An Introduction to the Fyros Senate¶
Our reporter snatches a brief chat with the extremely busy new Fyros Senator - Dios
"Congratulations, Senator Dios, for winning the election to the Fyros senate! Now we would be very much interested in some historical and political background to the senate, if you can spare the time?
How long has the senate been in existence, for example?"
The Senate is an old form of political support for the emperor, via the people. The exact year of the founding is unknown, though the old writings that survived the exodus do tell us that the senate was founded to make decisions easier for the emperor.
Back when the land of the Fyros was still big and their honour unbroken, the emperor had to make daily decisions about the wellbeing of the people. The senate was founded to deal with the small day-to-day tasks of ruling a great Empire. Small tasks needed to be solved quickly whereas the bigger ones required wisdom and consideration. Therefore it was that the small tasks were first brought before representatives and ultimately before the scholars. However, the emperor at that time saw that this could not go on forever, on an informal basis and so he gathered the scholars around him and following consultation, founded the senate. After the teething problems were resolved a simple yet effective system was created that was of great benefit for both the people and the emperor.
At the time when the languages of the peoples were still different from another, the senate used to be called "assembly of the three chambers", and the senate is still based on these three chambers today.
"How is the senate structured, and of whom is it composed?"
These three chambers are as follows:
- The first outer chamber is composed of exactly 21 scholars, of which I am one.
- The second, inner chamber is composed of the 13 most wise and experienced scholars from the outer chamber.
- The third chamber is composed of former members of the inner chamber, who are trusted by the emperor.
The outer chamber was tasked with the administration the municipalities. Most of time a scholar from the outer chamber was assigned a town or district to govern. His duties included the tasks of city administration, provision of sanitary services and supplying the people with all governmental services. Members of this chamber were initially elected by the people.
The inner chamber was given the power to raise taxes and run the treasury. Furthermore it is the duty of the inner chamber to ensure sufficient supplies and training for the imperial troops. Members of this chamber were elected by the outer chamber.
The third chamber was entrusted with supervising the actions and decisions of the two other chambers.
In the early days of the senate there were frequent decisions made which were not brought before the emperor for signature. These decisions were often of no benefit for either the people or the emperor and were made directly by scholars on their own account, taking for themselves the emperor's sole right to sign decisions. After this became public, and the scholars who were responsible had departed hurriedly, the third chamber was founded.
At first, the third chamber was composed of members of the military and scholars whom the emperor trusted, though later the members of the military were replaced by elders for unknown reasons. So it evolved that the third chamber included former members of the inner chamber.
In addition to these problems of the outer, and especially the inner chamber, came the fact that the scholars from the outer chamber were elected by the people. In times of unrest, it often was the case that only the wildest and quick-witted were elected. Accordingly, after only seven years of foundation, the system became subject to change .The emperor decided then that the oldest and wisest senators - the members of the inner chamber - should choose which scholars should be elected to the outer chamber. Nevertheless the outer chamber had to supply a list of suitable candidates no shorter than five names.
Additionally, the members of the inner chamber were given the right to vote out a scholar from the outer chamber, if the vote was unanimous. Furthermore, the members of the outer chamber themselves could vote out one of their own; however an absolute majority was required to take this step.
"And how are the common people of Fyros included in the process of making important decisions?"
Well the most striking example of this was the string of events that led to my becoming a Senator. The Inner chamber for the first time in its history had a vote of 5 for each candidate and 3 abstentions, and the situation was deadlocked.
It was the decision of the Third chamber after consultation with the emperor, to revert to the age-old process and in this unique situation let the people of Fyros themselves decide the result. I hope to live up to their expectations and do my duty to the emperor, the senate and the people
Another way the people can make an impact is as follows. Historically, whenever there was the wish for change, this could be brought before a scholar – now called a Senator. The outer chamber would then discuss this request and if it could be of benefit for the public, it was then submitted to the inner chamber. The inner chamber would then decide if the wish was feasible and of benefit for all involved. Should this be the case, a letter would be sent to the emperor, including the names of the people and guilds requesting this change and the opinions of both the outer and inner chamber. The emperor would then make a ruling on the requested change.
The senators of the outer chamber now have the sole right to choose a representative for the affairs of the people, whose duty it is to receive such requests from the common people and to bring these before the outer chamber. Likewise it is his right to decide whether to permit further discussion about the request, making his role a key one in the process of government.
"Thank you very much, Dios, for these detailed explanations. We all would like to wish you success in your work for the benefit of the people of Fyros."