Wednesday, 1 December 2010

An Interview with 'Father Christmas'

Q: Sir Reginald, you’re one of the most celebrated entrepreneurs and philanthropists in the world. Your renowned generosity has led your friends in the City to call you ‘Father Christmas’. That must make you proud?

R: Well, we should all do what we can. I haven’t given that much. On the latest count, maybe I’ve given about £40 million to charities.

Q: That’s a huge sum. Some have estimated that to be almost 0.005% of your personal fortune.

R: Yes, I think my children sometimes worry that I’m getting too generous. But how many more mansions and companies can I buy them! It’s so important to think about other people. When I look at my vast art collection, for example, I don’t think about myself, I think about the people who might be deprived of a chance to view these masterpieces. So I’ve donated millions to galleries and museums to enable them to display my precious collection to the masses.

Q: And you give substantial sums to political parties too?

R: ‘Parties’, as you rightly noted, not ‘party’. I’m totally non-partisan. Political parties seek to gain power to run our country, and I give them the support they need to do that well.

Q: Isn’t it true that in return your tax bill has been drastically reduced under all the different governments?

R: Not just my tax bill, all my friends have had to pay less tax as well, and most of them haven’t donated a penny to any political party. So once again, others benefit from my generosity, which is fine by me.

Q: Your giving is not limited to this country either, is it?

R: I’m a complete cosmopolitan. We live in a splendidly inter-connected world. And I give to countless overseas projects.

Q: Like the one with the princes in the Middle East where your gifts helped them build up the world’s finest fleet of Rolls Royce cars?

R: Absolutely, and in return, we got a contract for supplying their government with some of the deadliest weapons in the world. I’m very proud of contributing so much to the peace and stability of this volatile region.

Q: Finally, Sir Reginald, what about the people who work for you? What are you most proud of in giving to them?

R: So many things come to mind. I give them all a good income. Some of them complain it’s not enough to live on, but what do they know about the cost of living! They should try the upkeep I have to cope with. I give them a straightforward working environment, with none of these health and safety complications tripping everyone up every second of the day. But above all, I give them that rare opportunity – to sacrifice themselves for the greater good, because every quarter to increase our overall profitability and share values, I give a good number of them the sack.

Q: That must be quite hard to do?

R: You’ve got to think about the big picture. The more people I make unemployed, the lower the pressure is on wage demands. That keeps inflation down, which helps the economy, and all my friends are happy.

Q: No wonder they call you Father Christmas.

No comments: