How stupid is this ill-thought-out idea? The number four is used arbitrarily here, only because 5x5 wouldn't attract much attention. I'd like to say it was calculated on the basis of something, but that would be bollocks. It came to me in a dream, or whatever the equivalent of that is when you're loaded with Stella. Perhaps state of delirium would be a better description.
Here I go. The "levels" are described in Roman Numerals to try to get rid of any connotation of the low numbers being in any way superior to the high ones.
Level I has four people.
Each of those four people has four people, on level II, connecting to them.
Of those four people, each has a further four people, on level III, connecting to them, and so on.
A gifted mathematician such as I (ROFL) would conclude that, for every level, the number of people involved would be increased by the number on the now "bottom" level multiplied by that arbitrary four.
Once you get to the level XI, there are five and a half million people involved. Actually 5,592,404, just to show I've worked it out.
There are several things you can do with this number of people when they're all involved.
One is to charge them all a pound and tell them they can have a share of the rest and thus they will all become rich. This is, sadly, illegal, because it is a good way of getting very rich, very quickly. There was such a scheme, called the Circle of Gold, sometime in the eighties (as I remember), started by the City, and finished quite quickly. That shows how clever/honest the bankers were then.
Another is to create a product, like fake perfume, and sell it via this route. This is not illegal as such but probably should be. Amway do it. They also use clever psychological tricks to rope people in, such as their slogan "without Amway there is no hope/future/afterlife (delete whichever options don't work for you)".
Another would be to start a revolution, wherein there are four people (the arbitrary four) at the top, and these would be able to direct the ones underneath and make a right old rumpus before the black helicopters had any idea what was going on.
Here's the stupid idea though - call the four at the top "the Prime Ministers", then all of the next levels up to level IV "Parliament" (that's a total of 340, which is quite enough), then the seven levels from level V to level XI "Anyone who has even a remote interest in how the country is run". That leaves about 55,000,000 people (call them, for the sake of argument, "Children, the clinically insane, and people who are happy to watch Strictly Come Dancing").
I think it would work. I even have a name for it - I'd call it "Democracy".
I know, I know. It needs some thought. Like how the Fab Four get to the top. And how you get them down again if they succumb to the power bug. Although the weight of those five and a half million decision makers would probably be a good start.
Is it bollocks? I know loads of people who think so. I also know loads who don't. And sadly, I know millions who don't care.
I do know, truly, that unless something as drastic as this happens, my country will be governed by someone I don't want.
And I know also that I want to be somewhere between levels V and XI.
Anyone up for the Fab Four? Anyone think of a good use for a couple of redundant houses in Downing Street, London?