It was the royal prerogative to issue monopolies to their friends, usually as rewards for a job well done. Joyful as this may have been for the King and Queen’s cronies, for merchants responsible for actually shipping certain products it was onerous. For instance, if King GarGar issued a monopoly on red wines to a friend, then the people who import red wine would have to do so under the lucky person’s name. In essence, it was giving people a cut of the profits that they did nothing to earn.
When parliament tried to curb the practice through legislation, Queen Pirouette personally tore up the draft of the bill that was sent to her in the top secret red box. While this did little to improve the merchants’ opinions of the crown, it did create an atmosphere of intense competition for royal favor, primarily among the nobility- those who had the most ready access to the King and Queen who ruled jointly as equal partners in government.