“Well you see, the gradual winding down of the Health Service is very important for the economy. We will never get the recovery kick-started until the NHS is history, and I think most thinking people think that this is the sort of thinking we need to think our way out of recession,” said Health Secretary and part-time extortionist Mr Cherry B. Unt this morning.

“Do they? I thought most people held the view that closing the NHS will increase poor health, increase days taken off for illness, and increase unemployment,” asked Phil O’Pastry, the fresh-faced former West End dancer from the BBC4 sofa.

“Uh no, that’s quite wrong – it’s not all bad news,” the Minister countered, “You see, what we need is more money to be released into the economy, and the people with all the money are all these selfish old Baby-boomers with their enormous properties and undeservedly fat pensions. No, the only way to get consumer spending back on track is to ensure they all die of heart attacks and pneumonia due to lack of medical attention and poor health. And also to ensure they’ve all made a Will.”

“You think making a Will should be emphasised then?” inquired leggy 34-22-34 Samantha Pants, also on the sofa.

“Absolutely, of course it should. First and foremost because that means more work for lawyers, but also secondarily because they can sort out the probate quickly and get the stiff’s offspring writing lots of cheques for new cars and so forth. That’s the way to get Britain back to work,” Mr Unt replied, “and as it happens my company Hotwills is ready and willing to take on the challenge”.

“I see,” observed Phil, “well thank you so much for joining us Minister. Now, over to Jason Ergonought in Cumbria, where the snow is almost covering a lawn somewhere….how serious are things now Jason?”

Last Night at The Slog – the appalling pain of writing a reality cheque.