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Another day older and deeper in debt.

The UK debt now stands at over £1 trillion. That’s £17,297 for every man, woman and child in the country.

That’s £38,024 for every person in employment.

The interest on this debt is more than £40 billion per year.

This year every household will pay £1,924 in taxes just to pay that interest.

Debt is nudging 80% of GDP, around 25% higher than it was five years ago.

This isn’t a new thing as the debt at the end of the Napoleonic wars at the beginning of the 19th century was 200% of GDP. It was similarly high after the First World War.

Some of the money borrowed from the USA at the time of WW1 has never been repaid or officially written off.

The final installment of debt payable to the USA for money borrowed during WW2 was paid in 2006.

When the UK was forced to go cap in hand for a bail out to the IMF in 1976, the proportion of debt to GDP was around 65%

Here is a rough sketch of where your money as a UK taxpayer (and if you live here, that’s everyone who buys anything) goes.  Interesting that ‘England’ doesn’t get a cost mind you!

uk debt

You know, I think there might just be another financial crisis looming. One which will make 2008 look like a Sunday School picnic.


Number Crunching

One hundred and thirty eight million

1) The number of taxpayers in the USA.

2) The number of pounds that Eddie Stobbart sold the best known haulage company in the UK for in 2007.

3) The number of Sony Playstation 2 consoles sold worldwide.

4) The number of dollars that Jeff Bezos CEO of Amazon has just sold a million shares in the company for.

5) The number of pounds that Portsmouth FC are in debt.

Portsmouth’s average attendance at home matches is 16,497.

Some people are waking up and smelling the coffee about the economy and what it means for fitba’. Others are carrying on with similar abandon to previous seasons.

In these tough economic times, how many fans will see attendance at football, or the £50 a month to Sky, as a luxury they can do without?

S P Hell

It was the most unsurprising news of the weekend. A not very good team (Rangers) won the SPL by being not quite as bad as the other teams. It is with some interest and no little amusement that this supporter of a wee team reflects on the various twists and turns in the Scottish game over the last 36 years.

1974 – The 18 team top league format is killing the game. We need to change to a top league of ten or the Scottish game will die! (proceeds to bugger about with a 10/12 format over the next 36 years)

1998 – The clubs with the most money don’t have enough money. There is too much financial threat for big teams being relegated so were limiting that to one team. We’re forming the SPL so that the big clubs can proceed to waste their entire income on a seemingly endless stream of foreign diddies who couldn’t get a game on a public park in Polmadie get more of the money coming into the game. Top clubs will now require a 10,000 all seater stadium to compete in the top league. This recipie for financial ruin These measures will ensure the future of the game and allow our top clubs to compete in Europe. If we don’t do this the Scottish game will die!

2004 – Clubs are going bankrupt building 10,000 seater stadia. The requirement is now 6,000. This applies to all clubs even if they never fill the ground. We need to do this or the Scottish game will die! (The Old Firm – “We need to ditch the rest of you and bugger off to England or we’ll die!”)

Various stages – We need a winter break/ we need a split/ we need summer football/ we need to ditch foreign diddies/ or the Scottish game will die! We need this TV deal from Setanta. The deal offered by Sky is derisory. (The Old Firm – “We need to ditch the rest of you and bugger off to England/North Atlantic or we’ll die!”)

2008 – We need to take this TV deal which is a fraction of the derisory Sky deal or the Scottish game will die! (The Old Firm – “We need to ditch the rest of you and bugger off to England/North Atlantic/Faroes/Anywhere or we’ll die!”)

2010 – We need to expand the top league from 12 to 18 teams or the Scottish game will die!
(The Old Firm consider an offer to play each other in Boston and wonder if there are perhaps 35 other venues worldwide where this format would succeed)

Yeah. So basically the top teams have had 34 years in which they have contrived to gather more and more income for themselves at the expense of smaller clubs.

In doing so several of them have gone into administration. The club which has just won the league are over £30 million in debt and are a financial basket case. Several others have the kind of debt which it is very difficult to see any way that they can trade out of.

The two top clubs would drop everything and run never to be seen again at the drop of a hat. This would be true even if it were via an invite to play in The Football League Two.

Thank goodness though that the changes listed above were enacted. Even if the game hadn’t have died it would surely be in very serious trouble.