Monday, August 24, 2015


Douglas Adams Vs Corbynomics

The story so far.

In the beginning, the Labour leadership election was created.

This has made a lot of people very angry, and been widely regarded as a bad move.

Since the Labour B-Ark crashed completely, its principal survivors have emerged as the very talented and useful Blair-Tone Sanitiser (Third Class) Kendall, Security Guard Number 2 Cooper, Make-up Assistant (Trainee) Burnham and Hairdressers’ Fire Development Sub-committee Chair Corbyn.

There are many important and unpopular questions which must be asked about the crash of the Labour B-Ark and the new landscape in which they now find themselves. The four very talented and useful candidates even hope that there might even be one ultimate question that will unravel the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything. They can all be relied upon not to ask it.

They have instead started work on several typically Labour B-Ark projects: arguing about what colour it should be; having a quick bath; declaring war on the next continent. Most importantly of all, after 573 meetings, the Chair of the Hairdressers’ Fire Development Sub-committee has discovered a brilliant new fiscal policy…

“How can you have money if none of you actually produces anything? It doesn’t grow on trees, you know!”

“Ah! But since we decided a few weeks ago to adopt the leaf as legal tender, we have all of course become immensely rich. But we have run into a small inflation problem, owing to the high level of, ah, leaf availability. Which means that I gather the current going rate is something like: three major deciduous forests buy one ship’s peanut.
“So in order to obviate this problem and effectively revalue the leaf, we’ve decided on an extensive campaign of defoliation and, er, burn down all the forests.
“I think that’s a sensible move, don’t you?”

This quotation summarising ‘People’s QE Corbynomics’ is taken directly from The Hitchhiker’s Guide To the Galaxy, Television Phase, Episode Six, by Douglas Adams. As it’s one of the most remarkable TV series ever made, I recommend watching all six episodes*. But if you merely want to see the economic analysis, it’s about 27 minutes into the final episode (above), immediately after Ed Miliband contributes to the debate with the typically incisive observation, “One’s never alone with a rubber duck. Whee!”

*Six episodes may seem like a lot, but that’s just peanuts to the Labour B-Ark leadership election. For though it has many omissions, and contains much that is apocryphal, or at least wildly inaccurate, The Hitchhiker’s Guide To the Galaxy Television Phase scores over the more pedestrian audience experience in two important respects. First, it is very much shorter (taking only three hours, not three months, and after watching it you are far less likely to say ‘Well, that’s a part of my life I’ll never get back’), and secondly, it has the words: “DON’T PANIC” inscribed in large, friendly letters on the cover. Which by this stage in the Labour B-Ark leadership election pretty much everyone concerned agrees they could have done with, too.

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