Chancellor George Osborne today insisted that the projected shrinkage in the UK economy in the fourth quarter of 2010 can be attributed purely to the cold weather suffered at the end of the year and that it wont change his budget plans.
The economy shrank unexpectedly by 0.5%, but Mr Osborne believes that is down to the “shrinkage factor” caused by heavy snowfall.
“Everybody knows about shrinkage, don’t they?” Mr. Osborne asked. “We experienced an unusually cold winter which obviously led to significant shrinkage in the economy.”
“I feel that anyone who is judging our policies on these figures is under a complete mis-apprehension. The fourth quarter figures are completely the effect of shrinkage.”
“Shrinkage is common knowledge, isn’t it?” Mr. Osborne asked once again, seeking reassurance.
Filed under News, Recession
A woman confirmed to the world’s media yesterday that she is pregnant with her fourth child. The baby is expected to be born in around nine months time and could potentially be either a boy or a girl.
In other news…
- Midget snowed in after eight inches fall overnight
- VAT rise “will not necessarily mean 2.5% increase in quality” says minister
- Liverpool fans call for Dalglish to be sacked and replaced by Bob Paisley following defeat
- ITV1’s ‘Daybreak’ exposed as spoof morning show
As fresh snowfall threatens to inflict further travel misery on millions of Britons in the run-up to Christmas, there was a stark warning today that the chaos on the roads could result in a shortage of Brussel Sprouts.
With snow and ice bringing many of the country’s roads to a standstill, there are fears that supplies of the festive favourite will be greatly effected as distributors struggle to deliver sprouts to supermarkets and grocery stores.
So short are current supplies of the Brussel sprout that prices have begun to hyper-inflate in some areas of the country, with reports that some stores are charging as much as £36.45 per kilo.
“At that kind of price I’d be as well buying cocaine to put on the Christmas dinner plate,” joked (we think) one shopper on Airdrie’s high street.
Astonishing new cables released by WikiLeaks, seen exclusively today by the Daily Mail, show for the first time that the Labour government knew as far back as February that there was a possibility of sub-zero temperatures and heavy snowfall hitting Britain this winter.
Confidential documents from the Home Office reveal that Gordon Brown was made aware on the 19th of February of research conducted by civil servants which predicted that there would be “a very strong likelihood of cold weather which will perhaps lead to some instances of snowfall in the winter months”.
The failure of the Prime Minister of the time to act on the information that Britain could potentially freeze in the winter is likely to anger the millions of people who have suffered from the country’s coldest winter in over a quarter of a century.
The shock revelation, which you can only read about in today’s Daily Mail, is bound to be a major source of embarrassment for the Labour Party and will likely reaffirm voters’ belief that the party is not fit to govern. [Full story on page 3]
Britain is bracing itself for the arrival of a lethal new strain of the flu virus as the snow which brought the country to a standstill at the beginning of the month threatens to return with a vengeance, combining with the seasonal flu and the swine flu pandemic to create a deadly new virus.
Medical experts are almost unanimous in their belief that this weekend’s forecast arctic conditions could potentially intensify the spread of seasonal flu, and as fears grow over a more widespread swine flu pandemic than last year, it is only a matter of time before the three factors combine to form a deadly super-flu.
Already 15 people have died as the latest outbreak of Swine Flu takes hold, and it is estimated that at least a thousand times that number would perish if ‘snow flu’, as it has been termed by no-one, hits Britain as expected.
It is feared that as travellers once again become stranded on frozen motorways and in chilly train stations across iced-up Britain, they will have no way of escaping the inevitable attack by the unrelenting new strain of flu.
The virus will be carried in otherwise innocuous looking snowflakes, drifting wildly through the country in a lethal blizzard, potentially infecting millions of unsuspecting Christmas shoppers and party-goers.
“We have absolutely no evidence that such a super-flu could be born,” commented one local GP, “but if it is then it would undeniably cause devastation and probably death.”
After days of discussion and debate the decision has finally been made to take military action against the insurgent snow which is holding Britain hostage.
Troops have been deployed into the city of Edinburgh where there is already an aggressive presence of snow and ice attacking the streets of Scotland’s capitals. The soldiers, sent in with the blessing of the Ministry of Defence, have launched a strategic assault on the snow and ice using pickaxe’s and shovels.
The snow, considered by many to be the meanest force to hit Edinburgh’s streets in a long time, has indiscriminately attacked the city’s residents for over a week now, causing injury and blockading dozens of motorists on the roads out of the city. Pavements have become virtually unwalkable and supplies are running low as panic sets in.
The hostile confrontation is expected to last for a day or two before the snow begins to retreat.
Western Europe, and in particular the United Kingdom, was on the brink of potential disaster this morning as it was confirmed that the region has completely run out of snow plows and gritters.
The news will send a shiver of fear through millions of frozen Brits who have had their lives ruined by the coldest start to winter since 1976.
A spokesman at the Highways Agency announced the news this morning, reporting that several of the country’s snow plows had become stranded in various parts of Britain, with around a dozen being involved in a multi-snow plow pile-up on the A1 trunk road in Northumberland.
“It is true that the entire stock of snow plows in Western Europe has been exhausted in the current crisis which is gripping the area. Some have become stranded in the frozen conditions, others have been subject to road traffic accidents and a particularly faulty batch of gritters are actually despatching chunks of ice onto roads.”
“There’s absolutely nothing we can do but panic,” admitted the Highways Agency.