It seems as if I hear the following sentence at least once a day: Everything is so expensive now. To be clear, sometimes I'm saying that to myself. According to an October 2023 article in Forbes, "a so-called soft landing, the sweet spot between cooling inflation and a still-growing economy, appears to be a real possibility." Everyone seems fairly confident that the U.S. will narrowly avoid a recession.
We've seen this behavior before, because the economy is subject to patterned behavior. As such, experts can predict what may happen in the future based on what we've dealt with in the past. One TikToker shared inflation information from the an Instagram post. The post predicted what prices could look like in 2063. If you thought you weren't buying a house now, you really won't be buying a house in 2063.
Better start saving now, if you can even afford to save.
I don't think TikTok user @stupidrichfinance, who I am calling Rich, is trying to terrify us by addressing the possible inflation prices of 2063 but that doesn't mean the information isn't scary. "If that last 40 years repeats itself, in 2063 we'll see these prices," says Rich below a screenshot of a harrowing Instagram post from @themarkethustle.
Per the post, a new car will cost about $136,342, average rent will be about $9,272, gas will go up to $13.39 per gallon, the average home will run you $1,883,225, and the average salary could be $103,640. To be clear, this Instagram hasn't cited any sources. I have no idea where they are getting this information.
In fact, the Instagram account exists to get people to invest in the stock market. And wouldn't you know it, they'll sell you a course which teaches you how to do just that. It stands to reason that a scare tactic about inflation could be used to goad people into buying their money mastery bundle for a cool $125.
Something I find interesting, is the fact that most of Rich's finance TikToks are built around screenshots from the @themarkethustle Instagram account. If I were a betting gal, and I am not but could be in this moment, I would say Rich might be behind that Instagram account. At the very least, he's working with them.
Curious, I clicked on the linktree URL in Rich's TikTok bio and was taken to a new page that said, "The number one source of wealth and finance. Click below to get STUPID RICH." Who doesn't want to get stupid rich? I clicked and was taken to a new page that said, "This site is no longer in service or has been disabled due to a terms of service violation." That doesn't make me feel very confident about Rich's abilities.
I still wanted to give Rich a chance. Maybe he has more information than the screenshot provided. To his credit, Rich did say these numbers "might happen," and went on to reference the 2008 recession. "Ben Bernanke came out with these huge stimulus packages," and people criticized him. It's true, we did get stimulus checks in 2008.
This happened again in 2020 to offset the financial damage happening due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Here's the thing, Rich isn't attributing rising costs to inflation but rather to specific instances where we had to essentially print money to keep the economy going. The downside to that is would be rising costs when things improved.
"The next time something happens and they pivot and they print money, how much do you think it's going to be," asks Rich. If I'm following Rich's line of thought correctly, he is basing his TikTok on a phantom event. Now I'm not saying something won't happen, but shouldn't we operate under what is happening versus what could happen?
Then Rich inexplicably brings up Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Green New Deal initiative, which she proposed in February 2019 and was voted down by Congress. "AOC already said she wants to implement a $90 trillion spending initiative on climate. That should give you an idea of how much we are going to inflate this currency away," claims Rich.
I have an update for Rich. The $90 trillion price tag comes from a right-leaning think tank. Fact Check dot org said experts told them the "Green New Deal is too vague to try to estimate its cost."
Furthermore, "Sen. Ed Markey, the Democratic sponsor of the resolution, claimed that without any action climate change 'will result in 10 perdent GDP loss by 2090,' citing the National Climate Assessment. That number is an upper-end estimate, and two of the researchers who did the original study caution against using it." Rich then said we should absolutely be fracking in America as that will help lower gas prices.
To recap, Rich has cited zero sources and appears to take issue with a climate change bill while endorsing fracking. At the end of the day, let's all endeavor to question our sources.