Public Senate Session Discussion

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Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Lucius Aurelius Curio » Sun Jan 28, 2018 6:26 pm

Salvete Cives!

The Senate has been called to order by Praetor L. Livius Seneca with favorable auspices taken by Augur P. Iunius Brutus.

The agenda items have been publish in the following thread:

viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2311

In accordance with our Mos Maiorum, I hereby open this public space for the citizenry to debate, if they so wish, this eighth session of the Senate.

Your participation is valuable and I urge all citizens follow the Senatorial Proceedings at the link below and to speak their minds in this thread on any item they wish!

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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Aulus Iulius Caesar » Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:46 pm

Salvete, I wish to speak my mind on the Imperial cognomina, since I have some stake in that. I believe Augustus itself should be changed, it was a granted title more than a cognomina. But when it comes to Caesar, it was a legitimate cognomina used with the Julii gens. I myself am a Caesar, I've always been a Caesar. If you remove Caesar then you're removing a cognomina because of what it becomes. It no longer carries the same meaning and so I believe it should remain.
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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:42 am

Salvete Quirites!

Currently the Senate is discussing the Lex Curatorium: De Concilio Plebis.
Again they only want to concede our comitia the right to "nominate" the magistrates, while the corporation (Comitia Curiata) would then formally elect them. This is an outrageous insult to the Republic and all citizens and a violation of the Mos Maiorum and our Declaration. Such a procedure that places a corporation with non elected members (lictores) above all democratic institutions is unacceptable. When joining this community we signed a Declaration that states that we try to reconstruct Roman traditions as good as possible from archaeologic evidence, not inventing a totally new code of law that is alien to Roman culture.
We the citizens must not let them get away with this.

I will abstain from all further elections and anything else that has remotely to do with politics in this community and I will neither recognize the magistrates anymore nor pay taxes, if this procedure gets confirmed, and I call all citizens to do likewise.

We do not need to recognize any magistrate that is not elected by us, but by the directors of a corporation that we have not chosen. This community is not a Canadian NGO. We are Romans! We should not be part of this comedy that attempts to look Roman and democratic, while the reality is far more profane. They want it to be a ridiculous online Role Playing Game organized by a Canadian company. Now it becomes clear why NR classified us once as "competing organization". Because this describes exactly what this Roman Internet communities have become: a few companies competing for the Roman online market, a far cry from the "Spiritual Nation" that our ex-Consul L. Curtius Philo Maior had once envisioned.

The corporation is crossing a red line here. And it proves that the current constitution of the Republic cannot work. The corporation must be put back in their place and be completely separated from the Republic.
It is about time that this community is completely reorganized and gets a constitution that is approved by all its members in a fair referendum, not by a self-appointed board of directors.

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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Lucius Aurelius Curio » Tue Jan 30, 2018 1:15 pm

Curio Sal.

As always, Lupus, it's good to hear from you, even if it's mainly only when something about the corporation comes up. I hate to rehash old arguments, but this system was established for a good reason. If you do recall old NR policy, it was a base democratic system. Yes, it was more historically accurate, on this I will concede to you. However, it was also ripe to abuse and eventually wound up tearing them apart from the inside by allowing corrupt leaders to reach the highest positions. As much as it's not historically accurate, the Comitia Curiata stands where it does for a good reason. They guard our assets from corruption, and act as a final safeguard against corrupt leaders that could tear our own Republic to shreds with their own selfish agendas. The Comitia Curiata has the power to remove those who are abusing their authority, for the safety of the RR itself (to avoid another NR situation). Are they elected, no. On this you are correct. However, these are individuals who are chosen by their own records of service, mostly all past elected leaders. I will give you a line by line of their history, for clarification purposes:

P. Iunius Brutus - Founder, Twice elected as Consul, once as Censor. I think it's safe to say he is an asset to such a position.

L. Hostilia Scaura - Founder. She is one of three essential people who breathed this organization into life (P. Iunius Brutus, L. Hostilia Scaura, and L. Curtius Philo). Again, an asset to have given her dedication and time she poured into this organization.

T. Flavius Severus - Patrician (signed the Declaration, same as yourself). Twice elected as Consul, once as Censor. Again, an asset whose poured countless hours into this organization.

L. Livius Seneca - Quaestor and now our current Praetor. He has done everything in his power to make sure we are following laws to the letter, even as a Quaestor. His dedication to our organization has been top notch.

Myself (L. Aurelius Curio) - I have acted as Plebeian Aedile, Consul and now Censor. I have always stood for Plebeian rights, and making sure the people's voice is followed and adhered to. I have also stood on a platform of unity among all Romans, not just those of the Roman Republic.

Now then, you mentioned how we stand above all democratic action. If you would care to name one time we have superceded democratic decision by the people? We have not put any magistrate into power that the people didn't first approve of by majority vote. Yes, last election we had to select two Quaestores based on a three way tie. This was an unfortunate outcome based on no system being in place to break such a tie. We had no legal guidelines to follow regarding it, but this is being remedied by our magistrates this year to avoid such a thing from happening again. Other than this, every magistrate put into place has been one chosen by the PEOPLE, not Lictores.

Moving onto your next point, where you accuse all of us of playing a 'Role Playing Game organized by a Canadian Company'. This one truly chaps my hide, pardon my turn of phrase. What have you done to further real life activity? Early last year, I spoke to you about promoting your area as a province. To that end, I worked to amend the provincial lex, so that you could work on becoming an official province. However, I have heard nothing from you on that. What have we, the Lictores, done to promote offline activity? I will tell you. P. Iunius Brutus and his wife L. Hostilia Scaura, are working on erecting the first Roman Republic altar. This will help generate religious activity and build on the spiritual nation that L. Curtius Philo envisioned. T. Flavius Severus is currently undergoing Augury training so he can not only serve as an Augur for our Republic, but also erect an altar in Russia for the gods, as well as being the main reason why Sarmatia is such an active province in terms of activity. L. Livius Seneca has been working diligently with me on organizing a real world event for ALL Romans, set to take place this upcoming summer here in Minnesota. And I have been working with one of our own citizens of Transborealis Silva to get a temple to Iuppiter built here in Minnesota as well. This will be a long project, but one well worth the effort. I assume your words were spoken of ignorance, not of slander, so I will leave it at this.

Our deeds, not our words, will be remembered more fondly in history. I am confident in where we will stand in this. And much of that will be in part to those who are acting as Lictores currently. Please remember these words next time you seek to accuse others of 'role playing'. Many of us have caused considerable strains on our personal relationships to seek out these goals, and follow them through. Every action comes with a price, but one we have paid willingly to further the idea of a spiritual nation and to build Romanitas worldwide.

Bona Fortuna!

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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:22 pm

To add to all that Curio had said:

Actually, the precedent is traditional that the Comitia Curiata chooses the magistrates. As in ancient times, so is now that the CC by tradition invests with Imperium those nominated by the assemblies. The CC in time was seen basically as a rubberstamp. A formality in the election process. A religious giver of Imperium. But that is so only because they consistently obayed the will of the Assembly. In this sense, the CC is also a rubber stamp today in elections. And that is how it should be. Lupe, amice, you are the towering glory of RR Philosophy and a person very dear to me, but sometimes I think you go a bit overboard regarding the corporation. No one is trying to grab power or cause any trouble. What Seneca is doing is completely inside the bounds of tradition.
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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Lucius Livius Seneca » Tue Jan 30, 2018 5:53 pm

L. Livius v. c. et inl. pr. ur. C. Florio et aliis Quiritibus sal.

As the sponsor of this amendment, I will simply say this: I am proposing a change in nothing but terminology, so that we consistently use the same words to describe the same processes. It makes no sense to have one document speak of "nomination" and another document call it "election". I have proposed that we amend the language of the Lex Curiatorum rather than the bylaws because it is a much more expedient process. If you have hitherto happily participated in our Republic's governing processes, to object now would be irrational because nothing about those processes is actually changing other than how we label them.

As for the critique of the historicity of the current system devised by Brutus, Philo, et al., it is incorrect to claim that the popular assemblies had absolute authority to empower magistrates. I quote from the Elementary Manual of Roman Antiquities:

p. 57 wrote:The granting of Imperium ... according to the constitution, could be conferred upon a magistrate by the Comitia Curiata alone; hence after the election of the consuls by the Comitia Centuriata, a law passed by the Comitia Curiata (Lex Curiata de Imperio), conferring (Imperium) and the right of taking the auspices (Auspicia) was, in practice, held to be essential down to the very close of the republic ...

This is precisely the format we follow: the assemblies pick ("nominate", "elect", whatever you want to call it) some citizens they would like to be magistrates, and the lictors confirm ("appoint", "invest", whatever you want to call it) those chosen by granting them the authority to act as magistrates.

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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:01 pm

Salvete, honorabiles magistrati et alii cives!

The discussion goes completely in the wrong direction. This is not about persons or about past events, it is about the system. Therefore we do not need to talk about the current office holders, of which I know that they are honorable people that I highly respect. We do not need to talk about any particular person and what he has done or not at all.

The Comitia Curiata is no safeguard against corruption and abuse. We already had members (actually one, whose name I do not want to mention though) of the Comitia Curiata who irresponsibly abandoned the office having been admitted after a generous donation and some initial enthusiasm. This person left us without major damage, but any other kind of abuse would easily have been possible, because this person had apparently been a bad choice for the office.
And to refresh the memory about what happened in Nova Roma, it was the NR corporation that enabled Sulla as CFO to take over the organization, Neither Sulla nor Caesar were consuls or other kind of magistrate at that time, when they started the dictatorship. The »executive committee of the NR senate« was a corporate institution.

I stand corrected on the historical accuracy of the Comitia Curiata however. Thank you for the explanation. I had the original assembly of the curiae in mind and the collegium of the lictores, which was something different. Once again I had the opportunity to learn something new.

back to the topic: What makes our Republic as it is at the moment into a Role Playing Game is not the fact that it is online. The Internet is part of today’s society and most real-life communication takes place in the Internet. What makes our Republic a RPG is the fact that nothing of it reflects reality. Just as whatever role a player in World of Warcraft plays is irrelevant for decisions regarding the WoW universe, which is exclusively determined by the decisions of the company Blizzard Entertainment; in the same way whatever is discussed here in the forum is irrelevant for the future of our Republic, which is exclusively determined by the RR non-profit corporation.
The proof is that whatever criticism is made, it is answered by some magistrates who cannot be expected to say anything else, afterwards it is ignored and we continue unwaveringly just as it was decided long before without ever having asked anybody. It is a theater, and everything that we say is meaningless. The predetermined course of our community will never be changed. And if it will, the decisions are made behind the scenes by the cooperation, not by the elected magistrates or the comitia.

I am tired of reading this argument about »Canadian law requires this and that for our legal status«. We do not need to care about Canadian law, if we really want to be a »spiritual nation«. If Canada does not like, how we handle things here, then we move our assets to another country. We as Romans do not depend on Canada.

If we want to be real and not just role playing, then our organization has to reflect reality. It does not matter if this is online or offline. This is not what it is about. For the company it might be important that some activity is taking place somewhere to prove its presence, for our Romanitas BEING Roman is enough. We do not have to do anything, because we do not need to prove anything. Does an American citizen need to do any offline activity in order to be American? Does a Jew or a Kurd or an Assyrian have to do something particular Jewish, Kurdish or Assyrian in the real world in order to belong to the Jewish, Kurdish or Assyrian nation? – No, they are members of their nation by simply breathing. Because their nationality is a fact, which reflects reality and has meaning online as well as offline.
If we are serious about our Romanitas, we have to make it real. Then everything in our community has to represent something real or it should better not exist at all. If we do not fight for the recognition of our Roman names, if we do not give them real weight as proof of ID, then we do not need them. If our magistrates have no function, we do not need them. And if our comitia have no power to make decisions, we do not need them.

If you claim that this community is not a RPG and something real and that the citizens have an actual voice and can make decisions, then we cannot go on with the status quo, ignoring any criticism and simply continuing as already determined before.

I request a referendum of all citizens. We have over 500 members, not just the few people that have answered this thread and hold magistrate offices. I would like to hear the opinion of all citizens. Let us ask them this simple question:
Do you want a Canadian corporation and its bylaws to be above our Republic and Roman traditions or the other way around?
This poll does not need to be done under »in-game-rules« in the Comitia Centuriata or Tributa. It can be a simple poll with one vote for every citizens, equal, fair, and just, because we are all equal in our Romanitas.
Then we will know what our citizens want. And then we can constitute the Republic according to the will of all participants, not just the will of a few. And if the majority approves the current system, then I promise never to bring up this topic again.

But if we change how we stand to our corporation, then it will also change how we stand to the RPR corporation and NR as corporation. It will allow us a new approach to bring all Romans worldwide together independent from the corporation they have signed up with, since we will not be legally obstructed by a conflict of interests anymore. After all we are all Romans, and this does not depend on membership in any organization.

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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:35 pm

We are now in the third year of our founding. I believe it is just to have concerns about the way things are going (even if I in particular am fine with it and think differently from Lupus). I think that if we are a Nation, and I believe we are, it would be good for us to actually debate forms of organizing ourselves better and suggest alternatives to be decided by the People as a whole. I believe it should still pass through the Comitia Centuriata because it is not a game committee, but one that specifically gauges investment. And those who invested more in the Republic should have more of a say than those who have invested less. We are not a Democracy. We are a Republic.

I also do not think the question you asked is accurate amice, it being very biased and uninformative. Let us quantify the assumptions in the question (and what it doesn't answer) :
I) In the question is the assumption that the Canadian corporation and bylaws are in conflict with the tradition and the Republic. If someone says they prefer the bylaws to rule over the traditions, it inherently means they believe these bylaws to conflict with it in some way. That may not be the case.
II) It assumes a dichotomy in which one has to necessarily be superior to the other. It permits no middle grouns.
III) It does not answer what would be the alternative. It does not give any idea of that actually. It doesn't even make clear if the way things are going now is wrong.

So to make such a poll would require more accurate and useful questions that are specific to every aspect of the organization of the Nation and the proposal of alternatives. I agree it should be done and would be a positive thing for us to find agreeance and concord here. We are a Nation so we must act like one and be accountable.
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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Wed Jan 31, 2018 6:41 pm

Salve amice!

Consentio, the Comitia Centuriata is appropriate for a poll. I just thought it would be too complicated and proposed some easier way for a non-binding opinion survey.

It happened more than once that the argument was made in the Senate that we have to be in compliance with Canadian law or the bylaws of the corporation when our leges were discussed. Therefore we can assume, that such a conflict is a possibility. Otherwise it would not be a valid argument.
It is noteworthy that Sulla and Caesar used the same argument all the time in Nova Roma to justify their policy. This was in the issue of senators being members of "competing organizations" and ultimately the justification for the dictatorship to prevent an (under Maine state laws) illegal control of the tribuni plebis over the corporation.
There is no false dichotomy, because we have to decide which of the two has priority in case of a conflict.

The alternative that I am proposing is simply that the corporation should be an institution under the Republic that is in charge of the treasury. Its directors, who should more properly be called "quaestores", should take orders from the Republic and its institutions (higher magistrates, Senate, and comitia) and be subordinate to them, not having the last word.
It is the same way as the Catholic Church is organized. The Church has non-profit corporations in many countries, but the Pontifex Maximus or the Curia do not take orders from them. They make the decisions and accordingly they set up a corporation in a particular country or move money from one to another.
If Canadian law does not allow us to do what we want to do, we simply move the assets to another corporation that fits our needs better. It would be a tool of our Republic and not, as it is now, the Republic being a Roman disguise for the corporation.
There are for example restrictions regarding what a non-profit can do. These restrictions should not apply to our Republic. If we need to make profit, then we must have the option to set up an additional commercial corporation under the Republic.
A corporation should also not legally hinder our future agreements with RPR or Nova Roma.

Therefore the question is clear. There are two options:
  1. We remain a corporation constituted under Canadian law with the institutions of the Republic having to comply with the corporate bylaws.
  2. We become an international community, which maintains a corporation in Canada for a certain purpose.
This is an essential question. It is about what we are. Are we a corporation or are we a "spiritual nation" with a corporation?

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Re: Public Senate Session Discussion

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:36 pm

I see. Yes, that is a valid discussion. I do not believe it should be handled by a yearly elected officer, because let's be honest, the Quaestor is the FIRST position a person enters in our Republic and I would never trust the keys to our assets to such a person. So the Comitia Curiata handling these assets is still the best option. But there is definitely merit to consider the RR legislation to be seperate to the RR Corporation. I imagine you count as "assets" the Forum and the website, yes?

Know that if this is done, though, there would be no legal protection against the Corporation simply seizing all the property and using it for something else. Contrary to the Vatican, we are not a Sovereign State so we can't simply exist inside an independent legal framework. What would be your solution to this?
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