The Chief Circle and his ministers are getting agitated; as from midnight the Ruritanians and Vulgarians will be completely at liberty to immigrate and take advantage of Flatland's relatively-generous social service benefit system. Various ministers have been charged with finding cop-outs in order to discourage an anticipated influx of benefit-seekers, thimbleriggers and assorted human detritus. Meanwhile, for impenetrable reasons of its own, the nation of Flatvia is to adopt the bizarre currency of the League of Medland Nations (LMN).
Flatland's Supreme Court recently came out with an unwelcome judgement: two Flatologists were permitted to solemnise their union in the Flatland headquarters of this controversial organisation. Those in the know confidently predict an imminent application for charitable status that would allow the Flatologist organisation to reduce its rate bill by 80%.
Economic news has been fairly favourable, and the Flatbit has appreciated somewhat against the FlatUS Dollar. The stock exchanges of FlatUS and Flatland have both enjoyed strong runs during 2013, assisted by their respective central banks. This has not translated into joy amongst High Street retailers, and the leading chain store Flatenhams has issued a profits warning. Its shares now trade at only some 35% of the price at which it was refloated a few years ago, after spending a short but profitable period in the tender, caring arms of public-spirited venture capitalists. Who would have imagined during that IPO process that the public was being offered a pup?
With the turn of the year, the LMN acquires a new presidency - none other than Hellenland, the country that in recent years has had such difficulty in meeting its debt commitments. Some jokes write themselves.
The Chief Circle has commanded me to send fraternal greetings to all readers, and best wishes for 2014.