Sunday, July 13, 2008

Fable/Parable about Power

Once a small group of powerful men ruled over a kingdom. They determined what the people should say to outsiders, and how the people should present themselves. And the people chafed under the authority and the control of the rulers.

Then the people were set free. The ruling party were removed from office and were told "Now, you will serve us, and no longer tell us what we can wear, and how we can act, and what words we can use." And the former rulers had to accept the decision of the people.

But before long, the people began to realise they had no understanding of fashion, or of decorous language, and they realised that the outside world was large and sophisticated, and unless they spoke a certain way, or dressed in appropriate attire, they would be dismissed as ignorant peasants from a backwoods country.

So they began to ask their former rulers for advice on how to speak, and how to dress, and where to travel, and who to address in the outside world. And the former rulers advised them on all these things to the point where it appeared indeed that the word of the rulers still ruled, except now they ruled because the people demanded their words and paid close heed to them.

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