WE have lived for years with short-term political decision-making and have paid a price for such policies.
If only our political leaders of the past had been wise and used vision and foresight to put the country first.
We the lucky country enjoyed the largest resource boom in our history and spent it on tax breaks to be re-elected.
IN NEWS AROUND BATHURST:
Norway built a world class sovereign wealth fund for their people on the back of their resource boom.
They now have the largest wealth fund in the world, growing daily.
We know economic downturns are part of life. We have had three serious downturns this short century to date: the dotcom boom, the global financial crisis and now the pandemic.
The country is now saddled with massive debt that is going to take a generation to pay down.
The history of countries in debt is eventually John Citizen pays a price through unemployment, lost opportunities and austerity programs for a long time.
Note the Future Fund that was set up is not a sovereign wealth fund. Its sole purpose is to pay down liabilities for pensions for the public service that the politicians ignored for years.
There is an old saying in life that it's wise to prepare for a rainy day.
The lucky country did not prepare. We spent years building debt. Our economy is now the worst since the Great Depression, shored up by debt.
If only our leaders had been wise and put the common good of country first, ditched short-termism and banked our resource windfall, how different today would be.
Policy is easy when you are not going to be in public office to answer for the consequences in the future.