PEEK

Inflation: Prices Rising at Fastest Rate Since 1981

Inflation is one of those things that makes the average citizen very, very nervous.

Here's a startling headline:
Wholesale prices rising at fastest pace since 1981
I'll defer to the many highly qualified economist bloggers out there on the details, but I will say that my recollection of that period is of a lot of social and cultural turmoil that led to some very undesirable political outcomes. Traditionally, inflation was actually good for average workers because it meant a rise in wages and the value of their biggest financial asset, their houses. That period featured high interest rates, high inflation and high unemployment, which was a recipe for a lot of economic angst. Clearly housing isn't going to be a silver lining this time either, and wages aren't rising so far. Lowering interest rates is the only blunt tool the Fed has to deal with inflation and that doesn't seem to be working (unsurprisingly, since the cause is the high cost of a necessary commodity.) So we are in a somewhat different economic world than 1981, but one that might just have a similar effect on the body politic.
Digby is the proprietor of Hullabaloo.