Friday 29 May 2009

Its like a pre-written letter you can send your kids

This is a pertinent snip from the linked article, today's from The Daily Reckoning.

"While your parents had control of the US government they allowed themselves a little larceny. Add the unfunded retirement and healthcare benefits they voted themselves to the official national debt and together they are scheduled to cost your generation 4 times the total annual output of the US. This is over and above the private debt they accumulated.

Some of this debt can be carried. Some will have to paid down. But as it stands, as much as $77 trillion of post-’09 earnings must be stolen from the future in order to pay for the liquor your parents drank... the bombs they dropped on god-forsaken foreigners... and the interest on their debts. So, forget about saving for a European vacation or a house of your own. Even if every penny of your savings – and every other American’s savings – are put to the task you will still be paying for your parents’ expenses all your life."

Its not quite as bad in the UK, but not much better. (Checkout that "my share of the national debt" clock to the top right of this page...) People have been voting for anyone that will give them, or someone they think is deserving of a break — maybe a few even that don't but what the hell I don't mind — something for nothing for years. The trouble is, the time has arrived for paying the price.

The only viable way out of this without going bankrupt, is to inflate away these humongous debts by debasing the currencies they're denominated in. The UK and US governments would love to simply do this, and they will as far as far as they can get away with it. But the people who have bought most of the government debt (that's China, Japan, Arabian nations, Russia and a few others particularly across the regions of the Middle East and Asia but not exclusively) are not stupid and they are not going to let the US and the UK get away with this simple and expedient option.

Its going to be interesting to follow how this is going to work out. So far, I can't see there is a way that both the creditors and the debtors can come away happy. You and I are stuck in the middle; we'll be ravaged whatever happens I strongly suspect...

Bummer. Glad to have at least a little physical insurance, but wish I could afford to store more.

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