============================ Appeal 1295a ============================
Appeal initiated: 18 May 2001 19:00:24 GMT
Assigned to Steve (panelist): 19 May 2001 20:28:46 GMT
Assigned to Kelly (panelist): 19 May 2001 20:28:46 GMT
Assigned to Wes (panelist): 19 May 2001 20:28:46 GMT
Wes moves to SUSTAIN: 19 May 2001 21:21:18 GMT
Steve moves to REASSIGN: 23 May 2001 02:06:59 GMT
Kelly moves to REASSIGN: 23 May 2001 15:01:11 GMT
Final decision (REASSIGN): 23 May 2001 15:01:11 GMT
Order(s) issued: 24 May 2001 00:50:20 GMT
Gratuitous Arguments by G.:
> 2. The Judge erred in determining that the Orders in question were
> Administrative Orders.
I would like to enter an argument against Taral's second point, although
it seems to have been accepted by others. I would very much appreciate it
if the Appeals Board considered these arguments so as to avoid an
additional CFJ. I address the point: IF Blob's orders are Invalid
Administrative Orders, THEN do they "lapse" into Private Orders?
> Blob explicitly stated, "As Executor of the Bank, ..." in preface to the
Blob, by the above statement, CLEARLY intended these Orders to be
Administrative. Let's, for the moment, accept that Taral and Evantine are
both right about one point: Blob's Orders were invalid as Administrative
Orders, either because the Orders were not part of the Treasuror's duties
or because that class of Orders is specifically regulated. Now, if a
Player attempts an Invalid action (like EXPLICITLY issuing a specific type
of Order that e is not permitted to issue) why does it default into
ANOTHER type of action?
If I am not an Oligarch, and I explicitly attempt to Vote on Ordinanry
Proposal 5000, does it default into a Vote for Democratic Proposal 5001?
No, the vote is discarded. When Razl explicitly attempted to CFJ (1294) on
"these administrative Orders," did Taral allow the CFJ to default into one
about Private Orders? No, e dismissed the case. Likewise, when Blob
*explicitly* issued Administrative Orders, does their invalidity cause
them to become a different action (Private Orders)? Private Orders and
Administrative Orders are TWO DISTINCT ACTIONS defined by the rules, and
are as different as voting on two seperate Proposals.
Kelly's set of Orders in CFJ 1293 were a different case. Kelly did not
*specifically* state the type of Orders e was issuing, and instead left it
for the judge to interpret. However, by the statement "As Executor of the
Bank", Blob CLEARLY intended to issue Administrative Orders. By being so
clear in eir statement, e has taken away the option for any judge to
re-map these orders as being Private. Either the Orders are valid
Administrative Orders, or invalid Administrative Orders: but if they are
invalid Administrative Orders, they do not automatically become Private.
> for two reasons. Firstly, the fact that the Executorship of the Bank
> happens to be a privilege granted to a specific Office (the Treasuror)
> is not sufficient to determine all actions using this privilege to be
> performed in the form of the Officer. Secondly, since the Orders were
> not a "dut[y] of the Office", they do not satisfy the requirement for an
> Administrative Order.
A final point here. I would argue that it is VERY MUCH the duty of the
executor of the Bank to ensure, using all legal means available, that the
Bank's debts are paid. Does any Agoran NOT expect the executor of the
Bank to do this? Or to do it selectively as a privilege? It is very much
in keeping with the spirit of the Banking system, that this is a duty!
The duty of the Notary MAY BE to satisfy debts for which e has charge.
Rule 1908 is open to interpretation. THIS is what must be judged. But
Blob's regulated-by-1599 Orders are not the way to do this. This
willy-nilly issuing of invalid orders is regulation by orders and not
Rules. We have Rule 1509, The Order to Compel, issuable by a *judge* who
finds that officer has failed to do a duty. The appropriate mechanism for
addressing whether Razl has failed is to (1) CFJ on if it is the Notary's
duty to pay the debts--the properly-appointed judge should issue an order
to compel if e agrees. (2) If the judge disagrees, well then silly, it's
the Notary's priviledge to not pay, and if you don't like that, change
Rule 1908 to make it a duty.
Yep, its the hotheaded issuing of Orders that delayed all this, really.
That's good, though.... it's certainly more fun for the judicial system
Gratuitous Arguments by Kelly:
>Blob, by the above statement, CLEARLY intended these Orders to be
What Blob intended is not determinative, however. What matter is what
the Rules require. If the Rules determine that Blob's Orders were
Private, then they are Private.
I have been aware of this issue for some time; and in fact my original
Orders were intended in part to exercise this problem. Unfortunately,
the Judges of the CFJs in question failed to adequately address the
issue of categorizing a given Order, leaving that task up to the Board
Panelist Wes's Arguments:
Due to the expansive nature of this CFJ, it is unreasonable to attempt
to address every possible flaw in the reasoning of each Player who has
submitted Arguments for or against Judge Evantine's conclusion. Since
only one of the individuals calling for an Appeal of this CFJ stated
reasons for it with eir Appeal, we will focus upon those reasons in
our own deliberations. While other flaws may exist, we find Evantine's
Arguments to be quite convincing on all other points.
First, Taral alleges that Judge Evantine erred in failing to presume
Administrative Orders as valid. E references our own Arguments upon
the Appeal of CFJ 1237 where we ruled that for purposes of Rule 101,
the actual issuing of an Order was not particularly regulated by the
With regards to Private Orders, we continue to hold this view.
Administrative Orders, however, are defined as those Orders issued
in the performance of one's duties as an Officer. This, by definition,
restricts the validity of Administrative Orders, effectively regulating
them and rendering the permissibility empowered by Rule 101 irrelevant.
In short, our Arguments in the Appeal of CFJ 1237 does not apply
equally to Administrative Orders.
This brings us to Taral's second point. Specifically, e states that
Judge Evantine also erred in considering Blob's Order to be an
Administrative Order instead of a Private Order. Blob did expend
some effort to indicate that e was issuing those Orders as the Executor
of the Bank. However, "Executor of the Bank" is not an Office, nor is
it the Recordkeepor of a Currency or the Speaker.
However, since Blob is a limited Executor of the Bank due to the holding
of an Office, we believe that all actions performed as the Executor of
the Bank are performed within the auspices of that Office.
Furthermore, we question Taral's extremely narrow definition of "duty".
It is our long-held opinion that one's "duty" is not simply what is
explicitly required of one by the Rules. Indeed, duty cannot be imposed
simply by the threat of adverse consequence. Duty is, rather, a personal
requirement to uphold those principles which one values.
Within Agora, we consider it each Player's duty to obey the Rules. We
also consider it each Player's Duty to show some minor degree of respect
for each other, to answer a new Player's questions on occasion and to
avoid physically battering a Player with whom they disagree (should they
find themselves in physical proximity). Of course, others may disagree.
The definition of duty is a personal thing and likely varies between
*any* two individuals.
It is therefore extremely difficult for us to argue with any particular
statement that any given action is part of one's duty or not. We are
therefore reluctant to Overturn a Judgement on the basis of Evantine's
implicit determination that Blob's actions were part of the duties of
eir Office. Particularly since we also believe that one of Blob's
duties is to attempt to collect on the debts owed to the Bank.
We therefore find that Blob's actions were performed within the auspices
of eir Office and see no reason to Overturn Evantine's Judgement on the
basis that it was not Blob's duty to attempt to issue these Orders.
However, this still results in an Administrative Order, the issuing
of which is regulated by the Rules, which has not been empowered by
the Rules. We therefore agree with Judge Evantine that while Blob may
have been duty bound to attempt this action, the Orders themselves
We therefore move to SUSTAIN Judge Evantine's Judgement of TRUE in
Panelist Steve's Arguments:
In the Appeal of CFJ 1295, I move to overturn Evantine's Judgement and
re-assign the CFJ to a new Judge.
Summary of the Judgement:
I believe that Judge Evantine erred in finding that Blob's Orders were
Administrative; I find that they were Private Orders. As Private Orders,
I find that they were validly executed, for the same reasons given in my
Appeal Judgement in CFJ 1237. The central issue raised by the CFJ is
really whether the Orders were properly made. This question has not yet
been been properly considered, and should be examined by a new Judge.
I seek the concurrance of one or both of my fellow Justices to execute
Appellate Orders vacating Justice Evantine's vacation of Blob's Orders.
If and when I have obtained the assent of a majority of the Board of
Appeals, I will submit the Appellate Orders to the Clerk of the Courts.
This CFJ raises three questions:
1. What was the class of Blob's Orders?
2. Were Blob's Orders validly executed?
3. Were Blob's Orders properly executed?
I'll discuss each question in turn.
1.1 What was the class of Blob's Orders?
Classes of Orders are defined by R1794/4:
(a) Each Order is of one of the following classes:
(1) Judicial: A Judicial Order is an Order executed by a
Player while acting as a Judge.
(2) Appellate: An Appellate Order is an Order executed by a
Board of Appeals.
(3) Administrative: An Administrative Order is an Order
executed by an Officer in the course of performing the
duties of that Office, except when those duties involve
acting as a member of a Board of Appeals.
(4) Legislative: A Legislative Order is an Order executed as
part of the effect of the adoption of a Proposal.
(5) Private: A Private Order is any Order not described above.
Blob's Orders were certainly not Judicial, Appellate or Legislative
Orders. The question is whether or not they were Administrative Orders.
Since each Order by definition belongs to one class only, and since
Private Orders are defined as a 'catch-all' class, we can conclude that
if Blob's Orders were not Administrative Orders, then they were Private
Judge Evantine considered that Blob's Orders must be Administrative
because they were prefaced with the remark "As Executor of the Bank...".
In Evantine's words, "[t]his indicates an intent to issue the Orders in
an Administrative capacity in the course of performing the duties of
However, I find that Blob's intent in executing the Orders is not
relevant to the determination of the class of those Orders. R1794 makes
an Order Administrative if it is "executed by an Officer in the course
of performing the duties of that Office". The only way to establish that
Blob's Orders were Administrative Orders is therefore to show that they
were executed in the course of performing the duties of the Office of
1.2 Official duties
To make that determination, we need to be clear about what Official
duties are. I hold that Official duties are duties imposed on a person
by the Rules, in virtue of that person holding an Office. I note that
this seems to be Judge Evantine's view also. Justice Wes has asserted in
eir Appeal Judgement a different view that there can be Official duties
which do not arise from the Rules. On this view, even if the Rules do
not require em to do so, the Treasuror might be honour-bound, as
Treasuror, to recover debts from the Bank's debtors; if so, this would
count as an Official duty. However, I explicitly and emphatically reject
this view. Official positions exist only insofar as they are created by
the Rules. To me, it makes no sense to look beyond the Rules to answer
the question of what Official duties are.
It's also important to distinguish between Official duties and
prerogatives. Blob's Orders were issued in an attempt to force Notary
Razl to satisfy tax debts owed by three ex-Players, of whom Razl was the
Limited Executor (R1908). R1599 permits the Executor of the creditor of
any unsatisfied debt to Order the debtor to satisfy that debt. Now, as
both the Caller Razl and Judge Evantine noted, Blob's Orders were not
directed to the Bank's debtors (the ex-Players), but to the Notary. But
for our present purposes, that turns out to be irrelevant. Even if R1599
had permitted Blob to direct Orders to the Limited Executor of the
Bank's debtors, the exercise of this power would be a prerogative, not a
duty. It might not even be an Official prerogative, since R1599 grants
its permission to anyone who is the Executor of a creditor of an
satisfied debt, not just to the Executor of the Bank.
These considerations make it clear what would be needed to make Blob's
Orders Administrative Orders: a requirement in the Rules that the
Treasuror seek to recover debts from the Bank's debtors, or, more
generally, a requirement that the Treasuror seek the resolution of such
debts in some fashion. But there is no such requirement in the Rules. It
is an Official prerogative of the Treasuror to seek to forgive debts
Without Objection (R1470); it is equally an Official prerogative of the
Treasuror to do nothing at all about debts owed to the Bank. I conclude
that Blob's Orders were not performed in the course of carrying out
Official duties. They were, therefore, not Administrative Orders, but
2. Were Blob's Orders validly executed?
I have previously addressed the question of the validity of Private
Orders, in CFJ 1094, and most recently in the Appeal of CFJ 1237. The
arguments given there are still broadly applicable, so I'll only briefly
rehearse them here.
Rule 1796 establishes the criteria for the validity of Private Orders:
In order to be proven valid by CFJ, the Rules must permit the
Player who executed the Order in question to execute such an
Order, that the execution of the Order must have been required
by or permitted in the circumstances which existed at the time
it was executed, and that the Order has not been rendered
invalid by the operation of any other Rule.
As in the cases discussed in CFJs 1094 and 1237, we are not dealing with
Orders which were required in the circumstances which existed at the
time they were executed. Neither is there any other Rule rendering
Blob's Orders invalid. The question is therefore whether Blob was
permitted to execute these Private Orders in the circumstances which
existed at the time.
Some argue that the making of Private Orders is neither prohibited nor
regulated, and is therefore permitted by R101. Justice Kelly took this
line in eir Appeal Judgement of CFJ 1237. For myself, I think the making
of Private Orders is regulated by Rules 1808 and 1796, and so R101 does
not apply. However, the regulation of Private Orders in these Rules does
not prohibit Orders of the kind issued by Blob. The Orders were
therefore permitted in the circumstances which existed at the time they
were executed. They are therefore validly executed.
3. Were Blob's Orders properly executed?
This is, in my view, the central question raised by the CFJ, one which
has not yet been considered by a Judge. I don't consider it the place of
the Board of Appeals to settle this question; hence the decision to
re-assign this CFJ to a new Judge.
However, I note that the question of the conditions under which Private
Orders are properly made has been considered by Chuck in CFJ 1172 and by
Crito in CFJ 1247, and I recommend these CFJs to any future Judge for
Panelist Kelly's Arguments:
Statement of Facts and of the Case
This case is an appeal of a judgement determining that several Orders
issued by Blob were invalid. Blob, who at all times pertinent to this
Appeal held the Office of Treasuror, Ordered Razl, who at all times
pertient to this Appeal held the Office of Notary, to satisfy the
debts of certain entities who possessed abandoned property and had
incurred substantial debts to the Bank. The Notary is empowered to
execute transfers on behalf of entities possessing abandoned property,
/see/ Rule 1908, but Notary Razl had indicated eir unwillingness to
execute transfers for the purpose of paying these debts. Blob then,
resting apparently on eir authority as Executor of the Bank, ordered
Razl to satisfy those debts. Razl challenged the propriety and
validity of these Orders, and Judge Evantine held that the Orders were
invalid. E did not reach the question of the propriety of the Orders.
1. Did the court below err by applying the wrong standard in
determining that Blob's Orders were Administrative?
2. Did the court below err by applying the wrong standard in determining
that Blob's Orders were invalid?
3. Did the court below err by failing to consider whether Blob's
Orders were proper?
Classification of Orders
An Order is "a command . . . directed to some entity requiring that
entity to perform exactly one action . . . ." Rule 1793. Orders are
further classified by the Rules into five distinct and disjoint
classes, Judicial, Appellate, Administrative, Legislative, and
Private. /See/ Rule 1794. The proper classification of any given
Order is important because the standards used to determine validity
and propriety vary by class. For example, Legislative Orders are
presumptively both valid and proper, while Appellate Orders are valid
only under limited circumstances, /see/ Rule 1807.
The determination of the class of an Order is a matter of law. We
therefore review this decision of the lower court /de novo/.
Judge Evantine concluded that the Orders were Administrative because
Blob's message stated, "As Executor of the Bank, . . ." meaning that e
intended for them to be taken as an Official action as the Treasuror.
While I have no doubt that Blob intended for eir Orders to be seen as
Official acts of the Treasuror, this is not determinative. The
definition of the class of Adminstrative Orders is "an Order executed
by an Officer in the course of performing the duties of that Office,
except when those duties involve acting as a member of a Board of
Appeals." Rule 1794. The proper question which we must then resolve
is whether Blob, in executing those Orders, did so "in the course of
performing the duties of" the Office of Treasuror. To this end, the
court below erred in applying the wrong standard to determine the
classification of the Orders.
The "duties of [an] Office" consist of those acts which the Rules
require (or contingently require) the Holder of that Office to
perform. So, for example, the Rulekeepor has a duty to publish the
Ruleset periodically, /see/ Rule 1051, and the Clerk of the Courts has
a duty to stay certain Orders under certain circumstances, /see/ Rule
1809. The Treasuror, on the other hand, is not required by the Rules
to pursue the collection of unpaid debts due to the Bank. E is merely
empowered by the Rules to do so. While doing so is probably in the
better interest of the game, the Rules do not make doing so mandatory,
and thus no duty arises therefrom.
I conclude that these Orders were not executed in the course of
performing the duties of the Office of Treasuror (nor those of Blob's
other office, the Office of Speaker-Elect, which has no discernable
duties of its own), and as such cannot be Administrative.
Validity of Orders
Even if the court below had not erred in concluding that the Orders
were Administrative, it would still have erred in concluding that they
were invalid. An Order is valid when "the Rules ... permit the Player
who executed the Order in question to execute such an Order, that the
execution of the Order [is] required by or permitted in the
circumstances which existed at the time it was executed, and that the
Order [is] not rendered invalid by the operation of any other Rule."
Rule 1796. This rule is inartfully drafted; its first two clauses are
identical in import. In short, an Order is valid so long as the Rules
do not make it invalid. Relatively few Rules speak to the validity of
Orders. Orders which seek to compel a Judge are invalid. Rule 1830.
Appellate Orders are valid only under limited circumstances. Rule
1807. Essentially all other instances of Orders are valid as long as
they have been executed in accordance with the Rules pertaining to
their class (Rule 1808 for Administrative and Private Orders, Rule
1803 for Judicial Orders, Rule 1805 for Appellate Orders, and Rule
1891 for Legislatve Orders).
The determination of the validity of an Order is a matter of law. As
such, we review /de novo/.
Since these Orders do not seek to compel a Judge and were executed by
publication, they would be valid either as Administrative Orders or as
Private Orders. In either case, the court below erred in applying the
wrong standard to determine the validity of these Orders.
Propriety of Orders
The court below did not reach the question of the propriety of the
Orders /sub judice/. Since this is generally a question of fact, we
review for abuse of discretion. The failure to consider a necessary
question is abuse of discretion, and as such we must remand.
The court below erred in holding that the Orders /sub judice/ were
Administrative Orders, further erred in holding that those Orders were
invalid, and further erred in not considering whether those Orders
were proper. THEREFORE, the Judgement of the court below should be
VACATED, and the matter REMANDED for further proceedings not
inconsistent with the opinion of this Court.
Appellate Order(s) by Steve:
As Lead Justice of the Board of Appeals for CFJ 1295, and with the
assent of the majority of the Justices comprising that Board (i.e. Kelly
and myself), I execute Appellate Orders to vacate Judge Evantine's vacation
of Blob's Orders.