Government, Law and Politics

The government of the Empire is divided into spiritual, military, and civil realms. The High Priest, always the oldest active Makoo, heads the Church, the spiritual arm of the government. The Church tends to the well-being of the Eldest Makoo, and the spiritual needs of all citizens, and administers the Religious Law. This governs all crimes that pollute the atmosphere of the Palace by fostering negative, violent emotions, either in the perpetrator or the victim. (NOTE: Disbelief or alternate religions are not crimes of themselves. The punishment for spiritual crime is banishment. For less serious crimes, it is temporary banishment to the border of the city, with counseling. More serious crimes are punished by banishment and military conscription.) Each Park area has a Dean, who heads the local church and reports directly to the High Priest.

The military wing is headed by the Warlord. In principle, its main powers lie outside the Palace, where it can commandeer property and conscript individuals for tasks for the collective good. Inside the Palace, these powers are curtailed. The military often assists in the administration of the spiritual law by conscripting banished citizens for unpleasant duties. The military is immune from Civil Law, and has its own system of courts. It is hierarchical, and almost completely dominated by Garus.

The Civil Government is responsible for ensuring quality of life for citizens. It collects taxes and regulates commerce, tends to the infrastructure, and passes legislation for the common welfare. It is also responsible for maintaining records and promoting culture, science, and trade. The Archon, the head of the Civil Government, is traditionally a Dragon. However, the bureaucrats, accountants, and scribes are overwhelmingly Varagh. The civil law has wide jurisdiction, but punishment is restricted to fines and community service. Repeated resistance to civil authority is a spiritual offense.

In addition, each species is entitled to maintain a body to preserve its indigenous customs and govern family and domestic issues. Some species, like the Garu, are organized and strict in enforcement. Others are informal and tolerant, like Unicorns.

Since the fall of the Science Tower, three political factions have emerged, each associated with a branch of government. The Inward Path faction believes that progress depends on closer harmony between the day-to-day life of the Empire and the dream of the Saints. They preach a return to tradition and a rich spiritual life. The Outward Path believes that the security of the Empire lies in restoring the political and economic dominance over lost territory. The Phoenix faction, associated with the Archon, strives to regain lost technology and knowledge through exploration and experiment. It ultimately hopes to solve the mystery of the Science Tower and cleanse it of corruption.
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