[LMB] Ezar (no talk about religion here, honest)

Karen Hunt huntkc at gmail.com
Mon Sep 12 12:26:01 BST 2011

[snip of stuff I'm mostly in agreement with]

> But this quality often has little to do with how... I'll say how much
> damage they do. How much suffering they cause. You don't get people
> saying they like and admire Tien. Did he cause one tenth, one
> hundredth, even one thousandth the utterly needless human suffering
> Ezar did? No.
> But big crimes are -romantic-, somehow.

I'd say it's a good deal more complex than that.  Tien didn't cause
huge suffering because his place in life didn't offer the opportunity.
 If he'd been in a position of real power (say by being the heir of an
emperor, for example), he'd have caused quite a bit of it.  His
incompetence might have saved him from drastically awful badness, but
it'd have produced other troubles in its place.

Ezar was vile, and I don't like him much at all. He got himself into
his troubles on his own (though he was helped by being surrounded by a
thoroughly anarchic world that he'd gotten put in charge of).  But I
will grant that his final acts were to own up to and clean up his
mistakes as much as he could.  I seriously doubt Tien would have done
anything of the sort.

I don't much care for his methods:  Hey, let's sic a bloodthirsty
military on an unsuspecting other planet that didn't ever do anything
to harm us!  And then let's sic a mob of peasants on the Ministry of
Information and get a bunch of them killed, too!

I will grant him, though, that it worked.  And I'm not sure other
choices would have worked better.

I remember a counsellor of mine talking with me about my father,
About how he'd come from such a messed up background that even being
functional was pretty impressive.  He'd sunk down under the weight in
the end (to alcohol and other such problems), but he did manage to buy
for me and my sisters a better future than he'd been given.  It made
for an interesting counter-view of him.

I will never say "Ezar was a good man." I will agree that his final
acts redeemed the worst of his sins, though they encompassed enough
other sins that I cringe at his methods.

Karen Hunt

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