Sammy Stuffit

Sammy Stuffit — you can read the story here — has a problem. He loves to get more and more stuff, but needs more and more places to stash his stuff… and a massive transportation network to bring all his stuff from one place to another.

Eventually, he realizes that he doesn’t actually do anything with most of his stuff, getting nothing but the (increasingly empty) satisfaction of owning more stuff. He reaches an epiphany: it really does feel better to give his stuff away, to those who would get greater joy form it than he does.

Sammy Stuffit — you can read the story here — has a problem. He loves to get more and more stuff, but needs more and more places to stash his stuff… and a massive transportation network to bring all his stuff from one place to another.

Eventually, he realizes that he doesn’t actually do anything with most of his stuff, getting nothing but the (increasingly empty) satisfaction of owning more stuff. He reaches an epiphany: it really does feel better to give his stuff away, to those who would get greater joy form it than he does.


This simple children’s story would make a nice, rather uplifting Traveller adventure, with some rewriting here and there to up the tech level involved.

I would set up the first half of the campaign just letting the PCs get a grasp of the situation in their own way: some minor problems should be thrown in to spice things up and keep things active, but the real goal is for them to grasp the insanity they are involved in.

Then, they should be encouraged to get the Corporate Executive/Noble to open his eyes, and see the wealth trap he is caged in. How they do this is up to them: it also depends on how the Referee roleplays the moneyman. What is the crack the PCs can use to pry open Duke/CEO Stuffit’s eyes? Personality is key here… and, possibly, a shared history and connection.

Finally, Stuffit’s eyes are opened, and all that stuff begins to be given away to the general public, with a special focus on those who need it most. This is a great day: but the PCs should be given some responsibility on deciding who gets all of Sammy Stuffit’s stuff? He has a LOT of stuff: much of it is just junk, but some of it is very expensive and very powerful, in the right (or wrong!) hands.

If the PCs avoid the dangers of Good Intentions + Ignorance, and successfully gets most of that stuff into the hands that needs it most, they should be rewarded: with some money, sure, but with quite a bit of public respect – even in Noble society! – and some positive shifts in their part of the Imperium.

Maybe the region can make a faster recovery from the Virus infection, or the worlds can recover more quickly after a no-virus interstellar war. Perhaps other wealthy people follow the example of Sammy Stuffit, decreasing their wealth (“From unimaginable to simply vast”) but enriching the population.

(For a while: charity is a good thing, but it does not make a society wealthy: capitalism does.

But if the Elite decides to go even further along the Holy Road, they can start to

  1. cut away the rules and laws that suppress competition, and so enhance just rule while – yes – weakening their own wealth and position.
    1. “You mean that the rules no longer exist to serve us, the Right Sort? What madness is this?”
    2. “It’s called Justice, something even better than Charity. It is better to give than to receive, so Charity exists mainly to spiritually bless the giver while he materially blesses the receiver. But all stand equal before Justice.”
    3. “Good thing that we, the Dear Leader/the Right Sort/the Party/the Aristocracy/the Priesthood, will get to define Justice.”
    4. Wrong. You aren’t the Lawgiver. God is.”
  2. take on more and more apprentices and promising commoners into their businesses, even spinning them off entirely so poor commoners have a chance to become rich commoners.

Charity is merely the spark. Giving away money and stuff can be commendable, if you do it right… but giving yourself and your time to others, for their enrichment and betterment, is the real fire.

At no time do I suggest that the State increases the tax burden: I remain uninterested in merely transferring stuff to the local Dear Leader and some new Ruling Class (government bureaucrats and Party honchos, rather than business executives and blueblood aristocrats). Nor am I impressed by sharing wealth at the point of a gun: that’s mere theft under colour of law.

Better Sammy Stuffit keep all his stuff and the Rule of Law preserved, than have it taken at gunpoint by some Smiling Leader and his pals… and little people lose the protection of the Law. Powerless stuff cannot harm me: lawless armed men, full of their own self-righteousness and eager to steal in the Name of the People Themselves, definitely can!


Interested Traveller Referees should consider looking into the more famous children stories. Most of them are just ho-hum, of course, but there are some interesting jewels-in-the-rough out there.

<Pause>

Yes, it’s OK to use the original Grimm fairy tales, but you don’t have to stay there! A Traveller’s life is more than just raw terror and desperate escapes from uncharted worlds and cryptic enemies.

Unless you are a Scout, of course.

This simple children’s story would make a nice, rather uplifting Traveller adventure, with some rewriting here and there to up the tech level involved.

I would set up the first half of the campaign just letting the PCs get a grasp of the situation in their own way: some minor problems should be thrown in to spice things up and keep things active, but the real goal is for them to grasp the insanity they are involved in.

Then, they should be encouraged to get the Corporate Executive/Noble to open his eyes, and see the wealth trap he is caged in. How they do this is up to them: it also depends on how the Referee roleplays the moneyman. What is the crack the PCs can use to pry open Duke/CEO Stuffit’s eyes? Personality is key here… and, possibly, a shared history and connection.

Finally, Stuffit’s eyes are opened, and all that stuff begins to be given away to the general public, with a special focus on those who need it most. This is a great day: but the PCs should be given some responsibility on deciding who gets all of Sammy Stuffit’s stuff? He has a LOT of stuff: much of it is just junk, but some of it is very expensive and very powerful, in the right (or wrong!) hands.


If the PCs avoid the dangers of Good Intentions + Ignorance, and successfully gets most of that stuff into the hands that needs it most, they should be rewarded: with some money, sure, but with quite a bit of public respect – even in Noble society! – and some positive shifts in their part of the Imperium.

Maybe the region can make a faster recovery from the Virus infection, or the worlds can recover more quickly after a no-virus interstellar war. Perhaps other wealthy people follow the example of Sammy Stuffit, decreasing their wealth (“From unimaginable to simply vast”) but enriching the population.

Certainly, having the Elite mix their wealth and time — and their physical presence — with the lower classes means vulnerability: but if the Elite refuse to give into fear and retreat and hide in Kremlins and Palaces and Secured Sites and Hidden Bases, they will greatly increase their legitimacy, their Right to Lead.

“Good servants become leaders, accepting responsibility and acting to better the world leads to actual power and influence. But isolation behind physical walls and managed media networks lead to death.”


Charity is a good thing, but it does not make a society wealthy: capitalism does.

If the Elite decides to go even further along the Holy Road, they can start to

  1. cut away the rules and laws that suppress competition, and so enhance just rule while – yes – weakening their own wealth and position.
    1. “You mean that the rules no longer exist to serve us, the Right Sort? What madness is this?”
    2. “It’s called Justice, something even better than Charity. It is better to give than to receive, so Charity exists mainly to spiritually bless the giver while he materially blesses the receiver. But all stand equal before Justice.”
    3. “Good thing that we, the Dear Leader/the Right Sort/the Party/the Aristocracy/the Priesthood, will get to define Justice.”
    4. Wrong. You aren’t the Lawgiver. God is.”
  2. take on more and more apprentices and promising commoners into their businesses, even spinning them off entirely so poor commoners have a chance to become rich commoners.

Charity is merely the spark. Giving away money and stuff can be commendable, if you do it right… but giving yourself and your time to others, for their enrichment and betterment, is the real fire.

At no time do I suggest that the State increases the tax burden, or that the Elite decide to Share Wealth that does not belong to them. (Yes, I’m looking at you, Dulinor!)

I remain uninterested in merely transferring stuff to the local Dear Leader and some new Ruling Class (government bureaucrats and Party honchos, rather than business executives and blueblood aristocrats). Nor am I impressed by sharing wealth at the point of a gun, due to the word of the Leader or a Public Vote: that’s mere theft under colour of law.

Better Sammy Stuffit keep all his stuff and the Rule of Law preserved, than have it taken at gunpoint by some Smiling Leader and his pals… and little people lose the protection of the Law. Powerless stuff cannot harm me: lawless armed men, full of their own self-righteousness and eager to steal in the Name of the People Themselves, definitely can!


Interested Traveller Referees should consider looking into the more famous children stories. Most of them are just ho-hum, of course, but there are some interesting jewels-in-the-rough out there.

<Pause>

Yes, it’s OK to use the original Grimm fairy tales, but you don’t have to stay there! A Traveller’s life is more than just raw terror and desperate escapes from uncharted worlds and cryptic enemies.

Unless you are a Scout, of course.

About Alvin Plummer

I'm working to build a better world, a world that blesses Christ and is blessed by Him. I hope that you're doing the same!
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