SolyWack

What Goverment type is Equestria?

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This question used to seem like it had an obvious answer: Monarchy right? I mean the rulers name Is Princess Celestia. But a lot of canon has been added to the show that the answer is much more blurry now.
 
First Argument: A monarchy is differentiated from other government types because the ruler is chosen from heredity. But who was the ruler before Celestia? Discord, Celestia took that power away from Discord, with weapons, the elements of harmony. Yes, they were colorful rainbow weapons, but a rose by... well you get the idea. Celestia took that power from Discord through a military takeover, not heredity.
 
This could mean that in realty Equestria could be a Dictatorship, or Despotism. "Dictators usually resort to force to gain despotic political power"(britannica.com). This is exactly what Celestia did. Yes, the people rejoiced and life was better, but that doesn't change the fact she did it.
 
BUT! A point could be made for the other side too. Monarchies aren't required to be ruled absolutely. "monarchies are not necessarily authoritarian; the enlightened absolutists of the Enlightenment were monarchs who allowed various freedoms"(newworldencyclopedia.org). Celestia seems to give out much of her power to local authorities (i.e. Mayors).

 

Also, a few military generals traded Dictator in for a name better suited for monarchies. An example would be after Napoleons successful coup, he became an Emperor. (I'm not going to cite that because its so easy to confirm)
 
Another Point: "Many monarchs once claimed the right to rule by the will of a deity"(newworldencyclopedia.org). Celestia isn't just ruling on behalf of a deity, she is the diety. This could be evidence enough that Equestria is a Monarchy but also...
 
... that it is a Theocracy. However, theocracies have always been ruled by religious leaders, NOT gods (for obvious reason). So this point may or may not hold value depending on how you define it.

 

                                                                           *    *     * 

 

 

These are my notes on possible government types for Equestria's possible governments. Needless to say, I overanalyze the crap out of cartoon ponies. ^_^

 

You may notice that I never said one answer definitively. I want to see what you guys think Equestria's Governmental type truly is. Post your thoughts below.

  • Brohoof 2

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benevolent monarchy in which the city states pays tribute to the alicorn sisters, well thats my headcanon anyway

its kinda confusing now since we now have 4 of them but it seems like celestia and luna still have the top seats

 

 

Complete_Equestria_Games_brochette_S04E2

 

Edited by Alto

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What about Princess Luna, Cadence, and Twilight?

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Seeing as how our world theocracies rule with religious leaders acting as spokespersons for the actual deities, I'd say that it's sortakinda a theocracy?

 

Or as Miguel says in Road to El Dorado "The gods speak for themselves now"

Edited by manic

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I'd say Equestria is a dictatorship, the way Celestia is in power and not holding elections and stuff seems like anything but a democracy. But the ponies seem happy and free after all, and that's the most important thing I suppose.

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Monarchy. Twilight and Cadance are kinda like vassals or something who rule in that area but still answer to Princess Celestia.

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It's an absolute monarchy with a benevolent dictator. Couldn't really be anything else.

 

Where my unanswered questians are is in the Crystal Empire. First, it's not really an Empire as it only has one city, and second, is it a part of the Sun+moonbutt dynasty? We've seen them indirectly administer it through orders to Twilight and co, but the sovereign status of the place is still rather unknown.

Edited by Paianni

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@

 

Well to that last point, I've always thought of Equestria as a "Confederate Thearchy." Not to be confused with a theocracy. Philosophers such as Alexis de Tocqueville have posited that the most benevolent human governments are necessarily incomplete because they have to be able to effectively enforce laws, but cannot apply all the functions of the state as universalities lest they give way to despotism. So the only truly "perfect" government would be one run by a mind that had no need for generalities, the mind of God.

 

Now to what degree Celestia and Luna are indeed divine is debatable but they are immortals (or at least long lived enough that there's little difference) who control fundamental aspects of their world necessary for survival and have been salvific figures within the realm's lore. At the very least, they are alicorns, so they at least qualify as being some form of higher being than the rest of the ponies.

 

That all being said, it's clear, especially from our latest episode with the delegates in Canterlot, all of the places in Equestria seem to function like independent city-states just within the domain of greater Equestria.

 

So all in all, by my interpretation, all of the regions of Equestria are pretty much self-sustaining and self-ruled but Celestia and Luna have the trusted authority (or "divine right," depending on your view) to intervene where and when they deem it necessary because everypony has faith that whatever they do is for their benefit and protection.

Edited by Steel Accord
  • Brohoof 1

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It sounds like a constitutional diarchy (monarchy with 2 rulers) and I say this because while Twilight has power she dosen't seem to have as much of it as Celestia and Luna and while Cadence has some power most of it is used ruling the Crystal Empire leaving Celestia and Luna. Though we haven't seen it Equestria probably also has democratic elements as well such as a congress/parliament and might possibly have governors.

  • Brohoof 3

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I'll go w theocracy (Celestia & Luna)  You could set up a poll & let fans vote on it.  Most fanfics seem to assume some sort of Constitutional Monarchy, with the rulers having varying amounts of power

 

Recall one story (ICR by who) where a civil servant said

The Princesses reign

The Nobility rules

We run the place 

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I say absolute monarchy. Luna is junior co-monarch to Celestia. Cadance, Twilight and Blueblood are royalty but not the monarchs.

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I'll go w theocracy (Celestia & Luna) You could set up a poll & let fans vote on it. Most fanfics seem to assume some sort of Constitutional Monarchy, with the rulers having varying amounts of power

 

Recall one story (ICR by who) where a civil servant said

The Princesses reign

The Nobility rules

We run the place

I would have made it a poll, but theres so many subsets of government, and theres other options i didnt even put up. I didnt want to limit the possibilities by a poll.

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As a grumpy old fogey, I'd say that the form of government isn't as important as the personality of the ruler.  After all, the 2 strictest dictatorships that ever existed are Heaven -and Hell.

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I'll go w theocracy (Celestia & Luna)  You could set up a poll & let fans vote on it.  Most fanfics seem to assume some sort of Constitutional Monarchy, with the rulers having varying amounts of power

 

Recall one story (ICR by who) where a civil servant said

The Princesses reign

The Nobility rules

We run the place 

 

Again, I think the idea of a Thearchy makes much more sense since it's not the church that's running things. In fact we don't even SEE a Church in Equestria! Why would you? After all, why have a church when God lives right in the capital city?

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In one of the episodes (ICR which one), the CMCs took Scootaloo's scooter through what looked like a funeral, otherwise Hasbro has strictly avoided any reference to religion (Too controversial, I suppose)

 

One thing they haven't gotten into even in fanfics (AFAIK) is the question "Is there a written or unwritten constitution?".  England, for example, has an unwritten constitution.  The law is what it is & can be changed fairly easily.  The USA has a written constitution & all laws have to conform to it.  Thus, you can have an illegal law! (Discord would be so proud of us).  That is a large part of what the Supreme Court does -decide if laws are legal or not.

 

The episodes just flat out do not have enough detail to decide what is going on.  Over a Barrel is the only episode I can recall that would even involve a court & they settled the land dispute out of court. 

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Thanks to the Greco-Roman influence, I imagine Equestria as basically being the Roman Kingdom (that existed before the Republic). Info on the Senate back then:

 

 

According to legend, Romulus established the Senate after he founded Rome by personally selecting the most noble men (wealthy men with legitimate wives and children) to serve as a council for the city. As such, the Senate was the King’s advisory council as theCouncil of State. The Senate was composed of 300 Senators, with 100 Senators representing each of the three ancient tribes of Rome: the Ramnes (Latins), Tities (Sabines), and Luceres (Etruscans) tribes. Within each tribe, a Senator was selected from each of the tribe's ten curiae. The king had the sole authority to appoint the Senators, but this selection was done in accordance with ancient custom.

Under the monarchy, the Senate possessed very little power and authority as the king held most of the political power of the state and could exercise those powers without the Senate's consent. The chief function of the Senate was to serve as the king’s council and be his legislative coordinator. Once legislation proposed by the king passed the Comitia Curiata, the Senate could either veto it or accept it as law. The king was, by custom, to seek the advice of the Senate on major issues. However, it was left to him to decide what issues, if any, were brought before them and he was free to accept or reject their advice as he saw fit. Only the king possessed the power to convene the Senate, except during the interregnum, during which the Senate possessed the authority to convene itself.

So I imagine Equestria's Congress working like that.

Edited by Sapphire Raider

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A soft dictatorship (no mass killing to keep the ponies fearfully in line) under the rule of alicorns.

 

 

In many fan fictions, royalty (the alicorns) have to often answer to something called 'The Council' before they can make any big decision. The Council, are a group of normal, non alicorn ponies to represent all ordinary ponies and races.

Edited by Bendy
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What I find interesting is that Unicorns were ruled by a monarchy (king), the Pegesis by a military junta (although not a perfect definition), Crystal ponies a princess, and the Earth Ponies a chancellor, which implies an election and something more democratic. Yet, it in the end, it was a monarchy that prevailed and we have no signs of civil leaders beyond Mayor Mare. The Earth Ponies seemed to have given up on democracy.

 

Is there a local government? Does anything remain of the former governments and leaders? I accept the princesses at face value, but what lies beyond them is fascinating to consider.

Edited by Nature's Spell

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I would call it a confederacy of city states that pay taxes to a central government that then uses that money to pay for government services (ie army medicare ext) so as long as the citys pay their taxes they can do what ever they want.

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