Why Is the Cost of Living so Unaffordable? by Charles Hugh Smith

The two sectors of the economy whose costs have risen the fastest the past couple of decades have been education and medicine. That surely has nothing to do with the government’s extensive involvement in education and medicine. From Charles Hugh Smith at oftwominds.com:

Strip away the centralized power that protects and funds cartels, and prices would plummet.

The mainstream narrative is “the problem is low wages.” Actually, the problem is the soaring cost of living. If essentials such as healthcare, housing, higher education and government services were as cheap as they once were, a wage of $10 or $12 an hour would be more than enough to maintain a decent everyday life.

Here are some examples from the real world. In 1952, it cost $30 to have a baby in an excellent hospital. If we adjust that by official inflation as measured by the Bureau of Labor Statistic’s inflation calculator to 2017, the cost would be $275. ($1 in 1952 = $9.16 in 2017).

What does it cost to have a baby delivered in a hospital today? $5,000? $10,000? Who even knows, given the convoluted billing process in today’s sickcare system?

The pharmaceutical cartel jacks up medication costs per dose from $3 tp $600, even when the medication has been around for decades: the Pinworm prescription jumps from $3 to up to $600 a pill Parents, doctors angry over drug price gouging (via John F.)

My father paid 1.8% of his wages for “hospital group insurance” in the early 1950s (for a household of four kids and two adults.) For someone earning $1,000 a week, the equivalent today would be $72 a month out of a monthly gross income of $4,000.

My spouse and I pay $1330 a month for barebones healthcare insurance in today’s sickcare system. Factor out subsidies paid by the employer or state, and minimal healthcare insurance costs tens of thousands of dollars per household annually.

To continue reading: Why Is the Cost of Living so Unaffordable?

Advertisements

2 responses to “Why Is the Cost of Living so Unaffordable? by Charles Hugh Smith

  1. Unnecessary regulations have granted monopoly supplier status on most goods, and the suppliers are enjoying that.

    Like

    • Well put. I saw it in the securities industry, where after 2008-09, increased regulation became a cost of business for larger firms, and a way for them to put smaller firms out of business.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s