Lol the reason I consistently went for 9 DIP rulers was .. because you said so in this AAR lol. Awell after I formed Germany I changed my ruler to a MIL 9 one and beated Austria. He then crowned himself the one and only King of the Germans and transformed from a Merchant Republic Germany to an Absolute Monarchy. Now we enjoy piece and prosperety whilst mopping up the last few independent German city states. I however have to admit that I wasnt nearly so gentlemanly as you were, even though I set my infamy limit at 8, I did vasalannex a lot when I was still the Hansa.
Hope u get a core on Franken soon, then the real fun can begin.