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Bane of Empires
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Sorry, I have to remain in disagreement with you on this.

First, when it comes to the reputation of the Thousand Sons in regards to the rest of the Imperium we have next to no evidence that the planets they brought into Compliance were disposed against them after the fact (anymore so than other Legions that is). I doubt it's an accident that we know for a fact that people were terrified of the Night Lords and the World Eaters, but that no such mention is made for the Thousand Sons.

To this, I'd add the purely theoretical: Astartes warfare has been repeatedly qualified as shocking, extreme, and devastating in nature. We're talking about orbital bombardments that are equivalent to nuclear detonations or to fire bombings of extreme scale, Titans and super-heavy tanks that can level buildings with every strike, and Space Marines who dispatch their opponents in the most gruesome ways: their chainswords eviscerate and amputate, their bolters explode bodies from the inside out, their punches and kicks collapse torso and skull alike, etc. What am I getting at with this? Absent truly obscene displays of psychic power (and we don't get to see this even in the Shrike campaign, in A Thousand Sons, which we know to have been heavily contested), I sincerely doubt that the overt abilities used by the Thousand Sons (telekinesis, pyromancy, etc.) would have made a significant impact on conquered populations - save, of course, for those with the most virulent anti-psyker traditions.
Yes, and despite all of that, there was some measure of general acceptance that most of the Legiones Astartes were vital to the war effort and were honourable warriors and unleashed their ferocity only as a last resort. However, regardless of what the individual worlds whom Magnus brought into compliance (and thus had direct dealings with the XV Legion) thought, the vast majority of the Imperium hated and feared psykers, there is no escaping that fact. The Thousand Sons were a Legion of psykers whom even several of the Primarchs condemned, and eventually the Emperor brought to trial and sanction.

I don't think it matters exactly what the Thousand Sons did - whether they produced "truly obscene displays of psychic power" or not, people perceived them as being witches dabbling in sorcery and thus I still think they would have produced similar amounts of (if not more) "bad PR" than the World Eaters or Night Lords.

Second, the Council of Nikaea was predicated on the ideological differences between a minority of the Primarchs. There's a huge difference between a parallel to an ecumenical council with hostile overtones and being recalled to Terra to be relieved of command. Before Magnus breached the wards of the Imperial Palace, there was no talk of sanctions as with the other two legions we're talking about.
Actually, there was. The Night Lords and World Eaters were recalled to Terra to, maybe, be relieved of command or otherwise sanctioned. Yet the Thousand Sons (before Magnus was discovered) were apparently (rumoured) close to being purged. For example, in Ahriman's words:

"They [Mortartion, Corax & Dorn] feared what we could do, and spread their lies to anyone who would listen that we were witches practising unclean sorcery. Little did any of them realise they were condemning the very powers that allowed them to travel between the stars or spread the malicious rumour-mongering."

"...but more and more of us were falling prey to it [the flesh change] and the voices of our persecutors were growing ever more strident. There was even talk of disbanding us and expunging us from Imperial history."

From re-reading the passage in A Thousand Sons, it doesn't seem that the Flesh Change debacle was played out privately or in secret, the wider Imperium was seemingly aware of it and condemned the Legion at every opportunity (apparently not helped by "rumour-mongering" and people of influence spreading such rumours to "anyone who would listen"). It's not necessarily about exactly what the Thousand Sons did or whether they produced obscene/enviable displays of psychic power, they were a Legion of witches who had almost been wiped out due to warp-corruption and who drew huge amounts of condemnation along the way. People hated and feared them because of what they were, regardless of what they did. Thus people's perceptions of them, I would argue, created "bad PR" for the Great Crusade.

For example, a newly compliant world who has just been rescued from the psychic depredations of Old Night joyfully embraces the Imperial Truth and the Emperor's rule. Yet, they learn that one of the eighteen Legions that are spearheading this Crusade to free humanity are themselves a coven of psykers, who this world (and indeed most of the Imperium) perceives to have caused Old Night in the first place. I imagine in this scenario, the Thousand Sons would have been condemned to a greater extent (especially after the Flesh Change debacle which effectively proved that they were unstable and corruptible) than the rumoured atrocities/genocide committed by two of the other Legions. The issue of witches and psykers was one much more prominent given the events of the Age of Strife than of a band of warriors trying to slip the leash and commit a few genocides here and there. Most human worlds in the galaxy had only recently suffered because of rampant psykers (or at least they perceived to have suffered because of psykers - because they blamed the Age of Strife on them) and thus I would suggest this was a much greater issue and cause for "bad PR".
 

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The "Trial and Sanction" is according to Magnus, he sees the castigation as a foregone conclusion; Nikaea was meant to be discussion into it, but his own bullish stubborn ways didn't help him.

Yes, there was politicing done by Mortarion et al, but Nikaea was, in theory, done with good intentions. I think if the Emperor could have foreseen a way in which Psykers could be used safely, he'd have done so. But he's effectively told a drug user to stop doing drugs; drug user said "no, drugs are ace, look I can fly", and then he realised that drug user was a lost cause, and would likely die of an overdose/get possessed by Chaos.

Have you ever seen a girlfriend leave a controlling, abusive boyfriend? Or if they, they continue to choose that same kind of guy? Have you ever seen a drug user (deep end, habitual, reliant) voluntarily give up their "dependence" on it?

The Emperor chose to nip it in the bud, because Magnus was the naughty teenager who could not be trusted.



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Because a father's fallible? I'm no t saying that the Horus Heresy was the greatest tale of Love and family ever created, but the Primarch's were the Emperor's Sons, and he loved them a great deal. He was prepared to give Horus the chance at Redemption (or so far, that's the current tale; later Heresy novels should expand on why he didn't just obliterate Horus at the earliest opportunity during the final battle) even after all he had caused; the Emperor was not infallible and believed he could still turn his Son's to good; indeed his very ideal of a future required his Sons to all play their parts.

It seems harsh, but as an NCO, you know yourself that you'd have some more capable at doing some jobs than other; Land Nav, Field-routine, stag, etc. You might not like the guy, but you'd need him to do his job.

Magnus was loyal to the Emperor, in a way similar to how Lorgar was loyal to the Emperor. But when he started to flex his fatherly muscles, and said "stop smoking that shit it's bad for you", Magnus initially followed, but then broke that rule. Drugs are possibly a bad analogy as it's not useful.

Think instead about playing with matches/fire

Emperor says don't put your hand in the fire.
Magnus asks why?
Emperor says trust me.
Magnus does at first, but then gets pissed off, who is he to tell me what to do, because fire makes me nice and warm, so does it in secret.
Then winter comes, and the Emperor gets cold, so Magnus makes a nice big fire, which nearly burns down what little shelter the Emperor/Imperium had. Emperor gets mad, and sends his dog to bring Magnus home and give him a little spanking - although I personally question the choice of Legion; but Magnus runs away and hates Daddy, because Daddy was cruel to him.



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That's the funny thing about PR, you don't actually need to do damage in order to get bad PR. Or do good to get good PR.

It's all about perceptions.
Exactly. And while we have concrete evidence of the perceptions both within and without the Legiones Astartes regarding the Night Lords and the World Eaters, we have a quote by a single emotional individual that is clearly exaggerated for effect.

Yes, and despite all of that, there was some measure of general acceptance that most of the Legiones Astartes were vital to the war effort and were honourable warriors and unleashed their ferocity only as a last resort. However, regardless of what the individual worlds whom Magnus brought into compliance (and thus had direct dealings with the XV Legion) thought, the vast majority of the Imperium hated and feared psykers, there is no escaping that fact.
And yet we don't see this hatred and fear manifesting at any level even remotely matching that which was reserved for the Night Lords and the World Eaters.

My personal theory of this is that even the idea that large segments of the Imperium knew about the special powers of the Thousand Sons is exaggerated. I have no doubt this was common knowledge among the Imperial Army and Navy personnel that followed the XV Legion. I have no doubt that a number of high-ranking commanders from other Expeditionary Fleets, who had direct contact with the XV Legion, also knew about this. I have no doubt that rumors of this trickled down among various regiments, ships, etc. I seriously doubt that such information was in any way a common commodity, though. We know it wasn't anywhere near as common as "The World Eaters are frothing genocidal butchers who will kill everyone on a planet that resists" or "The Night Lords are sadistic murderers who torture and skin alive innocents just to make examples to anyone who would resist". We know this because the behavior displayed to those two legions is never used with the Thousand Sons.

Actually, there was. The Night Lords and World Eaters were recalled to Terra to, maybe, be relieved of command or otherwise sanctioned. Yet the Thousand Sons (before Magnus was discovered) were apparently (rumoured) close to being purged. For example, in Ahriman's words:

"They [Mortartion, Corax & Dorn] feared what we could do, and spread their lies to anyone who would listen that we were witches practising unclean sorcery. Little did any of them realise they were condemning the very powers that allowed them to travel between the stars or spread the malicious rumour-mongering."

"...but more and more of us were falling prey to it [the flesh change] and the voices of our persecutors were growing ever more strident. There was even talk of disbanding us and expunging us from Imperial history."
The former doesn't represent a consensus, though - far from it. I could just as easily argue that those three and Russ were a minority opinion that opposed a project that originally had the Emperor's blessing. I could argue that, just as the Emperor's acceptance of psykers (Astropaths) and mutants (Navigators) led to at least tacit acceptance of those groups among mainstream Humanity, so did the Emperor's acceptance of battle-psyker Space Marines ensure the majority of the Imperial Army and Navy accepted the Thousand Sons as well.

And the latter is referring to a different time altogether. The Night Lords and World Eaters were facing sanctions and worse, and were not looking to recover from that. The Thousand Sons were facing being wiped out at a time when their numbers were already being exterminated by the flesh-change. When Magnus reversed that, the threat went away.

From re-reading the passage in A Thousand Sons, it doesn't seem that the Flesh Change debacle was played out privately or in secret, the wider Imperium was seemingly aware of it and condemned the Legion at every opportunity (apparently not helped by "rumour-mongering" and people of influence spreading such rumours to "anyone who would listen").
You'll have to help me with some citations, man. I'm already facing the daunting project of re-reading the whole series to make sure I'm keeping all the context in mind with the latest releases. I can't afford to jump into the middle of the series right now! :biggrin:

For example, a newly compliant world who has just been rescued from the psychic depredations of Old Night joyfully embraces the Imperial Truth and the Emperor's rule. Yet, they learn that one of the eighteen Legions that are spearheading this Crusade to free humanity are themselves a coven of psykers, who this world (and indeed most of the Imperium) perceives to have caused Old Night in the first place.
But here you're arguing that a hypothetical somehow equates to (or even exceeds) what the Night Lords and World Eaters were doing, compliance after compliance. You can't escape from the fact that what those two legions did was bad enough that planets that they had a reputation and received a response from potential victims that is never attributed to the Thousand Sons.

I imagine in this scenario, the Thousand Sons would have been condemned to a greater extent (especially after the Flesh Change debacle which effectively proved that they were unstable and corruptible) than the rumoured atrocities/genocide committed by two of the other Legions.
That's apples and oranges, though. The Emperor was prepared to bring them back and lock them up because their bodies were turning on them, not because of what they were doing. The flesh-change would have been their executioner, not the Emperor. By contrast, the Emperor was absolutely willing to take out Konrad Curze, would have had to take absolutely extreme measures to undo the catastrophic moral degeneration of the Night Lords, and would almost certainly have been willing to see killed all those World Eaters with the Butcher's Nails if they couldn't be removed.
 

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You mean get fooled by the lies of Chaos, don't you? It is obvious to the omniscient observer i.e. us that he is being played for a fool. It is his ego and pride that he make him think he has discovered "truth"
its truth because the Emperor insisted that there was no gods, but in fact there are, and he even used their help to create the primarchs.
 

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its truth because the Emperor insisted that there was no gods, but in fact there are, and he even used their help to create the primarchs.
I don't honestly ever remember reading that. Where is it stated?

And Chaos is... Chaos. Chaos lies; the gods may just be extremely powerful daemons. They are only gods because they call themselves gods.

The Eldar have "gods", and yet they were created by the Old Ones, so how can they have gods, unless they refer to those ones in a manner to Olympian/Hellenic pantheons, in which they were allegorical myths intended to scare children and a naive populace into a more profitable lifestyle, giving them a reason to do things etc.



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I don't honestly ever remember reading that. Where is it stated?

And Chaos is... Chaos. Chaos lies; the gods may just be extremely powerful daemons. They are only gods because they call themselves gods.

The Eldar have "gods", and yet they were created by the Old Ones, so how can they have gods, unless they refer to those ones in a manner to Olympian/Hellenic pantheons, in which they were allegorical myths intended to scare children and a naive populace into a more profitable lifestyle, giving them a reason to do things etc.
Erebus hints at it to Horus in False Gods that the Emperor dealt with the chaos gods in order to create the primarchs, and so does Ingrethel the Ascended to Lorgar. As well the daemon speaking to Corax in that shortie book which's name in eludes me. Daemons and chaos are liars, but they are not above speaking the 'truth', or fragments or shadows of it when it benefits them. But as said in the past, chaotic entities are not the most exactly credible truth witnesses.

But the Night Lords have one of the most apt nomers for the Imperium, 'The Throne of Lies'. If we are to take Mechanicum for Truth, then the Emperor founded the Grand Lie of Mars in the distant past, planning for the rise of their technophile cult in the far future. Lies upon lies upon lies, in geological strata.

It is little wonder that the Seekers of Truth became insane, turning into the Scourged when they heard all the lies the Imperium was built upon.
http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/The_Scourged
 

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So a man following daemons orders and a daemon itself.

While I'm not saying the Emperor didn't lie about things, I just love how quick people are to defend chaos and say "look, the emperor lied", when all we have is self serving propaganda for the daemons.

It's one of those big "well shit" things that the 40K universe is founded on; who the two missing legions are, were the primarchs forged by chaos, how ork technology works, and why Horus was chosen as warmaster outside of "because i said so".



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Bane of Empires
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So a man following daemons orders and a daemon itself.

While I'm not saying the Emperor didn't lie about things, I just love how quick people are to defend chaos and say "look, the emperor lied", when all we have is self serving propaganda for the daemons.

It's one of those big "well shit" things that the 40K universe is founded on; who the two missing legions are, were the primarchs forged by chaos, how ork technology works, and why Horus was chosen as warmaster outside of "because i said so".
I think what they were referring to originally was not the Emperor's (supposed) hypocrisy concerning treating with daemons/gods, but actually his denial of their existence.

That is, after all, the main revelation that Lorgar discovered during his pilgrimage. As the conversation between Argel Tal and Cyrene went:

 

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I think the Heresy was a failure of trust, faith, and planning. Trust because the Emperor should have shared his vision with more of his sons to let them know what the hell was going on. Faith because the Emperor thought that his with holding this information was would be beneficial as well as leaving his favored son in charge of a group of emotionally maladjusted demigods. Planning because this whole Heresy shows that with one guy being turned, the whole Imperium was fucked. This guy was on the verge of building a new future for humanity. He'd already dealt with an episode requiring primarchs to get sanctioned so them being infallible wasn't a thought. For a genius it seems like a pretty simple idea to not let something so important be taken over so easily.
 

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I think the Heresy was a failure of trust, faith, and planning. Trust because the Emperor should have shared his vision with more of his sons to let them know what the hell was going on. Faith because the Emperor thought that his with holding this information was would be beneficial as well as leaving his favored son in charge of a group of emotionally maladjusted demigods. Planning because this whole Heresy shows that with one guy being turned, the whole Imperium was fucked. This guy was on the verge of building a new future for humanity. He'd already dealt with an episode requiring primarchs to get sanctioned so them being infallible wasn't a thought. For a genius it seems like a pretty simple idea to not let something so important be taken over so easily.
Perhaps that was his intention in the first place? The Emperor cannot be the big daddy that's around forever, and if this is what Humanity will become in order to survive, is it even worth preserving?
 

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For the preservation of the race, humanity in terms of warp use are at best pre-pubescent children. Very few who understand the warp remain loyal to the Emperor and humanity. So his presences is still very necessary.
 
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