When Mary Meeker, formerly of pre-IPO bubble analyst fame, released her "USA, Inc." presentation last year, which assayed the US government as if it were a corporation, her conclusion was simple: the country is broke, and can not continue along the path it is on now. Fast forward to today, when the US debt balance is over $1 trillion higher, and the next edition of Mary Meeker's presentation which she released at last week's Ira Sohn conference. Her conclusion: the US is now broke-er than ever.
The summary bullets of the must read cover to cover 50 page presentation.
- America is losing its edge - some of this is inevitable as other countries improve their competitiveness, some of this is self inflicted.
- Financial strength is vital to competitiveness – it’s core to a healthy economy, job creation, vibrant education / culture and military leadership.
- Positive cash flow and a strong balance sheet are key to financial strength – bottom line, it’s bad to spend more than one brings in, as America is doing. In effect, as each day passes – with our rising losses and debt load – we rob just a little bit more from the future.
- America does not need to lose its edge, it needs conviction and leadership to move its ‘business model’ in the right direction – we are all in this together, we need to understand and acknowledge our problems and agree to move forward with collective inspiration and sacrifice.
- American tax dollars fund our government – we all need to understand where our taxes go and decide if we believe our hard-earned dollars are put to their highest-and-best use. The politicians we elect decide where our money goes.
As everyone who has worked in finance knows, the first page of every presentation is the Sources and Uses table. USA, Inc., has one two. We fail to see, however, who in their right mind would consider this a sane investment.
To be sure, the full name of the corporation should be Welfare USA, Inc. as can be seen below from the consolidated Healthcare spending for the US in context...
And the percent of households paying taxes vs those receiving government benefits. Houston: we have inversion!
Full hair-raising presentation below: