As Time Passes

Here is something interesting that reinforces the impact of inflation since 1950: in 1950, using Penn State prices, one year of college tuition, fees, board and books cost $1,365. In 2021, one year of college tuition, fees, board and books costs $39,084. The college industry has  increased inflation by 54 percent or in terms of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) today it takes $1,660 to buy what $150.00 bought in 1950.

This is nice to know information but with little insight until it is compared to wages. The average annual rate of inflation since the 1970s is 3.3 percent; for wages it is -5.1 percent. In street terms, a dollar in wages in 1978 is worth only 68¢ today. Perhaps this may be the reason there is insurrection across the land.

Waxing philosophically, it is technology that changes the behavior of economics – from the first axe with a handle, to spears, to wind, to steam, to internal combustion to artificial intelligence – financial opportunity shifts dramatically giving those with resources a chance to restructure assets while those without resources suddenly are without stability or even individual purpose.

At this moment we are in a time of rapid social and economic change. Worse, our society is managed by governments functioning as they did in 1978.

Ancient Mariner



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