The worlds of Humanity and their allies, in order to promote the welfare of their people and to ensure tranquility, justice and prosperity, do hereby swear allegiance to the Emperor of Humanity as the trustee of civilization and the personification of a united realm.
Article I: Membership
Section 1. A Member of the Empire of Humanity is a signatory of this Imperial Charter and accepts the Charter and its amendments without reservation. A Member must have a population of at least 100,000 Sentients and a single head of state and must maintain a permanent diplomatic presence on Terra. A Member will consist of no more than a single world and its attendant stellar system of gravitationally bound bodies not to exceed one-half standard light year in diameter. A stellar system may have multiple Member worlds, which must divide the system’s bodies and resources among themselves, but no single world may be a divided Member.
Section 2. Systems or installations that do not meet the criteria of membership will be Imperial Dependencies, under the jurisdiction of the Imperial Ministry the Emperor deems appropriate, until such time as the entity qualifies for Membership. Artificial Sentients will not count toward the minimum Sentient requirement unless such Sentients are Imperial Citizens. Once a Dependency has achieved the requisites for Membership, the Emperor will call upon the Dependency to form a unified government, which must convene within a decade of the achievement of this status. A world that looses requisite status and does not regain such status within a decade will revert to the status of an Imperial Dependency.
Section 3. The Emperor will determine the suitability of an alien race for inclusion into the Empire on an individual basis. Aliens races are Major if they accomplish successful crewed sub-light or superluminal interstellar flight. These races, if deemed suitable for Membership by the Emperor, will have equivalent rights as Humanity to trade, settle and conduct themselves as full Member states from each of their Member systems. Aliens not qualified for Major status may still become full Members of the Empire by meeting the requirements of Article I, Section 1, but these races will be considered Minor races and will not automatically retain rights to settle other worlds and expand their Membership or status. The Emperor has discretion to deem a Minor race to have Major status regardless of achievement. A race not suitable for Membership yet within the boundaries of the Empire, will be considered quarantined or protected by the Emperor and military force as necessary. No race may be involuntarily inducted into the Empire. No member of a protected or quarantined race may be involuntarily removed from its world.
Section 4. The Emperor will be arbitrator of disputes between Member states and between Member races over issues of settlement and commerce. Only the Emperor can authorize the settlement or exploitation of an unoccupied system, which is defined as the gravitational domain of a stellar or sub-stellar body and the interstellar space between that body and a settled system.
Section 5. The Empire and Imperial Law will be the sole authority outside the gravitational domain of a Member state or the volume with a diameter of one-half standard light year from the most massive body of that domain, whichever is smaller.
Article II: The Emperor and the Ministries
Section 1. The Emperor is the head of state and trustee of the Empire of Humanity and serves for life. The Emperor must be a Human of Nobilis race and must have achieved the self-referenced age of twenty-one years upon ascension. The Emperor may specify an heir and, if the claim is clearly recorded, this claimant will assume office with the confirmation of a simple majority of the Imperial Congress. If the heir is a minor, a Regent, appointed by the Imperial Congress by simple majority, will govern the Empire until the Emperor comes of age and is confirmed by the Imperial Congress.
Section 2. If the succession of the Emperor is in doubt, the Imperial Congress may appoint a new Emperor by a vote of two-thirds of the Membership present, provided that the voters for the new Emperor equal at least one half of the total Membership of that body. The Imperial Congress must continue to vote until a claimant receives the necessary votes and is qualified for the office as specified in Article II, Section 1. Until such time as a new Emperor is approved, the senior Minister of the previous Emperor’s cabinet will act as Emperor.
Section 3. The Emperor is subject to Imperial Law and can be impeached and removed from office by the Imperial Congress. A vote of two-thirds of the total Membership of the Imperial Congress is necessary to initiate an impeachment proceeding. If an Emperor is impeached, the Imperial Congress will vote for twelve Members to form an investigative committee. Each Imperial Member will vote for one committee Member and the twelve Members with the most votes, after re-votes as necessary, will sit on this committee. The investigative committee will review the charges against the Emperor and will proceed with trial if three-quarters of the Members of the committee vote to proceed. The trial of the Emperor will be conducted by the investigative committee and adjudicated by the chairman of the Imperial Congress, with the full body of the Congress voting for conviction or acquittal with three-quarters of those present and two-thirds of the whole body required to vote for removal of the Emperor. Upon removal, the Imperial Congress will then appoint a new Emperor as specified in Article II, Section 2.
Section 4. The Emperor has sole authority to appoint and dismiss Ministers of his cabinet. The Emperor can create and dismiss Ministers, but the only Ministries with bureaucratic function and enforcement authority will be the Ministries of Defense, Justice, Commerce, Science and State. Additional bureaucratic Ministries with enforcement authority must be approved by a simple majority resolution of the Imperial Congress. The Emperor has absolute authority to adjudicate disputes of jurisdiction between Ministries.
Section 5. The Ministry of Defense will have sole authority for the protection of Imperial facilities and Imperial space. Only it may maintain warships capable of interstellar travel. It is responsible for the protection of Member states from external attacks and attacks by other Members. The Imperial Navy will be responsible for space-based military action and the transport of military resources between systems. The Imperial Marines will be responsible for military action on or near world surfaces, boarding actions, and for direct military action against installations. The Imperial Guard is responsible for the protection of the Emperor and for overt and covert action under the command of the Emperor aimed at preserving the Empire.
Section 6. The Minister of Justice will have sole authority for executing, prosecuting and otherwise upholding Imperial Law. Imperial Law governs inter-Member disputes and criminal offenses perpetuated on Imperial property or Imperial agents. Imperial Law will govern the crimes of sedition and treason and the murder of Nobilis or Imperial Citizens where not acceptably prosecuted by local law. All crimes of genocide or illegal manufacture, possession, or use of weapons of mass destruction fall under Imperial jurisdiction. The Emperor is the final arbiter of Imperial Law. The Emperor has the discretion to hear appeals and can pardon Imperial offenses, though the Emperor does not have the power of self-pardon.
Section 7. The Ministry of Commerce is responsible for trade between Member states. It will maintain the common currency and the central bank. It will conduct a decadal census to determine the population and domestic product of each Member and Dependency. It will report to the Emperor when a Dependency has reached requisite population for Imperial Membership. It will tax all Members at the same fixed percentage of the domestic product, determined by the Emperor and confirmed by a simple majority of the Imperial Congress. It will tax all interstellar commercial transactions at a fixed value added tax determined by the Emperor and confirmed by a simple majority of the Imperial Congress. It will disperse Imperial funds to Member as specified by the Emperor and based on the domestic product of the Member. It will regulate the operation of interstellar commercial vessels and the production, manufacture, and transportation of antimatter, biotech, nanotech and other hazardous materials, even if such activity is entirely local to the Member state. It will regulate the exploitation of Imperial resources. It will regulate the operation of Imperial Corporations and foreign entities doing business within the Empire.
Section 8. The Ministry of Science is responsible for the surveying and exploration of territories within and beyond the boundaries of the Empire. It has sole authority to contact, protect and evaluate alien Sentient species, though it may request assistance from other Ministries as necessary. It has the authority to interdict any system for scientific or hazardous reasons and may request assistance from the Ministry of Defense as necessary. It may designate any internal system as available for exploitation, subject to the rules of the Ministry of Commerce. It does not have the authority to negotiation or accept treaties or agreements on behalf of the Empire with outside parties.
Section 9. The Ministry of State is responsible for relations between the Empire of Humanity and other states. It is not responsible for first contact or re-contact, but is responsible for the negotiation of treaties and agreements with outside parties. It is responsible for the maintenance of embassies and diplomatic relations with outside parties.
Article III: The Imperial Congress
Section 1. The Imperial Congress is composed of the Representatives of every Member of the Empire of Humanity. Every Member state will have one vote and one voice in the Imperial Congress. The Imperial Congress must convene one session each calendar year on the Imperial capital world of Terra. Each Member state is responsible for the assignment of its Representative and delegation. The Imperial Congress is responsible for determining its own rules of order and internal processes. Unless otherwise specified in this Charter, one-half of the total Membership will constitute a quorum.
Section 2. The Imperial Congress has the right to confirm, appoint and impeach the Emperor as specified in Article II, Sections 1, 2 and 3.
Section 3. A duly appointed Representative of the Imperial Congress, but not the delegation, is subject only to the laws of the Empire and the laws of the Representative’s Member state.
Section 4. The Imperial Congress may impeach a Representative using the impeachment process outlined in Article II, Section 3. If the Emperor does not act against a Member state that commits gross violation of Imperial Law, the Imperial Congress may remove a Member state from the Empire using the impeachment process outlined in Article II, Section 3. A removed Member state will no longer have Membership rights in the Imperial Congress and will not count against quorum requirements.
Article IV: The Rights of the Members and the People of the Empire
Section 1. Member states of the Empire retain rights to governor their internal affairs, appoint leaders, collect taxes, raise local defense forces, issue titles of nobility and maintain weapons of mass destruction. Leaders of worlds may not assume a title equivalent to Emperor, though King, Prince, President, Caliph and similar titles are acceptable. Local defense forces must remain within the Member state’s borders and may not have interstellar combat capability. Local titles of Nobility have no standing outside the Member system. Only the central government of the Member state may maintain weapons of mass destruction; any other possession is an Imperial felony.
Section 2. Member of the race Homo Nobilis will be considered Imperial Citizens by birth entitled the honorific “Lord” or “Lady”. These racial Nobles are subject to all local laws, though they may request the assistance of the Ministry of Justice as specified in Article II, Section 6. The Emperor has sole authority over Imperial titles. These titles will be restricted to the masculine and feminine forms of Duke, Earl, Count and Baron. These titles are not automatically inherited and must be reconfirmed upon heirs by the Emperor. At the Emperor’s discretion these titles may or may not include a grant or fiefdom, which must also be renewed upon inheritance. Only Homo Nobilis can receive an Imperial Noble title. The Emperor can create, amend or disband orders of Knighthood and can grant the title of Knight to deserving Sapiens, though these titles cannot be renewed upon an individual’s death and do not confer grants or fiefdoms.
Section 3. Individual Sapiens or individuals of Member alien races are citizens or residents of the Member states and subject to all local laws. The Emperor may establish a uniform Citizenship code for Sapiens members of the military, civil service, or residents of Imperial installations where those installations are not subject to Member state law. The Emperor can grant Imperial Membership at will and this citizenship cannot be revoked except through criminal Imperial Law proceedings. Upon completion of thirty years honorable service for an Imperial Ministry, a Sapiens will receive Imperial Citizenship. All Imperial Citizens will have reasonable expectation of privacy from Imperial authority and have the right to trial by a jury of their class peers in Imperial proceedings.
Section 4. Natural Sapiens may not be enslaved or subject to involuntary servitude by the Empire, any Member state or any private entity, except for a limited and non-transferable term of servitude resulting from conviction of serious felonies after due process.
Section 5. Sentient Constructs of biological or mechanical nature may be chattel or emancipated at the discretion of creating or owning organizations, but an Imperial emancipation, once granted, cannot be revoked except though criminal Imperial Law proceedings. Neither the Empire nor another Member state is responsible for the enforcement of any Member state’s Construct regulations. A Construct can be granted Imperial Citizenship only by the Emperor’s recommendation.
Article V: Amendments and Limitations
Section 1. Amendments to this Charter must be proposed by the Emperor and approved by a two-thirds vote of the entire Membership of the Imperial Congress.
Section 2. Rights not specified in this charter revert to the authority of the Member states of the Empire of Humanity.
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