So the Syndicate is not the Orion government in current Trek Lit? I've seen several other sources say the Syndicate was their government, and I always thought that seemed a bit odd.
There does seem to be some confusion regarding that point - in fact, it seems to me that the 22nd century Orion Syndicate mentioned in Enterprise
and the 24th century Syndicate in DS9, etc, are two different organizations, or at least it makes sense to me to consider them such. The 22nd century version is (I think) presented at least implicitly as a government or central authority of some kind for the Orion species, while the 24th century Syndicate clearly isn't. Personally, I like to think that as the Federation grew more powerful, it and the other major powers started cracking down on Orion piracy, slaving etc, and the organization of clans that formed the old Syndicate disbanded or something - only for oportunistic criminals to "reimagine" it as a more subtle crime cartel operating within the nations that shoved the old Syndicate aside. Maybe the name was up for grabs and they considered themselves the successor to the old ways? In The Lost Era: Well of Souls,
the Syndicate is described as "fledgling", just starting to put pressure on established criminal organizations and push them off the galactic stage. I think it's all-round easier if we think of them as two different organizations, though maybe deliberately connected in spirit via the name.
(As an aside, I don't like it how organizations often seem to last for centuries in Trek, with the same name and purpose. I loved how Vulcan's Heart
offered an origin for the Tal Shiar; however, later Trek stories have the organization under that name being a part of the Romulan Empire since at least the 22nd century. A bit disappointing).
EDIT: Oh, I missed Christopher's