I have had a very hectic week so far, much of it taken up with dealing with constituents very angry about the banks.
I have become quite used to this anger over the last year or so but an MP has to be very careful replying to some emails - in one case from a woman unable to pay the mortgage and with bailiffs about to move in.
My first nightmare image was of a front page article in the Krupton news and a picture of a distraught woman and six kids sitting on their front lawn surrounded by their worldly possessions. But this woman's email appeared rather too clever to me in that she wanted to know whether she qualified for some Quantitative Easing. Naturally, I became very suspicious.
Clearly I couldn't appear indecisive in my reply.
Neither did I feel I could string her along with total bullshit in case she was in fact a senior financial adviser from Barclays or HSBC or had been put up to a sinister little joke by that little upstart who has recently started calling himself the "prospective parliamentary candidate for Krupton."
But I also saw this as an opportunity. I needed to deal with this one with such wily craft that it would mark me out as a Government Minister in the making. So I decided on a cunning plan to present such bemusing facts and figures that it would prove beyond any doubt that I possessed such a deep understanding of QE and other financial matters that my re-election was guaranteed.
It might also provide some good short term publicity if I could be seen to have found a way to stop the bailiffs moving in. What I needed was to appear to have a full understanding of QE and able to recommend a brilliant course of action. There should be not a single shred of evidence that I might actually be sitting on the fence. After all, I still need to live up to my slogan: "You know where you stand with Quentin Kelp."
How wise then that while I racked my brain for a solution, I asked Anthea (my PA) to check this woman out as I was still suspicious. And guess who it was?
Yes, that French woman, Mrs Delloitte, who steals my seat on the train on Monday mornings and who spends all of the state pension we give her on betting on horses. It seems that the online name that Mrs Deloitte uses is "Mrs Quill."
"Not only an online name but a nom de plume," I joked to Anthea - impressing her with my deep knowledge of the French language. I admit I then gave Anthea's bum a gentle slap. She likes me doing that when it's all too clear I'm pleased with her.
(NOTE: If things ever turned nasty, I will of course deny doing anything improper. It was inserted here merely to liven up the humorous content of the Newsletter).
Anyway, Anthea's clever detective work proved beyond a shadow of doubt that Mrs Quill (alias Mrs Deloitte) is a crony of that upstart and self-titled "prospective parliamentary candidate for Krupton." I knew all along there was something going on between those two. After all, why on earth would anyone want to upset me first thing every Monday morning if there wasn't some clear political motive for it?
And I have always known that that creep has no morals. What's more, being a college lecturer and local Councillor he's got so much time on his hands that, instead of doing what he's paid to do - teaching hairdressing apprentices - he sits around all day dreaming up sinister plots to embarrass me.
Anyway, what follows is a copy of my email to that old crone, Mrs Quill, as information for other constituents who might find themselves short of money to pay the mortgage or, indeed, are tempted to get too close to that amateur political upstart who thinks he's got all the clever answers.
"Dear Mrs Quill,
I am sorry to hear of your dilemma over your mortgage repayments.
You specifically asked about the possibility of using Quantitative Easing (QE) as a solution. This partly suggests that your current source of financial advice is unreliable. In fact, I do not discount the possibility that whoever has suggested this to you is, in fact, a conman or possibly just a part-time ladies hairdresser.
However, my advice may surprise you (and any hairdressers you may be talking to) in that I believe a form of QE may actually be quite appropriate in your case.
As I am sure you are aware, QE is the way Central Banks provide money when there is insufficient to go around and it's used during financial squeezes similar to yours.
In the past the Banks printed money but I am not recommending this course of action in your case. This is because setting up top notch forgery equipment in your bedroom would take too long and I understand you've only got three days before the bailiffs call around. Anyway, they would, almost certainly, confiscate the forgery equipment as part of their duty of repossession.
However, I agree that a spot of personal QE will be an ideal solution to your immediate problem so I hereby offer you my considered advice as your MP who will, undoubtedly, still be your MP long after the next general election.
Normally, big people like Central Banks operate QE by buying assets in the form of corporate bonds or other financial assets. They do this by using money that they simply create out of thin air.
The people selling these assets are given what is called "thin air money" and they instantly feel very rich. Once the thin air money is in their bank accounts we then call it "electronic thin air money".
Little people like you cannot understand this very easily as it sounds implausible but, believe me, it is quite legal. If you want some nice "electronic thin air money" then this is what you should do.
I do not want to explain in too much in this email in case it gets intercepted but, briefly, it will involve a phantom-like form of financial wizardry that we call "reverse auctions of assets".
In your case you also have an asset, albeit one which is in dire need of renovation if not complete demolition. I refer to that place you call home located at No.37, Station Road, Krupton. However, despite its state of repair, it's still an asset due to the high, unfulfilled demand for cheap housing around Krupton. So let us try to compare your little, rundown, terraced house on Station Road to the Bank of England.
In the case of the Bank of England it creates lots of lovely money just by crediting its own bank account. You can do this as well using a process called "income generation."
You see, the Bank of England wants to use its "thin air money" to increase spending and boost the economy. This is supposed to trickle down to small businesses but appears to get lost on the way. The reason it gets lost is because the Bank of England spends its "thin air money", mainly on buying government bonds from financial firms such as banks, insurance companies and pension funds. Small businesses still struggle to get loans. Do you understand all this, Mrs Quill, or am I being too simplistic?
You, on the other hand, simply want to find some "thin air money" to stave off the arrival of the bailiffs. The clever part is finding a way to put lots of money into your own bank account without having to sell anything. The Bank of England has not yet found it necessary to panic by selling off the Crown Jewels and, in your case, there is also no need to be panicked into selling your own Crown Jewel - namely 37, Station Road.
My considered opinion therefore is that you urgently ask your friend - that sad little upstart who calls himself the Prospective Parliamentary candidate for Krupton - to lend you an amount equal to a year's mortgage repayments. In return, you offer him the use of your living room as his temporary office from which to continue to wage war on the sitting MP (ie me). This will ensure he no longer needs to use tax payer funded College premises to run his devious campaign.
The income you receive from him (once you are absolutely sure it is not the proceeds of crime) can then be used to pay your monthly mortgage payments and/or put straight into a pension fund for yourself, in which case you automatically receive tax relief courtesy of the present Government.
All this advice is offered with no guarantee, however, as I am not a qualified Financial Adviser.
The alternative, Mrs Quill, is for you to return to France tout suite (as you say) as I understand your new President is as mad as hell with us for inviting French people to come and live over here.
If all else fails I suggest putting £100 of your pension on "Curry Favour", running in the 2.30 at Uttoxeter on Friday. If you do, indeed, decide to fund your mortgage by betting on "Curry Favour" then I suggest that you keep your fingers crossed that this nag has eaten a lot of chicken curry the previous night and finds a way of jet-propelling itself around the course instead of using its legs.
Yours sincerely, Quentin Kelp
- aka the long-term MP for Krupton and future Chancellor of the Exchequer. "
Not that's how to deal with upstarts.