Letters: Conspicuous conservation, inflation

Marketplace Staff Apr 20, 2011
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Letters: Conspicuous conservation, inflation

Marketplace Staff Apr 20, 2011
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Kai Ryssdal: Our letters segment this Wednesday starts with inflation. Our report at the end of last week noted that core inflation — that’s the one that doesn’t count food or energy costs — ticked up just a tenth of 1 percent in March. We tried to explain why the government doesn’t put much weight on the price that people pay to eat and drive, and that got Peggy Martin from Pasadena, Calif., a little depressed.

Peggy Martin: It seems the very things the government doesn’t count in their inflation rate calculations are the very things that hit me and people like me right in the gut. And of course, because there is no inflation, the amount of my SSDI check will not increase.

On now to David Frum’s commentary of last week. David said most Americans think ‘not me’ when asked who should bear the brunt of spending cuts and balancing the budget. Among his examples of not me-ers, he included public employees in Wisconsin, which is when Gerri Gribi of Green Bay, whose husband is a teacher, decided she had to say something.

Gerri Gribi: Conservative commentators have repeatedly misrepresented the dispute in Wisconsin a public workers not willing to pay their fair share, when in fact, they have agreed to all the cuts Governor Walker demanded — all, not some, all. Every penny he claims is necessary to repair the budget.

Stephen Dubner and I talked conspicuous conservation on our Freakonomics segment yesterday: saving the planet, but making sure everybody knows you’re doing it. No small number of you wrote to protest, saying that you do good for the environment because it’s what’s right.

But David Rhodes from Storrs, Conn., and some others, said economists aren’t the first to figure this out.

David Rhodes: I enjoyed the story about Prius owners in eco-sensitive towns. This is not new. Any good “South Park” fan remembers the “Smug Alert” episode in season 10; a really fun look at exactly what the researchers finally figured out.

“South Park” clip: “There goes the new high and mighty Gerald Broflovski. Yeah, ever since he got that hybrid he thinks he’s better than everyone else.” “Dad can we go home? All you ever do since you got this car is drive around and show it off.”

Thanks, by the way, for all the love from all those lame mini-driving dads out there, I appreciate it. If you’ve got a comment, share it.

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