Your humble blogger will not bore readers with another tirade about the wilful deception of governments (and lapdog economic commentators) always preferring to reference Australia’s “net” government debt position, rather than what is actually owed … the (much bigger) gross figure.
Instead, let us simply take a look at the government’s own preferred measure, in their own budget statements.
Here’s the government’s stated net debt position in the Final Budget Outcome for 2010-11 – that’s only 5 months ago:
Note that the “estimate” for net debt for the year ending June 2011, as given in the mid-May budget ($82.3 billion), was blown out by more than $2 billion just 6 weeks later ($84.5 billion).
Now, let’s look at the May budget, and the original “estimate” for net debt at year ending 2011-12:
Original “estimate”? $106.65 billion in net debt, for the year ending June 2012.
And now, 6 months later, let’s look at the latest 2011-12 MYEFO, and the revised “estimate” for net debt at year ending June 2012:
So, net debt was $84.5 billion at end June 2011.
In the May budget, it was “estimated” to reach $106.65 billion by end June 2012.
Barely 6 months later, net debt is now “estimated” to be $132.5 billion at end June 2012.
IF the government can keep net debt down to their latest upwardly revised estimate, that would be an actual blowout of 57% in total net debt … in just one year.
And it would be a 24% blowout on the Treasury #JAFA’s original “estimate” made in the May budget just 6 months ago.
The chances of this government keeping net debt down to their latest “estimate”? Based on track record, somewhere between Buckleys and none.
Finally, note that net debt is now “estimated” to not increase by more than $3 billion over the three years following 2011-12.
This prediction from the same ‘experts’ whose “estimate” in mid-May for net debt at end June, was wrong by $2 billion.
Now now dear reader … stop laughing.
That’s enough now.
Seriously … this is serious.