Playing the blame game

We like to blame someone for the ills that affect us. When the price of gas at the pump skyrocketed, we blamed the oil companies for taking huge profits. When the prices in our grocery stores rose, and we saw the profits of the major grocery chains rise tremendously, we blamed the grocery stores for gouging. When it came time to renewing our mortgages, we were astonished by the almost doubling of monthly interest payments and the profits of banks and mortgage lenders.

When we had to buy new shoes and clothes for our growing children, and the prices had risen, we blamed those retail store. When we went to purchase a new vehicle, we were astounded by the increases in the costs and the fact that we had to wait in line to order the vehicle, and then might have to wait eight to ten months before we could drive it off the lot. We couldn’t even get a purchase price on that vehicle even with a $500 deposit on the chance to order it.

Back in April 2020, we didn’t feel sorry for the oil companies that were losing money when oil was $11.26 a barrel. That was back to the beginnings of covid, and the world had stopped travelling. When oil rose to $120.00 a barrel, we screamed loudly. Today at $80.00 a barrel, we still find it too expensive.

We can blame OPEC who have withdrawn two million barrels of oil a day from sale driving up their profits and creating shortages of oil around the globe. We can blame Russia for starting a war with Ukraine and turning off energy supplies to western Europe. The loss of those oil supplies then creates increases in prices for the fuel to grow crops around the world that feed us. Those loss of barrels of oil create increases in costs for the truck fuel that powers the millions of trucks that deliver the produce and vegetables to our grocery stores all adding to the increases in grocery store prices.

When inflation across the world became a huge concern, we blamed the government as if one single government was the cause of worldwide inflation. Banks borrow money from the federal government to lend to people purchasing homes, cars, furniture and outdoor boats, motors, and all terrain vehicles. When the Bank of Canada raised interest rates to encourage people to spend less and reign in spending and reduce inflation, those increases passed through banks and lending companies. That made all those purchases more expensive. A home may have dropped 10% in price in Toronto, but the doubling of interest rates, made the purchase of that home even more expensive than it was in February of this year.

Through the last two years of covid, as consumers, we have gone on a wild spending spree. It has caught up with us and today we don’t like the feeling of belt tightening. Unfortunately, not only Canadians participated in the spending spree but people in every nation in the world went wild with spending. No single government in the world can end inflation instantly. It would be wonderful if one could.

Former Publisher

Fort Frances Times