|Union and Republic of Alcenia|
Motto: From our forefathers, to our posterity
Anthem: "O'er the Plains of Gold and Red"
Map of Alcenia and its eleven states
|Largest city||La Casa Caliente, Vellonia|
|Recognised regional languages|
|Ethnic groups (2018)||
76% white (55% non-Hispanic white) |
10% mixed or other
|Government||Federal constitutional republic|
|Grant Carlyle (CD)|
|Holden Beck (CD)|
|Sandra McClean (SR)|
|Legislature||Congress of Alcenia|
|House of Commons|
• Formation declared
|August 28, 1866|
• Constitution ratified
|October 11, 1866|
• 2017 estimate
• 2010 census
• Per capita
very high · 3rd
|Currency||Alcenian dollar ($) (A$) (ALD)|
|Time zone||MST (UTC−7)|
|Drives on the||right|
|ISO 3166 code||AL|
Alcenia, officially the Union and Republic of Alcenia, is a sovereign state located in central North America, ranging from the southwest desert to the northern plains.
Founded by homesteaders who migrated from the east, Alcenia was established as a compact between several semi-sovereign states under the principles of mutual cooperation and a shared commonwealth. Preston Handel was a political pioneer for the infant nation and is widely regarded as its founder. His work, as well as the work of many of his colleagues and contemporaries, led to the establishment of the Constitution of Alcenia, which created the framework for a federal republic and guaranteed the protection of various civil liberties, including freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and property rights. The independence and formation of the Union was announced on August 28, 1866, which is honored today as Independence Day.
The early nation began with many struggles as the region it originally encompassed, the cold tundra of North America, provided little exploitable natural resources. The country expanded south, bringing it into conflicts with the California Republic and the Republic of Tenochtitlan, from which it emerged victorious, securing new land for the massive population increase that was to follow. It also warred with various indigenous tribes, eventually ending in peace agreements that remain controversial today. In 1879, gold was discovered in the southern territories of the nation, which spurred a massive migration from across the continent and the admission of new states into the Union. These migrants, bringing with them their languages, cultures, and customs, helped to establish the multicultural society Alcenia is known for today. Over the next century, Alcenia's population grew from just under 1 million to nearly 51 million as of 2017.
Today, Alcenia is considered a regional or great power. Its gross domestic product in 2017 was $3.2 trillion with $64,000 per capita, approximately. It is governed as a federal republic, as established in the constitution, with 11 states and one federal district, Sunalie, which is home to the Congress, the Supreme Court, the President of Alcenia, and 870,000 residents. It is known for being very politically diverse, with a mixture of socially conservative and fiscally liberal policies. In recent years, race, culture, the indigenous population, and wealth inequality have been the defining issues for the nation. It is a major contributor to the international community, being a member of the United Nations, the Union of American Nations, the G10, the G20, and is a partner with other supranational organizations including the European Union and the East Asia Group.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 2.1 Prehistory
- 2.2 19th century
- 2.3 20th century
- 2.4 21st century
- 3 Government and politics
- 4 Foreign relations and military
- 5 Economy
- 6 Infrastructure
- 7 Geography and climate
- 8 Demographics
- 9 Education
- 10 Culture
- 11 Atlas
The name "Alcenia" is a Latinization of the Howakowee word "Alsaoi" which, according to different sources, means either "blessing" or "friendship", possibly both. The name was first proposed by John Hewhether in 1865, when the country was still an idea in the minds of the western settlers. Heriwehter had studied the native tribes that lived in the region and sought to apply their cultural heritage onto the burgeoning nation. He proposed the name to Preston Handel and he immediately became fond of it. Prior to this, the country was referred to by several names including Westania, Handeland, the United States of West America, Homesteadia, Occidentalia, and Arietia.
Further information: History of Alcenia
Humans have inhabited what would become Alcenia for at least 12,000 years. The main tribal groups active in the area at the time of the Western Exploration were the aforementioned Howakowee, Nanijavo, Kunk, Shanasiwe, and Northern Kaanaawle. It is thought there were between 30 and 100 groups that have inhabited Alcenia over the last ten millennia.
Before the creation of the federal republic, Alcenia was a collection of loosely allied and semi-sovereign states that cooperated under an informal arrangement. The terms of this arrangement were ill-defined and relied on the trustworthiness of each of the participants. Four states were part of this original alliance: Perro Rocosso, Boske, Sidanevi, and Iluvia and together they are known within the country as the "Founding Four." A desire for a stronger union between the four states began to spread across them and this movement was led by Preston Handel, a politician from Iluvia. Handel advocated for the establishment of a constitution which would bind the states into a federal union. A convention was called between the four states to begin a draft of a potential constitution and to discuss ideas for how the federal government should be organized. They modeled the government after ideas of federalism and republicanism that were flourishing east, drafting a constitution that established three branches of government, with an emphasis on the separation of powers.
The work of the Constitutional Convention was completed by July 1865 and was submitted to each of the states for review and approval. This process was the most difficult period for the constitutionalist movement as each state had some objection or opposition to the proposed plan for a federal government. Almost a year of negotiation was required, mainly surrounding the powers of what would become the Alcenian Senate, before all four states agreed to ratify the constitution. Sidanevi was the first to do so in June 1866, followed by Perro Rocosso, Iluvia in July, and finally Boske in August 1866. The ratification was certified by the constitutional convention on August 28, 1866, thus formally establishing the Union and Republic of Alcenia.
The first task of the new nation was to elect its government. The office of the presidency received enormous amount of attention due to the large field that vied for the office. Out of nearly 200 people who threw their name into the contest, five men emerged as front-runners, including Preston Handel, who remained very popular in his home state of Iluvia and elsewhere. His platform was not very different from that of his opponents but writers and journalists of the time noted Handel's oratory skills and charisma, which made him a formidable candidate. His strongest opponents were David Bell, a state senator from Boske, Nathan Beal, mayor of Jarson, Iluvia, and Merriwhether Andreas, a businessman from Perro Rocosso. On election day, 1866, Handel was elected unanimously by the electoral college, carrying all four states for a total 20 electoral votes and 74% of the popular vote. The large margin he won by gave him a solid mandate to govern as the nation's first president and has not been replicated by any president since.
Handel took office on January 6, 1867 along with 40 members of the newly-elected Congress of Alcenia. Although no political parties had been formally founded at that time, two schools of political thought had already emerged and formed factions within the young Congress: the Handelists and the Frontierists. The Handelists, as their name implies, were supporters of President Handel and his agenda and sought to deliver his mandate in the legislature. The Frontierists supported agrarian interests and sought to retain the privileges and rights the nation's farmers had enjoyed prior to the ratification of the Constitution. Handel's first priority was to connect the vast countryside together and unite the nation under the strength of the federal government and sought to do this by establishing a network of railway. Rail did exist in the country when Handel assumed office, but it was poorly maintained and the lines that were laid down were of little economic benefit. Handel wrangled with the Frontierists who opposed the laying down of new rail in the rural regions of the country. Many members of the new Congress who aligned with the Frontierist faction were actually supportive of the idea of a new national railway, but felt obligated to their constituents, who were largely opposed to it due to the amount of land they would be required to give up for the project. Handel was able to use their support to his advantaged and persuaded most of them to return to their constituencies and convince the rural farmers to accept a compromise: that the government would pay each farmer approximately $89 per acre (equivalent to $7,211 per acre in 2018) of land used for the construction of the railways, and that all farmers would be exempt from fares for 30 years. This offer was accepted and the Frontierists returned ready to pass legislation that would create the first National Railway, the first major accomplishment of the new federal government. With the railway in place, the newly-created Alcenia Postal Service was able to deliver mail to regions previously unreachable and the earliest telecommunication infrastructure was erected as a result of the new rail network, interconnecting the nation.
Expansion and conflicts
Main article: Southern Wars
Although gradual settlement of territories south of Alcenia had already been occurring, a gold rush that began in 1879 increased migration south dramatically, drawing the attention of Alcenia's western and southern neighbors, who both claimed the area but had done little to administrate it due to its prior low economic value. Alcenia asserted a claim to the regions that would become Vellonia, Ilanuras, and Keiwasta. In the north, the Founding Four had expanded their borders into previously unorganized territory and several new non-state territories were created by Congress. In the south, the Vellonia Territory, which comprised the majority of the southern land, was formed by an act of Congress in 1881, which the Republic of California and the Republic of Tenochtitlan saw as an act of war and sent approximately 13,000 troops each to enforce their claims to the land. President William Bowell sent a letter to Congress informing them of the invasion of the Vellonia Territory and requested a declaration of war. This request was rebuffed by the sitting Praetor Kendall McInnes, who believed the southward expansion was illegal both under Alcenian law and international law, and that Bowell was antagonizing California and Tenochtitlan. McInnes's views were not shared by the majority of his Congress, however, who were inflamed with patriotism and granted Bowell's request. McInnes resigned in protest as a result.
The war was easily won by Alcenia due to the fact that California and Tenochtitlan spent much of it fighting each other, which allowed Alcenia to swoop in where the two nations had left undefended. Before long, Alcenia had quietly seized two-thirds of the contested region back for Vellonia before the other two southern nations turned their attention to Alcenia. By that time, however, the two countries were too weak to meaningfully challenge Alcenia's hold on the territories and they were quickly repulsed. Tenochtitlan sued for peace and was followed shortly by California as the monetary and human cost of the war had become too great for them to justify continuing. A peace treaty was signed by all three on September 19, 1882, a day which is now known as Vellonia Day.
After the war's end, the Vellonia Territory was split into three more territories: Keiwasta and Ilanuras, which eventually became states in 1886 and 1887, respectively.
First Great Awakening
Beginning in 1890, a movement was brewing in the north that consisted of renewed religious enthusiasm and a general rejection of the rationalism and emphasis on reason that was dominant during the Age of Enlightenment. Interest in the supernatural became widespread throughout Sidanevi and quickly moved to other states. A rejection of the dominant Christian-oriented understanding of theology also occurred and many in the north became involved in occult and hermetic traditions. An interest in Gnosticism, both with and without its Christian elements, took hold in northern states which led to the establishment of hundreds of churches and religious organizations, and the elevation of their leaders to national recognition. Among these leaders was Charles Julian, who had founded the Church of Iamil in 1892 after he claimed to witness several visions of a land he referred to as Iamil and the prophets who lived there. His theological beliefs had some origins in gnosticism, especially his belief of God as a demiurge, but were also heavily influenced by Christian traditions of his time. His following grew rapidly in the latter half of the 1890s and his congregation began to be seen as a threat by politicians in his home state of Garfield, who were largely uninterested in the religious fervor taking place and rejected the movement as anti-Christian. Devon Wasterly, governor of Garfield in 1891, accused Julian of attempting to corrupt Christian youths and sought to have him arrested for this. In response, Julian rallied his followers to move to a new state that would be more friendly to their beliefs and together the church voted on Sidanevi, as many similar movements had made that state their home as well. Before the move could be organized though, Julian was arrested on March 18, 1892 on "lewd and lascivious acts with a minor"and was held in Neward State Jail for three months before being released because of a lack of evidence. While he was detained, his followers engaged in protests which frequently turned violent. After Julian's release, the Church of Iamil moved to Sidanevi where they established their own settlement, named after their leader.
The Great Awakening helped to create the distinct political differences between the predominately southern half of the country and the predominately northern half. The Conservative Democratic Party found solid support in the north while the south was split among two parties: the National Union and Justice Party, who were precursors to the Social Democratic Party and later Social Republican Party.
With the fervor of the Great Awakening settling down, Alcenian society entered into a period of prosperity and general social enthusiasm. Many technologies now taken for granted today were being adopted in large scale during the 1920s, including the aeroplane, radio, and especially automobiles. When automobiles first became affordable to the average Alcenian, cities across the country raced to adopt their infrastructure to accommodate them. Economic prosperity was the defining characteristic of the decade and there was a cultural attitude of what Dr. Robert Nash described as "invincibility," that man had conquered nature fully and the coming decades would be even more glorious. Futurism rose in popularity as artists and authors envisioned the potential technological advancements that would be made in the next century, many of which did not come to pass. Many intellectuals of the day used futurism as a basis for policy change. Eugenics originated out of the futurism movement and a belief that science and technology could vastly improve the human condition and genome to create a "supergeneration." Some states, particularity Keiwasta, adopted eugenics policies and encouraged the breeding of "Class A" citizens and discouraged the breeding of "Low-Use" citizens. Techniques used to this end were widely accepted at the time but have become controversial and mostly rejected in modern times, mainly due to their later association with fascism and the Nazi Party which would employ these same tactics a decade later, and included forced sterilization and forced abortions.
The 1920s in Alcenia were also a cultural boom with some of the most notable and enduring names in cinema, theater, dance, radio, and music crafting their reputations during this time period.
The first waves of women's rights movements also began in this era, including the suffragette movement successfully leading the passage of the Seventh Amendment to the Alcenian Constitution, prohibiting states from denying the right to vote on the basis of sex. Reproductive rights and advances in birth control also made their first attempts at social change during this time, but found little enduring success. Abortion laws in some states were relaxed but by the 1950s these changes had been reversed. Aviation, then a burgeoning new industry, was largely seen as a woman's field in Alcenia due to the high number of female pilots who made many firsts in the realm of aviation. An unprecedented number of women were also elected to public office, even before the passage of the Seventh Amendment and indeed, many women ran for office to highlight the fact many of them could not vote for themselves. In 1922, Elizabeth Crisp became the first woman elected to the Congress of Alcenia, representing Ilanuras' 2nd riding.
Great Depression and civil unrest
The enthusiasm and prosperity of the 1920s came to a crashing halt with the Great Depression, which was heralded by the Crash of 1929. The entire nation was plunged into a severe economic depression that sent unemployment skyrocketing. Hundreds of thousands of workers were out of a job and took to the streets in protest, which was the start of the modern Alcenian labor movement. The Labor Party heavily capitalized on the unrest in the 1930 elections, promising bold new social insurance programs intended to soften the impact of the depression. They won by a landside, taking 232 of the 340 seats in the House of Commons and all but one seat in the Senate, an electoral performance that has not been matched since. The Labor nominee for President, Hugh A. Mathers, won with 63.5% of the vote, running on a platform of punishing the wealthy elites responsible for the crash and passing an agenda that was designed to ensure such a another depression would not happen again. When the 32nd Congress took office, there was a strong sense of unity among the Labor Party as well as the opposing Conservative Democrats, who were determined to halt what they believed to be an unprecedented seizure of power by the federal government. Timothy J. Walter, the House Minority Leader during the 32nd Congress, accused the newly-inaugurated President Mathers of exploiting a national crisis in order to win power for himself and his friends in Congress. Mathers responded by accusing Walter of being a "Docile pet" of "trusts, banks, and
The sense of unity began to deteriorate about half-way into Mathers' first term as more extremist elements of the Labor Congressional delegation began to reveal themselves. Around thirty members of the House of Commons had expressed sympathy or outright support for communist movements in other countries and others advocated for such a movement in Alcenia. President Mathers was quick to distance himself from those politicians but came short of condemning communism, something he received intense criticism from the Conservative Democrats. Tim Walter again made another biting accusation against the president, this time asserting he was a secret communist sympathizer, a charge the president ignored. The growing cracks in the Labor Party stalled legislation key to President Mathers' agenda, which cost him in approval. In La Casa Caliente, four people were killed when pro-labor demonstrators clashed with police who had declared the protest illegal. The incident was widely covered in the press and inflamed the leftist elements within not only the Alcenian Congress, but in state legislatures across the country.
World War II
Main article: World War II in North America
When the Second World War broke out in Europe with the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939, Alcenia opted to stay neutral. President Francis Fairbairn was strongly opposed to neutrality but was unable to convince Congress to pass appropriations to fund the Allies in Europe. Fascist groups within Alcenia began to appear as Germany advanced through Poland and eventually France, calling on the Alcenian government to back Hitler and the Axis. These groups clashed with the leftist and communist elements of Alcenian society and added to the unrest that characterized the decade. By the 1940s, the Tenochtitlanese government had been overthrown by the Social Care and National Unity Party led by Enrique Gilberto Soto, who seized power in the country as Generalissimo of the Republic, and espoused an irredentist agenda, seeking to retake control of territories that were lost in the Southern Conflicts seventy years ago. Tensions between Tenochtitlan and Alcenia increased and Congress approved emergency appropriations to fortify the southern border. Peace negotiations opened up between the two governments on the behest of President Fairbairn, but ultimately failed. On June 17, 1941, Tenochtitlan officially joined the Axis, and with their support, invaded Keiwasta on July 1 that same year, bringing World War II to North America.
The Tenochtitlanese immediately captured the city of San Juan and subjugated the residents there to what became known as La Opresion. Non-Hispanic white people (or Blancos) were subject to human rights abuses, including torture, war rape, repression of culture, and theft of property. Tenochtitlan allowed for 45,000 settlers, mostly family of servicemen, to settle San Juan and the surrounding areas, displacing the Alcenian population. Some Alcenians were able or allowed to flee before the Tenochtitlan began their occupation, while others were forced into labor by the occupying forces. Support for neutrality vanished overnight as news of what was happening in San Juan started reaching the rest of the country. President Fairbairn requested an immediate declaration of war from Congress, which he received by a unanimous vote in both chambers. On July 2, Alcenia not only declared war on Tenochtitlan, but on Germany, Japan, and Italy as well, and pledged to join the Allies in the European theater. The California Republic had also attempted to remain neutral, but was forced under public pressure to back the Allies and formally joined Alcenia's side of the conflict against Tenochtitlan. Two weeks after the invasion, President Fairbairn signed into law the Security and Emergency War Powers Act of 1941, which, among other things, allowed the President to inter all citizens with Tenochtitlanese ancestry. The decision to include this provision in the law came after General Soto had openly declared on state media that "Each man and woman who traces their forefathers to Tenochtitlan, is working for our glorious republic. And I call upon each to topple the blanco occupiers and restore our rightful homelands!" By the end of 1941, the Alcenian government had erected more than seventy interment camps, used to house approximately 450,000 people with more than 45% Tenochtitlanese ancestry.
By the end of the European Theatre, the Californian-Alcenian Coalition had pushed the Tenochtitlanese back behind the original sovereign borders and victory was within reach. However, attempts to sue for peace failed despite repeated requests for an unconditional surrender. The military leadership of Tenochtitlan was resolved to see the war until the bitter end, and force the Alcenians to waste resources in obliterating Tenochititlan. The political atmosphere of Tenochtitlan at that time would also not allow a surrender for the public still supported the irredentist Soto. Research into an atomic weapon had come to fruition and Fairbairn was presented with two options: Either invade Tenochtitlan and topple Soto's government, costing hundreds of thousands of Alcenian and Tenochtitlanese lives, or utilize the experimental weapon that its creators promise could end the war in one day. The choice was not as obvious as modern historians have deemed it today, as the weapon had never been tested and there was no time to schedule a test as pressure was ramping up to end the war quickly. Fairbairn opted to use the atomic bomb, albeit a weaker version than originally proposed to him. From a list of targets, Xalapa was chosen to be the site where the bomb would be dropped. Xalapa was a major military base and center for weapons production. It was moderately populated, which fit in with the Alcenian Army's desire to minimize civilian casualties. On August 3, the B-29 superfortress Elaine Little dropped the first atomic bomb ever developed for combat, code named Marduk, on Xalapa, causing approximately 45,000 immediate deaths and around 25,000 deaths in the weeks following.
After the bombing, the military leadership of Tenochtitlan experienced a crisis. About half of the generals and other leaders were shaken by the destruction of the Alcenian bomb, and demanded the country surrender before any more were dropped. Others, including Soto, believed it was their national destiny to either remove Alcenians from their homeland, or die trying. Soto was recounted as saying "The world belongs to the strong. It is our resolve that we would be the ones that ruled our lands, but if the Lord Almighty God commandeth otherwise, than who are we to protest? We shall die as heroes, for our nation and for our people. We will die with honor." As the leadership of Tenochtitlan argued, President Fairbairn issued a communique that demanded an unconditional surrender within one week, or more bombs would follow, more powerful than Marduk, and less discriminate in their targets.
Five days passed with no response, and Fairbairn was preparing to drop another bomb and General Harding drafted targets, including the very populated Zapopan. In addition, 240,000 Alcenian and 120,000 Californian troops amassed where the fronts had stabilized, waiting for orders to begin a massive invasion in the event of a second bombing with no subsequent surrender. On the sixth day after the bombing, August 9, President Fairbairn received a message from Agapito Ángel Martinez, a prominent member of Soto's war cabinet. Martinez informed Fairbairn that Soto had been overthrown and imprisoned and that the country was ready to accept a surrender under the assurance no more atomic bombs would be dropped. Fairbairn suspended plans for further bombings and the invasion while he consulted with his own cabinet as to whether Martinez could be believed. Radio signals received from Tenochtitlan confirmed that Soto had indeed been overthrown in a coup. Upon learning this, Fairbairn replied to Martinez's message, accepting the surrender, effectively ending the war.
Labor dominance and later Blue Wave
After the war, the Labor Party came to dominate Alcenian politics. The wartime presidency of Fairbairn was immediately succeeded by Samuel Evander, who promised to continue and expand on Fairbairn's social policies, essecially regarding worker's rights. He came into office with a resounding mandate, with the Labor Party holding 85% of the seats in the House of Commons and all but three seats in the Senate, the largest margin in Alcenian electoral history. The successes of the Labor Party would not last, however, as the Conservative Democrats were still able to put up a considerable opposition to the Labor agenda, primarily through the use of the filibuster in the Senate, which had, until then, been a rarely-used tactic. Furthermore, at the state and local levels, the Conservative Democratic Party continued to perform very well contending with the Labor Party, especially in the north; it was during this era that the northern states solidified themselves as Conservative Democratic strongholds.
As the post-victory enthusiasm began to wane down, so did support for the Labor Party. Unemployment remained high despite the vast number of jobs available, mainly due to the lack of skilled workers needed to fill them. Many programs proposed by the Labor Party failed to reach the voting floor in Congress due to successful opposition by the Conservative Democrats in addition to (and arguably largely because of) internal disagreements within the party. These disagreements represented the first cracks in the Labor Party which would lead to its collapse in 1972. In 1950, President Evander died of a sudden stroke at the age of 50, which profoundly shocked the nation. He was immediately succeeded by Vice President Zevulun Foster, who was markedly more conservative. Foster did not have presidential aspirations either and took a very backseat approach to the office, to the dismay of his advisors and party supporters. He cancelled or even called reverse what few policies Evander was able to pass, which led to a steep decline in Evander's popularity, which adversely affected the party as a whole. Nevertheless, Foster opted to run in the 1950 presidential election; it was reported he once said "I have no interest in being president, but I have even further disinterest in seeing the Conservative Democrats in power." Zeuvulun won by safe margin (50.8% to 47.6%) but the Labor Party still struggled. During the 1950 elections, the Labor Party lost a significant portion of the majority in the House of Commons, now controlling 62% of the seats in that chamber. They lost control of the Senate, trailing the Conservative Democrats by 2 seats, representing the largest shift in either chamber in Alcenian history. This made it even more difficult for the Labor Party to enact their agenda, which increased stress on the party.
Foster decided not to run for another full term in the 1954 elections. Neil R. Pender, a Conservative Democrat, defeated the Labor nominee Kellan MacDonald with 52.4% of the vote. The Labor Party lost their majority in the House and more seats in the Senate. Pender was the first Conservative Democrat to become President since the party's founding in 1904.
Second Great Awakening
Rise of counterculture
See also: Counterculture in Alcenia (1960-1979)
The counterculture in Alcenia originated in various university campuses across the country, beginning in the early 1960s and continuing until the late 1970s. Various cultural movements converged on one another to form the counterculture of this era, including the New Age movement, the Grata movement, rock n' roll, the hippie movement, and the psychedelic movement. The religious revival of the Second Great Awakening was the catalyst for various forms of revolt and rebellion. Sexual mores of Alcenian culture at that time were challenged, which coincided with the mass availability of the birth control pill and the nationwide legalization of most forms of contraceptives following the Supreme Court decision Alanspan v. Keiwasta. Unlike the First Great Awakening, which saw the rise of many non-Christian religious movements, the Second Great Awakening greatly strengthened the convictions of Protestant communities across Alcenia, which formed the basis of counter-Awakening social criticism. Dr. Christopher Stoddard, a professor at the University of Ilanuras, Rhodes, published a book in 1961 entitled The Bible: A Work Examined which took an aggressive critical view of the Bible. Stoddard highlighted what he saw as hypocrisy among Christians: "The Bible orders that a rapist must marry his victim, but do any Christians in our present era believe this? Of course not, because the Christian has within the back of his mind doubts that he cannot entertain, and so banishes them by imposing his will onto the body politic." The work was extremely controversial and was banned from many public libraries, leading to just as many court battles, but it also galvanized the New Age movement in Alcenia, which placed an emphasis on breaking away from the Christian-centered theology that had dominated much of Alcenian religious and public life. The Iamilian Church attempted to capitalize on this, but found little success, as many within the countercultural movement saw it as part of the religious establishment. Eastern traditions and several original religious philosophies arose and flourished among the youths of Alcenian colleges. Psychedelics were used heavily by members of the movement, and a renewed interest in Jungian and Freudian psychology occurred among them. Some left religion altogether and promoted atheism as an alternative.
The response to the counterculture was mixed. Young people comprised a great portion of the Second Great Awakening and they frequently clashed with their countercultural peers. As the Second Great Awakening cooled down, a sort of 'metacounterculture' took its place, with reactionary movements forming in opposition to the counterculture of the 1960s. The Zoomers were one of these reactionary movements. Named after the punk-rock band the Zoom, who advocated for much of their ideas, they promoted abstention from drugs, alcohol, premarital sex, and other forms of excess pleasures, and criticized the perceived vapidness of their countercultural peers. In some iterations, they promoted a 'responsible' form of counterculture, adopting the criticisms of Christianity but with a more intellectual stance, and with a mission to reform the faith or replace it with a 'solid' alternative.
By the 1980s these cultural conflicts had waned down, although the ideas that were spread around during this time have endured and some have seen renewed interest. The sexual revolution has been an enduring movement as well as its reactionary counterpart. The Grata movement, which focused on individualism, self-ownership, and libertarian ideals, have, in some forms, been co-opted by the two dominant political parties in Alcenia. However, many of the religious revolutions that occurred did not sustain their influence as the counterculture movement came to a close, although a few still survive as part of the Alcenian occult scene.
Dot Com boom
Terrorist attacks and response
Great Recession and current developments
Government and politics
Alcenia is a federation of 11 states and one federal district, Sunalie, which is the home of the President, Vice President, Congress, and the Supreme Court of Alcenia. The Constitution of Alcenia is the supreme law of the land and has been so since it was ratified in 1866. It establishes the three branches of the federal government, the powers of Congress, the President, the courts, and the rights and powers of the states and the people.
Congress consists of two chambers: the Senate, and the House of Commons. There are 22 senators, two from each state, who are directly elected by the people of their state at-large. The House of Commons has 170 members each are directly elected by the people of a constituent riding in their home state. The number of representatives each state has in the House of Commons is proportional to its population. Vellonia, being the most populous state, has 56 representatives while Yewi, the least populous, has 3. Congress has a variety of powers and was designed to be the 'main' branch of the government. Congress has the power to lay and collect taxes, declare war, establish lines of credit for Alcenia, approve treaties with foreign states, and the power of impeachment of federal officials. Some powers are chamber-specific, such as taxes; all bills to raise revenue and appropriations must originate in the House of Commons. Terms for senators are four years and elections for Senate are staggered so half of the chamber is up for election every two years, in conjunction with the terms for representatives, all 170 of which are contested every two years. After each election, Congress selects a Praetor, who is nominated by the House of Commons and confirmed by the Senate, and acts as the highest legislative official in Congress.
The executive branch consists of the President and all cabinet members and their respective federal departments and agencies. The President's primary power is the ability to sign or veto legislation passed by Congress. As the head of the executive branch, it is the President's duty to enforce the laws passed by Congress. The President is also the commander-in-chief of the Alcenian Armed Forces. The President has the power to negotiate treaties which he may sign before sending them to Congress for approval. Previously, the president was selected by an electoral college, whereby he would be indirectly elected by the people, who would select electors who would in turn cast their votes for president. This system was abolished in 1902 in favor of a direct vote. The 1906 election was the first presidential election under the modern system.
The judiciary consists of the Supreme Court of Alcenia and all inferior federal courts, which are ordained and established by Congress. The Supreme Court is the court of last resort and has the power of judicial review, hearing cases regarding the constitutionality of a variety of laws and issues, and handing down opinions that form precedent to be followed by all other inferior courts. Below the Supreme Court is a system of circuit courts and below them are various state court systems. There are also several issue-specific courts, such as the Alcenia Court of Bankruptcy and the Alcenia Court of Taxation.
Alcenia is divided into 11 states and one federal district. Each state is in turn divided into counties or county-equivalents. All 11 states share sovereignty with the federal government and each state is legally equal with every other state. There are no border checks or controls and all Alcenian citizens are free to move between states without government permission. Each state models its government in a manner similar to the federal government, although constitutionally all states are free to organize their government however they wish, so as long as it follows a republican form. Each state has a chief executive, called a governor, a judiciary, and seven states have a bicameral legislature (four, Keiwasta, Yewi, Garfield, and Boske have a unicameral legislature).
Vellonia is the most populous state with approximately 16.4 million residents and Yewi is the least populous, with approximately 850,000.
|State||Flag||Capital||Population (2017 estimate)||Seal||Abbreviation|
|Vellonia||La Casa Caliente||16,400,000||VL|
|Name||Flag||Population (2017 estimate)||Seal||Abbreviation|
|Sunalie||870,000||SN or AFD|
There are two major political parties in Alcenia: the Conservative Democratic Party and the Social Republican Party. The Conservative Democrats represent the center-right to right-wing faction of Alcenian politics whereas the Social Republicans represent the center-left to left-wing faction. Together, they have dominated Alcenian politics since 1972 (and earlier if one counts the predecessor to the Social Republicans, the Labor Party).
The Conservative Democrats were founded upon the principles of social conservatism. Economically, they lean classical liberal and neoliberal politics. They are the older of the two parties, founded in 1904 as a small social club of politically active young men. By 1922, they had opened their ranks to women and people of all ages and had become a full-fledged party. Currently, the President and Vice President are members of the party. Like their rivals, they support the existence of a general welfare state, especially Social Security, but also support general deregulation of the economy, low taxes, and a balanced budget. Socially, they are opposed to same-sex marriage, support restrictions on immigration, are generally pro-life, are opposed to the death penalty, support gun rights, and support privatization of the school system. Conservative Democrats believe in states rights and are opposed to what they see as federal encroachment upon the country. They also support increased patrol and security along the southern border with Tenochtitlan and are opposed to granting citizenship to Tenochtitlan defectors.
The Social Republicans are the direct successor to the Labor Party, which collapsed in 1972 due to internal infighting and disagreements during a period of Conservative Democratic dominance. Since then, they have risen to become the current ruling party in both chambers of Congress (as of the 75th Congress). Their platform is generally fiscally and socially liberal. They support higher taxes on the highest income earners of the country, expansion of social welfare programs including Alcare, greater centralization of the federal government, implementation of a carbon tax, consumer and worker protection laws, and net neutrality. Socially, they support same-sex marriage, are pro-choice, support gun control, increased immigration, a semi-open border policy, secularization of society, and stronger anti-discrimination laws.
The Conservative Democrats perform best in the northern half of the country while the Social Republicans dominate much of the south, with the exception of Ilanuras, which is a notorious swing state. The central region of the country is often the most contested region between the two parties with neither party having a firm grasp. The central region often is the deciding factor each election cycle.
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