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Torch Navy

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Re: Torch Navy
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sat Mar 14, 2020 6:39 pm

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tlb wrote:Do we have textual evidence of that? Mesa was not part of the Solarian League, because slavery was officially illegal (but winked at). From Crown of Slaves, chapter 36:
The navies of most civilized powers subscribed to the theory that the slave trade constituted an offense against humanity. The Solarian League had certainly taken that position for centuries, and had pursued an official policy directed toward its eventual eradication for just as long. The Solarian approach was based on an entire network of interlocking bilateral treaty agreements with its independent neighbors, coupled with bureaucratic fiat within its own territory or that under the jurisdiction of the OFS.


Of which part? That Manpower was a transtellar or that there could be other planets with genetic slavery allowed? If you meant the latter, then banning it in the SL doesn't mean anything to everyone outside of it. Yes, trade agreements would have locked out anyone who wanted to trade with the SL, but all the little guys in the Verge that received little commerce in the first place would be free to still have it. They'd receive direct investment from a wealthy company, which usually meant embezzling into the ruling elite's pockets. Especially if those deals were kept quiet.

As for production centres, they don't need to be in inhabited systems in the first place. Yildun wasn't habitable and just look at how important it is.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by tlb   » Sat Mar 14, 2020 6:59 pm

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tlb wrote:Do we have textual evidence of that? Mesa was not part of the Solarian League, because slavery was officially illegal (but winked at). From Crown of Slaves, chapter 36:
The navies of most civilized powers subscribed to the theory that the slave trade constituted an offense against humanity. The Solarian League had certainly taken that position for centuries, and had pursued an official policy directed toward its eventual eradication for just as long. The Solarian approach was based on an entire network of interlocking bilateral treaty agreements with its independent neighbors, coupled with bureaucratic fiat within its own territory or that under the jurisdiction of the OFS.

ThinksMarkedly wrote:Of which part? That Manpower was a transtellar or that there could be other planets with genetic slavery allowed? If you meant the latter, then banning it in the SL doesn't mean anything to everyone outside of it. Yes, trade agreements would have locked out anyone who wanted to trade with the SL, but all the little guys in the Verge that received little commerce in the first place would be free to still have it. They'd receive direct investment from a wealthy company, which usually meant embezzling into the ruling elite's pockets. Especially if those deals were kept quiet.

As for production centres, they don't need to be in inhabited systems in the first place. Yildun wasn't habitable and just look at how important it is.

I am asking what evidence you have that Manpower Incorporated has genetic slave production centers off of Mesa? But I will add that evidence of any other planet, not officially part of of Manpower, that allows genetic slavery would also be appreciated.

Note that technically it would also be illegal in any planet in the Verge controlled by OFS; but we know that bribery and corruption supply ways around that. But with Manpower closed down, what would supply any future bribes?
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by drothgery   » Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:17 pm

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tlb wrote:I am asking what evidence you have that Manpower Incorporated has genetic slave production centers off of Mesa? But I will add that evidence of any other planet, not officially part of of Manpower, that allows genetic slavery would also be appreciated.

There's textev that Manpower had a production center on Congo prior to it becoming Torch, and while Mesa nominally owned the planet then, it seems probable that if they put one there, they put others in off-Mesa locations.

And there's at least one planet (IIRC, near Silesia but not in the Confederacy) which was forced to ban the genetic slave trade at gunpoint, but the practice was still legal there. Can't remember the name off the top of my head.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by tlb   » Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:52 pm

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tlb wrote:I am asking what evidence you have that Manpower Incorporated has genetic slave production centers off of Mesa? But I will add that evidence of any other planet, not officially part of of Manpower, that allows genetic slavery would also be appreciated.

drothgery wrote:There's textev that Manpower had a production center on Congo prior to it becoming Torch, and while Mesa nominally owned the planet then, it seems probable that if they put one there, they put others in off-Mesa locations.

And there's at least one planet (IIRC, near Silesia but not in the Confederacy) which was forced to ban the genetic slave trade at gunpoint, but the practice was still legal there. Can't remember the name off the top of my head.

Interesting. I found it in chapter 16 of Crown of Slaves:
But for everyone else in this portion of the galaxy, the place was called Congo. Victor even knew the obscure historical reference from which the name had derived, a place on ancient Earth called "King Leopold's Congo." A colonial hellhole, reborn—and often cited by the Anti-Slavery League and the Renaissance Association as a prime example of the horrors unleashed by the galaxy's toleration of Manpower and Mesa.
Manpower, as it happened, was the Mesan corporation in question and maintained a slave-breeding center there.

So, I was wrong to doubt; because I thought the Long-Range Planning Board would keep more direct control. But that would not be needed to produce existing lines, I guess.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sat Mar 14, 2020 8:36 pm

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tlb wrote:So, I was wrong to doubt; because I thought the Long-Range Planning Board would keep more direct control. But that would not be needed to produce existing lines, I guess.


Who says they didn't control? Just because the production centres for the slaves were "off-shore" doesn't mean that it wasn't closely supervised by the LRPB. The LRPB was most interested (apparently) on the Alpha, Beta and Gamma lines of Mesans, on their own uplift, but they used Manpower and the genetic slaves as test subjects.

It's not very different from multi-national companies (MNC) in our world today. All of the Intellectual Property is owned by their headquarters and much of their R&D is still in the "high wage" countries, while manufacturing is offshore in lower wage ones. Think of Apple Corp, for example: the designs of their products are all in Cupertino, Calif., even if the actual manufacturing is subcontracted to Foxconn in China. Their product boxes don't say "Made in the USA", but they do say "Designed in Cupertino" (or "Designed in California", can't remember).

So a transstellar company -- a name which really is a parallel to transnational company, though I've more often heard as MNC -- could still control everything from their HQ, despite production centres scattered throughout the Galaxy. And Manpower and the Mesan Alignment would have to: Mesa would be a single point of failure. As a company, Manpower needed to have production elsewhere in case someone came knocking on Mesa's door. And as the alignment, the Detweilers needed a fallback plan.

Note that technically it would also be illegal in any planet in the Verge controlled by OFS; but we know that bribery and corruption supply ways around that. But with Manpower closed down, what would supply any future bribes?


That's indeed a good point: no one. The smart governments will quickly realise the winds have shifted and will proceed to ban slavery, demand the shutting down of any production centres in their territory. That way they get to keep some degree of control of what happens to them. The not-so-smart ones will get a visit from the RTN and will be forced at gunpoint to abandon the practice, immediately emancipate the slaves and maybe even pay reparations.

That's why I said I don't think genetic slavery will last as a de jure institution for more than a decade.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by tlb   » Sat Mar 14, 2020 9:18 pm

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:So a transstellar company -- a name which really is a parallel to transnational company, though I've more often heard as MNC -- could still control everything from their HQ, despite production centres scattered throughout the Galaxy. And Manpower and the Mesan Alignment would have to: Mesa would be a single point of failure. As a company, Manpower needed to have production elsewhere in case someone came knocking on Mesa's door. And as the alignment, the Detweilers needed a fallback plan.

I expect (but that has proved wrong before) that any new lines were developed on Mesa under the direct supervision and control of the LRPB and the remote breeding sites are only for lines that have been completely tested and released to production. But I also expect (ditto) that the dispersed production centers were for economic reasons, since the company fails once someone kicks in the door at Mesa. Unless the computer in the Manpower accounting department was also blown up, all those remote centers will become known.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Sun Mar 15, 2020 8:00 am

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tlb wrote:I expect (but that has proved wrong before) that any new lines were developed on Mesa under the direct supervision and control of the LRPB and the remote breeding sites are only for lines that have been completely tested and released to production. But I also expect (ditto) that the dispersed production centers were for economic reasons, since the company fails once someone kicks in the door at Mesa. Unless the computer in the Manpower accounting department was also blown up, all those remote centers will become known.


I agree with you in those: R&D was done in Mesa, especially since it was LRPB directing it, not actual Manpower. Manpower designed the slave lines out of what the LRPB "declassified", but often got told what to include in their lines anyway for the Alignment's testing needs. That would be akin in our world to the tech companies receiving software and hardware blocks from the CIA or the NSA that they need to include in their products (I'm told this doesn't happen).

As for where those production centres are, as a company, yes, accounting should have a full roster, though the information may not be easy to find. Manpower was clearly seen as a black sheep, so they might have taken extraordinary steps to hide the production lines. That won't include secret MAlign facilities, of course.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by Brigade XO   » Mon Mar 16, 2020 11:14 am

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If I'm remembering correctly, Congo was a high risk place for the slaves as it had a lot of native fauna that was killing them off. There was also the distance from Mesa to Congo and that would have made for a lot of shipping of slaves which could lead to a situation where people such as RMN and the Erwhon navy running commerce protection in the area and picking off slavers. The other thing was that while there is that wormhole network that nobody else knows about, it wouldn't have been a good idea to run too many ships with slave cargos though it because that would run up the activity both at the Congo end and the star by Mannerheim.

So set up a production facility on Congo and produce your workforce there. Just cold business thinking of knowing your going to have a high rate of worker loss from harvesting the biological products of Congo and just as large a need to expand the workforce to increase operations. It's a whole planet.

As far as other remote or franchise operations of Manpower's slave production, it would depend on the size of operation, the political situation if on a planet and the types of slave lines being produced. There may still be a market in given areas for continued profitable sales.

Of course the smart option might be to convert the operations to other biological tec including growth of replacement organs/body parts and set up to produce Prolong for sale. Remember, the basic facilities are essentialy high end genetics labs and bio production operations. You have the people and facilities, you don't have to start from scratch and there is a market for Prolong. Heck, you could possibly manufactured and ship Prolong to places in the Talbot Sector or even Silesia at lower costs than Manticore can produce it (and they still have a lot of calls to produce other things now to continue to replace their orbital infrastructure) so there would be a market. Say in sets of 50,000 to 100,000 compleast series for that number of individuals per shipment. Or go with packaging of 250 sets each for ease of distribution to medical centers and clinics aound a planet.
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Re: Torch Navy
Post by Maldorian   » Mon Mar 16, 2020 11:26 am

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I could be that there are more factories that create slaves, but it is also possible that Mesa was the only place were they create the embryos of the slaves and ship them to other places to raise them.

It is very common in our industrialied farming, that one fare only breed animals and other farms buy them to raise them.

If I remember correct, it is even today no problem to freeze an embryo and put it later in a female body to let it grow.

And you all know what control freaks the Alignment people are, so, engeneer and create the embryos of the slaves at Mesa and ship them to raising facilities sounds for me like an perfect solution to keep control.
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