Cost Of Living: The Steepest Climb

It is practically an article of faith that political platforms have major planks dealing with the U.S. economy. Yet in 1968 both the Republicans and Democrats—bothered by what seem to be more pressing problems, such as the Viet Nam war, law and order, and civil rights—paid only token attention to the economy. By so doing, they ruled out as a major political issue what has certainly become a matter for concern in almost every U.S. home: the rising cost of living.

In June and July, the cost of living made its steepest two-month climb in eleven years. Going up by...