As anyone who’s filled up their gas tank recently knows, spiraling prices for everything from gas to groceries have taken a real bite out of Americans’ wallets. So what’s going on?

The pandemic is certainly part of it. So is fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which is sending prices for oil and wheat spiraling upward. And as Payal Sinha explains this week, a major federal backlog in issuing immigrant work visas is holding back the economy and causing immeasurable damage to immigrants who can no longer support themselves or get health care as a result.

But there’s something else going on, too.

This week in OtherWords, Groundwork Collaborative director Lindsay Owens shares some of her group’s remarkable findings on price hikes: In call after call with investors, corporate executives are actually bragging about raising prices under the guise of “inflation.” They’re suggesting to consumers that these hikes are unavoidable, even as they rake in larger and larger revenues and profits.

The answer, Lindsay explains, is regulation. Fortunately, the Biden administration, congressional Democrats, and state officials are now rolling out plans to crack down on this corporate price gouging.

Will any Republicans join? Jim Hightower thinks it’s unlikely. This week, he writes about the party’s last major inflation initiative — sending buttons to consumers! This time, they’re not even offering buttons.

Finally, speaking of Ukraine, Brian Wakamo writes about the importance of the global sports boycott now unfolding in response to Russia’s invasion. Could it actually help end the war? (And if you missed Phyllis Bennis’s vital piece on diplomacy last week, please check it out this week!)

New This Week…

It’s Not Just Inflation — It’s Price Gouging | Lindsay Owens
Corporations are using “inflation” as a cover to hike prices and record record profits. We’ve got the proof.

The Federal Backlog That’s Hurting Immigrants — and Our Economy | Payal Sinha
1.4 million immigrants are stuck waiting on work permits, threatening their ability to survive.

Can Global Sports Boycotts Help End the War in Ukraine? | Brian Wakamo
The power of sports to legitimize a regime means they have the power to delegitimize one, too.

The GOP Has Nothing to Offer on Inflation | Jim Hightower
Republicans are beating up Joe Biden for rising prices while blocking efforts to do anything about it.

Democracy, First and Foremost… | Khalil Bendib
… In Ukraine, anyway!

In Case You Missed It…

The Best Way to Help Ukraine Is Diplomacy, Not War | Phyllis Bennis
Every war eventually ends with diplomacy. The question is how long the killing goes on before the diplomats stop it.

Biden’s Economic Plans Are Solid, But We Need Action | Sarah Anderson
The president’s SOTU address tasked Congress with an ambitious agenda, but Biden needs to do much more on his own.

I’m a Christian Mom and I Love My Trans Daughter | Kimberly Shappley
I’m a lot like you — except my state wants to investigate me as a child abuser simply for supporting my kid.

GOP Hostility to Ketanji Brown Jackson Goes Beyond Hypocrisy | Mitchell Zimmerman
Republicans complain about “reverse discrimination” on the Supreme Court. Their real complaint is against constitutional democracy.

 

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Peter Certo

Peter Certo is the editorial manager of the Institute for Policy Studies and editor of OtherWords.org.

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