From the Guardian...

Apparently, this is a real reply from HMRC although even if it's not it's still funny.

The Guardian newspaper had to ask for special permission to print it.

Dear Mr Addison,

I am writing to you to express our thanks for your more than prompt reply to

0ur latest communication, and also to answer some of the points you raise.

I will address them, as ever, in order.

Firstly, I must take issue with your description of our last as a "begging letter". It might perhaps more properly be referred to as a "tax demand". This is how we at the Inland Revenue have always, for reasons of accuracy, traditionally referred to such documents.

Secondly, your frustration at our adding to the "endless stream of crapulent whining and panhandling vomited daily through the letterbox on to the doormat" has been noted.

However, whilst I have naturally not seen the other letters to which you refer I would cautiously suggest that their being
from "pauper councils, Lombardy pirate banking houses and pissant gas-mongerers" might indicate that your decision to "file them next to the toilet in case of emergencies" is at best a little ill-advised. In common with my own organization, it is unlikely that the senders of these letters do see you as a "lack wit bumpkin" or, come to that, a "sodding
charity".

More likely they see you as a citizen of Great Britain , with a
responsibility to contribute to the upkeep of the nation as a whole.

Which brings me to my next point.

Whilst there may be some spirit of truth in your assertion that the taxes you pay "go to shore up the canker-blighted, toppling folly that is the Public Services", a moment's rudimentary calculation ought to disabuse you of the notion that the
government in any way expects you to "stump up for the whole damned party" yourself.

The estimates you provide for the Chancellor's disbursement of the funds levied by taxation, whilst colourful, are, in fairness, a little off the mark. Less than you seem to imagine is spent on "junkets for Bunterish hairsplitters" and "dancing whores" whilst far more than you have accounted for is allocated to, for example, "that box-ticking facade of a university system."

A couple of technical points arising from direct queries:

1. The reason we don't simply write "Muggins" on the envelope has to do with the vagaries of the postal system;

2. You can rest assured that "sucking the very marrow of those with nothing else to give" has never been considered as a practice, because even if the Personal Allowance didn't render it irrelevant, the sheer medical logistics involved would make it financially unviable.

I trust this has helped. In the meantime, whilst I would not in any way wish to influence your decision one way or the other, I ought to point out that even if you did choose to "give the whole foul jamboree up and go and live in India " you would still owe us the money.

Please send it to us by Friday.

Yours sincerely,
H J Lee,
Customer Relations

 

Comments
stepurhan's picture

It's not real (though still funny)

stepurhan | | Permalink

It is also pretty old.

Where did you come across it?

@stepurhan

Dusty | | Permalink

Facebook post. So no age given, but I did wonder whether 'inland revenue' meant it was 'old' or 'creative licence' ;-)

stepurhan's picture

Classic weekly column

stepurhan | | Permalink

Whilst this was undoubtedly the best in the series, it was always a good read. There was another classic one where he was sorting his records for his tax return. He keeps on "just quickly" having to do other things like check his e-mail and look something up on the internet.

One of the classic lines I remember (approximately) was about how his invoices had now been sorted into two piles. One under a cat, and the other under another cat. Adorable, but not very helpful.

Not his fault...

Dusty | | Permalink

Experience teaches us that there's a direct equasion between the number of missing invoices and the number of cats asleep on the table.

 I'm definately going on a mission to find the whole series. ;-)

Chris Addison

Dusty | | Permalink

Stand-up comedian / presenter of Never mind the Buzzcocks and star of In the thick of it. ;-)

 

Direct Line

cyrynpen | | Permalink

Isn't he the poor bloke who has to listen to Alexander Armstrong in the awful Direct Line adverts?

(Clearly the adverts worked!!)

Correct ;-)

Dusty | | Permalink

...and one of the characters in 'In the thick of it'.

Looks far too young to have written this in 2003 but he's actually 38. Anyway, I rather like that the rest of the world thinks we're that funny on a day to day basis.

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