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Mahatma Gandhi once said:

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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Peace on Earth!

Dear Ivor

It was so lovely to hear from you, although Aunty Gladys did let me know that you had gone wandering! Just as a word of caution I think in future years you may need to supervise her feeding of the Christmas cake with brandy. When I took round her card and pressie I found her pressing a knitted jumper on to a rather reluctant postman, well intentioned I’m sure, but she had made a slight spelling error with “pistman of the county” emblazoned across it and was a little too amorous in her advances. I managed to extricate him from her grip with a move I learnt in those self-defence classes Robin sent me on. Before you rush to call her, honestly she is fine and hardly remembers the incident at all, although I can’t say the same of the postman! Whilst there I fed the cake with the remainder of the brandy to avoid any further consumption by Aunty G. I think you may need to ration out the slices over Christmas or be prepared to face the consequences!

I do hope you are having a fantastic time, your ukulele playing has definitely improved although I was a little disconcerted with the length of your beard, time for a seasonal pruning! Whilst you have been concentrating on your fiddling I have been catching up with current affairs.

Education is once more in the limelight with the scrapping of the proposed tests for 14 year olds. All these initiatives should be clearly costed and reported to the public, successful or not. Am proposing in our government that all accounting will be transparent. After all whose money is it anyway? MPs always seem to dodge questions on financial figures, don’t they realise how much this infuriates the public, or is it just me, and only makes us think the worst, so why not tell us in the first place, they are running the country on our behalf, so they should be accountable to us.

Ministers seem so hell bent on putting their stamp on the department under their supervision and rising up the political ladder that they appear to introduce change for the sake of it, am proposing a campaign “only change for the better!”. From my observations unwieldy legislation is impossible to supervise and I suspect extremely costly. Governments, no doubt well intentioned, scrutinise and legislate on all aspects of people’s lives, however they seem to forget that they cannot attempt to eliminate every problem that might arise, they are after all dealing with the incongruous nature of humankind, who are apt to do the very thing you least expect them to, take Robin for instance! Am not advocating a laissez faire attitude but more of a streamlining approach. Let’s take taxes for a start, this system is so complicated that we need experts to really figure it out. Does it need to be this complex or is this just to mask the true amount paid by individuals, a little cynicism creeping in sorry Hazel! Can we be honest with the public and let them know approximately how much we need them all to contribute in order to run the country, a job for Alvin and Evan perhaps?

People will always be reluctant to part with their hard earned cash but if we can convince them that we are not wasting it on Christmas parties, second homes, plasma TVs and funding the next fad in education perhaps it would be less painful for them?

Sound a little “bah humbug” so a positive seasonal note for you to ruminate on, it appears that the nativity sheep may have been under rated (ignore the Welsh dig please!).

Although I must admit that sheep do tend to appear to follow each other aimlessly and not really know who is in charge, but is this a valid reason to label them as stupid? I have resisted the desire to expand on this analogy in the interests of goodwill to all men and peace on earth!

Enjoy warming your cockles and the odd glass of seasonal cheer, hope to see you soon.

Poll xx

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