How to prove you’re qualified to be a British citizen

David Boyle brings us news that one of the sample questions in the ‘Britishness test’, which immigrants must pass if they wish to become British citizens, is

to define a quango.

As David comments:

It really is extraordinary, though perhaps not very surprising, that Whitehall Man believes knowing the meaning of government acronyms is one of those pieces information which defines Britishness – alongside knowledge of Shakespeare and all the panoply of English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish culture.

For those unsure of the answer (go on, admit it, it’s not like Jacqui Smith will have you forcibly repatriated or anything), the answer is:

An organization or agency that is funded by the taxpayer but accountable only to Whitehall, and should immediately be abolished is financed by a government but that acts independently of it.

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2 Comments

  • Quasi autonomous non governmental organisation?

    Am I right?

  • Right, Phil, although the government now likes to talk about ‘non-departmental public bodies’ instead, since nobody talks positively about quangos.

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