For example when I am dealing with someone on a professional level, such as with my company and others or when about His Imperial Majesty's business as us Imperial Naval Intelligence (Retired) are wont to be, I am quite the decent, upright, curbed tongued gentlebeing as one of my Standing in the Peerage, the Court, and of course with my fellow Imperial Chartered companies is expected and should be. I tend to keep the ranting to a minimum (I do a bit when defending things like keeping the Hull Codes in ACS) and try and remember I am an adult human thus keep a civil tongue in my head.
Now, when I hit the Commons, I am if you see me there, a rather opinionated, know it all, critic of the Empire's actions, a not so closet republican in ways of the ancient days of Terra's (and in the House of Thornwood, respected learned master Niccolo Machiavelli, who really gets a bad rep) and the founder's of his birth nation, and general pain in the ass. What I say there is not a reflection of how I handle myself (mostly) on the professional end. What I say there is what I say when I am not working. This me on me time, not company time. The Institute by the way, is on the Commons. When the company site goes up, on that it will again be more genteel.
Which led me to wonder, how have the Imperiums handled the situation?
For one, let us first acknowledge that I will have to address this in greater depth in a later post, but for now I thought I would put this out here on the Institute Node and see if it lured out some commentary. Surely some of you have some thoughts about the things I present here, please share them. (Yes, Kobold that means you, my previous commenter, as this touches on Nobles as you might recall some of them have the Right and Responsibility to Dispense both the High and Low Justice and Enforce the Laws of the Permatic Imperium. Or perhaps I hadn't mentioned that? Either way, it's out there now and thus part of Imperial High Law)
Here is what I have so far as written in the Institute's Notebooks Volume 1, Edition 1, Catalog Number: NB-1-1-11112011-XXXX2013. *he pauses to light up smokables, because he has bad habits*
This is what got me to post.
Now, some of you may have noticed that I first used the word "origin", struck it and replaced it with "precedent". Why, you may even wonder did I change the word and what was I originally thinking? Of course you may not, but now that I made that point you do, or maybe you could care less and wish the rambling old Noble would either get to point, offer a job or at least buy another round for you and crew of fellow Travellers since listening to all this boring shit is thirsty work.
The reason is because the notebook pages are small and I want to preserve that it was an Imperial Citizen Right. I know the origins. See above for some of them. And those personal examples above have their own origin which is the original rights such those shown in various empires that allow you to get away with just generally spouting what you wanted in the commons. People listen or they didn't or perhaps they dropped a dime on your crazy/seditious ass. In fact it might very well be a way to gather street level feedback on what is going on in the realm. Not necessarily to sniff out criminals and enemies of the state, but just see what is really going on without certain filters.
Perhaps the Imperiums, Republics and other interstellar polities of Man and Kin (later to collectively be known as the ManKind, as in "Oh, that Sophont, yeah, it's a ManKind, a Synthetic I if I recall correctly.") allowed their Agents to actually act in their official capacity while in the Commons or they are considered merely as Citizens when they speak there? I suspect it depends on the Imperium and in the case of the Fifth Imperium which it has been made plain for the last two centuries that Vladimir II takes his model, Agents of the Crown and Imperium are considered, not only Off Duty, but in fact merely a Citizen when present in the Commons. They may immediately revert back to On Duty status when they leave the Commons, depending on factors such as was this the Agent's Scheduled Day Off, on some form of Leave (perhaps they went their to protest the low level of actual care delivered to Agents when they are severely wounded in the line of duty), maybe they went due to some Creed's Registered Requirements*.
The point being just how far can you go and far is the State willing to let you go before "Something Bad Happens", also known as the dreaded "Imperial Entanglements". And does that mean they grab you on the way out or do they bust in full on SWAT dynamic mode (Perhaps even Moscow Militia style? For those who didn't shudder a bit when mashing that up with a Traveller TL-C+, please use the internet and catch some videos of the MM in action.) or even perhaps a bit of undercover Special Branch style work? (Yes, I do love some UK police stuff, which is why I so love DREDD 3D.)
These are things I am thinking about. Right now I am leaning toward a Citizen can speak what may considered treason, but if they are not acting on it, then they may blab revolution all they want. Now, the Imperium may very well look at you to see if you are just a bit pissed off today or a genuine threat to the safety and security of the Imperium. Referee's Call on that one, I think. I mean, let's face it the Emperor of the Permatic Imperium (me behind the screen) does not actually get involved at that level. Now Viscount Madeupth Isminute, head of the Imperial Security Special Branch being on the other hand does. I think the Permatic Imperium may even handle it a rational way the Zhodani do in the OTU and check with psionics to see if you are huffing or prepping. Then based on that either get you some help or arrest you and see how bad the damage really is.
Well, a friend has called and so I must close earlier than expected. Please forgive any glaring errors as I had no time to really proof it and as usual I am way past my bed time. I will however, if people show an interest pick this topic up later.
*The future equivalent of what ancient Terrans might consider a religion or a philosophic movement with minor government oversight in its internal affairs (excepting Capital Crimes) and recognition of its official status, but no mucking about with it otherwise.