- While we’re talking about documents that govern our lives but, that no one understands, how about the Consumer Price Index. So, what is it and why does it matter? Well, here’s how the gov’t defines it: The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measure of the average change over time in the prices paid by urban consumers for a market basket of consumer goods and services.
- Ok, that sounds pretty straight forward doesn’t it? We should see from this definition why the cost of goods, we buy as consumers, go up or down (which never happens).
Question: What goods and services does the Consumer Price Index (CPI) cover?
Answer: The CPI represents all goods and services purchased for consumption by the reference population (Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers or Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers). The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has classified all expenditure items into more than 200 categories, arranged into eight major groups. Major groups and examples of categories in each are as follows:
- FOOD AND BEVERAGES (breakfast cereal, milk, coffee, chicken, wine, full service meals and snacks);
- HOUSING (rent of primary residence, owners’ equivalent rent, fuel oil, bedroom furniture);
- APPAREL (men’s shirts and sweaters, women’s dresses, jewelry);
- TRANSPORTATION (new vehicles, airline fares, gasoline, motor vehicle insurance);
- MEDICAL CARE (prescription drugs and medical supplies, physicians’ services, eyeglasses and eye care, hospital services);
- RECREATION (televisions, cable television, pets and pet products, sports equipment, admissions);
- EDUCATION AND COMMUNICATION (college tuition, postage, telephone services, computer software and accessories);
- OTHER GOODS AND SERVICES (tobacco and smoking products, haircuts and other personal services, funeral expenses).
Also included within these major groups are various government-charged user fees, such as water and sewerage charges, auto registration fees, and vehicle tolls. The CPI also includes taxes, such as sales and excise taxes, that are directly associated with the prices of specific goods and services. However, the CPI excludes taxes, such as income and Social Security taxes, not directly associated with the purchase of consumer goods and services.
Here’s my question: When a box of cereal, let’s say Wheaties, costs $2.98 for 16 ounces (18.7 cents per ounce)in January, now in December, it costs $3.00 so the CPI says it was a marginal increase of .07% increase for the year. Not much, huh? BUT! The same box, is now only 14.2ounces or (21.1 cents per ounce) does the CPI calculate that difference? My guess is no. Many of these goods in the market basket probably change like that over time. Gas has such large season swings that it tends to offset the increase in goods and make the whole basket look less expensive than it is. Well, my point is that the CPI is not on the radar for my opponents. Frankly, they don’t consider it and better yet they don’t care.
- Second question: If this CPI only covers urban consumers, what happens to rural consumers? I guess they don’t use any of the above products? or maybe, they just don’t count! Jen and Mark, you’re off the hook because you’re not urban. Technically, Bountiful is not an urban area but it is considered an urban cluster so, I think mom and I, and Justin and Emily, Troy and Kelsi, and soon, Kelby and Mallory will be in an urban cluster or rural too. So, don’t worry about inflation either, because it doesn’t affect you either.
Dear Citizens, Countrymen, Countrywomen and anyone else interested in knowing why Pluto should still be considered a planet, in my humble opinion;
First, an update on the status of my financial contributions and the success of my campaign. While many of my colleagues and competitors in this Presidential campaign require large sums of money from their Political Action Committees (PACs) and Billionaire donations to survive the long, grueling months ahead, I can assure those who support me that my campaign will remain solvent from start to finish. I will not require last minute donations from supporters and I will not go into debt, as many of those running for this esteemed office, have encountered in the last 10 elections. As a result, I will not be beholden to any PAC and I will not find myself in a position to give VIP appointments (i.e Ambassador to the Tibetan people in the Himilayas) to those who have given me a billion dollars.
The reason I have this distinct pleasure is that, so far, my total received revenue, which by the way is audited by the venerable (Deloitte, Touche and Tohmatsu Accounting firm) is $0.00 dollars. My total expenditures, to date, are $0.00.
Now, for the Real Donald speech of the week;
As I mentioned last week, a key to fixing this mess we are in nationally, is to be fiscally responsible. We can’t continue to spend, spend, spend and then consider increasing taxes to our citizens. Here are some interesting facts for the American people to consider and our politicians to digest.
1) The federal tax code was 400 pages in 1913. In 2010 it was 70,000 pages.
2) The Bible has about 700,000 words. The number of words in the Federal Tax Code: 3,700,000.
My take on that: If God can say everything He needs to tell us in 700,000 words than why would it take 5 times that many words to tell us we basically work for the government. We need to simplify. By the way, who actually understands this code anyway? Any chance for a mistake to be made?
If you ask me, the following individuals should be in a Market Research Study. They should be included in a Focus Group and they should be asked questions about “What do you think about the CPI?” You’ll want to seen this one1
Well, where does all this lead me in the “Real Donald” campaign? Simply said: The other candidates are barking up the wrong tree! They are addressing the wrong issues. The issues I have listed each week, are the issues most voters are looking to us, as candidates, for answers.
The banner that is unfurled, should include the issues, I have listed.
As a concluding remark for this week. Why does everyone keep picking on Pluto. First, they say it is a planet, then they say it isn’t. Here’s why:
This group decided that Pluto was not really a planet because of its size and location in space. So Pluto and objects like it are now called dwarf planets. Pluto is also called a plutoid. A plutoid is a dwarf planet that is farther out in space than the planet Neptune.
Did they just discover that Pluto was small? I thought they knew this decades ago. Did they just discover that Pluto is way out there? Past Neptune? I thought they knew this too. Are these scientists just discovering science?
I do have to admit that I think it is nice that Pluto is now called a plutoid. That name has a “catchy” ring to it.
In my Presidency, Pluto will be returned to its rightful status as a planet. Maybe, I’ll also require those choosing to become citizens of the USA to define plutoid. Maybe, anyone who wants to vote in the upcoming election should be required to define plutoid?
And, besides that, Disney named one of their favorite dog characters after the planet Pluto. What other planet in our system has that distinction.
Vote: The Real Donald in 2016, it will make you happy!