The thought receptacle

Stephen's mental dustbin

Sat, 26 Mar 2011

WAFT from the past

I wrote this around Christmas 2009, thinking I'd sent it to WAFTI, but somehow I never finished it to my satisfaction, and then its timeliness faded. But anyhow, I just had another look and thought I'd “put it out there”. There's a few things I'd change (it's DRAFTI) but I haven't edited it at all except for one egregious typo. Enjoy.

Digital economy “turned off” by accident

Economists have announced a breakthough in understanding the ongoing downturn, after it was discovered that the “digital economy” had been mysteriously turned off. Experts are currently unable to explain how this situation arose, although it is presumed to have been accidental. Modern economic thinking holds that the digital economy should remain “on” at all times.

As in most Western countries, the British digital economy represents a rapidly growing sector. Its production consists of a mixture of internet services, high-tech business, wrist-watches, prosthetics and beach footwear. The sector is notorious for its stop--start nature, but until recent events, most economists believed it would remain “on” for the foreseeable future.

Sean McDiddley, a researcher at the Wordsworth Littlemore Institute, told WAFTI that "this challenges our entire understanding of the economy. Until now, we were assuming the digital economy was always on. Now, we know that it can also be off." He added that the implications for conventional economic thinking were severe. "We simply don't know what patterns of human behaviour would motivate turning the economy off. We hope to find out, using a combination of rectangular trigonometry and playing lots of Monopoly on our computers."

The Conservative party was quick to blame the oversight on government borrowing. “If you go out with the freezer full, you're bound to come home to a giant defrosted puddle in your kitchen,” said the shadow chancellor, Alec Llewellyn Diaz-Smyth. "A Conservative government would stop stuffing the nation's mouth full of borrowed digits, and start chopping ice."

Shops today have been inundated with consumers hunting for Boxing Glove Day bargains, indicating that the digital economy may already be back on. Those interviewed showed little interest in the economic discovery. “Those electricians will always find a way of making flippy floppy,” said one Cardinal entering the Scunthorpe pogo park. “I'm just glad that they scrapped the 5% toenail tax.” Initial reports show a surge in sales of Cadbury's chocolate fingers in Chippenham. One eager shopper was reported to bite the hand off an inattentive shelf-stacker, although no suits were pressed. Supermarkets say they have been working hand-to-mouth to meet the sudden demand for flip-flops. Other popular mitten-fillers receiving a boost include Garibaldi biscuits, electric drills, ticker tape and the Polish flag.

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