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Size of Nations

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Re: Size of Nations
Post by Brigade XO   » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:12 am

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There are vast differences between Talbott Cluster, San Martin and the Manticorian half of Silesia.
San Martin had been a long time friendly neighbor and trading partner at the other end of an long established terminus of the Junction. Manticore accepted it's refugees when the Peeps attacked, it fought for them in the recovery of that end of the terminus and it poured help in- and essentilay helped them reestablish their original government after it drove the Peeps out of the San Martin system- apparently no strings attached. San Martin had an excelent education and medical system along with being a developed world and appears to have an open and functional democracy prior to the Peep conquest and they have returned to that.

Talbott Cluster- those who joined the Empire- did that voluntarily. Dispite the various problems outlined in the Convention with people manuvering to maintain levels or privilege and exclusive political control (and the couple violent anti-annexation groups), they have come on-board.
There are/were a lot of different political systems and power structures but the ultimate aim of those who worked this out was to avoid the voracious appetite and servitude of being "protected" by OFS when it arrived. While there are vast differences in development, economic situation, education, and industry amoung the systems, they have accepted Manticorian Law and the rest of the package because it is an actual, function legal system which allows for participation and protection of it's citizens. Even handed protection with the availability of ways to improve themselves (all the citizens, not just the former controling political establishments). They also, like San Martin, understand that they have to actualy participate to make this work.

Silesia is a very different situation. Not only was it a mess politicaly and riven through with corruption at many levels, there was no true or effective cooperation at so many levels with much of the "leadership" of the various systems and the various power groups in the economic areas at both planetary and larger areas. This was totaly invasive and it sounded like you had to participate at every level in the same cesspit just to live.
Silesia didn't get a choice. The new systems (Aldermani or Manticorian) were imposed on them by force. A less brutal form of gunboat diplomacy, comming in and imposing order along with a new system with a cleaning out of the rats and crooks.
Kind of like fixing a large collection of failed Banana Republics and 3rd World Dictatorships linked by various Mafia and Tong like connections having been poorly ruled over by a particularly corrupt and ineffective United Nations. Like the SL/OFS dealing with the Verge only worse.
There are NOW actual laws that WILL be enforced and the old ways of doing business will have to change because bothe the Aldermani and Manticore isn't going to put up with the continual violence and problems they have had to deal with for centuries. Everybody in each half of Silesia is going to have to live with and abide by the same set of laws as the rest of their systems in the respective new Empire owners. Not bad laws either and they will be enforced. It will take time for people to get used to them but they will have to abide by them or suffer the results. That's not to say that the majority of the populations are crooks or just bad people but it will take them time to adjust which is one reason why the time frame and conditions for local semi self-government is timed and conditional on being able to demonstrate building a working system within the laws and participation by the population.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by ldwechsler   » Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:28 pm

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Brigade XO wrote:There are vast differences between Talbott Cluster, San Martin and the Manticorian half of Silesia.
San Martin had been a long time friendly neighbor and trading partner at the other end of an long established terminus of the Junction. Manticore accepted it's refugees when the Peeps attacked, it fought for them in the recovery of that end of the terminus and it poured help in- and essentilay helped them reestablish their original government after it drove the Peeps out of the San Martin system- apparently no strings attached. San Martin had an excelent education and medical system along with being a developed world and appears to have an open and functional democracy prior to the Peep conquest and they have returned to that.

Talbott Cluster- those who joined the Empire- did that voluntarily. Dispite the various problems outlined in the Convention with people manuvering to maintain levels or privilege and exclusive political control (and the couple violent anti-annexation groups), they have come on-board.
There are/were a lot of different political systems and power structures but the ultimate aim of those who worked this out was to avoid the voracious appetite and servitude of being "protected" by OFS when it arrived. While there are vast differences in development, economic situation, education, and industry amoung the systems, they have accepted Manticorian Law and the rest of the package because it is an actual, function legal system which allows for participation and protection of it's citizens. Even handed protection with the availability of ways to improve themselves (all the citizens, not just the former controling political establishments). They also, like San Martin, understand that they have to actualy participate to make this work.

Silesia is a very different situation. Not only was it a mess politicaly and riven through with corruption at many levels, there was no true or effective cooperation at so many levels with much of the "leadership" of the various systems and the various power groups in the economic areas at both planetary and larger areas. This was totaly invasive and it sounded like you had to participate at every level in the same cesspit just to live.
Silesia didn't get a choice. The new systems (Aldermani or Manticorian) were imposed on them by force. A less brutal form of gunboat diplomacy, comming in and imposing order along with a new system with a cleaning out of the rats and crooks.
Kind of like fixing a large collection of failed Banana Republics and 3rd World Dictatorships linked by various Mafia and Tong like connections having been poorly ruled over by a particularly corrupt and ineffective United Nations. Like the SL/OFS dealing with the Verge only worse.
There are NOW actual laws that WILL be enforced and the old ways of doing business will have to change because bothe the Aldermani and Manticore isn't going to put up with the continual violence and problems they have had to deal with for centuries. Everybody in each half of Silesia is going to have to live with and abide by the same set of laws as the rest of their systems in the respective new Empire owners. Not bad laws either and they will be enforced. It will take time for people to get used to them but they will have to abide by them or suffer the results. That's not to say that the majority of the populations are crooks or just bad people but it will take them time to adjust which is one reason why the time frame and conditions for local semi self-government is timed and conditional on being able to demonstrate building a working system within the laws and participation by the population.


That's basically what I've written. Adding one planet as a neighbor and now member is one thing. Adding a whole lot of others, ones with very different cultures, is another. And Silesia is really very different.

That's why governments that are very large have problems. What would work for Planet Manticore might, with minor adjustments, works for Sphynx and Gryphon. And even there we see cultural issues (note Gryphon highlanders). But when a lot more planets with their own histories are added in, nothing is simple.

To use a non-political example, the US and Britain have many things in common but a common government would almost certainly not work. Note that Canada which has deeper ties essentially runs its own affairs.

The Solarian League only held together because there was nothing around to oppose it.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by Jonathan_S   » Tue Dec 26, 2017 12:41 pm

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Brigade XO wrote:There are vast differences between Talbott Cluster, San Martin and the Manticorian half of Silesia.
There are also vast differences in communication time. The Star Kingdom is limited to those planets closest to Manticore - adding just San Martin and Lynx (a direct terminus, and a couple LY beyond the terminus). Those have short enough communication loops to be part of the established government. Greater Talbott and Silesia would require a different method of governing even if they were otherwise similar to San Martin, Lynx, or even Gryphon -- simply because with communications taking weeks instead of hours you need a different structure; they can't effectively be centrally managed from Manticore.

That, as much as their existing educational and corruption problems is why Manticore created the Star Empire to govern the more far flung systems.
Last edited by Jonathan_S on Wed Dec 27, 2017 12:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by ldwechsler   » Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:55 am

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Jonathan_S wrote:
Brigade XO wrote:There are vast differences between Talbott Cluster, San Martin and the Manticorian half of Silesia.
There are also vast differences in communication time. The Star Kingdom is limited to those planets closest to Manticore - adding just San Martin and Lynx (a direct terminus, and a could LY beyond the terminus). Those have short enough communication loops to be part of the established government. Greater Talbott and Silesia would require a different method of governing even if they were otherwise similar to San Martin, Lynx, or even Gryphon -- simply because with communications taking weeks instead of hours you need a different structure; they can't effectively be centrally managed from Manticore.

That, as much as their existing educational and corruption problems is why Manticore created the Star Empire to govern the more far flung systems.


It's not just that; it's different cultures. Pequod, Montana, New Tuscancy and Rembrandt all have very different cultures. They are unlikely to change readily.

For a modern analogy, look to the Soviet Union. Estonia and Uzbekistan have wildly different cultures yet were under one government. Which eventually failed.

For something like the League and even the new Star Empire, there needs to be more local rule.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by Brigade XO   » Wed Dec 27, 2017 11:01 pm

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Local rule is something that will have to be parsed out in the terms of the Talbott Quadrant Agreement. We don't have all the details. There will be things that are permitted at the local level that may not be specificaly addressed at the Empire level but in general, the "new" citizens will have all the rights and responsibilities (and limitations under law) the the original Manticorian citizens have.
There will have to be certain things that will HAVE to mesh with the laws governing the rest of the Empire. Their version of the Uniform Code of Military Justice is only one of those. Then you are going to have to put in-place all the insystem and interstellar merchant marine operating regulations which will require the SEM flagged shipping to meet or exceed the regulations for operations and equipment.
While there will be variations for things like religious observations, that will be primarily along the lines of: you can't violate SEM Laws in the practicing of your religion. Treason and other capital crimes will fall under the Empire standards and text, not local planetary regulations.
Fraud will also be under Empire statues. So will ligitimate business practices and banking regulations. I would expect medical and similar types of law will also have to come into line with SEM law.
Local holidays (local planitary Landing days etc) will be in addition to any otherwise Empire wide celebrations. Local tax codes are going to, in general, match with SEM law though there may be variations- typicaly additions- for certain purposes and have to meet Empire legal criteria.
At this point, it would appear that everybody in what is now the SEM is using "Standard English" for contracts and education. You can have other languages but the official language is going to be the one the military, the courts, the lawyers and the educators use along with the government.

That the Aldermani may use "German" as their standard language doesn't mean that they don't also have "Standard" as a 2nd language. Nobody has mentioned that any of the systems that are now part of the SEM have used any kind of other language that Standard as the formal language. That is going to make it interesting if the Aldermani have to force their half of Silesia to adopt German as the language of communication and contracts, particularly since nobody has mentioned something like that in the commercial dealing of the various merchant shipping that has traded out there for years (including Bladenfinch) or the Solly flagged or Transtellar run ships.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by ldwechsler   » Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:04 pm

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Brigade XO wrote:Local rule is something that will have to be parsed out in the terms of the Talbott Quadrant Agreement. We don't have all the details. There will be things that are permitted at the local level that may not be specificaly addressed at the Empire level but in general, the "new" citizens will have all the rights and responsibilities (and limitations under law) the the original Manticorian citizens have.
There will have to be certain things that will HAVE to mesh with the laws governing the rest of the Empire. Their version of the Uniform Code of Military Justice is only one of those. Then you are going to have to put in-place all the insystem and interstellar merchant marine operating regulations which will require the SEM flagged shipping to meet or exceed the regulations for operations and equipment.
While there will be variations for things like religious observations, that will be primarily along the lines of: you can't violate SEM Laws in the practicing of your religion. Treason and other capital crimes will fall under the Empire standards and text, not local planetary regulations.
Fraud will also be under Empire statues. So will ligitimate business practices and banking regulations. I would expect medical and similar types of law will also have to come into line with SEM law.
Local holidays (local planitary Landing days etc) will be in addition to any otherwise Empire wide celebrations. Local tax codes are going to, in general, match with SEM law though there may be variations- typicaly additions- for certain purposes and have to meet Empire legal criteria.
At this point, it would appear that everybody in what is now the SEM is using "Standard English" for contracts and education. You can have other languages but the official language is going to be the one the military, the courts, the lawyers and the educators use along with the government.

That the Aldermani may use "German" as their standard language doesn't mean that they don't also have "Standard" as a 2nd language. Nobody has mentioned that any of the systems that are now part of the SEM have used any kind of other language that Standard as the formal language. That is going to make it interesting if the Aldermani have to force their half of Silesia to adopt German as the language of communication and contracts, particularly since nobody has mentioned something like that in the commercial dealing of the various merchant shipping that has traded out there for years (including Bladenfinch) or the Solly flagged or Transtellar run ships.


Are you certain that German is the standard language? After all, Standard seems to be the standard language everywhere else. It would make little sense to focus on a language with limited use.

Even on earth today, English is becoming standard for the educated classes everywhere. It is the most ubiquitous language.
Yes, there are probably more people speaking Mandarin than any other language and maybe Arabic, but any place you go there will be English speakers.

Even the French, who make a fetish of their language (and it is beautiful) now work hard at learning English.

I think some variation of that...and it could go a lot of ways would become Standard.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by kzt   » Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:56 pm

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ldwechsler wrote:Are you certain that German is the standard language? After all, Standard seems to be the standard language everywhere else. It would make little sense to focus on a language with limited use.

It's possible David Weber was lying to us when he told us that it was German, both in print and person. But I doubt it.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by ywing14   » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:54 pm

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ldwechsler wrote:
Brigade XO wrote:Local rule is something that will have to be parsed out in the terms of the Talbott Quadrant Agreement. We don't have all the details. There will be things that are permitted at the local level that may not be specificaly addressed at the Empire level but in general, the "new" citizens will have all the rights and responsibilities (and limitations under law) the the original Manticorian citizens have.
There will have to be certain things that will HAVE to mesh with the laws governing the rest of the Empire. Their version of the Uniform Code of Military Justice is only one of those. Then you are going to have to put in-place all the insystem and interstellar merchant marine operating regulations which will require the SEM flagged shipping to meet or exceed the regulations for operations and equipment.
While there will be variations for things like religious observations, that will be primarily along the lines of: you can't violate SEM Laws in the practicing of your religion. Treason and other capital crimes will fall under the Empire standards and text, not local planetary regulations.
Fraud will also be under Empire statues. So will ligitimate business practices and banking regulations. I would expect medical and similar types of law will also have to come into line with SEM law.
Local holidays (local planitary Landing days etc) will be in addition to any otherwise Empire wide celebrations. Local tax codes are going to, in general, match with SEM law though there may be variations- typicaly additions- for certain purposes and have to meet Empire legal criteria.
At this point, it would appear that everybody in what is now the SEM is using "Standard English" for contracts and education. You can have other languages but the official language is going to be the one the military, the courts, the lawyers and the educators use along with the government.

That the Aldermani may use "German" as their standard language doesn't mean that they don't also have "Standard" as a 2nd language. Nobody has mentioned that any of the systems that are now part of the SEM have used any kind of other language that Standard as the formal language. That is going to make it interesting if the Aldermani have to force their half of Silesia to adopt German as the language of communication and contracts, particularly since nobody has mentioned something like that in the commercial dealing of the various merchant shipping that has traded out there for years (including Bladenfinch) or the Solly flagged or Transtellar run ships.


Are you certain that German is the standard language? After all, Standard seems to be the standard language everywhere else. It would make little sense to focus on a language with limited use.

Even on earth today, English is becoming standard for the educated classes everywhere. It is the most ubiquitous language.
Yes, there are probably more people speaking Mandarin than any other language and maybe Arabic, but any place you go there will be English speakers.

Even the French, who make a fetish of their language (and it is beautiful) now work hard at learning English.

I think some variation of that...and it could go a lot of ways would become Standard.


I forget which book it was, but in it they talk about the about how New Dijon speaks French, San Martin, Spanish, the Andermani German, and Hebrew in the Judean League. But that also places also use standard English. Additionally, in Honor Among Enemies, while visiting the Andermani they mostly use German. Honor mentions that she appreciated the Marine using English instead of German.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by Bluesqueak   » Thu Dec 28, 2017 7:18 pm

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Brigade XO wrote:
That the Aldermani may use "German" as their standard language doesn't mean that they don't also have "Standard" as a 2nd language. Nobody has mentioned that any of the systems that are now part of the SEM have used any kind of other language that Standard as the formal language. That is going to make it interesting if the Aldermani have to force their half of Silesia to adopt German as the language of communication and contracts, particularly since nobody has mentioned something like that in the commercial dealing of the various merchant shipping that has traded out there for years (including Bladenfinch) or the Solly flagged or Transtellar run ships.


If I remember correctly, the Andermani were much more expansionist than Manticore was, and far more used to integrating new conquests. Silesia seems to fit their previous modus operandi - theoretically conquered, but with a lot of their new subjects going "Thank God - at last we're going to have competent and honest government!"

So I suspect they have a well oiled procedure for introducing German, possibly including multiple 'official languages', where the original planetary language has legal rights.

For example, English is the language of communication, contracts and laws in the UK. But if you are Welsh speaking, you can insist on translations, give testimony in Welsh, etc, etc. That's a legal right; Welsh is an official language of the U.K.

If all Imperial business is conducted in German, but the new Imperial subjects have the legal right to use their local language, then Silesian planets will probably become bilingual within a generation or so. Certainly Potsdam seems to be a fusion of German and Chinese.
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Re: Size of Nations
Post by kzt   » Thu Dec 28, 2017 7:42 pm

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Bluesqueak wrote:If all Imperial business is conducted in German, but the new Imperial subjects have the legal right to use their local language, then Silesian planets will probably become bilingual within a generation or so. Certainly Potsdam seems to be a fusion of German and Chinese.

Per David's discussion years ago at Honorcon, it's pretty much all German. There are Chinese cultural elements, like food, but everyone speaks German. It's THE language of the AE.
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