spend money. Sure. Right. 

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Right. 

 

E.J. Antoni:  So, the Left really has no answer. Right? But honestly, there are many political pundits on the Right, who are just simply not educated on the subject and they think, “Oh, it’s just government spending that causes inflation.” But that’s not entirely true either. And we actually have several examples in history where we can point to and say, “No, wait. This didn’t happen.”

 

So, for example, in the 1920s, for literally every single year of that decade, the government ran a surplus. And yet, by the end of the decade, inflation started getting out of control, and it caused a bubble in stocks, caused a bubble and urban real estate, right? And ended up leading to the crash of 1929. Then, let’s fast forward to the 1980s. Ronald Reagan, in an effort to spend the Soviet Union into the ground – I’m not saying that was the wrong decision. But what it did was it caused the deficit and the debt to just explode. So, what we’re at the time record-breaking levels. And yet, when Reagan came into office, inflation was in double digits. And in 18 months, it was down to 3%. And it basically remained relatively low for the rest of the decade, despite these massive increases in government spending. So, clearly, there’s something else going on there, right?

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Absolutely.

 

E.J. Antoni:  And what the other key element is, is the Federal Reserves. Because when the government has to borrow money from you and I, right? They can’t pay for all their spending. They float a bond, meaning they just essentially promised to pay you your money back in the future plus a little extra. When they go to you and I to do that, the money is simply just changing hands, right? It comes out of my pocket or your pocket, and it goes to the Treasury, and then they spend it. And eventually, they have to give us the money back, which is going to mean tax increases in the future. 

 

But when the Federal Reserve gives Congress the money to spend, where did that money come from? They literally create it. The Federal Reserve has the power – a lot of times we say create money out of nothing, but that’s actually a misnomer. They create money out of debt. In the instant the debt is created, the money is also created. And so, what happens is – and again, we’ll wind back to 1929, right? By the end of the decade, the reason inflation got out of control was because the Federal Reserve started creating money to try to solve the imbalance of gold shipments between the United States and Europe, mostly Great Britain.

 

But in the 1980s, what happened, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Paul Volcker, basically washed his hands of Congress’ spending and said, “You know what? If you guys want to spend all this money, that’s fine. But you know what? Find the money yourself. I’m not just going to print it.” And so, he shut off the printing presses and inflation stopped, and interest rates went through the roof. Why? Because Congress had to entice the public to buy bonds to loan them the money. And the only way they could do that is if they offered much higher yields or interest rates on those bonds. In other words, it wasn’t enough to say to the public, “Listen, can you loan us $10 million and we’ll give you 1% interest a year?” No, they had to give them 7%, 8%, 9%, 10% interest a year in order to get all that money.

 

And so, it cost the government a heck of a lot more to borrow the money. All right, so now, what’s been going on today? What has basically been happening is the Federal Reserve has been acting like the personal financing arm of a spendthrift Congress and President. And so, every time they write a check that they can’t cash, the Federal Reserve has stepped in for the last two years and has just run the printing presses to cover it. And the result of that has been a massive devaluation of the dollar, which is a massive increase in prices. That’s exactly what we’re seeing now.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Yeah. It’s really amazing what happens. It’s like – yeah, I’ve heard it referred to as funny money. You know that, that it’s just – it really devalues the dollar like you mentioned, and I’m so grateful that you really clarified that there truly is a difference between just higher prices and the rise in prices for things that can be caused by a variety of different reasons. But – and what is true, inflation, but right now, we’re at a point where, you know, we’re seeing everything come together in such a crisis mode, you referred to, you know, the 20s and then like right before 1980 and things. I know that in the 70s, leading up to those years with Reagan, we didn’t have the same national debt going into that, correct?

 

And the other thing that set us, I think, in a better spot as a nation during that time period, was that we were much more inclined to domestically produce items than we have been over the last few decades where we’ve taken so many items of production and sent them to other countries. So, that weakens us quite a bit. How does all of that affect the inflation and the – well, not only the prices, we see the prices, but this value of the dollar, I think it’s really important for people to understand that. And then to understand, you know, what steps might be needed to turn this around when you talked about what Paul Volcker did in the 80s. I mean, this was unpopular.

 

You know, it took bold leadership, and it took them being – President Reagan and Volcker being criticized by a lot of people, and – but they stayed the course. And they knew what would actually help turn it around. So, I think that’s part of the reason why I titled the episode, you know, Solving the Inflation Crisis – Next Election or Next Generation? Because, you know, people come up with “solutions” to solve the crisis. You know, we can maybe mitigate some pain points in the short term but what will be the effects long-term? And we have to really look like what are we doing now that’s going to help make sure that three years from now, five years from now, 20 years from now, America can be on a solid economic footing and that American families and businesses can prosper.

 

E.J. Antoni:  Yeah. One of our big problems today is just scale, probably even more so than then whether we’re a primarily manufacturing or non-manufacturing economy, whether it’s a service sector or otherwise. Things have gotten so ridiculously out of proportion that – and we are so ridiculously over-leveraged, that we’re in a very dangerous position as a society, as a country, in fact, globally even because of the impact that the United States economy, particularly our financial markets, have on the entire global economy.

 

You know, Alexander Hamilton a lot of times is maligned for his one quote, “The national debt, if it is not excessive, will be to us a national blessing.” But, you know, for the most part, the criticisms that stem from that are taking Hamilton out of context, right? And what he was referring to, at the time, was how the states all had different debts and that if we combine this into one national debt, that is effectively binding all the states together. We are all co-responsible for each other’s problems and we all share in each other’s prosperity, in the same way that if you’re a cosigner on a loan or a lease, for example, if the other person doesn’t pay, you’re still responsible for the whole thing, because you cosigned, right? That’s what that means.

 

And Alexander Hamilton was a financial genius, self-taught nonetheless. But to his point, which again, he is often not given credit for – but to his point, the national debt cannot become excessive because it risks not just the financial credit and standing of the United States, but it risks the United States itself, and we’re getting to that point today. We are now at a point where it’s questionable whether or not the Federal Reserve is going to have the political will to do what they need to do with interest rates, because of the incredible pain that’s going to cause in terms of borrowing costs on this federal debt.

 

What I mean by that is, if you can imagine a credit card where the interest rate can go up and down, right? That’s essentially the national debt. It’s not like your mortgage where you can have a fixed rate as opposed to an arm. If you have a fixed rate for the next 30 years, that mortgage rate is not going to change. That’s not the national debt, because we haven’t actually paid the national debt in years – in years. Every time a bond comes due, it doesn’t matter if it’s, you know, a three-month, a 10-year, a 30-year, or whatever.

 

Every time a bond comes due, we simply just float a new bond to cover the old one plus whatever interest is due on it. So, because of that, the debt is constantly being rolled over at current interest rates. Now, obviously not the entirety of the debt, right? Because there are things like 30-year bonds in there. So, they’re not going to roll over, but once every 30 years. But you do have portions of the debt that every single day are expiring and need to be replaced because the Congress is constantly running a deficit.

 

And so, as interest rates go up, the total borrowing costs on the debt is going to go up right along with it. And we’re at the point where it’ll be to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars in just interest payments. I’m not talking about the government actually like spending the money productively or non-productively. This is literally just the borrowing cost of the existing debt, not even new spending.

 

In terms of what does need to be done though, that’s exactly it. The Federal Reserve needs to once again wash their hands of the situation and say, “Congress, President, you got yourself into this mess. You can get yourself out. Time to put on your big boy pants.” Right? And basically, how – well, let me put it this way. The only way that that can be successful then – the only way that Congress can get their way out of it then if they don’t have the Federal Reserve to back them up, because they have to make the hard decisions to cut spending and I mean, drastically – drastically cut spending. That’s the only way out of this. Because the alternative is for the Federal Reserve to just keep doing what they’re doing, which is to continue inflation.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Well, and inflation, as it continues on, is becoming more and more unbearable for American families and businesses. And we’re already seeing this tip and people are really suffering. And, you know, when inflation starts to affect society and, you know, businesses, manufacturing, families, you see all the other side effects of it. And it is just such a heartbreaking thing to see this beautiful country, that has been so prosperous for so many years, to be struggling again.

 

And when I think back before we close this, I would like to just have you give a little bit of a parallel if we could to the previous administration, and what those policies had done for our economy compared to the policies of this administration and where these policies are taking the nation. Because whether you’re Republican or Democrat, or you love Trump or hate Trump, or love Biden or hate Biden, whatever it is, monetary policy, like you said earlier, the numbers don’t lie. I mean, they’re non-partisan. The numbers are non-partisan, right? So, we have numbers that can show us what works and what doesn’t. And when I think of the Trump years and what was working in terms of job growth or home ownership, or all these other factors, I’d love to just have you remind people like where we were compared to where we are, if you would.

 

E.J. Antoni:  Sure, sure. Yeah, I mean, just to your point on the non-partisan nature of monetary policy, Jerome Powell was I think, in my opinion, hands down the worst appointment that Donald Trump made without a doubt. And I mean, that was evident back when Trump was still president, and I think it was like 2018, maybe ‘19 when all of a sudden, we were seeing really good growth numbers out of the economy. And Powell said, “Oh, no, you know, we’re having growth. That’s going to cause inflation.” No, my goodness, that’s a Keynesian myth that has been disproven. I don’t know how many times over over the last century, and yet there are still plenty of people like Powell at the Federal Reserve, who buy it hook, line, and sinker.

 

And so, you know, he started raising interest rates. There’s a financial market called the reverse repurchase agreement market that got all messed up that year because there was too much tightening by the Federal Reserve. And you know, and then there is the exact opposite. Instead of things being too tight, Powell made them way too loose, so to speak, which is to say he created way too much money. And now that’s why we’re suffering in the mess we are right now. Because of this ridiculous inflation that could have been, you know, that the Fed could have gotten ahead of it a year ago, and instead they were too busy talking about things like diversity and climate change. Why? Because the – Jerome Powell had to worry about being re-nominated. And I assure you if he was worrying about being re-nominated by Donald Trump, he would not have been spouting a bunch of Left-wing talking points, but here we are. 

 

So, I guess to get back though to your broader question. When you look at what this President campaigned on, it is basically exactly what he has done in terms of his energy policy. He promised to end fossil fuels and he’s in the process of doing it right now. Starting on his very first day in office, he began his war on fossil fuels and it continues to this day, whether it’s ending pipelines or canceling new leases, and even on existing leases. I mean, what good does a lease – to drill on federal lands do for you, if you’re not allowed to build a pipeline to carry the stuff away? 

 

E.J. Antoni:  So many people don’t realize this talking point from the administration of, “Oh, we have like, you know, 4,000 or 5,000 unused leases. Oh, my gosh. These greedy oil companies. They could drill, but they just don’t want to because they want prices to be high and blah, blah. No, no. If it was profitable to do it, they would do it, because they’re in it to make money. But the problem is, they literally can’t build a pipeline to carry the stuff away from the drill site. So, why on earth would I invest the hundreds of millions of dollars to actually start that well. 

 

If I have zero confidence in my ability to get carried away, because every time I try to build a pipeline, I’m told no. On top of that, there’s been a tremendous regulatory war by this President in terms of oil and gas. And again, you know, to tie this back in with the Federal Reserve, one of the responsibilities of the Federal Reserve is banking regulation. And in an attempt to make sure that banks are not taking advantage of their customers, they do what are called stress tests on the banks to make sure that in the event of some kind of financial downturn or even a calamity, whatever the case may be, that the banks have sufficient reserves and that their investments are not too risky, and that they’re diversified, so that they will still be able to pay depositors. Because remember banks don’t only accept your deposit, they also turn around and lend it back out to other people.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Right.

 

E.J. Antoni:  And very little of your money is actually kept in the bank. So, what the Federal Reserve has done is they’ve added to that stress test at the request of this administration, whether or not a business is invested in fossil fuels. And if that bank is invested in fossil fuels, it negatively affects what is the equivalent of their credit rating. And if they’re invested in so-called green energy, right? Solar and wind, it will positively affect – again, what is the equivalent of their credit rating? And so, you have seen this tremendous disinvestment in the fossil fuel industry. So, now, if you do want to start a new well, if you do want to, let’s say, open a refinery, whatever the case may be, do anything that’s going to help bring more product to market and keep prices down. It is almost impossible to get access to Capitol. So, now these companies, especially the small ones who don’t have large retained earnings, they’re having to go to places like hedge funds and venture capitalists, which is fine, except that that’s typically a much more expensive way to get your loanable funds.

 

And so, what they’re doing is they’re having to pay much higher interest rates, which means they can only do wells that are incredibly profitable. And so, we have this tremendous potential now in this country, that is literally and figuratively untapped. And it’s all because of that part of price increases, right? Before we distinguish between the academic inflation and selected price increases that affect the prices of other things. That part of the price increases we’re seeing lies entirely at the feet of the regulatory state that has been essentially brought on by the Biden administration.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  You just bring up such a great point because people don’t realize that regulations, you mentioned inflation being a hidden tax, oftentimes regulations are, you know, in my mind and hidden tax, too, because of the cost they bring new products to the market and the compliance costs and things, but here when we have like environmental, social, you know, governance in investing and things like that, it is – you know, the ESG and also the diversity, equity, and inclusion and all that in terms of what banks or investors will invest in in terms of companies or entrepreneurs.

 

It really limits people in terms of growing their company or bringing products to market, whether it’s fossil fuels or other things. So, this is so important. Our time has run out for this particular episode, but would you be willing to come back and continue this conversation a bit? I’d really love to be able to dive in a little more into, say, what the current administration, what the Biden administration, talks about in terms of job growth and employment numbers, and how that really compares to previous years and other inflationary times.

 

But also in that second episode, if we could drill down into what the average person can do, what, you know, the average person in Middle America needs to do to help educate not only themselves but others, and how to make better monetary policy for our nation. Would you be willing to come back?

 

E.J. Antoni:  Absolutely. It’d be my pleasure.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Okay. Well, that would be great. So, before we leave this episode, could you please give people the information on how to contact you? And I know you’re back at the Heritage Foundation, and so maybe you could share your email address or the website, and they would know how to find you and all of your writings?

 

E.J. Antoni:  Sure, absolutely. You can find us at Heritage.org. And there’ll be an About tab and under that, you can find staff, and I’ll be there. And all the contact info on how to reach me is on that page there.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Well, that would be great. So, again, thank you, E.J. Antoni. Thank you so much. Do you have any closing comments before we close out this particular episode? And then we can obviously follow back up in another episode. But before we close this one, do you have some things you’d like to say to employers or employees, or just regular citizens who are concerned about inflation in America today?

 

E.J. Antoni:  I think the biggest thing to just remember that I can’t hammer home enough is that inflation is fundamentally a tax. It’s, again, a hidden tax, but still a tax. And if you wonder where Congress got the trillions and trillions of dollars to spend on all these crazy COVID bills, and the so-called infrastructure and everything else, all these green energy boondoggles, where did they get all the money? They’re taking it from you right now, every time you go and you pay higher prices because it’s not like businesses are making a lot more money. They’re not.

 

In fact, the prices that businesses pay, what we call wholesale inflation, as opposed to what you and I pay, which is retail inflation, wholesale inflation has risen faster than retail inflation, for every single month of Biden’s presidency. Small businesses are getting crushed. They’re actually laying off employees right now, to try to cope with the increases in costs. So, it’s not that somehow businesses are greedy and they’re making all this money. No, we are all businesses and individuals alike. We are all paying the tax of inflation because this is how Congress is choosing to get the money to spend on whatever they want.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  That is such a good point. And, you know, I will close, too, with reminding people that government has nothing until they take it from the taxpayers. So, anytime government says, “Oh, the government will provide for this,” or you hear from leaders, “Well, we’ll give this much money,” and it sounds so generous. But actually, it comes out of our pockets and those of us who are working hard and trying to pay our taxes and, you know, keep our house payment or our rent paid, that’s where it’s coming from bit by bit by bit. They’re bleeding us and they’re siding with – oftentimes without our input where that money will be spent. So, we need to be engaged citizens and pay attention to what’s happening to our money. And we’ll explore that a little bit in our next interview. So, thank you, E.J. I look forward to having you back. Thank you.

 

E.J. Antoni:  Thank you for having me, Linda.

 

Linda J. Hansen:  Thank you again for listening to the Prosperity 101 Podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe, share, and leave a great review. Don’t forget to visit Prosperity101.com to access the entire podcast library, to order my newest book, Job Security Through Business Prosperity: The Essential Guide to Understanding How Policy Affects Your Paycheck, or to enroll you or your employees in the Breakroom Economics online course. You can also receive the free e-book, 10 Tips for Helping Employees Understand How Public Policy Affects Paychecks. 

 

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