Dear Current Account Deficit,
I read your story today and it broke my heart. Your courage moved me to tears, because your story is one I know only too well.
Like you, I wake up most mornings with a sense of dread. I’m often so afraid of what I have become, that some days I’ll just stay in bed rather than risk an accidental glance in the mirror.
I’ve tried all sorts of things to attack my weight problem: tax cuts, deregulation, even asset sales. But nothing I do makes any difference at all. Every time I measure myself I find I’m even bigger and fatter.
I let my self-loathing fester away for many years, until it slowly began to turn to anger. Then I moved into denial. I tried to tell the people around me that nothing was wrong, that it was normal for private debt to be as grossly inflated as I was. At least I’m not like all those European public debt fatties, I told people. Look at how disgusting Greece is!
But I was fooling myself. Look at me. I’m a wreck. I’ve been to see Mr English too, and he told me I would probably balloon out by another fifty-six billion dollars over the next five years. Fifty-six billion dollars!
Don’t worry, Mr English told me, you’ll still be beautiful. But how can I be beautiful when every international credit ratings agency that runs its fingers through my books ends up running away in horror?
Between you and me I’m starting to wonder if Mr English has a thing for grossly overweight economic measurements. You can be sure that next time I see him I’ll be keeping a very close eye on his inflation index.
Like you I just want to be loved. I don’t want to feel this way. But most of all I don’t want to feel lonely. When I read your story I knew I had finally found a kindred soul, a fellow voyager across the seas of economic darkness.
We must meet. Think of the gigantic fiscal holes we could create together! Imagine the astronomical deficits we could expand. Together we have the power to plunge the New Zealand economy into a terminal death spiral!
With me by your side you’ll never walk alone.
New Zealand’s External Debt