Speaking after the launch of the report of An Bord Snip Nua, Ireland’s Taoiseach Brian Cowen outlined his vision for the leaner Ireland which will emerge in the aftermath of the proposed cuts.

“It’s very simple,” said the Taoiseach.  “People must learn to live in painful anxiety in caves as if the outside world has become profoundly toxic, and must learn to enjoy it. Or they must die.”

The report, printed in lettraset on the back of an old report to save money, outlines enormous cuts to the various government agencies and departments which administered the faintly ridiculous government of Ireland during the boom years before the nuclear strike which devastated the economy entirely predictable recession.

“We will make life as similar to life after a devastating nuclear attack as possible.  We will simulate the nuclear winter for eighteen months with crippling taxes on home heating fuel, and we will remove the entitlement to the medical card from practically everyone, in order to simulate the effects of a cataclysmic destruction of our infrastructure and health service.”

“Also, we’re going to arm the Gardaí and call them Marshals. People even so much as thinking of budgets will be cast into the outer, radioactive darkness, which we will make by grinding up the insides of old watches and smoke alarms.”

“There are innovative ways to save money, and these are entirely Irish solutions to an Irish problem” said the Taoiseach, pointing across the table to a group of senior civil servants, dressed in frock coats and wearing fingerless gloves painstakingly copying the 306 page report by candle light by hand with rolled up pieces of carbon paper.

The report recommends the cut of Social Welfare payments to anybody capable of begging, emigrating to America or growing potatoes, along with innovative measures to do with lynching civil servants and forcing pregnant women to appear on reality TV shows to earn the money to pay for their epidural.

“In addition, we have decided to add the words ‘or face death’ to every clause of every law on the Statute books, and charge €50 for every word spoken in Irish.  People who even consider building new apartment blocks will be put to the sword and have their heads, and the heads of their families, impaled on the gates of the Oireachtas, to be scavenged by the starving hordes roaming the streets in agony.”