There have been calls today
for a public inquiry following revelations that
the National-Universal Bank has lost nearly a
million pounds of investors money. A
spokesperson for the bank apologised but
explained that the nature of modern currency
management made such accidents inevitable.
Reserves, and even bank notes in circulation, no
longer represented the major basis of a currency.
Most capital existed as digital information
within computers. This, according to the National-Universal,
was the root cause of the problem.
It appears that an employee
at a branch in Edinburgh altered the position of
a satellite dish on the roof of the bank in an
attempt to improve the reception quality of The
Simpsons on the television in the employees
staff room. The same dish was used to transfer
funds to other financial centres via satellite,
and the repositioning of the dish caused a one
million pound transfer to miss the satellite.
pounds hit the moon and were recovered due to
reflection. The remaining funds, however, are
continuing at the speed of light towards
Andromeda with no means of retrieval.
There has been anger among
the investors affected. Archibald Morris, an
eighty-five year old war veteran, vented his
frustration. Ill be damned if Ive
saved all me working life, he told
reporters, just to have me money cashed-in
by some green alien with five eyes and nine legs
on Epsilon Bootes.
There have been such
accidents in the past, but never with satellite
transfers. In 1998 there was a rupture in the
transatlantic data cable that led to over one
hundred thousand digital pounds being strewn
across the sea floor. This occurred close to
shore, however, and divers were able to recover
most of the funds using large magnets. The
remainder were washed ashore, fortunately having
little impact on the local ecology.
Due to the curvature of
space-time, the Bank has reassured customers that
the missing funds should return to earth
eventually. This was likely to take several
billion years, however, although the interest
accrued by that time would have exceeded the
number of atoms in the universe.
Action is being considered
to avoid a repetition of this incident. One
possibility would be to beam data to satellites
more slowly such that, if it failed to reach its
target, it would fall back to Earth. This already
occurs with satellite television broadcasts.
Within the last month, for example, an episode of
Eastenders has fallen into the North
Sea, and part of a BBC early evening news
programme narrowly missed a community centre in
Wigan, causing minor damage to vehicles in the
Investors have reacted by
moving their savings from conventional to New
Age banks. The latter refuse to use digital
technology and keep all investments in cash in
cardboard boxes. Each box has the investors
name on it to aid withdrawal. This is surely a
warning to financial institutions that, following
this scandal, work must be done to restore