Prime Minister Aesop Korinna was having a very bad day. Glaucia was ranting again.
“… And now we are expected to cover the costs of the other races for their stupid illnesses! When will it end?”
There was an uneasy cheer among the many ministers and members of parliament. This was a weekly joint session where both the Ministry and the MoP would discuss anything and everything. The issue on everyone’s mind today though was a bit bigger than usual.
“We need to leave the Maza!” Glaucia shouted. The cheer though was much smaller this time. Still, some Cassids were cheering. They were swallowing everything Glaucia said.
Aesop sighed. This issue always came up every couple of years, but it was always the same. Now though, with the aftermath of the Feralheart Plague falling mostly on the shoulders of the Cassids, people were getting agitated. The reports had been trickling in and although the Cassid government wasn’t to blame, the cause was a rogue, formerly Cassid-goverment-sanctioned laboratory.
Each report had been more and more damning, but the most damning one came from the Lanex, who were supposedly neutral in the whole matter. Hundreds of various things that not just the Cassids had done wrong, but every race had done wrong. But mostly the Cassids.
Problem was, Cassids hated being in the wrong. People like Glaucia, wanted to prove they weren’t at fault. Unfortunately, she was one of the Cassid representatives in the Maza.
“We have been over this issue so many times. So. Many. Times!” Vinicius, the minister of Foreign Affairs, sighed. “And every time, we have decided that it is better to remain within the Maza…”
“Why though?” Glaucia shouted. She hadn’t been a representative for long and she’d hated it. “We are currently paying money to bail out the Banikans! Why are we giving our natural predators money?”
“The Cassid government hasn’t given any money to the Banikans. Their small financial hiccup was covered by the Rethans and the Thanatians…” Lysistrata, the Minister for External Economic, tutted. He knew that because he had overseen the whole deal. It was his job to deal with any financial issue involving other races.
“What about trade? Most of our trade is exports!”
Lysistrata was beginning to get annoyed. “Our imports and exports with other races are mostly equal, and we import a HUGE amount of products for our external worlds. The Maza’s open trade deals mean we can get fair prices.”
Glaucia laughed. “Fair prices? Hah! We pay extra to import Thanatian minerals!”
“We haven’t had to pay duty on Thanatian minerals for three hundred years… Are you going to complain about anything legitimate?” Lysistrata snapped. “You keep on whinging about the Maza yet bring up no valid reasons!”
“How about immigration?” Nigelius Ionsanius, the MoP for the Northern Territories. “Immigration from other races has been increasing over the last few decades. Not in my area, of course not. But I can imagine what it’s like for those not on our Homeworld.”
Glaucia’s eyes lit up. “Yes! Immigration! We can’t have Banikan slouches taking benefits from Cassids who pay their taxes! And making use of our tax havens.”
“We have tax havens?” one of the lower MoPs could be heard muttering.
“Apparently… I suppose compared to the Rethans at least…” another one whispered.
A small wave of quite conversation splashed across the chamber. Some did suddenly seem worried about immigration, but most of the Cassids saw it as a non issue. Helena Verginia, the Minister of Home Affairs, was not amused by the MoPs’ comments.
“Of course we’re going to have higher immigration than other races, because we have a superb society and others look up to us. Our immigration levels though are good. Especially compared to the soaring Rethan immigration levels. Cassids also immigrate to other areas with no problems.”
Horatius Horatian, the Minister of Defence, added his own thoughts. “Immigrants from other races have not caused us any harm outside of the damage done by the Feralheart Plague.”
“There would have been no damage done to us if we didn’t have open borders!” Govius Michaelius, another MoP, abruptly shouted.
“There would have been no damage done if we didn’t have a rogue lab developing nasty illnesses!” a third MoP interrupted.
Glaucia though wasn’t buying any of it or listening to any logic. “We should let the people decide! Let them vote!”
Aesop’s eyes widened. “Glaucia, are you suggesting that we give a huge, world-changing decision to the common Cassid?”
Glaucia grinned. “Yes.”
“Fine…” Aesop growled, wanting this stupid conversation to end so they could move on to more relevant issues. “We shall vote tomorrow on whether to have a referendum or not. Now, let us discuss how we will deal with the fallout of this plague…”