How the switch from COGI to COLI turned CPI into CPlie, masking true economic struggles.


It’s an economic rollercoaster no one signed up for: the transition from the Cost of Goods Index (COGI) to the Cost of Living Index (COLI) in measuring inflation has turned the Consumer Price Index (CPI) into what critics are calling the CPlie. This shift in methodology by the U.S. government hasn’t just changed how inflation is calculated—it’s fundamentally altered perceptions of our economic reality.

Under COGI, the focus was on maintaining a constant standard of living, rooted in the actual cost of goods. But with the switch to COLI, the emphasis shifted to maintaining a given standard of living, allowing for substitutions and adjustments that may not accurately reflect real-world costs. The result? A CPI that understates the true cost pressures faced by Americans today.

Consider the numbers: since January 2021, inflation hasn’t dropped a single month, catapulting overall prices upwards by over 19.5% in less than four years—an average annual increase of 5.5%. This relentless rise has eroded the purchasing power of the U.S. dollar by a fifth, compounding the economic strain on households across the nation.

Energy prices have been particularly hard-hit under this economic regime, soaring to alarming heights:

  • Gasoline prices surged by a staggering 55.5%,
  • Motor fuel costs spiked by 55.1%,
  • Electricity bills climbed by 28.5%,
  • Energy services increased by 27.3%,
  • Utility gas services rose by 22.0%.

These hikes in essential costs directly impact families’ ability to make ends meet, painting a stark contrast to claims of a “strong” economy. With real rates of return turning negative and GDP growth stalling, the disconnect between raw economic data and the manipulated equations used to interpret it has never been more apparent.


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