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Former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos mocked President Biden Saturday for being economically tone-deaf in threatening companies that operate gas stations to lower their prices despite facing potential losses and market constraints.
My message to the companies running gas stations and setting prices at the pump is simple: this is a time of war and global peril.
Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you’re paying for the product. And do it now.
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 2, 2022
“My message to the companies running gas stations and setting prices at the pump is simple: this is a time of war and global peril,” Biden had tweeted. “Bring down the price you are charging at the pump to reflect the cost you’re paying for the product. And do it now.”
Bezos criticized the statement, suggesting that the president was either intentionally distorting the inflation situation or speaking with embarrassing economic ignorance.
“Ouch. Inflation is far too important a problem for the White House to keep making statements like this. It’s either straight ahead misdirection or a deep misunderstanding of basic market dynamics,” the tech leader replied.
Ouch. Inflation is far too important a problem for the White House to keep making statements like this. It’s either straight ahead misdirection or a deep misunderstanding of basic market dynamics. https://t.co/XgKfEICZpk
— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) July 3, 2022
This isn’t the first time Bezos has called out Biden’s internet spouting on inflation and fiscal matters as inaccurate and misleading.
In May, Biden tweeted, “You want to bring down inflation? Let’s make sure the wealthiest corporations pay their fair share.”
The billionaire replied that Biden was wrong to conflate the inflation crisis with the mostly unrelated issue of taxing wealthy companies, which will have no substantial effect on the supply-chain imbalances and other market conditions fueling high prices.
“The newly created Disinformation Board should review this tweet, or maybe they need to form a new Non Sequitur Board instead. Raising corp taxes is fine to discuss. Taming inflation is critical to discuss. Mushing them together is just misdirection,” Bezos said.
In another tweet that drew the ire of Bezos, the president touted a record deficit decrease under his administration.
“Under my predecessor, the deficit increased every single year,” he wrote. “This year, we’re on track to cut the deficit by $1.5 trillion – the biggest one-year decline ever. It matters to families, because reducing the deficit is one of the main ways we can ease inflationary pressures.”
The Amazon chief slammed the claim, retweeting a post that corrected that the deficit dip is a result of no intentional action on the part of the administration. Rather, it was because of discontinuing pandemic aid combined with high federal receipts due to inflation, the post claimed.
Bezos also retorted that Biden’s massive spending plans have exacerbated inflation.
“In fact, the administration tried hard to inject even more stimulus into an already over-heated, inflationary economy and only Manchin saved them from themselves. Inflation is a regressive tax that most hurts the least affluent. Misdirection doesn’t help the country,” he tweeted.
Biden has come under fire by some economists and many Republicans for his accusation that the Russia–Ukraine conflict and “Putin’s price hike” are driving high prices for Americans at the pump and store. They have pointed out that the inflationary trends pre-existed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, attributable originally to a gridlocked supply chain stemming from the Western pandemic response.