IT’S a slow day in a dusty little Australian town. The sun is beating down and the streets are deserted. Times are tough, everybody is in debt, and everybody lives on credit.
On this particular day, a rich tourist is driving through town, stops at the local motel and lays a $100 bill on the desk saying he wants to inspect the rooms upstairs in order to pick one to spend the night. The motel owner gives him keys to a few rooms.
As soon as the rich tourist walks upstairs, the motel owner grabs the $100 bill and runs next door to pay his debt to the butcher. The butcher takes the $100 and runs down the street to repay his debt to the pig farmer. The pig farmer takes the $100 and heads off to pay his bill at the supplier of feed and fuel. The guy at the Farmer’s Co-op takes the $100 and runs to pay his drinks bill at the local pub. The publican slips the money along to the local prostitute drinking at the bar, who has also been facing hard times and has had to offer him ‘services’ on credit. The hooker rushes to the motel and pays off her room bill to the motel owner with the $100. The motel proprietor then places the $100 back on the counter so the rich traveller will not suspect anything.
The traveller comes down the stairs, picks up the $100 bill, states that the rooms are not satisfactory, pockets the money, and leaves town.
No one produced anything. No one earned anything. However, the whole town is now out of debt and looking to the future with a lot more optimism. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how the Australian Government’s budget works.