Tales of barren shelves at Christmastime have been circulating for months. Fortunately, the feared mass shortages didn’t materialize.
Three days before Christmas, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki took to Twitter to celebrate this fact. Her tweet didn’t go over well with much of her audience.
“Take that Scrooge, the Grinch and all of the doubters that this could happen,” she tweeted. “Also shelves are stocked at 90% (pre-pandemic levels are 91%).”
Many celebrated with her, cheering on President Joe Biden and crediting his administration’s efforts to fix issues with the supply chain.
“I’m waiting for all the Republicans to say ‘great job!’” one replied with apparent sarcasm.
Perhaps it was Psaki’s glib tone, or the victory lap about gifts arriving on time in the midst of a deadly pandemic, but others were less than amused.
“Weird victory lap,” commented @Armyfool1. They noted that the New York Times article Psaki included in her tweet credits consumers shopping early and in-person for keeping the predicted delays at bay.
Twitter user @OfDragonflies pointed out that Christmas gifts are easy to obtain—but at-home COVID-19 tests aren’t.
“…[A]ll our local testing sites have gone appointment only and are booked through next week,” they added. “I find this a wee bit more important than how much cheap Chinese stuff we can get before Saturday. Please help.”
Some questioned the veracity of Psaki’s claim.
“Had to visit three grocery stores last night to find a gallon of milk, but okay,” said one. Another said they’ve had trouble finding their cat’s food. An expectant mother complained that baby furniture isn’t to arrive until after the child’s birth.
Some were less concerned with stocked shelves than with inflation. “It just costs 8-40% more than it did a year ago. Thx Joe,” said one.
Still, many shared stories of being impressed with the speed and ease of obtaining supplies and gifts after so many dire warnings about shortages and delays.
“Case in point—on the morning of December 21st I ordered two exhaust fans to use on Christmas Day to help keep fully vaccinated family members safe while dining—they were delivered on the morning of December 22nd,” commented one.