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In the forthcoming referendum, students at the University of Edinburgh will go to the polls to make that once-in-a-lifetime decision which will determine all of our futures.

Should we pull out of Appleton Tower?

Those in the “Remain” camp insist that Appleton Tower is the only realistic means of securing jobs and stability. David Cameron, speaking at a rally which was held at a suitable distance from the building, conceded that, “yes I know that Appleton Tower is not perfect – there are many things about it which irritate me intensely. But at the same time I believe that Appleton Tower can be reformed and I have been working hard with Appleton Tower to deliver a better deal for the future, the best of all worlds.”

Nigel Farage, speaking for the “Leave” camp, hit back immediately. “Mr Cameron’s so-called reforms show that Appleton Tower is unreformable. First they caked it with a brick-coloured dust during the Fringe. Now they’re trying to replace its cladding. They should just admit that the whole thing is structurally inept from top to bottom. Appleton Tower might have been originally built for idealistic reasons back in the 1960s, but when it comes to practicalities people’s expectations have now risen. They want windows that open and a guarantee that they’re safe from asbestos poisoning. What’s more, Appleton Tower is totally undemocratic. We all have to live with a construction which was designed decades ago and which none of us have ever had a vote on.”

David Cameron hit back almost at once. “I’m not saying that the university could not survive outside of Appleton Tower. I’m proud of this university and it could do perfectly well on its own. But the Leave side cannot even tell us what life outside Appleton Tower will look like. They promise that we can move over to the Informatics Forum and live in a fantasy world of flying robots, spiral staircases, Dutch beanbags, and basic architectural competence. They want us to have our cake and eat it! What I’m saying is that we’re better off in a reformed Appleton Tower, in a safer and more secure…”

Unfortunately, at that very minute, a gust of wind blew some flakes of concrete off the side of the building and Mr Cameron took a direct hit. He was carried away on a stretcher.

In the Appleton Tower referendum, students will not only have to weigh up narrow decisions about economics. They will need to make a far broader judgement about our culture, our heritage, and who we are as a people. Culturally, Appleton Tower is widely praised for being the second most beautiful site to be named in honour of the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Sir Edward Appleton, after the “heavily eroded” Appleton crater on the moon’s northern hemisphere. It is also argued that working day-to-day within Appleton Tower’s uniquely dystopian setting has inspired countless students to go out and fight for a better future, rather as the Soviet Union had led everybody to reject everything about it.

There are equally concerns that pulling out of Appleton Tower will generate profound global instability. Demolishing the building would most likely cause gigantic clouds of asbestos to roll across Europe, polluting farmland, contaminating rivers, laying waste to cities and exterminating all human life.

Speaking from his hospital bed, David Cameron protested that, “I can see what you’re trying to do here… You’re turning Appleton Tower into a metaphor for the European Union. This is deeply unfair and I’m not going to have this disastrously corrupt and unstable edifice compared to Appleton Tower… Oh shit, what have I just said?”