I know we are all so hyped up about the drama surrounding GGA*, and on a lesser note, Jonathan Brookbank, but perhaps we can take a step back, and consider an idea, the concept of "political dueling."
A couple of months ago, one of our past triumvirs, Brian Reimer and Duncan King performed an "honor duel." I don't recall the outcome, only that the winner would be decided by who lost the most score (or something to that effect). It was a good way to blow off steam, and use the war system which we only get to use once or twice a year in a major war. So why can't we do this more often? Imagine the benefits:
-It can allow someone to use the war system, and actually prove themselves in battle, and not wait for an alliance war to have a bit of fun
-It can be seen as a moral step-up from tech raiding as a means of practicing warfare
-Individuals can be singled out for being dumb, instead of having the whole alliance take the punishment
-We can actually figure out who is, in fact, better at commanding their nations into battle
-Should it catch on, leagues and different kinds of political attractions could provide a new outlet for PR, and things of that sort.
This sort of idea has been used in the past to some degree - wargames and whatnot. However, people probably edge away from them in fear that too much warfare will weaken their nations too much, not allowing them to build up against a stronger enemy. Of course, this idea could be extended to alliances, providing alliance-on-alliance warfare without the fear of a curbstomping.
I think it would be a fun addition. Hell, maybe I will challenge someone, and see where it goes.
*Ferrous' brief note: seriously guys, get over them. They've been stuck in the mud for how long now? This is news to who now....?