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Expansion of the Empire: where to?

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Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 12:21 am

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After the successful integration of San Martin and Lynx into the Old Star Kingdom, the the Talbott Quadrant into the Empire and I suppose the eventual integration of half of Silesia (after the campaign for admission with the slogan "Sillies, don't be silly" carries the day), where is the Star Empire of Manticore going to expand to?

There are two routes for expansion: via hyperspace and via the Junction. Let's start with the former and admit we don't know anything about what lies between Manticore and the League and, for that matter, much of what's between it and the Andermani Empire and the up and down Galactic directions. We know the Haven Sector is way past the usual Verge, so any systems over there are probably typical Verge systems, like we saw in Talbott and Mandras Sectors. Seeing the success of Talbott, those systems would probably want to join up, but given we don't know anything about them, we can't really speculate.

But towards Haven and towards Basilisk, we know a lot of systems. Moreover, many of those were systems that joined up in the Manticoran Alliance and thus benefited from Manticoran investment and reduced Junction fees. I can easily imagine Alizon, Zanzibar, Casca, Minorca, Minette or Zuckerman want to apply. I can see any of them getting the ball rolling, but Idaho would be a very telling one. And of course, Grayson, but more on that later.

Then we have the Junction. In alphabetical order:

Basilisk. The Stilties are still a couple of centuries away from requesting admission. Until then, the Basilisk System remains a Protectorate. We don't know much of what's past Basilisk. But since we have hardly hard of any trade being conducted with systems there, just to get to Silesia, I'm guessing there's actually very few (if any) inhabited systems in the first place. On the other hand, given the number of inhabitable systems that exist in the Honorverse, newly settled systems there could be daughter colonies of Manticore.

Beowulf. That leads to the League Core, which usually means no expansion. But now that the League is fracturing, there could be some systems requesting admission, especially the independent ones who were targeted by Operation Buccaneer, like Cachalot. And then there's the Republic of Beowulf-Hypatia, which would be an enormously big addition to the Empire, but I don't think will happen. Like Grayson, see below.

Gregor. Like Beowulf, leads to a settled region with strong government: the Andermani Empire. There's no room for expansion here, short of the Empire itself, once the integration of Silesia happens. With one exception: Sidemore. Given how much Manticore has invested there, I think they may request admission even sooner than the Silesia Quadrant is finished.

Hennesy. Leads to Terra Haute, that leads to Erewhon, which leads to Torch and the Maya Sector. Hennesy itself and portions of the Phoenix Cluster could decide to join, like the Talbott Sector did to become the Quadrant. We don't know much about them, but I expect they were meaningfully richer than Talbott was because of the two wormhole termini there. In turn, Erewhon itself could decide to join, but I don't think it will. I think its path lies with the Maya Sector and those two have another option. Finally, Torch won't join, at least not for a long time. As a newly-independent system, they will want to remain that way for some time.

Lynx. Well, Lynx itself and the Talbott Quadrant are members, but there are further systems out there. First, there are systems like New Tuscany that did not vote to join but could change their minds. I actually see New Tuscany joining in before the end of the decade. Then there's the Madras Sector, led by the Kingdom of Meyers. I think those are very likely to seek admission.

Matapan and the Trucial States. The Star Kingdom had been providing anti-piracy for the Cluster and these are young colonies RFC wrote that "It's not as poverty-stricken a region as the Talbott Cluster was, by a long chalk, but the settlement in the area is fairly recent (mostly little more than a century old, and almost all of it via the Wormhole Junction), and the economies and populations are still growing at fairly modest rates." To me, this makes the Cluster the prime candidate for requestion admission: they have a direct wormhole link to the Junction and existing economic, military, political, and probably cultural ties.

Through Matapan we get to Asgard, which can't join without angering the Andermani... or so was the state up until a few years ago. Now, if Silesia works out, I actually imagine the Asgard Association requesting to join the Andermani.

Trevor's Star. Already a member of the Old Kingdom and through it we get to the Republic of Haven, so no expansion here.

Or is there? This is where things would be for 99.9% of the Honorverse books. But the last chapter of Uncompromising Honor brings in a new possibility: a supra-national association between Manticore and Haven, with Grayson likely joining soon after (Beth said Protector Benjamin wouldn't join at first, but would need to lay the ground work for it). First, I think the Andermani are likely to join too, cementing the Grand Alliance. Second, this is the path I see for the Maya Sector and Erewhon: having just declared independence from the clutches of OFS, they won't give it up, but associate (and I think the MARS and Erewhon join in a single polity).
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by tlb   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 8:34 am

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I am not sure that it is a good idea for the Empire to get "too" big and I am not sure how big it needs to be to be "too" big. The SEM does have tighter political integration than the British Empire did, but still has the same sort of communication lags and other difficulties.

I think a better framework for future expansion is what might be going on between Manticore and Haven: a Union that is economic and military and includes freedom of movement, but retains separate political identity. This might be like a combination of the best points of the European Union and NATO.

It is unknown in our world which will last the longest or have the most beneficial effects: NATO, the European Union or the British Empire. Perhaps my apprehension at a large expansion of the Star Empire of Manticore is undeserved. Since nothing substantial lasts forever, perhaps it is best to try to improve things in the medium term.
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 11:15 am

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tlb wrote:I am not sure that it is a good idea for the Empire to get "too" big and I am not sure how big it needs to be to be "too" big. The SEM does have tighter political integration than the British Empire did, but still has the same sort of communication lags and other difficulties.

I think a better framework for future expansion is what might be going on between Manticore and Haven: a Union that is economic and military and includes freedom of movement, but retains separate political identity. This might be like a combination of the best points of the European Union and NATO.


I agree but that mostly makes sense for established and proven polities. The SEM, the AE, the RoH, the Republic of Beowulf-Hypatia, and the MARS + Erewhon entity, for example, would make a lot of sense to associate, allowing for free trade and free movement of people. Maybe inside that, the SEM + Grayson + RoH have even deeper and freer ties. But I don't see that expanding to the Madras Sector or other impoverished Verge sectors: those can't participate on equal footing. In fact, the only other entity I see being able to join this club, aside from shards of the League we don't know about yet is... the Renaissance Factor.

(Maybe also an entity we know almost nothing about, the Judean League)

Communication lag time is very important, indeed. But even if we limit to clusters within one week's travel from the MBS, that's still most of the former Alliance members (Alizon, Minette, etc.), Matapan, Talbott, Silesia, whatever may be at the frontier via Basilisk, whatever is towards the Andermani and towards the League, and possibly the Phoenix Cluster (if those don't join up with Erewhon+Maya).

It is unknown in our world which will last the longest or have the most beneficial effects: NATO, the European Union or the British Empire. Perhaps my apprehension at a large expansion of the Star Empire of Manticore is undeserved. Since nothing substantial lasts forever, perhaps it is best to try to improve things in the medium term.


In-universe, we have the League having survived for a thousand years. And in fact, both the Star Kingdom and the Andermani Empires, in their current forms, have already outlasted most entities that have existed in the real world. They're about the age of Spain right now. So maybe they figured out a way.

Then there's prolong, which will have a completely unpredictable (in the literal meaning, as in "can't be predicted") in society.
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by Brigade XO   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 3:36 pm

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I think at this point SEM has quite enough on it's plate without growing with systems as members of the Empire.

I am not sure I remember Lynx comming in separately, thought they were inlclued with Talbott Quadrant.

Silesia is an entirely differnt conversation. Unlike the several systems that joined at the same tie in Talbott, the division of Silesia between the Andermani and SEM was not at the requset of the either the Silesian Confederation nor the individual members of it. That is/was a realpolitik answer to several concerns: the Andermani wanting to grow and Silesia was both already a major market and the direction of probable best results as it appears to be both "thicker" with stars and already has a lot of inhabited planest. 1)The historic, long term problem of the Confederation of being both not really working well as a political entity. The massive corruption at the Federal, Planitary Governor and other levells. 3 all sort of piracy (of as many variety as you would like to split them into from outright independent to semi-legale under Letters of Marque, to business operations with Confed or system or just local business intrests as partners. And of course the continueal systems in revlot againt either Confed or their local government. And the Confed Navey was not mostly able to deal with much of that even not getting into that some of the ships were apprently operating as pirates.
So Silesia is going to take a while---a relative long while to become truly funtioning systems within the SEM though it is presented in the books that for the most part the ConFed citizens would really like to get rid of the corruption and have stability and even application of laws. Those things both the AE and SEM will provide and have the ability to back up and enforce.

Actualy, it's the qustion of the independent systems in Silesia that gets interesting. SEM isn't going to force any of the independenet system into the Empire. It will probably make normal (for Manticore" trade agreements/treaties with them as long as they agree to the "standard contract". Not sure how many systems within or close to the Silesia area are indepedent.

Sidemore is a different question. They are just outside the area of Silesia, were already indpendent and have a military basing agreement/treaty with SEM. Unlike much of the rest of Silesia, they didn't have (except for that pirate incursion that took the planet that Harrington "resolved") the corruption or other problems and are already deeply engaged with SEM. It remains to be seen if they request to join or just continue. SEM isn't going to force them, that is not the way SEM treats it's partners.


Beowulf-Hypatia? Are they going to form an actual joint political-multi system one government creation or it going to be more on the lines of the Rembrant Trade Union with miitary treaties and seperate governments.

My take on the original intent of the Harrington Plan was for SEM (and probably alliance partners separately) to make commerical and other agreements with systems that left the League and the independenet systems/ multi-systems political entities. The idea of doing more than setting up normalized trade agreements and other understandings (clear set of laws and policies regurading trade and dealing with ships and citizens of various star nations) would be much better. Manticore doesn't want to run everything, just have clear understanding about how to address stuff.

The RF.......is going to be a problem in the long term as they are a cat's paw of the Alighment and had the Detweiler Plan and the Aligment vision as it's long term goal even if in the short term they will present themselves as a refuge from the problems of the SL.

And we shall see........
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by zyffyr   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 4:05 pm

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:After the successful integration of San Martin and Lynx into the Old Star Kingdom, the the Talbott Quadrant into the Empire and I suppose the eventual integration of half of Silesia (after the campaign for admission with the slogan "Sillies, don't be silly" carries the day), where is the Star Empire of Manticore going to expand to?


Before that question can be answered, you first need to answer "Why are they expanding?"
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by Jonathan_S   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 6:18 pm

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zyffyr wrote:
ThinksMarkedly wrote:After the successful integration of San Martin and Lynx into the Old Star Kingdom, the the Talbott Quadrant into the Empire and I suppose the eventual integration of half of Silesia (after the campaign for admission with the slogan "Sillies, don't be silly" carries the day), where is the Star Empire of Manticore going to expand to?


Before that question can be answered, you first need to answer "Why are they expanding?"

Yep. My first thought is that they wouldn't expand. They just changed their system in a massive way to support absorbing Talbott into the newly formed SEM.

As I understand it their half of Silesia is essetially a protectorate right now; not actual a part of the SEM. So those systems may end up joining, or going totally independent, or even reforming some less corrupt multi-system power.

Getting San Martin recovered from its decades long occupation will require a fair bit of Manticoran resources. Getting Lynx and the rest of Talbott tech, economy, education, and standard of living up to modern standards it likely to take far more - a major effort for at least a few decades. And of course overseeing Silesia as all involved figure out what will happen with the Manti controlled half of it is yet another significant effort.

This isn't a 4X computer game - there's generally no need to expand just for the sake of expansion. So I'd tend to expect Manticore to want to settle back into their historic non-expansion posture and focus on integrating and updating all the territory and people that they did take the very unusual step of accepting into their country. Probably better to be a little smaller but with a well knit together empire than risk growing too quickly to keep it all pulled together.
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 10:23 pm

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Brigade XO wrote:I think at this point SEM has quite enough on it's plate without growing with systems as members of the Empire.


I didn't mean immediately. I meant in the next 20 T-years. Where can the SEM grow?

I am not sure I remember Lynx comming in separately, thought they were inlclued with Talbott Quadrant.


It did. RFC explained that for all intents and purposes, Lynx had requested annexation before Harvest Joy even returned from the initial transit to the Sector. It wasn't until the Lynx annexation was in process (or concluded, not sure) that Bernardus Van Dort had the incredible idea that this was the best way to avoid eventual OFS annexation of the RTU and other nearby worlds. When they all began demanding annexation, Manticore asked that the hold a constitutional convention to draft the Quadrant Constitution and at the same time they came up with the Empire.

Lynx is not a member of the Talbott Quadrant, it's actually part of the Old Star Kingdom, along with Manticore, Sphinx, Gryphon, San Martin, and Medusa.

Silesia is an entirely differnt conversation. [...]
So Silesia is going to take a while---a relative long while to become truly funtioning systems within the SEM though it is presented in the books that for the most part the ConFed citizens would really like to get rid of the corruption and have stability and even application of laws. Those things both the AE and SEM will provide and have the ability to back up and enforce.


I'm not doubting anything you say. But I don't see how it's relevant. The Silesian Quadrant doesn't exist yet as of the end of UH and if any systems have already voted for annexation, we aren't told. Adm. Sarnow is still there, last we heard. But we are told that he's not taking any crap from old corrupt officials who thing it's going to be "same old." And he can easily show it wasn't like that in Talbott -- quod vide former Pres. Aleksandra Tonkovic from the Split System.

Actualy, it's the qustion of the independent systems in Silesia that gets interesting. SEM isn't going to force any of the independenet system into the Empire. It will probably make normal (for Manticore" trade agreements/treaties with them as long as they agree to the "standard contract". Not sure how many systems within or close to the Silesia area are indepedent.

Sidemore is a different question. They are just outside the area of Silesia, were already indpendent and have a military basing agreement/treaty with SEM. Unlike much of the rest of Silesia, they didn't have (except for that pirate incursion that took the planet that Harrington "resolved") the corruption or other problems and are already deeply engaged with SEM. It remains to be seen if they request to join or just continue. SEM isn't going to force them, that is not the way SEM treats it's partners.


Same answer for both: there are benefits to being part of the Star Empire of Manticore that aren't awarded to trade partners. What they are, I can't tell you exactly... RFC has never developed the economics of the Honorverse as well as he has developed the politics, military, and some of the science. There must be some direct investments from the Crown that wouldn't exist otherwise; there would be lower barriers of movement, etc.

The interesting thing is whether this Haven-Manticore Union/Association provides most of those benefits. In real life, one of the core precepts of the European Union is the free movement of people, goods and capital: that means any citizen of one member country can set up residence in any other, attend school there (and vote) without requesting permission to; there are no trade barriers with import/export taxation; one can invest and transfer money anywhere in the Union (and EEA). If the new association provides those and the requirements for other systems to become members is low enough, they may opt for that instead of annexation into the Star Empire.

Beowulf-Hypatia? Are they going to form an actual joint political-multi system one government creation or it going to be more on the lines of the Rembrant Trade Union with miitary treaties and seperate governments.


UH did say they had opted for association with Beowulf, but did not give details of what exactly that is.
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sun Sep 20, 2020 10:33 pm

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Jonathan_S wrote:
zyffyr wrote:Before that question can be answered, you first need to answer "Why are they expanding?"

Yep. My first thought is that they wouldn't expand. They just changed their system in a massive way to support absorbing Talbott into the newly formed SEM.


Good questions. My answer is in two parts:

First, it's not "just changed." I am asking in a long-term perspective: in the next 20-30 T-years, where would it grow to?

Second, why does it need to grow at all? It's not about Manticore wanting more systems in the Empire, it's about other systems requesting admission. There's now precedence for that, with San Martin, Lynx, the Talbott Quadrant and the Silesian Quadrant. And with a decade of growth in Lynx and Talbott showing how membership in the Empire provides stability and prosperity, why wouldn't other systems want to join? I can see a lot of systems popping up and saying "me! me! me!"

As I understand it their half of Silesia is essetially a protectorate right now; not actual a part of the SEM. So those systems may end up joining, or going totally independent, or even reforming some less corrupt multi-system power.


Correct, that's why I started with "after they've voted to join."
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by munroburton   » Mon Sep 21, 2020 2:50 am

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:Good questions. My answer is in two parts:

First, it's not "just changed." I am asking in a long-term perspective: in the next 20-30 T-years, where would it grow to?

Second, why does it need to grow at all? It's not about Manticore wanting more systems in the Empire, it's about other systems requesting admission. There's now precedence for that, with San Martin, Lynx, the Talbott Quadrant and the Silesian Quadrant. And with a decade of growth in Lynx and Talbott showing how membership in the Empire provides stability and prosperity, why wouldn't other systems want to join? I can see a lot of systems popping up and saying "me! me! me!"


20-30 years isn't really that long-term. IIRC, the constitutional arrangements of Talbott's annexation will take 75 years to give the Talbotters "full" membership. The Silesians' 75-year clock hasn't even started yet.

I don't think they'll be wanting to expand any more for a century. San Martin and Lynx got into the old Kingdom so fast because they brought the best-claim to their respective wormhole termini with them. Only Beowulf and maybe Gregor could pull that off now.

Anyone else is going to have to demonstrate enough value to the Empire in order to justify giving them a piece of the MWJ revenue and obliging the RMN to defend them. Otherwise, they're courting the same problems the People's Republic did with trying to maintain an empire of hardscrabble frontier systems.
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Re: Expansion of the Empire: where to?
Post by Theemile   » Mon Sep 21, 2020 7:23 am

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munroburton wrote:
ThinksMarkedly wrote:Good questions. My answer is in two parts:

First, it's not "just changed." I am asking in a long-term perspective: in the next 20-30 T-years, where would it grow to?

Second, why does it need to grow at all? It's not about Manticore wanting more systems in the Empire, it's about other systems requesting admission. There's now precedence for that, with San Martin, Lynx, the Talbott Quadrant and the Silesian Quadrant. And with a decade of growth in Lynx and Talbott showing how membership in the Empire provides stability and prosperity, why wouldn't other systems want to join? I can see a lot of systems popping up and saying "me! me! me!"


20-30 years isn't really that long-term. IIRC, the constitutional arrangements of Talbott's annexation will take 75 years to give the Talbotters "full" membership. The Silesians' 75-year clock hasn't even started yet.

I don't think they'll be wanting to expand any more for a century. San Martin and Lynx got into the old Kingdom so fast because they brought the best-claim to their respective wormhole termini with them. Only Beowulf and maybe Gregor could pull that off now.

Anyone else is going to have to demonstrate enough value to the Empire in order to justify giving them a piece of the MWJ revenue and obliging the RMN to defend them. Otherwise, they're courting the same problems the People's Republic did with trying to maintain an empire of hardscrabble frontier systems.


My thoughts as well, The SEM is not looking to grow and has alot on it's plate at the moment - and many foreseeable moments - with a couple of notes

Then only habitable planet in the Gregor system is in Andermani hands; the 1/2 of the Binary star that Manticore holds has no habitable planet. So I don't see that changing.

While Trevor's star is in Manticore hands, there were 20 systems near it that were held by Manticore between the wars that were given a plebiscite by Haven after their recapture - Havenite rule, Manticore rule, or freedom. We don't know which way any voted, so potentially Manticore may have another node of 20 planets who voluntarily want to join Manticore.

Matapan - Matapan is a cluster of stars that just started getting colonized via the wormhole. Manticore is the de facto policing power in the region, but each planet is a sovereign nation. Currently, these young colonies started because they wanted to leave the shackles of another power. Economic hardship might change this and make some of these stars voluntarily join the SKM.
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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