The Coalition of Western Republics is a militarist state basing itself on the American Empire and one of the galaxy's superpowers. Of the three superpowers of the Milky Way, the Coalition is the least populous but possesses the largest navy and industrial base. It runs the most extensive auszeit program in the Milky Way.
The modern Coalition’s system of explicitly modeling itself after Imperial America is not unjustified. The Coalition is one of many remnant governments of the old United States, and like all of them claim it is the official one. The modern Coalition was founded on Columbia after the Endless War, a war between its German-speaking and English-speaking colonists. These colonists were descended from government officials, scientists, corporate executives and other VIPs that fled Earth as part of the New Dawn program. New Dawn was a program commissioned by the American and German governments to escape Earth for a habitable world if nuclear war ever occurs. When it finally did in the early 2240s, the American and German governments moved as many important persons as it could to five ships and left for the Columbia System, roughly sixty thousand light-years away. Once there, official continuations of the old governments were established. Economic issues and cultural friction led to the Endless War, which abolished the national governments and replaced them with a global government, intending to expand throughout the stars to find enough resources to feed its population. The principle of Manifest Destiny, inherited from the Americans, took on a new form: interstellar colonization and conquest. After colonizing several systems, the Coalition eventually found colonies founded by both pre-Collapse and post-Collapse governments, and promptly conquered them or turned them into puppet states.
Politics and Ideology
The Coalition's ideology of National Conservatism can be best described by its distinction from the other two dominant ideologies of the galaxy. Unlike Oligarchical Technocracy or Dijonism, NatCon claims to be a reactionary, traditional ideology, a bulwark against the “radicals.” Its legitimacy is derived from its defense of traditional institutions such as the “free” market, militarism, nationalism and Western culture and religion. It can be said that NatCon totalitarianism comes not from the overthrow of the old system but through its constant praise. Despite all of this, the similarities of NatCon with the other totalitarian ideologies that dominate human governance cannot be ignored.
National Conservatism was formed during the Endless War as an alliance between Imperial American officials that wanted to preserve the Empire and reactionary far-right groups that wanted to go even further and create the “master state.” NatCon ideology dictated that the conflicting nationalist agendas and ideologies allowed by the relatively liberal American Empire led to its downfall. The dictators and emperors of the Empire did not go far enough in suppressing these dissident factions, but once victorious the National Conservative government will do everything in its power to suppress these factions and prevent another civil war. A strict hierarchy must be formed to prevent the “vertical” infighting that tore apart the Empire, the markets, while preserved, must be made loyal to the state through cooperation between the two. The diverse religious institutions must all be made to submit to the State Church, an organ of the state that allows the one true God to be glorified while at the same time uniting the people. And through the divine mission of Manifest Destiny, the people can turn their innate aggression outward to gain land for the state and bring prosperity to all.
The backbone of NatCon is the idea of Social Darwinism. Through the “crucible of conflict,” whether it be the market or the battlefield, weak elements of Coalition society can be purged and no longer drag down Coalition society and cause division. It is imperative that the Coalition state continuously challenge its people, so they do not grow weak, selfish and prone to fighting with one another. Therefore, a free market must be maintained and socialism is the eternal enemy of social Darwinism. Therefore, the Coalition state rewards those that do well through the contract fee system. The prosperous have the option of paying more for the state’s upkeep in exchange for benefits. Through the military, the valorous and the skilled can rise in rank and enter politics; it is only through having higher-rank contract fees or a high enough rank in the military that an individual is eligible for promotion. However, too much freedom in the market is also bad: it caused the hedonism and disunity of the late Empire and many other empires before it. Overly hedonistic material must not be made available for the general public; therefore they require higher-rank contract fees to be legal to own. While corporations have the power to produce what they like, the state has the power to censor what it likes. The market does not possess freedom in the media; the state has sole control of the media, as it is the apparatus by which the will of the people is manipulated. Like Oligarchal Technocracy, propaganda is directed toward the system, not individual leaders, so a single assassin’s bullet does not collapse the state. However, the Directorate of Information is perfectly willing to sell advertising spots and state-approved programs in its propaganda.
NatCon has a very unflattering view on mankind, seeing them as debased, aggressive stupid and selfish by nature. While this can be utilized by the state via the market and the military, it must be subdued at some level. The masses cannot be allowed to have any say in government, for they are easily misled and on the whole stupid. The only practical system is through appointment of the most capable men, but in practice the appointment system is very nepotistic and prone to bribery. The will of the people must also be united under the state, so factionalism doesn’t tear the Coalition apart. Through the use of mass rallies, blue-fodder the State Church and constant propaganda, the will of the masses can be turned toward service to the state’s ideals. Public education is run by the Directorate of Information and is little more than propaganda, but private institutions for higher education does exist for only the wealthiest.
Manifest Destiny is central to NatCon ideology and it can be said that it is the ideology’s ultimate goal. The idea of Manifest Destiny dates back to the old American Republic and had survived throughout the centuries in American political culture. The Coalition state took advantage of this and decreed that the purpose of the state is its constant expansion, both into unexplored systems and those occupied by xenos or other humans. It is the duty of the Coalition people to aid the state in liberating people from tyranny, to eliminate or enslave the xenos that pose a constant threat to humanity and to expand the borders of the state. Living space was necessary for the Coalition people to prosper; without it, they would fight amongst themselves for what they have. Naturally, for Manifest Destiny to be achieved, a massive military must be created and maintained at all times. Even in peacetime, the military must be ready to strike at the enemy in case the enemy displays weakness.
Although the Coalition tries to present an image of hierarchical, monolithic unity, the truth of the matter is the Coalition’s government is fractured into several factions. United only in their subordination to the Supreme Director, fervent hatred of communism and the love of the Coalition’s common values, they all disagree on how best to create the “superior society” that the founders of the Coalition called for. This internal struggle, when brought up, is either vehemently denied or justified as another aspect of Darwinism that helps purify and strengthen the government. In truth, it is another tool for the current Supreme Director's use, playing his subordinates off one another so they never form an alliance against him. This rivalry has led to massive technological disparities among the different factions. Especially notorious is the arms race between the Directorate of Defense, Directorate of State Security and NCPDF, as each wants to develop new weapons independently and get all of the credit.
Although its government and ideology operate on the assumption that the great bulk of mankind is worthless and debased, it is less authoritarian than its more optimistic neighbors. Most of the Coalition government’s efforts go into maintaining its status as superpower and enforcing social policies demanded by its “moral majority.” The belief among the Coalition government is that a system of natural selection can arise in society, where those who are best in their field rise and those who are not fail. The system manifests itself in free markets, and works best without government intervention. To this end, the Coalition supports free markets all throughout the galaxy, while always trying to safeguard its own. The Coalition considers its free market to be its defining characteristic, and accepting it is a large part of being a Coalitionist.
The Coalition is one of the few states in history to make the bold claim that they do not tax their people. If one glances at the Coalition's laws, they would find that this is true: the Coalition government is barred from issuing any taxation laws. In practice, of course, this is not the case. The Coalition's secret police alone eats up more dollars per year than many planetary governments have in their entire economy. The Coalition solves its funding problems mainly through one ingenious method: contract fees. According to Coalition philosophy, all states and societies are nothing more than contracts between individuals to stave off anarchy and bring stability. The purpose of this stability is to create a safe, free market where individuals compete with one another for supremacy. The state exists as a sort of umpire, ensuring that cheating (disrespecting property rights) is not allowed, but in order to do its job the state must have some sort of funding. Taxation is the simplest way to do this, but Coalition ideologues have one problem with taxation: it is coerced payment.
While Coalition ideology has no problem with coercion in respect to society and culture, they hold property to be sacred and any form of coerced activity in the market is immoral and will eventually force the system to degrade to communism. Taxation, they argue, is nothing more than fees citizens pay to have their property protected by the state, something that is sound if kept voluntary. And so the Coalition issued the system of contract fees, voluntary payments to the Coalition state in exchange for legal and physical protection. These fees are, in theory, completely voluntary. If one does not wish to pay their contract fees, they may choose to do so. However, refusal to pay has dire results that motivate most people to pay.
If a Coalitionist, for one reason or another, refuses to pay any contract fees, he is effectively an outlaw. His citizenship is revoked, he has no legal, political and social rights whatsoever and his property considered fair game for any who wish to take it. If one chooses to murder one of these vagrants, the Coalition government would not prosecute; in fact, as far as the government is concerned, the murdered individual never existed. If a vagrant steps on any land owned by the Coalition state, he is a trespasser and will be arrested. As a result, most vagrants desperately try to hide their situation, as if they are found to be one various criminal organizations would swoop down on them.
Contract fees come in many forms, with higher payments granting more and more rights. The "basic" package, one with a monthly fee of about $50, is the most common, and provides basic benefits such as citizenship, legal recognition of property and police and military protection. A "bronze" package, which is $100 a month, includes added benefits such as freedom of speech and worship within private property. Silver packages, about $2000 a month, allows for the ownership of guns and freedom of speech and worship on state property, and the ability to requisition local police for any job that does not involve actively opposing the state. Gold packages, an amazing $50,000 a month, allow almost complete freedom of action within private property, including communication with citizens of communist powers, freedom of drug use, freedom to own and use prostitutes, freedom to own nuclear weaponry, freedom to refuse searches by any police forces, the ability to hire Coalition military for activities not opposing the state, and most importantly the right to vote in planetary elections. In addition to these contract packages, a particularly wealthy businessman can buy stock in the Coalition government (nicknamed the "platinum package"), giving them a vote in the Coalition Congress equal to the percent of stock they own and partial power to impeach the Supreme Director.
The contract fee system dictates the Coalition’s hierarchy. At the very bottom is the outlaw, the individual that for some reason or another does not pay his contract fees. This man is for all intents and purposes nonexistent; anyone and everyone can do what they please with him. They are frequently herded into walled-in ghettos that the state has no presence in. The “basic” package, which most of the Coalition’s working class own, grants basic rights such as citizenship, legal recognition of property and police and military protection. They are also provided basic fernsehers, which monitor the people and provide them with constant propaganda. The working class man lives a hand-to-mouth existence, constantly at the mercy of the state and the corporations they have been working for since childhood. Their individual lives are worth almost nothing and they are frequently conscripted into the military. The bronze package, which most of the Coalition’s middle class owns, provide freedom of speech and worship within private property. Normally working in management or other white-collar jobs, the middle class man is living the true Coalition dream. He is pious, patriotic and content to live in suburban bliss, far from the hellish battlefields and factories. However, like his working class counterpart, he is constantly monitored by the state through the fernsehers and minitabulators he purchased himself, incapable of ever deactivating them. It is his duty to enjoy his lot and be compliant; if the state finds that he is not living the dream, he is to be reeducated. Silver and gold packages are only available to the rich and ultra-rich, and allow their subscribers to function with virtually no restraint. It is from silver and gold subscribers, and the higher ranks of the military, that Coalition officials are appointed from.
Culture and Religion
Socially, the Coalition is more liberal than its neighbors by necessity. Uniformity, it argues, is impossible and does not allow for positive growth in the market. However, activities it deems “un-Biblical” are strictly prohibited. Most cultural control is carried out through propaganda, where the Coalition’s heavy-handed media and strict censorship laws drown out any “subversive” influences. Media that promotes the Coalition’s values are given more outlets to express themselves, while those that do not are restricted, but still allowed to exist (they create niche markets). Promiscuity and drug use is frowned upon in the Coalition, with pornography and drugs being banned, at least among the civilian populace. Active military and veterans are allowed both, in order to encourage people to join the military and to keep them loyal. While breaking social laws are met with strict punishment, the government does not usually devote its resources to it, although entire sections of the Directorate of Security and Order specifically deal with social law. Although the official punishment for violating social law is execution, the modern Coalition prefers to conscript offenders or send them to labor and starvation camps. Political crime, especially affiliation with communism, is sentenced purely by conscription.
Religiously, the Coalition government supports the State Church, founded by remnants of various Christian churches that had travelled with the American government to Columbia. The State Church considers itself the legitimate continuation of the Roman Catholic Church, and has its own pope. All high-ranking clergy are required to be Party members, and the election of pope has to be affirmed by the Coalition Council. The modern Church does not have as much power as it did in the past, and the Directorate of Doctrine and Faith has passed from being a police force as powerful as the DSS to being guards for churches and priests. Modern Coalitionists are not overly outspoken about religion, as everyone’s Christianity is taken for granted. Heresy, while still a crime, is not as actively pursued as in the past, the government simply assumes that heretics will be ostracized by society at large and eventually convert or be driven to misery.
The Coalition promotes miscegenation, emulated to become closer to late Imperial America. The idea of miscegenation is rooted in the idea of an ancient “master race,” whose strengths were divided among different racial groups as man migrated throughout the world. Therefore, it is the duty of the government to restore the master race, conveniently justifying the assimilation of other racial groups to have as “even” a mixture as possible. However, Coalition miscegenation policies are much less strict than America’s, as most believe the theories behind its promotion are outdated and that if there were a “master race,” it has already been achieved by the Coalition, a product of the specialized race quotas of America’s evacuation mission. Despite this, the Coalition still tries to “balance” its master race and the races of other societies and would attempt to mix “impure” populations before fully integrating them in Coalition society, or taking populations of ethnic groups that the main Coalition race is deficient in.
The Coalition’s technology diverged from Earth’s as soon as the ships left the Sol System. Rather than focusing on biotechnology, the Coalition maintained the old pre-war attitude of embracing industrial and atomic technologies. The Coalition is one of the few nations in the galaxy to still use nuclear weaponry in large amounts, and Coalition reactor technology is far more advanced than any other country. However, due to their perpetual fear of electromagnetic pulses, the Coalition is behind in computer technology, and while transistors are popular in the civilian market, the military still uses vacuum tube technology. Despite this, Coalition software is very advanced, and Coalition computers are very powerful, if bulky. Robotics and automation are much more advanced in the Coalition, with all of their aerospace vehicles and an increasing amount of scouting units being automated. However, these artificial intelligences still pale in comparison to human minds, being little more than glorified calculators.
Auszeit technology was developed by the Directorate of State Security during the late 27th century in their attempts to create a faster alternative to the Alkaev engine. This led to the discovery of the Vacuity, a higher dimension of spatial reality that envelops the entire known multiverse.