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matchalatte

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About matchalatte

  • Birthday April 30

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  • Favorite Fire Emblem Game
    Thracia 776

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    Nohr

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  1. @Tenzen12 We are now entering the finer and finer area of discussion that are perhaps further away from in-game materials. But since you brought up a number of interest points, I will give it a go anyway. 1. Well according to the game (BE ending), she eventually had enough time to achieve a systemic reform so what you have here is a fan-theory. 2. Her childhood trauma is a major psychological motive for her conquest/revolution but that is just one interpretation pushed in BL route. In other routes, she expressed other valid concerns such as threat of TWSITD and the illegitimacy of the Church (built on a heap of lies). Your argument is purely Freudian in the sense that all her political actions are reduced to childhood trauma. But while a Freudian reading is useful for understanding her inner motive, it cannot possibly lead to any evaluation about Edelgard being a conqueror/political leader. Quite opposite to your claim, what you said is exactly the interpretation of rationality in modern day choice/decision/game theory: "using calculaing logic for goals she set base on emotions". Rationality is never about goals (preference of outcomes based on psychology/culture/emotion that can be represented by objective functions) but how such goal is achieved (expected utility maximization or minmaxing). Put in simple terms, being rational means you choose the best option for achieving your goal, whatever that is. Unless we use some outlandish definition of rationality, you are in fact agreeing that Edelgard is paragon of a rational decision maker. You are using a rather rigid defintion of a ruler. By a ruler, I mean a de facto ruler instead of a de jure ruler. For instance, during the cold war, Honecker might be de jure ruler/leader of Eastern Germany but the de facto ruler is Gorbachev, since Eastern Germany is a vassal state of the USSR. Honecker cannot issue order to shot the protester or refugees during the fall of the Berlin wall because Gorbachev phoned him not to. Since you mentioned the Catholic Church, I must add first the power of the church fluctuate throughout medieval times. Judging by the fact that Rhea has her own big army (and own land), controls knowledge, can order kingdom to wage war against the empire, and can execute Edelgard with impunity, the Church of Seiros rivals the Catholic Church at its prime as the de facto ruler of Europe because the Church has power far superior than the kings and queens and its relation to the kings and queens is parallel to the relation between kings and their lords. Of course there is, that is to put her on trial, which is the only reasonable thing to do as the moral authority of Fodlan. These are completely different scenarios. NATO is not a form of government above the states and nations but rather a military alliance. Neither Israel nor Palestine, neither US nor China would possibly surrender even a tiny fraction of sovereignty to NATO, which is a military alliance that was design for the containment of the Soviet Union, which supposedly has nothing to with the Middle East or Asian Pacific. I think what you meant is the UN, which suppose to act as a sort of world government but it is failing precisely because no independent states would be willing to surrender their sovereignty for world peace. To think NATO could interfere with either China or the US's internal affairs is ridiculous (forgive me for using such a strong word). Even in a military conflict, NATO is not a third party mediator because again, it's a bunch of European countries that are US's allies led by the US. I would also expect either UN or the NATO to diligently follow international treaties and conventions but certainly not Rhea, who has the power to do whatever she wants without any concerns about any rules. And apparently Rhea can just order around the kings and queens (emperor and empress) like they are school kids for military/political purposes. How can she act as a third-party mediator like what you have suggested? Suppose, for the sake of argument, Rhea is simply a mediator for the peace of Fodlan and does not meddle with nations' internal affairs. Then she has absolutely no right to withhold information about TWSITD from the nobles and commons which is crucial for the security of all nations in Fodlan. Following your logic, this is like NATO leaders withholding information about an alien invasion from its member countries. How can this ever be justified? The BESF members are legitimate heirs of major houses in the political scene and play key roles in the war effort as well as making personal sacrifices for taking political stands (Hubert and Ferdinand) and possibly relevant for Fodlan's foreign relations (Petra will be the queen of Brigid). And they are the only in-game evidence about Edelgard's charisma and as far as I know all of them are positive. I hope you are not making argument for argument's sake. In addition to what I have mentioned above, Edelgard is the only one who adopts a diplomatic stance with TWSITD. She is also the only leader that takes initiative and dictates the situation in Fodlan. Maybe there is something wrong with me, but I simply don't see anyone who has seriously played the game multiple times could view El as an immature, uncharismatic, or like many have said, stupid and crazy, unless you are an avid fan of FE:IF characters.
  2. I agree to a degree, ultimately you are the judge of that. At the same time, you could apply this argument to almost every conqueror/nation-unifier throughout history, many of them are enshrined and lauded for their military deeds (to name a few, Alexander the great, Cyrus the great, Napoleon, the first Emperor of China, Tokugawa). I am merely pointing out perspectives that many players seem to completely miss. Killing bandits in every FE game is framed as the outcome of militaristic combats (using militaristic term such as rout the enemy). For instance, it is plainly obvious an ally soldier can kill any Nazi German solider in combat without going to court. And of course FE like most other games, still glorifies wars and violence by dehumanizing bandits as killing targets. But killing no combatants requires a lot more to justify, especially when it is done in public. In addition, the western church members are the Church's own fellow-men and Rhea is not at war (or in immediate danger) with the western church, so there is no urgency for a summary execution without at least given them a chance to defend themselves. Not to mention the profound implications on people's morals and respect for law and order when a ruler can just execute her subject without any legal basis. Such action is mostly found in the worst authoritarian regimes. The game is also intentionally casting doubt by explicitly showing Seteth questioning her rash decision and the fear shown in those church members (they are apparently not expecting such a swift and cruel punishment). The fact TWSITD manipulated the western church makes such action looks even worse because 1. there is a larger plot going on so executing these heretics before a thorough investigation seem impulsive and shady 2. if indeed the church members are being manipulated then they become less responsible for their action (or not responsible at all if say hypothetically their family members are held hostage or they are mistakenly implicated). The fact is that even if they are later exonerated, they are dead. Personally, I found that through these discussions many seem to have a double standard when judging these characters. If you want to effectively apply moral judgement on political characters, at least spend some time on what mankind have already known about the idea of justice (rights, laws, the ideal government etc).
  3. I hope you do understand what an "extremist" means (since you mentioned that you are little rusty with English) before you proudly announcing it. I wouldn't consider Edelgard as an extremist even in the BL route (in which she comes pretty close). Her ideals are not so far off from the mainstream (Claude admitted that their end goal is similar) since it is depicted in the game that nobles hate the crest too. I can't imagine what you said is helpful in any way for constructive discussions about this game. Your points are fair, but propensity to inflame the conversation is not.
  4. Of course it is justified in the sense that a larger scale war with higher (human) cost could be prevented. A decapitation-like strike has long been (and still is) a viable strategy in the art of war. Rule of law is not a modern concept and it has existed since Babylon along with every major civilization. Players are also entitled to apply modern ethics and moral standards to fantasy characters despite that some of them rely on modern institutions (which is precisely why many players view El as a complete villain).
  5. @Tenzen12 I thank you for your serious and well meaning response. I personally think some of your claims lack warrants or supporting arguments. I have already written perhaps way too much about the reasoning and motives behind Edelgard's choices and showed substantial amount of evidences in the game to tie up the reading. To say that all her action are driven by emotion is an unfair overstatement. Even a superficial reading of Edelgard would conclude that she is not only composed but calculating or even Machiavellian, in constrast with other major characters. I happen to know a thing or two about the subject of rationality. In theory of choice or game theory, rationality implies that decision maker always take the action/strategy in order to optimize his/her utility/objective, i.e, a rational decision maker always make the best choice for him/herself. You can be consistently wrong or consistently emotional or consistently confused and that does not make you rational (unless we go deeper into theory). Being emotional is definitely not a sign of rational decision making. If so, then Rhea has no right to order people to kill Edelgard, the legitimate ruler the empire which has its own sovereignty. I know this is a fantasy, but this is fantasy with some pretty meaty political themes and I still expect common sense (does anyone ever have the right to order people to kill a foreign leader?) to work just like every other player. You are contradicting yourself with the previous point: if Rhea is not the de facto ruler of Fodlan, then how can she be responsible for the peace of Fodlan? Also North Korea has been peaceful since the ceasefire, and if you travel to Pyongyang everything looks great. But surely it doesn't mean Kim is a good ruler? While this comparison is extreme, I did illustrate why the Church of Seiros has many (bad) features of an authoritarian regime. You have to try a better argument. Don't forget that her followers are the privileged class just like the party members of Pyongyang. I brought this up because in BL route Edelgard actually mentioned another aspect of her goal, which is to improve the economic/social condition of the common folks. Another contradicting fact is the amount of bandits, thieves, rebellions and dissents presented in the game all over the place. If anything, Rhea is actually facing a political crisis in Fodlan (she clearly failed to contain the threat of TWSITD during those hundreds of peaceful years) But these claims are completely unfounded. In fact, if you paid attention to Edelgard's support conversation, she has intimate and sincere relations with almost everyone in the Black Eagle group. Dorothea is a confidant and both Ferdinand and Petra look up to her as a role model. In particular, Hubie has confessed more than one time he is willing to sacrifice everything for her. You can't just throw an allegation like that. At least loosely show me events, texts, or conversations in the game that support this interpretation. There is no evidence at all suggesting Edelgard did not make choice independently or out of her own will in BE, GD, and BL routes. OK I feel like we are going in circles and I am repeating a lot. If you think Rhea > Edelgard period, you are definitely entitled to that opinion and I am happy for you.
  6. There is no evidence for that as far as I am concerned, but what you said could be true. You could also relate this to how El's endgame is also about destroying TWISTD in GD route, I can imagine several other more plausible explanations (more because torture serves no purpose and nothing indicates El enjoys torturing, judging from her past, she might be opposing to torturing) 1. As a bargaining chip if her war is at an disadvantage 2. As an anti missile defense 3. As a source of intel for fighting against TWISTD 4. Potentially forming some sort of coalition government if Fodlan is hard to control without the faith These are all plausible speculations but my point is that holding Rhea as hostage serve many purposes even if you view El as purely Machiavellian, whereas Rhea's decision was entirely driven by emotions and serve very little purpose (not to mention that it is a wrong thing to do, which several people here seem to have trouble grasping). Again, I have never said Edelgard is a better ruler than Rhea but simply refuting the idea that Rhea is good ruler (hence El is bad) without inspecting her decisions presented in the game.
  7. And you will be the judge. That's exactly why El's underhanded dealings were justified from a strategic perspective, precisely because she did them to achieve something. If you are a moralist, then end does not justify the means. If you are a realist, then end does justify the means. But El is not completely cold and efficient in routes other than BL.
  8. Sure. If anything goes in a fantasy setting, there would be no point discussing these details further. I have no problem with that.
  9. I have already explained why it is bad for Rhea (the establishment) to disregard the rule of law and why it is not so bad (and natural) for Edelgard (the revolutionist) to not follow the law that she is revolting against. And you still don't seem to understand my point, which is the importance of some kind of due process. As the ruler during peaceful time, you should only execute people after a proper trial (fair or not). A summary execution is terrible and is often associated with terriorist/guerrilla groups. Even Facist states respect the rule of (bad) law (in the worst case, El is a facist, which is suggested by the aesthetics).
  10. I am willing to following your line of reasoning and say, yes, killing her immediately would be correct thing to do (forget the due process it's nonsense in fantasy) However, this compares unfavorably with how El treats Rhea in GD route, in which she treats Rhea as more of a hostage.
  11. It's just an expression. The meaning I am trying to convey here is you don't see the bases for her decisions. They seem to be driven by emotions or intuitions. Killing someone as a moral authority or as a ruler is not minor matter. I could question what exactly are those poor souls' crime? Did she gathered all the evidences and convince other church members that this is just? Is the punishment by death absolutely necessary? Well it could be lousy writing (people are saying that this is an anime game after all, as if that means bad writing is expected), but if you see how the Western Church member reacted with horror and surprise, or how Seteth thought that this is ill-advised, then clearly the writer are making you questioning. Don't forget, those church member are their fellow men! Her action is even worse when she deals with El's betrayal. We can certainly understand her rage but ordering Byleth to kill her on the spot? Not to mention it is completely unnecessary (she can put her in jail), it seems that she doesn't even consider the repercussions within Fodlan or entertain the possibility that a full investigation could yield intels about empire/TWSITD, or possibly a bigger plot against her.
  12. Good point. But I don't think any sensible ruler can just kill people on a whim (unless he/she is a dictator in the worst sense). Even 4000 years ago we see Babylon having rule of law (Code of Hammurabi). It doesn't mean that she has to follow it. But at least she should respect it to set an example for her people? I am not a Rhea hater. Rhea is a fine manakete 😉. I am just point out that people seem to overlook.
  13. Well one detail during the Western Church side quest is the the item you get from the student "Dissident Intel". Of course they held different view, that's why they are involved with the plot in the first place. My argument has always been that Rhea seem to execute people without any trial or due process. And apparently she can just order people to kill legal heir of the Empire such as Edelgard on the spot, without arresting/investigation/legal basis or anything at all. Yes it could be lazy writing (we don't know) but if you are still unable to see what's wrong with it, then I urge you to learn a bit about how the government works (I hate to be patronizing, maybe I am the crazy one here). Death sentence implies that it is punishment warranted by law, not punishment by whim. I am not going to explain the difference a third time. And I have already commented on hypothetical situations: El can be a good or bad ruler after her victory. Outside the ending narration, anything goes. You can decide for yourself.
  14. I think you have abused the concept of "selfishness". Having self integrity or believing in an ideal is not equivalent to being selfish. Being selfish means you put your personal interest above the the interest of others. Having self integrity means you are true to yourself, i.e., act according to your own will not others (whether selfish or selfless). Having an ideal often time means you are willing to sacrifice your self interest in order to realize/act according to the ideal (public interest, may be non-consensual). Self interests are benefits and gains related with individual identity, i.e. wealth, fame, glory, or even integrity or moral superiority. Making the world a better place may be a personal goal, but is it not a selfish goal. It is selfish to seek personal gratification in the name of making the world a better place. The goal itself is objective in the sense of being based on social consensus.
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