Tuesday 13 September 2011

Ed Over The Parapet

Today is the Day Of Reckoning, people. Not - I might hasten to add - in the theological sense of the term (although I've no reason to doubt that such a day will come as the Nicene Creed and Holy Writ inform us); this is small beer by comparison. Nevertheless, for Edweird The Milliner - the fly agaric-led Dear Leader and Commander-In-Chief of the magic mushroom-masticating Redistributionist Faction, it is a significant crisis event.

Today, he appears before those infernal powers with whom he bargained his soul for the fleeting will-o-the-wisp of leadership, and the vainglory that accompanies it. Edweird was anointed and crowned Holy Emperor of the Faction by a small and exceedingly influential cabal whose malign influence pervades Northumbrian Redistributionism. He was elevated to his present position of imaginary splendour by the Trade Guild Barons.

Now, the aforesaid kingmakers - despite their shady position as eminences grises - are neither cultured, subtle nor educated men; despite their (at best) semi-literacy and their appalling ignorance of Holy Doctrine, they wield power by far in excess of their collective intellectual attainments. These Barons are heads of various Guilds throughout the realm that purport to represent the interests of their members. In the mists of antiquity, this was indeed the case - and still applies to a certain extent today. Coopers, ploughmen, wainwrights, boatbuilders, tanners, brewers and members of a plethora of other trades banded together for mutual support in order to present a united front before their often ruthless and exploitative overlords. However, in the fulness of time, these associations of tradesmen were influenced by the hallucinogenic leaven of Redistributionism, and their leaders - who as ordinary, slow and plain-speaking men of one syllable formerly represented their members for no other cause than love and duty - became professional, and suddenly acquired the expensive tastes of the very overlords they faced in negotiation. Nowadays, they are paid - from the contributions of their members - salaries that individual tradesmen can only fantasise about.

Every year - before the Annual Unfortunates' Outing and Picnic of the various factions, the Trade Guild Barons convene their own parody, and in true Redistributionist fashion, they parade their impressive powers of ignorance behind a programme of speeches, side-shows and entertainments. The ordinary members soak up vast amounts of ale and mead, which are employed to wash down their bread and cheese; these beverages also serve to anaesthetise them from the storm of vacuous rhetorical fury evidenced in the ensuing speeches. Magic mushrooms are chewed in vast quantities. The Barons also masticate the sacred fungi - but their food and beverage intake shows a refinement of taste that is inversely proportional to their level of education.

Since Edweird was appointed to his sacred duty last year, he has a great deal of explaining to do before the assembled throng - especially since the fair intentions with which he wooed their support in his Leadership election campaign have mysteriously dissipated...

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