Ukraine’s Tank Problem

It seems to be a case of little provision for so much…

When culture war games trend lethal

The right-wing ecosphere throws an idiot ball into the civic discourse with…

The year ahead

Most people turn away from politics over the holiday period when the…

Cutting Your Power Bills In Half And Other…

A few years ago there was a scam where people were promised…

Values Based Capitalism: The Imperative of Defining Commitment…

By Denis Bright Editorial insiders at The Weekend Australian (28-29 January 2023)…

A walk in the forest

Bayerischer Wald can be just as hard to get to than it…

An Emergent Premier Chris Minns - Uniting Sydney…

By Denis Bright After more than a decade in Opposition, NSW Labor is…

Forget Australia Day And Celebrate: Rum Rebellion Day…

After pointing out for a number of years that January 26th isn't…


A Serf in the time of plague …

Greetings, and salutations on vellum even, to my fellow manorial slaves. There be plague in the realm!

Just did my six-monthly visit to the village market, the one held in the shade of the Baron’s castle, but there was nothing there. No skinned lamprey or skewered rabbit stewing with high and lovely rancidness in the heat of the sun, there were no regaling bards, the only other Peasants I saw were fighting over small rolls of parchment squares. The days of woe are upon us! Thank Boudicca of old that I grow my own turnips!

Met the Town Cryer on my way back to my hovel. He yelled at me from a great distance …

“Hey Serf, yeah you. Normally I don’t waste time acclaiming at you lot but today I’m delivering a new proclamation and I’m exclaiming it all across the realm, in a really loud voice. The King, queen, baron, lord, knight, duke, or whoever else last razed the land, and had their foot firmly on your yokel neck, now officially loves you for all to see!”

I confess to having had unkind hovel type thoughts upon hearing his words. They didn’t love us Serfs yesterday, predictably they will not love us Serfs tomorrow, so what is so different about today?

I summoned up the best of my speech and said the medieval equivalent of “Huh?” – I even reached forward in time and said the Elizabethan equivalent of that wonderful profanity “God’s Teeth!” – all of which flew blithely over the Cryer’s head. He stuck to the script.

“’tis true Serf. The realm is in peril. The plague be upon us. Here’s a golden coin from the Baron, buy up big on the lamprey and rabbit and parchment squares, keep his cess-pit cleaners in work cleaning his cess-pits, save his Manor, and his power over you, and his exalted way of life from ruin!”

Oh, I thought, in a Serf sort of way, once the plague passes the plan is for everything to revert back to the way they always were. Foot on the neck of the Peasants. Continue to starve-up and tax to death the minion serf-labourers. Allow the Barons and Knights to get back to doing the best of their worst – demonising the Serfs and blaming the Peasants for being lowly poor Peasants. Now where’s the goodness in that deal I thought?

The Town Cryer, being fast and mean, must have read my thoughts …

“But be warned Serf! That gold coin shall be returned in full, and then some, once the plague passes. And there be new surveillance constables lurking the land. Anybody seen in the company of Wat Tyler is dungeon bound!”

Wat was a revolting Peasant back in 1391. He wanted all these new ‘we care for you Peasants truly ruly’ proclamations to become permanent after the plague passed. He wanted the newly dropped hovel taxes to stay that way. He wanted the Barons a little poorer and the Peasants a little richer and all standing a little closer together on fiscal common ground. He wanted, back then, this new rush of empathy for all us Serfs to become fixed in the consciousness of the realm.

Perhaps, in the modern era, he might have wanted a UBI, or a Jobs Guarantee?

From the Barons: “Keep ’em housed. Keep ’em fed. Promise ’em anything to keep ’em quiet. Once the Plague has passed we’ll march right back in again and walk all over ’em. The power, and the entitlement, remains ours!”

So stuff the exhortations of the Cryer on behalf of the Barons, I’m having a meeting and a mead with Wat Tyler tonight!

From Wikipedia: (some words about what happened just after the Black Death scoured the land) – Walter “Wat” Tyler (died 15 June 1381) was a leader of the 1381 Peasants’ Revolt in England. He marched a group of rebels from Canterbury to the capital to oppose the institution of a poll tax and to demand economic and social reforms. While the brief rebellion enjoyed early success, Tyler was killed by officers loyal to King Richard II during negotiations at Smithfield, London.

Subsequently Richard II revoked all the concessions he had made.

Like what we do at The AIMN?

You’ll like it even more knowing that your donation will help us to keep up the good fight.

Chuck in a few bucks and see just how far it goes!

Donate Button

 480 total views,  2 views today


Login here Register here
  1. Josephus

    Hear ye all, history is ever made of overweening overlords and the cyclically suffering peasants, who now and then rise up with their scythes and chop a few lordly heads, though it is true some bloke called Marx said the middle classes would replace the barons and become tyrants in their turn. But what be the difference say I, the bourgeoisie are just more vulgar as they climb upwards into their air conditioned Mac Mansions.
    Scomo is playing the socialist until he gets reelected by the angry peasants. Why do the yokels vote for their greedy and smug oppressors? Rotten education say I , too many priests or their friends doing the teaching. Too much sermonising via small screens. Opium of the people, someone said. He meant TV and smartphones of course.

    How is that for addled periods? bet I nearly beat your groanworthy rhetoric, Keith.

  2. Keith Davis

    Joshepus … pretty close, almost beat it. But I admire style when I see it!

  3. Phil Pryor

    Dick two, one of a huge queue of royal ratshit robbers and murderers, who fleeced, stole, lied, double crossed, acquired and dodged responsibility in the noble heritage of William the F—–g Conqueror and his line of poxed political perverted pontifical prelate pushed peanut potentates who have ruined British and other societies since the invasion and enslaving of Britain. Wat Tyler the hero…

  4. Keith Davis

    Phil Pryor … replace my article with your comment. Magnificent!

  5. New England Cocky

    @Phil Pryor: A truly excellent description of the democratically elected COALition misgovernment presently turning Australia into the worst third world export economy in the OECD.

  6. johno

    The saying ‘The good ole days’ needs to be turfed into the garbage can.

  7. Vikingduk

    My mate, nasty neville, he’s the bollard polisher at crime castle (aka Parliament House) and he objects greatly and bigly that youse peasants dare criticise our saintly criminals and harlots. Jeez, he says, they’ve upped me rations to a kilo of boiled liver a day and talking about a promotion to head knob polisher. Hang on a sec, just adjust this furkin merkin, offload some lice. Yeah, that’s better, a bit tight around the lug holes and those little bastards itch like buggery, not that I’ve ever tried buggery, that one time with the stuffed ferret doesn’t really count, but I’m sure buggery would itch mightily. Now, where was we, gold coins you say, no gold coins here mate, not unless ya count them chocolate ones the exalted throw from the battlements, and, really, the whipping absolutely does keep any buggerising buggers a bit quietish. Me and two fingers Tony (he feeds the crocs outside the motormouth’s door) thinking to start a clog dancing troupe, entertain the masses, keep em quiet and docile, keep em swallowing the drivel, just like a good old jellied eel, just slip down the throat, between the lug holes, fog the brain, bit like this rave.

    What else can a nomadic couscous herder do, mate, I mean, really, mind altering substances can be very beneficial, no stuffed ferrets to buggerise, the couscous can be surly little bastards and them mushies looked so good in the early morning light and all this social distancing and mongrel bastards demanding all the path, though we had a little wry larf when we heard the high court judge describe colman’s actions as disgusting, the snivelling snot placed himself above the law by detaining illegally that afghan refugee, well, actually we pissed ourselves, me and the couscous, they thought the mushies looked particularly scrumptious too, so here we are, not quite sure where here is, but we’re sure it’s somewhere and we’re sure that mind altering substances need to be added to crime castle, too many psychopaths for my liking.

    Well, if ya read this far, strong possibility you’re as bent and flucked up as me and the couscous. They want in for the clod dancing soirée. Keep ya posted.

  8. Keith Davis

    Vikingduk … generally, quite by accident I assure you, I manage to pen an article from a straight forward point of view. At other times the Muse takes over and I just let it rip. I notice that you respond to the ‘Muse’ articles – like – ‘Eating Tomatoes in Portugal.’

    I reckon your response to the above Muse article earns a left-field quirky 10 out of 10. I vaped it up.

    Ever thought of writing and publishing an article yourself … and giving me and others the pleasure of responding!

    Below is the ‘straight’ version of the above article. Quirkiness, as it occasionally should, in this case won out!

    “In 1381, just after the Black Death had scoured the realm, Wat Tyler started a peasants’ revolt.

    He organised a march on London to protest against a new poll tax, and to advocate for some positive societal and economic change (check out Wikipedia for more details).

    Early on, in order to keep things quiet and manageable and still under his control, King Richard 11 made some concessions to the peasants.

    Once the march hit London the ‘snap back’ to the way things used to be happened at the speed of light.

    Tyler was killed, and all of the concessions were quickly wiped off the King’s legislative books.

    In this modern era of COVID-19 many concessions have been made to enable working people to survive this great era of uncertainty. The old Newstart, now called JobSeeker, has been temporarily doubled. Wage subsidies are being paid to businesses. Childcare is free. Stimulus payments to the tune of $750 are being paid to the citizenry. Empathetic help, for most, is flowing out of Government like a waterfall. Both sides of politics are wanting to do more and more for the people.

    Domestic Violence Services are receiving funding; Research is receiving funding; Science is having bucket loads of funding thrown at it; Education is getting dosh. Many sectors of our society are now receiving deserved funding. Some good things are happening.

    Some of these good things should stay in place.

    COVID-19 will eventually pass.

    At the other end of the Bridge that is apparently going to save us all some dill of a politician has already stuck up a huge sign with the words SNAP BACK blinking away in garish neon lights.

    “Keep ‘em quiet. Keep ‘em fed and housed during the Plague. Keep ‘em toiling. When the Plague passes we’ll march back in and walk all over ‘em again. The Power and the Entitlement remain ours.” “

  9. wam

    Wat is on second and at 61$ we@%@^@know who is on first. With a myriad of pink batt scammer poised ready to join the banks and rwiggies in rorting the billions

    For six years I have scribbled inanely and read terrible condemnation of the rabbott et al from this site and others. Yet pretyy well effall from billy and less from Tanya, a woman who could destroy the rabbott with her little finger.

    Then billy spake well with policies that are twisted and bang the loonies kill him in qld making money but cutting themselves out of the balance they would have had under labor and now even the dreamers lord and kaye cannot see albo having influence although he might believe in miracles too???
    Vale labor till a gough, hawke or the lemon appeareth

    to copy a writer:
    there is a new menziesm younger, sharper , more autocratic and godlier than the original 2013-16-19-21-23-27-30
    No keith GFC is gone but smirko will not undersell like labor he will never let go of covid 19 his second miracle will be sold better than lourdes.

  10. wam

    ps As an ignorant economist I compare our A$ with the kiwis and we have been steadily dropping behid.

  11. Vikingduk

    Who can tell, Keith, an article based on nothing but silliness appeals to me. Certainly enjoy partaking of your silliness, particularly in these trying times. By the by, thanks for the history lesson, very enjoyable, both versions. Shit, those couscous are savaging one of the serfs, little bastards, can’t turn ya back on em. Get here, ya little shits, give the hound a bit of downtime and the little f#ckers run riot. So, we went up here from over there, which most definitely is somewhere and still the peasants find us, wait, hang on, that serf, she was bearing gifts, just take it out of her bloody paw, well, bugger me, not literally mind, a beaut stuffed ferret. High on the hog tonight ladies and germs, having stumbled upon this strange green vegetable matter, hound sniffed it out, reckons we ought ta dry it and smoke it. Yes, she is a strange hound, starting talking as a pup, about the same time we discovered the qualities of certain mushies. Hound says stop bullshitting and get back to work, them couscous aren’t herding themselves and hound sez we really should hide the evidence and also a good pagan funeral for the serf bearing gifts. But, ya know what they say, beware of serfs bearing gifts, also undertows, flash rips and cheeky lifesavers.

  12. Lambchop Simnel

    We need for our regular poster Jack Cade to chime in- he will also tell you what they did to dissidents in the Middle Ages..

    In the meantime (again) this:

  13. Lambchop Simnel

    But perhaps we need to hear from the people involved themselves:

  14. Anne Byam

    Now look what you’ve done Keith !! Opened a Pandoras Box of hysterical retorts, reports and other giggly stuff.

    But there’s a lot of serious bizzo going on here too – thank you for that, and thanks to others who have made many salient points hidden in their … um – writings ?

    Wonderfully interesting stuff – not to be read however, while drinking coffee ( or for that matter anything ) … I can’t afford a new keyboard at this present time. Have to save what I can for baked beans and rice.

    Stay safe all.

  15. Keith Davis

    Anne Byam .. yes .. a bit of serious silliness is allowed to slide in on AIMN now and then .. and I push things in that regard as much as I can!

    I know the baked beans and rice routine all too well.

  16. Jon Chesterson

    Crumbs for the plague but we’re not at the table – Morrison has more power than he ever had, all pledges will be revoked and you will be deeper in debt and interest repayments to the lords of the manor than ever before, and considerably less savings in retirement.

    Wander the streets now and go to jail, object when this is all over and off to the tower.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 2 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video, document, spreadsheet, interactive, text, archive, code, other. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop file here

Return to home page
%d bloggers like this: