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Re: The Principalities Debate, was: The Evil P-word
Thank you. I think this is an excellent post. Would you please e-mail
me privately and tell me if I can use parts of it in the future when we
get to each subject?
Until then, I'll just answer what I think is currently applicable, and
save the rest for latter.
> I would like to proffer my personal opinions about why I am
> highly suspicious of the Pro-Principality movement and why I
> am currently opposed to any Principalities forming anywhere
> in Atlantia.
Well, I'd never oppose a principality in another part of Atlantia, I
don't think that is my right.
> First, of all I am opposed to bureaucracy. I dislike rules
> for rules sake. I think that organizations should run with
> the minimum of rules and bureaucracy so that people can get
> down to the business at hand. I do not define the business
> at hand as being an officer in an organization whether a
> great officer, a principality officer, a local officer or a
> figure head officer (barons, kings, princes).
Well, as a fellow seneschal, I have to agree that being an officer is not
business, it just defines what business I'm supposed to do. Creating
principalities would reduce the authority of the kingdom bureaucracy, and
thus reduce bureaucractic impact on our game.
> I feel that the goals of the SCA in Atlantia should be:
> 1) To promote an enjoyable medieval-like atmosphere for
> 2) To promote the study of medieval pursuits.
> 3) To throw events with tourneys, feasts, crafts and
> 4) To recognize achievement in the areas of service,
> fighting and the arts/sciences.
> In the interests of being fair, I assume that one of the
> Pro-Principality movements motives is number 1. However, I
> think that a principality will interfere with 3, reduce
> exchange of information about 2 and actually make 4 more
> difficult, and ultimately fail to achieve goal 1. [I
> concede that the reason many join is for the purpose of
> having fun (i.e., hobbies are leisure activities pursued for
Well, actually I sort of want to do all four. Two might not be promoted
by a principality, but I think the rest are.
> I feel that what originally sparked the Pro-P movement, the
> straw that broke the camel's back, etc. was Duke Anton's and
> Duchess Luned's insistence that Earl Laighre, Sir Bryan and
> Sir Grethferth's (excuse my bad spelling - just color me
> medieval) swear fealty or suffer banishment. In addition,
> these same people were up in arms over Muirgen's signing the
> royalty pact at the event in Arizona without personally
> consulting them (although she, Kane, Anton and Luned did
> speak with over 300 Atlantian citizens in the two weeks
> before the event). This is why I am suspicious of the Pro-P
> movement. I think a personal dislike of Anton and his
> cohorts is what is pushing this movement along.
Well, it's not pushing me. I'm sorry you're suspicious of the motives of
the Pro-P movement. Personally, when it comes to Duchess Yseabeau and
Earl Leaghaire, I try to practice the courtesy of accepting what they say
are their motives, and not try to asscribe secret reasons to their actions.
> However, a principality will not rid northern Atlantians of
> these folks. They will still be Kings and Great Officers.
> They will still be Peers affecting their orders.
True, principalities would only be insulation, not elimination.
> addition, the North is not full of saints. There are
> others living in the North who are willing to ride rough
> shod over others in order to see that what they consider to
> be right and proper is done. A principality does not
> guarantee fun.
Lack of principalities doesn't guarantee fun either. I am sorry, but I
can't provide a guarentee.
> I think what it does guarantee is the following:
> 1) More courts. Court is boring. Pomp and circumstance
> exists in court sometimes. However, court is also a time
> when people having a good time are shushed so that they can
> watch other people who may or may not be having fun and who
> may or may not be hearable.
1.) Disagree, 2.) you can always leave the hall rather then compete with
> 2) More royalty. Great. More opportunities for people to
> think that they have discovered a little power and run rough
> shod over others. More autocrat time and event time being
> planned around these people.
Bad royalty is bad royalty, good royalty is good royalty, I've seen both.
> 3) More offices to be filled. Atlantia has some difficulty
> filling the offices it has now. Many of the baronies and
> shires have difficulty filling the offices that they have.
> More offices. More bureaucracy. More reports. More paper.
> More chances for people to fill artificially important.
Definately to be discussed latter. I'll have to save up for a response.
> 4) Hard feelings. People will resent these officers,
> royalty and principality folks.
I think that's a very negative image. Do you resent the King and Queen?
> Those not in a principality
> will feel excluded. Those who fought against a principality
> will feel disaffected.
Lady Thalia, you are saying that if I achieve the principality, you will
feel bad. But if I give up, don't I justly deserve to feel disaffected?
If I were to give up, and blame you or anyone else, I think that would be
bad sportsmenship on my part. That is not my concept of chivalrous
behavior, so I am not going to give up. This arguement touches me not.
> 5) More reserved dates on the calendar. There will be less
> opportunities for individual group events. On top of the 1
> date a month going to Kingdom level events. There will be
> at least 4 more dates tied up in Coronet tourneys and
> Coronet coronations. Just what the North needs -- less
> dates on the calendar available. (I don't think so.)
Two actually, but I'll explain later.
> 6) Coronet Tourneys. Another opportunity for people to
> complain about fighters individual honor, chivalry,
> rhinohideness and sportsmanship.
Another opportunity for fighters to shine. Another opportunity serve
one's lord (or lady) by making them consort. Another opportunity for
fun. I don't accept this pessimistic assumption. Sorry.
> 7) Less Travel. Denise comments that the four to five hour
> drive to North Carolina is too much already. She welcomes
> the idea of a principality because it would cut down on her
> feeling obliged to go to any of these distant events.
> Although officially principalities do not lessen our
> invitations to those events outside the principality, they
> do lessen our enthusiasm for doing so.
Well, people are not obliged to move all over the Kingdom anyway.
Regionality already exists, and effects travel patterns. The only way to
combat it is to encourage carpooling to far away events and to offer
crash space to your own.
> > 8) More difficulty in getting peers. The King and Queen
> will still be giving awards. The peers will still be all
> the peers of Atlantia, not just the peers of the
> Principality(ies). Peers will be (and are) reluctant to
> respond to pollings for people that they have never met. In
> a place where people travel less, people will meet less
Is there difficulty in getting peers now? Can you show that is a
problem? Would any of the Royal Peers of your household agree? (Sorry,
folks, that's really an unfair question, 'cause I think I know the
> > Other potential problems are the following:
> 1) As the principality borders become more of a barrier to
> travel, they will also become more of a barrier to
> communication. This may reduce the sharing of knowledge and
> research as it relates to medieval studies.
Deserves discussion, I'll have to add that to the list.
> 2) Old Castles will be Princes of a new northern
> Principality into the next millennium (I have polled many
> of them and found them willing to fight in a coronet tourney
> if a Principality did come into existence).
Well, in the four years I've been in the SCA, it's been one Oldcastle
king, two Combined. Not exactly overwhealming odds. I am confident that
the coronets will move around in the various households, and the
Oldcastles, as Earl Dafydd points out, are not a monolithic block.
> These are many if not all of the reasons I am leery of a
Thank you again, Lady Thalia.
Committee for Fun Principalities