The tale of the wicked giant: Part 7

The Tale of the Wicked Giant, by Sir Bob Jones, part seven. (If you’ve missed the previous instalments, just click on ExPFC in blue at the bottom of the page to catch up).

So New Zealand struggled on while Government as with all wicked tyrants throughout history, built up his supporters. By the late twentieth century over half of the people were on his payroll as helpers, do-gooders or followers and to support them Government had taken Thursday’s produce from those left working.

Many people fled New Zealand and there was much rumbling of discontent by those left behind but Government foolishly took no notice and listened only to the praise of the do-gooders, being impressed by their degrees in sociology.

Some of the brighter and braver people openly rebelled and worked out ways to profit without producing so that Government could not take from them. Government did not worry about them for they were few in number, most of the people being too afraid of him to do such things.

But the do-gooders were distraught at the clever ones’ success and they cried out to Government to punish them and to the helpers to make traps to catch them with but always the clever ones escaped. The helpers protested to Government, ‘We cannot trap the clever ones for they always escape and this is unfair when the other people have to give up their produce.’

There is only one answer,’ they told Government. ‘You must seize their property.’

‘But how will I know who they are?’ asked Government.

‘That’s easy,’ replied the helpers. ‘Because for many years we have taken all the produce of the people other than enough to keep them alive, the clever ones are those still with property. You must therefore declare all property to be yours in the name of fairness and the common good.’ Government did so and the clever ones left New Zealand for other lands where they were followed by many more of the people. Eventually he forbade people to leave New Zealand.

The people became bitter at working so hard for so little return and they formed into many factions. The farmers grouped together, the builders had their organisation as did the factory workers, the manufacturers, the teachers, the nurses, the fishermen and all the other groups and trades and professions in New Zealand and each appealed to Government to take less from their faction and punish the others by taking more from them.

Government was delighted at this development for it meant he was safe from the people’s wrath so long as they were divisive among themselves. He worked out an easy formula to handle the situation. Whenever a faction appealed to him for money he would condemn them loudly saying to all of the other people, ‘Look what these selfish builders or teachers (such as the case was) are demanding I do. They are asking for special treatment at your expense. They are wreckers selfishly disregarding you all.’ Always it worked, for the rest of the people would forget their own faction to unite in their condemnation of the appealing one.

So it came to pass that the people remaining grew weary of working hard when Government took nearly all their produce and they stopped working and produced just enough for themselves which they bartered with each other. Government was angry and told the people they must work so the people went back to the farms and factories but they only pretended to do so and produced almost nothing.

Government now had less to give the helpers, do-gooders and followers and soon they began to grumble and cursed Government, saying he was not a God after all.

New Zealand was no longer a happy land. The bush crept back over the once rich farm land. When the machines in the factories broke, they were not repaired. Gangs of louts who had been told by the do-gooders that they were victims of society and that society owed them a living, became enraged when that living was no longer forthcoming and plundered and raped. No one stopped them because the police had not been paid for two months and did not care and many of them joined with the louts in their plundering.

Government was puzzled. He remembered his early years when the people had been happy, peaceful and hardworking and were nice to one another and had admired him.

It makes no sense,’ he confided to his chief helpers, ‘for in those days I was not nearly as big and strong as I am now and I knew very little about anything except protection, whereas now I know everything.’

To be continued…

If you’re enjoying Sir Bob’s writing (even though this is from 1978), his blog will give you a regular dose of his reality.