We are spending too much money which we don’t own, on things we don’t need…
As a young Generation Y person I find the enormous national debt very disconcerting and I despair for my future and that of my children’s down the track. All we ever do as a nation is spend, spend and spend. However, it’s not just the government that’s contributing to our nation’s economic downfall. The average Joes and Janes on the street are just as much at fault as the government.
Figures show that Australian household debt has tripled over the last 25 years, growing at an annual rate of 10.3% which equates to over $2 trillion.
We rack up thousands of dollars of debt on our credit cards buying Chinese slave made goods. It seems that we have forgotten the ethos of our grandparents saving up for the future of their children. It might sound kind of trite or old fashioned, but saving has huge benefits. We are clearly living beyond our means. We think about the here and now instead of 10, 20, 30 odd years down the track.
According to Wealth Fundamentals : In addition to high levels of household debt, Australians also rack up high credit card debt reaching up to $50.7 billion during peak periods such as Christmas, representing an average credit card bill of $3,120.
It’s not just at Christmas time either. What about the Boxing Day sales with lines of people essentially causing our country to collapse financially by spending thousands of dollars (money they don’t own) on Chinese made products they don’t need? What about Easter?
Don’t even get me started on the thousands of dollars of credit card debt racked up by spending incessantly on footie tickets, smokes, six packs, takeaways, the latest and greatest in fashion and technology and the list could go on and on.
As Suze Orman wisely said “Bad debt is sacrificing your future day needs for your present day desires”
If you aren’t prepared, job loss, illness, injury or a relationship breakdown can cause further escalation of your already high levels of debt and that’s precisely what happens to many people today.
Despite the silver-tongued promises from both Turnbull and Shorten, it is becoming increasingly clearer that neither major parties are actually concerned about repairing the budget and lowering our debt. In fact our nation’s leaders should be ashamed for condoning excessive spending on the part of the population, let alone themselves.
In the May 2016 budget, the federal government committed to spending another $85 billion (money which we actually don’t own) on things we don’t really need.
Currently the Australian national deficit is over $470 billion which is highly unacceptable. The aggregated debt of the private and public sectors currently sits at a mind blowing $6 trillion and counting. Who’s going to pay off this insane amount of debt? It won’t be the Baby Boomers or Generation X and it’s certainly not going to somehow “magically” disappear. It’ll be left to us, Generation Y, who will inherit the full burden of repaying this enormous debt.
And really, it’s not fair when you think about it. You choose to live the lavish lifestyle of wining and dining whenever you so please; you live in a luxurious house that is way too big for your needs; you drive a posh car like a Porsche, Lambo or BMW; and then you take out loans on all this stuff but have no intention (or capability) of paying them back.
Then you die and then your children have to sort out your estate. But instead of all debts being void after your assets are sold, your kids will have to pay the bank back out of their own pockets. And thus the cycle of debt and poverty continues.
I believe there’s many things that we could do without, but as a culture we’re always trying to keep up with the Joneses (like the lines of senseless money wasters camping outside the Apple stores waiting for the new iPhone 7). I think it’s about time we stopped and had a good think about how we’re ruining our futures, our children’s futures and the future of our nation. I say we quit spending, start saving and then thank me later.