Future Imperfect

After reading and listening to so much Greco-Roman history, I thought of writing about the modern day in the same terms popular historians use in relation to Ancient Greece and Rome.

La Usona Imperio:

The Americans were one of the last great empires of the Terran era. In just 400 years they managed to rise from a coalition of rebellious British colonies along the eastern North American coast to a global contender for dominance.

 

According to their popular mythology the “Founding Fathers” were incensed by Britain’s taxation of the colonies without allowing them representation in the legislature, but the facts of this story are debated hotly by historians. The general consensus is that the likes of George Washington, Ben Franklin, and “Uncle” Sam Adams were likely members of the local aristocracy taking advantage of Britain’s financial problems at the time to seize power themselves.

 

With aid from Britain’s rival nations the thirteen coastal colonies were able to secede and form a representative democratic-oligarchic federation they named “The United States of America” (USA). The individual colonies, now calling themselves “states”, largely governed themselves by the same exclusionary democratic and/or aristocratic principles while sending popularly elected representatives and state-appointed (later popularly elected) senators to the newly established capital at Washington D.C. To act as chief executive the Founding Fathers established the position of President elected by a complicated process that evolved with the USA over the centuries. Presidents served for terms of four years, with the opportunity for re-election at least once. To check the power of the two legislative houses and future Presidents, the President was able to appoint life-term judges to a Supreme Court that judged whether laws fit with the “Constitution”, a document that the Founding Fathers wrote to ensure the continuance of the power structure they instated, even as it was amended by later generations.

 

Almost immediately after seceding from the British Empire the USA began to extend its own fledgling empire westward, conquering and displacing the native nations with whom the British had signed treaties limiting their expansion. New states were founded as the new empire’s territory expanded and their population swelled with immigrants taking advantage of their liberal migration policy, many states allowing citizenship to any free man from an array of European countries and later expanding the criteria to include additional countries and women. Upon crossing the trans-continental Misipi river the USA encroached upon the American territories of other European-descended countries and seized them by a combination of warfare and purchase, reaching the western ocean.

 

By this point the states had largely consolidated into three power blocks, the urbanized northeastern states, the agricultural fiefdoms of the southeast, and the western frontier. Tensions between the north and south had been growing for decades over the southern states’ use of slaves from Africa, which an increasing number of northerners had come to see as morally repugnant while the southern economy had become dependent on them. When the western territories, many populated partially by escaped slaves, were admitted as non-slaver states the southeast attempted to secede from the empire. They failed, and the south was economically devastated as punishment.

 

Upon securing their continental holdings the USA cast its gaze overseas. Trade with other nations had gone on from the beginning, but with the industrial revolution in full swing the joint-stock corporations that dominated trade began to purchase resources and factories across borders. In a series of wars in Central and South America the USA demonstrated its’ willingness to use its military to open trade opportunities for its’ corporations. While they rarely conquered these countries outright their military interventions often rendered them into corporate vassals, their industries serving to grow the American economy. The USA also extended its reach across the western ocean, colonizing a number of islands for their strategic value and coming to the shores of Asia.

 

In 170 BX the first World War began, the USA managed to stay out of the conflict until the last year, but they were able to demonstrate that they were a match for the other global powers in the conflict and seized credit for the victory of the Allied powers over the Axis. After the bloodiest war in human history to that point the empire retreated to its home territories, causing the economy to crash a decade later. When World War II commenced circa 150 BX America was again reluctant to join in, only entering when the Axis bombarded their oceanic state.

 

During WWII the USA developed nuclear fission technology and employed fission explosives to force the last of the Axis nations to surrender after burning two of their cities. The other major nations of the Allies obtained the same technology soon after, including the Russian empire. Russia had been considered an ally-of-convenience by the other Allied powers until the Axis was destroyed on account of their embracing the economic philosophy of Communism, as opposed to the Capitalism of the other Allies. The expansive territory of Russia’s empire combined with their oppositional philosophy worried the USA, but with both empires possessing weapons capable of rendering the other uninhabitable they couldn’t risk an open war. Therefore they spent the next century expanding their influence among the less-powerful nations.

 

As the international game went on America’s political parties oscillated between favoring and opposing the use of military force to support useful factions in the disputed nations. Twenty years in the two empires made a brief foray into space, with the USA landing the first human on Terra’s moon in 120 BX. After this prestigious landing, however, the Terran empires restricted their activities to near-Terra orbit for seventy years, focusing on radio relay satellites.

 

As the final pre-Exodus century crept on it became clear that Terra’s resources were running out, and a few corporations picked up where the empires hosting them had left off. In 40 BX the first parahumans were produced by a corporation primarily staffed and owned by Americans for the purpose of colonizing Sol’s Asteroid Belt.

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