- Posting this on the /r/Civcraft subreddit was not my first choice, but they kept deleting my posts and downvoting me. So, Civcrafters - enjoy the drama.
- Some background for those of you not aware of the current situation in Solis. SPQR is the name of the official "faction" controlling the city of Solis. Mark_Antony is one of the two Consuls. Consuls (also known as "magistrates") have complete authority in the faction, and together their word is the equivalent of a King. The Senate checks the magistrates with it's own power. The Censors check the Senate. The Pontifex checks the Censor. The Senate checks the Pontifex. It's a lot of controlled power in a effective system that SPQR has been using since it's founding in Civcraft 1.0. Mark_Antony is also a Censor, Senator, and leader of his own House. Ghalen is the other Consul. Shadowcon, Silianat, and Logic_Man are all Senators. I am one of the founders of SPQR, next to Silianat and Mark_Antony. There are several "Great Houses" that hold votes in the "Assembly". The Assembly's purpose is to essentially provide the people a means of accomplishing things without having to go directly to the Senate, thus it's called the "People's Assembly". The changes in questiom by Mark_Antony involve one step in a series of reforms, primarily the revision of the traditional-styled senate.
- It started first when Solis was founded a few months ago. Shadowcon was still busy with real-life stuff, I think Logic Man was still busy with real-life stuff as well, Silianat had his everlasting work schedule, and Mark had only sparse activity between his work schedule and his various vacations. The activity of the Senate was, for the most part, pretty low. None of this was particularly unusual or damning, but somewhere along the line Mark began developing this idea that the upper echelons had been losing their former respect and prestige. Personally, I didn't notice any of that. I was fairly active on Titanav(an alt) back at that point and of course still checking in on the subreddits, but I didn't see any sign of what he spoke of. Suddenly, he got this random determination that Solis had to be armed immediately. For the month of July, he proposed several motions to impose ridiculous taxes (10 emerald blocks per week per vote) on the Houses. First he proposed it to the Senate, and was denied completely. Silianat and I talked to him for hours on that subject and more, advising him and refining his ideas, and in the end we are ignored - as per usual. Since the Senate officially denied him however, he had to take it down a notch...but it was still no where near the practical worth of a political vote in the Assembly. So it gets denied again, and he proposes a lower one - still too costly, it gets denied. On a technical level, it would only take 10 or so minutes of one's time to get the materials needed each week, for each vote, but it really was not worth it - no one valued the Assembly votes that high. So his motions repeatedly got denied. He expected too much of the average Civcrafter, and he wanted to have ridiculous amounts of gear by the time August hit. So, since Silianat and I disagreed with him, and the Senate disagreed with him, he took his motions to the Assembly and was promptly denied.
- This is what sparked a fire under him, causing him to get this ridiculous idea that the Republic was broken, and that everything needed to be reformed. He said that there was tensions between the upper echelons and the average citizens, and there was a large division of opinion and background in the city. He made it sound like the citizens were ready to revolt against the Senate. This made no sense to me at all. I even double checked the older threads on the subreddits. We have many opinionated people, but none that were ready to revolt because the Senate was doing a poor job. I was very confused about this, but Mark failed to elaborate on the matter no matter how much I asked about it. Mark always had a tendency to seemingly produce random, but false, opinions and facts out of thin air, but it was particularly bad now. It was the strangest I've ever seen from Mark, and then the reformations phase hit. His initial plan, he confided, was to manipulate Ghalen into giving him dictatorship and to enforce new reforms that would change SPQR into something that "it needed to be". The very fact that he was going to use dictator and force his way through was enough to make me oppose him, and Silianat and I talked him down - a few more hours of wasted breath. We tried to tell him that it would not work - they would be revoked immediately. Him declaring dictator would of tore the faction apart. Regardless, we ended up warning him that if he went for dictatorship, we would oppose him. Even as we spoke, however, he was acting strange. He even went so far as to wildly claim that he was our puppet politician, which made no sense and had absolutely no basis. Nothing he wanted to do made any sense, and we've had trouble agreeing on anything.
- Although it was his motions that got denied, suddenly it was the Senate that was in the wrong. He called the Senate out for lack of participation and support of his motions. I agreed that we needed to revise our leadership, and advised Mark on how to best go about it. I was ignored. Thus followed his reforms, his attempts at creating a "new Republic". We have, first and foremost, his attempt to redesign of the Senate into the new "People's Assembly". Since 1.0 we've had issues with representation for the people. We've had Houses, Assembilies, Magistrates, tribunes, all sorts of ideas. Personally, I thought the House Assembly worked well. Did it accomplish much as a whole? No. HOWEVER, it fulfilled it's purpose by the many individuals supplying their opinions and ideas. Mark disagrees - I don't know his reasoning, he keeps just repeating the same points about reforms. However, this is one idea I've never seen - making Senators election-based. Not even the Romans did that, and for good reason. Mark broke the tradition of basing ourselves off the ancient Roman republic. Where the Romans elected magistrates, who chose Senators, we now elect Senators and magistrates directly. Now any elected individual through a simple process can have a single vote on a high-tier administrative level. Need I even bring up the potential problems this will bring? All it takes is one fool like comped to show up with his ten friends, and twice as many alts, to screw over everything - and we already have one Consul trying to do that. The Senate is not meant to be an elected assembly, and it's not meant to be used as the People's Assembly. Essentially all he has done is renamed the assemblies. We have the People's Assembly as the Senate, and the Senate as the Patriarch's Assembly.
- The Patriarch's Assembly, or as I like to call it - the Founder's Club, is the system Mark is proposing to essentially make sure the plebeians don't gain too much power. Essentially it's the old Senate with a new name and a membership that suits him and can't be changed by anyone. Why he's trying to change the current system, however, is beyond me. Silianat and I have talked with him at length about this, but as per usual, we are ignored. Frankly, everyone will and should see the assembly for what it is - blatant attempts to hold on to their authority as founders. If I'm going to lead this faction, I'm not going to do it because the law says I'm allowed to. I'm going to do it with the support of the Senate and People. Anything less can only lead to corruption, and that accomplishes nothing for no one. We have no magistrates to check the Patricians, nor can the Senate check the Patricians. What happens when three of the patricians decide to do something stupid? What happens when three of the patricians go inactive? What happens when the Patrician's Assembly becomes corrupt? Keep in mind the membership can not be changed.
- Anyway, although we convinced Mark to stay away from the dictator approach, he continued to set himself on the path of bringing about reforms. Silianat and I tried to turn him away from this path. It wasn't the right way to go about it. It was clear to me - I did not believe the Republic was broken. The only thing broken in this faction are it's leaders. I first saw this a few weeks ago. I saw Mark was cracking up under the mantle of leadership. I say that dramatically, but I legitimately mean it. Running such a large faction puts a lot of pressure on it's leaders, and the only explanation for Mark's sudden and erratic behavior was that he had taken too much pressure and cracked. I don't really believe he's had a mental breakdown or anything, but it's possible to get worn out by even this game of Civcraft. So, seeing this early on, I stepped up to my former position as Consul, hoping that I could start supporting him more directly. The first thing I told him when I stepped up was that "if you don't run for Consul next term, neither will I" in an attempt to make sure he doesn't see me running for Consul and immediately ditch me to take over the mantle. The next day he's announced that he's not running for Consul. I confront him on it and he evidently has no idea what I'm talking about. I show him a copy/paste from our Skype conversation that he even acknowledged at the time. All he had to say was "oh". Of course, as you all know, he still has not run for Consul again, and I have not withdrawn. Mark has stated that "my terms" will be spent in a new Republic, with the "Antonius Reforms" in effect as his legacy. In reality, however, these reforms are just what he considers best - even all of the motions that were denied, and who says that he decides what is best for this faction?
- Less than a week after we convince Mark to stay away from dictator, and Mark reveals that the citizens of Solis, for some reason, have been going to him with complaints about the faction. I don't know who those citizens are, or if they exist, but it has become clear to me that something is very wrong with this faction, and I had every intention of fixing it - legitimately and with the backing of the Senate and People. Mark has been blocked at every political turn, and now he is turning to individuals to manipulate in his favor - and if that fails, dictatorship. I do not understand why he is so dedicated to this path, but I refuse to stand here and take part. Unfortunately, I am not a magistrate, nor a Senator. There is no political power I can exert to put a stop to any of this. The only political title I can claim is the symbolic founder's title - a title I will not be utilizing in Mark's new Republic. I will not take part in this "Founder's Club". I do not support nor will I follow anything established by the Patricians, nor any new Senate that may appear to replace the TRADITIONAL SENATE AND REPUBLIC. The concerns and stability of the faction are foremost in my thoughts, but I will not follow this. I'm not going to have some civil war over this, that would guarantee the faction's death, but I'm done with Mark's bullshit and I'm not going to defend a faction as it crumbles from the inside.
- Roma Victor,
Announcement to the Citizens of Solis
Varkanos Jul 17th, 2013 409 Never
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