Empty threats

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In the UK anyone who owns a TV, or watches TV programmes on a computer, must, by law, have a TV licence, which costs £147 a year. I just looked it up on Google – as I have no TV, I don’t need to know how much it costs. The licencing fee pays for our non commercial channel, the BBC.As there are so many TV channels these days, some people probably never watch the BBC, but they still have to have a licence.

I haved lived at my current address since May 11th, 20th 2015. I received my first threatening letter from the TV licencing company a few weeks after I moved in. It began by warning me that I could be fined some ridiculous amount of money if I didn’t get a TV licence. It told me how much a TV licence cost. Somewhere at the bottom it said that if I didn’t need a licence should go to their website and tell them – but then it said that they may come and check p on me anyway.

I didn’t feel like telling them I didn’t need a licence if they weren’t neccesarily going to believe me, so I ignored the letter.

A few weeks later I got another, slightly more threatening one, which also had the smallprint telling me to let them know if I didn’t need a licence, and that they may check up to see that I wasn’t lying.

I ignored it.

They sent another, and another. Each one was more threatening than the last. They were going to bring round the heavies and look for a TV, they were going to take me to court for non-payment… non payment of what? Why should they assume I have a TV? The vehicle licencing people never accuse me of having a car. What gives the TV licencing people the right?

I don’t like uncalled-for threats, and I don’t like the suggestion that I may be a liar, before I’ve even opened my mouth.

I ignored all the idle threats.

They didn’t visit me. I have a feeling that they wouldn’t be allowed to enter the building if they tried. Neither did they take me to court. It would have been difficult for them to do so, as they don’t even know who I am. The letters are always addressed to  “The addressee”, or some such nonsense.

Having used up all of their tactics to no avail, they then started right back at the beginning, with a repeat of their very first threatening letter to me, and now they’re systematically the whole rigmarole all over again.

The whole thing has made me quite cranky – in the American way (bad-tempered or irritable), but it’s given me a great idea.

A lot of the art in the famous Tate Modern art gallery is considered by many to be pretty cranky – in the British way (eccentric or strange), and some of the work submitted for the Annual Turner Prize is no exception – Tracey Emin’s ‘unmade bed’ being a famous, and controversial example.

I’d like to submit an arwork to the Turner Prize contest. I need an old TV which has had its guts ripped out. I couldn’t use a functional one, as I’d need a TV licence for that. I’ll tear up all of the many letters I’ve received from the TV licencing company, and artistically paste them on the TV sceen, making sure that the visitors and judges get the gist of what is written on them. My entry will be titled “Slapstick TV.”

I think it could be a winner.

The Daily Post #Cranky

©Jane Paterson Basil

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28 thoughts on “Empty threats

  1. The BBC is a pedophile organization. The sculpture over their entrance is by Eric Gill. Check him out? Little wonder Savile got away with it, They probably protected and used him? That sculptor had good talents but wasted them on his peccadilloes. I live in Canada but am from UK. It’s disgusting the way politicians are protecting the abusers. Cheers Jamie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just checked him out. Horrifying. Success and power breed corruption, but those who give in to it must already have the seeds of curruption inside them. The Savile (and others) case brought it to the attention of the world, and also made us see how little power we have over it. Politicians who aren’t corrupt don’t get a look in, and it’s getting worse as humans become more angry and more willing to blame their troubles on whoever the politicians have fingered to be the fall guy. These days it’s Muslims and immigrants with the wrong accent and language.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. … for what it’s worth? The Catholic church has been using Muslims as the fall guys, since 1096. I don’t care for either religion. I have tried to read a Qu’uran translation. It’s a difficult one to comprehend. The true word of God can be spoken by anyone and everyone. It’s not found in books or buildings.It may be found inside yourself.

        It’s often been said. Point one finger at something and there are three fingers pointed back at yourself.The BBC is patently an NGO. The government now uses fully, to push it’s propaganda. Like TASS from soviet days. The bankers love wars. War on drugs, war on terrorism, etc. So long as there’s a war they get away with many evils as people are distracted by the news. Don’t get me started here … Cheers Jamie

        Liked by 1 person

        1. As I know how governments use news to divert people from what they’re doing, I rarely keep up with their propaganda.
          The world is full of simple people who can’t see the cover-up even when it’s staring them in the face.

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    1. They refuse to scrap ours. I had hoped that they’d manage to push their way into my home, so I could have a bit of fun with them. It’s frustrating, getting those letters and not being able to get back at the perpetrators.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It sounds outrageous . They assume everyone has a TV. And they also assume everyone has a computer or access to the net as well.And then they threaten you. They must waste an awful lot of time, energy and money on useless letters.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I didn’t have a TV or license for quite a while after I moved to Barnstaple and they did send someone round I invited them in to assure themselves I had no TV………I think you have a point about people not watching BBC I hardly watch TV however I do have on CBBies when my grandson is here………xox

    Liked by 1 person

    1. As far as I know, no-one’s been here, although I was told to expect a visit a couple of weeks ago. I’d invite them in, too. I’d like this to be over with, but I don’t like their bully-boy tactics. The first time I got a letter I wasn’t well, and the tone of the letter, plus the suggestion that if I told them I didn’t need a licence they wuldn’t believe me, brought on a panic attack.
      Those letters are designed to be threatening to innocent people who may be vulnerable, and that’s out of order, even if it does get results.

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  3. Da-um! That sounds like a winner, girl! You should SO do it! I think that licensing thing is preposterous. It sounds to me like it was actually a scam. If they eek some money, great! If not, well they just give it another whirl. Is there someone you really dislike? Write these TV people a letter and tell them you gave your TV to this person and here’s THEIR address! (I know. That would be mean, wouldn’t it… 😉 )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha… Last night a reliable source told me that nobody has ever been taken to court for not having a licence for a TV, as there’s no law stating you have to have one! And yet they get away with sending out threatening letters year in, year out. It seems incredible. They used to send out TV detector vans, until everyone found out they don’t work. Who are these people? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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