Medieval America Mark III

Discussion in 'Alternate History Books and Media' started by Flashman, Jun 21, 2017.

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  1. Richard Drummond Well-Known Member

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    We don't need to actually. America entered a gradual decline so maybe the government just decided to avoid a nuclear disaster and emptied out the reactors dumping the nuclear rods somewhere.
     
  2. HonestAbe1809 Abraham Lincoln 2020

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    Now I've got the idea of a pre-regression city depopulated by a meltdown being left to deteriorate because the superstitious folk of the new Medieval America think that it's cursed.
     
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  3. KeeCoyote Well-Known Member

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    It is in a way
     
  4. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    So since it's Halloween any guesses to how it's celebrated in Medieval America?

    That and what do you guys think of a noble house who are basically expies of the Addams family with a little bit of the Heterodyne's from Girl Genius thrown in? Being one of the oldest households in Medieval America having originally been seated in New England before being driven out East and infamous for their many bloody wars, love of the Macabre and Occult.
     
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  5. Kerguelen Prime Specimen

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    It probably goes back to being that one night a year where everyone puts on costumes to participate in an orgy of binging and violence. Of course, the church tries to canonise it into a religious holiday and it ends up becoming some sort of American Saturnalia.
     
  6. frustrated progressive Insert Witticism Here

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    I love this concept and all the work that's gone into it, but may I point out what seem to be '(not that important in the grand scheme of things) plausibility holes in the initial premise?
     
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  7. Born in the USSA Well-Known Member

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    That's the fun, this is just extrapolating and filling out the original short-lived website
     
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  8. frustrated progressive Insert Witticism Here

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    Cool. I'll start articulating my thoughts.
     
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  9. Born in the USSA Well-Known Member

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    Nice! Just remember that Flashman retains veto power (and we're doing this in regional order). Zen eco-Buddhist jedi and Scientologist empires are in but a pastafarian raiding culture got shot down for example.
     
  10. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    I actually talked about it with a friend of mine on discord and he came up with this.
    Basically we figured that by a thousand years later industrial and technological civilization would of returned, looking somewhere around the first half of the 20th but with a lack of cheap fossil fuels.

    With the Americans Dark Ages having simple gun powder weapons and some other simple innovations that don't take much industry.
     
  11. frustrated progressive Insert Witticism Here

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    Random musings I feel the need to write for some reason, even though this universe runs on Rule of Cool:

    The agriculture-herding boundary is a couple hundred miles too far east. Even without the aquifers of recent centuries, rainfall should be enough on its own to sustain at least moderately intensive agriculture, a sedentary society supplemented by animal husbandry, into the eastern thirds of Nebraska and the Dakotas, half of Kansas, and so on. Especially since the rain line has been shifting east recently, probably due to climate change, and with that out of the way it should stabilize somewhere between the 99th and 100th meridians west. Even if mounted archers can outfight farming societies in marginal areas, eventually sheer numbers will tell. So the cowboys should be restricted into a fairly narrow band between thereabouts and the Rockies, with Iowa safe from their raids in all but the worst times (once in a lifetime, say), and the Mississippi impassable unless they have all, not just one particularly powerful band, been united under a reincarnation of Temujin.

    Kuluradu should not exist. Even if all the Muslims in the entire decaying federal prison system were at Florence, and even if they all staged one coordinated riot during a distracting crisis, they'd eventually get outshot by local forces, who wouldn't take kindly to a surely despised foe going on the rampage. Prisoners with stolen or makeshift weapons should be no match for posses, national guards, and sheriff's departments, even in favorable circumstances.

    The USA should still be in D.C. In an age where the government would be hyper-sensitive to the symbols of legitimacy, going to Baltimore would only weaken their claims. Giving the entire city to the Non-Denom Church would be like the Byzantine emperors decamping to Nicomedia and leaving Constantinople to the Patriarch. I get what White was trying to do with the Rome analogy, but that happened when the city split off from the Byzantines in the 8th century because the empire couldn't force them back into line or protect them. With the US government still controlling the area all that'd happen is that the Chief Justice who proposed such an idea would wake up dead.

    California would not have adopted the Desereti alphabet. California is a larger, richer realm, not the type that would normally just adopt a whole new writing system for ease of trade. Especially since the Desertis are rivals and infidels ("suppressives"?) In fact, I'd expect the relationship to realistically go the other way, with the Desereti alphabet being restricted to ceremonial purposes and most writing even within Deseret happening in some kind of demotic hybrid or Deseret-influenced Latin, but I'll let that slide..

    These all strained my suspension of disbelief.

    Lesser implausibilities that are a bit weird but not too egregious:

    New Age New Mexico should probably be New Age-flavored Catholicism instead.
    Scientologist California. There's roughly 20,000 of them in the state in 2019. The demographics almost certainly just aren't there, except maybe for Scientology-influenced syncretism if they get lucky.
    Although it was done cleverly, I feel that the effective end of race in the South (everywhere else is too monochrome to sustain separate racial identities, as White notes) is still unlikely. If race is in the rest of America's DNA, in the South it's a ritual scar.
    On a similar note: the de jure acceptance of debt bondage by the Supreme Court. It would be too open for the north, which would still semi-hypocritically pride itself on greater adherence to American values of equality of opportunity. I expect that there'd just be a gag rule on challenging it, but the north wouldn't have to accept it, much less have it.

    Thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2019
  12. Umbric Man Umbric Manned

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    This part fascinates me in the good way. Would aquifiers for land right up to the Rockies - which I assume is what is going on in today's OTL industrialized agriculture - also be possible in a medieval society? Would a neo-medieval, non-industrial world see the agricultural line shift back westward in any meaningful way? Would herding/ranching be the more profitable land usage west of the 100th meridian even if aquifiers and sedentary agriculture from them were possible?

    I utterly agree with this wholesale - Washington will only become more symbolic and I'm sure it'll revive in the Neo-Medieval Age as a commercial city that may even see a medieval version of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal built in order to add immensely to its wealth and productivity. Albeit as it's in the very original canon that inspired these threads, I'm willing to let it slide in this case.
     
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  13. Merried Seinor Comic What Does My Name Even Mean?

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    IIRC, in one of the past threads, it was stated that if plausibility were applied then whatever Medieval period exists (if at all) would swiftly give way to a Dieselpunk setting. Hence why "How the Regression Happened" is never addressed.

    Whole thing is more of a thought experiment than anything else on "What if America had a Medieval period". Plus, I'm laughing my ass off at the thought of a Southern knight removing his helmet and probably looking like Patrick Mahomes.
     
  14. tehskyman Engineer for the money

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    That or Steph Curry or Klay Thompson or Danny Green or Blake Griffin or any number of light-skinned pro-athletes.
    There is agriculture beyond the settled states. Refer to this http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/medvam/images/pop-west.gif

    Well the government is in DC, just symbolically. The senate still sits in DC. It's just that as a maritime republic, it's better to be located on the sea.

    Rule of cool dude. We have trended a bit more towards realism here but excluding key aspects of the original, we're less extending the original and more writing our own spinoff.

    Also I disagree on the racial aspect in the south. Again, race/ethnicity was not nearly as important in the pre-modern era as it is now or even in other parts of the world. Distinct Races tended to blend together where they interacted. As can be seen in the mestizo population in Latin America, Central Asia, Anatolia and Hungary.
     
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  15. frustrated progressive Insert Witticism Here

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    Thanks for the compliment.
    That's kinda beyond even my expectations. At this rate, the Oglalla Aquifer will be significantly damaged before the regression cuts back on our meddling, and that doesn't regenerate on a scale of centuries. So there's definitely some land where current farming is dependent entirely on groundwater that just can't turn a surplus as anything other than pasture in less lucky conditions (heck, there are some places that wouldn't be fit for any kind of food production at all, but that's more of a Californian problem for these purposes). That's my conception of the land (with allowances for microclimates and, once you get to the beginnings of the Rockies, elevations) from the 100th west. Going east from there, there's marginal land that could be made to farm, but it would be more productive to just graze animals. Then you eventually get to the zone of first light then ever more intensive agriculture, until you reach, say, Fargo or Sioux Falls, (or the 98th meridian if you'd prefer that metric), from whence it'd be basically indistinguishable from our Midwest. There's a related zone in fragmented political conditions where lands are simply too vulnerable to Cowboy incursions for farming, but once to go far east enough that farmers get serious population advantages, they should be able to generally defend themselves.

    Okay, this canal idea is way cooler than anything I envisioned. As I said, I was not seriously expecting changes to be made to the canon, but if this gets enough support it sounds very promising.
     
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  16. frustrated progressive Insert Witticism Here

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    Yeah, I like the race thing too, and it wasn't something that I have that much trouble accepting-let me put it this way: the things I put under "a bit weird but not too egregious" seemed odd after I read them and thought about it for a while. The things I mention first as having "strained my suspension of disbelief" literally stopped me in my reading and made me do a double-take.
     
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  17. Umbric Man Umbric Manned

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    Thank you in turn. So the 98th meridian eastward is definitely farmland, and it was traditionally the 100th meridian eastward that was considered wet and farmable - and may be so again as industrialization and overpopulation become things of the past. And meanwhile grazing/herding was definitely what one did west of the 100th meridian.

    Washington DC was selected by George Washington as capital partly as a potential perfect blend of north, south, and westward cross-travel - what with a potential C-and-O canal linking the Ohio River (and entire MS watershed) to Chesapeake Bay would be huge, as well it's almost in the middle of the thirteen colonies. Jefferson and his party killed off a lot of would-be industrial development like that in their yeomanry obsession and of course New York won the canal travel with the Erie. Still. Washington has a ton of potential as a port, especially for pre-industrial-sized ships and boats, if the C-and-O or some equivalent is built. And even if it's nominally inland like Philadelphia, like that city it too can be a true seaport handling blue-water sailing ships (up to ship-of-the-line size) just fine with its old navy yard proving that. Not as amazing a deep port as Baltimore, but it's obvious not hard at all to see the cities each handling a specialty within the bay.
     
  18. frustrated progressive Insert Witticism Here

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    First bit addressed above-tho I do think that even if "race" survives, the most patently absurd aspects of the current conceptions thereof (the one-drop rule) would probably fade out.

    That's a good observation, and to be perfectly honest, I had forgotten about that map when I first wrote my post (though I do remember seeing it when I first read the website). Still, I think my broader point still stands-that chart itself seems to underestimate framing presence, and even what it shows would raise doubts as to whether the farming populations depicted would not be better able to resist Cowboy depredations than they have been in White's canon.

    The normal dynamics of a maritime republic would indeed weight the balance in favor of Baltimore, but I think political considerations would outweigh this, and D.C's position isn't that bad in and of itself. Also, given how spread out the US it, there might be significant factions from places outside of Baltimore's orbit, for whom Baltimore being the capital would jeopardize their own position. Finally, our very own @Umbric Man has pointed out a very good solution to this issue.

    I think we're at cross-purposes here. I'm not trying to turn this into a place of plausibility pedantry. I accept the fundamental conceits that make this universe great. I wouldn't even necessarily want my "objections" to be addressed. I'm just pointing out some things that made me personally doubtful, and that could be fixed while not changing too much of the lore or deeply altering the broader atmosphere.

    How do you break up quotes like that?
     
  19. SgtRL-3 Well-Known Member

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  20. HonestAbe1809 Abraham Lincoln 2020

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    By manually copying and pasting the code surrounding the quote at the beginning and end of each segment of the quote.
     
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