The ‘Hand of the King’

The views expressed are the authors own and do not necessarily reflect those of Yukon Free Press, or any of it’s affiliates

The HBO mini-series “Game of Thrones” is a popular TV drama/fantasy show.

Set in a mock medieval Europe, it focuses on the posturing and politics of Westeros (a parody of Great Britain) and rival mainland kingdoms. This rollicking entertainment has something for everyone in the audience. From castles to immense walls of ice, fortified cities to beautiful sweeping land and seascapes, set in deserts, temperate to tropical farms, forests, mountains and ice-fields.

With action, betrayals, deceit, convoluted plots, pageantry, opulence and violence.   The characters portrayed, run the gamut of the very highest in society (kings and queens), to the very lowest (beggars and slaves), including barbarian hordes and zombies. With plenty of graphic bloodshed, nudity, gratuitous sexuality, magical beasts, pagan cults, monotheism, war and witchcraft thrown in, every episode is a ripping good time. Every noble lord, desires a crown, or “the crown” and a seat on the iron throne. Some great nobles and kings are willing to break and make alliances, fund, plot, start, insurrections, rebellions, wars, or commit patricide and regicide, to ascend to the throne.  The lesser nobles make alliances with those more powerful, plot, hope to profit, and advance their family fortunes in turbulent times – survival is paramount.  Powerful men cut their enemies down publicly, lesser men plot to poison or stab their enemies in the back. Much like the politically correct appear to do today.

Every new king appoints an advisory council and a “Hand of the King”, to manage the daily affairs of state. With debauchery and diplomacy as a full-time job, it’s good to be the king. However, the Hand must be at least a foot taller (in IQ points), than the councilors and everyone else in the bureaucracy. Much like the new premier’s chief of staff appears.

If the Hand isn’t three or four moves ahead of his council and staff at all times, he doesn’t last long in office. His departure is often sudden and messy. An astute Hand removes those he can’t trust and replaces them with loyal functionaries. Premier Sandy Silver appears to be embracing the appointees and bureaucrats that former NDP and YP monarchs have left behind.

Premier Sandy Silver, the first of his name, protector of the realm, has named David Morrison “Hand of the King”. The premier’s chief of staff, Morrison, is a former Yukon Energy Corp. top executive. After retiring from public service, Morrison joined the Yukon Liberal Party and very quickly attached himself to the man who would be king. Morrison, knows the inner workings of bureaucracy, but is he the tallest in the realm?

Old prospectors and clever plotters know: tall men cast long shadows, but sometimes, a very small man can cast a very large shadow.


Wade Carrell – Whitehorse


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