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Sunday, April 17, 2005

I have been very busy attending funerals (Karol Wojtyla, Prince Rainier), weddings (Charles and Camilla), and reunions of the dead in a Melbourne crypt. This has delayed the completion and publication of my manifesto in good time for Airstrip One’s forthcoming (not ‘upcoming’ * ) election. Alas, this means that my proposals have a slightly unfinished feel, looking a bit rough around the edges. Still, in that respect, I’m in very good (i.e. very bad) company; you know: forward not back, real alternative, are you thinking what we're thinking...
1. Prevention of noise & nuisance.

It shall be illegal to manufacture, import, sell (or otherwise distribute), use or activate any mobile phone with a ring tone. All phones must therefore only work soundlessly, e.g. on 'vibrate alert'.

It shall be an offence to manufacture, import, sell (or otherwise distribute), or use any vehicle fitted with a working horn. All vehicles must be modified immediately if they are to be used in any way at all.

No burglar alarm may be permitted other than those that operate soundlessly e.g. by telephoning a remote call centre.

2. The reporting of real news.

It shall be an offence to report on any of the following:
The behaviour of footballers and other sportspeople other than on the field or when they are being sentenced/executed for loutish behaviour.
The behaviour of actors other than directly in performance.
The plots of soap operas.
The behaviour (or even the existence of) the Royal Family and their hangers on. This applies to official as well as private activities.
The official secrets act shall be suitably amended to cover these offences.

3. Freedom of information.

All information must be readily available and the presumption must be that nothing is secret. The onus will be on any complainant to prove that the release of information, before or after the event, is not in the national interest.

4. Religion.

Religion will be limited to consenting adults in private. Any person attempting to
Tell a young person that any religious story is true
Inculcate faith
Physically mutilate (circumcise) a child
Suggest that creation theory is, in any way, superior to evolution
Claim a miracle
Mention ‘God’ in public
Suggest there is a life after death
Advocate or staff a faith school
shall be guilty of a criminal offence.

5. The Royal Family

Royal Residences shall be made public buildings and their former occupants housed in suitable alternative accommodation e.g. 3 Hoxton Villas or First Landing, Pentonville.

6. Capital punishment.

The British public, having a continuing appetite for this form of punishment, shall be given the opportunity to watch the public execution of ringing mobile phone manufacturers, tabloid journalists and editors, drivers who park in cycle lanes, all religious officials (except perhaps the odd Quaker), new age advocates, astrologers and other bullshitters, believers in life after death **, misusers of the English Language, and, of course, Jeremy Clarkson.

* The word 'upcoming' will also be legally defined as referring to the feeling and material involved in the act of vomiting.

**This will have the dual, beneficial effect of bringing purveyors of nonsense face-to-face with the logic of their position and ridding the rest of us of these idiocy-mongers.
One of the many advantages of having an on line manifesto is that one can update it as the mood takes one; I hope to do this, from time to time, in the days and weeks ahead, as I become more exasperated with the official champions of orthodoxy.

Myfanwy has asked me the very relevant question 'What's wrong with Jeremy Clarkson?' I'm delighted to answer: in all the outpourings of this gentleman, only two items have proved of interest/use. Firstly, one can increase the range at which one's car remote locking fob operates. One does this by holding it to one's head before operating it. The second example is that one has to travel at well over 180 m.p.h. through a speed camera zone to avoid being photographed. Otherwise, he talks absolute tosh.

See what I mean, Myfanwy?
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