Of all of the political philosophies that exist in Cybernations, there is one that stands out, and rightfully so. Francoism is the most developed, most practical political philosophy, and it's more or less practiced by the most powerful alliance in Cybernations - the NPO - thereby adding to its clout as having empirical evidence to back itself up. Yet, there are several flaws in its analysis that lead to conclusions which are therefore also inherently flawed.
First, we must understand what a developed philosophy is: it makes several assumptions on how the world functions, theorizes on how those assumptions affect human behavior, and then propose ways to maximize our safety or our utility (happiness). Francoism does all of that - the assumptions start with how the cyberverse acts in the state of nature (a world without alliances), and then it theorizes on this climate affects alliance formation and organization, and concludes with policy recommendations on how to properly manage an alliance. Therefore, in order to properly critique Francoism, we need to necessarily start at the beginning, or the initial assumptions.
Vladimir and his colleagues contend that in the state of nature, there is complete chaos, where every nation fights each other for the emotional thrill (war mongering) or to the advantage of their own nation (tech raiding and the like). It's a fair assumption except that warfare is not the only option available to individual nations - they can choose a more benign path and engage in other activities such as doing tech deals on their own (or other uses of the aid slots), trade resources with other nations, and run and vote for senators in their trading sphere. Furthermore, the act of declaring war while not being in an alliance with numerous mates to back you up is a very risky business - by engaging your resources to fight on nation, an individual alliance would be leaving themselves vulnerable to attack. In a long term situation, the most rational individuals would rise to the top through careful nation management and only selective warfare, either to defend themselves or to engage in piracy of some kind. Therefore, in the long run, we see that warfare is the exception to the rule, and that even in an initial state of nature, it would not necessarily be constant.
Of course, this assertion begs the question on how alliances are in fact formed. The answer is that most players are not willing to wait in the long run for warfare to not be as much of an issue, and even if they waited that long, there would be no guarantee of safety. An alliance does several things that cannot be achieved by an individual nation - it can hold people accountable for defending each other, and it can help smooth the process of growing a nation through collective wisdom (guides), and handling the logistics required for aid programs (tech trading, startup aid, etc). Over time, we can see that the alliances that manage to accomplish these goals most efficiently, and those who help ensure their own safety by bonding with other alliances will over time rise to the top. A good philosophy combined with skilled leadership can enable rising to the top and ensuring the position more effectively. And while the leadership of those who supposedly practice Francoism is commendable, it's not entirely clear that what Francoism says matches up to a realistic alliance policy.
Given a Francoist framework, the ideal alliance structure is based around a complete meritocracy without any elements of free choice. Free choice, or democratic elements, only encourage elements of the state of nature which in itself is detrimental to the alliance since the state of nature is detrimental to the growth of a nation. However, given the previous analysis with the problems of the initial assumptions, we can say that complete meritocracies are not necessarily an ideal or even good. Since some elements of the state of nature can be good, some elements of the state of nature can be applied, such as allowing for some free choice, especially for areas that do not directly affect the security of the alliance (anything but military positions, and arguably foreign affairs positions). In fact, we see that elements of democracy are present in nearly every successful alliance, including even the NPO, as their charter states:
The Council will consist of six elected Councilors. The Emperor is the ex officio chair of the Council. This council will be charged with the day to day operations of the alliance.
So, is a meritocracy truly the best form of alliance organization? As a pure form of meritocracy, unlikely seeing as we have yet to see such an alliance maintain a position of prominence. It is more likely that different alliances should have different forms of organization to suite their needs - smaller alliances can usually utilize democratic elements more effectively since a tight-nit community seems to have the same effect of mitigating negative elements of the state of nature as a large, more dictatorial form of government. Clearly, we can also exclude purely democratic forms of government for reasons that have been discussed throughout Cyberverse discourse, but smaller alliances can use strongly democratic elements quite effectively. However, as soon as we see these alliances become too large, the democratic elements succumb to the negative effects of the state of nature and can give the alliance in question numerous troubles.
Lastly, Vladimir points out that even in the current situation,
(Vladimir, The Meaning of Freedom, 2007). While Vladimir attempts to point out the differences between the international anarchy and the state of nature, his analysis falls short as to provide a reasonable explanation as to why the international anarchy should be any different. Alliances are self-interested as are individuals, and given that each alliance has its own character to make it comparable to an individual nation, the current international anarchy is essentially the same as the state of nature, only that certain interests have risen to the top and have political sway in the international sphere. However, given that there is no sovereign power that ultimately controls the Cyberverse, this political sway comes into question. Nonetheless, we see that the better alliances have risen to the top and, and for the most part, have been able to maintain their position there with relatively few wars, and hardly a state of complete chaos - not unlike the earlier analysis of a long-term state of nature. If Francoism was correct, then even in the international sphere, we'd have chaos and constant warfare. We do not have that. We may fear for the safety of our nations, but we hardly live in a state of chaos.it becomes apparent that we live in what is essentially an international state of nature -- an international anarchy