It looks like our inflation rate is higher than 4.9% reported by the government. I mean that is the sense I get from the price increases that I know about. I don't see how energy and food cost rises and dollar devaluations can be so extreme yet inflation be so low.
Last week I saw headlines about food riots. Today, there is something about Russia having less oil than everyone thought? I keep hearing stories from friends of people who bought into the idea of home equity as line of credit and now owe incredibly more than their houses are worth. A friend's brother used the equity in his home to put a down payment on a second home and 8 cars and motorcycles!!! Then he lost his job. Nothing makes sense anymore. I used to think the frugal car-free lifestyle was a good cushion against life's vicissitudes but I'm not so sure a bike is an advantage over a steel cage during food riots.