Former Obama team economic official Steven Rattner has pushed back on President Biden’s explanation for the causes of the current inflation crisis in his op-ed on Thursday for The NY Times, blaming the Biden government’s enthusiastic spending instead.
Referring to a previous interview with Lester Holt from NBC, in which the president connected the record inflation to supply chain problems, Rattner said that Biden’s comments were “misleading.”
“Putting the blame for inflation on supply lines is like complaining your sweater is keeping you too warm after you have added several large pieces of wood to the fireplace,” Rattner, who was counselor to the U.S. treasury secretary under Obama, said.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI), which is one of the most-used metrics for measuring inflation, reached a 40-year record as of Jan., with energy prices and food prices particularly impacted. Rattner connected the cause of this inflation to an increase in consumer spending due, mostly, to large injections of federal money into the economy.
“The majority of our supply issues are the product of an economy that is overstimulated, not because of it,” Rattner said. “Sure, there were some Covid-related problems, like health-related worker shortages in some factories and among employees in the transportation industry. But most of our supply issues were homegrown: Americans have continued spending freely, and along the way, they created shortages akin to those in a shopping mall during Black Friday.”
“All this consumption has left us with vast amounts of government aid (including three stimulus payments) and great underspending by consumers during the covid lockdown,” Rattner said.
Rattner pushed the Biden White House to change how it deals with the ongoing inflation crisis.
“The Biden White House must shift its strategy,” Rattner said. “Especially, with the economy going along, it should make lowering the deficit as crucial as its other plans.”
Even an Obama team member gets what Biden either doesn’t or won’t admit: Money printing has caused this inflation. And that means Biden and Democrats is to blame for it. This is yet more proof that 2022 will be a blowout for the GOP.