Two Bit Hack: Part 7

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Pecking Orders

Chickens do everything as a group. They eat chicken feed as a group then as if it were some sort of law they go scratch for worms or graze on grass and weeds as a group while all the while the roosters watch over the entire flock in part to make sure everyone is safe and in part to make sure everyone is keeping in line with the actions of the group. Many a day I watched this as I sat outside watching the chickens outside the asylum. Only rarely did a hen or a young rooster stray from the agenda and when they did they soon found themselves under attack by the others. In that way the pecking order was established. The only exceptions are older birds with seniority enough to do as they like and outcasts.

With Thor gone I suggested to The Brain that we repeal all taxes. He was resistant at first until I explained to him that I was much too old to twist arms and crack skulls and he wouldn't last 2 minutes against me, much less the many younger and stronger men lurking about Asylumland. His first order of business was to announce a repeal of all taxes and up his popularity to the point that come election day his opponent only received one vote.

Truth be told, taxation for anything more than infrastructure and basic needs is nothing more than graft and without a standing army-- Thor-- The Brain had very little the others could see as necessary to their survival. In the weeks that followed The Brain went into overtime trying to dream up things they needed him for. While I had hoped to separate the judicial branch from the administrative branch, with so little to do, The Brain seized upon the chance to preside over conflicts as a means to make himself important.

Despite the fact that he was some sort of an intellectual genius, The Brain, for whatever reasons, had been at the bottom of the food chain his entire life. Now that he had a taste of being on top he was desperate to stay there. Of course, without taxation there were few perks so The Brain decided he should preside over all disputes. For a fee. And to make sure his rules were followed he offered to split the proceeds with a few of the bigger and stronger residents of Asylumland.

The Napoleon complex had taken hold and fear was its motivator.

Some shrinks promote the idea that there's no such thing as a Napoleon complex. They're full of shit. The Brain was suffering from an inferiority complex and his small stature had everything in the world to do with it. Especially after having watched Thor beat Freebird almost to death. Sure, Thor was a giant but Freebird was a pretty big brawler himself. That's why he had the nerve to stand up to Thor in the first place. As for The Brain: if he measured over five feet tall he was wearing elevator shoes. They guy was scared to death and desperate to stay in power.

Of course, for an intellectual genius he sure could do some really stupid things. For example: his greed had lead him to appoint himself as judge, jury and executioner demanding authority over all disputes in an insane asylum. Was that insane or what? Before he knew it he was spending almost every minute of every day presiding over other people's problems. As is always the case in any trial in any court, somebody looses. And being that the loosers had to pay court costs to The Brain they usually came out of court hating him more than they hated the person they went to court against. Hell, even the winners came out of court unhappy with The Brain's solutions.

Can you see where I'm going with this? The President's popularity ratings were dropping faster than an atom bomb over Nagasaki and for The Brain, the fallout was going to be almost as bad.

"I need to talk to you," The Brain said.

"Well Asylumland isn't really a free country," I smiled, "but talk anyway."

"There's talk of another election soon," The Brain said. "They want to get rid of me."

"So what are you going to do?" I asked.

"I want you to put more money in circulation," The Brain answered. "Make 'em think they're rich."

"But they won't be rich and the money can't buy them anything more than they can buy now," I questioned, "what good will that do?"

"Just do it." The Brain ordered.

"I don't think so." I replied.

"Then I'll appoint someone else to the federal reserve," The Brain grumbled.

"You just do that," I said. "I'll just go on vacation until the next President gets voted into office."

"Fine then!" The Brain shouted as he stomped away. For him it was the beginning of the end.

Continue To Part 8: Taking Care Of Business