Politics in Fenspace

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This page is written or contains material written in the metafictional (or OOC) voice. This material may contain spoilers, Easter Eggs, or other data not generally known in the world of Fenspace. The reader is duly warned. -The Mgt.

These aren't faction political parties or societies or even really hard statements of belief. This is all pretty soft, broad and vague. That said, there are four major positions in fandom's political climate as of SOS-Con:

1) Apathists: "The 'Danelaw doesn't care about what we're doing out here, and we're too busy cracking rocks, herding comets and building domes to really care about the 'Danelaw. Things are just fine the way they are, so why freak out?"

1a) Anarchists: "The 'Danelaw doesn't care about what we're doing out here, we don't want the 'Danelaw to care about what we're doing out here, and we don't want the Factions to care, either. Just leave us be."

2) Nationalists: "Fenspace is a frontier and like all frontiers it's a bit wild and woolly. Sooner or later though, civilization catches up with the frontier. Mundane laws and government will establish themselves, and that's not a bad thing - we all grew up under them and we came out okay, right? Naturally, the 'Danelaw countries what we came from at first get dibs, since they're the nations we know and love best. And as the sphere of civilization expands, the frontier will also expand, to the outer system and then to other star systems. That's the way we spread civilization."

2a) Ex-Pats: "Just because our old homes in the 'Danelaw gave up on us because we got biomodded or otherwise got too close to 'wavium doesn't mean we've given up on our old homes in the 'Danelaw. We're out here because for a while we had no place else to go - it might be safe to head back home, or it might not, but we've grown comfortable among the 'natives'. But that doesn't mean we've forgotten our true homes, back on Earth. Maybe we'll go back someday. Maybe..."

3) Globalists: "Earth is the biggest, most powerful economic engine in the solar system. If we're going to not just survive, but thrive, we need to latch onto that engine and become an important part of it. All of our big projects depend on money from Earth, and if the money stops they stop. It's not even a question of politics, it's a question of keeping the Earth's engine turning Fenspace's wheel."

4) Separatists: "The solar system has a gigantic resource base, and history has shown us what happens to cultures that have resources but no industry that come into contact with cultures with industry but no resources. We must become self-sufficient, through breeding quirk-free wavetech, building our own hardtech industry, or preferably both. If we can keep it together for a little while, we'll be strong enough to stand up for ourselves. And why give up this great situation? Why give up our country just so we can live in someone else's? Seriously why get involved in the 'Danelaw's squabbles?"

4a) Boskonians: "All of the solar system's resources are just waiting to be used, and we're strong enough to say how they should be used. And those resources include people who aren't strong enough to be us."

Naturally this isn't the sum total of political thought in Fenspace, but it's a start - relatively broad positions that cover some of the more important issues faced in space colonization. There's some overlap, nationalists and globalists being tricky to tell apart from a distance, same with apathists and separatists. And there's room for variance within each position: a globalist could be anything from a L. Neil Smith libertarian to a hardcore communist, but they agree that trade with Earth is key to survival.

The status quo as of SOS-Con favors the apathist stance. Aside from a few almost half-hearted forays into cislunar space the 'Danelaw powers have turned their backs on the solar system at large. Without an overriding concern to draw people to the more committed stances, nationalists, globalists & separatists are reduced to yelling at each other at Conventions or on the SMOF/BNF political boards. The aftermath of SOS-Con and the Boskone War will shift this around some, but unless the conflict starts drawing attention from the 'Danelaw space powers the balance of power will remain in the apathists' court for a while yet. Which doesn't stop more than a few Fen from laying groundwork for what they confidently expect to happen five or ten years down the line and trying to recruit Big-Name Fen to their agendas...