October 18, 2023
With gas prices inching closer to $4.00 per gallon every day, it’s challenging to enjoy leisure activities. A movie ticket, which used to cost just a couple of bucks per person, now stands at $15.01, not even factoring in the $6 drink and $12 popcorn. This phenomenon is akin to “funflation.” While some may believe that money can’t buy happiness, in today’s economy, it seems quite the contrary.
People are willing to pay exorbitant prices for entertainment, such as Netflix, which charges $15.49 per month for a streaming service that has removed many of its popular shows. Nearly 60% of Americans claim to have curtailed their entertainment expenses due to the rising costs. It’s not just adult-oriented items that have seen price hikes; for example, a Barbie doll in 2011 was priced at $6.99, but now, if your child asks for one, you can expect to pay $15.99 or more.
The root cause of this issue is inflation. Simply printing more money doesn’t solve the problem; it exacerbates it. In reality, there appears to be no straightforward solution. Over time, prices do tend to rise, but they shouldn’t skyrocket to the extent that basic necessities become unaffordable. Many people have had to take on second jobs, including high school students, just to cover expenses like a $200 monthly phone bill or a $170 electricity bill. For most individuals, their paychecks are entirely consumed by utility bills, leaving nothing for recreational activities.