The United Technocracies of Man is a totalitarian oligarch state and one of the galaxy's superpowers. It is considered as the weakest superpower out of the three superpowers in the Milky Way.
When the revolts in Europe’s interstellar colonies ended in communist victory, many so-called “enemies of the people” were persecuted by the revived Soviet government. Many, ironically, fled to the charred colonies of the pre-Collapse Soviet Union, which had been systematically destroyed by the last remnants of the Imperial American navy. While these groups had many unresolved differences, most agreed that continued infighting would only allow the communists to eventually overwhelm them. They decided instead to live in peace in separate settlements, leaving one another alone, while promising to aid one another in the event of an outside attack.
That outside attack finally came in 2462, when the Conseil of Workers' Systems tried to rebuild its reputation after their attempt to incite a revolution in the Coalition failed. They declared the disparate states to be illegal and occupying territory the Conseil inherited from the Soviets. At the time, the integrity of the alliance between the powers was being called into question, as their growth led to territorial disputes. Warlords and pirates dominated the stars, just as they had before the communist revolution. Already, limited warfare was occurring between traditional autocratic regimes and ideological regimes. One group, the technocrats, was already waging a guerrilla war against Alliance peacekeepers. Because of this strife, the Conseil expected a quick victory, knocking down the systems quickly. However, much to the Conseil’s dismay, the Allied systems put aside their differences and united against their ancient enemy.
Despite the Allies’ solidarity against the communist invasion, their militaries were ill-prepared to face off against an enemy the size of the Conseil. Hit-and-run tactics on the ground did not work well against orbital bombardment. System after system fell to the Conseil, but not without a heavy price. Most Conseil “victories” were Pyrrhic: after taking enormous casualties on the ground, the Conseil would be forced to bombard worlds into submission, destroying the precious real estate they were fighting for. Still, the Allies knew that they would eventually be eradicated by the Conseil if outside help did not arrive.
Almost as soon as war broke out, the Allies desperately asked for Coalition intervention. The Coalition, just having fought a bloody war against the Conseil, was of two minds on the issue. On the one hand, it despises the Conseil and would be more than happy to sabotage its plans. This plan was supported by the more ideological members of the Coalition government. On the other, as the more pragmatic traditionalists pointed out, the Coalition might not be able to afford yet another war against the Conseil, and its imperial ambitions looked elsewhere. Faced with this, the Coalition instead sent “volunteer units” to aid the allies and sold anti-spacecraft weaponry at discount prices. The Conseil were furious, but it knew that attacking the Coalition would surely mean defeat. When a Conseil vessel fired upon and destroyed a Coalition merchant ship, the Coalition threatened the Conseil with a declaration of war unless it pulled back to its pre-war borders. The Conseil refused, leading the Coalition to launch an invasion into Conseil-occupied systems. Faced with an enemy of nearly equal power to itself, the Conseil soon accepted the Coalition demand.
After the war, the territorial issues that had threatened to split the Allies apart reemerged. Technocratic groups, who were once insignificant, now had the upper hand. Having settled worlds far from the Conseil Systems, they were the least affected by the devastation of the war. The technocrats, seen by Coalition ideologues as Darwinist allies against Marxism, were allowed to occupy territory as the Coalition retreated back into its borders. They were allowed to keep massive stocks of both Coalition and captured Conseil weaponry. Lastly, the technocrats presented themselves as the “solution” to communism, an antithesis to the despised invader. Many in the former Soviet systems rallied around the technocrats as a result, but they were still inferior in numbers to the other Alliance members. Consequently, they waged a defensive war against the Alliance, willing to lose territory to the Alliance if it means losing less men. Large Alliance regiments were captured or surrendered, some even joining the technocrats. After five years of war, the Allies were in a desperate position, as a war largely seen as their fault was not defeating the technocrats. Eventually, the Alliance was squashed, and the United Technocracies of Man was formed.
Although initially a Coalition ally, the United Technocracies eventually began to split off from their benefactor. Although both agreed on the inferiority and eventual defeat of communism, they disagreed on the finer points of government’s role in society and with respect to morality. The Coalition was staunchly traditionalist, and as the theocratic elements in the Coalition grew it began to become more and more apparent. The Technocracies disagreed with this trend, believing that the purpose of the state is to preserve itself, and that the moral business of its citizens should not be the state’s concern as it gives them incentive to revolt. Meanwhile, the Coalition decried the increasingly strict economic controls the Technocracies imposed. Eventually, the Coalition and the Technocracies began to more openly criticize one another’s puppet states, and by the 2530s each other. Tensions would be relieved somewhat during the Cerafi War, when the Technocracies sent aid to its allies, but would later flare up again when various Neu Stuttgart states decided to ally with both states.
A low point in Coalition-Technocracy relations is the Laguna Skirmish. The Laguna system, colonized by Imperial America, was a member of the Alliance and hosted many fleeing Alliance leaders after the war. The Technocracies claimed that the Laguna system belonged to it, and when the Coalition officially annexed the system in 2605 the Technocracies protested and demonstrated this by sending a battlegroup to the system. The Coalition responded by sending its own battlegroup and military escorts were sent planetside to Laguna II to guard the annexation ceremony. The ceremony was interrupted by anti-annexationists several buildings, an action which the Coalition believe was instigated by the Technocracies. The Coalition Navy commander was ordered by the Coalition governor of the system to open fire on the Technocracies’ battlegroup, resulting in a short battle which ended with the technocrats retreating. The political fallout of the skirmish was immense, with the United Technocracies threatening to enter the Conseil camp out of spite. However, tensions declined as the Coalition and Technocracies began talks about their disputes.
To this day, the dispute over Laguna is still ongoing, but with the breakout of the Galactic War it has been put on the back burner. The Technocracies are officially neutral in the war, and while they were close to entering on the Coalition side, but changed their minds when the battle of Neu Stuttgart IV began, which saw the eradication of several Technocracies allies by both Coalition and Conseil troops.
Society and Ideology
Presenting itself as an alternative to National Conservatism and Dijonist Communism, the totalitarian, hierarchical system of Oligarchal Technocracy focuses on the utter submission of the citizen to the “stereotype” of their designated caste and the obliteration of the individual. Blending the hierarchy of the right with the collectivism of the left, Oligarchal Technocracy views the existence of the concept of the individual as the cause of conflict, as the individual seeks to pursue his own good at the expense of the community. The Great War, the Collapse and every other ill were all blamed on the aspirations and ambitions of individuals. Therefore, if conflict is to be eliminated, the concept of the individual must be destroyed. It is only then when the people can work together for the collective good.
The philosophical roots of Oligarchal Technocracy in the history of the Soviet Union and the post-Soviet colonies: central planners discovered that state control of the economy was easier if massive portions of the population were designated general tasks within the economy. The uneducated were fit to work in factories and collective farms, while educated Communist Party officials manage the work. This caste apparatus was already very mature, if completely unofficial, within the old Soviet system and the post-Collapse Soviets implemented and legitimized it. After the demise of the Soviets and the subsequent chaos that engulfed the systems that would create the United Technocracies, the technocrats blamed individualism. To them, the losses from the intersystem wars and the Conseil invasion were attributed to not every “part in the social clock” playing its part. To solve this problem, the technocrats declared that the state must take an even more active role in the conditioning of the people, so the people know subconsciously what part they must play.
Central to the idea of Oligarchal Technocracy is the obliteration of the self, or more accurately the concept of individual thought. Individual thought leads to conflict within the state, which is unacceptable as the state is the pinnacle organizer and defender of society. Each individual is a part of the state; how is a system supposed to function if its parts do not coordinate or worse yet are at odds? The individual, therefore, is eliminated by the state through every means necessary: education, cultural control, or in the worst case scenario brute force. Oligarchal Technocracy, like the other two dominant ideologies in the galaxy, is also convinced of its invincibility and supremacy. The symbol of the United Technocracies, the Cycle, is symbolic of this idea. Every action performed within the United Technocracies only creates other actions, as symbolized by the arrows going around, all of which serve the state, as symbolized by the arrows pointing toward the center. The system feeds on itself and can never be defeated.
The modern Technocracy political apparatus, with its relation to its citizens, focuses on two things: promoting compliance with the state and destroying individuality through caste conformity. A person’s entire education is dedicated to fulfilling the role of their caste; assignment to a caste is theoretically based on genetic predisposition, which is essentially a justification to make caste roles hereditary. It is only the very upper classes, the descendants of the Technocracy’s founders and the true leaders of the United Technocracies, that are given any sort of education outside of their role, and even then they are groomed from birth to fulfill it. The offices of the Technocracy government are led by the descendants of their previous occupiers, who have been trained from birth to be experts in their field. All castes are taught to be proud of their caste but that all castes are important; the great machine of society needs all of its parts to work together in harmony. The only important distinction between individuals is caste; no other trait, be it racial or sexual, is of any importance. Refusal to adhere to one’s caste is punished by death.
The castes of the United Technocracies are named after parts of the clock: the Pendulum, Frame and Cog. The Pendulum caste, the elite of Technocracy society, rules the United Technocracies, directing its parts. Their primary education is in the matters of politics and economy, the mastery of which will help them manage the state better. Although they are taught to abandon individualism like everyone else, the Pendulums are more aware of the system and for the most part only pay lip service to Oligarchal Technocracy. Pendulums are far from united, either: through the manipulation of the Frame and Cog, or one another, they all individually seek to become the supreme leader of the United Technocracies. The current leader is Generalissimo Windsor, a former Frame commander who managed to blackmail himself into the Pendulum class. The Frame is the caste under which the military, police and security apparatuses operate. The Frame, as its name suggests, is responsible for keeping the state together and defending it from external threats. The Frame is the closest thing the Technocracy has to a “middle” class; it upper members are constantly jockeying for power and becoming members of the Pendulum caste. Finally, the Cog caste is responsible for managing the economy and society of the United Technocracies. The Cog caste itself is roughly divided into two sections: the Overseers and the Producers. Propaganda, economic planning and most other bureaucratic management falls under the purviews of the Overseers, while actual laborers are considered Producers. Producers are the most numerous caste, forced by the state to work in massive factories or collective farms, their lives only worth the labor they can provide.
While the United Technocracies' caste system is well-established, the upper ranks of the Pendulum class are fluid and de facto leadership over the entire United Technocracies is transferred among various high-ranking officials. However, within Technocracy propaganda and even among the Pendulums, there is one figure that remains supreme: the First Citizen.
The origin of the First Citizen is unknown; even Technocracy propaganda is vague on the origins of what is perhaps the most important figure within that nation's political cult. All that is established is that the First Citizen was the founder and first member of the Technocratic Union, the predecessor to the Party which runs the entirety of the United Technocracies' political apparatus. He is also said to have led the young United Technocracies to victory against the invading Conseil, making him the Technocracies' first head of state. Apart from what Technocracy propaganda provides, nothing is known; rumors that the First Citizen was a woman, an alien or a fabrication by the Ministry of Truth are common throughout the galaxy, although even acknowledging the existence of such rumors is punishable by death within the United Technocracies itself.
A political cult has formed around the First Citizen, whose visage adorns every room and streetcorner within the United Technocracies' vast interstellar empire. While he is not considered to be divine, unlike the Conseil Systems' General Secretaries, near-divine powers are attributed to the First Citizen. Omniscience is the First Citizen's greatest and most feared attribute, leading to the saying "The First Citizen Sees All." This statement has been adopted by the Ministry of Love and Truth in their propaganda, referring to the extensive surveillance they carry out. Unofficial cults, which do revere the First Citizen as divine, are allowed but closely watched, in case they turn against the United Technocracies for not executing the First Citizen's will.
To further confuse matters, some powerful men have claimed to be the First Citizen himself, or have taken up his mantle. While the historical First Citizen would be nearly three centuries old by the 2700s, those claiming to be the First Citizen usually explain that they are his mind, uploaded to a complex tabulator system which was recently reactivated, and exclusively communicate electronically. While this ruse rarely works on the very top of the Pendulum caste, the pervasiveness of the Technocracies' propaganda machine allows individuals with enough political capital within the Ministry of Truth to fool even members of the Technocracies' intelligence services.