|Category: Capitalist Paradise|
Regional Influence: Ambassador
Location: Federation of Conservative Nations
The Head of the Monarchy, though he does not receive an official salary from the state, has most expenses paid by the state and does not have to pay taxes. Gagium's Monarchy resides in Laurillac Palace in Laurillac, Gagium, which includes 40 bedrooms, a bowling alley, movie theater, 20 bathrooms, 8 lounges, a dining hall, outdoor pool, and three helicopter landing pads. In 1993, the Palace's stable facilities dating back to the 1700s were removed and replaced with a garden.
The Monarchy, though being restricted to a ceremonial role of having to approve bills and attend certain government meetings, is still regarded as the top of the social hierarchy of Gagium, with most nobles remaining in close contact with the King or members of the Monarchy to gain their favor. It is rumored that lower members of the Monarchy have discretely received donations from other nobles or politicians in exchange for certain 'favors', but a 2015 investigation by the National Assembly was unable to prove this - The investigation itself, however, has been unable to conclude much. The Monarchy and King Rodier reportedly hold significant influence over much of the nobility, of which few have publicly announced policies that have gone against the King's will.
In popular culture, the King and the Monarchy is held to a somewhat high esteem, though support for the Monarchy has reportedly been on a downward trend for some years now. The Head of the Monarchy is referred to as "Your Majesty". The full title of King Arsène Rodier is, "King of the United Commonwealths, Marches, Free Cities, and Territories of Gagium, Lord Protector of the March of Holiness, Margrave of New Cantone, Protector of the Free City of Chatrois, Count of Naumfeld, Holliston, Valun, Burly Lane, Buckingter, Sérénité, Battenkins, and Portnon, His Majesty Arsène Rodier."
Nobility - Directly below the Monarchy is the Nobility, encompassing a vast number of businessmen, corporate executives, military officers, offspring of nobles, and those who have contributed to society enough to be rewarded titles of nobility by their local government or the King himself. The heads of several Commonwealths and Marches are nobility, often holding the titles of Margrave/Marquess. These titles are only available through being born into a noble family or through an act bearing the approval of both the National Assembly and Monarchy - Titles such as these are not able to be purchased. The offspring of a Margrave often does not receive any title until the passing of the head of their noble family (or their abdication). Margraves usually hold direct control of their Commonwealth of March's Army Guard and ceremonial control of other local militias operating in their territory, and are seen as the superior to other nobles who own land in their territories. Throughout the early years of the nation, Margraves often waged war with disobedient noble families or other Margraves, though this practice has been outlawed since the National Unity Act of 1923.
Below a Margrave or Duke is a Count/Countess or, in some southern commonwealths, a Châtelain/Châtelaine. These titles often are gained through blood, appointment by a Margrave, appointment by the Monarchy (Without the consent of the National Assembly required), or through purchasing the title from someone who currently holds the position - This strips the noble status of the previous noble family who held the position, however. Some poorer nobles have recently resorted to selling their titles to the wealthy. Counts and Châtelains hold typically ceremonial control over a small militia force and law enforcement, though some local laws have granted them significantly more power over these forces. Châtelain Robert Fordhunter, a noble in the Commonwealth of Farlon, has made news in the past for arming his militia with surplus main battle tanks and military-esque uniforms.
Lower titles of nobility include: Viscount, a non-hereditary title granted by a Magrave or local government, usually to military officers and other recognized servicemen; Thane, a hereditary title that can also be sold in which the holder typically rules over a rural area within a County; Knight, a title granted for service in the Armed Forces, a local Army Guard, or a recognized militia; And, finally, Lord/Lady, non-hereditary titles that are sold by a federally-regulated organization.
Though not all members of the House of Lords were nobles before they became members of the lawmaking body, all members of the House are ceremonially granted the the title Lord/Lady for their duration in the legislature and after. As another side note, the wealthy business leaders and CEOs technically are of their own social class, though because the vast majority of them hold various noble titles they are lumped in with the nobility.
Military - Below the nobility is the military, more specifically the junior officers and enlisted personnel (As most higher ranking officers hold noble titles, commonly that of Viscount, Knight, or Count). Though these servicemen aren't nobles and are hardly wealthy, soldiers are held to a high esteem in common society for their service to their country and role in keeping the nation safe. Though observers have noted a decrease in overall civilian respect to the armed forces and enlisted personnel, the military is still held to a high regard in general. Air force personnel and marines are typically held to a higher esteem, while army and navy personnel rank in the middle and Shore Guard ranks last in overall prestige. However, a recent study has been conducted that shows that servicemen are more likely to get accepted into universities or job positions than others who are similarly qualified.
Civilian - Ordinary civilians. Law enforcement and emergency response personnel, white collar and blue collar workers, and those in the service industry fall under this category. All (citizen) civilians are endowed the basic rights of every Gagiumish citizen, one can either apply to become a citizen or automatically gain it for being born in Gagium and living there for the majority of the duration of their childhood. All civilians have to be paid 'fairly and justly' for any labor they provide, and all are entitled to basic due process rights. As a result of increasingly liberal policies being enacted by the government, the distinguishment between regular civilians and lower nobility has muddied in recent decades.
Serfs - Serfs are civilians who have signed a legal contract with a business owner or other person to work for them without pay for a certain amount of time - However, forcibly compelling a civilian to sign on to becoming a serf (Or taking advantage of a mentally disabled person to force them to sign a contract they do not understand) is strictly forbidden and legal. It is legally mandated that a serf must be provided with accommodations and food in exchange for their labor, and serfs are most commonly found in the manufacturing, agricultural, and retail industries. Though certain punishments remain illegal, a vast number of serfs still undergo corporal punishment should they 'step out of line'. Government agencies and certain government-sponsored organizations and corporations are barred from practicing serfdom, and the practice of serfdom is outlawed in eight commonwealths.