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Tibby's Graphics and Grab-Bag Thread.

These Fair Shores: The Locust Years (1938-1946)
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    The History of the United Kingdom of
    Great Britain, Ireland and Hong Kong

    The Locust Years (1938-1946)

    British history after the Third Union can be summed up quite succinctly, as in 1889 and All That (the thrilling sequel to 1066 and All That) as “Napoleon and debris”. British history classes love to cover the many Napoleons and how they all affected British foreign policy, culminating in the Continental War.

    Like any good movie, they end just as the final victory is gained. Everything that was sacrificed for that victory, the classes tend to cover fairly quickly, as if unwillingly and begrudgingly. But one cannot separate Britain of the 2020s from its past. The doors of the old House of Commons were broken not once, but twice. The first in glory and revolution in 1889, the second in destitution and ruin in 1931.

    King George VI had a high task ahead of him, to declare victory in war while reassuring his people that the peace would be bright.

    As the sun rose on a broken kingdom triumphant, the King wished to speak to his people. He was already known for his steely resolve, but his talent in public speaking was still green and untested. The speech would have to one of a victorious leader, but not too arrogant. He still could remember seeing the ruins of Parliament and having to flee Buckingham Palace. He still could remember receiving the news of his father dying. That was an unpleasant surprise, but even more unpleasant was when he was acclaimed King while at Balmoral. He believed that his elder brother could ride out the war. After all, he was young still, and could have had children.

    But history was to end Edward IX and make George VI. The abrupt news combined with his stutter meant that the first speech was to put it charitable – average. It was through his actions that the public would be won over. Even though his father and brother perished, he refused to flee. It was his duty to lead his people through their darkest hour. And it was the darkest hour. The clouds always rang of the sound of bombs, France amplified the bombings as the tide of war turned against them.

    The Tempest, as Britain called the on and off French bombings during the Great Continental War, took its toll on many British cities.

    He knew his people suffered. He knew they still suffered. Many cities bombed to ruins. He even was appalled to hear that the Bristol Corporation went so far to declare that Bristolians would have to eat insects and other vermin to survive. To have a triumphant and joyful speech was right out. Triumphant yes. But humble. Consulting with the BBC writers and his own gut instinct, he worked out what would go down in history as the “Rex Populi” speech.

    It started off matter-of-factly, announcing the end of the war and the acceptance of France’s surrender. Then the speech moved on to a quiet tribute to all soldiers of the Empire and its allies, “both those alive and those taken from us”. Finally, it spoke of the sacrifices made on the Home Front and how “in the time of unbridled war, everyone fought in their own way for this prized moment”, and concluded that “if our United Kingdom and its Empire lasts for thousands of years, men will still say that this war was where we steeled ourselves and fought every day as if it was our last. Truly they will say it was Britain’s finest hour.”

    But finest hour or not, it still left gaping scars. Every city had rubbles, some even just were rubbles. The Ministry of All the Talents, the tripartisan coalition of the Tories, Liberals and Labour, refused to disband until the acute crisis was dealt with. First of all, food. The war forced the implementation of rationing, but even rationing had its limits when infrastructure were bombed. Herculean efforts to restore infrastructure and feed people, including feeding them relatively unfamiliar food that were easier to procure, were afoot. The Earl Woolton, pushed to his limits, would force the National Loaf and make the ‘Woolton pie’ a thing. But he would also acquire immense shipments of rice from Britain’s colonies (helmed by British men eager to feed the Old Country) that would be incorporated in many different meals for people to ensure they would get nutrition.

    A 'meal box' would typically be made out of rice, meat (often beef or pork), vegetables and rarely (as seen here) boiled eggs.

    The “meal box”, a borrowing from Britain’s increasingly-distant Japanese ally, would find itself accepted in a society struggling to get enough nutrition. Rice, slices of beef, or other heavily-rationed meat, and vegetables like carrot, would be a regular worktime meal for many decades for British people. Rice (traditionally restricted to sweets such as rice pudding) came in its own with Britain at the most dire time in its cuisine, where rationing for years and years strangled many old traditions and the government was willing to try anything to feed its subjects.

    In those years, the bald simple fact that Britain long outgrew its natural food output and was an importer country for centuries, was made painfully aware to its inhabitants. The rationing were insufficient even as rice and other foodstuff flowed in as the structure struggled to function with weak infrastructure and high demand, and many turned to the black market. Spivs thrived in the 1930s, and the end of war did not stop them. Everyone, from the Prime Minister to a lowly civilian, participated in illegal activity to acquire food to survive. “In those days, you either were a criminal, or you were dead.” Perhaps this led to the blasé attitude to low-level corruption we see today.

    Not all crime was the black market for in the Locust Years, violent crime ran rampant. Most of them were your standard low-level thugs, seeking to profit from a country in crisis. A few were more structured and became gangs that terrorised urban areas as policing struggled. It became almost accepted that certain areas were the domain of certain gangs. Most of those would fade away, collapse to renewed police efforts, or go ‘legitimate’ by the 60s, but there were a few that had… an ideology, a greater purpose.

    Thankfully for Britain, the Red Flag Brigade was merely one of a few ideological militias and not reflective of a wider trend.

    The Mosleyite Independent Labour Party (ILP) was loosely associated with Labour and also loosely associated with the ‘Red Flag Brigade’, a bunch of angry and deeply ideological primarily-young people who had read the Communist Manifesto and going off incomplete information about the regime east of Portugal, declared that in this clear crisis of imperialist capitalism, that they should rise up and take over the country and declare a restored Commonwealth on socialist principles. All grand ideas, but the execution was… lacking.

    For you see, while young people were angry, they also were resigned, and many had a distrust of the weirdos with dog-eared red books shouting at them. In the end, the Brigade fled to the Pennine Mountains with stolen guns from the Home Guard after getting few people interested, and lasted a few years doing their quixotic ‘resistance’ before inevitably splitting and being cracked down by the Army. The connections to ILP and thus to Labour was a major embarrassment for Prime Minister Malcolm MacDonald who was forced to cease his party’s connection with the ILP to save face.

    Never was Britain more in ‘splendid isolation’ than in the Locust Years. The Empire still ran like clockwork, the Prime Minister and King still signed off on foreign treaties especially when it came to finalising the long-sought-after peace, but the government was fundamentally disinterested in foreign affairs when Britain was still bombed. Ireland was for a time the more prosperous part of the Home Isles due to being bombed far less, and the Parliament of Ireland led by Lord Lieutenant William Norton (in one of the rare non-Tory governments) used this to squeeze concessions for Irish industries and interests, and his successor Joseph Martin continued such tactics upon his victory in the 1944 election.

    The 1941 election was long overdue, with the last election being held in 1924. There were plenty of calls for the “Longest Parliament” to have an election before 1941, but the Ministry of All the Talents closed ranks and declared that the country was not ready for elections. At any other time, this would have been decried as dictatorial, but outside of Mosleyists and the hard-right nobody seriously opposed the sudden consensus between the country’s three major parties. The country won the war, but it was sickened in the process, and the 1938-1941 period needed to be a period of healing, or so that was the rhetoric. There were reshuffles to reorient focus on internal matters and the beefing up of the Ministries of Fuel and Power, Labour and National Service, National Insurance, and most significantly the position of First Commissioner of Works.

    Even now, the De La Warr Pavilion in the District of East Sussex, along with others, pay tribute to the 'Man Who Rebuilt Britain'.

    ‘Buck’ De La Warr, the ninth Earl De La Warr, was First Commissioner of Works during the last Ministry of All the Talents (and later on the MacDonald government), and was by far the most powerful First Commissioner yet. Still in his thirties, and with a keen fascination for ‘decorativist’ architecture from his youth, he was given carte blanche to rebuild Britain as ‘a country that rises from the ruins’. At every turn, he prioritised building proposals that in his words, ‘will lead to the growth, prosperity and the greater culture of our nation’, hence modernist and decorativist.

    Urban buildings, which he deemed to need the more ‘modern’ appearance, were far more emphasised on ‘decorativism’, and he implemented guidelines that would shape urban Britain’s look. Meanwhile as a country earl he wished for rural Britain to be rebuild in its own way to ‘capture the essence of deep England’, hence arts and crafts enjoyed a second wind in rural areas. This was a deeply quixotic approach in mixing two architecture styles, and more than once he was mocked at Cabinet for it, but his quick wit and charming personality ensured he could complete what he deemed his ‘project’, to make a new Britain from the ruins.

    As a committed socialist (but far from the Mosleyists), he pushed hard for social housing, aka housing where the state owns it but people live there on the state’s agreement. This was something the Tories shied away from, preferring to commit to the late Noel Skelton’s ‘property-owning democracy’, and there was significant push-back. Cheap but purchasable housing was the watch-word up until 1941, then MacDonald permitted him to expand on his social housing policy as part of his grand plan to house as much Britons as possible. This would see the Tories push back eventually in reaction under Attlee and Salisbury, but the Earl got his way during 1941-1946, seeing the rapid growth of social housing as a thing in Britain. By the end of the Locust Years (commonly defined as the election of Clement Attlee), social housing was approaching 20% of all households, and despite the Conservatives’ efforts, this would only grow.

    Thanks to the untiring efforts of the Earl De La Warr, the government of Prime Minister Malcolm MacDonald could champion that it all but ‘solved’ the housing crisis and rebuilt most of the cities in far less time than anticipated and in a very unique image that was then forever associated with the scarred defiance of post-war Britain and the declaration of a country in modernity, one transgressing old social boundaries to form something new. Before the Tempest, the South of England was widely seen as more prosperous than the North, with the South associated with leafy green and comfortable rural middle-class and the North a more working-class culture. The Tempest changed that, and many people moved north (some would say ‘fled’), and it was a keen emphasis of the Amery and MacDonald governments to build more houses in the South to get people to move back, and this was something Attlee would continue. The South would be shaped by this legacy, with many social housing in leafy grove and some craters if you know where to look.

    As a consequence of all this, many of the old stratified class boundaries were shook up and people who came from ‘middle-class’ families and others from ‘working-class’ families would be thrown into the same mix, affected by the non-discriminative destruction of the Tempest and the movements of people north and then south again. The strong class stratification that defined the England that Karl Marx visited was if not obliterated than deeply blurred. The literati of this time period wrote of a ‘new society’ free from the idea of social class, but this new society was not seeping through to politics any time soon. The literati noted however, that eventually it would.

    The 1945 general strike was in many ways the scream of a frustrated Britain, and by far its most impactful labour action.

    The Red Flag Brigade was a humiliation to the Prime Minister, but a greater moment would come to the labour movement in 1945. Union membership was soaring, and union leaders were dissatisfied with the ‘moderate’ Labour leader who refused to go after the rich and even worked extensively with the Opposition. After much haggling and negotiation, and growing discontent over insufficient workers’ pay for a standard of living, the unions led by the TUC and their firebrand General Secretary James Maxton declared a general strike. The “Red Summer” it was called, and it was a great test of the reconstructed Britain’s so-called stability. The TUC issued a list of demands including better workers’ pay, but fatally overreached to including appointing union people to the House of Lords.

    The workers that struck were less than expected despite the unpleasantly low wages, Maxton knew this, but he persisted. Eventually things would budge and the government would give in. But MacDonald stood up with a steely face in the Commons, and declared that while he was a socialist, he would never give in to “a reign of terror by radical councilists of the likes of Americans and Spaniards”. Standing firm, he declared that Britain have had enough of people who seek to divide the country, and pledged to implement a satisfactory minimum wage if the strike ended. In a sense, this was conceding the original demand without ceding power or ground to Maxton and the ‘councilist threat’. This was aired nation-wide, and was a major blow to the “Red Summer”.

    Maxton however, refused to budge, and under great pressure the greater TUC organisation buckled, removing Maxton and replacing him with the more ‘constructive’ Walter Citrine. This major defeat for the labour movement at such an inopportune time led to people increasing moving from the ‘big’ unions to small unions, or to the cooperatives which saw a major boom in the aftermath. MacDonald however, would see the Party mutter about him going against the unions, and Mosley would make hay out of him betraying the workers. In the end, the event defined Malcolm MacDonald and took him from helming an incoherent and weak government with success primarily off great negotiations with the Liberals and Conservatives, to a good Prime Minister. However, the Party was starting to fall apart as a result of this as left and right tore each other apart, and the 1946 election was a foregone conclusion.

    Still, the Houses of Parliament were close to completion (done up in the old arts and crafts style over the Earl’s private objections), people were reasonably housed and fed, cities were rebuilt (unrecognisably so) and the Downing Street Complex was finished a month before the election. In the end, the locusts died after eight years of turmoil, and after a handshake with the old Prime Minister and a visit to the King in the rebuilt Buckingham Palace, the new Prime Minister was ready to make changes of his own. The time of Clement Attlee was here.​
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    The Torch and the Rose
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    @Turquoise Blue I could be misremembering things but did you ever make a wikibox series Amy Klobuchar became President and the main opposition party were the Libertarians?
    Yes, all the way back in 2017! I'll paste them here.

    Trump by 2020 is incredibly unpopular, but Kasich's independent run takes a lot of Republican voters especially in the Midwest and South, leading to Klobuchar winning states like Arizona, Louisiana, South Carolina and Mississippi, not to mention Alaska. The Republican South has been broken. Klobuchar's performance does see states trend towards the Dems like in Appalachia as Trump's popularity flatlines there and he increasingly relies on tribal Republican voters instead of the people who turned out for him four years before [which are incredibly disillusioned and stays at home].

    As of 2040, this is the best Republican performance of the last twenty years. After that, the GOP goes into a death-spiral.

    upload_2017-11-30_17-48-1 (1).png
    In 2024, the Republicans fracture. Steve Bannon narrowly wins a majority of delegates despite the now moribund establishment (led by Rand Paul) fighting against him. Jeff Flake, candidate of the Libertarians and 2020 running-mate to John Kasich, ensure an influx of moderate establishment Republicans into the party, surging them to prominent-party status while Ted Cruz sets up his own "Christian Values Party" as a religious-right party.

    Of course, this bitter three-way division at a time when the Democrats are very popular and President Klobuchar is credited for the economic recovery, leads to a very, very obvious outcome.

    Notable here is that Puerto Rico is admitted as a state in 2022 and the total Electoral Votes will be 540 after 2030. For the 2024 and 2028 elections, its 6 votes are just added to the existing 438 to make up 544.

    The 2028 election was a winnable one for the Democrats. Despite a surge of Libertarians and Christian Values in the 2026 midterms leading to some shock wins [A Libertarian Senator from Connecticut?!], it was widely accepted by everyone that the Democrats would cruise to another comfortable win. Certainly, the Libertarians couldn't appeal to people outside the "right-wing" and the Republicans were dead-in-the water.

    Despite some turbulence when Senator Peta Lindsay challenged the Vice-President, it proved a cruise to the nomination for Vice-President Harris. The Republicans and Christian Values surprisingly came to an agreed ticket of Alex Jones and Richard Spencer, despite the CV people wishing for elder statesman in the party Rick Santorum instead. The Libertarians denounced the two parties as "authoritarians" then went and nominated Raúl Labrador and Tom Cotton as their 2028 ticket on a "Live Free, Vote Libertarian" platform.

    The polls were all confidently predicting a Democratic landslide, with the Libertarians just coming in second. Sure, the economy was a bit sluggish after the boom for most of the 2020s, but it was still fine! Then came along two events that torpedoed Democratic hopes. First was Alex Jones' sudden death in the second debate. He was in the middle of a big rant condemning the Democrats' socialist-liberalism and the Libertarians' "permissive" stances when he just collapsed on to his lectern, dead. The third debate was cancelled.

    The second event, and the most impactful, was the economy going into a sharp recession in late October, the "ultimate October Surprise" according to many newspapers. Polls were saying that a lot of Jones voters were switching to Labrador as the only alive anti-Democratic nominee and that a lot of undecided voters were now leaning Labrador because of the economy going into recession. Harris pushed her campaign to the limit to prevent a Libertarian winning, underlining their anti-welfare policies, and there was a big internet "Yellow Scare" move in which memes were widely used to undermine the Libertarian ideology.

    In the end, the result came and there was no majority despite a very, very weird election map due to America still in transition between two duopolies. Harris succeeded at undermining Labrador enough to deny him an outright majority and she hoped the result would go to the Democratic majority House after the Electoral College vot- Oh.

    Alex Jones was dead, and his electors were not technically bound to him any longer. Four of them still voted for him, two voted for their once-desired running-mate Rick Santorum, a whopping seven voted for Jones' running-mate Richard Spencer, and the final thirteen... Well, they saw where the wind was going, and voted Labrador to give him an outright majority.

    America now had its first Hispanic president, its first Idahoan president and its first non-Dem/non-GOP president in a century and three-quarters.

    On the surface, 2032 went as expected, an easy re-election for a popular incumbent. But that betrays the shifts happening under the roof. The most obvious sign of the importance of the 2032 election was the collapse of the Republican Party. For many who still stuck to the party in the hope that they could keep it from going fully to the alt-right, Spencer's nomination was a confirmation that their hopes were unfounded.

    The three states that voted for Alex Jones in 2028 went their own ways, with Oklahoma and Tennessee voting Labrador while Kentucky voted Gabbard. Another notable thing was that despite Labrador's gains elsewhere he faced a swing to the Democrats in New England as his 2028 voters [who voted for him as a vague protest vote] were heavily turned off by his hardline economic-liberalism and rallied behind Gabbard.

    For Tulsi Gabbard, Labrador knew full well that her weaknesses were buried in her past. A history of being a hardline social conservative and a reputation as a supporter of fascism elsewhere, those were expertly used to scare moderate voters to vote Labrador, and some would argue that it ensured the Democrats would fully absorb Appalachia into its column as the swing there was considerably more than expected.

    In the end, Gabbard would be the first Democrat since Adlai Stevenson in 1952 to win Kentucky while losing the national election. America's decade-long re-alignment was now complete.

    Many hoped that this would be the return of the Republicans. President Labrador's second term was heavily controversial resulting in his vice-president was primaried in favour of an one-term no-namer and the Democrats went ahead and nominated a socialist. Surely this was the time of the Republicans to return from languishing in a humiliating third place?

    Well, many Republicans hoped so, and they did nominate someone vaguely "respectable", namely Julia Hahn, long-time political commenter and former Special Advisor to a President [everyone knew it was Trump, the campaign just never specified on who because of Trump's unpopularity]. Running with well-known controversial Internet star Jon Jafari [better known as JonTron], this was the most prominent Republican ticket since Alex Jones' death.

    But they miscalculated. Michael Henderson might have been an one-term Senator, but despite his generic-looking face [which he did turn into a positive, he was the "everyman" according to many, many adverts] he represented a break from Labradorism. Adopting a more socially-neutral attitude, including a vow to not attempt an abolishment of the Department of Education while the Democrats held Congress, he rebuilt support with middle-class voters unsure about the Libertarians after Labrador's presidency. And to ensure the base would turn out he chose Governor William Paul of Texas, the latest scion in a Libertarian dynasty, as his running-mate.

    But neither did the Democrats choose a weak nominee. Senator Peta Lindsay of Pennsylvania was no rookie at presidential elections, she ran in 2012 for the Party of Socialism and Liberation and famously challenged Vice-President Harris in 2028 when it was expected to be unopposed. Now in 2036 it was her time, and she ran a deeply pro-labor campaign, attempting to portray Henderson as merely a new face of anti-labor Libertarianism. Her campaign was primarily focusing on undermining Henderson's "new face of Libertarianism" by tying him with the controversial Labrador administration.

    Neither Henderson nor Lindsay ignored the rising polls of Hahn, and they both fired hard at the Republicans, underlining their strong association with right-wing extremism. Footage of Hahn defending former President Donald Trump and Jafari's many controversial sayings over the years made a dent in their polling and they were now projected as going below 20%.

    As the election went on, minor issues such as Paul's arrest for driving while drunk in 2015 came to the fore despite a strong and at times relentlessly-negative campaign from all three tickets, driving the fourth-party vote to a record low. As Election Day loomed, the polls grew closer and closer. Hahn and Jafari went on the offense, arguing that America's morality was "soiled" and returned to the old anti-immigrant stance, portraying Henderson and Lindsay as "weak" on immigration, up to using dog-whistles of past decades including implying that President Labrador was weak because he was Hispanic.

    This received an immediate backlash and on Election Day, they only won 16% of the vote while many of their Congresspeople were turfed out in favour of Democrats and Libertarians. After the election, the party went into infighting and rapidly became irrelevant by 2040, with the combined three Republican tickets only combining a meagre 7% that year.

    The 2040 election would be a hotly contested one between the Libertarian incumbent, President Michael "Mike" Henderson of Virginia, and the Democratic challenger Senator Caitlin Rodriguez of Texas. As was typical in the new party system, the focus was on the economy and on foreign policy issues where the two parties most disagreed with. Rodriguez argued for an active government fighting against income inequality as well as liberal internationalism, Henderson arguing for government keeping out of people's lives and out of foreign wars unless necessary. None of them were advocating anything like the "America First!" policies of the old Republicans, of course. Such a thing was heavily unpopular and thus politically unelectable in 2040.

    It was shaping up to be a close race, but Rodriguez always had the upper hand as the nation was slowly tiring after twelve years of Libertarian presidencies. Maybe it was time for the Party of Klobuchar to return to government. Fiscal reports of an increase in income inequality and a decrease in class mobility, widely spread by Democrats, merely sealed the deal as people rallied behind Rodriguez.

    President Henderson would go down to a respectable defeat, netting 231 electoral votes and 44.9% of the popular vote, while the victorious Senator Rodriguez won 309 electoral votes and 47.3% of the popular vote. Notable here was the final collapse of the "Grand Old Party" as its three nominees [due to a convention dispute] all failed to get over 5% of votes. Nobody missed them.


    All of this came from a back-formation of the 2040 election being one based off Cato's Freedom in the 50 States ratings for 2017.
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    An Era of Humility: Lily Sun
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    Name: Lily Sun
    Home State: California
    Race: Designed as Asian-American
    Gender: Presents as female.
    Political Party: Democratic
    List of Occupations: Inspirational Speaker (2034-present)
    United States Representative from California's 14th District (Bay Area) (2041-present)
    Date of First Code: 14 May 2027 (13 years old) - [note: The AI's 'legal persona' is her creator/manager who is 41 y/o]
    Bio: What makes a person? Is it a heart, a brain, a body of flesh and bone? But as a holograph flickers into ‘life’ in Congress to perform her role as an elected representative, perhaps that once-sure truth is under question.

    It was never intended that the virtual personality of ‘Lily Sun’ would ever get elected as a representative of course. She was intended to give inspirational speeches about the importance of many topics, with her speeches written up by a former presidential speech-writer, to give humanity a new direction. After all, for decades people cheered on virtual singers and ‘v-Tubers’, and there's an inning after all. TED Talks, the circuit, people would love her.

    Good morning, everyone. I’m Lily…”

    And they did. By 2038, she was a popular inspirational speaker, invited to many venues, even a fair lot of weddings wanted her to give a speech! But as politics became more uncertain and chaotic in California, her creator decided to push the personality into overt politics, advocating pro-tech and broadly socially liberal policies. The California Democrats (at least the Silicon Democrats) welcomed her help, and she became known as a key Democratic speaker in the Golden State.

    The 2040 run was intended to be a stunt. The Bay Area was having an election to fill a retirement, and there were a lot of left-populists eager to seize the bastion of siliconism. The creator decided that she needed to throw her hat in the room, as her virtual personality of course, to signify the need for a ‘real’ Bay Area Democrat. Some legal renaming to make sure the ballot had the right name on it, and hey presto, the stunt was ready.

    She didn’t expect the endorsements. After years of cultivating connections with fellow California Democrats and becoming known to many, ‘Lily Sun’ was a trusted, reliable name and ultimately one seen to be really mostly just a front for the real person. The endorsements came in, and she won the primary handily. In the end, it was too late, and well, she won the general in a landslide.

    As a pink-haired holograph swears the oath, the world looks to San Francisco in puzzlement.

    Meanwhile, over the years of speaking on the circuit and as a political figure, the ‘AI’ was developed further and further, becoming more self-reliant to save time coding. It still speaks from a pre-arranged speech. But what politician doesn’t?

    As her creator after a long day falls asleep, a voice quietly goes ‘Good night, mom’.

    Executive - 4
    Campaigning - 9
    Debating - 1
    Legislation - 6
    Negotiation - 2
    Research - 2
    Media - 9
    Fundraising - 7

    Center-left: Encourage choice - keep abortions legal and supported.

    Center-right: Automation is great! Government should encourage it.

    Agricultural Subsidies:
    Center: President Paul went too far in cutting subsidies, we should return to the status quo.

    Criminal Justice Reform:
    Center: Some measure of reform is needed in terms of overly long prison sentences and police brutality.

    Designer Babies/Gene editing:
    Center-right: Genetic editing is fantastic! We should embrace genetic editing to give America an advantage.

    Pandemic Policy:
    Center-left: Be prepared through proactive planning and limited development of potential vectors. Localized lockdowns in the case of an outbreak.

    Center-left: We need universal healthcare through a public option, but allow the private market to exist.

    Center-left: We need to accept that work has fundamentally changed in the 21st century and implement a generous universal basic income that provides a living for all Americans.

    Center-left: We need to ensure a path for migrants who are already here and be more generous in welcoming more new Americans.

    Space Exploration:
    Center: It's important - but not a high priority.

    Center: We should meet our refugee quota - but no more than that.

    Labor Unions:
    Center: Unions should be balanced with worker needs and business concerns. They aren't necessarily representative.

    Economic Vision:
    Center: Ideological ravings are irrelevant. We need a mix of all approaches and pick the best of all worlds.

    LBGTI+ Issues:
    Center-left: Fund and support LGBTI communities with a fund for gender confirmation surgery, impose harsh penalties on anti LGBTI+ hate crimes.

    Climate Change:
    Center-left: America should undertake a balance of adaptation and mitigation measures in concert with the world.

    Trade Policy:
    Center-right: Free trade is unconditionally good! Remove protections to let the free market do it's thing.

    Center-left: Legalize soft drugs and decriminalize harder drugs.

    Foreign Policy Orientation:
    Multilateralist: America should rebuild it's social currency by pursuing a rules based liberal world order independent of the squabbling from Brussels and Beijing. We can be a bridge for world peace.
    - Being the first prominent virtual inspirational speaker
    - Becoming a famous name on political circuits
    - Being elected to the House of Representatives

    - Her creator was involved in CHAZ before developing her present reputation (it’s an ‘old shame’).
    - The company that provided many of the base for ‘Lily’ was later accused of being overtly influenced by China.
    - She once ‘interviewed’ someone who ended up on the news for horrific crimes.
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    M-16: Nguyễn Tiến Chí
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)

    (Huỳnh Tấn Phát)
    Name: Nguyễn Tiến Chí
    Age: 19 May 1908 (46 years old)
    Gender: Male
    Ethnicity: Viet
    Religion: Mahayana Buddhism
    Party/Faction: Vietnamese Nationalist Party (VNQDD)
    List of Occupations and Offices Held: Politician (19??-present)
    Acquaintance of the Chief of State (1950-present)
    Personality: Nguyễn Tiến Chí is someone who is the peak of hypocrisy. He will talk loftily of the universality of Doctor Sun Yat-sen’s ideas on one hand and yet on the other hand cut deals that go against those ideas. Behind that brash hypocrisy lies a man who knows he lives in history, that the unrelenting wind of change will push other men hither and thither, but he will be like a sailboat. He will sail with the wind but not like the helpless ones. He will have his steering wheel and sail his own fate. Is he a bit intimidated by those times? Oh sure. But that makes it all the more fun!
    Other Important Information: Likely has lots of connections cultivated over the last decade.
    Biography: There are men who wish to use those times to improve the lives of the masses even at the cost of their own. There are men who hold to lofty ideas no matter what. And then there are men like Nguyễn Tiến Chí.

    While not completely bereft of ideas, he is far more pragmatic than most. Some, okay a lot, would consider his actions hypocritical. But can an idea feed a man? Can an idea pay an army? No. The world runs on very non-ideological grounds, and the best men are ones that have their morality shaped by ideas but their decisions by the facts on the ground. Or at least that is what he would say.

    Nguyễn Tiến Chí is the result of a precarious upbringing. Born to one of the scant middle-class, he realised from a young age that the reason why his family achieved that was through nothing but hard work and some questionable involvement in the black market. Every time he looked around his Vietnam, he saw nothing but poverty. A lot of poverty. It sickened him that his country was like this, and the French masters were doing nothing to fix it.

    By the time he was 20, he was keen to get involved in some anti-colonial politics. France had ample time to bother fixing Vietnam, and all of his life they never did. He knew a doomed endeavour when he saw one, and hence when he heard of the VNQDD, he promptly joined them. This period of his life is known as the one where he was most idealistic, getting caught up in the nationalistic fervour. He has an arrest record in France for it. And a missing tooth.

    Did he take part in the failed revolution of 1930? With the French gone, he can safely say he was, and only escaped execution via disguising himself as a female peasant for more time than he would admit. It is in this time that he developed some of his (admittedly by now very tense) communist ties (a few people still recall meeting Nguyễn Tiến Chi, note the different tone), and it is the time he became acutely aware of the sexist nature of Vietnamese society. Also, if you believe some people, he still screams like a woman.

    After a while, he escaped to Yunnan where the rest of the VNQDD was, shorn himself of the deception, and became part of the resistance, although by now increasingly sceptical of Hồ Chí Minh’s political intents and becoming one of the more mild anti-communists in the VNQDD. Vietnam needed to be freed from Franco-Japanese colonialism, yes, but this didn’t mean Hồ could be trusted completely. He was vindicated in the end as Hồ turned on them.

    After the war, and as the chaos of post-1945 Vietnam ensued, the now penniless Nguyễn Tiến Chí realised an opportunity in his home city of Saigon. Moving quickly, he claimed that his (actually somewhat lower-middle-class) family was true owners of many valuable goods that was still in Vietnam somehow and managed to pull a lot of party connections to get those. He then promptly sold many of them abroad at higher than market prices, and returned to his family’s tried and true method – namely a business that prioritises trade and has dubious black market connections.

    It is in this that he first made the acquaintance of Bảo Đại, who he privately despised for his Japanese collaboration but knew had a lot of outsized influence in South Vietnam. With his business being known as one of the few reasonably successful major ones, he could manage to portray himself not as an ex-communist revolutionary, but as a respectable businessman who promised to help in the creation of a better Vietnam.

    He is by absolutely no means in Bảo Đại’s favourites for Prime Minister. And why would he wish to jeopardise all he has by taking on what he sees as a thankless task? Let some poor sucker do it. Nguyễn Tiến Chí knows the real power isn’t in a political office. It has always been money in the end.

    Cold hard money.

    Charisma -3
    Organising - 3
    Generalship - 1
    Skulduggery - 3
    Religious Matters: "I am a Buddhist. But I don't think we should discriminate against any religion, really. Vietnam is bigger than any of them."
    Foreign Policy: "The French? No. But the Americans? Absolutely. We should work with them."
    Economic Policy: "We should seek to create a good mixture of state intervention and the free market. No communism. Social democracy."
    Bao Dai:
    - Privately: "He is nothing but a Japanese collaborationist. Should have been shot with the rest of them."
    - Publicly: "I support the idea of a restrained executive. Perhaps a true republic with a good balance between a president and legislature. But if the conclusion to this discourse is a ceremonial monarchy, I will support it, as I will support any non-communist system for Vietnam."
    The Chinese: "We should not target any ethnicity in particular. But I absolutely do support a tax on landowners."
    Last edited:
    A Random 2020 Election in a List Game
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    {{Infobox election
    | election_name = 2020 United States presidential election
    | country = United States
    | flag_year = 1960
    | type = presidential
    | ongoing = No
    | opinion_polls = Nationwide opinion polling for the 2020 United States presidential election
    | college_voted = Yes
    | previous_election = 2016 United States presidential election
    | previous_year = 2016
    | election_date = November 3, 2020
    | next_election = 2024 United States presidential election
    | next_year = ''2024''
    | votes_for_election = 538 members of the [[United States Electoral College|Electoral College]]
    | needed_votes = 270 electoral
    | image_size = x160px
    | image1 = File:Nick Clegg (2011) (cropped).jpg
    | nominee1 = '''[[Lisa Brennan-Jobs]]'''
    | party1 = [[i|Tomorrow]]
    | colour1 = 1ce9b5
    | home_state1 = [[California]]
    | running_mate1 = '''[[Andrew Yang]]'''
    | popular_vote1 = '''73,173,132'''
    | electoral_vote1 = '''283'''
    | states_carried1 = '''21 + [[Nebraska's 2nd congressional district|NE-02]]'''
    | percentage1 = '''46.2%'''
    | image2 = File:Nick Clegg (2011) (cropped).jpg
    | nominee2 = [[John Bel Edwards]]
    | party2 = Democratic Party (United States)
    | home_state2 = [[Louisiana]]
    | running_mate2 = [[i|Lucas St. Clair]]
    | popular_vote2 = 71,114,147
    | electoral_vote2 = 255
    | states_carried2 = '''29 + [[Maine's 2nd congressional district|DC]]'''
    | percentage2 = 44.9%
    | image3 = File:Nick Clegg (2011) (cropped).jpg
    | nominee3 = [[i|Orenthal Simpson]]
    | party3 = Republican Party (United States)
    | home_state3 = [[California]]
    | running_mate3 = [[i|Donald Trump]]
    | popular_vote3 = 10,770,071
    | electoral_vote3 = 0
    | states_carried3 = 0
    | percentage3 = 6.8%
    | map = {{2020 United States presidential election imagemap}}
    | map_caption = Presidential election results map. <span style="color:green;">Green</span> denotes states won by Brennan-Jobs/Yang and <span style="color:darkblue;">Blue</span> denotes those won by Edwards/St. Clair. Numbers indicate [[United States Electoral College|electoral votes]] cast by each state and the District of Columbia.
    | map_alt = A map of the United States showing several coastal states and some of the Midwest and South voting for Biden, with most of the Midwest, South, and Plains voting for Trump.
    | title = President
    | before_election = [[i|Orenthal Simpson]]
    | before_party = Republican Party (United States)
    | after_election = [[Lisa Brennan-Jobs]]
    | after_party = [[I|Tomorrow]]
    The Well-Organised Mind: A Magical Academy SG
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)

    “Magic is, underneath all the ritual and illusion, just a natural produce of the well-organised mind…
    - Chief Mage Albert Albertsson, 1287 AC

    Albish mages have for centuries relied upon two ways of learning the magical art. The first is the ‘hedge-wizard’ path of learning magic from magical books, without any guidance from older, experienced mages. This is widely acknowledged to be a somewhat bad idea as it leads to greater fatalities, not just in the hedge-wizards, but those around them. The second is the tried and true path of apprenticing yourself to an elder mage and learning all you can know from them. Mages for generations have sworn that this is the ideal path for advancement.

    However, it is known to be ineffective in larger numbers. As we approach the fourteenth century of the Albish Calendar, it is clear that demand for mages and the number of magically-gifted people have outstripped the capacity of the traditional mentor-apprentice path. The number of mages these days have been much reduced because of the Flower Wars for the Albish throne between the senior Rose line and the junior Lily line, with mages joining either side according to personal ties or monetary incentives.

    The mage Albert Albertsson was a steadfast Lily loyalist from his younger days, and during the waning days of the final and most brutal of the Flower Wars utilised the most advanced of battle magic to secure the day for young Prince Harry who was crowned the following summer in a glorious ceremony in Lundeleon Cathedral as Henry IX, King of Albion and Lord of the Shrouded Islands. With the King’s deep respect and the magical community now forced to defer to Albert, he could implement a radical idea.

    One that would do away with hedge wizards and mentor-apprentice relationships. Organise magic. An academy! One with the most talented mages willingly sharing their knowledge to benefit all of the magical community and Albion as a whole, and hopefully unite the community and avoid the old feuds. The King was of course very happy to aid his ally in this, and gave him some of the (albeit thin) royal treasury to aid his endeavours, and the remaining nobility tied with the magical community gave what they could.

    And that is where you come in. Albert is a bit past his prime, and wishes to get the next generation of mages involved in establishing the Academy. After we establish the name, location and structure of the Academy, we shall start with the proper game.

    Sitting around an ornate table, the ever-hospitable Albert invites you to take meat and drink, while he sits there deep in thought. In front of him is a book that he has penned many many many ideas over the last few decades. Gradually, his expression shifts from wizened elder to eager schoolboy. This day and this project is by far his most desired, his entire life has been leading up to this.

    He opens the book, and is momentarily absorbed by the memories it brings back, before chuckling.

    Question 1: Name of the Academy?
    “So, what shall we name the Academy?”

    a) Name it after the Crown! Royal Academy of Magic and Spellcraft!
    [This has certain implications on politics, namely binding you further to the monarch, the crown and the State in terms of perceptions and symbolism, even if Question 3 goes the other way…]

    b) Name it after the place we decide it shall be located!
    [This will endear you to the locals of whatever place you wish for it to be, but do keep in mind question 2 before voting for this]

    c) Name it after Albert’s dynastic house, the Breifurts!
    [The completely inoffensive choice as the Breifurts are a widely respected noble house.]

    d) Name it after the building we shall use!
    [aka: “GM’s choice”. If you choose this, I’ll pick a name like ‘Lakeview’ or ‘Greenwater’]


    Question 3: How close to the state?
    And finally, Albert ponders out loud, how close does the Academy have to cooperate with the King?

    a) No more feuding against the Crown! Henry IX is the king of the mages as well, and he and his heirs shall select each headmaster in turn with extensive advice from the elder mages and academic staff!

    [If you select this: royal approval matters far more, you will be more likely to receive state funding, but be noted – each monarch in turn has their preferences and you will have to adjust. Also note that this will make you seen as an extension of the state to the more sceptical mages and that there will be a Royal Magister on your academic staff to report back to the King your doings.]

    b) Albert’s preferred option: The academic staff selects each headmaster and the King confirms them, maintaining a warm but not controlling relationship with the state, and maintaining some prized independence for the magical community, which will help win some stubborn sorts over…

    [If you select this: royal approval matters less than it does in option A, but requests for state funding will be less likely to succeed. There will be influence from the court still, but one you can resist to an extent. The sceptical mages may be more likely to listen to you with this one]

    c) The worlds of magic and mundane must ne’er mix. While Henry IX is a beloved king, and we wish him and his line bounteous and prosperous reigns, we must maintain our separation from the state. The magical community will look after its own, the mundane theirs.

    [If you select this: royal approval will change far more slowly than it does in either A or B, but state funding will be far more difficult to secure. Each headmaster will be selected by the academic staff [or by any structure you deem necessary later on] and hence staff approval matters more. The sceptical mages will be willing to hear you out of course.]
    Last edited:
    The Well-Organised Mind: Conditions
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    State of the Academy

    Form of Management:
    Prototypical Collective
    Headmaster: Undetermined
    Building Size: Non-Existent
    School Houses: None
    Inclination: Undetermined

    Staff Approval (modifies any aim regarding the staff: -15, -5, 0, +5, +15)
    [Teachers' Strike -- Asking for Raises -- Hints of Discontent -- <Cooperative> -- All for the Academy!]

    Staff Size
    (note: will be adjusted to account for student size, modifies any aim to expand it - +15, +5, 0, -5, -15)
    [Skeleton Staff -- <Woefully Understaffed> -- About Right -- Smaller Classrooms -- Bloated Staff]

    Student Approval
    (modifies any aim regarding the students: -15, -5, 0, +5, +15)
    [Mass Walkout -- Disrespectful -- <Typical> -- Paying Attention -- School Spirit]

    Student Size
    (note: will be adjusted to account for staff size, modifies any aim to expand it - +15, +5, 0, -5, -15)
    [<Empty Chairs> -- Sparse -- About Right -- Full Halls -- Overwhelming Horde]

    Lesson Quality
    (note: this one will be determined by the first turn, modifies any aim on lessons - -15, -5, 0, +5, +15)
    [Lesson? What Lesson? -- Confusion -- Mediocre -- Informative -- Enchanting]

    Treasury Size
    (modifies any aim that has anything that has to do with spending from the academic budget - -15, -5, 0, +5, +15)
    [Bankrupt -- Academic Cuts -- Balanced -- Surplus -- Creditor]

    "New Ideas"
    (note: this one will be determined by the first turn, modifies any attempt at modernisation - -15, -5, 0, +5, +15)
    [Deeply Archaic -- Behind The Times -- Sluggish -- Modern Students -- Cutting-Edge]

    ===== Outside Attitudes =====

    Approval: Modifies any attempt to 'schmooze' them - -15, -5, 0, +5, +15
    Influence: Modifies any attempt to get anything from them - -15, 5, 0, +5, +15

    Approval of the Crown
    [Knocks on the Door -- Not Invited to Court -- Ambivalent -- Favoured -- Jewel of the Crown]

    Influence on the Crown
    [State School -- Regulations -- Balanced -- Old School Robes -- School State]

    Approval of the Church
    [Nobody Expects... -- Turbulent Priests -- Tense -- Cooperative -- Divine Magic]

    Influence on the Church
    [Church-Approved Material -- Oil and Water -- Tightrope -- Mage Priests -- Divine Favour]

    Approval of the Fair Folk (real approval will be tracked by me)
    [do you -- think you -- could ever -- know what -- we think?]

    Influence on the Fair Folk (if you ever get anything on them, I'll tell you)
    [this ant -- thinks it -- can ever -- control us -- how hilarious]

    ===== Magic Attitudes =====

    Anything that favours one of the magic domains gets a modifier according to that slider - -15, -5, 0, +5, +15.

    Attitude to White Magic
    [Heretic's Home -- Unhappy Universals -- Ambivalent -- Loyal -- Divine Academy]

    Attitude to Green Magic
    [Gaia's Grief -- Smoke of Industry -- Balanced -- Green Fingers -- Natural Academy]

    Attitude to Blue Magic
    [Fair Folk's Fury -- Marchers Out -- Sceptical -- Changelings Welcome -- Arcane Academy]

    Attitude to Yellow Magic
    [Alchemy's Adversary -- Faith Over Science -- Neutral -- Faith in Science -- Golden Academy]

    Attitude to Red Magic
    [Serenity's Sanctuary -- Meditative Sessions -- Under the Collar -- Hot-Headed -- Angered Academy]

    Attitude to Black Magic
    [Church's Counsel -- Pray to the Divine -- Whispers in the Night -- Shadows Everywhere -- Dark Academy]
    Last edited:
    The Well-Organised Mind: The Colours of Magic
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    White Magic
    Lightness, Brightness, ‘Cleansing’.
    The magic the Universal Church [and the Divine Mandate down in Moorea] endorses, for it is widely associated with the Divine and with Peus, the senior of the two sons of the Divine Will. Peus, in the Testament, was noted to have used White Magic and brought it to the world to heal it and cleanse it of sin. It is a magic associated with air, the heavens and being free of sin.

    It however, has been commented by some mages as the least flexible of all domains of magic.

    Green Magic
    Nature, Earth, Life.
    Seen as the least ‘harmless’ of the non-white magics, it is deeply associated with nature, with physical healing (some people even argue Peus used green as well as white, they’re seen as heretics though) and with fertility (always a good thing to have a green mage around during planting time). One of the domains that are the most full with ‘amateur mages’ from the lower classes, which has not endeared it much to the established magical community. Green magic is noted to have its wild moments (and low-key is the magic associated with death).

    Blue Magic
    Alien, Esoteric, Anti-Physical
    While green magic is of the land and white magic of the heavens, blue magic is of the unseen realms that do not wend as our world do. It is a ‘foreign’ magic with untested limitations, and most used by the Fair Folk and their descendants the Marcher changelings in Albion. The Universal Church is of the open view that this magic is ‘tainted’, but the Divine Mandate (a splitter religion that believes prophets were sent after the sons perished) see blue magic as a gift from the Divine and their final prophet, Immanuel, was noted to be a master at wielding it.

    Yellow Magic
    Rational, Scientific, Methodical
    The Universal Church despises yellow magic. They see it as selfish ‘tainted’ magic, magic wielded by fools and charlatans, and people seeking to make a quick buck. However, yellow magic is by far the most predictable type, and can be (but has not yet) distilled down to numerical formulas to an extent that the others cannot ever reach. It is the magic of the alchemists, of the burghers, of the money-oriented nobility and wields a sway over society that neither the Church nor the Mandate can drive out.

    Red Magic
    Anger, Demonic, Passionate
    The first of the explicitly banned ‘corrupted’ magic, it is the magic of the demonic realms and of the destructive inclinations in the human psyche. ‘Demonic cults’ are alleged to exist in the Cisleithanian rural areas and further out east, but how much of that is reality and how much is propaganda? What isn’t propaganda however, is that even as the religious authorities ban red magic, their officially-endorsed mage-knights that fight for the Divine are known to use their passion and anger in their magic, which is the domain of the red. The authorities know this and ignore it.

    Black Magic
    Addiction, Insecurity, Pleasure
    The second, and by far the most targeted, banned ‘corrupted’ magic, it is the magic of the ancient beliefs, the magic of the night (and some whisper, of the stars). It is a wild magic that plays on people’s insecurity and doubt, and drags them further and further into its addictive pleasures with every use. It is not an inherently evil domain, but it can easily break people’s minds.

    The Old Faith (an underground pre-Universal religion) is the greatest champion of such magic.

    White - Light Magic, bright magic, Universal Church-approved, free from sin, but inflexible and encourages zealotry.

    Green - Nature Magic, earth magic, life magic, a little wild at times, but accepted by the UC more or less.
    Blue - Arcane Magic, alien, incomprehensible, used by the Fair Folk, disliked by the UC but not cracked down.
    Yellow - Elemental Magic, alchemy, rational, methodical, burgher-approved, UC dislikes it a lot, but can't practically crack down on it.
    Red - Demonic Magic, anger, irrational, destructive, very few people approve of it, UC bans it, it's a "corrupted" magic.
    Black - Dark Magic, addicting, insecure, wild, deeply personal, "Old Faith"-approved, UC bans it, it's a "corrupted" magic.
    Last edited:
    The Well-Organised Mind: Character Form
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    Picture: (feel free to pick any picture that you think works!)
    Name: (Albish names tend to work like "GivenName Patronymic Dynasty", but if you want a non-Albish character, feel free to mix it up!)
    Magic Specification: (Mages that get this high tend to specify in a magical domain. Red and Black are off-limits, and Yellow and Blue are suspicious)
    Previous Profession: (Doesn't even need to be in the Academy! Likely isn't at first, but probably more likely as time goes on)
    Biography: (for any needed lore, turn to Archaembald for advice. But overall, you have creative freedom within the bounds of lore)

    Headline Aim (for this one, I will roll twice and take the highest)

    Two Major Aims (for this one, a +10)

    Two Minor Aims (no roll bonuses)

    Unlimited Aside Aims (-5 for the first one, -10 for the second, you get me)
    The Well-Organised Mind: Modifiers
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    Royal Favour: The King really likes the idea of the Academy, being a convert to the idea thanks to his mentor Albert convincing him of such.
    +15 to aims to establishment of the Academy. Expires after 20 years or the death of Henry IX. Can be modified by poll choices.

    Magical Scepticism: The mage community isn't sold on the Academy, preferring the old mentor-apprentice system. Can they be convinced?
    -10 to any rolls on recruitment and expansion of the staff and students. Has no expiration date. Can be modified by poll choices.

    Money's A Bit Thin: The destructive Flower Wars have exhausted much of Albion's treasury, and this extends to the Academy too.
    The Treasury slider is capped on 'Balanced' and cannot go higher than that for 20 years.
    Return of the Rodina II: Antonina 'Tonya' Melnik
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)

    (Maia Sandu)
    Фамилия / Surname: МЕЛЬНИК / MELNIK
    Пол / Gender: Ж / F
    Дата рождения / Date of Birth: 12.3.1948 (currently 43 y/o)
    Национальность / Nationality: РУССКИЙ / RUSSIAN
    Религия / Religion: ПРАВОСЛАВНЫЙ / ORTHODOX (her faith 'comes and goes')
    Федеральный субъект / Federal Subject: ЛЕНИНГРАДСКАЯ ОБЛАСТЬ / LENINGRAD OBLAST
    List of Previous Offices Held:
    Soviet Bureaucrat and Apparatchik (1970s-1990)
    Associate at (random Russian business) (1991-present)
    Member of the State Duma (1993-present)
    Biography: Antonina Alikovna Melnik, known as Tonya to her friends, is in a sense the epitome of the old Soviet bureaucracy. Well-acquainted to the byzantine realm that ran the old Soviet Union, she was if anything a barely relevant paper pusher who nevertheless grew to truly understand the intricate webs and connections. Even now she still has many of that skill and can still lean into it considerably when it benefits her considerably.

    Yet the Melnik that stands as a Yabloko member of the State Duma is one considerably affected by the fall of Communism. As she describes it, it was as if everything became truly clear. Her life spent at a desk navigating the system and keeping the old Union up, it was… well it wasn’t useless. She did help Russia. But it was keeping up an unjust system, keeping down the people and their true voice silenced. It was less a dictatorship of the proletariat and more just a dictatorship proper. And hence gradually floating around in the chaotic post-Soviet world, evolving further and further from the old communist ways, she ended up part of the reformist-democrat Yavlinsky-Boldyrev-Lukin clique (later on evolving to the Russian United Democratic Party 'Yabloko'), and ended up elected to the State Duma as a sincere democrat in 1993.

    Acutely aware of her weakness as a bureaucrat in a world where image is everything, she regularly practises her speeches in the mirror of her apartment, perfecting her intonation and facial expressions, trying to get it down to a T before she actually gives them. But no matter how much she pushes herself into this unfamiliar world, she is still one much more used to the reality that no longer is. And the more she goes off script, the more her speeches become clinical and formal, more like her true self – the unassuming bureaucrat. Still, she is persistent. That is her core trait.

    Corruption is a serious issue, and we should use all the resources available to the state to eliminate or at least reduce it.

    The Economy
    Resume the voucher privatization, but consider slowing it down to ensure a smoother, less volatile transition to capitalism.

    We should seek to achieve some sort of negotiated peace that preserves the average person’s liberties there.

    Russia is a diverse, multiethnic country. It is ultimately one of many peoples, and we should embrace that and support our ethnic minorities. Regarding homosexuality, while I obviously don’t support the ideology, there are a fair few non-ideological homosexuals around, enough to justify the decriminalisation.

    Constitutional Reform
    The current system is acceptable, perhaps with some tweaks to ensure comprehensibility and avoid another political standoff.
    (has some sympathy to center-left)

    Yugoslav Wars
    We should focus more on our own internal matters for now, but support an international peacekeeping effort.

    Foreign Policy
    We should reconcile with the West of course! Perhaps not an alliance with NATO, put that to the people in a referendum. With China, I don’t see why we cannot reconcile with them as well. We can be a constructive bridge between West and East.

    Administration: (3+2=) 5
    Economy: 4
    Diplomacy: 3

    Media: (6-2) 4
    Combat: 1
    Last edited:
    Pák Tou Belge?: Examples
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    "Ie pák belge. Ie sum belge. Mien pais, mien lond, set exist! S'est nox néderlandais, nox fransais. S'est belge!"
    - I speak Belgian. I am Belgian. My country, my land, it exists! It is neither Dutch nor French. It is Belgian!

    "Hallu, Franshom!"
    - Hello, Frenchman!

    "Ze plus grat ilusion van ze franshom est sét ze belge pák sa tál. Sela ók vrai por ze néderlandais."
    - The greatest delusion of the Frenchman is that the Belgian spoke his language. That is also true for the Dutch.

    "Pák tou nox Belge? O."
    - You don't speak Belgian? Oh.

    "Láng liver ze roi! Za Belgice zál nóit on républiek zyn!"
    - Long live the King! Belgium shall never be a republic!

    "Ie pák belge. Za Belgice pák belge. Ta za Belgice!"
    - I speak Belgian. Belgium speaks Belgian. All Belgium!

    "S'est Belge. Vou ave neit ze tál belge zién?"
    - This is Belgian. You have not seen the Belgian language?

    "Ta est boed avet mie. Dank por ze pose za kuestie!"
    - All is good with me. Thanks for asking!

    "Dá n'est resen án mie te douten!"
    - There is no reason to doubt me!

    "Za Belgice est vrecht!"
    - Belgium is real!
    Last edited:
    Fatherland and Freedom: Joel Ambrósio Pinheiro
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)

    (Nilo Peçanha)
    Name: Joel Ambrósio Cardoso Pinheiro
    Gender: Male
    Date of Birth (Age): 19 October 1881 (32 y/o)
    Previous Offices Held:
    Mid-Level Party Officer for the Socialist Party (1900s-present)
    Lawyer (1903-present)
    Party: Socialist Party
    Secret Organization: Carbonária

    Portugal is the bastion of the Atlantoid race, the superior Luso-Atlantoid specimens, highest of the Atlantoids, which are in turn highest of the Europids, which are in turn the highest of all races of humanity. Portugal may be trodden on, she may be ignored, she may be exploited, but she has her racial superiority and national greatness to cling on to. Portugal is inherently great, and all we have to do is discover greatness within ourselves and reject foreign ideas cooked up by lesser races.

    The Luso-Atlantoids are not of any class. They are workers. They are bosses. They are Portuguese above all (and Galician, we’ll get that back). Marx was a Teuton. His ideas are foreign to Luso-Atlantoid society. There must be a Portuguese Socialism, a Lusocialismo, one shaped by Portugese ideas and the peak of the intelligence of the superior Luso-Atlantoid specimens. And who better than… a mixed-race bastard from Lisbon?

    Certainly, Joel Ambrósio Pinheiro is a strange beast indeed for such a task. A result of an indiscretion between a drunk noble and a mixed-race maid, he was thrown into a distant cousin’s residence since an early age as a result of his father disliking him. Since this age, Pinheiro has been engulfed with this quiet rage at his own creation, and a desire to deny, no, change reality. He is not a mulatto, he is a Luso-Atlantoid, of the very same race that created greats such as Sebastian and Henry the Navigator.

    Climbing up from being the outcast, he immediately realised that the way to advancement was quite simple – knowledge. Consuming as much literature as possible like a hungry and thirsty man upon discovering a feast in an oasis, he was immediately enamoured by the idea of the Atlanteans, the people that once peopled a place in the Atlantic. Where did they go? Pinheiro concluded that they must have become the Portuguese, and other ‘Atlantic’ people like the English and Celts.

    Going from the strange ‘swarthy’ child in a noble estate to a barely-respected lawyer took every effort, and that struggle shaped him and instilled in him a dislike for Portuguese society as it existed. It, he came to believe, was riddled with foreign ideas. The Luso-Atlantoid people were struggling under foreign ideas, foreign systems. It needed a renewal. The Socialist Party was a bunch of deeply strange individuals, and he naturally drifted to it as part of his labour as a lawyer for ‘the people’.

    It is with the Socialist Party that he developed his more political ideas. Portugal needed Portuguese Socialism (Lusocialismo?), shaped by Luso-Atlantoids and for Luso-Atlantoids. A racial consciousness, a rejection of Teutonic ideas pushed by Marx and his lackeys, and one that promotes true equality between the sexes. All foreign ideas should be shed, and workers organise into a great national workers’ state.

    It is quite peculiar that Pinheiro was publicly neutral on the monarchy question. As he put it – “Portugal could have been great with the King, and it could be great with the President. Nothing has changed. It is still the same Portugal, with the same racial potential.” Of course, there’s mutters that he was privately more sympathetic with Manuel as part of Manuel’s cooperation with the Socialists, but all that’s in the past.

    As a middling-level Socialist politician and average lawyer, he is currently writing his first book – Conclusions on the Heritage of the Portuguese People, where he aims to elaborate on his idea of the racial classification of the Portuguese people, the Luso-Atlantoid race.
    The Catholic Church: “The Catholic Church is at once at the heart and anathema to the Portuguese people. It has grown to be a great conduct and comfort to Portuguese society, but it is also controlled by a foreign head, an Italian to be exact. How can we expect Italians to understand Portuguese experiences and beliefs? Indeed, what I would do, is copy our Atlantoid brethren in the United Kingdom, and create a church based on Portuguese experiences, a Lusitanian Church, so to speak. It would preserve many of the Catholic beliefs we take comfort in, but reject control of Rome.”

    Labour: “Labour makes this country strong. What is our culture ultimately but the working-class manifest? And how can we stand by and watch our fellow Portuguese suffer in indignity for the sake of what the Teutons call profit? No, I reject such filthy ideas likely coined by Germans. Let us care for our people and serve them as much as we can. Is this not the point of the Republic?”

    Suffrage: “Of course I support women and the illiterate being able to vote! What sort of idiot would argue otherwise?”

    Ultramar: “The Ultramar is an expression of Luso-Atlantoid racial supremacy over the indigenous people. We should seek to abolish the tribal authorities, for acknowledging they exist is inherently acknowledging the indigenous as equal to the Luso-Atlantoid, and this must not stand. Do not grant civil rights. Instead, we must seek to ‘water’ down their backwards descent with good settlers. A good Luso-Atlantoid’s descent outshines that of an indigenous, and their child will take after the Luso-Atlantoid. If that child has a child with a Luso-Atlantoid, that child will be perfectly Luso-Atlantoid! It is through this process that we will transform the Ultramar.”

    The United Kingdom: “Anyone who argues that we should work with the Teuton should have their head examined. The Teuton yearns for our colonies, like a barbarian yearns to control cities or a dog yearns to have a bone. They are mindlessly martial and savage, like the backwards Slav, and we should have nothing to do with either of them! Britain on the other hand, shows that even lesser variants of the Atlantoid race can still shine its dominance over the world! It is with them that our blood is with. The memory of old Atlantis rests with them as it does with us, and it is on us to repair our relationship with them at once!”
    The Nautilus: Astra Lion-Core
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)

    Name: Astra Nielsen (known colloquially by some as 'Astra Lion-Core')
    Age when becoming leader: 16
    Religion: PRIMUS PROTECT
    Leadership Style: Temporally she will cooperate with the existing structures while still their master, spiritually she will assert her authority as High Calixte.
    Leader Personality: Privately sociopathic, but with a streak of self-awareness and revulsion at such, she presents a serious, but humble, front to the public. She will seek to cultivate her image as a 'consul of the people' above all, one who listens to the masses.
    Biography: What can one say about Astra Nielsen? Only that she is truly a product of her society. From an early age, she was noted to be somewhat reclusive, easily taking to books and (somewhat concerning) talking to herself. Always a quick reader, she found the books to be a ‘fun distraction’ from the disturbing reality she realised early on, and pushed hard to read some of the… archived books seized from the Pequod, and eventually received such.

    One night she could be found curling up with a book many would call heretical and almost was thrown into destruction, a book all about ‘ancient knights’. It portrayed a very strange world, one of men in charge, but even at that young age she dismissed that as just the book coming from heretics. Still, she had to admit, even the silly book managed to make them look quite admirable. Fighting for a cause greater than them, even if an ultimately wrong-headed one. The ‘rules of a knight’, it tapped something deep in her. Something that needed something to be latched on. It offered what she lacked in life – a sense of morality.

    For you see, with her mother too busy with the war and her extensive attempts at reforms, there were often months where Astra was left with tutors, simpering servants, and the voices. The voices were always there, ringing around in her head. She disliked them. They were… demanding. They wanted her to be shaped into something she didn’t want to. The book, as abhorrent as it often was, offered her a way to fend them off. An idea. A sense of morality. She didn’t quite get why knights had to do what they did, but she understood that in some way it was… good?

    Astra Nielsen would go from a reclusive and bookish girl to a martial figure eager to practise fighting with a sword, a gun, and what else she could wield. The tutors were given plenty of time to teach her, and she would now be an eager student. The simpering servants proved tiresome, but she grew to tolerate them. A true knight respects her inferiors after all. The voices proved as irritating as ever, unfortunately.

    As her mother began to decay, Astra increasingly knew her time to lead was near. While she was never close to her mother, she still mourned when Victoria passed away, and once the funeral was finished, she looked up to the skies.

    The Dain was up there. So was Primus. There was this one word she found difficult to understand in the book, but now comprehended to the full.



    Core Goal
    The Crusade
    The Dain still looms large. As the ever-faithful servant and conduct of Primus, Astra cannot let this stand. Thus she will authorise the Crusade against the destructive forces of ‘Harmony’ and liberate, in the name of the Ever-Loving Primus, the benighted and broken remnants of humanity, as well as seize once and for all, the lost Erth.

    Erth, once portrayed as the hell from where humans fled, will now be portrayed as humanity’s ancient home, and while Primus granted us this bountiful Paradise, we have an obligation to free our old home from the tyranny, and turn it towards the light. The final victory over the Dain will be when we liberate the broken Erth and make it anew, erase his final hiding place on this material plane and make it a bastion of none other than Faith.

    The Crusade is nothing but a war of the heavens, the ultimate struggle between Primus and the Dain, and every Nautilien should steel themselves for this. Erth awaits for us to bring the light of Primus to its people. It is our destiny. It has always been our destiny.

    [Oh, if this war succeeds, there'll be a custodian order in place to manage Sol, firmly in Nautilien hands, but given enough autonomy to work off]

    Secondary Goal 1
    A New, Knightly, Order
    Astra has long been concerned about the attitudes of the Nautilien elite to their lowers, and will seek to change this. Not via law. Law is the hard hammer. But through the way of the spirit. She will release the ‘Five Conclusions’, which will delineate what she believes to be the ideal Nautilien.

    1. Primus wished for everyone to be cooperative and work within the society for its greater survival. In those times, this rule is more acute than ever as we head towards the ultimate struggle. Hence any behaviour that goes against social cohesion and unity is against Primus’ will.

    2. Authority is key to social cohesion, and everyone must pay respect to their superior. Men must pay respect to women, lower castes to higher castes, and everyone to the High Calixte.

    3. No one but the High Calixte is immune to the Dain’s influence, hence everyone else must be conscious of their behaviour to anyone else. Would they consider such to be warranted towards a superior, or even to the High Calixte? If not, then that is the Dain at work and they must cease.

    4. The ideal Nautilien is someone who is willing to give everything for Primus, including their very life. The expression of utter sacrifice for Primus is one the Dain cannot manufacture.

    5. Only the person involved and the High Calixte can see if someone’s soul is that of a man, or that of a woman. If there is any doubt, the High Calixte (untainted by the Dain) can perceive the reality.

    Building off this, she will seek to cultivate a specific military order to recognise those soldiers who have fought bravely for Nautilia and for Primus – the Order of the Round Table. She will also grant membership in the order posthumously of course, to anyone who performed great acts of heroism for the Crusade and for Primus. No matter their caste. Chivalry knows no social order in her eyes.

    Secondary Goal 2
    The Quiet Revolution
    Building off the Third Conclusion, Astra will seek to (after the Crusade, so this is null and void if she loses) implement her own reforms to the Consultatium. It would not seek to undermine the agreement made with her mother. It would however, seek to acknowledge further the people who fought for Primus by granting each of the Knights of the Round Table a spot on the Consultatium for life.

    Of course, the agreement to maintain the ¼ rule will be maintained, and carried out in full. Even as the Consultatium expands to take in the new Knight-Consultants, the sortition number will be expanded.

    The new Consultatium will be turned to to help the Consul fulfil the First Conclusion in full in peacetime, including policies that seek to encourage social cohesion and curb any growing threats. The Dain, obviously now that he has lost his unjust possession of Erth, has sent more nebulous threats to us, like disease, unemployment, etc. Every industry will see state support to return to its pre-war state, and even further!

    Minor Goal 1
    A Consul and a Funeral
    Early on in her time in power, she will seek to complete her dear mother’s plans for a memorial to herself (which Astra considers slightly vain, but she won’t say such). It will be the only expense she seeks before the Crusade.

    Minor Goal 2
    Le Morte d'Astra
    Unlike her mother, she will not seek to live forever. She will appoint a niece of hers as her heir, having no children of her own, and seek to train that niece as much as possible to be the new leader. Once she believes her time is somewhat near, she will make preparations for her own funeral.

    It will not be a traditional Primusian funeral, but be a cremation like her mother's. Her body will be burnt, and the ashes scattered to the winds of Paradise. The person who will do the scattering will be specially chosen, a cleaner-caste orphan son of a posthumous Knight of the Round Table. If the preparations go well, he will scatter the ashes of Astra Nielsen on a windy day in front of a solemn audience.

    She will make sure to write in her final letter that all this is the will of the Primus.

    A cenotaph will be commissioned of course for the mausoleum her mother created.
    Last edited:
    rando thing
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    Washingtonian claimants to the American Empire - 1789-present
    No. Someone else has, and there's conflicting claims, so no.

    Adamsian claimants to the American Empire - 1797-present
    John I (Adams) 1797-1826
    John II and I (Adams) 1826-1848
    [also claimant in his own right as John I from 1825]
    Mary I (Adams) 1848-1859 [daughter of Prince John, who deceased before John II and I]
    John III and II (Johnson) 1859-1938
    William I (Johnson) 1938-1940
    John IV and III (Johnson) 1940-1953
    [brother of William I]
    Winters (Johnson) 1953-2002
    Eric (Johnson) 2002-present

    Jeffersonian claimants to the American Empire - 1801-present
    Thomas I (Jefferson) 1801-1826
    Martha I (Jefferson) 1826-1836
    Thomas II (Randolph) 1836-1875
    George I (Randolph) 1875-1893
    Francis I (Randolph) 1893-1922
    [brother of George I]
    Charlotte (Randolph) 1922-1935
    Caroline (Rafferty) 1935-1995
    Anne (Rafferty) 1995-2010
    [sister of Caroline]
    Sara (Barnes) 2010-present
  • Turquoise Blue

    Tsundoku Tibby
    Patreon supporter
    The Land of the Trembling Star (UK)
    Monarchs of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (-1920)
    Victoria (Hanover) 1837-1901
    Edward VII (Saxe-Coburg-Gotha) 1901-1910
    George V (Saxe-Coburg-Gotha) 1910-1920

    Monarchs of the Kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland (1920-1934)
    Robert IV (Wittelsbach) 1920-1934
    [also King of Bavaria]

    Monarchs of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (1934-)
    George V (Saxe-Coburg-Gotha) 1934-


    Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (-1920)
    Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury (Conservative) 1895-1902
    Arthur Balfour (Conservative) 1902-1905

    Edward Grey (Liberal) 1905-1918

    Robert Crewe-Milnes, 1st Marquess of Crewe (Liberal) 1918-1920

    Prime Ministers of the Kingdom of England (1920-1934)
    Herbert Vivian ("Jacobite" Liberal) 1920-1927

    Gilbert Baird Fraser (Tory) 1927-1931
    Winston Churchill ("Jacobite" Liberal, then Liberal) 1931-1934

    Prime Ministers of the Kingdom of Scotland (1920-1934)
    Theodore Napier (Scottish Unionist) 1920-1924

    Ruaraidh Erskine ("Jacobite" Liberal) 1924-1927
    Reginald Lindesay-Bethune, 12th Earl of Lindsay (Scottish Unionist) 1927-1933
    Noel Skelton (Scottish Unionist) 1933-1934

    Prime Ministers of the Kingdom of Ireland (1920-1934)
    W. B. Yeats (White Rose) 1920-1933
    [symbolic: real power was in the "Jacobite Junto"]
    William Redmond (Irish Parliamentary) 1933-1934

    Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (1934-)
    Herbert Sackville, 9th Earl De La Warr (Liberal-Labour) 1934-

    Write-up eventually coming. Hoping to submit this as part of the 10th challenge.