by Max Barry

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The Imperium of
Democratic Socialists

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Politics of the Imperium

Basic political system of the Imperium

The Imperium of Leonism is a tricameral democracy with regular free and fair elections on all administrative levels. It is also a federal state, consisting of 58 provinces. These are in turn subdivided into Kreise (districts), which themselves consist of several Gemeinden (communities / councils).

Citizens democratically control the politics of the Imperium on all these administrative levels, although the fundamental laws of the Imperium determine that direct democratic control is the strongest at local level and gets more indirect in the higher levels (provincial / imperial) of government. For example, the administrative leaders of Gemeinden, called Bürgermeister (major), are all elected directly, as are all members of the Kreistag (district parliament) on district level. The Imperator Konsul, who is both Head of State and Head of Government of the Imperium as a whole, is not directly elected by the populace but instead indirectly by the members of all three chambers of parliament.

Two distinct differences between the Imperium and "regular democracies" exist: All adult citizens recieve a rank - akin to a military rank - which determines their standing in society and rise according to one's deeds for society at large. It also determines their order of precedence in many settings. A mandatory military service, without the possibility of conscientious objection, exists, making all able bodied citizens members of the military.

A second oddity of note is the third chamber of parliament, the Konsulrat, which consists of all citizens who have reached one of the four highest ranks (Prokonsul II. Klasse, Prokonsul I. Klasse, Vizekonsul or Imperator Konsul) and serves as an advisory body to the Imperator Konsul and his government, as well as being able to sponsor laws and elect the Imperator Konsul along with the other chambers of parliament.

The three chambers of parliament

There are three houses of parliament:
The Senat is the upper house and represents the provinces through locally elected members. The Senat is the smallest chamber of parliament, as each of the 58 provinces is represented by only two to ten representatives depending on population size. The smallest provinces, such as the South Frisian Islands with under 10 million citizens, get only two representatives, while large provinces such as the Hauptstadtprovinz (capital province) with over nearly 1 billion citizens have ten representatives. This gives the smaller provinces considerable clout in defending their interests, as intentioned by the fathers of the Imperial Primary Law.

The Reichstag is the lower house and is elected in nationwide elections every 5 years. Current electoral laws determine that there should be roughly one member of the Reichstag (usually shortened to MdR) per one million citizens. This makes the Reichstag one of the largest parliaments at currently over 7000 members (during the last election the Imperium had about 7 billion citizens, due to population growth the next Reichstag is expected to be even larger unless a reform of the electoral laws can be agreed before the end of its term).

The Konsulrat consists of all citizens who have reached the rank of Prokonsul II. Klasse or higher, is thus unelected and functions as an advisory to the Imperator Konsul. It may propose laws on its own, but needs agreement from the other two houses to enact them. The Konsulrat is hampered by inactivity of its members, as many honorable citizens who reach the Konsul ranks have no interest in politics and do not take up their seats in the house. Otherwise, the Konsulrat would rival the Reichstag in size.

Primärgesetze - the constitutional laws of the Imperium
The Primärgesetze (primary laws) are the de facto constitution of the Imperium. They can be altered with a 75% supermajority of the Reichstag and the Senat.

Article 1 determines that "nobody may be discriminated [neither positively nor negatively!] due to his skin colour, place of birth, country of birth, sex or other features he or she cannot change on their own.

Article 2 lists various inviolable freedoms, such as the freedom to choose one's place of living or profession, travel throughout the territory of the Imperium, buy or sell wares for an adequate price. It does note however that these freedoms may be withdrawn or restricted as a punishment for criminal acts or due to other Imperial laws. It further specifies that individual freedoms may only be restricted or withdrawn due to an Imperial court of justice decision.

Article 3 is the right to a healthy body. It includes a right to the "best possible" medical treatment and determines that all Imperial citizens have a "high duty" to protect each other's health. It further specifies that no laws may be enacted that allow for someone's health to be damaged with state sanction. The last sentence notes that this does not preclude the death penalty from being instated.

Article 4 lists various rights, including the right to free and fair elections, the right to form groups or organisations, freedom of commerce and notably the right to "at least ten years of education".

Article 5, in contrast, lists various duties of Imperial citizens, such as the duty to serve the common good of the Imperium, to help others who are in danger, to follow the laws of the Imperium and, notably, to serve in the Imperial Armed Forces (or, in an often forgotten subclause, in "other organisations for the common good, such as the Imperial Health Service, Police, Fire Departments, Disaster Relief, Educational services or cultural organisations).

Article 6 provides for the right to freedom of religion, but contains various clauses that limit this right - in line with the secular nature of the Leonist society.

Article 7 contains several paragraphs about education, which is one of the most important topics in Imperial politics.

Article 8 pertains foreign policy. Each citizen is duty bound by it to "represent the Imperium honorably towards foreigners". Section 2 mentions that all foreign policy goals should be attained through diplomacy, while section 3 reserves the "right to war" of the Imperium if diplomatic means fail to achieve foreign policy goals.

Article 9 details the structure of the state, such as the three houses of parliament and how the Imperator Konsul (male) or Kaiserin (female) is elected and dismissed.

Article 10 details how the Imperial Armed Forces are organised, establishes conscription and details some of the long-term goals of the military, such as the defense of Imperial territory, exploration of "new areas, especially [outer] space", education of young citizens, defense against armed enemies of the Imperium inside its borders and, notably, fight unemployment in the Imperium.

Article 11 further details the federal structure of the Imperium.

Article 12 establishes the judicial system of the Imperium with courts on district, provincial and Imperial levels. To take a decision, two (district), three (provincial) or five (imperial) judges must agree at the end of court proceedings.

-- WORK IN PROGRESS --

The Imperium of Leonism

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