Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Guam’s budget and the Eat Me Cake

I saw Alice in Wonderland in 3-D and absolutely loved it. Well, we all know how it ended for Alice (plot spoiler), after she slays the Jabberwocky. She’s out of the rabbit hole, and off for new adventures.

But Alice never made it to her intended destination.

Alice was shipwrecked on Guam and she takes a job with Gov Guam where she subsequently hires the Mad Hatter to help run its finances.

But the bills weren’t being paid! The Mad Hatter – pointing to his watch – says it will be best to delay tax refund payments.

Why, this watch is exactly two days slow,” explains the Mad Hatter.

[The deficit is being financed primarily by delaying the payment of income tax refunds, which totaled $278M at the end of FY 2008. (Guam Public Auditor Performeter Analysis).]

But then the Duchess of Debt arrived.

The more there is of mine, the less there is of yours,” says the Duchess of Debt.

[Or as the public auditor reported: At the end of FY 2008, the government of Guam’s net asset deficiency increased by $78.2M (59.4%) from the prior year’s $131.5M, indicating a continued deterioration of its financial condition. The increase in the deficit was due to an increase in expenses of approximately $100M, while revenues increased only by $14M.]

Let me see: four times five is twelve, and four times six is thirteen, and four times seven is -- oh dear! I shall never get to twenty at that rate!” says Alice, after reading the report.

Alice then reaches for the Eat Me Cake for help, with its special powers developed by the U.S. military.

Well, I’ll eat it,” said Alice, “and if it makes me grow larger, I can reach the key; and if it makes me grow smaller, I can creep under the door: so either way I’ll get into the garden, and I don’t care which happens!

And the Garden does arrive, delivered by 8,000 Marines who help solve the budget problems.

The Mad Hatter says to Alice, “You used to be much more … ‘muchier.’ You’ve lost your muchness.”

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