Lord of Krungh

The Lord of Krungh (Shinasthana: 洚侯, krungh-go; Jan. 15, 1817 – Aug. 2, 1909) was a Themiclesian politician, military officer, and civil servant. Born to the aristocratic lineage of the lords of Krungh, he entered the civil service 1838 and governed four counties and two prefectures then sat in the House of Commons as Lord Gwrjang-goi for 13 years. He first became a minister in 1883 under the Lord of M′i and rose to become prime minister after the Lord of Snul-lang died in 1894. Winning the 1897 and 1904 general elections, he governed Themiclesia for 15 years and 110 days until his death in 1909, becoming the longest-serving and oldest prime minister in modern history. As prime minister, he was a devoted practitioner of the New Policy of the Conservative Party, balancing rural aristocratic privilege and social policies in industrial areas. His permiership is remembered for them and extension of the franchise to all adults over 25, irrespective of sex but also widespread electoral bribery, political patronage, and corruption.

Career

Prime minister

The New Policy was meant to benefit and empower the agrarian aristocracy and smaller landholders in the countryside. The party under Krungh enacted a range of socially- and economically-progressive policies that effectively formed a coalition between the rural aristocracy and the urban poor, in order to fight the Liberals in the House of Commons. As the party courted votes in cities by progressive policies, it maintained power in the countryside through a massive patronage (for aristocrats and gentry) and bribery (for commoners) scheme. While the policy was meant to perpetuate the superiority of the privileged class, Krungh re-iterated that he did not condone excessive rents, instead encouraging collusion to prevent competitiven rent reductions. The government also strongly opposed land and income tax on aristocrats, since this would increase operating costs. To fund social programs, Krungh enacted land taxes on urban and industrial land and a progressive income tax on income by non-aristocrats and molested Liberal patronage schemes that ran through the industrial elite. Due to his highly prejudicial policies, his premiership was known as the Great Darkness amongst the middle class.

Relation to other politicians

Lord M′reng

The Lord of Krungh was known to have a poor relationship with Trjuk Krjên-magh, Lord M′reng. The two knew each other since childhood. While Krungh started a political career in his early 20s, Trjuk preferred an academic one, studying mathematics. When Trjuk entered politics in his 40s, he used the influence of his brother, the Lord of Sngrjar-k.rên, to skip several rungs in the Conservative Party's hierarchy and briefly outranked Krungh. In the several offices he pursued, he preferred to stay in the capital city and appear at meals rather than supervising his subordinats in the country. Krungh, anxious to advance the New Policy as the accepted dogma of his generation, admonished Trjuk over his scandalous conduct, and the two fell out.

In 1861, Trjuk returned to academia and demanded a new office in 1865. Exasperated with Trjuk's social activities, he combined with the administration secretary to appoint Trjuk a Marines colonel, stationed on the Isle of Liang, days by ship away from the capital city. Liang had a lethal reputation, as the Camians threatened to take the island and "slaughter every Themiclesian on it." Trjuk loitered in Kien-k'ang for months, refusing to meet his men. When he arrived, he accidentally discharged a pistol he found in a desk, killing his subordinate. The Liberal press caricatured Lord M′reng and Krungh along with him, politically injuring the latter. Krungh came out on the press to criticize M′reng as an ivory-tower academic with no life experience.

M′reng's surrender in 1867 did the New Conservatives no favours. The Liberals wanted to impeach M′reng, but the Conservative-leaning House of Lords found him innocent, as the surrender was a tactically-sound decision made with other officers' advice. He was then promoted as Captain-general of Marines, which effectively ended his political career. This caused M′reng much misery and provoked polemics against Krungh within the Party.

Lord of M′i

While Krungh's relationship with M′reng was often a subject of humour even during their lifetimes, that with the Lord of M′i is usually considered to have been far more critical to the development of political institutions in later decades. The treaty following the Battle of Liang-la prohibited Themiclesia from tariffing Camian and Maverican foods. The elimination of tariff caused the Themiclesian agricultural sector to implode, and with it many peers' income and ability to hold Commons seats in their pockets. 39 peers crossed the floor after a landslide victory in the Commons, giving the Liberals almost carte blanche to govern. The Conservative Party was regarded as basically dead in the early 1870s, and M′i took on the unenviable duty of rebuilding the party from tatters. Krungh remained with the party realizing that he would become the de facto Opposition leader in the Commons, and in this role he co-operated with M′i.

Between 1869 and 1875, Krungh came to national prominence as a detractor of Liberal policies. He captained many newspaper intrigues into the problems of Liberal governance that became more visible into the 1870s, namely those associated with urbanization, unlimited capitalism, free trade, and industrialization. During the general election of 1872, the Liberals proved unshakable at the polls. Krungh's investigations proved invaluable to Conservative MPs in 1872, many elected on a very thin margin and reliant on votes cast for highly-specific issues. For this, Krungh gained M′i's trust as his resourceful partner, while M′i focused his energies on assisting Conservative peers regain stable incomes through various means. In 1874, most Conservative MPs endorsed Krungh as the party leader in the chamber.

However, as the political tide appeared to start turning, Krungh's father suddenly died of a stroke on Nov. 4, 1875. As he inherited his father's title and seat, the Liberals quickly expelled him from the chamber. Through his experience in directing the opposition in the lower house, he quickly developed misgivings for M′i's handling of affairs in the upper house.

Reception

The Lord of Krungh remains a divisive figure in Themiclesia today. On the one hand, he pioneered the progressive income tax and enacted a range of anti-discrimination, labour-protection, child-protection, union-protection, and welfare laws that are cherished in Themiclesia today, albeit mainly to court the urban working class and preserve the rural interests of the upper class. On the other hand, he exempted the aristocracy from most forms of taxation, and his severely prejudiced policies are still criticized in Liberal circles as unstatesmanlike and anti-egaltarian. His most influential legacy, however, was the extension of the franchise to all citizens above the age of 25, irrespective of sex, which forced policy revisions by Liberal and Conservative alike and changed the political landscape irrevocably.

He is rated as the second best prime minister in the 19th and 20th centuries, behind the Lord of Gar-lang (fl. 1845 – 1859).

Timeline

Personal

  • 1817: born.
  • 1839: Deputy Secretary to the Magistrate of Mrjan-lan County.
  • 1841: Treasurer of Sjing-brjêng County.
  • 1845: Magistrate of Troh-mjei County.
  • 1848: Magistrate of Bjeng County.
  • 1849: Director of Poor Relief in Tsjing-Brjêng Prefecture.
  • 1850: Colonel of Cavalry Militia in Ngrêk Prefecture.
  • 1851: Magistrate of Krong-nêng County, Lord Gwrjang-goi.
  • 1854: Exchequer of Dzar-mlêng Prefecture.
  • 1859: Magistrate of Dzar-mlêng Prefecture.
  • 1861: MP for Hwal-lang County.
  • 1871: Lord of Krungh (death of father, 3rd Lord of Krungh)
  • 1883: Minister of Munitions.
  • 1885: Minister of Revenues.
  • 1886: Secretary of State for War.
  • 1889: Magistrate of Pjang-nubh Prefecture.
  • 1891: Secretary of State for Administration.
  • 1894: Prime Minister.
  • 1909: death, aged 92.

Policy

  • 1892: Progressive income tax on commoners.
  • 1896: Stamp duty on daily publications.
  • 1898: Industrial and urban residential land tax.
  • 1899: Civic education, providing free books and food for children up to the age of 12.
  • 1900: Maximum working hours established at 14 hours per day and 80 per week, for adults, and 10 hours and 54 hours respectively, for children under 14.
  • 1900: Factory and business owners may not prevent worker assemblies outside of their property or dismiss workers for the same.
  • 1901: Factories must provide at least one work-free day per month.
  • 1901: Factory owners responsible for mechanical failures that result in injuries and death.
  • 1904: Public Drilling Act (forbids large public assemblies under leadership, used to suppress public union meetings) abolished.
  • 1904: Representation of the People Act, extending franchise to all citizens aged 25 and above, irrespective of sex.
  • 1906: Union of Unions established uner government patronage.
  • 1906: Public Employment Register established, all advertisements for labour to be public to reduce "unemployment by ignorance".

Snul-lang-Krungh ministry

Cabinet ministers in bold.

Position Holder
Tyrannian Shinasthana
Prime Minister 尚書令 The Lord of Snur-lang (to 1894)
The Lord of Krungh (from 1894)
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs 主客尚書 The Lord of K′ei-′rjem
Deputy Prime Minister
Secretary of State for Education
右僕射祠部尚書 The Lord of Mrjing
Secretary of State for Appropriations 度支尚書 Lord Lang-djeng
Secretary of State for War 十七兵尚書 Lord Gwigh-njing
Secretary of State for the Navy 航尚書 The Lord of Pek-′al
Secretary of State for Home Affairs 民部尚書 Lord Kjalh-djeng
Secretary of State for Administration 吏部尚書 Lord Ran-prep
Secretary of State for Public Works 起部尚書 Lord N′er-n′ubh
Under-Secretary of State for Railways 鐵路郎 Lord Kakw
Under-Secretary of State for Revenues 內郎 Lord Ga-lang
Comptroller of Manufactories 將作少府 Lord Mjap
Under-Secretary of State for Munitions 寺工室郎 Lord Ta
Under-Secretary of State for Patronage 廕部郎 Lord Mrai-gigh
Under-Secretary of State for Militias 中外兵郎
Under-Secretary of State for Territorial Forces 別兵郎
Under-Secretary of State for War Departments 諸兵曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Treasury 金部倉部郎
Under-Secretary of State for Local Affairs 二千石曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Strategy 虞曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Census 左民曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Census 右民曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Police 都官曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Hemithea and Meridia 左主客郎
Under-Secretary of State for Casaterra 右主客郎
Under-Secretary of State for Assessments 比部曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Highways 駕部郎
Under-Secretary of State for Lakes and Fisheries 水部郎
Under-Secretary of State for Surveys 左田部郎
Under-Secretary of State for Surveys 右田部郎
Under-Secretary of State for Ceremonies 儀曹郎
Under-Secretary of State for Unions 工會郎 Lord Begh
Under-Secretary of State for Shipbuilding 章部郎 Lord Lra-lang
Under-Secretary of State for Poor Relief 平準郎 Lord Krek-lang
Chancellor of Academia Shinasthana 大學監 The Lord of Dar
Under-Secretary of State for Police 良人郎 Lord Ljuk-lang
Under-Secretary of State for Education 祠部郎 Lord Tjup
Lords in Waiting 侍中 The Lord of Hljunh-lang
The Lord of ′ebh-lang
The Lord of Gah
The Lord of Mrus
Gentlemen in Waiting 給事中 Lord Kjit-mjen
Lord Ngjon-djeng
Lord Mja-′an
Lord Hwjei-ngjarh
Lord Gwrjang-′ar
Chancellor 相邦 The Lord of K′jar
Vice Chancellor 丞相 Lord of Njet-hwer
The Lord of Rjat-lang
Marshal of the Gallery 郎中令 The Lord of Kaw-ngjar
President of Tribunes 御史大夫 Lord Gran-skwjadh
Privy Treasurer 少府 The Lord of ′rup-nem
Leader of the House of Commons 中書僕射 Lord ′jek-nror
Lord Steward of the Palace 殿中監 The Lord of Nja-lang
Marshal of Peers 主爵中尉 The Lord of Nem-neng
Inner Administrator 內史 Lord Sikw-lang
President of the Privy Council 中大夫令 The Lord of Gwrebh-lang
Master of Associated States 屬邦
Marshal of Hên-lang Guards 顯陽衛尉
Marshal of Middle Guards 中衛尉
Marshal of Gwreng-hljunh Guards 宏訓衛尉
Marshal of Gweng-ngjarh Guards 弘義衛尉
Marshal of Pek Guards 北宮衛尉
Capital Marshal 中尉
Comptroller of Embassies 典客
Master of the Horse 太僕
Comptroller of the Ancestry 宗正
Comptroller of Ceremonies 奉常

See also