Part 32: Session 13 Part 2*RECORDING BEGINS*
…And I say it is time we addressed this situation! My sub-committee may be defunct for the time being, but my opinions on this matter are shared by billions of my fellow Terrans!
Arright, you've done a good job dancin' around the topic, so what's this all about?
AH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA! Arright, I'm leavin' fer this one. Y'all can call me back in when yer done.
Svensgaard? Is there something we should know about?
You should look up "immigration" in American history sometime, or hell, European history after the 21st century. Personally I couldn't give a brown-nosed flatulent dick about immigration, so I'm gonna go hit on the concessions stand lady instead.
Um, hmm. So, Miriam, disregarding Svensgaard's outburst, you had something you wanted to discuss with us?
As I said, immigration. Quite simply, I believe our citizenship requirements are far too lenient, and we are becoming inundated with non-human rabble! It was bad enough when we were exchanging planets with the Altarians, but it seems like any xenner can just walk into a recruitment station and get all the benefits of Terran citizenship!
Miriam, please, watch your language! You know the recording equipment is on 24/7.
Benefits and drawbacks, may I remind you, Mrs. Godwinson. Citizens of the Terran Alliance are obligated to pay taxes and serve in the planetary armed forces or reserves.
That is bullpockey, Morgan. Not one of our planets has even come under attack, and everyone knows that our taxes are the lowest in the known galaxy.
In any case, Miriam, Alliance citizenship is easy to obtain because it is applied on top of any national or planetary citizenship, both of which are, in fact, harder to obtain. And part of becoming a citizen is renouncing any claim to citizenship with any other colonizing power.
Yes, and I'm sure spies and agent provocateurs from the Drengin are having all sorts of trouble making a pledge like that. Like that wave of saboteurs that struck a few years ago? We still have no idea who sent them! Any alien could be a spy or a terrorist waiting to happen; we can't even trust those so-called "human" Altarians! Who knows what goes on in their temples, what kinds of messages their priests are spreading?
Um, the Altarian worship system has open membership. They're a proselytizing religion. Guests are welcome at their temples.
Well of course they wouldn't say such things in front of others. The peace and goodness they preach to humans is just an obfuscating rhetoric. They would much rather see our planets burn and watch their own species rise to conquer the galaxy!
That's just absurd fear mongering, and I refuse to listen to it. Senators, what are your opinions regarding immigration?
If you ask me, I say, "the more, the merrier." Most of these immigrants are former slaves or come from lower classes that find the high, flat taxes of the other nations to be too burdensome. They are more than willing to abide wages and working conditions most native Terrans wouldn't stand for. It makes it easier than outsourcing to Drengin slave farms or automated Yor workshops, plus we don't have to pay the restrictive tariffs we seem obsessed with using even now.
Not that any corporation I am affiliated with would ever break the law, of course. But, you know, some do, and easy immigration helps us Terrans keep up with our larger rivals.
I am always a supporter of indigenous beings and habitats, and while I am willing to see them move and grow, I cannot support the unchecked migration that our current policies allow. Too many of one culture or another in a new area can wipe out the native beliefs and practices, no matter how well-intentioned the invading culture is. It's already happening in some sectors; Chiron, Epona, and Daikou were already inhabited before our colonists arrived, and they are outnumbered now in some places by 8:1.
If native cultures cannot keep up with modern ideas, they deserve to be forgotten. As I recall, the Western Hemisphere natives of Earth were more than willing to adopt horses and guns eight centuries ago when they were introduced by Easterners. When you think about it, ritual and "magic" are just precursors to the scientific method, and older traditions deserve to be discarded for newer, more efficient means.
Yes, of course we should adopt the most modern of technology and theories. Tell me, Prokhor, how many papers have you published attempting to refute the Altarian Prophecy Theory?
And how many have you written?
Not every aspect of a culture is about efficiency.
If my esteemed senators are finished, perhaps I could provide my humble opinion. It is my view that immigration should be as open as possible. It is far easier and preferable to see the sophonts of the galaxy come to understand the superiority of our ways of their own free will. A war of conquest is far more taxing, both for the aggressors and for the defenders.
Hold on. Did you just say that you want us to conquer the galaxy?
Of course not. Not until that is the last available option.
The Universal Translator must have erred. I of course meant "unless."
My thoughts on immigration are simple. If you are willing to fight and die for your home, whether native or adopted, you have earned your franchise. Since that's part of being a Terran citizen, I have no objections.
And so that leaves me. To me, the meaning of "human" and "Terran" have diverged in these last few years of galactic exploration. "Human," as Mr. Zakharov once observed, is simply a species, Homo sapiens sapiens. Originally from the planet Earth, a satellite of Sol, and through the power of an omnipotent future, also from the planet Altaria, satellite of Altaris. "Terran," however, is something different. To be Terran is to abide by a belief that all sophonts are equal in the eyes of the government, a belief that the best form of government is rule by the majority tempered with respect for the minority.
You do remember that this senate body is full of appointees?
We were appointed by democratic governments and publicly held corporations. It's not as freely elected as I would like, but we still represent the will of the people better than a hereditary emperor or lord ever could. But I think I've made my point; we all have. Miriam, if you still have something to say, it will have to wait until later. Good day, fellow senators.
Hilarious. So Morgan, what's the news?
The Yor sent a freighter to our planets recently. It seems even xenocidal robots see the benefits of trade. I would like to remind my fellow senators that we still have two trade lanes of our own yet to exploit, as well.
Our financial situation is more than secure. Did I say before that we were making over 200 billion credits per week? That is only because I enjoy surprising people with good news. You can see here that we are doing far better than that.
Double the awesome, then. Lal, you said things were gettin' interestin'.
You may say that. First, though, our espionage has proceeded well enough, reaching "High" levels in both the Drengin and Yor nations. Additional spies have been planted in the Torian system.
Several minor wars have flared up, including one where the Altarians cited trade disputes regarding the LentzLandians.
"Trade disputes" hardly compare with our reasons for wanting justice. I had Senator Lal settle their dispute so that the Altarians wouldn't interfere.
The Altarians have also joined the Torians war against the Drengin. We are still keeping neutral in that conflict.
The lower house voted once again, and the Universalists won once again.
My War party did particularly well in this round, thanks to the successful Korathi War. Our slogan this season was "Force Works."
Terrans' penchant for conflict never ceases to depress me.
The Iconians came to us again with a warning about the Torians. It seems all their neighbors cannot help but worry about them.
I took the opportunity to make a couple deals with them. It was just before the semester end, so we received several technologies at that time.
Lastly, the United Planets met, and President Svensgaard finally decided to send me as the Terran representative. I sensibly voted for the strongest penalty for warmongering, but the Altarians and Iconians sided with the Torians, earning a majority for 5%.
Our relations with the Yor and Drengin seem to be stagnating at the moment. I hope that, with time and effort, we can bring them around to the galactic community.
Zak, what's all that junk he got us?
"Xeno Persuasion" is a series of codified arguments one can make to neutral traders and space settlers, and it should improve our Influence by 10%. The Harpoon II is the latest in missile technology, and Plasma happens to be the newest and most powerful beam weapon yet discovered. Cities of Learning are an extension of the Torians' university research system, but they are still inferior to our own commercialized Research Academies. The Industrial Sector is simply the ultimate form of factory development; keep in mind that "sectors" in this case does not mean the sector of a city, but an entire region of the planet that gets filled with semi-automated factories. Sensors Mark II is simply a smaller version of the regular sensor set.
Terraforming was finished this quarter, giving us as much access as we will ever get to our planets. It also gave me the idea of putting terraforming equipment on satellites; I've got people on New Avalon working on the project even now.
I also finished out Fleet Warp Bubble technology, which was finished in just a week. At the moment, research funds are being sent to a project codenamed "Majesty." It should be finished in another 3 weeks. Further recommendations are in your handout.
What's the starbase report, Yang?
Of particular note is that the mining starbase destroyed by the Korath was replaced in short order following their surrender. Further pirates were removed quickly by our remaining forces, allowing our starbase to remain unperturbed.
Any other news? Santiago, you got something?
Yes, the cleanup of Korathi forces is almost certainly complete, from what we can scan. In particular, the Yor fighter that attacked our trade lane was dealt with just outside the Agena system. It appeared to be severely damaged when we found it, indicating that the Torians engaged and lost to the ship before it passed through our systems.
One other thing. Forces are currently in place to resume Operation Moustache Shears, should the senate wish. Since the first plan had to be scrapped thanks to the Korathi War, you will need to propose the operation once again. However, especially since the LentzLandian fleet happens to be down-left of their planet thanks to the earlier Altarian aggression, the planet is lightly defended. What you see in this image should be more than enough if we act swiftly.
Heh. Well, it was a slow few months fer the Nautilus.
Not much, is it?
Now you heard all we got ta report, so get goin'!
Infrastructure Development Commission
Unless given a commission, either by the senate or a committee chairperson, idle starports will produce constructors.
Automatic ship designs shall focus on beam weapon technology.
Colonial Support Initiative
Senator Godwinson may not use her prerogative to name new colonies.
Xeno Relations Board
Energy credits and technologies are authorized for any and all foreign technology trades; priority is given to military technologies so purchased. Humanity is prohibited from selling or trading away colonization technologies. The Terrans shall maintain a strictly neutral stance in the Torian-Drengin War.
Colonial Development Commission
The starting order for all colonial buildings will be: build a factory, a market center, a factory, a market center, one research center, one starport, and one farm (once possible, only up to 13b) in that order, using special tiles when appropriate. All unused development tiles shall be utilized at Senator Skye's discretion. This law reaffirms that any senatorial action will supersede any committee chairperson's unilateral decision.
Trade and Loan Commission
The XR Freighter shall be upgraded when applicable.
Infrastructure Development Commission
All starbases, upon receiving an upgrade, shall immediately build Battle Stations I should they not already possess it.