Carmanian Oppression

From: Nick Brooke (D&T CAS) (100656.1216@compuserve.com)
Date: Thu 29 Feb 1996 - 13:52:09 EET


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Loren writes:

> In my version of Carmania everybody (Carmanian, Pelandan, Bindler,
> Worlani, etc) is a "citizen" of the Lunar empire...

This could be so. I'm not an expert on recent Carmanian political history, and
my opinion on these subjects is worth less than that of Loren Miller, Paul
Reilly and their ilk who have actually played in Lunar Carmania. My gut feeling
is that since being a Citizen Foreigner isn't as impressive as full citizenship,
it could well be more widespread. "Real" Lunar Citizenship would then be the
rare and wonderful thing in Carmania that it is in Lunar Tarsh and elsewhere in
the Provinces. (I know, frex, that Yolanela of Spol is *not* a full Citizen).

Loren stated four assumptions: I've only got minor quibbles with them.

> 1. Irripi Ontor runs the courts in the provinces, if not in the
> heartlands.

Certainly, there are still some Carmanian courts where Carmanian law is followed
and Carmanian viziers and nobles preside (i.e. the Lunars don't run *all* the
courts in the West Reaches, only the Lunar ones).

Certainly, many of the magistrates presiding over these Lunar courts (where
citizen foreigners' appeals might be heard) have well-stocked larders, are
members of the local hunt, hob-nob with the gentry, etc. For this to be the
case, it doesn't really matter whether the magistrates are from Irrippi Ontor or
elsewhere: I'd suggest, though (given that they're standing in locally for the
Red Emperor), that they're more likely to be from the Red Emperor's cult.

IMHO, the Irrippi Ontor cult (in the Heartlands, at least) has more to do with
education, scholarship, research, indoctrination, propaganda, and central
planning (and, rumour has it, re-education, brainwashing, and the like), than
with the administration of justice -- although stage-managed "show trials" would
fit nicely into their ethos. Like any good Lunar, I'm prepared to be flexible on
this one...

There's no reason why the magistrates shouldn't be both Irrippi Ontor *and*
Moonson initiates, of course.

> 2. Carmanians are willing to bribe to get their way.

They certainly are! They now have a mercantile, money-grubbing nobility,
corrupted by filthy lucre from their ancestors' martial virtue; naturally they
would use bribery. And, just as naturally, Carmanian knights and nobles of the
Old School -- typified by Alehandro and his ilk -- would find this particularly
sordid and debased, or affect to do so...

The Viziers would, of course, be arguing the toss: "Is it worse to offer a
bribe, or to accept one, to pervert the course of Justice? Having chosen to
accept a bribe, is one morally obliged to act as the briber requests?" With all
the associated citing of precedents and scriptures, and so on: worldly folk say
that a Vizier could argue that Black is White, and be believed by his peers.

This is entertainingly similar to the situation I've posited for Hrestoli vs.
Malkioni at the Dawning, where chivalrous Knightly types argued for a
straightforward understanding of Right and Wrong, whereas the more old-fashioned
Wizards fell back on legalistic interpretations of Holy Scripture that satisfied
nobody (except themselves): and this is, of course, where the Carmanians came
from.

> 3. Citizen Foreigners do not have right of appeal to Glamour, only
> to their Satrap.

A quick question of terminology: do you mean that Citizen Foreigners can appeal,
at the very highest, to the Lunar Governor of the West Reaches (this would be my
own assumption), or that this particular buck stops with the local "Counts" etc.
of the four Carmanian regions? I'd like to think the regional Carmanian nobles
(my Satraps, Sirdars, and the like) can be called to account by the Lunar
Governor -- if only in exceptional cases, of course.

> 4. Players are willing to play the oppressive overclass in a land
> with endemic racial and religious discrimination.

Dave Boatright seems to think I do this in real life anyway, so I obviously
don't have a problem with it...

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Nick
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