Fox (n): carnivore of genus vulpes; crafty person; scavenger; (vb) to confuse; -ed (adj): to be drunk.
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Thursday 13 September 2012

Dear Gideon...

I UNDERSTAND you're looking for a new governor of the Bank of England. Look no further.

You will probably be inundated with applications for the role, considering this is the first time the job has been an open competition, we're in the worst recession for 50 years and now the Olympics are over there are lots of people with time on their hands.

There are going to be lots of journalists trying to fill space with humorous "we're not as bad as the bankers!" CVs as well. But I'm quite serious - I have a sure-fire economic policy I think you'll like.

Now, I'll come clean and admit that maths is not my strong point. A phone call to one of my parents is normally needed for conversions between metric and imperial, and if they're not around I have to crowd-source particularly tricky sums among whoever is to hand.

Despite that I managed a B in my maths GCSE, and although you've never revealed what grades you managed that should put us roughly on a par unless, of course, you've never revealed them because they're worse. In which case you'll need my mum's phone number.

I've always worked and paid my taxes, and the only debt I've ever been in is the one five times my salary called a "mortgage". To this end the £300,000 the job brings with it would be handy, because unlike you I can't get the taxpayer to help me out with it and unlike the Bank of England I'm not allowed to simply print more money and hope no-one minds.

I'll admit that I did not see the 2008 financial crisis coming; but then, seeing as the current governor Mervyn King didn't spot it either despite being warned years earlier, that should hardly rule me out.

When economists make stark warnings I generally take note, even if they are about austerity cuts being likely to throw us into a double-dip recession which turn out to be true and very inconvenient for my chums in government. The last chap didn't manage that.

Your ad calls for a "strong communicator" - that's me! - of "undisputed integrity" - well, nothing's been proven - have "good understanding of the financial markets" and be capable of "inspiring confidence" in the banking system.

My understanding of the financial markets and plan for economic confidence and reform can be summed up thus:

2. Don't gamble with someone else's money.
3. Don't keep gambling when you're broke.

If the British economy sticks to those rules, it really can't go wrong. And if it can't go wrong, then we can all be confident and it won't need reforming again. WIN!

As to my integrity, I do not lie, cheat, gamble, steal, ignore advice, back people who need a telling-off, feel entitled, suck up vast bonuses while sacking staff, refuse to talk to people, destroy pension funds, fix interest rates, launder drug money, rack up bad debts, require a knighthood or expect anyone to sort out my financial woes except myself.

In short, I'm just about solvent, relatively normal, and capable of basic arithmetic, which puts me head and shoulders above most of the banking industry candidates you'll be considering.

However, having written the above letter it has occurred to me that the reason you are throwing the job open to public applications like a half-arsed financial version of the X Factor may be because you haven't got a scooby who should do it and it's a desperate cry for help from a 2:1 modern history graduate without economic qualifications or ideas who will, more than likely, give it to someone he is friends with.

Bloody Seb Coe probably.

Oh well, I'll post this anyway. Hope springs eternal, eh?



PS. The ad says I would need to work closely with the Chancellor and I have bought a clothes peg to wear on my nose to help with this.

"Just give me a chance, Simon!"