Here are some items Chancellor George Osborne might have announced to perk up an otherwise dull budget:
l A tax on top hats and tailcoats. With a hefty surcharge when such clothing is worn at Ascot or meetings of the Bullingdon Club. (See also Wedding Tax.)
l A slightly lower rate will be imposed on white ties, black ties (except those worn at funerals) and indeed ties of any kind, especially if worn in golf clubhouses.
l A swingeing increase in duty on Pimm's, including any cucumber, apples, or citrus fruits used in the construction of such alcoholic drinks. A levy on strawberries and cream consumed in hospitality tents at Wimbledon, the Open Championship, Six Nations rugby matches or anywhere we poor folk can't get in.
l A super tax on plovers eggs, windy-up gramophones, and any other artefacts pertaining to Brideshead Revisited-type behaviour, whether in or out of quadrangles at Oxford University.
l A bedroom tax on any mansion, country house or palace with more than 10 rooms. Punitive national insurance contributions exacted on employers of butlers, footmen, or scullery maids.
l An excise duty on people with long names. Such as, for instance, Ralph George Algernon Percy, 12th Duke of Northumberland. Nothing personal, your grace, and at least you will not have to pay the new supertax rate on landed gentry with a hyphen in their name.
l An annual Tumbril Avoidance Tax on wealthy landowners, bankers on big bonuses, and participants in hedge funds.
l A Grouse Tax collected every August from those who go shooting the low-flying birdies. Revenue will be used to provide Famous Grouse on free NHS prescription as an adjunct to the winter fuel allowance.
l The Aberdeen Levy. Furryboots City has more multi-millionaires per capita than any other city in the UK. Aberdonians with more than £1m in the bank will have 10% deducted from their accounts. It's like Cyprus but the weather's not as good.
l Vehicle excise duty variation. HMRC staff will mount roadblocks to impose £1000 spot fines on drivers of a Bentley, a Rolls-Royce, or any other expensive motor car.
l The wedding tax. An impost on any marital celebrations with a budget exceeding £1000. A surcharge on anyone wearing top hat and tails. Tax breaks for kilt-wearers.
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