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The False Independence - Principles for a New Lazarus

Talk about regional management and politics, raider/defender gameplay, and other game-related matters.
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The Lazarene Gazette
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The False Independence - Principles for a New Lazarus

Postby The Lazarene Gazette » Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:16 am

Image

PRESENTS


✯ ✯ ✯
THE FALSE INDEPENDENCE
✯ ✯ ✯


"Can a nation be free if it oppresses other nations? It cannot" - Vladimir Lenin.


Image

INTRODUCTION

You have been told a lie. You have been told a lie for all of your existence and you have believed it. It is the vilest illusion ever to have permeated through our corridors of power.

They said an independent region is neither “invader” nor “defender”.

They said an independent region allies with both invaders and defenders.

They said an independent region is open to both invaders and defenders.

They said an independent region does not protest the invasion of non-allies.

And if you did all of these things, they said you would be free – that you would be “independent”. But you’re not free. Accepting conditions upon conditions on your behavior does not make you free –it limits you.

Almost every Game-Created region has sat in this box -- this social construct they call “independence”. They promised you a plateau of freedom, but all you have received in return is a prison of your own design. By all falling for the same lie and obeying these same conditions, each of these Game-Created regions has been robbed of their individuality and their identity. Their wishful revisionism leads them to believe that they have always shared these ideas, but they have not.

This false independence has kept our regions indistinctive, inactive and, perhaps most concerning of all, it has kept our regions dependent on foreign aid.

✯ ✯ ✯


WHO ARE “THEY”?

Who has brought forth this manifest lie? The bourgeoisie. The elites whose ruling party wished to maintain a power structure favorable to them.

The wealth of the bourgeoisie is not in the form of traditional capital, but of political capital.

Defenderdom was once rife with these elites; The Alliance Defense Network was plump with politicians thirsty for power and privilege. But, having no loyalty to the cause, they abandoned defenderdom and left it to die in favor of “independence” – their greatest invention.

Independence was an ideology that could tie together the masses – it would promise freedom and good governance but instead perpetuate the power structure that they wanted perpetuated.

For the bourgeoisie in the invader spheres of NationStates, Independence also fit as a perfect ideology to advance their own power and (similar) interests – they too would soon adopt this package of ideas.

But what of the Proletariat? How has “Independence” helped them? The answer is simple: it has not.

Invasions are a projection of power against the proletariat – those with less means of political production in NationStates than the bourgeoisie who authorize and try to justify these acts of violence. Yet those with even the littlest of means are told to adore a system of violence and exploitation against them – embrace independence!

✯ ✯ ✯


THE FOLLIES OF INDEPENDENCE

Indeed, Independence is at best a political ideology that aims to perpetuate an oppressive superstructure against the proletariat for the advancement of the bourgeoisie, the projection of their power and the pride of the fat, pestilent broker-regions such as The New Inquisition, Europeia and The Black Hawks which soak themselves in glory for every region, a tenth of their own size, they have occupied and beleaguered.

The ideology promises to be in the interests of all Game-Created Regions, but it fails in almost every avenue to better these regions.

First, Game-Created Regions, once independent, are indistinctive. Every Game-Created Regions becomes a boiler-plate structure devoid of Regional Identity, when they agree to think a certain way, have the same allies and enemies and say or not say the same propositions.

Second, Game-Created Regions, once independent, are inactive. All populists in a democratic setting will prefer the proposal amenable to the most people, but does political support translate into participation? No. Independent armies are largely inactive. They suffer from lacking a moral direction to motivate one, while in general the lack of identity has a downturn effect of the entire region’s activity. Lazarus for years has been the most inactive Game-Created Region -- it is not a coincidence that it has also been the most “independent”.

Third, Game-Created Regions, once independent, are militarily quarantined. With the lack of a commitment to a moral direction, independent armies will likely be avoided by other powers when considering allies for their more important and interesting of cross-organizational missions – not when there is a risk of leaks and disloyalty. Bearing this in mind, it follows that independent armies of Game-Created Regions are more or less invited only to do the grunt work of Invader and Defender powers.

Fourth, Game-Created Regions, once independent, are distracted. The external focus of Game-Created Regions is not on the oppression of the proletariat, but in the areas of external activity where an independent army, limited in scope, can operate. This means to say that Game-Created Regions are lead to believe that the focus of nearly all of their attention should be on marginalized groups: Nazis, Ad-Spammers, Fascists, Forum Destroyers and Macedon, among others. Furthermore, the popular hatred of these groups is used to justify exploitative relationships with foreign userite powers under the pretense of military cooperation (e.g., Sovereign Confederation, War on GGR).

Fifth, Game-Created Regions, once independent, are destructive. It is a grand lie of Independence to claim that with the rejection of both Invaderism and Defenderism comes a toleration and openness of both Invaders and Defenders. This is a false narrative. When the independent region inevitably attacks the proletariat, the defender member is torn between his loyalties to his or her region and his or her duties to defend the proletariat – these members become outcasts for their disloyalty, while those who perpetrate and support this aggression against the proletariat are given promotions and greater political support in the independent region.

Lastly, Game-Created Regions, once independent, are dependent on further userite military aid. Without a strong military to defend its own borders, Game-Created Regions are dependent on assistance from userite powers. This creates a vile Military-Political Complex, wherein members of the bourgeoisie from the invader sphere perpetrate attacks against Game-Created Regions (whose defences have been weakened from following the ideology of these same individuals), meanwhile the bourgeoisie as whole in the form of Europeia, Equilism and others reap the opportunity to gain politically from supporting these Game-Created Regions in the time of their need.

✯ ✯ ✯


CONCLUSION

For these reasons, “Independence”, this farce of a military ideology, should be abandoned. Game-Created Regions have been systemically restrained and held in captivity under the spread and diffusion of Independence’s core beliefs.

The independent region is an inactive region, structurally forced to be dependent on the aid of others in a world that (subsequently) does not believe in unconditional aid. These independent regions are culturally and politically indistinguishable from one another which encourages mass disenchantment. Likewise, Game-Created Regions as independent powers become periphery actors who are often excluded from important cross-organizational military operations. Furthermore, the independent region is distracted with petty fights against the scapegoats and bogeymen of NationStates, instead of focusing on the greater political-military-social issues that are too plain and manifest to continue to ignore.

Independence is an ideology used by the bourgeoisie to help protect their own power and privilege, in addition to justifying their use of force against the proletariat. Those citizens who stand up for the protection of the proletariat, defenders, are discredited and ostracized as “disloyal citizens” in the independent region.

With any proletariatization of a government should come a different outlook on the role of themselves in relation to smaller regions that lack the same means of political production. The protection of those in need, those with the least means to protect themselves should be the goal of a People’s Government. The oppression of these communities, sought by the richest and plumpest of the bourgeoisie’s invaders, imperialists, and demagogues, should neither be tolerated nor acquiesced.

Workers of the World, Unite. You have nothing to lose but your chains!

✯ ✯ ✯





This manifesto originally appeared on Lazarus' forum. It is reprinted here with the permission of its author, Harmoneia
Last edited by The Lazarene Gazette on Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:08 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby Afforess » Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:35 am

Erm,

So what if I don't recognize other regions exist? In my eyes, there is The Capitalist Paradise, her allies, and the unwashed barbarians. The barbarians get uppity from time to time, but are welcome to join Civilization. Barbarians can choose to group themselves however they wish, and these groups might even have names, like "Lazarus", but the simple act of a name does not grant you sovereignty. If I point at thin air in the sky, and name a certain patch differently, has the sky changed? No. Likewise with NationStates. If a group of nations cluster together and name themselves, they are just a group of nations. No different.

This is true independence.
Last edited by Afforess on Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Mad Jack
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Postby Mad Jack » Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:38 am

Defenderdom was once rife with these elites; The Alliance Defense Network was plump with politicians thirsty for power and privilege. But, having no loyalty to the cause, they abandoned defenderdom and left it to die in favor of “independence” – their greatest invention.


If you think defenderdom isn't still rife with these 'elites' then... lol basically.
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Klaus Devestatorie
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Postby Klaus Devestatorie » Mon Oct 28, 2013 3:10 am

The essay has merit, but it appears to mix up multiple brands of "Independence" and mix and match between specific tenants of each brand for it's own convenience. It would be better if individual brands were identified and then addressed each in turn.
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Solorni
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Postby Solorni » Mon Oct 28, 2013 4:41 am

Also, calling natives proletariats doesn't make it unique... simply pretentious and breaks George Orwells rules for writing.

I'm sure harmoneia who was given her position as delegate on a silver platter without doing any sort of work for it, surely understands the workers of the world who actually have had to work :lol:
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Zemnaya Svoboda
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Postby Zemnaya Svoboda » Mon Oct 28, 2013 4:56 am

Instead of blatant lies, propaganda contained kernel of truth.

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Kringalia
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Postby Kringalia » Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:06 am

Eh, I disagree. Independence might be a problem but it's not "the" problem. Rather I'd point out to its implementation, and GCRs all have a fault in that. Independence should not be an excuse to rely on alliances instead of developing your own military capabilities in both raidering and defending. Also, being independent doesn't mean that a region can't at times raid more than it defends and at other times do the other way around. I should also point out that this essay makes the mistake of equating picking a side in military gameplay with the automatic development of a regional identity, and equates independence with a lack of the same.

The real problem is having confused independence with complacency, and thus not making serious efforts to integrate military activities into a broader activity and participation policy, one which must exist in the first place. While there is nothing inherently wrong with being a raider or defender, doing both doesn't necessarily impair a region's capacity to develop adequately if it has an adequate implementation of its policies.

Also, what's with the "proletariat" and "burgueoiose" obsession? I get that you chose that theme, but come on. Do you really need that much theatricality in that essay?
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Postby Milograd » Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:27 am

Solorni wrote:I'm sure harmoneia who was given her position as delegate on a silver platter without doing any sort of work for it, surely understands the workers of the world who actually have had to work :lol:

Ah, of course! Well said, your majesty.

To summarize this post for any lethargic lurkers that might be strolling by, we see Balderan Scholar Rach demonstrating her supreme knowledge of Lazarene history by noting that three-time delegate Harmoneia has never worked for Lazarus, indeed! We must thank her for her enlightening and well-researched commentary on Lazarene history and Harmoneia's record of being a useless presence in Lazarus. It's too bad that Lazarus doesn't have a delegate with as much class, drive, and humility as Rach. :)

*offers cookies and scurries away*



No, but seriously, you should take the time to read up on Lazarus' history before making more unfounded lies about the region's members. Knowing your style, I'm sure you'll deflect against any criticism or calls for you to take responsibility for your actions or words, though. ;)
Last edited by Milograd on Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Solorni
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Postby Solorni » Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:30 am

The only work I've seen Harmoneia do since she quit the game when she was in Lazarus previously.... before rejoining Lazarus was only with the UDL. So I'm sorry, guess other regions simply have lower standards.

You couldn't just waltz into most regions after a long break and expect to be installed as delegate right away. Most or more meritocratic and have stronger traditions and value work.
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Zemnaya Svoboda
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Postby Zemnaya Svoboda » Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:43 am

To be fair, I imagine most regions tend to be less demanding when they are inactive. But I suppose fairness was not the point.

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Frattastan II
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Postby Frattastan II » Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:13 am

Solorni wrote:You couldn't just waltz into most regions after a long break and expect to be installed as delegate right away. Most or more meritocratic and have stronger traditions and value work.


Considering Lazarus's situation at the time Feux resigned, who else could have been a suitable candidate?
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Postby Feux » Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:46 am

Frattastan II wrote:
Solorni wrote:You couldn't just waltz into most regions after a long break and expect to be installed as delegate right away. Most or more meritocratic and have stronger traditions and value work.


Considering Lazarus's situation at the time Feux resigned, who else could have been a suitable candidate?

Fratt is right.
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Solorni
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Postby Solorni » Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:54 am

Frattastan II wrote:
Solorni wrote:You couldn't just waltz into most regions after a long break and expect to be installed as delegate right away. Most or more meritocratic and have stronger traditions and value work.


Considering Lazarus's situation at the time Feux resigned, who else could have been a suitable candidate?

Haha, fair enough... they really have nobody there :P
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Postby Unibot III » Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:52 am

Solorni wrote:
Frattastan II wrote:
Considering Lazarus's situation at the time Feux resigned, who else could have been a suitable candidate?

Haha, fair enough... they really have nobody there :P


Alternatively, it's good to see Balder positively brimming with fresh faces. Who's going to be the next delegate, North-East Somerset?

Your Culture and Interior positions in your cabinet are both advertised as vacant. There's also a vacancy in your six member legislature. Never mind that three of those legislators are also the members of the executive's cabinet.

Makes me wonder if Balder's supreme activity and participation isn't being exaggerated, when in fact the legislature is closed down to six people who for the most part already have a fairly good say in the direction of the region. In fact, a non-WA nation named "34625197" is the only member of the legislature who isn't in the cabinet or isn't speaker.

With this, I think you can safely add another post to your "Why I hate Unibot" thread, Rachel. Good-day.
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Postby Solorni » Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:58 am

Unibot III wrote:
Solorni wrote:Haha, fair enough... they really have nobody there :P


Alternatively, it's good to see Balder positively brimming with fresh faces. Who's going to be the next delegate, North-East Somerset?

Your Culture and Interior positions in your cabinet are both advertised as vacant. There's also a vacancy in your six member legislature. Never mind that three of those legislators are also the members of the executive's cabinet.

Makes me wonder if Balder's supreme activity and participation isn't being exaggerated, when in fact the legislature is closed down to six people who for the most part already have a fairly good say in the direction of the region. In fact, a non-WA nation named "34625197" is the only member of the legislature who isn't in the cabinet or isn't speaker.

With this, I think you can safely add another post to your "Why I hate Unibot" thread, Rachel. Good-day.

People resigned due to being busy irl... not sure why turnover is an issue? :P

Also, it's a "Why Unibot upsets me" thread and about your own chauvinistic and quite frankly disgusting comments towards myself. Not all of us enjoy bullying others.
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Postby McMasterdonia » Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:00 am

Isidor was originally a favourite to be Delegate of Balder but has recently started law school. Falconias would have been my bet for Delegate of Balder after Rach, but we'll have to see how active he is in the next few months and who else emerges. Mr. Riket is a new member of Balder and has been impressing everyone with his activity and ideas, and he is from Norway, perfect for Balder :)

There was some story behind 346... though I forget what it was. He has some good ideas for Balder though. Rach has announced the Iron Rebel and Zander as the new Ministers of Interior and Culture respectively. TIR resigned from the Riksdag just recently and an election is going to be held for that position. Personally I have been advocating for an open legislature with an elected Speaker, but some people value the elections and the activity that it brings and are not in favour of that change.
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Solorni
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Postby Solorni » Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:05 am

Also, I nearly always advertise positions... it's something I've always done as leader :)

It gives everyone a chance to put their name forward who wants to. Not everyone runs things as a dictator Unibot :P
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Postby Frattastan II » Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:56 am

Solorni wrote:
Frattastan II wrote:Considering Lazarus's situation at the time Feux resigned, who else could have been a suitable candidate?
Haha, fair enough... they really have nobody there :P


Well, if this is what people have to say now, I don't even want to imagine the slander and threats Lazarus would have received had they dared to elect a NPO-affiliated delegate. Or Milograd. Or someone not estabilished in interregional politics before. Or [whatever].
Harmoneia is active, experienced and competent. Some recent choices can be considered questionable if you want, but she was not handed over the delegacy on a "silver platter" with no considerations regarding her qualities and capabilities.

Going back to the topic (how did this become about Balder?), it'd be way better if more critiques of the piece went beyond stylistic choices, personal attacks and casual populist rhetoric. :P
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Postby Silver Seas » Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:33 am

Its not a critique of stylistic choice to point out that she conflates concepts not non-militarism, neutrality and independance as one single concept, when they are actually seperate terms that mean differant things.

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Postby Frattastan II » Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:38 am

Silver Seas wrote:Its not a critique of stylistic choice to point out that she conflates concepts not non-militarism, neutrality and independance as one single concept, when they are actually seperate terms that mean differant things.


I was referring to those who attacked the piece because of its use of terms like 'proletariat' and 'bourgeoisie'.
My comment - as it should be obvious from the exact wording - was not referred to all critiques presented so far, only to the majority of them.
The rest make good points but don't expand them at all.

And then there is Afforess's odd exceptionalist/solipsist thingy that I am not even counting, of course.
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Postby Silver Seas » Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:54 am

I would imagine that the primary reason as to why we don't see detailed thoughtful responses is because the number of people who would be persuaded approach nil. Lazarus has clearly made a choice, Unibot and most of the UDL have made their views on political independence known clearly, and Imperialists (like myself) and Independentists are themselves clear on their views.

At some point, having the same arguement (which this essentially is) over and over and over again gets tiring.

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Frattastan II
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Postby Frattastan II » Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:57 am

Then, I suppose posting anything here is pointless. ;)
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Postby Cerian Quilor » Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:34 am

90% of the time, it is indeed.

If I wasn't swamped with HW IRL, I'd probably give it a better effort (as I have in the past, at times), as I do enjoy debate, even useless debate, but right now the payoff for the energy and time (given other priorities for that time) isn't worth it.
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Unibot III
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Postby Unibot III » Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:38 am

I actually don't think it's mixing up different variants of "Independence"; Independence is one strand of the non-conventional military philosophies. In Paradise Found, I kind of made a hierarchy of philosophies.

Many commentators have tried to retcon "Independence" as simply being more vague to suggest its about pursuing their region's interests (rationalism/realism) without anymore fixed prescripts or further suppositions -- once its become fairly clear that these armies that try to both defend and raid, aren't particularly successful or active as R/D groups, many are now trying to suggest their earlier beliefs about R/D were wrong, but "Independence" is still remains unscathed because Independence never lied to us and told us our interests lay in pursuing both invading and defending, Independence just told us we should pursue our own interests whatever they are.

This is false, "Independence" from Day 1 has been realism + various presumptions about the nature of R/D -- see Westwind and Early Imperialist's commentary on "Independence", it's all in there.

Now, I won't pretend for a second that you could not simply say, "sure Independence is bullshit", but then remove those wrong presumptions but keep the realism and defend only its core belief that a region should pursue its interests (from there one may conclude, in fact, a region's interests lie in being defender or invader or neither -- whereas "Independence" always just told us the latter was the right answer). In fact, I defended that kind of rationalism in Paradise Found and throughout Book III and IV, envisioned how rationalism could find defenderism as rationalistic.

"The False Independence" goes in a different direction. It seems to argue that rationalism is a lot less clear cut than I or many other commentators make it out to be. That perhaps there's is so much a "region's interest" as there is interests of some members of a region and interests of the other members in a region... from this it concludes that "Independence" serves the interests of some political elites, but not the general public (whose regions are now, less active, influential or secure). I find this deconstruction possibly illuminating about something I thought was pretty obvious (that a region just plainly as "interests") -- it may be, in some ways, kind of cosmopolitan in a way, because it's removing "regions" from the theoretical calculus and looking at the individuals (or more aptly, the classes of people) benefiting or losing with various policies. I've always been very critical of the presumption of others that a region's interests are clear and obvious, so I welcome this line of thought even if it's divergence from the way I've theorized.
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Silver Seas
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Ex-Nation

Postby Silver Seas » Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:44 am

Yes, it does mix things up, Unibot. It conflates minimal military activity as a regional proposition with neutrality and with Independence. You are indeed guilty of vague-ifying it as well. Independence is a coherent set of beliefs about the pursuit of regional interests and isn't merely a proposition of staking some sort of R/D middle ground, nor is it not engaging in military activity at all. Military activity is one part of Independence, and hardly the core.

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