Barrent is sentenced and sent to a planet Omega. He is said to be a murderer. Omega is for prisoners only. They have their own rules there. Their status comes from the lowest of low called a peon who got no rights at all to the upper classes, the beyond-laws.
On Omega he fights and kills to live and gets a job. With every successful kill he climbs up in social hierarchy. However he feels that he’s not prone to kill and murder. He’s doing this only for self-defense. He’s got suspicions that he’s charged wrongly. He wants to get back to Earth.
A resistance movement Group Two helps him to catch a starship that was due to return to Earth. On earth, he learns that Earth lives in dictatorship, people are not allowed to be creative. It’s considered as a threat to conformity. Robots rule the world. Either you think and act their way otherwise you are sent to Omega with trumped-up charges.
Barrent found a Chief of Secret Conformity Police who suddenly was on his side. He helped him a lot. They sent a message with a starship travelling to Omega. The message contained a call for Group Two to come to Earth and force the conformists out. The morale is that without creativity, thrill of hunt for knowledge, for everything we are doomed to conformism and in future, stagnation.