Forums: Index > Game Discussion > Bhelen or Harrowmont?
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Just wonderin', which one did you guys help?

      • done it four times, helped Harrowmont every time, but once I changed my choice of king to him at the last opportunity just to get the achievement.

Retro21 01:06, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

  • With the exception of Dwarf Noble I usually pick Bhelen, for purely pragmatic reasons. As a Dwarf Noble I can't help mysylph but to seek revenge. XxSylphxx 12:42, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

I'm a pragmatist, so Harrowmont to get his first quest->Betrayed from Within->Bhelen to gain early access to the Royal Palace. IN 12:49, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

      • wait, what's pragmatic about picking Bhelen?

Retro21 14:06, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

Early access to Orzammar Royal Palace => ability to finish The Trial of Crows, part III (ambassador Gainley contract) => Red Jenny Seekers. I experiment with archery builds a lot, so it's a must-have. Not to mention you can get Ageless at the same time. If you don't side with Bhelen, you won't be able to finish The Trial of Crows until after A Paragon of Her Kind. That's it. IN 14:49, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

how are those even related o.O

How are the quests I refer to related? How are Ageless and Red Jenny Seekers related? How are Bhelen and Harrowmont related? I'm at loss here, sorry :) IN 15:57, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

  • Ageless, though changing who you support during either Lord or Princes Requests Quests can break both of these quests changing who you support at the quests completion (once you've returned with the crown) harms nothing (I have done it both ways). The fact that I initiate both quests to open up areas but do not complete but one of them can confuse the citizen of Orzammar (including Ohgren whose dialogue may suggest you are supporting the opposite of who you selected if you opt to bring him with you throughout the Deep Roads). Though your reasons are sound for whose quest line you follow, none of these decisions need effect whom you ultimately select. XxSylphxx 15:29, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

Therefore I suggest finishing A Lord's Trust (first sub-quest for Harrowmont) to gain 15 DAO goldpiece trans from Baizyl and a high tier rune/Shale crystal from Piotin, then double-crossing him to support Bhelen. Oghren is still confused a bit, poor old drunkard, but I can live with it :) Ultimately, your decision to side with Harrowmont or Bhelen should depend on your playstyle: if you like role-playing, side with Harrowmont, he's a better man... uh, dwarf. If you have an archer/DW rogue in your party and wish to maximize his damage output ASAP, go for Red Jenny Seekers, even if it means siding with that obnoxious prince. IN 15:57, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

Piotin does not always give a high tier rune, or crystal for shale. His loot is randomized, so you may only get some gold or a greater health poultice, etc. Bhelen is the better leader even if he is a tyrant, as he improves the life of dwarves while Harrowmont clings to the old ways and the continued discrimination against casteless(plus almost all of his endings are bad). You get earlier access to Thorn of the Dead Gods, Duty, and the discount from Lord Anwer Dace gives you 25% off the goods Gorim on the surface sells. You can get everything else Harrowmont provides siding with Bhelen(including any Piotin pickpocket loot), etc as you gain access to the provings after killing Jarvia. Bhelen is Julius Caesar, while Harrowmont is Pompey. Mictlantecuhtli 16:06, February 10, 2010 (UTC)
Well, there is a save/load function I prefer to use whenever I'm stealing from high rank targets. Of course, his loot is randomized, but you have a decent chance to get a high tier rune/crystal.

And yes, I'm fully aware of the 'consequences'. Epilogue events, however, do not affect your actual gameplay, and should be considered a role-playing element.

If you are into Roman history analogies, Harrowmont is a Cicero-flavoured Cato :) I fail to see any resemblance to Pompey. I admit Bhelen is definitely a Caesar-like figure, though. IN 16:20, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

Yeah I didn't think Harrowmont fit Pompey either, but Bhelen is definitely Caesar. So by Pompey being his greatest rival I loosely attached it to Harrowmont. The last time I stole from Piotin I reloaded about ten times before I got anything of real value, so I thought it should be mentioned that depending on luck that's a time consuming process. Mictlantecuhtli 16:32, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

I can't pick, so I've characters for all the potential options. Just thought I'd mention, though, the option of A Prince's Favor: The First Task > Shifting Allegiances as a way of getting the benefits of supporting Bhelen (such as early access to Aeducan Thaig, and the Red Jenny Seekers) whilst "secretly" supporting Harrowmont (as an alternative to following the Bhelen story until picking Harrowmont at the very end). Zoev talk 17:43, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

The way I usually pick who to support here is totally based in my character's background. My dwarves would rather stab themselves in the foot than support Behlen, so they side with Harrowmont. My humans and elves think of throne succession in Fereldan terms. Behlen, as the son of the King, is the only one fit to take the throne even though they see the dispute between the two upon entering Orzammar and it's explanation of dwarven succession. For my humans and elves, it'd be like not supporting Alistair, though he's the son of the King, and making the Captain of the Guard the King.

Kaydia1 20:45, February 10, 2010 (UTC)

Dwarf of clanless origin has absolutely no choice but to support Bhelen. His own beloved sister is married to this guy, how can a dwarf betray his sister? Also, Bhelen is about to start reintegrating the clanless into dwarf society. So he may actually be a better ruler than Harrowmont. As the final titles say, 'a tyrant or a visionary'.

Bhelen if I'm anything but a Dwarf Noble as his epilogue is better than Harrowmont's but Harrowmont if I am a Dwarf Noble, that way I can have my revenge and become King in the future. (que Alistair's evil laugh) --Warden Of The Dales (talk) 19:01, August 3, 2010 (UTC)

If I'm playing the Dwarf Noble, I support Harrowmont. Everyone else generally supports Bhelen. Gruedragon (talk) 19:05, August 3, 2010 (UTC)

As the Human Noble, I was so angry at being involved in their political games that I simply played the hell out of each other, to the end; I let Harrowmont have the crown because it was the outcome that assured me the opportunity to personally smite at least one of their asses. As an Elvish mage I went with Bhelen for more open trade and the potential for direct lyrium trades with the Circle. As a Dalish, I didn't have any motivation to get involved, and just went with Harrowmont for the arena glory. Playing as a casteless Dwarf, I'm going with Bhelen simply because it gives my family a richer gravy train. DokEnkephalin (talk) 19:31, August 3, 2010 (UTC)

You know, even though I know full well what a snake this guy is, I can't get over what a smooth flatterer he becomes when he's banging my sister. DokEnkephalin (talk) 19:48, August 3, 2010 (UTC)

As far as I know Bhalen is base don the roman politician Octavius, who through deceit, manipulation and brute force became Augustus, the greatest ruler of the roman emperor, and the namegiver of this mounth.

As such he represents the future, the autocracy, while Harromount represent the past, the aristocracy, or more likely the plutocracy

It is far better to have an autocratic ruler then an aristocratic one. The aristocratic ruler is bound to the desires societies elite, while the autocrat is as the name suggest, unbound.

An unbound ruler can do whatever he want, he can recreate society in his image, removing everything he sees as unjust and unnecessary. He can be a visionary and the best thing that have ever happened in society, or he can be the worst.

In the first half of the twentieth century we saw the rise of some of the wickedest most ruthless autocrat ever known.

By choosing an autocrat, society put their faith in one man, poorly placed and the result will be disastrous, but are we too afraid to believe, we might never reach true glory

-rphb- (talk) 19:39, August 3, 2010 (UTC)

Bhelen: Now I can embrace you as a brother. Aja: Hm, okay, but mind the tits. DokEnkephalin (talk) 14:41, August 4, 2010 (UTC)

you can get red jenny seekers early early on in the game ..from loathering go to denerum..cant spell but the back alley justice quest one of the bandit leaders randomly drops the red jenny seekers just save and load till he dose

I also support Bhelen. I totally abhor the caste system, so I'd support anyone who would do something about it, no matter their character qualities. Ygrain (talk) 05:18, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

The quest-line to choose the king of Orzammar and the end result in the epilogue is one of the finest bits in the game. Most games, no matter how much they boast, still don't have anything better then generic good-evil stories where the outcome of your actions is quite predictable. You be nice, do good and support the good person and the outcome will always be good. It's so predictable unlike real life. This quest on the other hand is awesome because when you do good things and support the good person Orzammar remains in darkness and strife continues. On the other supporting Bhelen, who is a rotter, ensures that Orzammar will prosper.
I simply love games with such ambiguous and gray quests where the player is forced to question one's own morality.....are you ready to ruin an honest old man's life for the sake of a city and put a detestable person in power because you know he'll do good? Since I always play as a good guy, playing through this quest was really really conflicting for me.
Similar is the quest for Brother Burkel. You help him open a Chantry, thinking you're doing good, but in the end it results in his death, and even opens up the possibility of an exalted march....I was really amazed when the epilogue said that he'd been slain, because I had fallen into the pattern of 'do good - get good' which all games follow. Thus this was refreshing. The only other game that offered such quests was the Witcher. That is why these are the greatest RPGs ever, and not ME.IP no. (talk) 06:55, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

Yes it is a good game and a good quest. Bhalen is of course Gajus Octavius from the Romen republic Later known as Emperor Augustus of the Roman Empire. Julius Cesar began the journey from republic to empire but it was Augustus that finished it, he that founded the grandest empire the world have ever seen. Octavius was a tyrant. Everyone have heard the story Shakespeare wrote about his fellow ruler Antony and his affair with Cleopatra. Many believe that Antony was an honourable man that respected his neighbour. Octavius destroyed them, destroyed everything they stood for, and went so far as to burn down the fabled library of Alexandria; all to insure his unchallenged, absolute sovereignty of all the Hellenistic world.

Had Antony won, the empire would never have been, the consequences of this being to grand for even I to imagine. Good-Evil, another word for black and white vision, and who but the fanatic have that? The superheroes of course, which is why I absolutely despise the American comic. Evil means against, nothing more. Whatever is against your protagonist or your home nation is Evil. The USSR was Evil for the USA and the USA was Evil for the USSR.

Seeing "Evil", is seeing nothing at all, for everything and everyone, seeks Good.-rphb- (talk) 09:21, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

The parallel with Octavius is not so clear-cut. The army reform that allowed the Roman "casteless", the capite censi, take part in the military service, was enabled by Gaius Marius. There is a similarity between Bhelen and Caesar, as both were high-ranking noblemen who went against the conservative system. As for the Octavius - Anthony parallel - well, I do not know which "some" believed Anthony an honest men, I'd say he was equally ruthless but less capable. - But no-one here claims that Orzammar is is actually ancient Rome, do they :-) Ygrain (talk) 17:10, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

Personally I choose Bhelen every time, the first playthrough I choose Harrowmont not knowing he basically cuts off Orzammar from the surface and hurts trade, where Bhelen on the other hand, despite being pretty ruthless ends up actually doing some good. As a Human Noble, my character doesn't know what he did to his brothers, so he sides with the one he agrees with more. Tyranno Ex (talk) 14:35, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

Bhelen all the way unless im a dawrf nobel. Bhelen is just a better king he actually thinks the clastless can be useful, even if he is a bit of an ass. PinkOldShoes (talk) 22/08/2010

I picked Harrowmont. I was not pleased with the ending at all!! I did not realize he was so conservative, I was just trying to hurry up and get out of Orzammar so I picked him because it was assumed that Bhelen killed his brother. I like the idea of Bhelen changing things for the casteless.RhiannonCousland (talk) 16:28, August 22, 2010 (UTC)
Am I the only one that actually tries to reflects a little more on the question and actually reads a little of what other people have posted already?-rphb- (talk) 16:52, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

What do you mean? You think others don't?RhiannonCousland (talk) 17:48, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

My first game on dragon age was a dwarven noble, and it really affected my view of Bhelen, I never want to help him and I did it once for the achievment. Agow95 (talk) 18:03, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

when people say the same things without any sign of having read or understod what have been posted already then yes, just look at the comment between yours and mine, or the one before that. This is supposed to be a discussion but if the conversation don't move forward, if new commenters don't take into account what old commenters have already said, then their comments and the tread itself becomes pointless.-rphb- (talk) 19:05, August 22, 2010 (UTC)

Not really. Sometimes someone might come along and post something new after the repeated comments. I think it's cuz everyone wants to have something to say on the forums if it interest them enough. One of the comments you are talking about is mine, I think.RhiannonCousland (talk) 01:26, August 23, 2010 (UTC)

Really too bad that there isn't a third choice - both are crappy choices from the perspective of the player who's experienced all the origins and several versions of the ending. Bhelen is clearly corrupt and unworthy, while Harrowmont is a poor dwarven politician, therefore a weak leader, and uninterested in changing what's wrong with dwarven society. --Cael Aurion (talk) 16:51, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

It is true that Bhelen appears to be the better choice from the perspective of game's end. Nevertheless it seems to me that the Bhelen choice will turn out to be short sighted, and will backfire in the long run. Consider the following:

  • If Bhelen has heirs, assassination will be the order of the day for generations. Siblings will kill siblings, children will assassinate parents, and parents will assassinate children; for generation upon generation upon generation upon generation... Such a murderous legacy can hardly be expected to be good for Orzammar or for the Dwarven race in general, as Dwarven subjects can be expected to imitate their rulers.
  • History (and logic) reveals the major flaw with the benevolent dictatorship; namely, it carries the seed of its own destruction and never lasts. Sooner or later a ruthless dictator will oust the benevolent dictator, (or their benevolent successor, or successor's successor) using the same violent tactics of the benevolent dictator. In particular, Bhelen can only stay in power by relying on a violent group of followers to suppress his opposition. Sooner or later, one of those violent, "might is right" types will successfully turn on him. And once a ruthless dictator gains power, all bets are off. There is no mechanism to get rid of them. Ruthless dictators generally ramp up violence many orders of magnitude beyond the level of violence of their predecessors, making them much more difficult to get rid of. They will slaughter millions to retain power.
  • Harrowmont's apparent failure may give us a misleading picture. Specifically, Orzammar apparently has major structural problems. Consider the "topside" dwarves you meet in the game. Not a one is trying to go back to Orzammar. Dwynne in Redcliff says that Orzammar was an existence of endless fighting. Oghren isn't eager to go back. Orzammar is country relying in large part on mining, which is neither a happy nor healthy existence. Moreover the lyrium that is mined is addictive and both physiologically and psychologically damaging. If you don't believe this, spend a few minutes talking with the shopkeeper near the entrance to the Diamond District. Quite possibly the lyrium and mines are responsible for Branka's extreme insanity (which occurred in the mines below Orzammar).
  • Perhaps the damaging nature of mining in general, and/or of lyrium, is the actual cause of Orzammar's caste system and/or violence. The point here is that there are major problems of undefined causation in Orzammar. At best, Bhelen is probably attempting to get rid of symptoms, but not the underlying problems. Neither Harrowmont nor Bhelen can cure the symptoms without addressing the underlying problems.
  • Thanks for listening. WarPaint (talk) 16:59, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

  • WarPaint, that's a very good analyses but I cannot agree with it. The best form of rulership, depends on the situation. and a dictator is usally always a better chose then an oligarchy. And that is what Orzammer have in their cast system. Bhalens real life equivalent is Octavius, later known as Augustus the great first Imperetor of the Roman Empire.
  • Now your prediction of murder an assassination were true, in his case and of his successors. But it was concentrated in court. The conmen man in Rome did not reflect their leader, he did not assassinate his brothers for dimes. The assassinations happened, as is also the case in Orzammer only in the top. When the Senate had power it was there, and between all of the noble houses that this violence took place. When Augustus seized power, all of this intrigue got concentrated on one single person, and one single position, the throne.
  • Absolutism doesn't moreover necessarily mean dictatorship. The history of Denmark is a good example. In 1660 after a nearly total defeat to Sweden in the Scandinavian wars, Frederick III saw the opportunity to create a constitution where the king would hold absolute power. With this one stroke the power of the nobles where broken, and a count became equal to a peasant on paper. Money became the sole dividend of their powers. This helped make the society much more equal and fair, as your position in society was no longer determined my birthright, but solely by skill and the favour of the king.
  • When it was finally time to update the constitution in 1848 it was done without the spilling of a single drop of blood. Democracy by default, prosperity by reason and not a one who had interest to fight against it.
  • I understand your concern of dictatorship, but what they become depends on what they replace. Answer me this. When you say Bhelen, do you think Hitler? Or Stalin? Try thinking Augustus, and I think you will see what I mean.-rphb- (talk) 18:58, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

-rphb- I disagree with your Roman analysis. I think the better, and probably intended, basis for Dwarven society would be Japan, or perhaps China. Japan, after all, is the society that was completely closed off. That wasn't a factor with the Roman Empire.

  • Most likely where you and I disagree the most is the "ends/means" problem. I don't think that ends and means are separable. They are invariably one and the same thing. That is to say that the means always contaminates the ends. One cannot achieve a pure end using a foul means. It simply is not possible.
  • The above should provide the answer to your question on what Bhelen suggests to me. It suggests a dictatorship achieved by trickery and sibling murder. Those means will not be without negative consequences. If it is acceptable in any Society to achieve power in that manner, then others will copy that behavior. Violence begets violence. You're just deceiving yourself to argue otherwise. There are time when one can justify violence; but first, the circumstances must be sufficiently compelling to truly justify the violence. On what basis can Bhelen justify killing his own brothers? Had he tried other solutions? Second, the level of violence must be controlled so that it is focused on preventing the crime involved? Again, were murders justified here? Was murder the only solution? And did you not notice that Bhelen's opponents are now trying to murder him (exactly as I said above)?
  • We absolutely do not agree. The end is always a part of the means used to get there. The Bhelen legacy will not turn out well. WarPaint (talk) 19:59, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

Please log in so I can know ho I'm talking too. I said it before, I hate posters who is to lazy to create a free account. Second. I argued with empirical data, while you argue only with belief.

End vs. means is very important in ethical contexts, but you must understand what it means first.

No ends can justify any means, but there is no means that cannot be justified by the right end.

This is a truism, or at least the conclusions of pure truisms. If you do not follow I can elaborate further, but it is tiresome to go from A to B all the time, when I am already at D.

I will not debate your comment further, mister, unknown contributor; not unless you come with arguments based on logic or empirical data. An opinion means nothing, if it is not founded on facts or truths.-rphb- (talk) 20:10, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

If you look, you will see that I corrected my failure to log in almost immediately -- and long before your most recent posting.

  • I totally disagree with your means/ends understanding. Perhaps if you spend a little more time on "A" and "B", you will not find yourself arriving at an incorrect "D" in the future. Your assertion that "any means" can be justified is ridiculous. According to that analysis, one can justify selectively wiping out whole races; religions; etc; or even the entire human race. Perhaps the planet itself. Hell, why stop there? Why not wipe out the entire universe? I'm sure you believe you've got a good reason. Pardon me, but I cannot agree. WarPaint (talk) 20:24, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

Ps. I see it was you WarPaint, so I will elaborate further. Might and right is a very old conflict. Ultimately, you need might to make right. Whether or not an act of murder was justified is not the question, but rather if it was the best means to acquire the end. There is no such thing as a "noble" end, nor any "pure" means. Everything have consequences, and everything can hurt.

Power, the power of states, are not the same as the power of civilians. civilians lives inside states to avoid the power struggle in "State of nature" You cannot compare the act of murder inside a state, with the killings that happens outside of it. If one person seeks shelter inside a state it is murder. If none do, if both seeks to create a state or to control a state, then its termination. We cannot talk about law, as there is no laws in the state of nature, and about rights: when conflicts collide, and both parties are in the state of nature (and this is always a choice) then you have the right to do absolutely everything.-rphb- (talk) 20:26, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

Ah, I new I needed to explain the sentence some more.

Let me break it up for you. No ends can justify any means, but there is no means that cannot be justified by the right end.

The sentence is a statement of relativism. It means that no acts, or ends can have absolute value. If anything had, everything would be relative to that, and insignificant beside it. And there is absolutely nothing that cannot under the right circumstances be overruled.

Do you truly want us to go all the way out to the axioms of A and B or can you follow it know. If you can't come with a concrete and precise rebuttal. You have the burden of prof. -rphb- (talk) 20:34, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

I disagree with nearly everything you've written in your last post -- For example, I think you would find Gandhi in disagreement with your assertion that "you need might to make right".

  • I totally disagree with your assertion that "Whether or not an act of murder was justified is not the question". Of course it is the question in a society based on rules and laws. If there are no rules and laws, there is no society, no state, only anarchy. (By definition in the case of anarchy, nothing needs be justified.)
  • You claim that there are no laws in the state of nature. Darwin would disagree with you on that. Indeed, a world of physicists and scientists would disagree. In the philosophical realm of nature and law, I would commend to your consideration the detailed topic of "Natural Law". Wikipedia has a short discussion of same. WarPaint (talk) 20:54, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

As to your most recent assertions; it is you that claims "there is no means that cannot be justified by the right end". It's not up to me to disprove something you haven't proven to begin with. And you cannot prove such an assertion; for the fact of the matter is that there are some means that are just plain wrong under any circumstance. WarPaint (talk) 20:54, August 24, 2010 (UTC)

An additional comment: Your statement "And there is absolutely nothing that cannot under the right circumstances be overruled." is self contradictory. If there is nothing that cannot be overruled, then your statement admits it can be overruled. Hence the statement, itself, cannot be always true and therefore must be falsely asserting that it is always true. Hence the statement must be false. In sum, you've worked yourself into a conundrum founded on faulty logic. Enough said. WarPaint (talk) 00:47, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

I don't believe that the end justifies the means, either - nonetheless, sometimes you have to use those means, justified or not. Neither solution is truly good here, what you are trying to do is choose lesser evil. What happens after Harrowmont dies? Is Orzammar stuck in the same deadlock as before, with no-one's claim strong enough to secure the throne? This could easily end up with the various fations warring in the streets, even a full-scale civil war. No good ends, and consequences you cannot possibly foresee at the time when you make your choice. Damn, the game does get under skin. Ygrain (talk) 05:10, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

I agree that what we have here is a search to find the lesser evil.

If the Warden supports Harrowmont, the Warden is repeatedly attacked by groups labeled as Bhelen "fanatics". There's a message there. Moreover, the prior king of Orzammar who also happened to be Bhelen's own father revealed before he died which choice he believed to be the lesser of evils; Harrowmont. I believe that this king knew a great deal more about Orzammar, Bhelen, and Harrowmont than I could ever know. His choice shouldn't be ignored.

At the end of the day, there is no good solution. Bhelen has screwed things up royally before the Warden & Co. ever arrived in Orzammar. He's screwed up the Aeducan blood line, and he's screwed up the election of Orzammar's future rulers for at least several generations, regardless of which choice the Warden makes. To me it's pretty clear that it was this knowledge that destroyed Bhelen's own father. I go with Bhelen's father's choice; Harrowmont. WarPaint (talk) 08:52, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

Forgive me WarPaint, if my comments were unclear. It was very late when I made the last, and I was honestly getting tired.

Relativism, and absolutism, are interesting concepts, yes I know the distinction, and I do not claim that nothing is absolute. I claim that it is two distinct spheres. That which is absolute is the eternal, logic and everything of pure reason and Truth. That which is relative is the timely, that which is temporary. If anything is absolute, it must be an eternal truth, valid anywhere and at any time. My sentences of logic and ethic are of that category or at least ideally should be, I may be mistaken as I am myself not. However you cannot disprove a sentence that claims universal relativism in the timely by pointing out that it is in itself absolute.

I say you have the burden of proof because I really think you should argue against me and my points, and not merely reject them as is.

You claim, You Claim, that: for the fact of the matter is that there are some means that are just plain wrong under any circumstance

I would like to hear this; I would like you to prove this.

To the state of nature, and the laws of nature, I am perfectly aware of what it initials. But a natural law, is fundamentally different, from a human made law. A natural law is in its essence an eternal law or truth that we can only glimpse imperfectly. It is ideally this laws that any human laws are build upon. That is the only reason that we can decide if a law in itself is unjust. Justice is fundamentally a non-human eternal concept, if it were not, it would be defined my might, and there would be no conflict between might and right.

Killing is not the same as murder. You can kill many beings, without committing a murder. A soldier is not a murderer, when he kills an enemy; a butcher is not a murderer when he kills a cow, and a hunter is not a murderer when he kills a dear.

I say state of nature, for that is what exist above the state of man, when you reach a certain point, human laws no longer applies, it is our hope, that democracy have made it impossible for any man to reach that point. In a primitive society like the Dwarven oligarchy the borders are not as clearly cut, you can kill or have killed many of your brethren whiteout committing murder, as seen in the origin stories.

The nature of an oligarchy is that the top of its society lies above the state, and therefore any law, any “human” mortal-law. What Bhalen does is politic nothing more, whether or not a political act can be justified can only be decided by the end, and the intended end of that action, not the action itself. Only inside a state can an action itself be given meaning, outside of it, only the ends matter.

Now this does not give your lease to do anything, the end must be apparent, concrete, and soon after. A fantastic end lying generations away cannot justify anything, and furthermore isn’t legal at all, as it traverse the border of nature and man. It is an argument of a man ruler, to justify any travesty he commits to his people.

Bhelen does not act against his people, only his opponents in the state of nature. His success means that only he would exist out there, outside the state of man, and therefore that only he - and his successors will be above the law.

It is always better to have few then many, outside the state; for only then can prosperity and advancement be possible. -rphb- (talk) 09:08, August 25, 2010 (UTC)


Sorry friend, but the burden lies on you to prove your assertions in the first instance. It is neither my burden, nor the burden of anyone else, to disprove your unproven assertions.

You asked what means might be wrong under any circumstance. I could give you a relatively long list but lets just start with the means used by Adolph Hitler. Please tell me what ends would justify the genocide of 30 million Jews. Then lets move on to a situation where the means employed is the killing or murder (choose whichever term you wish) of millions of innocent civilians; men, women, children, babies; using the longest and most painful torture possible, with no hope of reprieve for any of them. You claim that "there is no means that cannot be justified by the right end". Justify the years and years of screaming, crying and wailing. Have at it. Tell us the end that would justify this. Then move on to the destruction of the human race. Then move on to the destruction of planet earth. Then move on to destruction of the solar system; the milky way galaxy; and finally the universe.

Claming that any means can be justified by the right end, doesn't mean that any means can be justified, it requires the right end.
Coursing unnecessary suffering can never be justified, with emphasis on the unnecessary. Extermination an excess population might be justified; but you see it the wrong way.
A human life cannot have eternal value, for it will end, and so will the solar system and the universe. It will be destroyed, it is only a matter of time. Time destroys everything. If that cannot be justified, then nothing is justified, then nothing have value and the horrible act you are referring to, becomes pointless.
It is a question about the eternal vs. the timely, and it is fundamental, do not confuse the concepts, we must have clarity.-rphb- (talk) 09:45, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
There you go with the faulty logic again. Your claim that any means can be justified does mean you claim that any means can be justified. A=A. Its as simple as that.
You now admit that causing unnecessary suffering can never be justified. So you've admitted that some means cannot be justified. We therefore are in agreement that some means are just plain wrong, as I said earlier.
Let's move on. WarPaint (talk) 10:20, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

Unnecessary is not something concrete. You only read half of what I write, It's getting tiresome.

Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, always at the same time as an end and never merely as a means to an end. Quote Immanuel Kant.

This sentence is a universal Categorical Imperative about acts, without saying anything about a concrete situation, or individual means or ends. A simple concrete sentence like: Don’t steal, don’t lie, don’t kill, don’t screw around, always have exceptions; as doesn’t take the circumstances into account.

The Categorical Imperative however is on a higher level, that says nothing about the concrete circumstance, only about how you should perceive them. My sentence, outrules any of the simple faulty sentences, that all have this in common, that they ignore the consequences of an action and focuses only on the obedience of the rule for the rules own sake. -rphb- (talk) 10:42, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

We are further in agreement that this is getting tiresome. Your Kant quotation, your universal Categorical Imperative, etc., and whatever, are additional to your earlier assertions that you've now admitted to be wrong. It is not incumbent on me or anyone else to comment on your new assertions that are beyond the point of our discussions.
Irrelevant comments require neither reading nor rebuttal. If you find that tiresome, so be it. WarPaint (talk) 11:03, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

I was trying to show you the difference between an absolute doctrine and a universal law, my sentence forbade the former and was build on the later, as is Kant's. I have at no point swayed from my original position, I have merely been trying to elaborate it to a point you would be able to understand.

I will however not discuss this point any further as long as you keep acting like a child. Think what you will, your opinion is beneath me.-rphb- (talk) 13:30, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

Yeah. rhpb convinces me on this one.--Fialdestiny (talk) 02:59, November 10, 2011 (UTC)

If I may return to the original topic: on a second thought, is Harrowmont truly so honorable? We know that he was not sincere with Lord Helmi and Lady Dace - next to nothing in comparison with killing one's siblings; yet, a sign that he may have some skeletons in his wardrobe (sorry, don't know if the idiom exists in English) that we just don't know of. He must have gained his position somehow, and given the ways of dwarven politics, he must have been more cunning or ruthless that other competitors. Ygrain (talk) 13:40, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

try running a trip to the Shaperete before going to Lady Dace and Lord Helmi-rphb- (talk) 13:52, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
Too late, it's done. So, this was just another trick of Bhelen's? Alright, my Warden was taken in - and, for all he knows, Harrowmont is untrustworthy :-) Ygrain (talk) 13:56, August 25, 2010 (UTC)
It's okay, it took me a coople of playthrough before I found it too. But the point of all this is, that even with all of Bhelen's faults he is still the better candidate because by supporting him you help clear the way for an autocracy, which is always preferable to an oligarchy. -rphb- (talk) 14:12, August 25, 2010 (UTC)

Call sides. Flip a coin, and be done with it. --Isolationistmagi (talk) 03:06, November 10, 2011 (UTC)

Jesus, why bring this back up after over a year? On the bright side, it's kind of funny to read all the junk -rphb- said. TKismyname (talk) 04:56, November 10, 2011 (UTC)

I chose Harrowmont for my first run, but afterwards I went for Bhelen, cos I thought he had the much better epilogue, despite the questionable means he used to get there: It's one of the downsides of any of the dwarven origins: Because you are kind of forced by logical reasons to vote for a specific candidate-Dwarf Commoner has to vote for Bhelen cos their sister bears his child, and Dwarf Noble for Harrowmont because Bhelen tricked and exiled them. SunflashTehMace (talk) 08:14, November 10, 2011 (UTC)

Sorry for reopening this topic, but I think its worth mentioning that we have failed to address the overall subject to the end vs means discussion and the real relativity of the king election.

1. The Warden is not a diviner who has a cristal ball to see the future. You make a decission based on your moral values. Some would go for Pragmatism, some others will uphold their morals over the personal gain. That the Epilogue says something at the end might not be a good reason to base current choice. 2. American Government is known for double standards over Ends vs Means, so lets take a simple example: Atomic Bomb in Nakasaki and Hiroshima. Was it justified?. Was Harry S Truman a Tyrant or a Savior?.

For me the End does not Justify the means, because usually those actions can last for centuries and might not be sustainable... you know as in Environmental Sustainability.

I do feel bad for the casteless, things we can see even in modern society, have the Indian castes as an example, but somethimes we cannot judge other cultures. If at the end Orzamar wants to be isolated from the world and keep the caste system, that is their election. If they want to keep their religion, it is also their election. We are branding that epilogue as "Bad" without taking into account that its just the Dwarfs nature to believe in stone and be isolated, living in the underground caverns. Bhelen might seem like a good choice, but we would rather believe Atomic Bombs were a good Choice?, Killing of Civilians in Vietnam to supress comunism? or Invading countries in the name of democracy... I stand by my moral values that End does not justify the means and Bhelen may not be a "bad" person but his means are not sustainable, even if the outcome is "the most desirable". One stands for the choices of the present and not the guess of the future.


I always go with Bhelen unless I'm Dwarf Noble. The DN wants his revenge on Bhelen for what he did. Everyone goes with Bhelen because he improves the city. While Harrowment sticks to tradition, it leads to the city becoming isolated with the surface.--James.rosing (talk) 16:57, May 17, 2012 (UTC)--James.rosing (talk) 16:57, May 17, 2012 (UTC)

1. The Warden is not a diviner who has a cristal ball to see the future.

  • The Warden can, however, use his/her deduction skills to find out who the better candidate is. No Warden other than the Dwarven Noble knows for certain Bhelen's character, and the Dwarven Castless even has your sister swear up and down that Bhelen is honorable. If you want to say we can't include our outside knowledge of the Epilogue, then it is also not possible to include our outside knowledge of the Dwarven Noble origin. For all intents and purposes, it is difficult, if not impossible, for the Warden to make an estimation of either dwarf's morality.

You make a decission based on your moral values. Some would go for Pragmatism, some others will uphold their morals over the personal gain.

  • Again, unless you're playing as a Dwarven Noble, you cannot know for certain which dwarf is the "moral" choice. Even better, if you play as the Dwarven Castless, your sister tells you that Bhelen is the right and proper choice.

That the Epilogue says something at the end might not be a good reason to base current choice.

  • See my above reasoning.

2. American Government is known for double standards over Ends vs Means, so lets take a simple example: Atomic Bomb in Nakasaki and Hiroshima. Was it justified?. Was Harry S Truman a Tyrant or a Savior?.

  • First and foremost, if you want to talk about horrible things during WWII, ask China about their millions of butchered civilians. No country is innocent.' Truman decided that it was better to nuke Japan than continue the war and risk a million casualties.

For me the End does not Justify the means, because usually those actions can last for centuries and might not be sustainable... you know as in Environmental Sustainability.

  • Not sure what you're getting at here. You're saying the end doesn't justify the means because the means can last for centuries, which would in fact make it the end, which makes your argument backwards... and I have no idea what you're talking about with regards to the environment.

I do feel bad for the casteless, things we can see even in modern society, have the Indian castes as an example, but somethimes we cannot judge other cultures.

  • We can always judge other cultures. It is entirely possible to say that what the dwarves do the casteless is morally wrong, regardless of their culture. Because that's the truth of the matter.

If at the end Orzamar wants to be isolated from the world and keep the caste system, that is their election.

  • The dwarves can also decide to help raise up the casteless and have closer ties with the surface, if you support Bhelen. And everyone but the nobles supports this. And considering the nobles are a minority in dwarven politics, this seems like the more popular decision.

If they want to keep their religion, it is also their election. We are branding that epilogue as "Bad" without taking into account that its just the Dwarfs nature to believe in stone and be isolated, living in the underground caverns. Bhelen might seem like a good choice, but we would rather believe Atomic Bombs were a good Choice?, Killing of Civilians in Vietnam to supress comunism? or Invading countries in the name of democracy... I stand by my moral values that End does not justify the means and Bhelen may not be a "bad" person but his means are not sustainable, even if the outcome is "the most desirable". One stands for the choices of the present and not the guess of the future.

  • Here is the problem with your argument. On one hand, you tell us that it is the moral right choice to choose Harrowmont, regardless of what the ending tells us. On the other hand, you say that we must ignore the obvious moral wrong that is the casteless, because that is simply dwarven culture. So... which is it? Do we use morals, or do we ignore them? Because it can't be both. And the way I see it, helping the casteless is a much better moral decision than supporting a man whose opponent is guilty of fratricide. And to be clear, it is easier to equate Harrowmont with the killing of civilians in Vietnam, because if he is made king with golems he does, in fact, murder many, many casteless and other dwarven commoners. Is that a better "moral" path? Rathian Warrior (talk) 17:13, May 17, 2012 (UTC)
Wow, I didn't think you would open this again, but I've been very active in this discussion, so I guess I will add my penny again.
End vs. means. this is a terrible distinction. You can rightly say that:
No end can justify every means, but any means can be justified by the right end.
Follow me now, what I am saying is that there is nothing that has absolute value, that nothing so to speak, is sacred, that it would be wrong to do certain things, no matter the circumstances, that the actual "utilitarian" effect, can be completely ignored.
The end matters, this is what utilitarianism is about, (optimising utility), but it isn't the only thing that matters.
the mean how you do something, is also important. And both with the ends and with the means we have intentions, and this are the most critical. You can't judge people solely by what they did, you also have to take into account what they intended. Intentions are all that separates an accident that result in death with first degree murder.
I hope you understand what I am getting at.-rphb- (talk) 19:03, May 17, 2012 (UTC)

First off, in regard to the question, it depends on the main character. My first character, Izen Cousland, played both sides to see what each candidate was like and he concluded that Harrowmont campaigned honorably while Bhelen was deceitful and underhanded. For Izen the choice was simple. Harrowmont respected the law and the rules that Orzammar set for itself. He respected their government process. Bhelen was a tyrant in the making who only cared about his own power and vision. Izen could not have known if Bhelen had any well-meaning intentions or not, but he did know that you cannot achieve good ends through bad means. Orzammar, if it was to progress, had to do so with prudence, not by the force of an iron fist. Even if Bhelen's rule had benefited Orzammar, who is to say his successor would not use the power Bhelen seized for himself to plunge Orzammar into tyranny? Lastly, Izen also believed Harrowmont most likely to honor the Grey Warden treaty seeing his respect for contracts and honor. Izen destroyed the Anvil of the Void for various moral reasons, one of which was that such power would have corrupted the government of Orzammar.
My second character on the other hand, Varos Amell, cared nothing for the future of Orzammar or the dwarves and only wanted whatever benefited him and his own goals. He also played both sides until the end, but he always planned on siding with Bhelen because he believed him to be as ruthless as he was. He saw Harrowmont as a weak chump. Varos preserved the Anvil of the Void and instructed Branka to share the fruits of her efforts with him.
Now, as for your post Rath, I agree with some of what you wrote and disagree with others. I agree that the character can use his/her logic and discernment to find out who the better candidate is, but I disagree that the player can logically apply his or her knowledge of the epilogue (or dwarven origins if non-dwarf) to the in-game character's reasoning. Still the character can make an estimation of each candidate's morality. The accuracy of that estimation may vary.
What he was saying was that the ends don't justify the means because the means can have long lasting negative effects, such as the example I pointed out above where Bhelen could seize power even with intentions to do good but whoever gets the throne after him might use the same power to impose tyranny. With Harrowmont the situation is at least no worse off than it was before, and any negative consequences that stem from siding with Harrowmont are the result of the assembly and the Orzammar citizens' failure to act properly. The way I see it, Orazammar is in trouble either way, the difference is if one person causes them to fall or if they cause themselves to fall. At least give the people the choice to succeed or fail on their own merits.
I agree with you that we can always judge other cultures. But the point is that your character doesn't know the future. They can't know that Bhelen's tyrannical actions will produce a positive result. You can know that as a player who knows the ending, but you can't logically inject that knowledge into the character. The character can hope Bhelen will do the right things, but they can't know for certain. Therefore supporting Bhelen is a gamble. Supporting Harrowmont is the right choice because Harrowmont conducts himself in a moral way. Also a system where the king respects the assembly is better than one where the king rules through power that he usurps from the assembly. If the king is not bound to the law, then what binds anyone to his command? The king's ability to take the lives of those who oppose him. That is a tyranny, and the citizens have no freedom under it even if their tyrant is a positive influence to that nation. I think that is his point, and I agree with that. Also, the face-heal-turn of Harrowmont should the Anvil be preserved can be attributed to the influence of Branka and the power she creates through the Anvil, a power hungry assembly that is corrupted by said power, and the continued existence of Bhelen anarchists trying to usurp Harrowmont. Without the golems Harrowmont winds up being assassinated without taking any hard-line measures against the anarchists. Believe it! (talk) 21:21, May 17, 2012 (UTC)

One cannot make a right decision with only in game knowledge. The player doesn't know enough about either of them to accurately predict what kind of ruler the candidate would be, unless the PC is a dwarf, and is biased obviously. Though I have to admit that I thought that Harrowmont's epilogue was a bit random, he didn't at all seem conservative, more like compromist, but hey, what do I know?--Agent047 (talk) 21:28, May 17, 2012 (UTC)

@Believe it.
I see you ignored all of my previous arguments for Bhelan, they don't get old just because they are - well old.
The fact is, the FACT IS, that Orzemmar is dying. The history is full of failed states, and although they are very different they share the general characteristic that the rulers are stiff necked traditionalist that refused to see the truth in the eyes.
Their traditions are unjust, but more then this, they are the reason why Orzemmar suffers so, the reason why it is in continues decline.
True the darkspawn have their say, just like any external facters always has their say, but a good state, a succesful state, is a state that can trive despite its circumstances, that is able to prosper despite adversity, and that grows stronger by it.
When you come to Orzemmar, when you really look at how Orzemmar is, really tries to understand its traditions and what it does to the dwarven folk, you will realise, unless you a dimwit (becase I really can't understand how you could use "derpy" as an insult). Anyway, if you just honestly look you will see how desperate the society needs to change.
And if you manage to come to the understanding that only a radical change can save the society, and you honestly want to try and save it) you would do everything you can to end the present weak and divided oligarchy in favour of one strong man, that can and will reform it into an autocracy.
I have said it so many times, but I will repeat it once again. there is no 1 best kind of government. "Democracy" that has become the paradigmatic norm in the western world, is good to sustaining a present order and insure a certain amount of social justice.
But not only does Orzemmar not have anything that can come close to a democratic goverment, but they are also lightyears away from fulfilling the conditions necessary to create one. You can't have a democrasy before you have an idea of equality of man, equal opportunity, equal worth. The caste system is in direct contrast to this.
You talk about tyranny like it is a universal evil that must be opposed with everything you got. But please define tyranny, and please explain what makes it bad, and under which conditions. Because there is nothing that is inherently evil, there is nothing that is absolutely good or absolutely evil, please try to understand this, and accept it as truth unless you can find a very good explanation to counter it.
I need to understand why you don't like Bhelen, is it because he dosn't play by the rules? But why would you have to obey a rule if it is stupid?
The end-means discussion becomes important when we try to defend Bhelans actions. the end is power, the power to change Orzemmar, to rewrite its destiny, the means are getting rid of the few people that stands in your way of that power. Who did Bhalen kill, (I'm sorry had killed, because he dosn't kill them personally)?
He killed his brothers, one of which is arrogant, and cruel and would have made a terrible king, the other is a boy, barely wet behind his ears and terribly naive. We can talk allot about what happens with the different origins and the story that follows, but the fact remained that the potential warden had never been to court before, he knew nothing about the political game where Bhelan had already secured countless alliances. He might be a good warden and a good hero, but Bhelan is a better king.
Even my dwarf noble supported Bhelan, because he couldn't just keep carrying a grudge, only a petty person would and you can't say that revange is a good reason to do anything.-rphb- (talk) 22:55, May 17, 2012 (UTC)

@-rphb- I didn't ignore your previous arguments for Bhelen, I simply wasn't aware of their existence. Orzammar's decay is due to a number of factors and it isn't clear if the government structure is one of them. What is clear is that those in power are not helping Orzammar to prosper. Blame the individual deshyrs who are responsible for holding Orzammar back. Traditions usually only exist because they have worked over a period of time. I don't see why Orzammar's can't work except that incompetent/selfish people control the assembly. But you would run into the same problem if it were just one person ruling. In fact, you'd be more likely to run into that problem since it's just one person. Absolute power consolidated on one person? Yeah.

You're right that the caste tradition is unjust and illogical, but in the case of Izen Cousland, who obviously was not a dwarf, he had no vested interest in changing Orzammar's government structure and thus it was not his place. However, I would argue that while Orzammar suffers from this, the solution to it already exists and does not require radical change. The casteless and even those with a caste have the choice of leaving Orzammar for the surface. They can also join the Legion of the Dead, which is on the verge of being recognized as a caste itself. The problem is that many casteless use their situation as an excuse to be dirty thieving dusters, and they are just as much a part of the problem as those deshyrs who refuse to find a productive purpose for the casteless.

Orzammar's troubles aren't just because of an assembly full of squabblers. It has to do with the darkspawn like you said, but I would add that the darkspawn are not your average external factor. The dwarves also have the problem of lower birth rate, which will make it harder to sustain a civilization. I understand what a successful state is, but who is to say Orzammar's is not a good or decent state in it's own right? They are surviving despite their odds. America is the best country in the world, but even we still have our problems.

The society does need to progress and improve, and I even said that, but change should not be radical and immediate. Change, if it needs to happen, should be done with prudence and caution. In most cases change should be gradual to avoid societal upheaval.

Here is the problem with your position though. How do you know that one strong man will use that power to reform Orzammar for the better? Everything in the game gives evidence to the contrary. Bhelen's own father, who was likely killed at the behest of Bhelen, said that he did not want Bhelen on the throne. He swore his most trusted advisor to run for the position, and Harrowmont agreed despite not actually wanting the throne for himself. He was doing it to honor the former king. Izen knew Harrowmont to be the only moral choice. With him Orzammar would be no worse off than it was, compared to Bhelen who may have plunged them into chaos. Izen wouldn't have to live with that chaos, so he had no right to force that possibility on the people of Orzammar. It wasn't Izen's place to change Orzammar. If Harrowmont and the assembly fail to improve Orzammar, then the people of Orzammar can handle that problem themselves. They wouldn't be able to handle Bhelen if he failed Orzammar. They'd be stuck with him.

Democracy doesn't work. That's why America is a Republic. Also "social justice" isn't justice. Justice is justice, and justice stems from morality. Worshiping the stone doesn't provide for moral guidelines, and I think this is the dwarves' most fundamental problem.

Tyranny is a universal evil because it is against freedom and liberty. Tyranny is force used against people to make them live for the benefit of the tyrant, that regime, or that group. Essentially it is slavery. This is bad because it robs people of the time they have to live, and in many cases it reduces their time to live.

Yes there are things in this world that are inherently evil. There is absolute good and absolute evil. If such matters were subjective then nothing would be good or evil in any way. In which case who cares whom you pick to be king? It's all the same no matter what in that case. Right and wrong are defined by God in the real world, the Maker in the DA universe. This is because God is all knowing and thus knows what is best.

I don't like Bhelen because he does not respect life, dwarven or otherwise, he uses threats to make people do what he wants, and he uses deception to turn people from the truth. He is uncaring, a bully, and untrustworthy. I am fine with ignoring stupid or meaningless rules, but what he disregarded were the sane and appropriate laws of Orzammar. Laws meant to protect other people from harm, intimidation, and slander.

If Bhelen's end was power to change Orzammar, even for the better, then it certainly does not justify his means which include murder, intimidation, document tampering, blackmail, conspiracy with carta thugs, etc. This is all immoral and Bhelen deserves nothing but an execution for what he had done. So what if his brother was arrogant? Is that a crime punishable by death? Nothing justifies Bhelen's murders. I don't know the dwarf noble storyline but from what I read it involves the playable character being the second child of the king. Which means that character is whatever the player makes it out to be.

The character I played as for this part of the game was a noble himself, and he knew more than enough about law and governance to make an informed decision on which candidate was best. I won't say that revenge is a good reason to do anything, but what you forget is that Bhelen deserved to be executed for actual crimes. He did not deserve the crown. Believe it! (talk) 18:08, May 18, 2012 (UTC)

You can't have change without social upheaval. Just look at the history of anywhere. The world is the way it is now because certain people at a certain time took drastic action, for good or ill. You can't effect change by playing it safe. Son Goharotto (talk) 19:09, May 18, 2012 (UTC)
I'd rather take the "playing-it-safe" guy than the other candidate who will do anything to gain power. I agree with you on the whole effecting change issue, you need someone with the drive to do so. But I can't help but mention Ghandi; he drove for social change without lying, murdering or betraying. Truthfully, I think we are actually given 2 pretty shitty choices and I take the lesser or two evils. EzzyD (talk) 19:27, May 18, 2012 (UTC)
I disagree. Change can take place with gradual and incremental steps without social upheaval. See the boiling frog analogy. This is not to say that all changes that take place this way are good however, but this is the better method because it is easier to see if the change is having a positive effect or not. From there the society will know to either continue in that direction or go back. A broad sweeping change ushered in by a dictator is incredibly difficult to undo. Believe it! (talk) 21:00, May 18, 2012 (UTC)

I don't really think Orzammar has time for slow social change now: darkspawn grow at an exponential rate while dwarven population slowly declines. Bhelen will alleviate the problem by giving Casteless rights and conscripting them in the fight against the darkspawn, as well as letting surface armies fight alongside them. Harrowmont will do none of those things, and his rule will ultimately result in internecine strife that would further weaken the Orzammar. While Bhelen commited numerous crimes to get to power, killing him will not undo any of them, so there is no point dwelling on his past. Finally, I don't have a problem with his authoritarian drive: the Assembly system was just a plutocracy designed to advance the interests of nobles at the expense of everyone else, and Bhelen rule is a step forward, not backwards for the dwarves.

Overall, choosing Bhelen over Harrowmont is easy enough for me. Anvil of the Void is much harder, but I still decide to spare it, because 1 golem = 5-7 regular warriors and so it is still worth it. 4Ferelden (talk) 10:50, May 19, 2012 (UTC)

Believe it, you make numberous mistakes, I will try to list them to make it more clear.

  • I)Your character, it doesn’t really have a point in this discussion so just drop it.
  • II)“America is the best country in the world” (…) Democracy doesn’t work that’s why America is a republic” Oh man, here you are just asking for it. I don’t really want to go to much into this discussion, as it is totally different, so let me just clarify a few things.
1) Democracy is not a concrete form of government, it is a philosophy of how government should be run. You can have democratic republics and democratic monarchies, and you can have undemocratic republics and undemocratic monarchies, because democracy just means rule by the people, not how the people should rule.
2)There are numberous flaws with republicanism in general and with the American republic in particular. I don’t believe there are any other country at least no other country in the western world that need a radical change more then America (USA) Because the American republic does not work, not at present, and it doesn’t work because how it is structured. Corruption is the rule of the day and no one but the very richest whit the most powerful tycoon friends have a change of running in your political system.
But if you want to take this with me, if you really want to discuss the flaws of the American system and what it means to be “the best country in the world” then I suggest we discuss this in another medium, you can have my secondary email if you ask.
  • III) “Yes there are things in this world that are inherently evil. There is absolute good and absolute evil. If such matters were subjective then nothing would be good or evil in any way. I properly should forgive you for not getting this, as you properly do not have a major in philosophy. But try to understand, what you said here is a statement, not an argument. I asked you if you wanted to challenge this position to come with excampels.
Allow me to come with a few for you to show you what I mean. “Torture is evil” And yes torture isn’t the best thing in the world, but that doesn’t mean that it is an inherent evil. Inherent evil means that there can come no good out of it, and that it can never be justified by refereeing to a “greater good”. But what if you captured a terrorist, that is part of a terrorist cell that has successfully hidden a nuclear devise somewhere in New York City. If you cannot get this man to talk within the next two hours, then the city will cease to exist and millions will die.
  • IV) “Radical change is never necessary”. I’m sure you are not familiar with the theory of corporate change. Sometimes you see a corporation that once worked well and was a market leader is starting to loose ground, because their internal organization is no longer optimal to the situation. I am sorry I cannot remember the reference as it is some time since I studied economics, but there are five stages of organizational decline. The fifth state of crisis is where the organization is doomed, there is no saving it, the forth state of crisis is where the situation is critical, but where immediate action and radical changes can save it. The first three stages are where the situation is less critical. Point being, depending on the situation at hand, sometimes only a radical change can save the organization, in this case, the City of Orzemmar.
To find out if they need a radical change, we need to first find out which stage they are on. I think that it is obvious that they are in one of the last states of the model. I do believe that Orzemmar can yet be saved, I do believe that they have not yet reached the point of no return, where abandonment is the only option, but they are close, and they need change and they need it now.
  • V) Tyranny. First autocracy is not the same as tyranny, second tyranny doesn’t necessarily mean a totalitarian state, third, when you deal with a complex issue that it is difficult to understand, it is always a good idea to come with concrete examples.
I will take Nazi-Germany as an example of a tyranny. I hope that you can agree that falls under this category. Nazi-germany was furthermore a totalitarian state, meaning the state wanted to interfere with everything even its citizen’s private life.
In the thirties Germany minorities were prosecuted and definitely not happy. That however does not mean that the average German did not have it okay, or perhaps even better then under the Weimar-republic that preceded it. The Nazies did a lot of good things for the German people, they created jobs, where before there were mass unemployment, they gave back the Germans national pride, that the punitive Versailles treaty had all but destroyed.
Of course there were a lot of bad things about the Nazi regime too, first and foremost the warmongering, that in the end doomed Germany, and Europe to a certain extend.
My point is, while it didn’t go so well in the end and the German people would have been better served with a more prudent leadership, it wasn’t all bad, it wasn’t inherently evil. And if its ruler hadn’t been insane, and if especially America, hadn’t insisted of ending the regime at any cost, we wouldn’t have had a divided Europe for so long. There is no single person to blame, a lot of different men bear the burden, but it wasn’t tyranny in an off itself, that was the culprit of WWII.
  • VI) Stong men and reforms. This again I think is a little related to Nazi-Germany. A strong man really can do a lot of bad stuff, but it depends on the situation, and the type of the depression and desperation. Germany had the potential to expand with the cost of a lot of free people. Orzemmar, can really only expand one way, and it wouldn’t hurt anyone if they managed to do that.
You may say, that they could also expand on the surface, but there you are wrong, even a dictator doesn’t forget his allies, besides the dwarfs doesn’t seem to have much desire to conquer the surface, even going up there seems to give them the willies. No It is quite certain from the context at hand, that Bhelans interest will be focused only on his own city and on the darkspawn, he doesn’t have hungry eyes on Ferelden and Orlais, and would have a dam of a time taking it even if he did.
And to the internal reforms, know that any reforms that Bhalen would pass would serve a purpose, HIS purpose, they wouldn’t be random unless you now claim that he is a madman..
And consolidating power to his office would be good for Orzemmar. Bhalens position would be stronger with an absolute and hereditary monarchy then an elective federal one, which will also be more efficient, so we can expect him to puss for that. Bhalens power will be stronger if he weakened the nobility and perhaps even abolishing it and the caste system all together, so it is likely that he would go in that direction. This will also be good for the citizens of Orzemmar, as it would make everyone equal under the crown.
I’ve already said all of this, but please understand, that “good” and “bad” needs to be defined in relation to “whom”. Something cannot be just good, or just bad, without an “it” to be bad or good for.
  • V) Leaving Orzemmar. You mentioned that as an option, that Dwarves were free to leave Orzemmar, that they are free to go into self-imposed exile, to abandon their home, their nation, their people. With this remark it seems like you truly have no idea of the importance of nations, the importance of home. Home is essential to us. It is part of us, it defines us. Without our home, without our homeland we are lost. Why do you think that banishment have traditionally been considered a worse punishment them death, why do you think that so many people, including the fabled Socrates, prefers death rather then banishment.
  • VI) Means and ends, I already talked about this, several times in this post alone, please read it and respond to that, before claiming that he should diffidently die for it. And please understand, that Bhalen only did what was in his nature, he is a natural strong man, that would always seek power. Sometimes the world would be better if such men got power, sometimes honorable men, are honorable fools.
And lastly, have you ever read The Prince of Machiavelli. A prince must be both a man and a beast. Only inside the realm can men be men, outside and above the realm there is only one law, and that is the law of nature, and that law is the survival of the fittest, by any means necessary.
Every state is always build on the work of one man.
Be glad that you have never been in a state of nature, be glad of your bondage in the state, be glad of men, like Bhelan, that made that state possible. -rphb- (talk) 11:24, May 19, 2012 (UTC)

Believe it, your arguement that democracy doesn't work, since America doesn't have one, and that it is the greatest country in the world is completely false and flippin' arrogant.America does have a democracy, ar at least it is democratic, since you choose your leader. Second, America is not the greatest country in the world. The health care sucks, racism and discrimination are abundant, the goverment is war mongering, the financially challenged are basically forgotten about, etc. If you're talking about military strength, then yes, but that won't last forever and if you think about it, are the people really that much happier and content because they know that the U.S. has created enough atom bombs to destroy the world a hundred times over? I think most of them would be happier with a solid roof over their heads, enough food to keep them fed and healthy and a steady job.
On topic, I think I'll have to go with Bhelen judging from the epilogue, even though his plot to get rid of his siblings was retarded and never should have worked. Change is more thorough and less contested when it happens suddenly. Just think of your own war of independence.--Agent047 (talk) 19:32, May 21, 2012 (UTC)

I chose Harrowmont on my first playthrough since he was the "nice" choice. But never again. I don't care if I'm using out of game knowledge. I vhoose Bhelen. He and Orzammar deserve each other. Wataru14 (talk) 11:55, May 19, 2012 (UTC)

Bhelen baby thas who I choose203.45.127.20 (talk) 04:46, May 22, 2012 (UTC)Darkside

I chose Bhelen because he opposed Harrowmont. To clarify, if harrowmont had run unopposed or against someone less ambitious, I might have chosen him, but with Bhelen there it is bound to be a mess if harrowmont is elected; bhelen would not back down, neither will his supporters and harrowmont does not have the "toughness", for lack of a better word, to quell the opposition immediately (IMO). He's honest and decent and the best dwarf all around but when it comes to politics and orzammar, a nation that has not changed in God know how long, you need someone ambitious enough to push his will through.

The dwarves are admitting that each year they lose a little more to the darkspawn, it seems to me that tradition is not working, you need change if you are to have any hope of turning the tide. Maybe it won't work, who can say? But it seems to me to be better than sit and wait doing the same old thing. Harrowmont might have changed a few things but he was too busy fighting Bhelen supporters to do any real work. --AnjaHaSch (talk) 08:40, May 22, 2012 (UTC)

Correct me if I am wrong, but don't some Dwarves speak about King Endrin's death and how he named Harrowmont his successor was likely due to poison or a feeble old man's wits being depleted? Going from the story of Macbeth the King spontaneously naming a new heir and then dying is pretty damn fishy to me. I look at it like this, Bhelen may be a scheming bastard, but Trian was going to be a bad king and you stood in Bhelen's way, possibly just as bad or worse. With the future of a country, if not an entire race is on the line, you can NOT take half measures. Would you rather Dwarven society continues and possibly grows under Bhelen or flounders and dies under Harrowmont. The choice, for the greater good, seems clear to me. Friendlysociopath (talk) 01:27, May 23, 2012 (UTC)

Its obvious what the best choice is, that's why this discussion have always been dump. I've never understood why anyone could think Harromount in any way would be a better king then Bhalen.-rphb- (talk) 10:57, May 23, 2012 (UTC)

Talk of politic, nature and beliefs of modern human society, makes for an intresting argument but at the end of the day its all redundant. Most arguments given are based theores developed from real-life examples not game given facts. Out of the two, with the info given during the game and ,mainly from, epilogue, Bhelen appears to be the best choice.Steph285 (talk) 10:45, May 23, 2012 (UTC)

@4Ferelden If Orzammar doesn't have time for something then necessity will demand swift action. Better to have a king who exercises prudence as a matter of policy, since slow change might be what Orzammar needs rather than swift action.

Rights that are given by a tyrant can be taken away just as easily. Bhelen only USES the castless to fight darkspawn. Besides, this solution already exists in either case. The Legion of the Dead, remember? Bhelen's use of the castless as warriors angers the warrior caste and the noble caste. That causes strife and assassination attempts are made on Bhelen as well. Harrowmont's position is that he wants to help the castless, but he needs the Deshyrs to cooperate in order to have the basis of law to support castless rights. If they don't, then he doesn't have the legal authority to take action. And there's nothing wrong with this. Most of the time government inaction is best because most of the time government only makes things worse. So what happens if the assembly takes no action? The castless are then left to decide their own path. They have the freedom to choose for themselves, not some ruler choosing for them. They can join the Legion, they can leave, or they can work to improve Dust Town. Heck, they could even join together and go reclaim another thaig and have it to themselves.

Harrowmont would like to have help from the surface, but again, he needs the legal authority to do so. Grey Wardens will always be allowed in Orzammar, and Orzammar isn't the only way into the Deep Roads. Also, Awakening negates this ending anyway, as Orzammar hosts a banquet in honor of Kal'Hirol's castless no less!

Harrowmont's rule would result in his death and the assembly choosing a new king (unless Awakening negates this as well). So what? They killed off a great king and now they have the freedom to elect one that will be a tyrant if that's what they want. The point is that the customizable character didn't force a tyrant on them. Anything that goes wrong in Orzammar is their own fault.

Bhelen's rule produces strife as well, but the strife is a result of his actions. Harrowmont's strife is due to Bhelen fanatics who still foolishly fight for a dead criminal. Harrowmont is clearly the better man in this aspect as well. All he wants to do is move on with things and start helping Orzammar. Bhelen's loyalists only want to tear things apart. If Bhelen is king, the Harrowmont supporters fall in line behind their new king, just as Harrowmont will do if Bhelen is king.

Bhelen's past crimes are only justification for his death. The purpose of his execution would be to prevent his future atrocities. Executing him doesn't undo anything, but it would be justice for those who suffered by his hand.

If Bhelen doesn't respect the authority of Orzammar law then why should anyone respect him as an authority?

The assembly system was designed to govern Orzammar by securing those most able to govern. That is what the caste system was intended to do. The problem is that the Deshyrs do not care about the people nor do they govern in any name but their own. So it's some individuals in the assembly, not the institution itself. The assembly could function if those problem Deshyrs were removed from power. There are legal ways to go about doing that.

Bhelen's rule is a step backward because it eliminates the rule of law. His supporters may have received some perks, but it came at the cost of their freedom.

Your decision with the anvil is just as misguided. 1 golem to 5-7 regular warriors is fine, but what happens when those warriors are Fereldens? Believe it! (talk) 19:58, May 30, 2012 (UTC)

@-rphb-In order:

  • The discussion involved the dwarf noble and the relation of non-dwarves to the situation. Clearly my human noble's relation to Orzammar was relevant.
  • I know what democracy is. America is not a democratic republic. It is a constitutional republic. The American republic is to thank for the majority of the world's wealth and innovation. You can also thank us for keeping peace among the other nations, as we have the strongest military in the world. One that I admit is being destroyed from within by the current administration, but it is still the strongest. America does not need any radical change. It needs tradition more than ever, as it was our traditions that made us the best in the first place. Any problem with the structure is due to non-republican and unconstitutional actions. Corrupt representatives can be recalled, impeached, or just voted out in the next election. That is a rational system of change. Anyone with determination can run for any office so long as they meet the constitutional requirements. Wealth has nothing to do with it. The Tea Party in America is made up of people from all walks of life, and many of their candidates are average people who have a wide range of support. It's about the content of your character, not your wealth. This was proven in the Republican Party's primary election. I don't really care to discuss this with you. I know I'm right.
  • Just because I don't have a useless degree in a meaningless field of study doesn't mean I don't get it. My statement is all that is required. It speaks for itself. I never said that most things could not be justified under the right circumstances. I merely recognized the fact that there is a clear right and wrong when it comes to morality.
  • I didn't say radical change is never necessary. Just that gradual change is best in almost every case. Besides, what you described was a logical change based on market conditions. That is not the same as radical change, such as that which government often engages in. The point is that radical change could be worse than the current state, and thus restraint and prudence are necessary.
  • I know what tyranny is as well. Bhelen was a tyrant, as the game itself even indicates in the dialog choices if Bhelen is crowned. The character can say, "I didn't give you that crown so you could be a tyrant". Harrowmont rules? He's ready to start helping Orzammar. Bhelen tries to overthrow him right then and there. Bhelen rules? Harrowmont concedes and bows to Bhelen, respecting the law. Bhelen has him executed anyway. So from this we know that Bhelen is impatient, wants power for himself, and does not value dwarven life. Your screed about the Nazi regime was pointless. The issue is if Bhelen was a tyrant or not.
  • What good strong rulers can accomplish is not the issue. The issue is that power in the hands of one person is a bad situation because it must necessarily reduce freedom for the individual citizen. Any expansion Orzammar makes is not worth the price of freedom, and any victory achieved through the blood of innocents would be a hollow one. How am I wrong that they could live on the surface? They already DO live on the surface, and Fereldens accept them and even respect them. I didn't say they should conquer the surface. I said the castless should seek a better life on the surface as other dwarves have done. The only thing that is certain about Bhelen's interest is that it is focused on power for himself. I never said he would attack the surface however. I agree his orders would serve his purpose, but my argument is that these orders violate the laws of Orzammar. That establishes a very dangerous precedent. Who is to say his successor won't wield the same power to bring about a brutal dictatorship? Bhelen's rule will be quicker than the electoral system but efficient to what end, to instituting his own tyranny? Again and again you fail to recognize the possibility of Bhelen's power opening the door to disastrous consequences. Making everyone equal in misery is not better than some being better off than others. What is best is having a situation where everyone can work hard to better his or her own lot in life.
  • I know the importance of good nations, but a nation that already exiles many of its citizens is no nation of importance. The castless are already exiled. On the surface they have a real chance at a good life, and if they leave then that means less for Orzammar to deal with. Home is where the heart is. A bad nation is not something worth being a part of. Just ask any of the millions of illegal aliens pouring into America from Mexico. Legal immigrants are allowed to come here and when they do they are not asked to abandon their culture. They are free to celebrate it as they wish. The only difference is that they have a new home now. The dwarves are still free to worship the stone if they want to. Can the same be said for the Andrastians living in Orzammar? Banishment is only a punishment if the nation you live in is a good one, or if you still have loved ones there that you need to protect. There are Americans of Lebanese origin that love living here in the U.S.A. but they fear for their relatives still living overseas. Socrates? I thought he considered himself to be a "citizen of the world".
  • I did read it and I replied to it. Nothing of what Bhelen intended to do justifies all the crimes he did do. He murdered, which is a crime against the individual. He forged documents, which is a crime against the institution of Orzammar according to the Shaperate (if you take his forged documents to the Shaperate). Bhelen has no regard for dwarven life or dwarven society. His ends (whatever they were) do not justify his means. And don't bother with that "in his nature" stuff. Are you excusing him for his actions? He chose to do all those things, and the only reason that was his nature to begin with was because of choices he made many years before to take that path in life. He could have been like the middle sibling and done things honorably. Even in the case of Harrowmont being made king, he could have just been patient, helped Harrowmont fix Orzammar, and then been the best candidate when Harrowmont died of old age. But no, he didn't do any of that did he? He wanted power and he wanted it right then and there. Sometimes the world would be better if such men got power? Yeah, just not in YOUR nation right? And tell me, where does one find all these little angels who are going to use this absolute power in a moral and just way? And if honorable men are sometimes honorable fools then why would you want them to have such power? They will use it foolishly in that case won't they?
    No I haven't read that. I am no Machiavellian in case you couldn't tell. I go with the founding fathers who believed in the laws of nature AND of nature's God. They recognized the reality of nature, but also the authority of God in how men must conduct themselves.
    "Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of men will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice, without constraint." - Alexander Hamilton
    Bhelen was no man. He was a child, and died like one. People like him did not build this nation. It was built by free men and women each pursuing better lives for themselves and their families. Believe it!

@Agent047 My argument isn't that democracy doesn't work simply because America isn't one. My argument was that democracy doesn't work, and that is why America is not a democracy. I said America is the best country in the world because it's a fact. America does not have a democracy, nor is it democratic. It is a Constitutional Republic that has certain elements of democracy at specific levels of society for specific purposes.

You say we choose our leader, but that does not automatically mean we are a democracy. In America we have what is called an Electoral College. That means the president and vice president are not elected by a democratic majority of voters, rather they are elected based on electoral votes. The majority of voters in a state cause their state's electoral votes to be awarded to a candidate. The candidate with the most electoral votes wins the nomination, and all the states have a varied number of electoral votes. This means that a candidate can win the majority of votes nation-wide but still lose the nomination to a candidate who wins the most electoral votes, such as the case with Al Gore losing to George W. Bush in 2000.

Moreover, our Congress is not democratic. The House of Representatives has a number of reps from each state to reflect the population of each state. However, the Senate has two representatives per state. So a state like Rhode Island with a low population will have equal representation in the Senate as the most populated state of California. At one time the state representatives elected the Senators, but this was later changed to statewide vote. So you are quite wrong when you say America is democratic.

America's healthcare system has problems due to liberal policies that are against the free market. However, even with these problems we still have the best healthcare system in the world. A doctor can be seen almost instantly upon request, unlike countries with socialized healthcare where one must wait for weeks. The level of care is superior to those of socialized countries where care is rationed and costs have to be cut and regulated. The cost of healthcare in America is higher than any other place in the world because it must support 20 million illegal aliens and other uninsured people at no cost to them. Thus the cost is passed on to the people who do things the right way and have insurance. Also our idiot government inflates the price with subsidies and requirements. It also allows unlimited demands in regards to lawsuits against doctors, causing malpractice insurance to be high and thus the doctors must charge more. Everything wrong with America's healthcare is due to European policies that have been implemented by the liberal democrats in Congress and the White House.

Racism against people of color is insignificant and has no effect. Racism in favor of people of color is another story. Racism is also another problem that the liberals subject us to in that they always seek to divide us by race and turn races against each other.

Discrimination simply means to tell the difference between. So that isn't a problem. Prejudice is a problem, but it's one that America does not suffer from, unless you mean prejudice in favor of those who don't deserve what they're demanding.

The American government, warmongering? I wish. The current administration is weak when it comes to dealing with foreign threats IMO.

The poor have all kinds of programs out there to help them. The problem is they treat the safety net like a hammock.

You are right that military strength won't last forever, not with democrats running it into the ground.

Are the people really that much happier and content because they know that the U.S. has created enough atom bombs to destroy the world a hundred times over? Mmm... yep. :) Better we have them than those who actually WOULD destroy the world a hundred times over.

I think they would be happier having EARNED a roof over their heads, food, health, and a job, rather than having all that stuff given to them by government masters.

The Revolutionary War was not one of change it was one of preservation, as was the Civil War. Believe it! (talk) 20:00, May 23, 2012 (UTC)

I'll let this link speak for me Rathian Warrior (talk) 20:04, May 23, 2012 (UTC)

That's fine. None of it was directed toward you. Believe it! (talk) 20:10, May 23, 2012 (UTC)
How can we be expect to read all of that? ^^ I'd say you're losing your battle by fighting too hard, mate. EzzyD (talk) 21:47, May 23, 2012 (UTC)
Those are replies to three other people. You don't have to read any of it if you don't want to. Believe it! (talk) 14:14, May 24, 2012 (UTC)

Once upon a time this was a good thread with interesting, DA-related arguments XD -Algol- (talk) 10:13, May 24, 2012 (UTC)

I always choose Bhelen simply because I recognized very early on that Harrowmont wouldn't make a good king during a crisis - he's far too conservative and mired in tradition, and while his relative unwillingness (for dwarven nobility, anyway) to play dirty is an admirable character trait in and of itself, it's not going to work for someone who has to preside over a nation under constant siege by hordes of monsters banging on the doors and a bunch of poisonous, backbiting deshyrs who all think they could do a better job than you. --UrLeingod (talk) 11:01, May 24, 2012 (UTC)

@Believe it.
Believe it, I believe your own citizens has a word to describe a person like you. I believe Americans call your kinds “Redneck” correct?
You need to follow the rules of a discussion if you want people to actually have a discussion with you. I’m starting to suspect that you don’t, that you really don’t care what anyone else says, and you just want to hear yourself talk.
I will start with just taking a few examples of what you do wrong, just to point them out to you so you may understand them, or if not you, then at least everyone else.
If you do understand, please respond point.
  • I) My argument isn't that democracy doesn't work simply because America isn't one. My argument was that democracy doesn't work, and that is why America is not a democracy. I said America is the best country in the world because it's a fact.
You have two postulates here 1) That democracy doesn’t work and 2) That America is the greatest country in the world.
you blatantly admits that they have nothing to do with each other, so why try to put them together at all?
I believe that I mentioned the part of democracy because that I believe that you were a democrat, and by “democrat” I do not mean the political party but the philosophical position. I am not going to discuss the merits or lack thereof of democracy because that is a digression that has nothing to do with the main discussion.
So you postulate that America is the greatest country in the world. But that is too undefined to actually make any sense. First we need to find parameters of what you want to measure, then you can say (if America scores first place) that America in this particular instance is best. But even if you do score top place on many different parameters, (which you don’t by the way) it will still be difficult, if not outright imposible to define you as “the greatest” because it is a highly subjective statement.
I respect your patrionism and love of your nation, but don’t let it degrade into unwarranted patronizment and hostility. As long as you have the delusion that you are the best, you will be unable to actually learn from others.
  • II) America's healthcare system has problems due to liberal policies that are against the free market
I do not think that you understand what “liberal” actually mean.
Liberalism is the ideology that support the minimal state, that insures only that people are free from coercive force of others. There is nothing in liberalism that wish to expand the state beyond the bare mimimum, and there is most certainly nothing in liberalism that wants to limit the free market. The Free market should be limited and regulated, because there are cases very clear cases, where it is more optimal for the society to do so. But even beyond the obvious there are many good reason, conservative and socialist reasons, to further regulate the market, especially socialism who wants to redistribute wealth in order to insure social justice.
So just to be clear.
Conservatism is to preserve the traditions
Liberalism is to maximize the personal freedom and minimize the state
Socialism is to insure social justice by redistributing wealth..

To your points about @rphb

  • III) I know what democracy is
It is good that you recognize that America isn’t a democracy, but I cannot understand why you do believe that it is good that it isn’t. While enlighten absolutism has a certain appeal, as an alternative, plutocratic bureaucracy certainly does not. What makes it even worse however, is that your own government does not admit that it is a plutocracy and thereby try to justify it, but instead, like many a dictatorship, makes pretensions of democratic elections, elections that are inert due to massive gerrymandering. You even invented the term. Even from the beginning you did not care about peoples votes. Our democracy, my peoples democracy, started more modest, with only men over the age of 35 with owned a private property had the right to vote. But you see, all of these men had a right to vote, and their votes counted equally due to our always proportional representation.
Also, corruption only has little to do with an individual, and much to do with the power structure of his society. There are lots of things in the American system that encourage corruption, the dependence of private sponsors and the lack of party subsidies just one of them.
But again this does not really ad to our discussion about Bhalen and Harrowmont.
  • IV) Yes there are things in this world that are inherently evil. There is absolute good and absolute evil. If such matters were subjective then nothing would be good or evil in any way.
This was what you said, and again, this is a statement, I asked you to validate the statement, all that it says on its own is that you believe this is so. Unless you want to support the position that believes like these are nothing other then a matter of “taste” in the same way as you can like cheese and I can hate cheese and neither of us will be wrong in doing so, then you have to support this statement with some kind of argument.
And if you do believe that it is only a matter of taste, then this entire discussion makes no sense, because we al already know what your “taste” is.
  • V) “What is best is having a situation where everyone can work hard to better his or her own lot in life.
Orzemmars caste system makes it impossible for anyone to improve his lot in life. Sure Bhelen is impatient, sure Bhalen doesn’t respect Orzemmars traditions, but look where these traditions have led Orzemmar?
And when I refered to Bhalens nature, I wanted to stress out that we do not choose who we are, only if we want to be true to ourselves and follow our fate or try to fight it. And I believe there is a reason for all of us. I won’t go too deep into this because it is teology and not really founded on pure logic. However you seem very quick to blame, very quick to judge, and I think has a very black and white view of things.
I want to ask you, can’t you see how bad things is with Orzemmar, how desperately it needs change, and how much it is exactly Orzemmars tradition that have led it to its current state.
You seem to think that nothing good can come from a dictator. But just look at the ancient Rome. Julius Cesar was a dictator, Octavianus Augustus was a dictator, and Rome didn’t start to actually blossom and become a world power until these great men seized power for themselves, superseding the rules and traditions of the republic, creating the empire whose legacy have shaped the world until today.
Alexander created the concept of the “Hellenistic world”. And Gengis Khan transformed the scattered Mongolian tribes into a power that shocked the entire world. All of these men were dictators, and all of these men are revered heroes by their people. I know that the Iranian people see Gengis Khan as the devil, (their population wasn’t restored to the premongolian level) before the beginning of the twentieth century) But how they are seen by outsiders, is not important, it is how they are seen by their own that matters.
I admire all of these men, men that were great because they were willing to risk everything, and wanted nothing less, then everything.
A lot of people are coverts, they do not dare not even for a moment, to step upside the protective confines of society, into the state of nature, into the place where nothing protects you and nothing inhibits you.
Crimes you must understand, is defined in societies, in states, they do not have validation above and beyond it. Bhalen had to be king, because if he did not manage to transcend his society, and become its guardian, he had to have been held accountable for his actions inside of it.
Bhalen had this one change to be king, and he took it, others wouln’t, others would have played by the book, others would have been coverts. He risked it all, to gain it all, he had the potential of becoming a dwarven Augustus.
  • VI) Nations and home
You do not understand. First of all, I think that you are confusing Socrates, (from ancient Greece), with Immanuel Kant, (from nineteenth century Prussian Köningsberg). Home is a concept that I think it is difficult for any American, let alone Americans like you, to understand. America is a second order homeland, build on immigration, except for the few natives, whose true homeland you have destroyed, you do not have your ancenstrual history there.
You think you are superior to all, because there are nations worse then yours out there? Do you know how many immigrants and fugitives my country gets? All civilized countries that do well attract people from poor countries that don’t. I don’t think you have to worry about illegal Canadian immigrants, nor illegal French or Germans, illegal emigrants to Canada is properly a bigger problem for you, but that’s another story.
Home you see, is not just where the heart is, and most certainly isn’t where you make it. Home is where you are made. It is a constitutive part of you that you cannot deny, and cannot escape. Yes, people generally prefer a place that is safe from a place that isn’t, but I think most if not all your Lebanese would prefer that their homeland was safe, rather then being welcomed openly to yours. And I think that many would return if the situation in Lebanon became good, stable and safe, some properly if it just got decent. -rphb- (talk) 22:09, May 24, 2012 (UTC)

PS. Belive it, your founding fathers where rebels. whether or not "rebel" means "freedom fighters" or "terrorist" depends solely on whether you have sympathy with them, and whether or not they win. But in all cases, rebel is someone that does not play by the rules, that disregards the rules of the state and tries to seize power outside the established structures. -rphb- (talk) 22:27, May 24, 2012 (UTC)

-rphb-: I agree with most of your points, but can you please do something about the typos? It is really detrimental to see Bhelen or Orzammar misspelt 10 times in a row.

Here are a few responses of my own.

If Orzammar doesn't have time for something then necessity will demand swift action.

And is it still capable of that swift action? Because it surely didn't when the darkspawn first came and it took the first Aeducan effectively overriding the Assembly to prevent Orzammar from falling to the darkspawn. If they couldn't do that beofre, how likely it is that they will be able to do that now?

Executing him doesn't undo anything, but it would be justice for those who suffered by his hand.

Ever heard of the expression "an eye for an eye and the whole world goes blind"? By the same logic, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and other senior government and CIA officials should all be killed to do justice to the people killed in the wars they started, for one. Plus, saying that killing him will prevent future atrocities is like saying that killing a butterfly will prevent future damage to crops: he got what he wanted, he has no reason to to commit more atrocities (wiping out Harrowmont's House is an exception but that is the price of stability - there are just as many Harrowmont's supporters as there are Bhelen's and they are equally stubborn, as evidenced by rebel dwarves attacking you no matter whom you supported. The difference is that Bhelen can hadle the situation while Harrowmont can't.

Rights given by the tyrant can be taken away just as easily.

Except that he cannot do that now, as he reached the power largely because of their support. To reverse it now would be nothing short of suicidal. I also find your belief in Legion of the Dead and Casteless' opportunities incredibly naive. The former is overstretched and doing the best it possibly can, which soon be inadequate as the dwarven population falls while darkspawn one just keeps on rising. The Casteless being able to band together and reclaim another thaig is laughable, as they have no training that Bhelen will give them when he upgrades them to Warriors. The Carta Casteless are an exception, as they can afford the training through the profits from their criminal activities, and so aren't an indicator of the Casteless martial capability. If anything, Casteless going on such a venture would probably have a POSITIVE effect on darkspawn numbers, as they will end up with enough ghouls and broodmothers to make up for their loss.

The idea of them somehow making Dust Town better is also out of touch with their reality - there are no job opportunities besides Carta and unlike modern underclass they don't receive any welfare whatsoever. Also, for all the talk of "the Legion accepts all" the overwhelming majority of members must be from rich Castes, as they wouldn't be able to afford all that heavy armour otherwise, so the Casteless would just form an under-equipped cannon fodder to the rest of the Legion. Granted, they WOULD be trained, but that would still be inferior to to Bhelen's solution.

Lastly, I don't really care what Harrowmont would like to do, or how much of the proceedings are his fault: all I'm interested in is the end result and Bhelen's rule obliterates the Harrowmont's when viewed that way. 4Ferelden (talk) 10:19, May 25, 2012 (UTC)

P.S. Your decision with the anvil is just as misguided. 1 golem to 5-7 regular warriors is fine, but what happens when those warriors are Fereldens?

What is your point here? That golems would be unnecessary once Ferelden reinforcements arrive? Firstly, you need Bhelen's rule for that, and so it is incompatible with the rest of your argument. Secondly, the surface armies aren't going to be there forever, and will have to leave soon enough (I'm guessing as soon as the mage-templar war starts.) When they leave, a lot of the gains made will be reclaimed by the darkspawn. Also, they can't push too far into the Deep Roads, as you have the whole issue with supply, etc. Golems, on the other hand, require no supplies and will be a lot more useful than the surface armies when enough are made (probably even more useful when Branka finally figures out how to give them greatswords, but that is a little off-topic.). In short, while surface armies are useful, golems are more important in the struggle against the darkspawn in the long term and having one does mean you don't need the other (with enough golems and help from the surface, the darkspawn might even get wiped out by the end of the current age.) 4Ferelden (talk) 10:19, May 25, 2012 (UTC)

@-rphb-Incorrect. My fellow Americans refer to me as a "patriot". Follow the rules of a discussion? You mean like calling my opponent a "redneck"? I addressed your points and countered them. Think whatever you want about me. At the end of the day my argument will have facts, evidence, and logic behind them.

  • 1. I didn't put them together. Those are two separate responses that addressed two separate points. I do believe in the right to vote regarding certain aspects of the civil society, but I do not believe in majority rule or "mob rule", and neither did America's founders. America is the greatest because we have more freedoms and liberties, have a higher standard of living, and produce more wealth than any other country. Thanks for respecting my patriotism with your use of the term "redneck", I wouldn't want to see what you'd say if you disrespected my patriotism. But I don't disrespect any other nation or people who think America is not the best. That's their opinion.
  • 2. I understand what "liberal" means. I was referring to American liberalism. The free market should not be limited or regulated. To do so would mean that it is not a free market but a state run/controlled market. American conservatism seeks to preserve the free market, capitalism, and limited but effective constitutional government. It seeks to preserve individual liberty as well. Social "justice" is unjust. Wealth redistribution is theft.
  • 3. It is good that America is not a democracy because majority rule often leads to mob rule. Also, when the majority discovers it can vote itself rewards from the public treasury, anarchy is soon to follow. It is best that America is a constitutional republic because the rights of the individual are recognized as God given and protected by the law. God given rights cannot rightly be taken away by any man because God is the ultimate authority. Those in our country (liberals) who try to deceive people into thinking we are a democracy are actually those seeking to rule over them. Grouping individuals together into a mass (the masses) makes them easier to control. Promises of wealth and government rewards make the people dependant on the state. When that happens the people will keep reelecting their masters into power. Conservatives seek to dispel these notions. We seek to empower the individual to earn their own wealth and keep as much of it as possible to save, invest, or give as they please. We encourage the individual to be self-reliant. The term "Gerrymandering" was invented in order to address the problem of it and make it illegal. So, then what, are you admitting we were never a democracy? We agree then. Corruption can affect even the individual, which is why the American system seeks to spread the power out to as many people as possible and the have checks and balances so no one person or branch of government can abuse power.
  • 4. So then you want an example of something that is inherently evil? Murder. That is, the intentional killing of someone who does not deserve said fate. Bhelen arranged for his eldest brother to be killed. He will also try to murder Harrowmont should he be denied the crown. That is inherently evil, but those with power and no morality will say that it's just a tool at their disposal, and why not kill such people if one has the power to do so? If you need more examples, slavery, rape, theft, slander, etc.
  • 5. The caste system makes it difficult, but not impossible. Sigrun found a way despite being casteless. Oghren found a way despite being a warrior who was banned from using weapons. Voldrik and Dworkin found a way. Gorim found a way. Bohdan and Sandal found a way. Dagna found a way.

I argue that it wasn't Orzammar's traditions that led them to that state. Rather it was corruption within the society that did so. Failure to adhere to traditions and law. In theory the caste system is workable. The intention of this is to focus those who are skilled on what they are skilled at. So those born to warriors will remain in an area of expertise that their parents are proficient at. Of course there are tons of problems with this set up, but I think if these problems were the cause of Orzammar's decline then such decline would have already taken place long before this, or it would not have worked initially. According to the game there was a time when this system worked, but in the game we see that the rules aren't always followed. Nobles are supposed to represent the people and regulate the laws on their behalf and at their benefit, but instead the nobles fight for their own wealth and power. The noble houses also control warrior houses, when in fact the assembly as a whole should authorize the warrior caste with the king leading them. The main problem is that there are no consequences for such corrupt activities. Oghren was stripped of his house and barred from using weapons, essentially making him a toothless tiger. Why can't such punishments be dealt to nobles should they fail in their duties? Again, this is the corruption of the system, not the system itself, and Bhelen is one of the primary offenders of this, as I pointed out already.
Of course we choose who we are. Are you saying we have no freewill? If people are not responsible for their actions then what is the point of having law? Why strive for a civil society if we don't expect people to choose the right and moral path? I'm not quick to judge, but after proper consideration I DO judge. As should we all.
I answered the question of tradition above, but to answer the other questions, I see that Orzammar needs positive/productive change. The problem is that there is no evidence that Bhelen represents such a change. All evidence points to Harrowmont, as he demonstrates moral actions, respect for the law, and the virtue of prudence. In addition, Harrowmont is much older and wiser than Bhelen. Therefore Bhelen has plenty of time to learn, mature, and prove himself worthy. Just because I pick Harrowmont doesn't mean that Bhelen can't become king at some later date when Harrowmont retires or passes away, EXCEPT for the fact that Bhelen stages a coup and is cut down in the process. That is his own fault.
I have agreed that good can come from a benevolent dictator, but this is outweighed by the precedent a dictatorship sets. You have to look at things in the long term. Funny that you reference long dead groups. Where is Roman Empire now? Where are the Mongols now? What matters are results. What are the results of these dictatorships? And what justice existed for the people under the thumbs of these dictators?
Then I suppose you must also admire Loghain for his plot to eliminate Cailin and his usurpation of the crown. Whether people step outside into nature's brutal elements or not should be up to them, and for that one must have freedom. That means having no master to dictate where to go or what to do.
That is a very odd justification for Bhelen, don't you think? He commits atrocities so he can become king, and he becomes king so he can steal more power, and he steals more power to absolve himself from his prior atrocities. Leaving the epilogue info out of this, don't you see any problem in making a dwarf such as this the king of Orzammar? What makes you think he will rule Orzammar in a positive way? Yeah, Bhelen took the chance, and don't forget what happens if the character sides with Harrowmont. Bhelen is slain along with the rest of his usurpers. He'll lose it all.
Also, I have a very hard time believing that you would approve of such actions if they were taken against you. Would you be okay with some criminal busting into your house, stealing your things, or harming your family simply because that criminal has the power to do so?

  • 6. Mmm, no, Socrates is quoted as saying "I am a citizen of the world". Home is not a difficult concept for Americans. We have rights protecting our homes after all. The aborigines were not the first ones here either, and even so their homeland was not destroyed. It was used. A discussion for another time. My history is in America. I am a native. I was born here, as were my parents, as were their parents. Besides, if your standard is that countries with immigrants are not true homelands then all countries would fall under that category, as humanity is believed to have originated somewhere on the continent of Africa.

No, I believe the U.S.A. is superior because it is better than every other nation on Earth. No I don't know how many immigrants and fugitives your country gets. I don't even know what country you're from. You've never mentioned it. Actually we did get Canadians coming over to work and then going back to their home with their pay since our currency was higher than theirs. This has dropped significantly though since our currencies are almost equal now. American attracts many people from all walks of life because of our freedoms, opportunities, and standard of living. It isn't just poor people coming here or wanting to come here. We also had a problem with illegal Irish and illegal Italian immigrants a while ago.
I also prefer that Lebanon was safe and free like America. Of course I want America's ideals to spread throughout the whole world. Who wouldn't? I mean, who except radical dictators that is. I think some would return, but most would stay. Our Muslim immigrants don't want to go back. Heck, even the terrorists we captured and threw in Guantanamo would rather live there than go back to their "home".

  • 7. The founding fathers were not rebels. They were pioneers. A rebel seeks to overthrow the authority he lives under. A pioneer seeks a new place to live. The founders established a new place to live and a new law to live under. They then defended their sovereignty against the British who sought to conquer what they had created. Always fun to watch a non-American tell me about American history. :)

@4Ferelden Orzammar is dealing with the darkspawn threat already. The swift action we're talking about is one regarding dwarven society. Direction can be changed quickly if it is needed, especially in the case of survival.

No, I haven't heard of that expression. It doesn't make sense. I don't seek to punish the world. Only those who are guilty. You think Bhelen deserves to live after the lives he took? He doesn't deserve to live let alone become king. The Bush administration's (and Congress') War on Terror was a response to an attack upon America's civilians if you'll recall. That is not murder. That is self-defense. Bhelen is not a harmless butterfly in a field. He is a lion in an office cubicle. He has reason to commit more atrocities so long as he has a goal, and dictators are good at having goals if nothing else. There are not as many Harrowmont supporters. They fall in line behind Bhelen if he is made king. Bhelen's supporters continuously rebel against Harrowmont regardless. Bhelen can handle it? You mean Bhelen can slaughter his own people while Harrowmont can't.

Bhelen reached power because of the player's actions. Otherwise Bhelen is just the head of a gang, similar to the carta. Bhelen would grant special rights to his supporters, but those who oppose him would be punished. This is proven in the epilogue when he abolishes the assembly. The decline in the dwarven population has nothing to do with the opportunities that are available to the casteless. My point is that the Legion is on the verge of being recognized as a legitimate caste. If Bhelen can make the casteless warriors then it means they already have the potential to be warriors without his direction. Besides, you're forgetting that the Legion of the Dead started out the same way the other casteless did. Measures can be taken to ensure against becoming a ghoul or broodmother, such as fighting to the death.

Out of touch with reality? Then what is reality? Sitting there and wasting away? You can't just sit there and wait for someone to help you. They aren't allowed to work in the city, that doesn't mean they can't work to improve Dust Town. The Legion affords its armor because of all the darkspawn they kill and treasure they find. Plus, they pass things down to new Legionnaires.

What each candidate would like to do is the basis for the playable character's decision. The point is that the character can't possibly know the end results. Even if you want to go by epilogues, Harrowmont's rule is still better, as it preserves the law. Bhelen's rule abolishes the law and establishes tyranny. Besides, the epilogue is what happens in absence of Awakening and Golems of Amgarrak. Those games likely change the course of events.

My point there is that the golems could be turned against Ferelden. Therefore preservation of the Anvil of the Void is a risk to Ferelden. And don't forget that the idea of using golems to fight the darkspawn was tried already and failed because of the cost that came with it. Believe it! (talk) 19:58, May 30, 2012 (UTC)

You think Bhelen deserves to live after the lives he took? He doesn't deserve to live let alone become king.

You have completely missed my point, which is that killing Bhelen in this scenario would involve hurting and killing largely unrelated people like his guards, which in itself is injustice to those people and their friends and relatives. Under your logic, it would therefore be just for them to kill you, which, if they succeed, will likely result in killing other Wardens/party members/etc. Then the friends/relatives of those Wardens would have the right to kill your attackers. Again, their success would likely involve killing more unrelated people alongside of those responsible and then ... Basically, the cycle would logically continue until there is hardly anyone left alive, which is why the world would go blind in that expression. In essence, all revenge stories function purely because of the [[1]].

This is also reason why, under your logic, the Bush US government should also have been killed, because the overwhelming majority of the people killed by your "self-defense" have not been involved in the 9/11 attacks. This whole "dead must avenged for justice" idea is exceedingly hypocritical and it usually smarter to just forget about it and go with the scenario that kills less people, which would be Bhelen. Bhelen is at least partially justified at killing his own kind since it ends up in less people dying then if he did nothing. Besides, Harrowmont is certainly capable of killing his own kind: this exactly what happens when the Casteless riot against him, although he only succeeds if he has golems under his control.

Measures can be taken to ensure against becoming a ghoul or broodmother, such as fighting to the death.

Really? So you think that all those broodmothers are the result of women willingly giving themselves up to darkspawn?! There is nothing particularly difficult in overwhelming a resisting opponent when you are several times stronger, armoured, proficient with your weapon (i.e. can block attacks) and have the numerical advantage, which is certainly the case every time ghouls and broodmothers are captured. Even the trained warrior like Leliana can be overwhelmed if 5-7 hurlocks lock shields while others grab from behind (sorry if this sounds a lot like rape, but I REALLY don't want to go over this again.)

When I said you were out of touch with reality, I meant your assumption that Casteless are capable of improving their current position from where they stand, but they just don't want to. This is an incredibly arrogant and patronising view, because you effectively presume that you somehow know better then GENERATIONS of Dust Town inhabitants and that none of them want their place to be better.

You are mistaken in regards to the Legion of the Dead, too. They can't find any more treasure since they are effectively forced into a stalemate where they have to fight over the same caverns over and over again, while you can only loot it once or twice. You can't really earn money by killing darkspawn, either, since no-one besides Grey Wardens would use or wear tainted items, therefore making all their equipment worthless. In fact, older caverns might have all items rendered worthless because of the taint. Finally, there is no way equipment from older Legionniaries would ever make up for the sudden influx of Casteless recruits you want, namely because all Legionnaires are supposed to die fighting darkspawn, who would gleefully strip down any corpse left behind.

Finally, your point about golems is completely voided by the rest of my argument. There are tens to hundreds of thousands of darkspawn around in the Deep Roads, and only a few have time to exit to the surface at the beginning of the Blight, which is why it is so important to kill the Archdemon early. Plus, there are hundreds of them born every year, who are ready to fight within 3 months to one year at most. This is why not even the initial golems have been enough to destroy the darkspawn. However, this does not mean that they aren't needed now: they would make the difference between more stalemate and wiping the darkspawn out, or at the very least doubling the dwarven domain. In short, golems used against Ferelden is ridiculously far-fetched when the sheer number of the darkspawn (as well as the dwarves' commitment to their ancestral tunnels) is taken into account. 4Ferelden (talk) 09:46, May 31, 2012 (UTC)

Believe it, I am starting to think that it is impossibly to talk with you as you seem to have your own private conception of reality.
I will try to pinpoint a few point where you become out of touch with reality, most of all to show it to others as if my suspicions are correct you will be unable to understand even this.
I called you a redneck because in this instance I actually do not want to insult patriotic Americans by comparing them to you and your views.
Reality argument
1) America is not the richest country in the world. GDP per capita, is the most accurate way of measuring wealth between nations. In no statistics ever measured have America taken the first place:
This wikipedia page shows three different institutions measurement of GDP per capita: [[2]]
And this is a link of a statistic your own government have gathered: [[3]]
2) America was founded by English, Franch, Dutch and Spanish settlers. England won a couple of wars against the Dutch and the Franch which gave them almost complete control of the continent, or at least the eastcostal areas, but that is of lesser importance. What is important is that there were order and law in America before the rebellion started. That rebellion became a revolution, and that revolution ended up with you throwing out the laws of your overlord England, in the same way as the French revolution toppled a monarchy.
America AND its allies won the war and their independence with the treaty of Paris 1783. their allies were Spain, French and the Dutch republic, they joined the war because they had all lost territory to England and their intervention was instrumental to your victory.
In fact France participation and determination to help you gain freedom from England ruined the nation coursing a national bankrupts which in turn sparked the French revolution, but that is another story, point being USA wouldn’t exist without France.
I do not understand why I have to teach you about your own history, but if you cannot even understand this, but if you cannot even understand this, then you will not be able to understand anything at all.
As far as I understand it, you belive that law and order, no matter how unjust it is, is better then to rebel ageist it. There are two kinds of rebels, and you reject the legitimacy of them all.
1) Rebels that seek independence from an overlord state.
2) Rebels that seek to replace the government of their state with another but maintain the states unity.
In the first castigatory we have the rebels from the American Revolution and the American civil war, in the second we have rebels from the French revolution and the English civil war.
Whether a revolution is justified or not is almost impossible to determine especially in hindsight, but it seems almost universally true that all revolutions that have been a success have been praised an almost all revolutions that have been a failure have been scorned.
Your beliefs, believe it
I understand that you do not believe in the concept of wealth redistribution.
I do not quite understand why, but I think that it is either because
A) You believe in the liberal conception of the minimal state, that must be strictly neutral in all matters, and that it does not have a duty to its citizens beyond that of insuring their liberty and safety.
B) You are a proponent of the more radical thoughts of antiegalitarianism, that poor people deserves to be poor and rich people deserves to be rich, and that it is wrong to help people in need as they will then not need to help themselves.
From point B follows that you will be against any kind of charity, from point A follows that only voluntary philanthropic ways of wealth redistribution are acceptable, as people do not have a duty to help the poor or that the duty of the individuals do not transcend to the duty of the state.
In order to be more clear on what you mean, just so I can try to understand in, in the off chance that your opinions and world view are merely extremely alien from mine and not just the product of a deranged mind.
  • 1) Do you believe in a justification for military draft?
  • 2) Do you believe men have duties?
  • 3) Do you believe men have rights?
  • 4) Do you believe states have duties?
  • 5) Do you believe states have rights?
  • 6) Do you believe states have the right to enforce men to do their duties?
I want to appoligise to everyone that think this have become a little too off subject, and I promise that if no fruitful result have come with the next post I will drop this.
I do this as one last attempt to try and understand the user “believe it”, as I am starting to find it vary difficult to follow his thoughpattern.-rphb- (talk) 19:01, June 2, 2012 (UTC)

Added by pplr June, 2013

I apologize for not using the wikia better and resurrecting this but I noticed some points were still missing from this thread.

Just to say it: A big point-both the epilogue and the in game hints as to what it would look like were written by a game designers and storyline makers. They could be wrong if attempted in reality-so we don't know if dwarf society would turn out better with Bhelen or Harrowmont if tried in real life.

That said nobody asks if there is a secret history of dwarf society that the Shaperate keeps quiet about (or may even keep in their records where others can look but do not announce to the bulk of dwarf society in general).

If there is then Bhelen and his father may each look less bad. If you are a noble dwarf but join Bhelen anyway and push him for answers he will mention situations like when a prior dwarf-to-be-king had his brother (the then heir) killed in a Proving by giving his foe secretly poisoned blades.

Bhelen may have known dirty and murderous tricks are used to decide who gets power. This may not be broadcast to most dwarves because it may get them to start questioning how many of their kings where actually dishonorable cut-throats.

Now Bhelen may be lying to make himself look better to you (a kin he framed) or he may know secrets that were held back from you and many dwarves.

His father may have seen a rising brutality (don't forget that provings have gotten bloodier) and decided to support Harrowmont simply because he knew Harrowmont would be too honorable as a person to be brutal-as an individual-to other individuals he knew. The old king (dwarf noble's father) may have wanted less noble on noble violence.

That being said Harrowmont-and the king that choose him-both supported a corrupt and unjust system. Nobles were not nobles because of their ability to be leaders but because of their bloodlines. You can try to teach someone to a good leader if their bloodline makes it likely they will be a leader but you may just end up with a greedy, short-sighted, ruthless, self-absorbed incompetent as king (yes one can be incompetent and ruthless). You may get a lot better (sometimes political elites taught themselves mercy and to learn history to guide themselves and society-not always but sometimes).

Being a ruthless dictator has not always brought a nation forwards-plenty of dictators have ruined their nations and hurt the people under them. Not always but many times.

Correct me if I'm wrong but compare 2 real life nations formerly run by dictators. Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Both were ruled by dictators at one time but Haiti's dictators tried to loot their nation for their own gain (and that of some family members and higher ranking cronies). The Dominican Republic's dictator did some of that but also tried to grow-that is invest in-the nation's economy (improving transportation, healthcare, education, and business investments) while preserving the nation's forests.

Yes the Dominican Republic's dictator made money but didn't totally do so shortsightedly, he made sure forests were not totally cut down but were preserved so wood and other things from them would continue to come into the future. Haiti's dictatorship stripped their forests bare and there are places today where you can guess where the border between the 2 (they are on the same island) because one has trees and the other does not. Also more trees brought less erosion which meant some land and (even more importantly) rivers could be used for other things. Likewise both had corruption/stealing by the elites but the growing of both the economy and government services built the Dominican Republic up while Haiti's leaders often looted Haiti to the point of dysfunction.

The more forward thinking Dominican Republic became the better of the 2 nations over time.

Now the Dominican Republic's last dictator was murderous and was eventually assassinated. A representative democracy with elected presidents took his place since-continuing the Dominican Republic's better standing.

Instead of looking to Roman times to compare Harrowmont and Bhelen I would say use Robert E. Lee for Harrowmont and Fidel Castro (or the less well known Rafael Trujillo) for Bhelen.

Robert E. Lee and Harrowmont were both honorable as individuals but defended awful systems (slavery and caste systems). And were willing to kill or get killed many to do it (just in more official forms like riot suppression or war). BTW there is the argument slavery both dominated the Southern economy pre-Civil War and held it back. When you focus many people's (slaves) daily efforts on picking a plantation owner's cotton you bring great wealth to the plantation owner but kept those people from doing even better things with their time.

Castro and Trujillo both improved their nations in a number of ways. I know they each killed political foes and I do NOT let them off the hook for it but they did positive as well as negative.

I would expect Bhelen to continue to be ruthless into the future but if he was without golems he would have to rely even more on the casteless to support him meaning, by necessity, he would have to protect their new status even more.

As he would probably get them better trained, equipped, and employed than they had ever been before (even if it wouldn't match warrior caste) it would be an improvement. A side effect of this may be improving the capabilities of part of dwarf society for the long term-aiding dwarves in general.

I believe the Assembly had been abolished by a different king before so after Bhelen dies (or gets assassinated) the Assembly would probably come back but the now richer and better armed casteless would be harder to suppress. Some returning soldiers may drown themselves in beer but other ones may pass their training and weapons on as well as use their new wealth to open shops. Dwarf society may bet better after Bhelen rises, does his changes, and dies.

Harrowmont's refusal to look for or gather allies was just stupid.

I'm not going to say dictatorship or oligarchy is better because both are oppressive and would stink to live under. But in this situation only Bhelen seems to be planning for the future.

If you talk to Harrowmont he tells you only criminals and the casteless live in dust town. If you think about it that should tell you *before you have to pick one* that, for all his apparent honor and friendliness to your Grey Warden Harrowmont doesn't care about casteless.

Now they made this hard for a gamer to spot. It was a *lot* easier to spot Bhelen's personal ruthlessness than that of the oppressive oligarchy that wanted to make Harrowmont its figurehead.

Remember the poisoned dwarf noblewoman in the palace (where Bhelen rules), he probably didn't try to poison her but someone else likely did. I suspect the oligarchy had its own ruthless people but had Harrowmont as its figurehead to put on a nicer face. That doesn't make Bhelen less of a murderer. But it may indicate that there is a secret history of ruthlessness in the factions at the top of dwarf society and he is simply the most visible part.

Yes dirty tricks happen in power. If you don't like that don't embrace them but be knowledgeable and watch to better protect against them.

Lets touch on real life once more.

Someone referred to Bush and Gore in 2000. But nobody mentioned that thousands of people who were not felons were put on Florida's felons list improperly before the election and thus couldn't vote. Statistically they were likely to vote for Democrats. So it is quite possible Gore should've received both the popular vote nationally and in Florida. This is a problem for those who want elections to be honest.

Both Republicans and Democrats gerrymandered districts in states where there was 1 party control after a census. That both did it doesn't make it right. That means those who want more honesty and actual rule of law (rule of law that includes justice and is not just written to benefit cronies and campaign contributors) should then watch who is running for office carefully. There are both democrats and republicans who supported non-partisan redistricting (see Iowa). Find them in the primary and push from the other direction if other people in their party try to lead them astray (I've seen both democrats and republicans back off of redistricting reform). If some of the people who read through this discussion are interested in real world politics and don't like Bhelen's dishonesty in the game then don't let it go unnoticed in real life-no matter which party you prefer (and some of the above comments got very partisan).

PS a lot of candidates will not advertise when you cannot trust them or when they will do something dishonest. Voters have to read between the lines and look carefully.

Fortunately or not this a game and we don't know how accurately it would reflect a real life choice. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:28, July 4, 2013

Why bring reality into this? Back onto the topic, my first character I picked Harrowmont because he really does deserve to be king for several reasons but my second character I picked Bhelen and, if you look at the dwarves epilogues when Bhelen is king, it's a lot better. Harrowmont dies, and sometimes the dwarves completely shut off from the world while with Bhelen casteless get a say and trade increases. Ya, he's a jerk (mostly if you play dwarf noble) but he's a lot better for Orzammar, and I try to do whats best for everyone, not one person. So, overall, I always pick Bhelen. Plus, you get an extra quest in DA2! --LilMissUnTalented (talk) 18:24, June 30, 2013 (UTC)

They are both jerks Harrowmont because he support nightmarish traditions and don't give shit nothing more than that ,casteless suffer still and things goes worse maybe he is honorable but certainly not good character,Behlen is jerk too but he is at least jerk who will change something overthrow bad traditions and opens Orzammar.This conflict is more chaos(behlen) vs law (Harrowmont) not evil vs good.I wish i have option for chaotic good character like this guy in tavern who doesn't support casteless system ,so Behlen wins.

Someone, who doesn't traditions is not yet chaotic. That's someone with a different opinion. The world is not one-dimentional nor 2 dimentional, it has far more parameters. (talk) 14:05, July 4, 2013 (UTC)

But someone who don't care about law and tradition is chaotic because lawful part is when someone have them even if they are completely different than in society lawful characters value such things chaotic follow their own and don't let such things let them in way.I think the first thing behlen does after he become king fits to chaotic character perfectly. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:28, July 4, 2013

I've played for both sides multiple times... if u like bloodshed and violence then Bhelan is ideal. I didn't like it that he executed harrowment and his entire dictator type of speech. Also when u play as dwarf noble, Bhelan is your brother who schemes and frames u for another murder. :S While harrowment tries to lighten your sentence and believes u as he is the king's old friend. H makes a more merciful king. He doesn't order B to die on his coronation, yet the other will scream and have a riot. AND I KILLED BRANKA yeayy! playing as warrior elf, Oghren, wynn and zev. Her things are awesome! (talk) 07:16, July 20, 2013 (UTC)ilkar

A reminder to users to please sign your posts using four tildes (~~~~) or the signature button (Button sig.png). Please also try to keep your posts as on-topic as possible. Thanks! Chantry symbol King Cousland | Talk   20:26, July 20, 2013 (UTC)

Really,there are a lot of crappy off the topic bullshit explanations and arguments goin' on in this topic. Drop that and get on with it. It's a really wonderful game to be enjoyed more than once. Appreciate it, love it, use your own instincts and judgements to make those in-game choices. Actually there's no right or wrong decisions, it all depends on the character you're playing - its personality and perspective that you've created; and for each play-through the perspective will vary too.

Regarding the query of the original poster, let me show you with some examples. 1.My Dwarven commoner supported Bhelen as obvious from the fact that Bhelen cares for my sister Rica.She too loves him & is bearing his child. So for the sake of my sister & the unborn child I supported Bhelen. Or you could do the other way And offend the sister & ruin your relationship with her. 2.My Dwarven noble again,was determined to pay back Bhelen in his own coin.So he initially pretended to forget the past & renew the brotherly bond, but then backstabbed him & let him have a taste of betrayal & treachery.Again, you yourself can let go of it, forgive him(not recommended),be practical & pragmatic and opt for him. 3.My female elf mage spent all her life in the circle tower,she knew next to nothing about any politics & societal upheaval. She was never pragmatic,a bit softy so she chose Harrowmont cause Bhelen's campaign didn't appeal to her due to all those document forgery and stuff like that. 4.My elf archer had a dark persona. He believed in deceit,yet he was practical,never cared about any culture or society and their own problems.He initially went to Harrowmont, but found to be a bit weak who won't be able to break free from their orthodox Dwarven system. He thought Bhelen to be more far-sighted and able ruler.So he helped Bhelen. But remember, you can go for any choice. Just try the one,that suits the character you're playing and the situation likewise. Bonn777 (talk) 12:12, July 23, 2013 (UTC)Bonn777