Sir Greed and the Knights of Exploitation

Sir Greed banged his fist on the round table, “Bring me truffles!” he thundered, as the serving staff in BHS livery went scurrying. “’Tis treachery! The May Queen talks softly of helping the poor, yet it is the avowed intent of this fair kingdom to crush their will and keep them in grinding poverty, lest they get ideas and organise resistance!”

Knight on horse
Sir Greed rode out on his black stallion

He rode out of Castle Green at the head of his personal escort and made his way to the commission of poor men to give evidence for his alleged misdeeds. His squire, a mean and indolent fellow called Chappell, rode beside him.

“Chappell, heed my words. These villains will ask why I favoured thee with half my lands, to which you must reply, ‘My Lord put me in charge of the upkeep of the serfs in good faith, but I lacked the knowledge of my wise master to manage the estates and provide for their welfare’. Got it?”

“Yes, my Lord. And I shall remain in your favour by not mentioning that you stripped the silver and gold from all the holy places to pay for your new royal yacht.” Sir Greed glared at his snivelling underling, knowing full well that his deviousness and avarice had bound him to the villain.

“Look, my Lord! The May Queen awaits you before the humble parliament shed.”

“Good day, my Queen, to what do I owe this pleasure?” The portly knight said, quivering in his saddle as he attempted an ungainly bow.

“It is no pleasure of mine, Sir Greed! I have come to warn you not to mock my councillors and give truthful evidence, for I intend to reform this kingdom and reverse the culture of theft and oppression that has become your hallmark.”

“My Queen, I will doff my cap and tell them what they want to hear, but we both know your kingdom is based on a wealthy elite exploiting the serfs for personal gain, aggrandisement and displays of riches. For every rich man, there must be hundreds of serfs to support him, working his fields for a pittance, fighting his battles, and being grateful for a rat-infested hovel to live in and a handful of grain to feed his lice-ridden family.”

The May Queen eyed him with a cold, well-practiced withering look, and answered in a low and threatening voice. “That may be how we want it, Sir Greed, but we must at least make a show of appearing to care for the welfare of the legions of poor, for without their labour, our kingdom would falter and we would not be able to continue our lavish lifestyles… beware the dangers of arrogance and cruelty! They have been the undoing of many Lords, and I will move swiftly to strip you of your titles if you do not play along with our mocking game of deception and false hope for our minions!”

Sir Greed, suitably chastised, went before the commission, and smiled like a devious crook as he rebuffed charges of dishonesty, avarice, and cruelty to his people. For in truth, the commission had no powers to strip away his lands or titles, merely the power to chastise and humbly request some coins for the alms box.

Sir Greed and Squire Chappell rode away, laughing at the powerless rage and frustration of the councillors, and dismissing the paltry amount paid into the alms box.

“We shall recover our outlay with higher taxes, my Lord,” the heartless squire quipped.

As they rode through a dark, foreboding forest, making their way slowly under overhanging trees, their path was suddenly blocked by a band of outlaws.

“Out of our way, vermin,” Sir Greed demanded.

The leader of the group, an ageing man with a grey scaggy beard, approached on a mangy nag. “My Lord, I am The Corbineer, leader of, well, one of a number of bands of outlaws in this forest, having been duly elected by my peers, and I must now ask you for your purse, as we have many mouths to feed.” He waved a short, bent sword, and encouraged his men to laugh at his boldness.

“Out of my way, scum!” Sir Greed replied, spurring his horse forward and brushing aside the dandy bandit. He rode away on his black charger, closely followed by his whimpering squire. They soon cleared the forest and turned back to see their entourage beaten and stripped of their clothing.

“Shall we ride back to aid our followers, my lord?” the panting Chappell enquired, feigning bravery.

“No need,” Sir Greed replied, “There are plenty more where they came from. I shall send a group of knights from the Order of The Exploiters to deal with this troublesome Corbineer. The poor are too divided with their village rivalries to come to his aid. We will not kill him but instead capture him and keep him in our Palace of Westminster as an example to others of how hope of advancement is in vain and they must accept their subservient position in our kingdom. As my Uncle Avarice once said, ‘It’s their hope that kills ‘em’.”

They laughed as they rode to Castle Green, oblivious to the cries and screams of their abandoned followers, safe in the knowledge that order had been upheld in the Kingdom of Fear.


To find out about the future of the Kingdom of Fear…





On Saturday, 12th September 2015, the UK Labour Party elected a new leader, Jeremy Corbyn, by a majority on nearly 60% of the vote. He is the candidate the right wing of British politics feared the most, as his plain-speaking advocacy for the rights of the working people and those disadvantaged in society has brought sneers and character assassination, showing their fear of his strong political stance.

Corbyn is now challenged to unite a Labour Party battered by the UK General Election result. A humiliating defeat characterised by the fragmentation of the working class vote, leaving Labour staring at a bare cupboard. They must now come together and reflect on the lessons learned from their unexpected general election wipe-out, that handed an undeserved win to the surprised Conservatives.

It’s vitally important for the future of British society that the Labour Party get their act together and challenge the dogma of the ruling Conservatives, whose greed-driven agenda is leading to a divided society. Like schoolyard bullies, they are waging war on those less fortunate in society by levelling a 12% across-the-board cut in the welfare bill, regardless of the effect it is having on the sick, poor and disabled. Those with genuine need of help should be supported, not demonised and driven to despair and, in some cases, suicide (as recent figures have shown following a well-supported public petition to force government to release figures on welfare reform victims).

We need a strong Labour Party in opposition to hold the government accountable for their rob-from-the-poor to give-to-the-rich policies. Corbyn can lead that resistance, and show the British people that there is an alternative vision for our society, based on common decency and equitable wealth sharing. I like his talk about re-nationalising utility companies. Why not? At a time when the top 1% of world society own 90% of all wealth, there is a need to try to redress the balance, and show to the rest of the world that there is another way than pure unchecked capitalist greed.

Congratulations to Jeremy Corbyn, a man of the people for the people. The Conservatives ask nervously; “what does he plan to do?” Well, he has said it in his acceptance speech: “No one will be left on the sidelines, everyone should have equal opportunities – that’s what Labour is about…we need to develop economic policies that deal with the issue of inequality.” They must now convince the country that this can be achieved without undermining the strength of the economy.

Let’s listen and give them a chance. Britain can do better…