A buddy owns an electrical contracting shop. He writes:
“14/2 shot up about 50% since the inauguration. It doubled since last
week. It was running about $38 a roll last summer. It hit $92. And
the word is that there will be shortages. Suppliers are limiting
customers to 60% of normal inventory. I had a few bids out. I may
need to pull them. For certain I won’t be in a hurry to write a lot of
For those who don’t speak Electrician, 14/2 is the size of plastic-clad
copper electrical wire used in Minnesota homes for common household
circuits (15 amps). Busy electricians go through miles of it every
year. The smallest change in price can upset the bid price. So why is
the price of wire spiking now? Why are shortages looming?
Turns out, the plastic coating of the wire is made from PVC which is
made from natural gas, which is extracted from leases on federal lands,
which the Garden Administration terminated by Executive Order to reverse
President Trump’s policy of American energy independence, because
anything the Bad Orange Man did was Bad and must be ended, regardless of
how much it costs. It’s a moral imperative. Sometimes you have to
destroy a civilization in order to save it.
The first order effect of ending leases was to signal their virtue.
The second order effect is to make crude oil and natural gas less
plentiful domestically thus requiring the use of higher priced imports,
which push futures prices higher for gas and oil and PVC, which causes
higher prices for consumers of those products (such as electrical wire).
The third order effect is a slow-down in travel and home construction,
as higher prices push marginal customers out of the market.
The fourth order effect is lower tax revenues from reduced sales of gas,
wire and homes.
The fifth order effect is higher income taxes on the middle class to
offset the tax revenue lost in other areas.
We’re seeing it happen in real time. We know what’s coming. Why are we
the only ones who notice, the only ones who care?
To answer Joe’s question – because the “progressive” pols running the show today don’t care, and their voters aren’t smart enough to know better.