An institution from the back pages of LGC says farewell as he looks ahead to 2009.
I am disturbed by a crone who hisses “yer worship, see here, we are all doomed”. She unveils a crystal ball that gives alarming predictions for 2009.
Many councils will try to save money by outsourcing all services, but the companies concerned will find themselves bankrupted by the strain of delivering these for their tender price.
Since their collapse would cause distress and chaos, the government would perforce bail them out, with the result that council services would be provided by central government. It would then decide it might as well abolish councils.
She also predicts that councils desperate for cash will invest in 100% interest rates offered by banks in Rockall, Nagorno-Karabakh and Antarctica, sending their finance directors as hostages.
Attempts to kickstart the economy by public works will see the construction of hundreds of town halls in finest Carrara marble even though there will be no one to work in them tramways to unbuilt eco-towns and ‘green’ incinerators commissioned for the burning of surplus regeneration plans.
On the brighter side, mobs of ‘blue sky thinkers’, ‘inspirational leadership consultants’, ‘paradigm change managers’ and the like will be mocked as they beg in the streets.
It really is all too much. I pay little attention to soothsayers, but when my broker says the same it is time to act.
Accordingly, Toulmin Hall has been sold, my servants sent to retrain as insolvency practitioners, and I have arranged to be blasted into outer space for the duration while recession sweeps the world.
Who knows what I will find and whether, one day, I may acquaint you all with my discoveries.