Written by Paul Deacon
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Thursday, 6 December 2001

image for Budget Latest: 8 Penneth Rise For Discussions

Ahead of this year's Budget, the Chancellor, Gordon Brown has reportedly not ruled out a tax on discussions in an effort to raise more money for the NHS.

It is widely expected the cost of chipping in opinions for discussion will rise from two penneth to ten penneth with 60' going straight to the Treasury coffers.

Mr Brown is said to have been observing "with great interest" the proliferation of computer chat rooms, message boards and forums.

"There is a lot of free speech at the moment" said a senior Treasury official. "The cost of an opinion of two penneth has not risen since Victorian days. In addition, placing such a tax on discussions could mean extra revenue being diverted into the NHS or schools. The more unpopular the tax the greater the discussion revenue will be. Isn't Gordon brilliant?" he added.

It also emerged last night that discussions at bus stops may be taxed, but pensioners will get a minimum whinge allowance of around 3 minutes a day.

People on low incomes wanting to discuss the government may be offered the chance to buy discussion stamps a penneth at a time.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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