Clyntahn’s facial muscles tightened ever so slightly, but he declined to rise to Trynair’s verbal bait — if that was what it was — and simply nodded.

“Well, Cayleb and Sharleyan appear to have decided how they intend to respond to such incidents in the future. They sent twenty or thirty of their galleons into Ferayd Sound, they pounded the defensive batteries into rubble — then blew them up, after they surrendered — and burned every structure within two miles of the Ferayd waterfront.”
Anger fumed up in Clyntahn’s own eyes as Trynair listed the catalog of Charisian reprisals. He started to open his mouth, but Trynair cut him off with a quick, sharp wave of his hand.
“I’m not quite done yet, Zhaspahr.” This time the Chancellor’s voice was icy, not fiery hot, and his eyes bored into Clyntahn’s. “Despite the fact that they burned down most of the city, the Charisians were extremely careful to inflict as few Delferahkan casualties as possible. They even allowed the civilian population of Ferayd to remove their portable valuables from homes inside the area they intended to burn. Not exactly the response one would have anticipated out of heretics and blasphemers after Delferahkan troops massacred their fellow heretics and blasphemers, wouldn’t you say?”
Clyntahn’s jaw muscles clenched, but he said nothing, and Trynair’s nostrils flared.
“I thought it showed remarkable restraint on their part, actually,” the Chancellor continued. “Of course, the reason for it was that they fully intended to punish those actually responsible for the deaths. Which is why, Zhaspahr, Admiral Rock Point of the Imperial Charisian Navy had sixteen — sixteen, Zhaspahr — consecrated priests of Mother Church hanged.”
Clyntahn’s eyes flew wide. Despite Trynair’s obvious anger, despite his realization that the contents of the semaphore message must be shocking, he’d never anticipated that! For several seconds, he could only sit, staring at Trynair. Then he he shook himself and started to shove up out of his chair, his jowly face going dark with fury.
“Those bastards! Those goddamned, murderous –!”
“I’m not finished yet, Zhaspahr!” Trynair’s voice cracked like a musket shot, and the white-hot fury in his eyes stunned Clyntahn. No one looked at the Grand Inquisitor that way — no one!
“What?” he made himself bite out the single word, and Trynair’s lips twisted.
“Every one of those priests,” he said, and his voice was deadly now, each word precisely uttered, cut off as if with a knife, “was a member of the Order of Schueler. In fact, by an odd turn of chance, they were all servants of the Office of Inquisition.” He watched Clyntahn’s expression turning even darker, and there was something almost like . . . satisfaction mixed with the anger in his eyes. “And the reason they were hanged, Zhaspahr — the reason that a Charisian admiral executed sixteen consecrated priests of Mother Church as if they were common felons — is that the massacre of Charisians in Ferayd may have been carried out by Delferahkan troops, but it wasn’t at Delferahkan orders. It was carried out, as I feel sure you knew very well, under the de facto command of Father Styvyn Graivyr, Bishop Ernyst’s intendant, and fifteen other members of the Order of Schueler.”
Clyntahn had opened his mouth once more. Now he paused, and Trynair glared at him.
“You lied to us, Zhaspahr. Lied to all of us.”
There was no question in Clyntahn’s mind who the “us” Trynair referred to might be. After all, all of the members of the Group of Four had . . . creatively reconstructed certain events for the rest of the vicarate.
“And what makes you immediately jump to that conclusion?” he demanded, instead of denying the charge outright. “Are you that prepared to to take the word of schismatic heretics? It never occurred to you that they might have every motive in the world to lie about what happened and blame it on Mother Church in order to justify their own murderous actions?”
“Of course the possibility occurred to me. Unfortunately, they sent King Zhames certain . . . documentary evidence. I’m sure there were already copies of most of it in your files, Zhaspahr.”
“What do you mean?” A thin note of caution had crept into Clyntahn’s voice, and Trynair’s lips tightened.
“You know perfectly well what I mean! They captured Graivyr’s files, Zhaspahr! The originals of the reports he and his fellow Inquisitors sent to you, detailing the role they played. In fact, I was quite astonished at how openly and honestly Graivyr admitted in his correspondence with you that the first shot was fired by one of the Delferahkans, not by the Charisians. Or the fact that as soon as the first shot was fired, his handpicked Schuelerites immediately took command of the detachments to which they were assigned and ordered — ordered, Zhaspahr — the massacre of Charisian women and children! My God, man! The idiot boasted about it, and you knew he had, and you never warned us!”
“He didn’t ‘boast’ about it!” Clyntahn snapped back.
“Oh, yes, he did!” Trynair retorted. “I’ve read the reports now, Zhaspahr. He was proud of what he did!”
“Of course he was!” Clyntahn’s eyes flared with contempt. “They were heretics, Zahmsyn. Heretics, you understand? They were God’s own enemies, and they deserved exactly what they got!”
“Some of them were only eight years old, Zhaspahr!” For the first time in Clyntahn’s memory, someone leaned across a desk and shouted at him. “How in Shan-wei’s name are you going to convince anyone with a working brain that an eight-year-old child was a heretic? Don’t be insane!”
“They were the children of heretics,” Clyntahn grated. “Their parents were responsible for putting them in that position, not me! If you want to blame someone for their blood, blame Cayleb and Staynair!”
“The Charisians are going to publish these reports, Zhaspahr. Do you understand what that means? They are going to publish the documents, the very words in which Graivyr and his . . . his accomplices wrote down, for the record, in their own words, exactly what the Charisians accused them of doing!” Trynair glared at his colleague. “I can’t think of a more effective piece of propaganda we could have handed them if we’ve tried!”
“And I say let them publish!” Clyntahn snapped back. “I’ve already got confessions out of those bastards, too, some of them!”
“Oh?” Trynair’s eyes were suddenly much colder. “Would those be the confessions Rayno tortured out of the Charisian prisoners you had secretly transferred to Zion without mentioning it to the rest of us?”
Clyntahn twitched, and the Chancellor shook his head, his expression disgusted.
“I know you’re the Grand Inquisitor, Zhaspahr. I know you have agents everywhere, more than I could possibly have. But don’t make the mistake of thinking that I’m stupid, or that I don’t have agents of my own. Of course I knew about your orders to Rayno!”
“Then if you disagreed with what I was doing, you should have said so at the time!” Even Clyntahn seemed to realize his retort sounded remarkably lame, and Trynair snorted.
“I’m not the Grand Inquisitor,” he pointed out. “As far as I was concerned, if you could get confessions out of some of them, it might at least have ameliorated the disaster I was already afraid Ferayd could be turning into. Of course, not even I had any reason to suspect the full magnitude of the catastrophe you and Graivyr were busy cooking up for us, did I?”

About Eric Flint

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32 Responses to BY HERESIES DISTRESSED — snippet 25

  1. E says:

    For a minute there I almost had hope for Trynair as a human being. But his last line here is about as posturing and political as it gets.

    I’m wondering when the Church found out about Sharleyan and Cayleb. Has to have been before Ferayd, but we may have missed something good in not seeing the Church’s initial reaction.

    Clyntahn is certainly going to be on his toes from now on, so I’m wondering if he’ll have Trynair killed soon.

  2. Mike says:

    We’re discouraged from talking about contemporary political issues in these comments, IIRC. Too bad. There are some that seem entirely appropriate to this discussion.

  3. Alistair says:

    Well we now know what happened or what is happening to the charisins

  4. alejo says:

    Such a lovely roasting. I wonder if Clyntahn gets removed.I will now turn the floor over to those inclined to cogitate, extrapolate, pontificate, speculate, deduce, predict, dissect, and concoct what will happen next and why. I … shall now get myself a beer.

  5. lockswriter says:

    If Trynair were planning to get rid of Clyntahn, I would think he would do so as quietly as possible, not broadcasting his anger like this.

    On the other hand, I wouldn’t put it past Clyntahn to have Trynair taken out and try to blame it on Charis.

  6. Alan says:

    Small point. ‘vicarate’ retunrs 7,410 google results with the notation ‘Did you mean “vicariate”. ‘vicariate’ returns 125,000 google results without any ‘did you mean’.

    The first google result for ‘vicariate’ is a Wikipedia entry for the Apostolic Vicariate of the Catholic church. The fourth google result is to the Catholic Encyclopaedia entry Vicariate Apostolic.

    There is also ‘vicarage’ but that is the residence of a vicar. The word derives from Latin vicarius. Similar words give us forms such as ‘secretariat’ from secretarius. I think the Is have it.

  7. Greg says:

    Three of the four members of the Gang of Four are going to be righteously pissed at Clinton / Clyntahn. If he tries to have one or more of them killed, he’ll be dead shortly thereafter. Either by the efforts of the other Gangsters, or by the efforts of Samuel Wilson (don’t forget The Circle).

    There’s no way Clinton can suppress this news. Which means that no one in the Church hierarchy would believe the Charisans had killed Trynair.

  8. RobertHuntingdon says:

    My question atm… is there more to this scene to come? Is this just an isolated roasting or are we going to see some more of the Go4 attempting to “tread water” a bit? Because if it’s an isolated roasting it was an enjoyable scene but doesn’t do much for actually advancing the story. So I figure it won’t be, but as usual with these snippets you spend the next 48 hours going “OK, but what happens NEXT?”

    On the assumption that we get to see some more desperate attempts to stay afloat from the drowning men on the Go4, I’m trying to guess what happens. I don’t think Trynair or Clyntahn will be disappearing just yet. I suspect it would be tempting to try (for BOTH of them) but they both still need each other, and no matter how pissed off they may be I’m pretty sure they both know it. As evil as Clyntahn is he’s not stupid, and no matter how much of an unprincipled political bastard Trynair is he isn’t stupid either. So I don’t think we’ll see daggers drawn just yet.

    Barring that, what else could happen? Trynair is obviously pissed and a half, and I think he’s worried too. He figured that the tortured confessions could help smooth things over before, but now apparently he doesn’t think so. This leads to a couple of options that I see. One is that Trynair orders Clyntahn to go on ahead and execute all the prisoners now (before Charis can publish) so they can get their side out first. Two is that they decide they have to try to push hard for the Holy War declaration with the confessions they have so far but they run into a slight ‘circular’ snag. After all, we know that the Wylsyns have some really good intelligence on things as well. If they have gotten their paws on a copy of this dispatch I think we’re about to see all hell break loose. And regardless of who wins it will be some interesting reading I bet…


  9. E says:

    With news like this, I imagine the Circle will be more agressive in sounding out members of the Council of Vicars. They might even rush a bit in order to stop a Holy War declaration and forstall the total war scenario that would occur. Charis already is in total-war footing, but mostly because they don’t have the population or extended allies to maintain a peacetime footing on their industries and match the numbers of the Mainlanders.

    From what I understand, the Church is run from a “congress” in the Council of Vicars with Trynair as their figurehead. The Group of Four represents its own form of executive branch and the Order of Scheuler basically won over the right to be the judicial branch as far as interpreting the Writ goes in their ages past conflict with the Order of Bedard. If the Church wanted to salvage itself to the fullest extent, it would sacrifice the Order of Scheuler as a scapegoat and severely reduce their power. The prisoners who were taken at Ferayd would probably have to be executed or permanently held and a public announcement of an ‘internal restructuring and investigation’ of the Order of Scheuler be made. Unfortunately, prosecuting a war against Charis under this scenario would be too damaging to sustain for its current reasons.

    The middle-ground solution is the execution or permanent detainment of Charisian prisoners and the move to outright holy war, hoping that the results would generate its own reasons and leave Charis’s actions and discoveries at Ferayd forgotten.

    The best option for the Church to keep its war and enflame it would actually be to stage a “counter-massacre” at some obscure location, blame the Charisians and move on to outright Holy War, hoping that Ferayd would be forgotten and Charis could be crushed in a sufficiently short time period. All they’d need are fresh corpses and cannons and a location near-enough to Charis to be relevant but not easily investigated. If Clyntahn sent such orders to the Order of Scheuler in Tarot, they could probably pull it off if they could keep people from investigating why they need every corpse in several morgues, cannons, and building materials to boot.

    Still, I gather thus far that the Church relies to little on public relations when it comes to waging war so I don’t think this scenario will play out. All this propaganda that is worried about by the Church thus far is the blunt-instrument of shifting public opinion. The subtle things that the Church could do from the pulpit would be things like ensenuate that any local murders may have been done by Charisian persons, play up the greed of Charisians, and blame Charis for the poverty of certain places (which for many coastal regions will be rather true but indirect seeing as it’s the Church that was going to slaughter Charis anyways).

    If anything, the unlikeliness of subtle maneuvers is probably inherent to the things that the G4 do. They don’t involve themselves in details like the better capability of galleons over galleys, they just say “Make War” and issue out the big lies that are to be believed. Part of it has to be the Proscriptions, because they for the most part are focused on conquering with what they have over what they could upgrade, but another part of it is probably just sheer lack of experience leading in time of war. In this way, the secular rulers of Safehold are its specialists as far as war goes, and the Church doesn’t have the right structure or advisors on hand with its senior leadership to manage this war effectively or in great detail. It is likely that a more workable structure will emerge over time, but even then it will be grinding against the defenses of the Empire of Charis which has a third of the planet and better weapons and experience using them. One of the big problems for Charis is that essentially they face 80% of the planet’s population and resources, but what is a saving grace for Charis is that the seas of Safehold are essentially their own Thermopylae in that the majority of forces that those populations maintain can’t be used effectively because of the physical challenges of seatravel and the lack of culture that addresses those challenges. They could copy Charis’ galleons down to the last detail and lose because the Mainlanders have always seen armies as power (wielded and displayed against each other).

  10. E says:

    As to whether or not there is more of this to come, I’d say yes because for Trynair to not force a decision on Clyntahn at this point would be suicide in terms of power, if not life. He’s played part of his hand and if he walks away having done nothing to direct Clyntahn than Clyntahn might take it as an overall sign of weakness from Trynair. Also, Weber seems to like ending scenes like this on decisions or speculations so we should see one or the other.

  11. Eagledes says:

    “For the first time in Clyntahn’s memory, someone leaned across a desk and shouted at him”

    Ooooh! what a lovely line! Looks like it’s finally coming home to him that Trynair is more than a little pissed at him and is probably so angry that he doesn’t care about who or what Clyntahn is.

    Actually, I’ve been meaning to mention this before – I’ve been wondering why Merlin hasn’t advised Cayleb to declare the Inquisition a criminal organisation. Same as the SS was at the end of WWII. Not the Order of Schueler which could lead to problems with, for instance Father Paytr, but the inquisition itself. But, on the other hand, DW might be saving that for if (when) a Holy War is declared.

    It does lead to a few interesting speculations, though, doesn’t it?


  12. Peter Z says:

    Every G4 decision to attack Charis started with Clyntahn. Trynair has just drawn the line backwards from that conclusion by one step. Clyntahn lied about his overzelous agents actions in the Ferayd massacre. Did he seek that outcome and lie to cover up or was the subordinate simply incompetent? Erik Dynnys’ trial was based on another Clyntahn agent who was perhaps also overzelous or directed to seek that outcome. The Knights of the Temple Lands acted on that ‘evidence’. Clyntahn himself proposed the casual attack of Charis. Were these events driven by a man who abused his power or a vicar simply doing his duty as he saw best? In either case Clyntahn looks to be taking the blame for this Charisian catastrophy either through his incompetence or malicious intent.

    Trynair and Duchairn will be sharp enough to see the advantages of blaming everything on Clyntahn. Trynair will do so to save his politcal posterior and Duchairn to clense his Church of corruption. The only questions I have are whether Clyntahn go quietly into his goodnight and whom will he drag along when the darkness comes?


  13. E says:

    @11 Charis has to be cautious because unlike the SS, the Order of Scheuler is a religiously sanctioned organization, which means that at some level they have a place in the hearts and minds of the people. They need to let the OS build up enough of a rap sheet like the SS to be sanctioned as currently corrupt and abusive so as to not upset people of the historic sanctions to the role that the OS has played.

  14. Adam says:

    The Wylsyns do indeed have a copy of the evidence that the inquisition started the massacre, at least the transmitted semaphore message of it. That was shown somewhere in the second book in the meeting of the vicarate that wants to pull down the power of four. What I wonder is if they will act on this info now that it is coming from an outside source other that them and add all their other info to try to take down the power of four. What I gather will happen is that Duchairn in the group of four will be recruited and they will act on this info while trying to preserve the church from falling apart other that the church of Charis. I do not think they will succeed and in that attempt, Clyntahn will label them all heretics and use that to prove how the corruption of Charis has spread to force through a holy war and name himself supreme dictator over all the church for “duration” of the crisis. I expect that all this evidence to have Sidemark to refuse the church’s authority and that will embolden smaller weaker countries to join them as well and unite with the Empire of Charis to stand up against the corruption of the church.

  15. AL says:

    Cayleb and Sharleyan? When did the church learn about the marriage?

  16. robert says:

    We should not forget that Merlin has not been able to penetrate the interior of the Temple, nor get close to the weapon in orbit, which is probably controlled from somewhere in the Temple. As a last resort the bad guys still have the power to demolish an enemy, assuming that knowledge of how to use the weapon has not been lost.
    Things could get nastier.

  17. E says:

    @15 There were a couple of lines dedicated to the effect of “it’s only a matter of time until Chisholm joins Charis” in BSRA but it isn’t nice of Weber to drop their having found out about the Empire without even a slight bit of frustration over the coalition forming in the first place.

  18. JN says:

    A move to Holy War is already hamstrung by the proof of deception. The Go4 can spin the reports, but their own words carry more weight against them. Abmission against interest is always the strongest evidence.

    This scene has valid plot motives as well. It frames the internal dynamics of the G04, of course. It also foreshadows the coming outcry from Council, while giving a foreshadow of the official response.

    On another level, this is almost exactly the situation DW wrote in the Honorverse, when Honor escapes with Admiral Parnell. I would guess further that, at some still distant point, Traynor is removed, and Clyntyn is left to become effectively a Group of One.


  19. Wyrm says:

    @1, @15, @17

    At the end of BSRA, at the start of the attack on Ferayd, the forces of Delferahk already have heard rumors of the Empire.
    p 473 (Fhairly) He didn’t recognise the standard they flew, but from the colors, it had to be the flag of the new “Charisian Empire” he’d been hearing rumors about
    p481 (Zhonair) and what had to be the new Charisian Empire’s flag – the silver and blue checkerboard of the House of Tayt quartered with the black of Charis and the golden kraken of the House of Ahrmahk

    These are the first “mainland” references to the Empire (which I assume implies the marriage), and are described as “rumors” prior to the battle.

    Trynair has just received the after-battle report from King Zhames, so this is the first opportunity for the news of the marriage/empirte to have reached Zion! I suspect that Friday’s snippet will contain more of the after-battle report, and Trynair will tell Clyntahn about the marriage and the empire.

    Will Clyntahn burst a blood vessel?

  20. E says:

    For the Church to not declare Holy War would be to give up its moral high-ground officially. Acting on this, if Charis sets the fore with a “social contract” dictating what the Church of Charis can and can’t do, sanctioned under Staynair, then other nations will probably try to follow suit and outline the limits of Church control in their own states.

    I’ve been thinking about the government systems on Safehold, and apart from Chisholm, no documentation has been fleshed out detailing the systems of social contracts that exist in different nations and their context under Church hegemony. Perhaps this is to keep things as “shocking” in the event that the Church is contractually restricted in Charis and possibly elsewhere. Personally I find the current process to be proceeding along this track:

    Charis targets Group of Four as Church Leadership. (Propaganda war)
    > Shifts focus to management of Church over doctrine and orthodoxy.

    Charis targets Order of Scheuler as massacre instigators and zealots. (Propaganda/Physical war)
    > Allows Church a scapegoat through Clyntahn.
    > Gets rid of most fundamental proponents of orthodoxy and teh Proscriptions.


    Charis sets social contracts with the remaining orders under hte body of the Church of Charis.
    > Encourages the same elsewhere.
    > Significant increase in secular power leads the Church to hand rulers more power in exchange for support.
    > Most likely initial outcome will be Church sanction of current bloodlines to an indefinitely permanent level.

    Given that ‘if’, the footing of the Church as far as the schism war will probably be very important in determining the extent to which their secular rulers provide loyalty in exchange for power.

    Holy War or no, there is a lot of room for Weber to end up not re-writing another Honor Harrington novel and the depth he gives to whatever solution the Church reaches soon can make or break that distinction.

  21. E says:

    @19 That would certainly resolve things in an ironic and fitting manner to his diet.

  22. E says:

    Things I realize Safehold lacks or has not had written in so far:

    Any form of individualistic Warrior Culture. (Bushido, etc)
    Any significant form of Organized Crime Syndication. (Cosa Nostra, Triads, Yakuza, Misc. Gangs, etc)
    The representation of corporations as ‘persons.’ (Entification serves to make individual profit without individual responsibility; ironically done so under the 14th Amendment in U.S. history)
    Monks. (The non-OCD kind)

    Things that must exist but haven’t been fleshed out:
    Sports (apart from water rugby).
    Whatever sword-and-shield culture exists for warriors.
    Secular histories other than Charis, Chisholm, Emerald and Margaret’s Land.

  23. KenJ says:

    don’t forget baseball

  24. E says:

    They’ve got that.

  25. Peter Z says:

    E, St Zerneou is a monastary. That means it is inhabited by monks seeking solitude to study.

    Organized crime can only survive if it is tolerated. Without a set of laws which only slaps the hands of organized criminals and a society which accepts it as inevitible, organized crime cannot exist. The risk reward calculation would direct the shapers cookies away from such enterprises. I’ld wager that outside of corruption by the ruling class there isn’t any organized crime as we understand it now. As for gangs on their trip to St Zherneou Merlin and Maikel navigate some tough streets which imply street gangs.

    Charis as an organized sports league and by Father Payter’s response to the Dragons (or Krakens I forget which), such a league is rather common in other nations.

    As for superstitions, what pray tell is the myth about Seijins but superstition.

    I do recall wine being mentioned (leading to the strike against Delfahrak there was a scene in a tavern with people drinking beer), but suspect that Church doctrine on dietary habits would have curbed the abuse of alchohol.

    Education was still done through apprenticeships, so is rather specialized. Housmyn as apprenticed as an Ironworker. The only systematic education being done, I suspect, is through the Royal College. I wouldn’t be surprised if DW begins having the Housmyn Industries offer schooling as a perk to his employees. Without either the Church or the Crown providing education, some sharp cookie will begin filling that demand. Workers would gladly pay for the support of a school system and would provide Housmyn with an extended apprenticeship program when the children are too young to work for him. As the demands of industry grow more complex, education becomes more valuable.

    As for specialized cultural phenomena, like warrior cultures, how would they come about? The template for safehold was intensely rigid and universally adopted to boot. How would these cultural experiments have begun? By their very nature they are elements of change, sometimes radical change. Would the Church have tollerated such chaotic developments? I doubt it.

    The need for corporations have yet to arise. Enterprises on Safehold have not yet grown so large that their cessation would cause catastrophic dislocation. Housmyn’s are growing close to that stage. Until they do partnerships are sufficient. The business unit is define by the partners involved not as a concern with some independence from its owners. When the number of partners grows large enough, something like a corporation is the next logical step. The owners at that point no longer shape the day to day character of the enterprise. The enterprise can be seen as more independant of those owners.

    Yet none of these issues seem critical to Safehold at this time nor to the story. Have I missed something?

  26. RobertHuntingdon says:

    PZ, I think you’re close on most of that, but I do have to beg to differ on schools. I’m pretty sure I remember Howesman thinking something about “schools for their children” when musing about the perks he offers to his workers (and how that made them much more loyal to him than other employers).

    Now you’re still probably on the right track as far as higher education i.e. colleges and universities. For that matter you’re probably still right when it comes to what we think of as high school and possibly even junior high today. And especially so when you think of the abomination known of today as “public schools”. Schools in Charis are almost certainly privately-run, paid for as either an employer benefit or directly from the parent to the teacher (when the mom isn’t the teacher herself). They are probably on the level of early 1800s USA, to wit a single teacher giving basics like “reading, ‘riting, and ‘rithmatic” to a fairly young class of kids. Then by the time they are 8-10 they are hitting the “real world” on an apprenticeship level for boys and either “finishing school” for the rich girls or “household apprenticeship” in sewing and other “practical” skills for poor girls.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Charis is slightly ahead of the curve here, too. They probably are better than other nations. But I seriously doubt that the others have NO schooling options for children.

    I’m also going to have to quibble slightly on corporations. I agree they aren’t there yet but I think Howesman and Mychail are fast approaching the general idea with how they allow their employees to actually buy a stake in the factories.


  27. Mike says:

    Organized crime is like poverty. As far as we know, it is part of the human condition. As long as there is crime, someone is going to organize it. However, since it doesn’t play a part in the story for now, there is no reason for it to have been mentioned.

  28. Alan says:

    Peter Z

    Safehold is a designed society and the aim of the design is about preventing any change that could lead to the development of technology.

    I’d suggest Safehold lacks great companies because, apart from your reasons which are all valid, the Writ almost certainly forbids them. Langhorne set up a medieval society with a church that far exceeds in power anything found in medieval Europe. The first companies, like the British East India Company and the Bank of Amsterdam, developed in societies where the Reformation had been successful, the church was relatively powerless, and the sate did not fear change. Those are not models Langhorne would have emulated.

    There is also going to be a drastic shortage of capital on Safehold because so much is controlled by the church, which is not only richer than any medieval church, but itself active in banking activities. The church, even if it had no ‘religious’ problems with companies, would certainly have a business problem with anyone setting up in opposition to it.

    The Go4 did not just want to make an example of Charis. They saw Charis’ wealth and power as a threat to their monopoly.

  29. Peter Z says:

    On the Capital issue, I would disagree. There has been a shortage of capital for a long time. The war with Charis is freeing up that capital. Because the Chruch is spending like a drunken sailor, more of it is working through the economies of Safehold instead of sitting in Chruch coffers. That capital is flowing to those with the most efficient treatment of capital; Siddermark and Charis. I had argued from OAR that the Church spending spree to fight Charis would fuel the very innovations they seek to limit. A case in point would be the intent twisting by the Temple Land bailif in Siddermark. That Bailif is playing a risky game in order retain access to buy needed resources/services/products.

    My quible with corporations is that you emphasize the risk benefits of investing in them without mentioning the their most important feature. Until enough enterprises get large enough to be self-sustaining enterprises, there is no need to incorporate. Transfering parnership rights or submitting a new partnership is enough. Since Housmyn has begun sharing ownership with workers, such a need may become apparant in Charis. The number of owners will begin to expand beyond easy record keeping using the partnership relationship and a market will develop to trade small ownership stakes in solid self-sustaing enterprises. As these changes happen, enterprises will need to have a “life” of their own. The risk protection feature is purely incidental this greater need of perpetual existance.


  30. Peter Z says:

    Sorry comment 29 was directed at 28.

  31. E says:

    Intoxicants: Things other than alchohol like tobacco, etc. Just want to know if they’re out there or if Weber wants humanity to be squeaky clean.

    Organized crime: In poorer neighborhoods, gangs form out of collective bonding to prevent outright despair and other negative factors in the locality. The tendency of subsequent generations is to repeat known or discovered patterns and communicate the values established because gangs are one of the most prominent forms of identity sharing that the poor have available to them. There are pirates, Charis’ original rulers were pirates, and even pirates have tendencies to start their own traditions and generate their own culture.

    Warrior Culture: You mean to tell me that humanity hasn’t given some level of organization to all the sword wavers out there since Armageddon? Formal dueling at the very least should have arisen if both sides of a war in the past wanted to avoid pyrric battles. The other nations apparently have master swordworkers and weaponsmiths, which implied to me some level of cultural praise for the ability to wave a sword around slice bits off other people in a professional manner.

    Sports: More important to societies that aren’t possessed of broad entertainment venues like modern times. Combating boredom was a major part of being king/emperor for societies since before Rome (although especially in Rome) until mass-media and leagues of sports arose to take up the reigns. Water rugby and baseball can’t be the only things out there. Which brings up the question: Where are the theaters, concert halls, and other recreational things that arise out of very smart, rather healthy, and capably bored nations?

    Corporations: The Church doesn’t seem to be against usury, but the point of incorporation (originally) is to assign certain people the task to carry out a project for a given amount of time. Since lawyers used the 14th amendment in the US to redefine incorporation, the “Corporate Entity” concept allows for the indefinite management of a corporation, recognized as a person, that can own property and even other corporations. Mandating profit (bad move, US Congress of over a hundred years ago) allows and even forces corporations to become the soulless money machines they are stereotyped as. Charis has basically incorporated certain industries, like the foundries, but I’m interested in whether or not the government allowances for incorporation follows the original line of granting resources to a specific task or is headed the way of Ford and Time Motion Studies.

    Schools: Are intensely important. Just like many states went up in arms over Evolution being taught in school (not simply at the level of a theory that could be correct but AT ALL) the presence of the Church in the curriculum is probably going to be even more controversial to a planet that has for all intents and purposes integrated its religion into its government, social strata, and economics.

  32. Karina says:

    From the 1st book everyone is required to know the geography of the planet and if possible travel to Zion to see the main cathedral there. Everyone is also required to know the holy write I think, but OAR also mentioned that after the 1st 200 years literacy became a luxury, like it was in the Dark or Middle ages in Europe. So, it sounds as if Charis has the 1st college and basic education for it’s citizens. The places closest to Zion where the original serfdom that Langhorne setup has morphed into outright slavery and I guess that education is limited to ‘free’ and or rich people.

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