United Federation of Star Systems
(Formed the LaC)
4001 CE - 20281 CE
The Lactean Confederacy (LaC) (Also called the Trans-Lactean Confederacy from 15,017 CE until 20,281 CE) officially the Senātus Populusques via Lactea (The Senate and People of The Milky Way) is a nation located in the Milky Way Galaxy galaxy and is the precursor state to the Confederacy of Borealis. The nation was a constitutional republic, although, in practice, it was more of a Plutocracy with democratic undertones. The nation was officially built upon equal rights for all individuals, but humans were consistently more prominent in the government, despite only making up sixty eight percent of the population at the greatest.
The name of the nation comes from the Latin name for the Milky Way, "Via Lactea." It was founded in the year 4,001 CE as a way to ensure galactic peace. While starting as a loose coalition of states, slowly began becoming more centralized. By the 8,000 CE's it was one cohesive nation made up of a patchwork of several species. It wasn't long before the default economic system was Capitalism, humans ran a large portion of the nonhumans states in the confederacy, and gaining power in the government had little to do with who was the most popular among the people, but whoever was most popular among the ultra-wealthy. Campaign donations, lobbying, and sometimes even bribery were common issues which plagued the nation throughout most of its history.
The nation fought many wars, but the longest and deadliest war was The War of the Decamillennial Transition. This war was the first time total warfare took place among stellar nations, causing untold casualties among not only military personnel but among civilians as well. While the war was a major factor in the downfall of this civilization, it was not the only factor. Systematic inequality, the extreme power of the wealthy, corruption at most levels, and the horrible economy caused by the war were all other factors.
The nation fell into pieces 20,281 CE and for almost 1,500 standard years it remained fractured. Only in 21,833 CE did the nation come back together, but under a wildly different system as well as a different name, The Confederacy of Borealis.
- 1 Government
- 2 History
Throughout the history of the LaC various governments existed. The nation was always democratic and always had some level of Federal Government, but besides that, most things were fluid.
The original government was a very loose confederation of states. Some species had multiple states for themselves, but most were fully united in their own nation-states. Presiding over these states was a "Lactean Senate" (also called the "Lactean Congress"). This Senate had the power to pass laws, induct new member species/nations, managed territory disputes, and veto laws that caused rights violations in member nations.
The Senate had a standing military made up of tributes from its member nations, but the units and divisions from the states were more loyal to their homelands than to the Senate as a whole. The Senate was almost entirely unable to do its job, with several small scale wars happening in the states and among their own army. To put into perspective how ineffective the Senate was, no corruption existed, since any influence over the Senate would prove to be wasted. The people found themselves just not caring about the Senate, regarding it like it was an international organization rather than as a union.
The relatively few individuals that regularly voted for Senate just ended up electing the same individuals for centuries. In 4,500 CE, over 65% of the Senateman was there when the nation was first founded. The career politicians grew frustrated with their lack of power. This is when they decided to take action by increasing their own power.
Expanded Federal Power
Senate voted to increase their own power with a plan that would slowly erode away the power of the member-states. This plan called for the establishment of several hundred bureaus that would handle interstate crimes, interstate infrastructure, and even several social programs to boost the standing of the Federal Government as a whole with the people. While state officials did not like their power being slightly curtailed, opposing this would have meant hurting their own image.
The Federal Government would keep doing this over several decades, to the point that within one hundred years, it had clawed its way out of being in the background to being forefront in the politics of the nation. There was now a president, Federal Courts, it had the power to directly accept or draft members from state populations, and, most importantly, it had the power to directly expand by itself.
The thousands of original members of the government took full advantage of this new power and expanded federal territory vastly to the point of it rivaling and, later, exceeding that of state territory. An era of general prosperity existed at this time (mid 12,000 CE's). The galaxy, empty of anything of note, lay before them, promising endless expansion and resources.
Governance of such a large nation would have required quadrillions of individuals divided into millions of departments or bureaus, and, at first, it did. The government of even planetary governments was plagued with so many inefficiencies as to seriously impede the functions of the government. The solution was to slowly phase out as many agents as possible and instead use artificial intelligence to run the government.
While this received much pushback, no examples of malevolent artificial intelligences actually existed. Even so, some planets or regions opted to still use physical people rather than AI's. All but the top position of these bureaus were phased out and replaced with computers able to perform their tasks hundreds of times more efficiently. These AI's were only able to operate within an extremely limited scope to prevent any of them from being dangerous. They were still not allowed to directly operate weapons or anything else which could potentially endanger lives.
The typical agency would have high-level officials make decisions and hand them down to an interface (usually an android). This interface would process the request and then offer ways to make it more efficient while still maintaining the same goals. After several rounds of altering the orders to best fit reality, the AI's would get to work executing the order. Most of the time things would go smoothly, but problems that the AI were not allowed to solve were given back to the high-level officials or to third parties the government was working with.
This system would prove to be excellent until the end of the LaC, where it would prove to be the undoing of the federal government.
Bureau of Lactean Sovereignty
The Bureau of Lactean Sovereignty was one of the largest and most well-funded bureaus in the nation. It was intended to maintain the cohesion of the Confederacy as well as maintain federal control over territories not administered by states. This bureau is one of the main reasons the nation was not a Confederation; it was a Federation.
Being head of the organization was one of the most powerful positions one could have in the LaC. Naturally, the position was given to individuals the president owed rather than who was best suited for the job. The position was usually filled by a campaign donor or other powerful individual which the current political party wanted to give a favor to. Obviously, this lead to conflicts of interest with the leader of the bureau, but the Senate had no reason to call them out for this.
The bureau operated under the Department of Defense as the premier member of the intelligence community. It monitored files uploaded to the net, had agents planted on almost every alien planet, and had the power to arrest and detain individuals without due process in the name of "national security." The Agency was primarily a domestic agency, but it still had significant operations in nations bordering the LaC. Most nations that were about to be annexed had a large influx of undercover agents, working around the clock to undermine any resistance movements in the nation.
Department of Transportation
The Department of Transportation is another one of the most important Bureaus in the nation. It was tasked with the creation of wormholes and other travel infrastructure to more easily integrate more isolated areas. This not only served to benefit the people but also served to make it as easy as possible for the military to move about the nation.
Throughout the history of the LaC, the military used actual humans as pilots or soldiers, since the average person never trusted an AI with directly controlling military assets. Later on, the superintelligence called Beatrix would replace the high-level command during the War of the Decamillennial Transition.
At first, the military was a coalition of entirely independent militaries and para-militaries lent to the government by the states, but later, as the federal government gained more control, it would coalesce into one entity. For almost the entirety of the military's existence, it was the largest armed force in or around the Milky Way. It was rarely ever the most powerful force, but in terms of sheer manpower, it remained unmatched.
The nation was formed in 4,001 CE as a means to allow humans and aliens to coexist under one banner, preventing war and increasing trade and flow of ideas. Representatives of Humans, Delvans, Dotsk, Kya, and the Sartins came together on the planet Muspelheim, where they discussed the terms of the unification, discussed articles of the constitution, and discussed the best way to expand. Technology was very primitive at this time; it took months for the representatives to arrive and equally long to communicate. The confederacy was incapable of being anything more than an alliance and a peace treaty.
The representatives agreed that the federal government would start as a council to solve disputes, and slowly grow to have more power as time went on. Their goal was a federal republic that would make war almost impossible.
The Pax Lactea
The Pax Lactea, as it is called by humans, was a period of over 5,000 years in which the Lactean Confederacy was alone in the galaxy. There were no external entities that posed an existential threat to the nation. Most civilizations they came across simply joined the confederacy. Early on it was simply joining the alliance, but later, it was integrating their economies into the main nation, creating infrastructure to allow for increased trade, and allowing themselves to come under the protection of the Lactean Military.
The Period is defined by large growth in the economy as well. A higher population allowed for there to be more consumers as well as more resources. This period saw large amounts of innovation, the incredibly large growth of the LaC, and an increase in the overall wellbeing of most individuals in the galaxy.
It was by no means a perfect time period. There was occasional strife or civil unrest, but these rarely resulted in significant damages or issues. Humans soon grew to become the most numerous species in the galaxy, with one in three sapient individuals being human towards the end of the Pax Lactea.
The Lactean Confederacy soon expanded into nearby dwarf galaxies such as Sculptor and Carina, also getting the Shevins in the Ejeunor Galaxy galaxy. At the peak of the LaC, they controlled large portions of the milky way and five dwarf galaxies. These dwarf galaxies were all closer to the Earth than the other side of the galaxy was to the Earth, meaning that it was the logical step.
End of the Pax Lactea
With the advent of Instant Communication, toxic ideas soon ended this period. What replaced it was a period of division. All of the states were fully integrated by this point, making division not just another dispute to be handled by the Senate, but an insidious force which could end the confederacy as a whole.
At the beginning of the nation, the idea of any species being superior to others was viewed as absurd. Few even contemplated the notion. Those that did believe that their own species (or, in surprisingly common cases, a different species) were intrinsically superior were mostly ignored by the wider public; their ideas simply could not spread.
Instant Communication changed everything. Ideologies that once had no way to spread beyond a handful of radicals were suddenly allowed to spread their ideas for all to see. Even if only a millionth of individuals supported an idea, that was still trillions of individuals. With one trillion radicals spreading their sensation ideologies on the net, more reasonable and less sensational ideologies were drowned out. Politicians bent to these radicals, even trying to appease them. Planets that were mostly homogeneous or isolated were especially susceptible to these ideas.
Much like nations once on Earth, lobbying was allowed. Historians looking back to the period call this the "great flaw of the constitution." The original writers, having never even considered the idea of interstellar corporations, did not consider lobbying to be possible. Thus, the wealthy were automatically more powerful than the average citizen. With a more connected galaxy, the ultra-wealthy were not only able to make more money than ever before possible, they were able to use that money to mold the government into their own image. Regulations were passed to make it harder to create rival corporations, anti-trust laws were blocked, and loopholes were inserted into the tax code.
Paramilitary groups were legalized and allowed the wealthy to exert their will over personal planets. For the first time, individuals were able to own entire systems. Many systems were quickly bought up. Systems on the other side of the galaxy and even several dwarf galaxies were already claimed before they were even confirmed to exist. The galaxy was full, without even being 1 percent colonized.
Humans were not a majority by far, however, at one-third of the population, they were still the most influential of the species in the LaC. Despite making up a third of the population, they made up over sixty percent of politicians and ninety percent of board members.
Democracy became not a manner of how many votes one could get (since districts were ludicrously gerrymandered), but how favorable a politician's policies were to the elite. Protests were common, making local governments pay attention. The federal government, however, yielded little. Often times ignoring or even actively suppressing the protests to keep their campaign donors happy.
Aliens, while having a harder time gaining wealth, were still able to amass wealth. Many even tried to use human tactics against them to counter-lobby bills which were advantageous to the wealthy. Life was not particularly worse for them. The system, while skewed, was not impossible to thrive in.
The Corporatocratic Era
Immediately before the War of the Decamillennial Transition is the era referred to by historians as the Corporocratic Era. This era saw almost total control of the government by the ultra-wealthy, with most high-level positions being filled with them. The second the opportunity for war presented itself, the arms industry pressured politicians to attack. They reasoned that a few deaths among troops would be nothing in light of the profits they would make.
The rich had the power to use the judicial system as a weapon, jailing dissidents that brought up ancient ideas such as "Marxism" or "distributism." This caused aliens to be jailed at a higher rate, only furthering tensions. This control ultimately proved to be the undoing of the nation. Several quintillion deaths proved to push distraught aliens and humans alike over the edge. Causing the split of the Lactean Confederacy.
The Split of the LaC
Main article: Split of the Lactean Confederacy
The Split of the Lactean Confederacy proved to be end of the nation. The aforementioned factors and events all lead to the downfall of the nation. The vast military was occupied on the other side of the galaxy, leaving their home vulnerable to uprisings. When various groups rebelled (for various reasons), the LaC had few assets to respond with, forcing them to hire mercenaries to handle the rebellions. The rebels had the same idea and hired different mercenaries to fight back. Some groups even played both sides.
All at once the economy, artificially inflated by the large production required for the war, collapsed. Fragile supply chains soon collapsed. Large swaths of the galaxy became inaccessible for trade or even communication. Corporations essentially "drafted" some of their employees into their own forces to defend their factory worlds or other assets. However, this proved to be a terrible idea, as the now-armed and disgruntled employees simply stopped taking orders and formed rebellions of their own.
This compounded until there was a civil war in the galaxy, called the Lactean Civil War. The Lactean Government had no choice but to surrender so they could bring their troops home. This sparked outrage, all of those deaths were for nothing. What little patriots remained believed the government grew "soft" and also rebelled. Soldiers were ordered to fire on civilians, causing many to desert. The Senate and President disagreed on how to solve the issues, and both soon rejected the legitimacy of the other and they split, with the Senate operating on Aeros and the president, Hal Drusus, operating on the Earth.
This marks the end of the federal government and the end of the LaC. The nation fractured into almost one million independent polities and would remain fractured for fifteen hundred years before forcefully reunited by the Diunity of Fornax. The hundreds of thousands of pieces and the Diunity united to form the Confederacy of Borealis in 21,833 CE, marking an end to the chaos.