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But first, a brief fable:

THE STORY OF THE EMPEROR’S NEW CLOTHES <sup>*</sup>

(Paraphrased from Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tale)

    There once was a very very vain and terrible King/Emperor who heavily taxed his subjects in order to pay for his incredibly fine wardrobe made from the most expensive clothing.

    One day, two swindlers, representing themselves as great tailors from afar, arrived and sought an audience with the Emperor. They told of an amazing new fabric they had invented, made of a very expensive gold fiber that only the best, purest, and wisest of people could see. Excited, the Emperor asked to see a sample, and the men brought forth an empty spool. “Ah, isn’t it lovely,” they asked the Emperor.

    The Emperor agreed, afraid to admit that he did not see anything because that would mean he was a dull and stupid person.

    So, to test his ministers, the Emperor brought them all in to get their opinions. Once the power of the fabric was explained to them, all agreed that this was, indeed, the finest and most beautiful cloth in the world.

    The vain Emperor ordered a new outfit be made for him, so the phony tailors took his measurements.

    The Emperor ordered the gold from the treasury be given to the supposed tailors to be spun into thread. They set about at once working day after day, pretending to cut and sew, while the Emperor and his ministers periodically came by to admire their handiwork—and to pay the enormous bills the merchants were running up in the course of their activities.

    Finally, the big day came when all the people in the land were ordered gathered to see the Emperor’s new outfit, which they had paid so much for and heard so much about.

    When he nakedly strode forth, all the people looked in disbelief and said nothing. Then they sang the praises of the miraculous new cloth. “It’s the most beautiful work I’ve ever seen!” “Magnificent!” “I wish I had such lovely fabric!” They all cheered, afraid of being denounced and called stupid and impure if they did otherwise.

    And the Emperor proudly paraded in front of his subjects, secretly worried—afraid that he would lose the crown if the people knew that he, himself, could not see the cloth that draped his body.

    Until he passed through the crowd, a small boy perched on his father’s shoulder, in his innocence cried out, “But the Emperor has nothing on!”

    “Just hear what the innocent says!” said the father. And each person whispered to another what the child had said. The word spread throughout his subjects what the little boy had said.

    Then, everyone knew that the Emperor and all his ministers had been tricked by swindlers. Now his guards and ministers, as well as the people, realized that the swindlers had not only tricked the Emperor, but he, the Emperor, had spent all their tax money, wasted on this farce.

    The Emperor heard the people murmuring. He knew they were right, but he was too proud to admit he was wrong and had been made the fool. So he drew himself up to his full height and stared down at his guards, until he caught one guard’s eye.

    The guard, looking around nervously, realizing this vain Emperor could have him imprisoned or even beheaded, averted his eyes and looked down at the ground. Then another guard, seeing that he wasn’t laughing anymore, got scared and lowered his eyes to the ground, too. Soon, all the guards, ministers, and even the children pretending to carry his invisible train of gold cloth, were staring at the ground.

    The people, seeing the ministers and guards, who a moment ago were laughing at the Emperor with them, now staring at the ground, quaking in their boots, stopped laughing and quickly bowed their heads as well.

    The little boy who had first exclaimed that the Emperor was naked, seeing all the grown-ups around him, and even his father, completely scared and subdued, bowed his head in fear!

    Then the Emperor, pulling himself up to his full height, announced to his subjects, as he marched proudly through his kingdom, “Who is to say that these are not the very finest clothes of all?”

    The Emperor held his head high and looked down his nose at the crowd determined to save his royal face from public humiliation. The Emperor continued his procession acting as though he were oblivious to his nakedness, and his ministers held the train of his invisible cloak higher than ever. The people looked on in disbelief and did nothing as the Emperor and his ministers kept marching down the street parading their naked ignorance.

    * Paraphrased from Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tale.

the moral of the story is:

    We cannot simply call the Emperor (U.S. government) on his (its) acts of deceit and manipulation of fact. His guards (FBI, CIA, DEA, etc.) are far too pwerful. His fear of shameful discovery so great he ceaselessly uses his power (through funding much of the United Nation’s and the world’s anti-drug crusades) to buy allegiance through bribery and intimidation (foreign aid, arms sales, etc.).

    Those American citizens who would dare speak out against this tyranny are often slandered as “druggies” or “dopers” and may be threatened with the loss of their jobs, income, families, and property. To win, we must drive a stake through the heart of (the U.S. government’s/DEA’s) lies, over and over and over again by hammering at them relentlessly with hard-core facts to defeat the evil of this hard-hearted Emperor (unjust cannabis laws) and even imprison these perpetrators, if necessary, to set our people free!

the authorized on-line version of Jack Herer’s “The Emperor Wears No Clothes”
text from “The Emperor Wears No Clothes” © Jack Herer
CD-ROM and web presentation © 0=2

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