Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

My thanks to those of you who have enquired about my health. I am receiving the very best of treatment with a course of chemo-therapy, the side effects of which are best described as being like perpetual mal de mer without the benefit of an ocean voyage!
It being that time of year may I wish you all the very best for 2009. In view of the rather depressing economic news from Britain I thought it would be cheering to look a little further ahead to see what the future decade might hold for its citizens.

The news that Zimbabwe has offered financial assistance was welcomed by the man suspected of being in charge of the British government. He said that the nation was well placed to weather the financial crisis and pointed out that Britons had never had it so good. Rarely have so few had to get up and go to work in the morning, a clear indication of the value of a welfare state.
On the other hand, Bangladesh had declined to assist, saying they doubted Britain’s ability to repay a loan and President Obama vetoed the idea of incorporating them within the United States, suggesting however that Cuba might be interested in colonising the islands.

From a military point of view, Britain remained a formidable force. The Royal Navy’s one remaining ship, the former Isle of Wight ferry, was back in service, having had her boilers scraped and was patrolling the narrow seas once more.
Regrettably, the army, last heard of in Afghanistan, must by now assume to have been lost, but the air defence of Great Britain, now in the safe hands of the Southend on Sea Aero Club, was once more taking to the skies. Whenever they could afford the petrol, their Piper Cub could be spotted zooming through the wild blue yonder as the crews honed their skills with practice bombing runs on the whelk stalls on the sea front, evoking memories of the proud days of the Battle of Britain.

On the domestic front, considerable economies have been made. All Job Centres have been closed due to lack of available work and the NHS has been outsourced to a call centre in Mumbai where callers are greeted with an attractive jingle entitled: ‘Take two aspirins and call me in the morning.’ All A and E casualties are now redirected to the Red Cross caravan located near Eastbourne pier.

In place of the old banking system, households have now been issued with a plastic model donkey having a slot for coins in its saddle. The conventional piggy bank was vetoed by the Muslim majority of the population and, on reflection, it was agreed that a donkey was probably a more appropriate symbol to reflect the fiscal policies of government.
The man who is thought to be in charge of the nation’s coffers said that the nation was well placed to weather the financial crisis.

‘Jobsworth’ has now been recognised as a professional qualification with degree status and members are asked to wear their badge with pride. Some 85 per cent of the population are now official ‘Jobsworths.’

CCTV cameras are now in every home to monitor the domestic alcohol consumption and other valuable statistics for government use, and garbage collections are now made on an annual basis. The Immigration Service has been done away with as being of no value and a number of illegal immigrants, apprehended trying to leave the country, have complained that their Human Rights are being breached by making them stay.

The proposed takeover of the rail system by Hornby was rejected in that it would be taking miniaturisation too far but a dramatic improvement for travellers was made when it was discovered that, by removing all the seats from trains, more passengers could be carried. The cost of the removal of the seats was easily covered by an increase in fares.

The police are to be congratulated on their ruthless pursuit of old age pensioners who are assaulting the flower of Britain’s youth. This has had a salutary effect on this dissident section of society and means that youngsters can now roam the streets, safe in the knowledge that their human rights will be protected at all times. To encourage a community spirit amongst the young, knife sharpening classes are being held in the more deprived areas.

The woman who is rumoured to be in charge of home security has stated that the nation is well placed to weather the current crisis. She recommends that flak jackets be made mandatory for those who wish to venture out.

One continuing source of concern is the exchange value of the pound sterling to that of the euro, or for that matter, to the Zimbabwean dollar.
One solution would be to make the smallest denomination, say fifty pounds which would reduce the number of zeros to a manageable amount.

But Britons should take heart. The nation is well placed to weather the current financial crisis. And you know it must be true, for the people who are thought to be running the country all say so.

Happy New Year.