Changes to the law will soon make it legal for mining companies to tunnel up into your kitchen cupboards and steal your pork luncheon meat. Businesses presently have the right to mine beneath private land, but the new legislation will give them powers to drive shafts right up into your home, wander around your front room and rifle through your DVD collection.
The legislation is designed to boost the mining industry and make it easier for companies to begin fracking operations, but protesters are saying that the new rules go too far. "I don't want some dirty great pit worker popping up out of a hole in my living room floor when I'm trying to watch Strictly," said shop worker and amateur environmentalist Tracy Sponge. "And I don't care whether it does provide a much needed boon to industry, the first time I see muddy boot prints tracking across my lino, I'll swing for someone."
A pressure group has recently called for gun dogs to be licensed. "We realise that these are working animals which play an essential role in rural economies," said a spokesman. "But frankly we consider it reckless to give firearms to animals. Oh yes, I'm sure many people think it's great fun to train an Airedale to use a rifle, and of course we are alive to the comic possibilities of a Jack Russell with a blunderbuss, but when your neighbourhood is being terrorised by a pack of tooled-up Labradors you struggle to see the funny side."
How do you grow healthy, nutritious and pest-free organic produce without resorting to chemicals? Well the answer appears to be Vegetable Counselling, according to Professor Kieran Poltroon, a 'Neuroflorologist' from Edinburgh University. Following a two-year study programme, most of which was spent staring at a potato, the Professor has concluded that many vegetables display feelings of inadequacy which impede their growth and makes them prone to disease.
"Think about it," Professor Poltroon urged us. "If someone stuck you in the ground and regularly smothered you in manure, you might not feel too good about yourself either."
Is it cruel to keep ballet dancers in captivity? That's the question that will be discussed this weekend at a symposium set up by the World Wildlife Fund. Those against argue that ballet dancers need the wild wide open spaces of the savannah to properly flourish and practice their entrechats. Those in favour of continuing the practice believe that it is necessary to ensure the survival of these frail and delicate creatures.
It is believed that ballet dancers no longer exist in the wild, their natural habitats having been overrun by lions and tigers, which are traditionally faster, more aggressive and have sharper teeth than anything in a leotard. Furthermore, previous attempts to reintroduce them back into the wild have ended in disaster, with the ballet dancers usually ending up being done over by monkeys.
However, it should be noted that such objections did not impede a successful programme to release mime artists from captivity in 1998, but it remains to be seen whether any useful comparisons can be drawn.
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In his new book, royal historian David Parker casts serious doubts over King Kong's rightful claim to the throne. "I don't think he's a real king at all," says Parker. "I've been trying to trace his ancestry, but any serious study will reveal that giant monkeys feature very rarely in the royal lines of Europe and Asia." Parker's book also questions Burger King's accession.
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