Monday, 20 June 2011

Osborne revealed as internet hoax

A man purportedly working for the Conservative Party as Chancellor of the Exchequer has been revealed to be a hoax.

Emily Rosengreen
The FET, Monday 20th June
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“George Osborne” gained notoriety throughout the United Kingdom and abroad by initiating cuts in welfare benefits and outlining other plans to reduce the fiscal deficit.

However, recent doubts about his legitimacy have culminated in his exposure as Afsana al-Rashid, a lesbian blogger from Saudi Arabia.

The news has been a blow to right-wing economists in Britain, many of whom feel that the hoax has seriously damaged the cause of fiscal conservatism. It is feared that other millionaires who really are directing economic policy may now be dismissed as frauds.

David Cameron, a Conservative multi-millionaire and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, has declared his disappointment that al-Rashid was not uncovered sooner.

“Ideally, since George turned out to be fictitious, it would have been best to sort this all out before we let him deliver the budget,” Cameron told reporters.

Others, however, claim that they had suspected Osborne all along. Frank Munton, a right-wing blogger and economics enthusiast, says that Cameron was “a fool” for not seeing the signs.

“The back-story was just a little bit too stereotypical to be believable,” said Munton. “A member of the Irish aristocracy, heir to a baronetcy, a member of the Bullingdon club. It sounds like just the sort of thing that some leftist would dream up to mock us.”

“And then you hear that his first name was actually Gideon. That’s when the penny dropped that it was definitely a hoax.”

Confirmation of the hoax was established when the photos used to depict Osborne were traced back to the LinkedIn profile of an accountant from Bedford.

While al-Rashid has apologised for misleading the British electorate, she maintains that her actions were designed only to attract wider attention to the issue of deficit reduction.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Statue scandal hands Al-Qaeda leadership to Ayman al-Zawahiri

Osama Bin Laden's replacement wins landslide thanks to opponent's indiscretion.

Emily Rosengreen
The FET, Thursday 16th June
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Zawahiri was announced today as the new leader of Al-Qaeda after former frontrunner Ahmed Abdullah Bumchiyk resigned. Bumchiyk, until today Al-Qaeda Minister for Work and Pensions, was forced to step down after commissioning a lewd ivory statue of himself.

The position at the top of Al-Qaeda opened up in May when former top dog Osama Bin Laden was killed by US forces in Pakistan. The process to choose a new leader began shortly afterwards with Bumchiyk taking an early lead in the opinion polls.

Bumchiyk used his ministerial role in the Islamist welfare state to attract older voters. However, his recent indiscretions have led to a rapid decline in his popularity.

Ahmed Haddad, Minister for Sport and Culture, described Bumchiyk as having been “the fresh new face in Al-Qaeda politics.”

“He represented a new kind of Al-Qaeda politician: a softer, more compassionate form of extremism. He was the darling of the terrorist left. They loved him.”

Members of Al-Qaeda have been very careful not to reveal in what way Bumchiyk’s statue caused offense, and the statue itself has now been destroyed. However, some sources claiming to have seen the statue say that the upper crease of the backside was discernable through the robe.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

EMA cuts could ruin alcohol trade

The government’s plans to cut the weekly allowance for students is causing concern in the alcohol industry.

Nathan Lynett
The FET, Wednesday 19th January
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The Education Maintenance Allowance currently provides 16-19 year-olds from poorer backgrounds with between ten and thirty pounds a week.

While some students are believed to be blowing the money on school-related costs, such as books and travel, the majority of recipients have been contributing to the retail sector through heavy purchasing of alcopops and cheap lager.

However, as part of the general scheme of cutbacks in welfare, the government is planning to remove the EMA on account of it being “wasteful”.

The announcement has led to heavy criticism from the Labour Party and a flurry of student protests across the country.

The leader of the Labour Party Ed Milliband has described the cuts as a threat to the economic recovery, citing the alcohol trade as an area with considerable potential for growth.

“At a time of general despair like this, lots of people are turning to drink and we should be encouraging them” said Milliband.

“But instead, David Cameron wants to stop some of our most passionate binge drinkers, those in their late teens, by taking away the money that’s funding it.”

The chancellor George Osborne has responded to these criticisms by emphasising his commitment to an economy that is strong on alcohol. He insisted that the money saved by cancelling the EMA would be channelled into more efficient economic stimuli.

“We appreciate the importance of the alcohol industry, but we don’t think that the EMA is the best way to help that sector” said Osborne. “Students simply aren’t reliable enough drinkers, and the EMA isn’t sufficiently targeted on alcohol consumption.”

“We think that this money would be better invested in the homeless and those with a history of alcohol dependence.”

A representative of the student protesters in Dudley described the accusation that students are not reliable consumers of alcohol as “laughable”. Many young people also fear that a decline in drinking could lead to fewer jobs being created in the bottling industry and the social care sector.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Clegg sued for criticising UK libel

Nick Clegg's attempts to reform libel legislation backfire.

Emily Rosengreen
The FET, Monday 10th January
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The deputy prime minister Nick Clegg is being sued by Tony Blair for comments that he has made about the UK libel laws.

The British system is renowned for offering particularly strong legal protection to those who feel that they have been subjected to unfair public criticism. Many people now fear that the threat of legal action is curtailing freedom of speech.

In a speech on civil liberties, Clegg blamed the Labour party under Blair for failing to tackle the issue before it got out of hand. He accused the former prime minister of having “overlooked a pretty significant problem with our legal system”.

A range of similar attacks were printed on Clegg’s website and distributed on the social media website Twitter.

Blair, having described the allegations as “inflammatory and completely untrue”, is now known to be in the process of suing the Lib Dem leader.

“The is absolutely nothing wrong with the way that Britain handles defamation”, Blair told reporters at a press conference. “And unless Nick Clegg can definitively prove that there is, I will be looking for at least six figures in damages”.

Blair has justified his taking legal action by claiming that this incident may result in personal financial loss. His lawyers are believed to be compiling evidence to show that a slight against his personal integrity could seriously damage sales of his autobiography.

“My entire public career has been based upon having an unblemished character. The last thing I want is for this to damage my credibility as a Middle East peace envoy.”

Clegg, being in the fortunate position of having examined the libel laws very recently, is understood to be entertaining little hope of prevailing in court. It is expected that his only reasonable strategy will be to overturn the current legislation before Blair can successfully sue him.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Telegraph makes Cable apology

The Daily Telegraph defends Vince Cable against its own undercover reporting allegations.

Emily Rosengreen
The FET, Monday 3rd January
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This morning’s edition of The Daily Telegraph included an apology to Vince Cable for “misleading statements” made by the newspaper.

The Business Secretary was humiliated last week when it was revealed that he had boasted of planning to “beat Rupert Murdoch to death with my schlong” to two undercover female journalists.

Cable was consequently stripped of his authority over Murdoch’s BSkyB takeover bid, and replaced by the Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt. Hunt immediately moved to demonstrate his neutrality by attending a private meeting with Murdoch on the media tycoon’s luxury yacht.

However, in a startling about-face, The Telegraph is now calling for Cable’s reinstatement, claiming that their treatment of him had been unjust. Most notably, last week’s description of Cable taking off his shirt and cracking peanuts with his biceps has been retracted.

“We feel that our reporting of the peanut incident failed to do justice to Vince Cable’s class, charisma and really quite extraordinary talent”, stated the apology. “The ladies were genuinely impressed.”

Tony Gallagher, the editor of The Telegraph, told reporters that he deeply regretted setting up the sting. “It was really very unkind of us. We have tarnished the reputations of married men before, but I feel that we went a step too far with Vince.”

“The reporters working undercover were really outrageously pretty. We feel that Vince wouldn’t have acted as he did if they hadn’t been on strict orders to giggle continuously and drop hints that they found opinions about media regulation to be a sexual turn-on.”

The Daily Telegraph has not been alone in publicly defending Vince Cable. Since the government transferred media policy to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, The Guardian, The Independent, The Daily Mail and thirty-five other newspapers and television stations have come out in support of the beleaguered business secretary.

This demonstration of solidarity has included fourteen criticisms of the undercover reporting, twelve warm appraisals of Cable’s career, a front page analysis of his British lineage reaching back to the sixteenth century from The Daily Mail, and no less than twenty-nine assertions of his sexual decency and all-round marital regularity.

The government has yet to respond to this surge of media support for Cable, but it is thought that any attempt to remove Jeremy Hunt’s new responsibilities and reinstate Cable would be seen as political indecisiveness.

Hunt has been unavailable for comment on the subject since Wednesday, as he is currently working on the Murdoch takeover case from his new holiday home in the Canary Islands.