Oh it's not just gasoline. Stop by the HEB and see what that buggy full of groceries costs... compared to what it cost just a couple of months ago. Yup, you'll be putting back that brisket and package of ground beef and fetching a few packs of Ramen and maybe some chicken necks. Got your electric bill? Is your "contract" up soon? Buckle up, buttercup... my contract went from 8.8¢ to 18.5¢ per kWh... about a 110% increase. And I was using a paid search tool to find a low-priced contract. (Yeah, you have to do those things when utilities are "privatized," you know, so we get better, more efficient service for cheaper prices!)
The financial pain is real, and if you're on a fixed income, or living paycheck to paycheck with not much of an emergency pad... it's going to be a gut punch. Sure, SOME wages are increasing, and some folks are doing some job-hopping to maximize their earning potential... but gasoline and utilities double, groceries increase in double-digit %'s month to month... there is going to be some public outrage.
Some of the explanations for the current price increases are understandable, some are even reasonable. An ugly war in Ukraine is upsetting the energy cart for Europe (and the world.) Pent-up demand for goods after a two-year, worldwide business shutdown has left every kind of industry from manufacturing to hospitality scrambling for raw materials, parts, and employees. (Hey, remember when you pink-slipped all those folks and they just moved away?) Housing, a shortage that has been building (!) for years, is now at a crisis point. Need a place to live in Austin? Where the governor has been begging all those businesses to relocate to? Here's a little 2/1 starter cottage that your recent college grad can pick up for a cool 1.5 mil.
C'mon now, a steal at $1223 per square foot! With mortgage rates for a 30-year-fixed hovering around 6% and maybe 100K downpayment, you can get that monthly down to around $11,000. Perfect for that young grad and maybe 17 roommates. Hey kids, I don't want to hear any whining! Pull yourselves up by your bootstraps like we did! Oh, don't forget to figure in that student loan with an outstanding balance of 50K+. No time to party! Chin up, nose to the grindstone, uh, however that works. Sing some spirituals while you're at it. Let's hear a little "Swing Low..."
This week, we're still angry and grieving over the latest slaughter of children in our schools. They haven't even buried all of the victims from the Buffalo 'Tops Grocery Store shooting, services are beginning to take place in Uvalde. And.. this just in... did you know there were 4 dead, and 28 injured in four mass shootings in the country on Saturday, alone?
Jim Moore argues this week that our horrendous politics are made possible by the fact their consequences are hidden. What would happen to gun safety resistance if every politician were made to look at the slaughtered bodies of children?
"The Great Replacement Theory" seems to be all the rage, or for all the ragers lately. Roger Gray, diving deep to assume the role of old white guy, takes a look at the fear (and hate) mongering centered on the alleged Democratic plot for the darker ones to takeover for political gain. And your guns will be confiscated so THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO!! Trigger warning: there is a photo of Tucker Carleson in his piece.
Several months ago, "the Cajun Mantis," James Carville read the riot act to fellow Democrats. John Nova Lomax like many others has a love/hate relationship with him... And while there is a bit to unpack regarding Carville's motives, style, and strategy, it's really becoming impossible to disagree that the Dems need to get tough. Not symbolically tough, but actually mad enough to put up a serious fight. Enough with the arguments over politically correct vocabulary and woke terminology. No one, most of all Hispanics uses terms like "Latinx." It's why the people in rural America think the Dems are elitist and arrogant.
If you never got to Carville's piece, John, about as conservative as Bernie Sanders, links to the original piece and has a tough time not agreeing with him on his criticism. It IS nice to see a pundit bark out a battle plan, and not just play "on the one hand/on the other hand" games.
Myra Jolivet wants to talk about the Queen, though it has nothing to do with the Platinum Jubilee or Freddy Mercury. She's all in on bees. In addition to the fact that there is no Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit at Whataburger without them, there is also no "us" without bees. They are a barometer for the health of our entire ecosystem. And the forecast is not looking good.
Stay safe. Be kind. Spread some Texas Outlaw love if you can... forward the Newsletter to a friend, or share your favorite article on social media. And thanks for taking the time to peruse our little project here.