1 October 2010 (Friday) - Money Worries

I’ve been ranting quite a bit lately. Yesterday I was rattling on about how the media don’t take space science seriously. Yesterday science discovered something that might make the complacent media sit up and take notice – asteroid 2010 ST3 was discovered two weeks ago, and is on a collision course with us. Admittedly it won’t crash for a hundred years or so, but surely this will be taken seriously… No I don’t think it will be either. Which is a shame.

Another shame is the Irish economy. Or so I’m told. I don’t pretend to understand high finance, or the current economic depression. But I have a degree in mathematics so (with the help of a calculator) I can do sums. According to the figures given by the pundits, the Irish government have given or lent their banks a staggering forty five billion euros. Presumably because their banks are that much in hock. But there are only six million people in Ireland. So that works out that every single Irishman has shelled out over seven thousand Euros.
This made me think on a more personal basis. What about me? I’ve spent the last year or so listening to tales of doom and gloom about the British economy, but (I suppose) like most people, because I don’t really understand it I’ve ignored it. But I’ve done a bit of research. The hard facts are easy to find. The British debt is over nine hundred billion quid.  And that works out that each of us is in lumber to the tune of sixteen thousand quid.
How does that work? I never borrowed any of it. Who is it owed to? Can there be that much money in existence? I realise I’m a bit late to discover the reality of our country’s financial problems, but am I missing something vital here? Let’s go back a couple of sentences. I think I’ve glossed over the important point here. If we as a nation owe nine hundred billion quid, to whom do we owe it? And what would the consequences be of telling this (as yet) anonymous multi-billionaire to get knotted? Am I just a hopelessly naïve old commie to think this just illustrates the utter failure of the capitalist system.

Having said that, don’t expect me to provide an alternative. My own finances, whist probably streets ahead of that of the nation, aren’t as healthy as they might be. I spent a few minutes this morning going through my accounts. It’s probably as well that I do, but I know that I shouldn’t; it only worries me. And whilst I was at it I had a go at the contents of my letter rack too. Free broadband would seem to be a theme at the moment. PlusNet are offering me three months free. Sky are offering me six months free.
After all of last week’s fun and games finding out my electricity meter is broken, the leccie company has written to me asking me to read the thing (!) The same people, having just given me a refund of fifty quid from the gas bill also asked me to give them a gas meter reading and have put the price of gas up too. Just as well my new boiler is that much more efficient.

And after work I had a game of poker. Despite winning at least a dozen hands, I still managed to finish in last place. It’s just as well I don’t play cads for money…

No comments:

Post a Comment