Lit The Imperial Senate

Discussion in 'Literature' started by General Immodet, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. General Immodet Jedi Grand Master

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    Up till now, the Imperial Senate has been largely ignored in the EU.
    Apart from characters such as Leia Organa, Bail Organa and Simon Greyshade, the Imperial Senators have been largely ignored.

    After ROTS, the Senate did not have the power it used to have.
    The Moffs and the Ruling Council Members became the real people with power and were the ones taking governmental decisions. Sate Pestage took care of the Empire's day to day business.
    Ultimately, Palpatine dissolved the Senate around the time of ANH.
    .
    Still, I would like to see more stories about the Imperial Senate and Imperial Senators.
    What do you think?
    Are there stories about the Imperial Senate I am not aware of?
  2. Gorefiend Chosen One

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    There is Mon Mothma and Garm Bel Iblis. ;) Though yeah, we have gotten a few showing up here and there, just really never very prominently.
  3. JackG Force Ghost

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    I really, really, really, REALLY want a Luceno political novel set in the Dark Times/concurrent with ANH which stars Imperial Senators, as well as Isard and Dangor and all the other Imperial cronies. Palpatine himself should, of course, also appear. The interaction between the ostensible leaders of the Empire, the senators, with the true leaders: the Inner Circle and IRC members would be fascinating. I imagine they would hate each other.

    And then there's the lapdog senators, whom actually pander to every request of the Emperor's, and the senators who actually believe in the Empire. What would they be like? Would they actually believe the Senate was infiltrated by the Alliance, like the Emperor claims? Would they welcome the dissolution of the means to their power?

    I would love to see how Organa, Bel Iblis, Mothma and any remaining Congregation of 2000 senators attempted to clandestinely thwart the Emperor in session.

    Did the Emperor personally attend many sessions himself after Declaration of the New Order or did Pestage serve as his representative perpetually?

    When did the Imperial Senate transfer from the Senate Building to the Imperial Palace?

    What slander was circulated about figures such as Valorum and Ashgad? Did the Senate support the removal of the alien statues in the adjacent plaza?

    When did Sly Moore and Mas Amedda "retire" from office?

    How did Jar Jar do as Senator of Naboo and the Chommell Sector for the thirteen years after the Declaration of a New Order (no, seriously: it happened)?

    How did Pooja and Leia (unknowing first cousins) interact? Were they friends due to their secret rebel sympathies? How did Pooja react to Leia's "death"?

    What persecution and changes did alien Republic Senators who previously supported Palpatine as Chancellor ironically receive in the New Order? Did Orn Free Taa live long enough to learn Palpatine would be the oppressor of all aliens?

    I think Canna Omonda (senator for Chandrila) would be a perfect candidate for more development; she is a fascinating character -- designed to be a puppet successor to the rebellious and outspoken Mon Mothma, she was herself executed by the Empire for being too vocal of the Empire's crimes.

    I think the Imperial Senate is a truly interesting institution in fascinating situation; a body which must remain around if Palpatine is to cling to the illusion of democracy, which he is literally waiting for an excuse to sweep away. Bring on more stories about the Imperial Senate, I say.
    Last edited by JackG, Aug 18, 2013
  4. General Immodet Jedi Grand Master

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    By the way, why did Palpatine dissolve the Senate right before ANH?
    Was it because the Death Star was almost complete or just because the Senate was inefficient?
  5. JackG Force Ghost

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    Ostensibly it was because rebel elements had infiltrated the institution. Truly I think it was because the Death Star's completion meant Palpatine no longer had to adhere to the façade of there being a need for the redundant Senate; he could just destroy an systems which went out of line.
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  6. General Immodet Jedi Grand Master

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    Didn't Mas Amedda stay a member of the ruling council?
  7. Gorefiend Chosen One

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    He apparently got removed from the council and sent out on menial tasks like recovering Jedi and Sith Artefacts.
    Last edited by Gorefiend, Aug 19, 2013
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  8. JackG Force Ghost

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    I extrapolate and say he got killed by Palpatine as he knew far too much.
  9. General Immodet Jedi Grand Master

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    He always knew far too much... Wasn't it once stated Palpatine taught Mas Amedda some dark side tricks?
    We obviously need a novel or a comic about what happened to him. Maybe he was part of Trachta's coup?
  10. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    After ROTS, the Senate did not have the power it used to have.


    The Senate still had a tremendously important role if people like Tagge were worried that the Empire would be ungovernable without it and if even Darth Vader would have to answer to them for his actions. Bail Organa was able to frustrate many Imperial objectives through his role in the Senate, particularly since he was on the committee in charge of military oversight and appropriations. He was also able to use his resources within that committee to transfer funds to the Rebellion.

    The Moffs and the Ruling Council Members became the real people with power and were the ones taking governmental decisions. Sate Pestage took care of the Empire's day to day business.
    Ultimately, Palpatine dissolved the Senate around the time of ANH.


    Do not conflate the mofference with the Ruling Council. The mofference consisted of colonial administrators -- they ran sectoral governments, which (depending on the sector) could run the gamut from a mere functionary appendage to the powerful local governments to an actual Imperial administration of the sector itself. Moffs in the Core Worlds or in Tapani space were often less powerful than the local governments there, who had better connections at Court. This was by design.

    The Ruling Council was essentially a regency council -- it governed in the Emperor's name. The mofference answered to the privy council (happily, I've discovered that WEG has indeed used the term privy counselor for Imperial advisors, which is nice) -- the privy council consists of all the Imperial advisors who are given responsibility over various sectors and regions by the Emperor, who advise the Emperor, and who occasionally go on fact-finding missions to sectors as Imperial representatives.

    Sate Pestage did not take care of ruling the Empire day-to-day in this time period -- at least until the period up to the Battle of Yavin, including the suspension of the Senate, it was Ars Dangor who ruled the Empire. Pestage occupied this role from at least Hoth onwards.

    Finally -- the Emperor did not "dissolve the Senate" -- Ars Dangor suspended it for the duration of the emergency. :)

    It would be great -- except I am really wary, given Luceno's tendency to make Imperials into Space Republicans. He is the go-to political author for Star Wars... but I dunno. I'm worried. Especially as the Senate ought to be more of a parliamentary style body anyway, the American-style references are bothersome.

    Luceno also, for some reason, has never once mentioned Dangor in any of his novels, ever, despite being the best continuity-oriented novelist we have.

    It would be nice to see some proper court intrigue though as you're right, the IC and IRC are the true rulers of the Empire. WEG has been the only source to really do that properly, although we got some references to court intrigues in Stackpole and Hambly as well.

    Well, so we've got something called the New Order Party on local worlds. There's probably a pan-galactic NOP as well, and that's the one that most of those true believers you mention would be a part of. As COMPNOR is a grassroots fanatical organization with heavy fascist elements, it'd be very interesting to see those psychotics and how they acted: especially the earnest believers among them, who may have been deluded into somehow thinking they're doing the right thing.

    I'd particularly love to see their interaction with the old "Core faction" mentioned in Luceno's Cloak of Deception -- that was the faction of Valorum, Organa, and Antilles. It is, essentially, the conservative party of the Old Republic (conservative in the international, not American, sense) and probably still existed under the Imperial Senate because the Emperor tried to cultivate the loyalty of the Core Worlds. I can see Imperials of the Generational strain, as well as aristocratic ones like Dangor, favoring the Core "Conservatives" over the crazy demagoguery of the New Order Party -- and I can see Organa using this ancient party as a way to present himself as the "loyal opposition" to the New Order party, again, in a parliamentary sense. I imagine that Bail Organa was probably highly regarded in Imperial high society because of the way he acted as a pillar of galactic society despite his opposition to the Empire -- or actually, he'd probably say "I don't personally oppose the Emperor or the Empire, but these policies the New Order party is legislating are completely abhorrent..."

    Then we'd have Mon Mothma's party. Mothma and Organa were probably publically distant because Organa didn't make his role too obvious. The Rebel Alliance sourcebook indicates Mothma was a progressive and a revolutionary even during the Old Republic, and that this different from the establishment orientation of Organa.


    Given that Bel Iblis and Mothma had attempts on their lives, they were probably far more vocal than Organa was.

    There's little to no indication that the Grand Vizier had any role in the Senate under the Empire. Ars Dangor was the one who dissolved the Senate, and Alec Pradeux handled announcements to the galactic media. They were probably the Emperor's two front men in the political arena.

    One thing I'd be curious about is if Palpatine had any puppet chancellors appointed as the Empire's head of government (voted in when the NOP was in majority or in a coalition) -- something about Bail Organa being elected as chancellor under the Emperor when his opposition party was in power amuses me.

    I like the idea of Jar Jar as an elderstatesman. I really do. I like the idea he grew out of his stupidity at some point. :p

    The rest of your questions are also good, but I don't have answers for those. :p
  11. JackG Force Ghost

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    Aug 15, 2011
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    I knew I didn't imagine this:
    Where that comes from, I don't know.
    (I don't own any of the sources of that page, though maybe you do)
    http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Grand_Vizier
  12. Gorefiend Chosen One

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    I personally always wondered how many of the Emperors Advisors are actually just airheads like Coh Veshiv, who seems to have made more of nuisance of himself than anything else, but yet was apparently still influential enough to have to be kept around and not just killed when he got to annoying.
  13. Gamiel Force Ghost

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    Dec 16, 2012
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    I have not read any of Luceno's work but can you explain how he has a "[...] tendency to make Imperials into Space Republicans.", bitte.
  14. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    @JackG -- I have most of those sources. The problem with the Wook is that it's... hugely imprecise, so the term "head of the Imperial government" may not actually mean anything. After all, the selfsame Core faction I referred to in my post is described as "liberal" by the Wook because whomever wrote that article is writing like a silly American :p

    The other part you bolded might actually be based in some sources, I'll have to do some digging. Senior member of the Imperial Ruling Council is an exaggeration -- not expressly written in any source, but it's a possible supposition given that he was running the Empire day-to-day post Hoth (note well: Dangor was able to get the IRC and other leading courtiers, officers, and plutocrats to form the ERC with him in charge, though).

    Custodian of the Imperial Seal is literally true though -- that's attested in multiple sources, including the DESB (the first such). So surrounded by a potentially true claim and a true claim, I'm not sure what to make of the "President of the Imperial Senate" claim. I wish Wook had the footnoting requirements of Wikipedia. Sigh.

    Most of them probably were, yes. The Inner Circle and the members of the Imperial Ruling Council probably had the real steel, I'd imagine though. Other advisors were probably purposefully dorks and clowns and flatterers because it suited the Emperor to have them be such. Imagine: an ambitious moff (as moffs tended to be) answering to some prancing ninny of an advisor --- too delicious a prospect for the Emperor to refuse! [face_laugh]
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  15. JackG Force Ghost

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    Aug 15, 2011
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    Yeah, the footnoting was basically non-existent there. I've been checking the DESB, but it says nothing of him being the President of the Senate. It's likely an assumption on the writer's part, which is annoying. I would like the implication, it really makes sense, but I would like an official source. In fact, the DESB seems to contradict it:

    Doesn't sound like someone who is President of the Senate. But who would it be? Dangor springs to mind, I suppose.

    Also, @GrandAdmiralJello -- here's some evidence to suggest that Pestage was a leader of the IRC, though it doesn't explicitly say he was the leader:
  16. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    Yeah, what I'd say is that he was the leader of the council co-extensive with the time that he "ran the Empire day-to-day" and that he occupied that role as part of that office. No sources are direct, but there's enough circumstantial evidence.

    As far as who heads the Senate -- Dangor certainly seemed to handle senatorial matters for the Emperor (he's the one that suspended it, after all) but does that mean he was the head of the Senate, or is he acting as the Throne's representative to the Senate? Hard to say.

    edit: In fact, I have to wonder if it's left-over discontentment at Pestage taking over his old role as head of the IRC that was what inspired Dangor to oppose Pestage's regency after Endor? That is, assuming that they both weren't in cahoots together purposefully wrecking things after Endor.

    I like the wrecker idea... but I also like the idea of them using the post-Endor period to fight over past grievances too.
    Last edited by GrandAdmiralJello, Aug 19, 2013
  17. JackG Force Ghost

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    Aug 15, 2011
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    I imagine them to be petty, spiteful and arrogant, so I like the idea of them using the death of the Emperor as an opportunity to seize power and remove each other as political opponents.

    In fact, I would have liked the X-Wing comics to have shown Dangor (and not kill Pestage, but who's asking?). Such a missed opportunity. And that Cabal, that gives me a headache trying to reconcile that with all the other goings on.
  18. Gamiel Force Ghost

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    My bold
    As a member of the Mrlsst Trade and Science Academy I fully agree
  19. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    Great question!

    I'll just put this here: http://eleven-thirtyeight.com/2013/07/politics-and-the-expanded-universe-part-i/

    :)
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  20. CooperTFN TFN EU Staff Emeritus

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    There, see how easy that was? :p
  21. Gamiel Force Ghost

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    Ah, now I see:)
  22. Havac Former Moderator

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    I would really love to see more on the political workings of the Empire at the higher levels in general, and more on the much-neglected Senate in particular.

    I think that more use should be made of the Senate's dissolution. One the one hand, since it's technically suspended, Senators may still be drawing pay without having to do anything -- it makes a perfect sinecure, and it would be fun to see important Senators still packing the Imperial Court years after their positions ceased to be relevant. There may also be Senators quietly purged from the rolls while it's in suspension. There's also the possibility of seeing out-of-work loyalist Senators transferred to different positions as rewards. I'd be really interested in seeing a Moff or Grand Moff who was a Senator previously, or an ex-Senator who got a cushy corporate job with a big contractor like SFS or KDY, or establishing that certain members of Palpatine's inner circle used to be Senators, or having a Senator show up in an administrative job.
  23. JoinTheSchwarz Comms Admin & Community Manager

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    According to the Imperial Sourcebook, Palpatine would create redundant and opposed administrationr to keep the ambitions of his Advisors in check. I suspect that was the case with Dangor and Pestage, forever vying for the "second in charge" positions.

    As to why it was Pestage who assumed control after Endor, well, he had served the Sith since the times of Plagueis. Maybe he had always been the one supposed to keep everything ready for the Emperor's return. Or maybe he was simply more crafty than Dangor. For all we know he was who spread those rumors about Dangor dying aboard the DS2. :p
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  24. General Immodet Jedi Grand Master

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    Who was waiting for Palpatine to return? Who knew he would come back and who did not?
    What was Sate Pestage's and Lord Blackhole's involvement in Palpatine's return?
  25. GrandAdmiralJello Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque

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    Yes -- he would routinely give the administration of an advisor's home system to one of his rivals as a way to keep them in check, and also to focus their rivalries on each other instead of him. Crafty!

    Well, Dangor is also supposed to be Palpatine's longest -- or one of his longest -- associates, from the time he was a senator. We didn't see him at all in Plagueis, but there's an unnamed dude from Naboo that he befriended that could be him. The reason Pestage took control after Endor I think is straight forward: he was running the Empire day to day since after Hoth (a position Dangor used to, but apparently no longer) occupied -- perhaps because of the post-Yavin shakeups? -- so he was the natural regent since he was already in charge anyway. It's just that Dangor didn't agree, and neither did the Imperial Ruling Council, since they both immediately started issuing orders in the name of the Empire too as part of the new Emperor's Ruling Circle Dangor led (CTD has them in charge of the Empire, and they are who Zsinj broke from, and DESB has Pestage's ouster much earlier than Mandatory Retirement).