The Australian dollar is the only currency that the bogan believes in. It’s the currency that last year’s designer drug can be purchased in, it’s the currency that Centrelink can be defrauded in, and it’s the currency that can be acquired in wholesale volumes when one goes to work in the mines. While Australia’s economy was doing very well through the middle of last decade, there was a problem. Other nations were also doing well, and the exchange rate of the Australian dollar was not high. This weighed heavily on the bogan’s heart whenever it proposed to venture to Thailand, Bali, Thailand, or Bali.
Having a moderately valued currency was like getting beaten at cricket by Bangladesh. Bogans were unhappy. Unable to afford yet another Contiki Tour, a meeting of bogans was convened at the local glassing barn. The first idea raised was that everyone should join the army and go invade New Zealand so at least to cripple their currency. This suggestion was received positively, but due to the fact that bogans mainly just talk about joining the army, it was not practical. The second idea raised seemed irrelevant, but turned out to be inadvertently genius. “Bugger this, I’m going to go work in the mines”, uttered one bogan from underneath its Von Dutch trucker cap. And so it was, even more bogans moved northwards and westwards to dig holes for their Chinese overlords.
Soon after came the subprime mortgage crisis in the United States, which subsequently became a debt-crisis that engulfed the developed world. But not Australia; it even avoided a recession due to the ongoing Chinese demand for Australian holes. Miraculously, the Aussie battler dollar began to rise from the canvas. Unsteady at first, it lurched past 90 US cents in October 2009, falling back again in mid-2010 due to the deferral of interest rate rises. While deferring interest rate rises pleases the bogan, deferring the inflation of the Aussie dollar displease the bogan very nearly as much. Hence, like the little ANZAC that it is, it came again, digging some more.
On Monday, 31st January 2011, the bogan woke to find the lemon-coloured morning sunlight playing whimsically on the folds of its Ultimate Fighting Championship bedspread. On this glorious day, the Australian dollar had surpassed the US dollar for the first time since its float in 1983. The bogan reclined in its bed, entertaining pleasant fantasies of magic omelettes, maxtreme tats, hair extensions and an orgy of full moon madness, not to mention monstrous bright pink Hummers costing just a week’s salary. The bogan was king of the world, right where it belonged. Chants of “Aussie Aussie Aussie, oi oi oi” could be heard rattling up the McMansion-lined avenues of suburbia.
Sensing its patriotic duty, and with the “stuff is cheap online” mantra of people who dared to disagree with Gerry Harvey rattling in its ears, the bogan jumped on its computer, and bought things from overseas websites, wielding its Australian-denominated credit card like Marshy used to do in the one-daya. To complete the forgiveness process of Tiger Woods, it purchased a $2,000 Tiger Woods Tag Heuer golfing watch. It would have cost heaps more a few months previously, and this purchase would be the perfect way to breathe life back into the abandoned “get my golf handicap below 10” new year’s resolution from 2004.
Here we see the performance of the almighty dollar over the past (almost) twenty years, and a critical point on its journey, heretofore named the ‘Wii Threshold’. This is the point, at something like 80 US cents, that the bogan has sufficient money to buy <insert appropriate imported electronic good>. Below the Wii Threshold, the bogan cannot afford the product it requires, but instead will enter into a new round of debt in order to access it. This is most likely the reason behind recent improvements in the national savings ratio. It is not due to a newfound level of austerity among the nation’s bogans trying to pay down debt; it is simply that the bogan’s discretionary spending is being funded by an undervalued greenback.
Unwittingly, the bogan’s acquisition of foreign products was limiting the dollar’s capacity to rise further, but the bogan did not care, because more holes were getting sold to China, and if Western Australia endures Queensland-esque flooding, those holes will become completely sick places to do some maxtreme jet-skiing. While Australia’s non-mining export industries (like… um… Keith Urban…) are suffering due to the value of the dollar, Keith’s problems do not register on the bogan’s radar unless expressed in song form, preferably in a duet with Bernard Fanning.
So for now, the bogan strides along the glittering promenades of its local Westfield with a spring in its step. Its Aussie dollar is totally sticking it to the yanks, its Aussie dollar is totally enabling boganism to ascend to the next level of consumption, and its Aussie dollar is currently driving BHP Billiton to develop an Olympic-standard hole in South Australia that brings with it the hope that the Australian dollar will supplant gold as the one true store of value. Unless China decides that it prefers Mongolian or Brazilian holes, but that won’t happen, because the bogan knows that Australian holes are the best in the world.