The Biden administration can’t escape the blame for higher prices. And that’s why it must try to redirect voters’ anger.

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon mentioned “inflation” more than 20 times in his annual report to shareholders, released Monday. And he warned that the Federal Reserve’s response — raising interest rates to cool spending — could lead to more misery, in the form of stagflation, rather than the relief Americans want.

“Economically, the worst-case scenario would be stagflation, which would not only come with higher interest rates but also with higher credit losses, lower business volumes and more difficult markets,” Dimon warned.

And he warned that Washington policies are hurting American families: “The people who suffer the most, throughout all of this, are not high-income individuals.”

But that’s the point. The message from progressives is clear: They want working- and middle-class Americans to buy less, to demand less, and to expect less.

For example, Joe Biden continues to struggle with his administration’s belated response to the very real pain that inflation has caused American families. His response has been to deny, deflect — and then double down on the misery index.

Denial didn’t work, so Democrats quickly dropped “Bidenomics” from their vocabularies.

Next, they turned to deflection. On the campaign trail, Biden has tried to blame corporations for “shrinkflation” that is part-and-parcel of rising costs.

Yet, his calculated move to deflect blame from his own fiscal policies that have kept inflation high, and to metaphorically shrug his shoulders in the face of it, fell flat.

In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that less than 2% of overall price increases could be blamed on shrinkflation.

As the Heritage Foundation’s E.J. Antoni notes, businesses are hurting under Biden administration policies, too.

“The producer price index is used to measure inflation on the products and services businesses buy — sometimes called wholesale inflation — and that index has risen 17.5% since Biden took office,” Antoni adds. “Conversely, the consumer price index, the widely cited metric for inflation faced by American families, is up 17.1% over that same time.”

The Biden administration can’t escape the blame for higher prices. And that’s why it must try to redirect voters’ anger.

But the liberal “shrinkflation” agenda is more than just higher prices. We’re seeing a whole-of-government approach to increasing our misery coming out of the Biden administration by forcing average Americans to sacrifice their quality of life and comfort for the progressive agenda.

It’s not only the Biden administration demanding that we expect less. It is working to deliver less. Here are just a few examples:

  • Appliances, NPR warns, are becoming a “culture war target” because they don’t actually work well under Biden administration policies. The truth, according to Fox News, is that “recent energy regulations proposed or finalized by the Biden administration would, on average, make water heaters cost $2,800 more, gas stoves as much as $3,250 more expensive, air conditioners $1,100 more expensive, and gas furnaces nearly $500 more expensive.” And consumer groups point out that the new appliances “are often less effective than their predecessors.”
  • Love your truck? Don’t get too attached. As the Wall Street Journal’s Kimberly Strassel warns, “Biden is coming for your truck.” But Americans know that “no Tesla is going to function in the bitter cold of a Wisconsin or Alaska winter; no Ford Lightning will manage the work of a Montana ranch or a Kansas farm.”
  • And finally, what’s up with the bugs? Why are the elites so obsessed with normalizing “insect protein” while finding ways to backdoor ban steaks and seafood for the rest of us?

The Biden administration began its tenure with a call for lowered expectations. A seemingly coordination PR campaign in the national media tried to convince Americans that the fault lies with them — not with the underperforming federal government.

And now, as the November elections draw closer, the Biden administration is escalating the policies that have made life tougher for American families.

But this shrinkflation sacrifice is planned for ordinary Americans by their “betters,” the wealthy liberal elites setting these policies. Don’t expect the progressives in power to give up their private jets, their second and third vacation homes, or their pristine ocean views at their beach houses.

The progressive elites will never make the same sacrifices. Those sacrifices are only for the rest of us.