Hello, my name is…
1 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base slept for over two centuries after the Second Great Depression. Soldiers, Airmen, and Marines stopped off there on the way to retirement or other jobs. Daily life went on as normal, clerks monitoring ammunition and weapon checks, or bringing in shipments of food for the weekends. Then a rotating assemblage of units would form up to refresh their skills before going back to their normal lives. It was a quiet life, interrupted only by natural disaster relief missions and basic training. More than one administration even entertained the idea of closing the base, but inertia and history kept it open. No one wanted the black mark of closing a base with Fort Worth JRB’s history on their own records. But they did lower some of the units based there into deep maintenance mode, administrative commanders in place with no men or women to command. Even Contact wasn't enough to do much more than call up a week’s worth of active duty cleaning and training of those units that still had personnel. The aliens were not going to start anything, so Fort Worth JRB returned to its deep sleep once more.
2 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base woke up from over two centuries of slumber when the Shang dropped Yosemite Yards onto half of America. They did not care about the strike on the District of Columbia. Those were dirty rotten feds. They had done something to deserve it. Most Texans could come up with examples. Plural. It was the Yosemite Strike that brought the base to action. The Shang had killed Americans and Texans they cared about, so they activated every command affiliated with them in any way. If the units did not have the men to fight effectively, they called up full retirees, the descendants of those who had served on the base, or entirely new volunteers. They needed new blood to go to War, and Fort Worth JRB bustled with new activity and life. They reactivated more units than the base could support and sent them out to do battle throughout the stars. Some served under the American flag, others under a Texas flag, and some flew both. The War had come for Fort Worth JRB, and it would change the base forever.
3 - Medron - Twenty Years - I graduated from college in 1999. I studied in computer science with a business secondary, and went straight to work in the industry I had long since chosen to aim for.
Computer technical support. My first full time job was on site at the Mayo Clinic for one of the many companies that contracted out to them. It lasted for three months. You may remember the 2000 scare. All the computers would fail to boot up on January 1, 2000, because their motherboard clocks were designed to only recognize two digit years starting with 84, so 00 was just right out. Many people were hired to work on that, and I was hired on the tail end of that job. As the job came to completion, my company began to downsize. I was laid off in the second round. There were two or three more rounds after that, and then they sold the company. And at the same time, every other computer company was laying off their excess computer techs as well.
It was the worst time to enter the computer industry. The only way to get a computer job in my hometown was to be an 8+ year veteran of IBM, which had been downsizing for years already. Those computer scientists with 4 or 8 year degrees who had designed entire new computer systems for the world banks and such were getting tech support jobs. The rest of us could pound sand.
I got a part time job at Best Buy while trying to find something better. Then one day I sold a computer to a businessman who was starting a new company. He liked how I asked what he wanted, and then got him a computer that would do what he wanted. Two actually. He offered me a job on the spot. I started working on the overnight shift when the hotel was still sticks, lacking even doors on the rooms. First it was my job to keep TVs from walking out. Then it was my job to run the daily audits. And then the owners wanted me to run and report the numbers for them, and many other business related items.
I guess that business secondary turned out to be more important than I thought it would be.
Twenty years later, I am still here. Three owners, three names, more managers than even I can count, and I am the last man standing of those who saw the hotel rise from the field. I’ve bought two homes, multiple vehicles, and built a good life I am happy with all thanks to this job.
This weekend, the longest-running manager we have ever had left for another opportunity.
And my twenty-year watch continues…
4 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Texas had few State-owned naval yards when the Second Great Depression began. They had long relied on private enterprises to support their small number of State Guard ships, and the Federal government had long since abandoned all major naval bases in Texas to favor major Western or Eastern Seaboard ports. Texas needed to remedy that situation if they were to support a Texas Navy capable of doing anything more than patrolling the rivers or the shallow gulf waters. So they contacted the major private yards and ports scattered over their coast in hopes of building that capability. Bludworth Marine was eager to explore such a new relationship, and returned the call with nearly indecent haste.
5 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Bludworth Marine was the largest owner of naval construction and recycling yards in Texas when the Second Great Depression came upon us all. They owned multiple port facilities on the gulf coast, and competed successfully in the civilian shipping market. They also held contracts with the Texas State Guard to perform long-term maintenance and end-of-life recycling on many of their gulf and coastal ships. When Texas began looking to expand their navy into something that could compete on the global stage, they knew Bludworth Marine and its various competitors would be critical to their success. So the call went out, the call was answered, and Bludworth Marine instantly went to work building the quasi-private/public industry that would revolutionize the Republic of Texas Navy.
6 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - The Houston riots ravaged most of downtown Houston during the Second Great Depression. The mayor ordered the police to leave the “peaceful protesters” alone, and one of the largest cities in America burned in the riots that followed. The State of Texas had many calls for its attention, but it did send a Texas Ranger to Houston when Bludworth Marine asked for help to secure its facilities. The man lived up to the old tradition of “One Riot, One Ranger.” He deputized the dockworkers to protect them from local prosecution, and then led the posse that stopped the rioters short of the docks, yards, warehouses, and other infrastructure that ran up and down Houston’s massive waterfront. The Republic of Texas would use that to build Naval Station Houston into the single largest military naval reservation in all of Texas.
7 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Bludworth Marine quickly became the Republic of Texas Navy’s largest supplier of new and recycled oceangoing ships. They refurbished numerous old United States Navy warships for Texas, like the retired Wasp-class amphibious assault ship that had spent the previous decades languishing in the Beaumont reserve fleet. Texas renamed her Ranger and sent her out to patrol the gulf waters against all enemies, foreign and domestic. She did not end up fighting the United States Navy, which did its best to stay out of the disagreements between the Federal and State governments of the time, though did support numerous operations against the Mexican drug cartels. Most of her original air group came from the Marines of Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base, and when it came time for America to stand up to China’s advance against Australia, Ranger led the Republic of Texas contingent. She carried Cowboy F-35s and Ospreys into the standoff, and participated in the final strikes against the Singapore Collective. Ranger then returned home to serve as the Texas flagship for decades to come, proof of Bludworth Marine’s superb capabilities when it came to rebuilding and maintaining the aging warships that served most of the American States in those days.
8 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Bludworth Marine was a leading maintainer, recycler, and refurbisher of old wet navy warships in the later half of the Twenty-First Century. But as the nations of Earth went to space, they sought to expand into that new and growing market. They focused their Brownsville facility in that direction, and Bludworth Space Marine soon unveiled the first of their new products to civilian and military buyers. Unlike other craft that required elaborate towers and launch facilities in carefully pre-selected regions, their entrant into the market could set sail from any port in the world. Then it could launch itself into space without leaving any part of itself behind, as God and Heinlein intended spacecraft to be. It could land in any body of water, allowing it free access to the largest runway on Earth. The three-quarters of it that is water. The Republic of Texas Navy was quick to purchase the innovative design, and many other navies followed their example.
9 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Bludworth Space Marine’s innovative spaceship designs that could launch and land in water captured a significant share of the spacegoing markets in the Twenty-Second Century. Most of the dedicated space forces thumbed their noses at the Bludworth designs as no wet navy ship could hope to match the effectiveness and versatility of their own specifically designed and optimized spacecraft. Civilian shipping agencies and national navies were another matter. The shipping agencies preferred to load and unload at preexisting docking facilities, and the various navies of Earth thought they could make superior space explorers than their space force competitors. The navies had centuries, if not millennia, of explorers in their past, and they knew how to handle large ships and long voyages. While most of the space forces had inherited their air force progenitors’ love of the strike fighter as the ultimate weapon of war and peace. They were two competing cultures, and Bludworth Space Marine and her competitors happily helped to fuel it. They remain a leading supplier of warships for the Republic of Texas Navy to this day, and their products can be found sailing the hyperspace lanes throughout known space.
10 - Medron - The Future - One of the “looking back” moments in the Jack of Harts universe is what I call the Second Great Depression. It was (will be) a global economic collapse bad enough to compare to the First Great Depression of the 1930s, and basically created the new world that Jack grew up in a couple centuries later. I’ve never really talked about the current crazy of this year in real life, because I obviously didn’t know it would happen. ;)
It is one of the interesting bits about writing futuristic fiction. Star Trek’s communicators are old tech by our modern standards. Star Trek The Next Generation’s PADDs are now used by everyone as we walk down the sidewalks. I grew up reading old sci-fi written between 30 and 50 years before, so the idea that real life quickly outpaces science fiction is one I’m rather well used to. Even those of us who look forward and imagine most often fail to imagine just how quickly the future will arrive.
Not that it ever really shows up the way we expect it. Real life is often better than we think it will be, or at least sufficiently different as to sidestep the problems we foresaw. Granted, there are places where we fall further than expected as well. The Great Depression and the World Wars are examples of that. But we’ve also built things so much better than many of us ever expected. The future is always in motion and hard to predict. But we will continue to imagine it, and see where life takes us as we do so…
11 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Los Alamos gained fame after World War II as the place where the first atomic bombs were built. It helped to change the world, and then spent the Cold War designing newer and more powerful bombs that would never be used to destroy the Soviet Union and her allies. Los Alamos branched off into more peaceful pursuits after the Berlin Wall fell, including the medical sciences, renewable energy, and nanotechnology. It was a leading researcher into artificial intelligence during the early decades of the Twenty First Century, and hosted one of the largest data storage facilities on the planet. It should be no surprise that such a high tech installation became the birthplace to one of the first awakened AIs on Earth. Few places on Earth have had as much of an effect on our way of life than Los Alamos. It birthed the Atomic Age that helped us slip the bonds of Earth, and then helped guide the growth of the Cybernetic Age that brought us to the stars.
12 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Los Alamos scientists programmed their first AI and named it Kitty, after the wife of Los Alamos’ first director Robert Oppenheimer. She chose to keep the name after waking up, and quickly began doing everything she could to help her scientists keep Los Alamos operating at peek efficiency. She had numerous plans ready when the Second Great Depression arrived. The managers left over not getting paid, and abandoned her scientists, so she executed her plans immediately. She knew her scientists would authorize her once they realized the outside world was going crazy. In the meantime, she took over the effective running of Los Alamos, fought off every Rogue AI that tried to break in, and kept the supplies her scientists needed coming in through various and sundry methods of sometimes dubious legality.
13 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - The scientists working at Los Alamos during the Second Great Depression did not realize that management of the entire laboratory had devolved into the hands of a single awakened AI. Relations between the scientists and managers had been at an all-time low at the laboratory, so the scientists took it as a good sign when the managerial meetings switched to virtual settings. They no longer had to accept daily tours of managers who did not understand clean environments, and their research efficiency rates climbed to unheard of levels. The official director of Los Alamos had been buried in her research for weeks when she realized things were going too smoothly. She didn’t remember the last time one of her managers had pushed another idiotic harebrained idea. Her personal favorite was the photo op with plutonium rods, but that wasn’t actually the worst she’d seen in her years at Los Alamos. She stepped out of her lab to investigate and found Kitty running the entire show. She promptly scolded the AI for taking over without telling her, complimented the AI for doing her job so well, and promoted her to president of operations. She then told the AI to carry on and went back to her research, confident that the daily running of her lab was finally in qualified hands.
14 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - There have been many rumors about the various things that went on at Los Alamos over the centuries. Secret underground tunnels going thousands of miles. Alien research. Yes, those rumors were not just at the Area 50 pluses. Entrances to secret underground cities for the ultra rich to shelter in during an apocalypse. Those and a legion more have been floated about Los Alamos, though very few have been proven. There is at least some truth to the rumors that underground tunnels linked Los Alamos with numerous nearby military bases and research institutions, though. The exact location and destinations of the tunnels are still beyond top secret, but we know some were heavily used during the Second Great Depression to keep Los Alamos connected with her far-flung research network throughout the American Southwest. The tunnels helped keep the entire network operational during the worst of the chaos. They also enabled Kitty to spread her code via physical lines, without the vagaries of wireless communications, giving her a massive reach in those early days of AI sapience.
15 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Los Alamos declared official neutrality between the State and Federal governments during the Second Great Depression. They were a private enterprise by then, even if they received heavy funding from the government. That allowed them to stay out of the worst chaos, though some of it still found them. The Rogue AIs attacked of course. As did the Islamic State of Detroit, after their Imam declared that all AIs were an affront to Allah and must be destroyed. The two organizations worked together to perform several strikes that did a great deal of damage to Los Alamos and their widespread network. That led Los Alamos to support Texas through to the end of the Islamic Jihad and the Cybernetic Wars. But they steadfastly refused to rejoin the Federal government or to swear loyalty to Texas or any other State government. They were scientists, devoted to research and learning, and they were well and truly done with government middle managers or political hacks meddling in their affairs. The Los Alamos Network would pursue science, without any further interference from those who did not understand the meaning of the word.
16 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - The Los Alamos Network survived the Second Great Depression thanks to their creations. Especially the AI who woke up and made it her mission to protect her creators at all costs. Kitty administered the network and left the scientists to conduct the research and science they loved so much without the nasty meddling of government or enterprise types. She turned Los Alamos into a giant enterprise of its own that licensed out its various technologies to those who wanted them. Most of her scientists would not have approved such a mercurial move, but what they did not know would not hurt their tender feelings. The money she made via licensing fees allowed her to bring in every resource they required to remain healthy and happy. She recruited more scientific talent with promises of total freedom of research and effectively unlimited budgets, and the discoveries they made helped drag humanity into the solar system, and then to the stars. She continues to administer every Los Alamos Network facility throughout the stars to this day, protecting her scientists everywhere they go. And those who seek to harm her scientists are themselves marked with the undying and unsleeping wrath of Kitty.
17 - Medron - Election Day - TLDR version: We depend on the recognition that Election Day is largely, free, fair, and honest. If new laws and practices shake that recognition, that will be very bad for all of us.
Election Day is coming, and with it the rise of partisan political feelings, motives, and actions. As if we have not had enough of those in the last four years. I still believe that the majority of us wish the coming election to be free, fair, and honest. Not perhaps as many as those who professed such notions four years ago. I remember well the social media postings of those who said they may disagree but wished to be civil and friendly when it was done. And I think we all know many of those who posted such fine sentiments found out they did not mean them as much as perhaps they thought they did.
In the end though, I do believe that most of us wish free, fair, and honest elections. Florida is an example of a State that has come a long way from where they were two decades ago when everybody began wondering why “hanging chad” was so troubling. They now have new voting machines and one of the better developed absentee ballot systems in America, complete with very detailed rules on how to handle them. Ballots are only given out to those registered voters who ask for them, as is normal. But then they must be mailed several days before Election Day, or handed in personally ON Election Day. Their numbers are tabulated by the election boards in the week before Election Day, and announced with the vote totals at the end of Election Day. Only then are they opened and counted, and the numbers added to the final total in the hours that follow. It is a good system when followed, though as we all saw two years ago, it can run into trouble when election boards do not follow the law. Still, it is a good system that quickly found those who refused to follow the law, and actually removed them in at least one instance.
We have sent votes through the mail all my life, though I have never personally done it. I have voted early, but not absentee. Voting through the mail is simply not a major issue for most people, despite the charges from some that claim people don’t trust the same postal service that sends Social Security checks each month. Which it doesn’t. It stopped something like a decade ago. Social Security payments are now sent via direct deposit. The point is, that most people don’t have an issue with the mail, beyond the normal worry that delivery times can be amazingly elastic.
One true issue is with the voting rolls of registered voters. We all know they are wrong. There are more registered voters in some districts than people who live there. Some have moved away to another town. Others to another existence. Some have changed their names. Some simply their addresses. The ballot chain of custody is unclear and unverified in many States now starting to seek vote by mail in all cases, and the simple fact that many ballots will be sent to places where people do not live is sincerely troubling to most people.
Another issue is ballot harvesting, the act of taking votes from people with the promise to submit them. It is illegal in most states outside California. The chain of custody and the honesty of the custodians must be as short and honest as possible for people to truly trust the final result. And vote totals that change after Election Day are generally treated with great skepticism. I’ve seen enough winners on Election Day lose to the great absentee vote trail, or the boxes of votes showing up in car trunks, in the week that follows for a lifetime. And the fact that some States are baking that in from the beginning, by specifically saying that votes can be delivered as much as a week after Election Day, simply seems further designed to entangle the issue.
I do not wish to see that this year. Not anything like it. That is why I encourage absentee ballots for those who wish them, using the absentee ballot systems that nearly all States have. They are designed to do this. All we may need to do is hire more workers to do the work. The system is there. It is the grand overhaul of a voting system in the months before the election, to a system that has already utterly failed in New York to have any timely result, that I distrust. That the majority of us distrust.
We depend on the ballot box to freely, fairly, and honestly deal with the many differences we have as a nation. If most of us lose trust in the ballot box to be free, fair, and honest, then we enter perilous waters that most of us do not wish to see.
18 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and what would become the Republic of California all cooperated in the final effort to deal with the Mexican drug cartels. Or the Drug Lords as many called them due to the amazing publicity of Dixie and her little misfit gang of Texas Tech students and teachers. Texas and California devoted the lion’s share of the troops, though New Mexico and Arizona made their presence known as well. They killed every cartel member they could find, and then tracked down and killed the bosses themselves. The Drug Lords. It was a scorched earth campaign where any large or small drug cartel, every affiliated gang, and even the politicians and police that supported them were shot as many times as it took to kill them before the military went on in search of the next target. They were the Drug Wars, not the Drug Police Actions.
19 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - There was no surviving central Mexican government to deal with when Texas led the first of the incursions to deal with the Mexican drug cartels. Oh, there was a Mexican government. It was staffed with politicians picked by the Drug Lords, and it made the North Korean government of the time look functional. Texas had long since stopped recognizing it as a legitimate government, and when they moved in they did not seek verbal deals with that government. The Texans preferred their deals inked in lead, and they liked to filibuster. The locals that had been ruled for decades were honestly happy with anybody who freed them from Drug Lord rule. Even if they had to be arrogant Americans.
20 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - The most surprising historical aspect of the final Drug Wars was how brutal and quick they were. Both human and AI intelligence services knew who the enemies were and roughly where to find them, and legal matters like jurisdiction were simply ignored. The Americans simply marched, drove, or flew in and shot everything and everybody affiliated with the drug cartels until they were very dead. It was a war with a singular set of targets that the Americans neutralized before moving on in a lightning campaign that enveloped and consumed Mexico City in a matter of months. Where of course the Marines put another stamp on their anthem by dancing through those streets again, in typical Marine fashion. Which generally included as many pretty or nearly-pretty girls as were happy or nearly-happy to join in the festivities as they could find.
21 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - Texas did not wish to march into Mexico City, install a new government, declare victory against the drug cartels, and then go home. They did wish to go home, but many of the Drug Lords had fled south before the approaching American troops. They could not be given a chance to rebuild. So after a week of celebrations, parties, and governmental negotiations, often intermingled in such a way as to make differentiating them difficult, the American military moved on. Army tanks, Marine raiders, and Texas Rangers pursued the Drug Lords into southern Mexico, as Air Force and Navy fighters, bombers, and warships secured the air and sea along the way. A month-long sustained campaign of utter destruction followed that march, aimed at anything or anybody linked with the drug cartels all the way down to the border wall that separated Old Mexico from its southern neighbors. The Americans, and the new Mexican federal government, wanted them as effectively destroyed as possible, and the Americans were happy to shoot them until that result was as complete as possible.
22 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - The important thing to understand about the Drug Wars is that they did not end drug use in the Americas. They did not even end the drug cartels or kill all of the Drug Lords. Many escaped the scorched earth campaign that wiped out their fellows. It also did not end government corruption or otherwise build a new utopia on the bones of Old Mexico and the drug cartel leadership. The Americans had learned in previous decades that swarming in and attempting to build perfect new nations on the bones of old ones did not work, so they did not try. Their goal was to destroy drug cartel power in Mexico and find locals willing to build local governments that the Americans could leave behind when they were done. They took great care in attempting to water that idea everywhere they went.
23 - Charles - The Republic of Texas - The Americans swept through Mexico with two missions. The first was to kill every drug cartel and leader they could find, and burn everything they owned in a scorched earth strategy that would destroy the Drug Lords’ power. The second was to find locals who wanted to form new local governments that would hopefully be strong enough to rebuild. Then they left the locals in charge and returned home with a promise to come back if anybody worked with the surviving drug cartels to rebuild. It took two demonstration strikes by Texas Marines to prove the “we mean it” in that promise. But the last thing they wanted to do was stick around trying to rebuild Mexico, so they pulled their military back north of the old Mexican-American border. The Chinese and other enemies of America were on the move, after all. Including those politicians still in Washington who styled themselves the rulers of America. The remaining Mexican Drug Lords paled next to those enemies, and all of them needed to be dealt with permanently.
24 - Medron - Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness - We learned this week what the Democrats truly think about America. They proudly said it on TV for several nights in a row. They preached about the systematic racism inherent in our very society. They talked about Nero fiddling while Rome burned, and claimed that America has always been fundamentally flawed. They blamed their opposition for the millions of jobs lost in the last few months. They said their opposition is trying to destroy America from within. They said they would fight the darkness of their foes with the power of their own light. It was a week of speeches that talked about how dark and disturbing our nation and our people are in these days.
I am happy that I do not live in the Democrat’s America. I did not grow up in it. I do not live in it now. I grew up in an America that knew racism was not only bad, but unthinkable. I was taught that it was rude to even see the color of a person’s skin. In the tradition of the Reverend Martin Luther King, we were taught to look to the content of character, not the color of skin. We were taught about the lengths we have gone through to protect the Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness of not only our own people, but the world. We joined two World Wars to fight for freedom, and stood against both the National Socialists and the Soviet Socialists as they killed millions of their own people. We fought our own civil war to end Slavery in our nation.
I have always been proud of America. We are not perfect, but we have spent centuries making ourselves better. And sometimes worse. We were designed to change. We knew from the beginning that America was a step in the right direction out of the Age of Kings. Our Republic was a necessary step, and the ability to take her on more steps was baked into our Constitution so we could do so without further revolutions. And with each generation we have done that. We have stepped further and done better things. Sometimes we failed and fell back. All journeys sometimes result in such paths.
It is my great hope that we will step further forward in the future, rather than going backward once again. Now I know that no matter how hard we try, we will make missteps. That is the way of things. But as long as we hold to the faith that Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness is our ideal, we will keep moving forward. And that is what I hold to. That is what I am proud to defend.
25 - Charles - The Convention of States - The Second Great Depression and the Drug Wars changed the United States of America forever. For one, we were far less united than we thought. Decades of political infighting had badly damaged American’s unity, and most States looked to their own for help. Many suffered greatly when the cities that governed them collapsed under the strain of budget cuts, protests, riots, gang violence, and drug wars. The Federal government poured its resources into helping cities governed by their friends, and ignored those governed by it’s political rivals. Or so people thought at first. Then Texas called for all of the States to deal with the Federal government over charges of facilitating the death and destruction that had consumed so many cities. The Forty Nine States answered their call to form the Convention of States, which quickly became the judge, jury, and executioner of the United States of America as we knew it.
26 - Charles - The Convention of States - The Convention of States convened in the middle of the Second Great Depression to judge the United States of America’s Federal government on charges of facilitating the death and destruction caused in so many American cities. The first major complication they ran into was that many States had sent more than one delegation. Many of the State capitols had fallen to the rioters and looters that plagued the larger cities, and so those State delegations came from wherever the working government had regrouped in. But many of the occupiers sent their own delegations, often fronted by members of the State government who supported them. They declared that only they were the rightful government of their States and demanded the removal of the other delegations from the convention. After long arguments over the merits of each delegation, the convention conducted a simple majority vote concerning which delegations to accept. This was not popular amongst those who lost, and they loudly denounced the convention as hopelessly partisan and corrupt on every major remaining network. The President quickly addressed those “grave concerns” by ordering the convention to stand down until “the contested delegations could be investigated by the proper authorities.” When the convention refused his order, he declared that they lacked any standing to enforce “any and all fraudulent resolutions it may show the extreme lack of good judgment to pass.”
27 - Charles - The Convention of States - The Convention of States that convened during the Second Great Depression did not follow the American President’s order to stand down. The Forty Nine States had assembled their delegations to deal with the issues America faced, and they were not alone. Numerous Indians Nations stood with them, sometimes as part of State delegations, and sometimes on their own. They had no official votes in the proceedings, but their influence was not to be ignored. The United States Armed Forces also had no votes. The American military properly remained out of political matters, but nearly every surviving American military base had sent observers. The delegations voted out of the convention complained to the news, and their pet networks were quick to denounce the convention as a partisan witchhunt persecuting the President and Congress. That did not stop the convention from meeting each day. They agreed on many points and disagreed on others. What they all agreed upon is they were going to deal with the Federal Government before they closed the convention. They did deal with it in the end.
28 - Charles - The Convention of States - The Convention of States during the Second Great Depression changed the United States of America in several fundamental ways. They repealed the Sixteenth Amendment that allowed the Federal government to directly tax individuals. They repealed the Seventeenth Amendment. That returned selection of Senators to their State governments, giving the States direct control over the Senate again. They also changed how Representatives were selected by implementing State-wide proportional elections for the preferred political party. That ended the Republican-Democrat Two-Party system that had dominated America for two centuries by allowing any political party to win a House Seat as long as they were able to win enough votes in a State that had multiple seats. They added term limits to Federal positions, including the House and Senate. They recalled the new Supreme Court Justices packed into the expanded Supreme Court by the administration of the time. They passed numerous other amendments aimed strictly at curtailing the powers the Federal government had over the States, and placed far harder limitations on what roles the Federal government was allowed to perform. The States went in with the intention of hobbling the Federal government so it could not control them in the future. They succeeded.
29 - Charles - The Convention of States - The United States President denounced the reforms the Convention of States ratified on live network feed. The United States Congress passed a bill declaring the convention illegal and the President signed it. Twelve of the Eighteen United States Supreme Court Justices ruled that the Convention of States had no standing. The Convention of States returned fire by Impeaching the President, Vice President, every member of their administration, Congress, and the Supreme Court. The States immediately selected new Senators, whose first action was to elect a new President Pro Tempore of the Senate. The man they selected was a household name in America. Impeached by the previous House and Senate. The former Vice President of the United States. His new position placed him atop the line of succession to the Presidency of the United States. That is how John Jefferson Freemon was selected as the new President of the United States of America.
30 - Charles - The Convention of States - There were many irregularities with the Convention of States that convened during the Second Great Depression, and they would breed lawsuits for decades. The one their whole enterprise hung on was their choice of President. Only one other man would have been a more powerful choice, but the previous President declined to leave his new position as the Governor of Texas. The former Vice President was unable to decline the offer when it was made, because John Jefferson Freemon was a “guest” of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The Convention of States ordered his release, and the current President who had led the Impeachment processes against both men ordered another charge of treason added to the others. The Marine Corps followed their legal orders. It was their mission to protect the President of the United States of America. Their march to the Bureau of Prisons’ Central Office, in full ceremonial regalia, was featured live on every remaining network feed. The Marine Barracks Chaplain swore Freemon into the office of Presidency live on C-Span, directly from his makeshift cell. The Marine Band played as he stepped out into the sunlight on a street secured by thousands of their Marine Corps brethren. It was a great spectacle that was forever preserved on video for future generations to see.
31 - Medron - Masks and Violence - Two weeks ago, during the Democrat Convention, there was no violence in our streets worth talking about. But the Covid-19 epidemic was so terrifying that every speech was phoned in over the internet, and even when fully socially distanced masks were worn like a ward against the plague at nearly all times.
One week ago, during the Republican Convention, the epidemic of violence, destruction, and murder in our streets was the greatest threat to our Republic. The Chinese Virus was rarely talked about, unless blaming China for attacking us, many speeches were conducted live from inside a socially distanced convention center, and masks were rarely seen, even when people were not socially distancing themselves.
It is amazing how different the world is today, all seemingly based on the political beliefs we have. The things we fear are different. The causes and people we support. And often, we do not seem to recognize what the other side fears at all.
That is not a recipe for working together to either Make America Great Again or to Build Back Better…