How can this be true it hasn't happened yet!
Meeting at Number Ten; November 2005
"Are we all here Deputy PM?"
"No Prime Minister there's still
quite a few missing".
"Go and have a look outside and
take the coffee fund tin with you."
"Why PM have we run out?"
"No you pillock, haven't you heard
yet? Just because you've got a key to the secret underground
passage via the cellar you obviously haven't heard the latest
news concerning our friend the Mayor."
"What's that PM? You've finally
let him join the Labour Party?"
"No you nitwit, perish the thought.
It's the "London Initiative for Minimising Pedestrians",
he's extending it."
"Is that the "LIMP" initiative
I heard about on Radio 4 PM a couple of weeks ago. I wondered
what on earth they were talking about."
"Yes Deputy PM. He's installing
extra turnstiles everywhere. There's even one at the end of Downing
Street now and it's got a credit card slot in it as well as one
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, who
as you know lives next door, was the first to fall foul of it.
When he went out this morning to get the paper everything was
fine but when he came back a chap had just finished fitting a
turnstile and he couldn't get back. He was a little embarrassed
because he was still in his slippers and dressing gown but, being
the Chancellor of the Exchequer of course, he had his credit
card in his pyjama pocket."
"So what's the problem PM? Couldn't
he just put his card in the slot?"
"He did but the turnstile machine
spat it out and the chap fitting the turnstile took it and cut
it into pieces. He said it was because of the message that came
up saying that there were no funds and he had an enormous overdraft.
I had to go out and put in 25 euro coins to let him in."
"Why didn't he use his Daimler
"Because there's been a chap at
the gate demanding 50 euros each way to go through the gate.
Last week it was 30 euros but there's been a price rise because
the number of cars in London is still going up."
"Why do you suppose that is PM?"
"It's all because of the "Developments
to Allocate Free Transport"."
"Oh yes PM the "DAFT Scheme",
that was on Radio 4 as well but I wasn't really listening."
"Well it all started at the end
of last year. The Mayor made the tubes free but by Christmas
so many people were using them the passageways jammed solid and
people couldn't get in or out. He couldn't do a U-turn so he
came up with this "LIMP" idea to charge people to use
the streets. He had turnstiles placed at the exits from the tubes
so that you'd have to pay to get onto the street. He also put
barriers across pavements with turnstiles in them. Lots of people
started to use their cars again because it was too expensive
to walk anywhere.
"In fact I heard yesterday there's
hundreds of people going round and round the circle line that
can't afford to come up to the surface. There was an appeal on
Radio 1 for food parcels for them.
There's so many turnstiles that to go
from here to Waterloo Station on foot costs 200 euros."
"I suppose I could get a new chain
for my bike PM and use that?"
"Well you could Deputy PM but remember
the Bicycles and Tandems Tax Initiative? That was the first scheme
to be introduced after congestion charging started to go wrong.
It was to deter car users parking outside London and using one
of those clever new fold-up bikes. There were so many cars parked
around London that the Mayor introduced a 250 euros bicycle tax
for anyone cycling into the City. That was the "BATTI"
"Well at least half the cabinet's
here PM that can't be bad."
"That's because they're my new
lodgers Deputy PM. I rent them all rooms upstairs. We don't need
them all, now the kids have left home. And anyway I appreciate
the few quid, sorry euros, coming in to help with the family
budget especially with this new clean air tax that's rumoured
to be coming in next month."
"What's that one PM?"
"Well there's so little clean air
in London now that we're going to be charged to use it. Either
you bring your own bottled air with you or you'll have to pay
Pass the coffee Deputy PM, before you
Sound of lots of feet stamping up the
The door bursts open and the remainder of the cabinet bustle
"About time you lot.
We've been waiting absolutely hours.
What kept you?"
"Well PM we turned up early but
it would have cost so much to get into Downing Street we decided
to teach that Mayor chappie a lesson."
"Go on Reggie. Surprise me."
"We hired a minibus and all came
through in it for 50 euros.
And it'll only cost the same to get out again because we parked
it outside your front door.
There's twelve of us and that saved us 550 euros each way!"
"Hang on Reggie. What about the
expense of the mini bus?"
"Oh yes PM I forgot. That cost
us 19.99 euros for the day. It was on special offer. It belongs
to the Shadow Transport Secretary. He said we could have it at
that rate if we took it for the month."
"Well I just hope it doesn't leave
a nasty oily patch outside my front door. I know all about that
chap's money-making schemes.
Right you lot, sit down and lets start
It's about the new Selective Income
Limitation Legislation Yardstick."
"That's a mouthful PM. What does
"Now lads and lasses what I'm going
to tell you is in the strictest confidence. No-one is to breathe
a word about what I'm going to tell you.
You've all must have realised by now
that your wages seem to be going up so fast that none of you
has to worry about money any more."
Looks towards the Chancellor of the
Exchequer. "Except you; you great wally. You can never balance
Well I had the idea we might sort of
formalise what we've been doing for years. The idea is that the
more important your job the more money you get. Sounds perfectly
reasonable doesn't it. Well we're going to have a job importance
factor, that's the "yardstick" bit. You don't need
half a brain to realise that the less you earn the less is the
importance of your job. The less you earn the less you contribute
"That's right PM. Some people hardly
pay anything. Doesn't seem fair to me. The more important you
are the more money you have to pay to maintain the standards
we've all become used to. Why should people like tramps benefit
from the wonderful new inter-city express toll-routes."
"Quite right Malcolm! So from now
on we're going to redress the balance. The more you earn the
less taxes you pay and the less you earn the more you pay. The
Labour Party has always stood for equality so there's nothing
new to this idea.
"Limitation" of tax bills
for important people, that's the aim.
You remember how we used to go about
it donkeys years ago? First we got rid of Super Tax. Then we
put a ceiling on Council Tax. Nobody really noticed except important
people like us. People generally didn't notice what we'd done
because we knocked a penny off income tax. When the Chancellor
said that would mean everyone would pay billions of pounds less
tax everyone believed him. Some of those stealth taxes were fantastic.
Hardly anyone realised what was happening. Especially when we
pinched everyone's pension. That was really super. Encourage
everyone to save money each month by paying into a pension fund
then a quick sleight of hand, a new tax here and there and we'd
extracted most of the cash for the good of the country ho ho.
Anyway now we're going to formalise
It'll be called The New Tax Credit and
it'll be calculated via tables based on the "SILLY"
factor. Remember how we used to pay low earners, what was effectively
a "cash-back" scheme. Good heavens! Some people didn't
pay income tax... we actually paid them!
Absolute nonsense! From now on everyone
will pay the same amount of tax. That's true equality. If people
can't afford to pay they can take out a loan. It's already been
tried out. Remember "Student Loans". No-one complained
too much about those. Most students felt really important going
into a bank and asking for a loan. The more they got the more
important they felt."
"How can people pay back the new
loans when they're not earning enough money PM?"
"They can get more important jobs
of course, you idiot."
"What if they aren't qualified
for an important job PM?"
"Well it doesn't seem to have affected
you does it you buffoon?"
"Let's have a quick show of hands to make it formal and
I'll get it sorted in The House tomorrow. Now we don't have to
actually turn up there I'll get an extraordinary meeting organised.
Deputy PM you go round to the Opposition and tell them they don't
have to turn up, they'll be wasting their time.
Now if that's all, pass the chocolate
digestives and you can all buzz off in your minibus."