20 June 2007
Test Valley Borough Council
It appears that your council has found itself in a bit of a quandary of late. I refer, of course, to the news that you have permission now to send in the bailiffs to sort out that 85-year-old nuisance Beryl Pearce who refuses to pay your exorbitant council tax.
I have always thought our government was a bunch of limp-wristed, socialist pansies: the effeminate boy always bullied at school. But now you are setting a superb example that you are not to be toyed with. I particularly enjoy the irony that this particular lady is a former RAF nurse who tended to those honourable heroes who fought the fascists in the Battle of Britain and are the only reason we are not all rattling off in German, quaffing sauerkraut and guzzling pilsner.
Is this a cunning guise to take pensioners off the streets? They do clog up the roads with their Zimmerframes and scooters and take an age in the queues of the Post Office. Their time in the sun must surely be up. They may have helped build this country from the bankrupt, war-torn island it once was in the Forties and Fifties, and aided in its transition from has-been global empire into one of the richest countries in the world, but how dare they believe this gives them any sorts of rights?
I have it from reliable sources that were Ms Pearce be sent to prison, she would have to serve approximately 32 days to pay back her disservice to society. Which leaves you in a pickle. His Royal Holiness, Lord Falconer, has just announced that all non-violent offenders currently serving time in prison for terms less than four years will be let out 18 days prior to their original release dates to free up some beds. So Ms Pearce will spend a grand sum of 14 days in prison if you do indeed send your goons in to sort her out. This may seem like an eternity for a soft, council bureaucrat like yourself, but rest assured that will be a stroll out in the park for an ex-RAF nurse.
So, Sir, where do you stand? Your plan to take octogenarians off our streets by physical means has gone awry. There are no prison beds left, and if one does become handy, Ms Pearce will be let go 18 days prior to her original release date, which means you may as well not even go through the hassle. So she could refuse to pay her council tax indefinitely and you wouldn't be able to do a thing.
A good plan gone awry indeed. Just the way I like it!
R S V Peters