Pavel greeted his guests, “Thank you for coming this evening. After some, erm, constructive criticism from my last attempt to draft a basic set of laws…”
“Hahaha,” Iskra barked in laughter. “This is much better than that disaster you first wrote up. I mean, you must have realized you had a problem once Johannes was agreeing with everything.”
“I. am. so. glad. you. read. this. version.” Pavel enunciated, working to keep his temper from flaring up.
“There, there, my friend.” Jubal patted Pavel on the shoulder. “She’s mostly correct. The first draft was, was, uh, well, not really all that good. And this version is much better. And it’s usually a bad sign if Johannes is completely agreeing with you, especially where laws are concerned.”
“To be fair to you, I’m not sure what was worse, your first draft or the group revision boiled down to ‘Don’t be a dick’ and ‘Be excellent to each other,’” Kesten offered.
Belimarius added, “You did a pretty good job of working those concepts into your preamble. And with much better phrasing, of course.”
Kesten looked thoughtful at his copy and added, “This new draft is pretty good. It feels, it feels like something that could be a pillar of a kingdom.”
“Thank you,” replied Pavel. “But it’s not quite where I want it to be. Which is why I asked you to review the draft and then meet here this evening to refine it to a point that we can present it to King Fin and the rest of the council. I have some cheese and meats to eat in case it takes longer than I expected.”
“So you didn’t invite Johannes?” asked Iskra with a playfully raised eyebrow.
Pavel started slowly enunciating again, but quickly regained his calm, “I. did. but. he… he… (sigh) he just said, (Pavel mimicking Johannes), ‘Oh, no need for me to be there. I’ll just fix it up and make it sound good after you guys have your fun.’”
“Uh, you’re not going to actually give it to him to ‘fix it up’ right?” asked Iskra.
“Absolutely not!” replied an emphatic Pavel.
“Right. Well, I’m in. Let’s get this done,” said Kesten.
After much longer than what Pavel expected, they came up with
Finlands Grundlag (or Finland’s Constitution)
Preamble: Introduction to the founding values of the country with flowery language that basically embodies the virtues of “Don’t be a dick” and “Be excellent to each other.”
Article 1: Describes the council roles and obligations / responsibilities. The spy master role is described as an “Advisor.” This section also details a council voting mechanism. The ruler and their spouse each get three votes. All other council members (including the consort) get one vote. A vote on any decision can be called for by any council member. Decisions are made by the majority except where specifically stated otherwise. In the event of a tie, the ruler breaks the tie. General decisions by the council do not require votes, although a vote may be called for. Decisions to go to war, declare peace, adjust major laws, establish major treaties, annex land, and form or incorporate new settlements require a council vote. The ruler can declare a state of emergency in which they make all decisions without the vote of the council. In a state of emergency, the ruler can also invest particular council members with sole authority to make specific decisions without a council vote.
Article 2: Describes the mechanism for filling council roles through a majority vote of the current council members. This mechanism also includes the filling of the role of ruler. This section states that the designated heir of the ruler is expected to take the throne when the current ruler (and their spouse) step down, however, a vote is still required.
Article 3: Describes the mechanism to remove council members, including the ruler, by a ¾ majority vote. If the ruler has declared a state of emergency, they can still be removed by this vote.
Article 4: Defines citizenship and the obligations of the people to the state as well as the obligations of the state to the people. The state builds and supports infrastructure and defense, the citizens follow the laws and pay taxes.
Article 5: Defines this document as the supreme law of the land.
Article 6: Describes the mechanism to amend this document by a ¾ majority vote of council members.
Article 7: The Rights of All in Finland
1) Freedom to All – Includes the freedom to speak and assemble as well as the freedom of will, travel, and form. Prohibits slavery.
2) Freedom of ownership – The government cannot claim property except in emergency, war, or special circumstances in pursuit of a crime, and must pay restitution for use.
3) Right to a public trial and informed of all charges and witnesses against you. You also have the right to call witnesses in your defense and the opportunity to defend yourself against all charges. Punishments shall not be cruel, unusual, or torturous.
and the follow up document
Crime and Punishment
High Crimes: Treason, Murder, Slavery, Kidnapping, Grievous Assault or Harm, Unlawful Necromancy relating to Undeath
Low Crimes: Minor Assault or Harm, Theft, Destruction of Property, Neglect, Avoidance of Punishment.
Punishments for High Crimes: Death, Imprisonment, Fines or Restitution, Exile
Punishments for Low Crimes: Imprisonment, Fines or Restitution, Exile