Misery Index Escalation

Ali Meyer at CNSNews reports today (19 August 2014):
(CNSNews.com) – The average price for all types of ground beef per pound hit its all-time high -- $3.884 per pound -- in the United States in July, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
And yet.  Again this morning the happy pay-no-attention-to-the-man-behind-the-curtain voice on the radio news as I drove to work was saying that the Consumer Price Index rose (ZOMG!!!11!) more than previous months -- but still "less than one tenth of one percent."   What?  The way I did the math, if that was constant, that would work out to only about 1.2% price growth per year, and about 7.4% since January 2009.  Does that sound low to you. 

But the CNSNews story goes on:

Five years ago, in July 2009, the average price for a pound of ground beef was $2.147, according to the BLS. In those five years, the average price has climbed by $1.737 per pound--or almost 81 percent.
I realize the Consumer Price Index is not all hamburger.  But look at the number  of things that have risen steeply since January 2009!  Gasoline.  Home energy.  Milk.  Eggs.  Health insurance.  Just about everything.

Month after month.

But don't worry, be happy, because: The Consumer Price Index. 

We're being gamed.

Well I guess it depends on your definition of "Consumer" and "Price" and "Index" -- doesn't it?

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