Saturday, 25 April 2009

Do You Want To Spy On My Gang?

Strathclyde Police are mounting a full-scale containment exercise in Edinburgh tonight, as they try to corner Matilda Gifford - the vicious air-pollution protester who callously shot down their reputation in cold blood today, killing stone dead any remaining vestiges of public trust in the guardians of law and order.

The 24-year-old desperado burst savagely into the Guardian this morning and unleashed a hail of recordings of ham-fisted attempts by officers from the Strathclyde force to recruit her as a paid informant. Assistant Chief Constable George Hamilton IV barely had time to shout, "Look out, she's got a digital voice recorder!" before he was brought down by a deadly burst of rapid-fire questions from Scottish Lib Dems, Labour and the Scottish Green Party, demanding to know exactly how and when the police became the secret police.

Meanwhile, police south of the border are facing accusations of watching the wrong people, as it emerged that as many as 2,800 criminal gangs are active in England and Wales - a significant increase on than the previous estimate of 1,000.

"Nothing to see here," said Home Secretary Jacqui Smith. "The traditional gangs, such as the Mafia, the Triads, the Yakuza, the Camorra, the Viet Cong and the Ant Hill Mob - whose everyday activities include people trafficking, child slavery, drug-dealing, prostitution, kidnapping. fraud, murder and extortion - are well known to us. Let me take this opportunity to reassure them that, as long as they keep to their council-estate patches and stay off the front pages of the dailies, they are free to go about their unlawful business as usual."

"The large increase in the number of criminal gangs is simple to explain," she continued smoothly. "It's all these bloody protesters who are responsible for this apparent increase. They're smart and well-organised - and their tentacles are now spreading alarmingly from small, easily-controlled groups of anarchists meeting in the back of the pub, and reaching into the tender hearts of Middle England. The police have a clear duty to protect the vulnerable British public from being terrorised in their homes by inconvenient facts like climate change, air pollution, erosion of civil liberties, tuition fees, police brutality, social exclusion and greedy capitalist bastards."

"Let me reassure the public that we will leave no law unturned in our crusade to free Britain from the awful, gnawing fear of Plane Stupid, No2ID, The Free Society, Liberty, the Taxpayers Alliance, the Freedom Association, FOREST, the Countryside Alliance and the dreaded Salvation Army," she added. "Even if it takes us a thousand glorious years."

Save Us, Dr WHO

The world was told to put its affairs in order and wait calmly for death, as one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse was formally identified in Mexico by experts from the World Health Organisation.

"No doubt about it, it's definitely Pestilence," said the organisation's chief, Margaret Chan, who fearlessly flew from the United States to front-line Geneva to take personal charge of valiant-but-futile WHO efforts to contain the swine-flu pandemic which has already claimed the lives of an estimated 68 Mexicans. "And if you come across him, then Famine, War and The Other One can't be far behind."

In recent decades the world's population has been reduced to a handful by a succession of cataclysmic disasters. Overwhelmed by AIDS, Hong Kong fluey, necrotising fasciitis, the Ebola virus, mad cow disease, SARS, Dutch Elm Disease, beak rot, the screaming shits and all-out invasion by the Sov-Blok forces of crazed War Marshal Kazan, the scattered remnants of humanity now huddle in the crumbling ruins of their shattered cities, numbly awaiting the inevitable end of all life on the planet.

Meanwhile, in Mexico City of the Dead, millions of people put on cycle masks, avoided large crowds and cautiously went about their daily business, tragically unaware that they were already festering, flyblown corpses lying unburied in the streets.

The pandemic is expected to turn Britain into a desolate charnel-house early tomorrow morning, when the Mail on Sunday will expel toxic headlines from every orifice, infecting millions.

Friday, 24 April 2009

More Serotonin, Please

There was widespread joy among parents of moping teenagers today, as researchers at Bristol University announced that - contrary to the recommendations of pharmaceutical industry regulators back in 2003 - shovelling anti-depressants down the throats of the under-18s by the bucket-load does not actually increase the risk of suicide after all.

"Our study of SSRI use by the target age group took place over a sixteen-year period," said study leader Dr Strangelove, "And the suicide rate wasn't affected in the slightest after the restrictions were put in place. So the message to anxious parents is clear: mums and dads can get back to pumping their whining brats full of citalopram right now."

According to doctors, today's teenagers are experiencing an unprecedented tidal wave of depression as, in addition to nobody understanding what they are going through - namely acne, bum fluff and a tragically-unrequited passion for Bob Dylan - they have just learned that they are expected to pay for Gordon Brown's inability to see any connection between the words 'banker' and 'greedy' for half of their entire working lives.

Spare A Thought For The Real Victims of Recession

A shaken Sir Bob Geldof has announced the launch of Rich Aid - a star-studded charity fundraising concert set to take place this summer in Britain and America - as it emerged today that several of his obscenely rich showbiz friends are now slightly less obscenely rich as a result of the global economic downturn.

"Oi turned on de fockin' enormous plasma telly wall in me kitchen dis mornin'," said Sir Bob angrily, "An' oi wuz fair put off me cornflakes by de dismal soight o' Sir Elton John, Robbie Williams an' Sir Tom Jones pitifully scrabblin' in de dusty depths o' der fockin' wallets lookin' fer traces of a fifty-pynd note. Oi couldn't jus' sit der an' do nuttin', so oi got on de ole Blackberry an' swore at some o' me famous mates till dey agreed dat we got to do sumptin' to alleviate dis unfoldin' fockin' tragedy before it claims even more millions."

Poor, flyblown Sir Elton is estimated to have lost 26% of his meagre fortune, leaving him unsure of how he will eke out his last £175m - while a frail Sir Tom Jones fears that his twilight years will be cruelly cut short this winter, after the value of his portfolio plummeted by 24% to a miserable £130m. Meanwhile, Sir Paul McCartney cried helplessly as he watched his shares and properties slump by a tragic £60m, leaving the senile former Beatle with barely 44 billion pennies to rub together.

Some stars have been left even more perilously close to the breadline, however. A £25m slump in the value of his investments has left a naked, pot-bellied Robbie Williams staring uncomprehendingly at the paltry £80m balance on his bank statement, while Sir Cliff Richard was begging God not to forsake him after hearing from his accountant that £10m had been wiped off his net worth, leaving him afraid that a starving Robbie Williams might well buy and eat him.

"Oi beg der British public not to look away from dis awful soffrin'," urged Sir Bob. "Give us yer fockin' money!"

"An' dis time, oi really do mean 'us'," he added.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Darling Discovers Obscure Economic Theory: Socialism

In a budget speech which sent the last remaining Britons hurrying for the airports with hastily-stuffed suitcases, a desperate Alistair Darling today announced the long-dreaded return of radical hard-left socialism.

"I was just running this speech through the spell-checker this morning," the Chancellor told the House of Commons, "When I heard something about the death of Jack Jones on the radio. Apparently there was a Labour Party long before Tony Blair came along - and even more surprisingly, I remembered that I used to belong to it. I dug out my scrapbook, and found all sorts of stuff I'd long since forgotten, like having a beard. I used to look like Noel Gallagher in a Moss Bros suit, I tell you! Ha ha - er... anyway, I remembered that back in Lothian in the year dot we all used to have a high old time chanting 'Tax the rich!' and I thought - well, why not? It won't make a bugger of a difference to the enormous yawning chasm of debt which the grumpy sod next door's dropped us all into, but it might look good in the Sun tomorrow - after all, it's not like Rupert Murdoch pays tax, is it?"

"The only problem I could see was: where do you draw the line?" continued Mr Darling, as MPs yawned and nodded off on the back benches. "Who can you hit for more tax without the Daily Mail screaming blue murder and calling the middle-class rent-a-mob out onto the suburban streets? Then I remembered that I'm on the standard ministerial salary of £137,579 - which might still go up a bit, if we can slip it through while nobody's looking - and in a moment of inspiration it dawned on me that anybody on more than 150 grand a year is a thieving capitalist bastard who deserves to be hit for half he's worth."

At this point the Prime Minister (salary: £188,848pa) suddenly leapt to his feet with an inarticulate cry and tried to wrestle the Chancellor of the Exchequer from the dispatch box. Mr Brown was swiftly seized and dragged from the chamber, screaming, "You tufty-faced communist bastard!"

As guffawing Tory MPs linked arms and sang the Internationale, sweating members of the Labour front bench were seen to be nervously texting their offices to check how much they were getting paid for their various declared interests.

Mr Darling, meanwhile, spent the rest of the afternoon drawing meaningless graphs on a flipchart and referring Britain to the tables in Appendix C.

Pakistani Students May Be Deported Under Prevention of Foreigners Act

After Greater Manchester Police admitted they had released without charge all 12 men arrested under suspicion of plotting the bombing of the Arndale Centre, Manchester Airport and Bez from the Happy Mondays, it has been announced that the government may deport 11 of them anyway, for being unspeakably and wilfully foreign in a public place.

The 11 Pakistanis, ten of whom who were legitimately in the UK on student visas, are now in the custody of the UK Border Agency.

"We are seeking to remove these men on the grounds of national security," said Gordon Brown's spokesman. "Where a foreign national poses a threat to the country, we will seek to exclude or deport them as appropriate. Alternatively, when we find they pose no danger whatsoever but we've made ourselves look like twats, the Home Secretary has the power to kick innocent foreigners out of Britain without a shred of hard evidence, just because the police didn't like the colour of their skin."

"The Special Immigration Appeals Commission can hold its kangaroo courts in secret, giving full consideration to dodgy so-called intelligence reports that would be laughed out of any criminal court," he added. "And when these foreigners are duly slung onto the first plane out of the country, the police can say, 'See, we told you there was something shifty about them.' Handy, isn't it?"

Meanwhile Peter Fahy, Chief Constable of the Gemastapo - formerly the Greater Manchester State Police - told reporters that he was not embarrassed by the deb√Ęcle.

"It's just bloody hot in here, that's all," said the purple-faced Mr Fahy, his eyes fixed on the fast-growing puddle of sweat at his feet.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Tesco 'A Leading Cause of Poverty', Says Nobody

The unrestrained greed of Tesco - the money-hoovering supermarket chain which has announced a record-breaking £3.13bn profit in the middle of the worst recession in decades - is largely responsible for the impoverishment of millions of struggling Britons, according to no experts.

The company's pre-tax profit - up 10% on the previous year - is the largest ever recorded in UK retail.

"When money is tight, people have to economise in all sorts of ways," said city analyst Rob Blind. "But they still have to eat, which is where the supermarkets come in. Of course, Tesco also sells plenty of stuff which people can't eat, so naturally that puts a bit of a dent in their profits - but thankfully they would never stoop to making up the shortfall by, say, hiking the price of a loaf of nutrition-free chipboard from the Tesco Value range from 28p to 38p."

Accusations of profiteering at the expense of the hard-hit public were flying thin and slow in the media, with headlines such as 'TESCO SHAREHOLDERS PROFITING FROM YOUR MISERY', 'EVERY LITTLE PRICE RISE HELPS' and 'STRING UP THE TESCO FAT CATS' nowhere to be found in the papers or the newscasts.

Ordinary victims of Britain's economic collapse showed similar levels of concern at being ripped off by the supermarket chain, with 97% of shoppers telling researchers to stop blocking the fucking entrance.

Meanwhile, CEO Sir Terry Leahy apologised profusely to the firm's corporate shareholders for allowing Morrisons to make a tiny dent in Tesco's rapidly-growing mountain of cash, saying that its rival had been slightly more successful in cynically pretending that it was in some way concerned with offering shoppers value for money.

Brown To Replace Discredited Expenses Scheme With Discredited Expenses Scheme

Gordon Brown has unveiled plans to put a stop to the vast range of expenses which MPs can currently claim, with a radical proposal to install in their place a simple system of giving them a bucket of fivers every time they show up at their place of work.

"Apparently you, the public, have some kind of problem with the principle of reimbursing MPs every time they open their wallets," said the Prime Minister. "If I scrap all that and just hand them a wad of cash on top of their salaries just for turning up, do you think you could shut the fuck up for five minutes?"

The attendance allowance is already used by many councils and in the European Parliament, allowing elected representatives to swan in, sign a register and promptly scarper off to the nearest restaurant for a congratulatory dinner.

"The unemployed will be very familiar with this system," explained Mr Brown. "They show up at the Jobcentre, sign a chit, and three days later I very generously drop £128.60 into their bank accounts, which they then use to pay the wages of the researchers and secretaries who work for them, and to cover the cost of the Blu-Ray recorders, plasma TVs and porn movies which are so essential to the search for gainful employment."

When asked for specific details of how much he felt like giving his fellow MPs in return for the inconvenience of poking their faces round the door for five minutes, Mr Brown scowled, kicked a cat and stamped back inside Number Ten to put the finishing touches to Alistair Darling's budget.

Deputy Leader Harriet Harman later told a packed House of Commons that a cash machine was already being installed in St Stephen's Chapel, conveniently close by the Members' Entrance to the Palace of Westminster.

Death of Novelist Shatters Fragile Illusion of Post-Industrial Civilisation

Cold, detached observers - many of them called Jim, Ballard or Jim Ballard - have already begun to note the first signs of the breakdown of society, following the death on Sunday of cult novelist JG Ballard.

"It has only been two days, but already the thin veneer of civilised behaviour is beginning to fracture," warned Ballard, an alienated protagonist. "The death of a single novelist may, at first, hold little or no significance in any wider context. However, the repercussions of this seemingly-unimportant event will ripple remorselessly through the very bedrock of our complacent Western civilisation, challenging the norms of convention which we accept without thinking, and shaking our beliefs in all that we take for granted - until the whole edifice of our technology-dependent worldview falls apart, and we find ourselves fighting for survival in a post-modern tribal conflict."

Another clinically-aloof visionary, Jim, pointed to the rapidly-escalating torrent of pompous obituaries and other portentous Ballard-related articles in the media.

"According to my calculations, in a mere three weeks the amount of material written about Ballard will outstrip the entire global supply of paper," he predicted. "Even the internet will run out of capacity within six months. There will only be one permitted topic of conversation - JG Ballard - and our cosy world will rapidly disintegrate into mutually-antagonistic factions, which will bitterly wage relentless campaigns of extermination against all who favour any other Ballard book over their particular chosen favourite."

Jim then hit Ballard squarely in the face with a Mercedes hood-ornament, leaving a clear imprint.