Why Washington can’t have an honest debate about inflation

(CNN) Inflation distresses Americans for very good reasons. It depletes their wallets, creates anxiety about the future and endangers the national economy.

The political conversation about inflation, however, is not very good. In fact, it’s largely a charade, with enough artifice to go around among all the actors involved.

Republicans, as would be expected, play the role of prosecutor indicting a Democratic defendant . They charge President Joe Biden with causing a singular plague of price hikes that are “crushing” American consumers. They mock him for having assured the country, when the problem flared last spring, that inflation would be “transitory.”