Mises Wire

Divide and Control: Central Bankers Blame the Victims

The Central bankers of the world, apparently losing confidence that they can fix the inflation they created, are turning to Plan B: blame the people. So we fight each other.

Last week the chief economist of the Bank of England, Huw Pill, said the quiet part out loud, that “British households and businesses need to accept they are poorer and stop seeking pay increases and pushing prices higher.”

Note inflation in the UK is currently running double-digits, with grocery prices up 19% year-on-year. So not getting a raise may mean cutting a meal.

Meanwhile, a poll from a major British insurer found 57% of small businesses in Britain are at risk of closure from rising prices.

So you plebes need to drop a meal and close your family business so we can keep stealing from you.


Central Bank Divide and Control

According to the Guardian, central bankers actually have a name for this scapegoating of the masses: “Greedflation.”

As in, double-digit inflation had nothing to do with central bankers printing up trillions and handing it to governments, bankers, and—surely by accident—to the rich at the fastest pace in 50 years.

To the point that, as of last year, one in 4 pounds in existence, and almost one in 3 dollars, had been printed in the previous 3 years.


Naturally, the bankers say: Ah, but that was all sheer coincidence. What’s really happening is the people, for some odd reason, suddenly got greedy. They weren’t greedy before, you see, but now they are and it must stop.

The beauty of the “Greedflation” narrative is not only does it dodge blame for central banks’ institutionalized pillaging, it sets the masses against one another while the elite used central banks to thieve away.

They’re quite open about this: A couple of weeks ago the European Central Bank put out a tweet asking “What really drives inflation? Profits or wages?”

Get it, voter? Is it the greedy right-wing capitalists or is it the greedy left-wing unions?

They do this because *if* they can get half the country to blame the other half, the bankers and bureaucrats who actually caused the problem are off the hook. They can get back to siphoning away our life savings and future prospects while we fight.

It’s enough to make you wonder if maybe Americans, or Britons, or Europeans aren’t actually at each other’s throats. That perhaps we actually agree the system is broken, but our elite does everything they can to set us against one another.

This divide between the masses has been going on for a long time, certainly since the founding of the Federal Reserve, indeed since Western governments took on an activist role that converted them from responsible custodians of the common good—fixing potholes, dredging ports, the “night watchman” state—and turned them into existential political footballs in service to the elite to be weaponized against the masses.

They ran this playbook perfectly last financial crisis, setting the right-populist Tea Party and left-populist Occupy Movement away from the bankers who’d just pillaged the country and turned them against each other. They will, no doubt, try again.

And your part in all this? Make do with less, take one for the team, and fight against your neighbor so the elite can go on robbing all of us, and all of our children, blind.

The Mother of All Greed: Government

So what is driving inflation? It’s greed alright: government greed. In the form of trillions printed up to buy votes and bribe voters into accepting authoritarian lockdowns.

Then, when the resulting inflation tore into the people, central bankers around the world responded by hiking rates to crush the private economy. Keeping the way open for historic deficits by clearing out the rest of us.

We lose our jobs so governments can go on spending, buying votes, and rewarding their friends and sponsors.

The solution is easy. In fact, so easy it will never happen: shrink the government. Cut deficits to zero, and use the savings to fire the bureaucrats and regulators who are holding down job creation, innovation, and the small businesses that are increasingly an endangered species.

Central banks could accomplish this literally tomorrow. By simply standing up and telling their governments: “No More.” No more central bank financing of trillion-dollar deficits, no more central bank making ends meet by crushing the people.

Of course, there’s no chance of this happening. Not until voters actually demand it, either because they’re angry or because they’re desperate.

One might hope voters do get angry. Before they have nothing left to lose.

[Originally published at stonge.substack.com. Subscribe here.]

Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.
What is the Mises Institute?

The Mises Institute is a non-profit organization that exists to promote teaching and research in the Austrian School of economics, individual freedom, honest history, and international peace, in the tradition of Ludwig von Mises and Murray N. Rothbard. 

Non-political, non-partisan, and non-PC, we advocate a radical shift in the intellectual climate, away from statism and toward a private property order. We believe that our foundational ideas are of permanent value, and oppose all efforts at compromise, sellout, and amalgamation of these ideas with fashionable political, cultural, and social doctrines inimical to their spirit.

Become a Member
Mises Institute