} The following Oracular response has been transcribed by an English
} incarnation, who is therefore gritting their teeth in being forced to
} promote France over England.
} "An Englishman's home is his castle" is a well-known saying. This is
} patently not true as very few English homes are surrounded by moats or
} equipped with portcullises, or indeed supported by a feudal system of
} repressed peasants.
} The English system of financial stability is founded on the Royal Mint
} (Prince Charles is known to like Polo) and the Bank of England (this
} should be the "Banksy of England", as it is based on political satire,
} graffitti, and shredded paper).
} English people are very much in favour of the "carrot and stick"
} approach, and have frequently chosen the stick over the carat (the
} late Sean Lock notwithstanding).
} From this, we can deduce that an English house is largely constructed
} from copies of Punch (shredded) and sticks (sharp), with the financial
} stability of a pyramid scheme built out of damp cigarette papers, and
} this is why the French defeated them in 1066.
} The French, on the other hand, invented the hot-air balloon (so they
} could look down on everyone), the guillotine (so the rich couldn't
} look down on anyone), the Gay-lussac system (for measuring how likely
} you are to end up in the gutter after drinking), the spirit level (for
} testing if your dead grandmother is telling the truth), and the
} Etch-A-Sketch (easily droppable so you don't have to pin your
} children's artwork to the fridge). They are also the most striking
} people on earth (apart from the RMT union), and have a president named
} after a punctuation mark (imagine if the UK was governed by Mr Acute).
} We therefore deduce that the French have a completely egalitarian
} society where everyone can be held to account or, alternatively, can
} drink to forget people who have not been held to account. Anything
} they suggest is therefore perfect.
} Your proposed system of gold is perfect for these troubled times. In
} one fell swoop we enrich the poor (or at least those who have been
} left a small gold ornament by their forebears), annoy Mr Putin (which
} sounds very much like the French for "sex worker"), and provide 4%
} extra for overthrowing the bourgeoisie (anyone who was left *two*
} gold ornaments by their forebears).
} You owe the Oracle a 4% pay-rise, or I go on strike (which involves
} hitting Zadoc with a match).