SCIENCE FICTION WRITER
SCIENCE FICTION WRITER
Once upon a time in never-never land in the shadow of the mighty windmill was a little village. It was a happy village full of simple folk who got on with their daily load of tending flocks & herding cattle. This simple life had gone on for centuries and centuries and centuries - some even said too long, but these simple folk were happy and their sheep and cattle produced plenty.
Over the centuries this small village had started to grow and soon their lands started bordering on the lands of a nearby village so the local baron had come along and said "these two villages must be one". At this there were great murmurings because the people in the village under the windmill weren't very happy with some of the younger people from the nearby village. But both villages did as the baron told them, and soon both villages settled as one. And they began again their age-old ways of tending sheep and herding cattle.
But a dark cloud rose in the sky one day for there came to the village a new squire from the city. The people of the village were not happy with the new ways of this squire. And the people began to murmur and murmur.
Then matters got much worse because this land in the shadow of the mighty windmill was part of a country which was ruled by despots and evil lords. These lords were very greedy people who spent all their time thinking up schemes so that they could increase their wealth.
A few years ago these lords passed the nastiest decree the village had ever seen - these lords called this decree, the ERA. These lords announced with smiling faces "This is a new ERA of wealth for all" but the people of the village knew that this new wealth would not go to the people of the village but to the evil lords that ruled over them.
But things became worse for the people of the village because the new squire saw this new ERA as a great opportunity for changing the village from its centuries old simple ways. This squire knew that he couldn't ask the villagers if they would join the new ERA so he called on some of the older members of the village, and together they met in closed rooms and talked about the new ERA. The villagers began to murmur. Why are these people meeting with the squire behind closed doors? Soon they were wondering whether these people still had the interests of the villagers at heart. And gradually amongst the villagers murmurings grew about the Secret Seven? What are the Secret Seven doing now, they asked? But they got no answer. Many of the villagers were talking about problems in the village, and the people went to the squire and his helpers. And the Secret Seven went off to a room to meet, and the people never heard about whether the Squire was going to deal with the problem or not. And there were many murmurings in the village - even some screeching, as the people didn't know what the Secret Seven were doing.
And then one day they knew. The Secret Seven began issuing decrees, and the good people of the village followed what the decrees said.
The first decree said we must have profiling. "But what is profiling?" the people asked. The squire said "Profiling allows you to discuss with people how to improve the yields." This sounded good but the people went away unsure because they knew that profiling had been decreed by the evil lords of the land and they didn't trust it. However being good people they went away and worked very hard on the profiling and soon they produced very great profiles and the squire was very happy.
But then the people asked "We never discuss the yields, all we do is produce these great big profiles, is that right?" But the squire never answered the people because he was able to show the lords of the land these big pretty profiles.
Gradually the lords of the land introduced many more decrees, and the Secret Seven issued more and more decrees and the people of the land spent all their time dealing with the decrees. And they murmured amongst each other "We are spending all our time obeying these decrees and our yields are going down." But when they told the Secret Seven all that happened was that the Secret Seven went away to a room to discuss it, and the people never knew whether they were listening or not. And there was much murmuring in the village - and even some screeching.
Then the Secret Seven brought in the moneylenders, and the villagers began saying that the squire was not really interested in the yields from their flocks and herds. And gradually more and more the village was run by the moneylenders and the villagers moaned as their yields went down.
But the final nail in the coffin came when the squire went to a course with the evil lords in the city. And when he came back from the city he brought back what the villagers really didn't want. In the next decree the Secret Seven told the villagers that they would have to spend one day a week on PR. The villagers had to spend this time saying we are very happy. They had to paint signs saying this village has the highest yield in all the land. And the good people of the village followed what the decree said, and even one of the papers of the lord of the land said that the village was a happy village. But the villagers were murmuring - and some were even screeching, because they knew their yields were going down because they were spending one day a week on PR.
But all things were not shiny for the Secret Seven, everything didn't run smoothly because some of the village objected loudly. One such villager was WZer. He began saying that the squire did not have the interest of the village to heart and that the lords of the land were evil and only interested in increasing their wealth. The squire was not happy with this and he told WZer that he shouldn't say these things or he will take away his lands. So Wzer kept his mouth shut but further he was told by the squire that he had to wear the necklace of conformity all the time he was in the village. From then on WZer had to wear these necklaces, and he went away quietly. But there were murmurings and more murmuring - and even some screeching.
But then the evil lords turned on the squire as is their wont - they turned on miners who supported them and other workers who voted for them so why shouldn't they turn on the squire. Even though these evil lords had said we must have PR, we must have moneylenders and we must have profiles, they then said we want a list of all the yields of all the villagers. This really hurt the squire and his Secret Seven because even though all the villagers knew this list was meaningless there were many people in the land who would believe the list. As a result many people turned to the village and said what is happening to your yields? And the villagers were murmuring and murmuring and murmuring - and some were even screeching.
Then the baron decided to cause problems for the squire and his Secret Seven. He then sent a band of soldiers to the village to look round and find out about what was happening to the yields in the village. And the baron then produced a decree which told the Secret Seven that they should concentrate on their yields and not on the PR of the evil lords because the evil lords are not interested in the people of the village they are only interested in their own people. And when the people of the village read the baron's decree there was much murmuring and even some mirth because some of what they had been murmuring about was in the baron's decree. And there was much murmuring and murmuring - and even some screeching,
But the village carried on except for one of the village. For WZer was called away from a far off land where the evil lords had already caused great harm in its ways that they were now applying to their own lands. So WZer was able to throw off the necklaces of conformity which he gave as a present to the squire of the village. But WZer was also given a scroll of enlightenment to give to the squire and the Secret Seven, and on the scroll of enlightenment was written the simple words
LISTEN TO THE PEOPLE OF THE VILLAGE.
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