- This country is part of the Altverse universe.
Brazorian Confederation (en)
Motto: "One and Indivisible"
Anthem: Long Shine the Lone Star
Location of Brazoria in North America
|Official languages||English, Spanish, German, Creole|
|Ethnic groups |
64% White |
|Government||Confederated council democracy|
|Henry Possetnick (ULP)|
|Jessica Garcia (SLP)|
|Stuart Shoettelkoede (ULP)|
|Independence from Mexico|
|2 March 1836|
|2 February 1848|
|11 May 1861|
|30 May 1931|
|1,201,404 km2 (463,865 sq mi) (36th)|
• 2017 estimate
• 2010 census
|37.05/km2 (96.0/sq mi) (174th)|
|GDP (PPP)||2017 estimate|
|$2.421 trillion (12th)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2017 estimate|
|$1.914 trillion (10th)|
• Per capita
|Currency||Dollar ($, B$) (BAZ)|
|Time zone||UTC-6:30 (BST)|
• Summer (DST)
|ISO 3166 code||BAZ|
The Brazorian Confederation is a sovereign state located in central North America. Brazoria is composed of 23 provinces, and it is bordered to the north by Superior and Tournesol, to the east by the United Commonwealth, to the west by Sierra, to the south by Mexico, and to the southeast by the Gulf of Mexico. Brazoria has a total land area of about 1,201,404 square kilometres, making it the world's 36th largest country by land area, and with an estimated population of 44.216 million people as of 2018, Brazoria is the 33rd most populous nation in the world.
Brazoria is a confederation of 23 regions. Every region is responsible for a wide array of administrative functions, including, but not limited to, education, healthcare, law enforcement, transportation, and socioeconomic development. Residents within the region directly elect their regional councils and Diet nominees, while these councils in turn determine which nominees are sent to the Diet. The Diet elects from within itself the members of the Executive Council, the central decision-making body of the Confederation. Within the Executive Council, a Chancellor and Vice Chancellor are elected, who in turn form the Confederation Government and nominate candidates for approval by the Diet to lead the all-confederation Directorates. Collectively, the Chancellor, Vice Chancellor, and Directors of Brazoria coordinate matters of state which ascend beyond purely regional matters, with executive oversight in areas such as defence, foreign affairs, and law. Brazoria's current governmental system was established by the 1937 Constitution.
The earliest inhabitants of Brazoria were various indigenous tribes of diverse culture groups scattered across the country. Spain was the first European nation to enter into and explore what was then known as Texas, doing so as early as 1526 with the expedition led by Pánfilo de Narváez along the Gulf Coast. Despite strong initial claims by Spain, the French would attempt to challenge them with the establishment of the ill-fated Fort Saint Louis in 1685, leading to the formal declaration of Spanish claims over Texas in 1690. With the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War, the colonial government expedited the settlement process through the granting of land to empresarios, whose families were given special privileges in return for bringing many new settlers. The Intendancy of Texas was established in 1787, followed by another period of mass immigration with the outbreak of the Mexican War of Independence in 1810. After Mexican authorities established control over all of New Spain, a crack down on Anglo settlement in Texas caused a revolt which ultimately led to the Texas Revolution in 1835 and the subsequent establishment of the Republic of Texas the following year. The young republic was victorious in winning its independence, but the Mexicans would continue to see the country as a province-in-rebellion until the end of the Mexican-American War in 1848 with the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo. That same year, with its national land claims recognized by its neighbors, the 1848 Constitution was formally adopted and the Republic of Brazoria was established.
The Brazorian government encouraged quick expansion into its vast territorial claims, an action which resulted in the Crisis on the Rio Grande and the ensuing Pact of the Rockies with Sierra. Cooperation with Sierra expanded into a full alliance after the outbreak of the War of Contingency. Assured political independence gave way to a lasseiz faire approach to economic growth which culminated in the economic dominance of the ranching and railroads industries. The discovery of oil at Spindletop led Brazoria into a major economic boom fueled by petroleum exploration. The Great Depression and the Dust Bowl halted this exponential growth, resulting in unprecedented, widespread economic and societal chaos. The Brazorian Revolutionary War broke out in 1931, which prompted intervention from the neighbouring United Commonwealth the next year, culminating in the outbreak of the North American front of Great War I. By 1935, the last vestiges of the pre-Revolutionary government were either destroyed or fled to Sierra, cementing the status of the newly formed Marxist-Landonist government. Brazoria played a minor role in Great War II, as its socioeconomic and political trends following the Revolution have honed in on internal development and a commitment to conflict avoidance, especially in light of the Capitalist-Landonist Cold War.
The economy of Brazoria is considered to be a developed socialist economy with a moderately high standard of living. Economic activity is driven by the individual Trade unions of Brazoria, which cooperate at the highest levels with the Directorate of Development and Exchange. Although historically a continental centre of commercial exchange, the modern Brazorian economy is highly protectionist. Day-to-day consumer exchanges have been isolated from transnational economic enterprises, with the latter being the sole jurisdiction of the Directorate of Foreign Commerce. The consumer market even uses its own internal currency, the Brazorian dollar, while international enterprise is carried out with the transfer of commodity money, namely, the Brazorian exchange penny. Brazorian economic policies since the Revolution have tended towards self-sufficiency. International trade takes place primarily with the United Commonwealth, and only a small number of non-Landonist countries have economic arrangements with Brazoria.
Brazoria is closely aligned with the neighboring United Commonwealth, with which it shares deep political, economic, and cultural ties. Since the Brazorian Revolution, the United Commonwealth has guaranteed the independence of Brazoria from other regional powers' influence, Sierra and Superior in particular. Although Brazoria maintains an official policy of amicable neutrality with its non-Landonist neighbors, relations with these countries is best described as tenuous. Brazoria is a member of the League of Nations, OMEAD, and the Chattanooga Pact.
Etymology[edit | edit source]
The word Brazoria comes from a combination of the word Brazos, a river of certain importance to the history of the country, and the Latin suffix -ia, meaning land or country. The previous official name Republic of Brazoria was adopted alongside the Constitution in 1848, when before the nation had been known as the Republic of Texas. This earlier name for the country, Texas, stems from a Caddo word meaning friendship that was translated as Tejas in Spanish. The name Texas is still sometimes used to refer to the country in a poetic manner, especially significant as a cultural image of Old Western frontiers and revolutionary spirit. The name Texas was ultimately not adopted by the government due to its association with foreign colonial rule, as early political goals were based on a desire to differentiate Brazoria from its colonial heritage.
The current official name is the Brazorian Confederation, which was adopted with the 1947 Constitution. The framers of the 1937 Constitutional Convention wished to distance the new political order from that of the previous bourgeoisie democracy, hoping to reflect the deep political shift occurring through the Brazorian Revolution. With the empowering of local cantonal councils and the restructuring of the national government away from centralized authority, the political title confederation was deemed an appropriate representation of the new order.
Geography[edit | edit source]
Modern Brazorian borders are derived in part from the Adams-Onis Treaty of 1819, which defined the Sabine River as the eastern boundary of the country. The southeastern boundary of the country is lined by the Gulf of Mexico. The Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo defined all of the country's southern and most of the western border as the Rio Grande. The northwestern border line follows a series of mountains in the Rockies until it reaches the 41st parallel north, where it continues until the longitudinal line of 102.05 degrees west of the Prime Meridian. The border then follows down this longitude until it reaches the 37th parallel north; the 37th is followed for about 769.3 kilometres before terminating near the 95th meridian west. A specific line was drawn with the United Commonwealth at the end of the War of Contingency, which followed down until the Red River. The border continues only for a short distance along the Red River, then follows down the border drawn in 1819 back to the Sabine River.
Brazoria has a great deal of climatic and topographic diversity that can be generally grouped into four major types: the praries of the Great Plains and associated regions, the subtropical Piney Woods in the far east, the arid and semiarid hills and deserts of the west-central portion of the country, and the various alpine climates of the Rocky Mountains and associated ranges. Brazoria's largest geographic divisions largely follow this pattern of environmental division, and the large, five regions are typically as such: the Eastern Pinewoods, the Heartlands, the Western Drylands, the Northern Praries, and the Northwestern Ranges.
Brazoria's large size and geographic diversity are both primary factors contributing to the diversity of its climate. Climate patterns are generally the same in each of the respective regions which compose the country. The Eastern Pinewoods experience a great deal of summer heat and humidity, with winters only differing from the longer summer season in terms of temperature. The interior Heartlands enjoy a more temperate continental climate in comparison with the Eastern Pinewoods due to the significant difference in humidity, but the coastal Heartlands are just as humid as that region. The Gulf Coast of Brazoria is prone to hurricanes in the summer and fall seasons, with some of the most significant hurricanes to hit the region in recent years including Hurricane Ike in 2011 and Hurricane Harvey in 2017. The Western Drylands, excluding the small coastal area technically a part of the region, is the dryest region of the country, with some parts of the region only receiving less than 300mm of percipitation every year. Droughts can be expectionally devastating to the interior of Brazoria, especially so in areas where precipitation is already very low. The Northern Praries and Northwestern Ranges are the only parts of Brazoria which receive snow in the winter times, given their more northern geographic positions. The Northern Praries are particularly prone to tornadoes due to the region's topographical continuity, and these tornadoes often reach EF5 classification, the most severe on the scale.
History[edit | edit source]
Pre-Columbian period[edit | edit source]
The lands now making up Brazoria were originally inhabited by various bands of Native American peoples who arrived over the Bering Land Bridge approximately 20000 years ago. While the vast majority of the native peoples in the pre-Columbian period were related to the Bering-originated Clovis and Folsom cultures, the Pueblo cultures in the far west of the country are derived from the southern Uto-Aztecan peoples. The most eminent tribe in the region shortly before the arrival of Europeans was the Comanche, who spread out across a vast part of the plains making up the modern-day northern part of Brazoria. The Comanche held hegemonic power over the other peoples of the region in an area known as Comancheria by the time the Spanish arrived in 1526.
Early colonial period[edit | edit source]
The first Europeans to explore the lands now composing Brazoria were Spanish conquistadors, the first of such being under an expedition originally led by Pánfilo de Narváez in 1526. Narváez did survive the journey, but one of the men of the expedition was Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, who became responsible for the first identifications of the tribes and landscape of the region which became known as Texas. This original expedition was followed by that of Francisco Vázquez de Coronado, who searched the western and central parts of Texas in order to find the fabled Seven Cities of Gold in 1540. Although these explorers laid claimed to all the of lands of the region for Spain, the area was largely ignored by early Spanish colonial authorities and settlers.
The first challenge to Spanish control over the region transpired in 1684, when a group of French settlers led by René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle settled at Fort Saint Louis near Matagorda Bay, despite originally intending to settle at the mouth of the Mississippi River. While the fort was destroyed by disease and native attacks as soon as 1689, the Spanish would see the settlement as the sign of encroaching French interests into what they had claimed as Spanish territory, and began to fund expeditions and missionary settlements throughout the region, also returning to the territory of the Pueblo indians from which they had been ousted. Alonso de León founded the first Spanish mission in the more eastern part of the Texas region, near present day San Antonio in 1690. The mission was at first unsuccessful, with the priests leaving after a year, and after twenty years of Spanish disinterest in the area, Spain would only sponsor further eastward settlement when the missionary Francisco Hidalgo threatened to ask for French help in building new settlements in 1711. The second Spanish settlement composed of mostly civilians was San Antonio, serving as a way station for new immigrants heading towards different parts of Texas.
The War of the Quadruple Alliance in 1718 saw brief tensions between the French and the Spanish in eastern Texas, but overall, no blood would be shed in Texan boundaries. The Spanish fought with the Lipan Apache in 1746 due to Spanish ties with the Hasinai, but later, in 1749, negotiated a peace with the Apache that angered the larger Comanche tribal confederacy. Although preoccupied with the Comanche in the north, the end of the Seven Years' War saw the leave of the French from the eastern reaches of Texas in 1763. The Spanish government ordered a relocation of many settlers to San Antonio in order to consolidate Spanish civilians and free the troops guarding them for dedication towards conflicts in the north, but many ignored Spanish commands and remained in the east, and instead, founded the town of Nacogdoches around an older mission in the area. The raids from the north came to an end when, in 1785, the Comanche agreed to a peace treaty, and soon after, a lasting alliance was forged between the Comanche and the Spanish colonial authorities.
Captaincy General period[edit | edit source]
The Captaincy General of Texas was created by the Spanish Viceroy Manuel Antonio Flórez in 1787, separating it from the Provincias Internas and affording Texas a greater deal of autonomous control. The growth of the towns of San Antonio and Nacogdoches, continued attacks by Comanche raiders, and it's geographic distance from the administrative center of the Viceroyalty all contributed to the creation of the new, local colonial government. Ricardo Mattias Alfonso was appointed as the first Captain General of Texas, and Alfonso took it upon himself to oversee the growth of the region by increasing immigration from outside the empire. As many Spanish subjects were unwilling to migrate to the edge of the Empire, Alfonso permitted foreigners to settle in Texas, granting the first English-speaking settlers the right to settle in areas around San Antonio, Nacogdoches, and the newly established port at Matagorda. By 1790, native raids on Spanish settlements came to an end with Comanche assistance, and in 1793, the mission at San Antonio was secularized and became a fort. The increasing stability of the region saw a rise in the number of overall settlers coming to the area, although almost none of the new arrivals were Spanish-speaking.
The first Czechs and Germans arrived in Texas from the Lands of the Bohemian Crown in 1795, many of them secretly Hussites seeking to escape the persecution of their faith in their Roman Catholic-dominated homelands. These Hussites established the community of New Tabor that same year, as while nominally Catholic, their linguistic isolation from the English and Spanish-speaking majority of settlers in the region proved effective in hiding their true faith from colonial administrators. Further, the growing number of Protestant settlers in the area saw the lessening of religious restrictions in the region, as enforcing such policies only proved to stem the flow of immigrants to the area. Within only thirteen years as a Captaincy General, the population of Texas had quadrupled from just under 3,000 in 1790 to almost 12,500 by 1800. The majority of this population growth was made up of English-speaking settlers in the areas surrounding San Antonio, Nacodoches, and Matagorda, while a smaller minority were the Czech-German Hussites centered in the town of New Tabor. Political concerns in mainland Spain saw a significant decline in colonial oversight, and Charles IV of Spain extended the term of Captain General Alfonso indefinitely, despite protests from then-Viceroy of New Spain Miguel José de Azanza.
In 1799, Spain returned Louisiana to France, but neither properly defined the border between Louisiana and Texas, and as a result the Louisiana Purchase would lead to a border dispute between the United States and Spain. The dispute continued until 1819, when the Adams–Onís Treaty was agreed upon by the two countries, which defined the Sabine River as the Spanish-American border. While Spain retained de jure control of New Spain following the 1808 transfer of power to Joseph Bonaparte, their colonial empire as a whole began to fall into disorder. The lack of administrative oversight in New Spain during the Peninsular War only encouraged the intendant government of Texas to become even bolder in its attempts to bring foreign settlers to the territory. If the Spanish colonial authority were to assume power once more, the entirety of the new, English-speaking population of Texas would have been expelled, but almost all regional power was vested at the time in the local administration of the intendancy, which only encouraged further settlement by these English-speakers.
The small population of the territory was completely isolated from the Mexican War for Independence, and there exist no real support for either side on the conflict among the local populace and in the local government. The territory would continue to be overlooked by the changing authorities of the times, as the Spanish were slowly losing control of New Spain to Mexican rebels, and the strategic value of Texas at the time was low. There would be no serious attempt to establish any real control over the intendancy until the Mexican victory in 1821, when the Mexican government merged the intendant government with that of a neighboring territory, a move that was intended to curb Texan influence in government, and was subsequently met with extreme resistance from the locals.
Revolutionary period[edit | edit source]
After the independence of Mexico, Texas was made a part of the province of Coahuila y Tejas in 1824, and although the region could opt to become its own state when the Mexican central government deemed such an action feasible, locals within Texas were skeptical at best at the possibility of this actually coming to pass. The same year, the new government implemented the General Colonization Law, allowing for foreigners to settle in Mexico without hindrance in order to bolster immigration and population, especially in the more sparsely populated areas of the nation as to bolster self defense from constant Comanche raids, which had flared in reaction to the loss of Spanish authority in the region.
The Mexican government aimed to continue heavy colonization by attracting settlers from the United States. While there was still a general feeling of resentment towards the Mexican government among locals, the provincial government used the opportunity of support from the central government to begin granting huge parcels of land to prospective new settlers. The first such empresarial grant was given to Moses Austin, whose son, Stephen Austin, commonly considered to be the Father of Brazoria, followed through with his father's plans and brought three thousand families to settle in Texas along the Brazos River. Twenty-three other empresarios would bring tens of thousands of settlers to the territory. The vast numbers of immigrants surprised the Mexicans, who did not expect such a multitude to flock into Texas. Wanting to avoid the complete conversion of northern Mexico into English-speaking regions, Anastasio Bustamante, then President of Mexico, outlawed any further immigration from the United States in 1830, and furthermore, he implemented stricter tax and custom laws, whose enforcement was made possible by the construction of many new presidios in the territory. These measures, which many immigrants considered reactionary, led to widespread civil unrest in Texas, with one notable revolt, the Anahuac Disturbances, becoming the prelude to outright rebellion against Mexican rule in 1832. Mexican troops would flee Texas after the Nacogdoches Revolt that same year, and at the Convention of 1832, many Texans, both older Spanish-speakers and newer English-speakers alike, demanded that Mexico grant Texas provincial autonomy. Stephen Austin was sent to Mexico City to negotiate with the Mexicans in 1833, but he was jailed on arrival and held on suspicion of treason. When Antonio López de Santa Anna began reforms aimed at centralizing the Mexican state and abolishing regional autonomy, local authorities in Texas ended attempts at negotiations and called for an armed revolt against Mexican tyranny, signaling the beginning of the Brazos Revolution in 1835.
The first full-scale, armed action against Mexican authorities took place at the Battle of Gonzales, which is considered the first engagement of the actual revolution. On March 2nd, 1836, representatives at Washington-on-the-Brazos declared the Brazos Compact of 1836, which established the Republic of Texas with David G. Burnet as its first Chancellor. The compact to establish a new nation was given justification by the rebels in that the Mexican government had failed in its promise to preserve their security from native raids which the colonists had enjoyed in Pre-Revolutionary times, and that the Mexican government had violated the federal pact preserving the rights of the individual states of Mexico which had existed during the time of their initial arrival Texas. After the decree, many colonists mistakenly believed the war was over and left the Army of the Brazos to return to their homes. The soldiers left with the local authorities were mostly filibusters from the United States, and because of this, the Mexican congress clarified that any foreign-born peoples fighting against the federal government was to be executed, declaring it would not take prisoners of war.
President Antonio López de Santa Anna personally led 6,000 troops north to quell the revolutionaries, leading the bulk to besiege the Alamo Mission in San Antonio. General Jose de Urrea led a contingent of soldiers up the coastline under orders from Santa Anna, a move which culminated in the Goliad Massacre, where 300 revolutionaries were executed. After a thirteen-day siege, Santa Ana was victorious in overwhelming and annihilating the near 200 defenders of the Alamo, all of whom were either killed in the fighting or executed afterwards. News of Mexican brutality and defeats for the rebels influenced the Runaway Scrape, in which many settlers fled to the east, with most rejoining the Brazos Army and some returning to the United States. After several weeks of maneuvering through the countryside, the revolutionaries were able to catch the Mexican Army off guard in the Battle of San Jacinto, capturing Santa Ana and forcing him to sign the Treaties of Puerto Velasco, which effectively ended the war. The Mexican government, however, would continue to refuse to recognize the independence of Texas, never formally ratifying the treaties in its own legislature.
Old Republic period[edit | edit source]
The newly founded Republic was first based out of Washington-on-the-Brazos, but the capital was later moved to Houston in 1837 and then finally to Austin in 1839, where it remains today. The first elected Chancellor of the National Council was Sam Houston, who at first pursued a foreign policy which sought to build a strong relationship, geared towards eventual annexation, with the neighboring United States. Although Houston's efforts were largely unsuccessful cementing an outright deal of annexation, he began a lasting policy of openness towards Anglo-American neighbors. In 1838, with the election of the nationalist Mirabeau Lamar, the political effort seeking eventual annexation by the United States was ended, and instead, the primary foreign policy goal of Lamar became the realization of Texan territorial claims against Mexico. Lamar also authorized the beginning of nationally-operated universal education and formalized a standing army. Lamar organised the Santa Fe Expedition in 1841, the success of which saw the rise of Texan power in New Mexico, much to the detestation of the Mexican government.
In 1841, popular nationalist Garrett Langley was elected Chancellor, and unlike Houston and Lamar, Langley viewed the United States as a potentially useful ally for its powerful army, near location, and strong cultural similarities with Brazos settlers. Hence, Langley arranged a diplomatic campaign which culminated with the Treaty of Nacogdoches in 1845, in which the United States vowed to come to the defense of Texas if its territorial sovereignty was threatened, and in exchange, merchants and colonists from the United States would be given very favorable tariff breaks and land grants respectively. Though the American federal government ideally wished to annex Texas, the domestic implications of expanding slavery and the United Kingdom's support of Texas prevented an outright occupation of the country. This arrangement infuriated Mexico, as the territory of Texas as recognized by the United States thereafter included the disputed lands to the north of the Rio Grande. When a contingent of American-Texan troops moved into a defensive position south of the Nueces River in 1846, the Mexicans responded by sending their own defense force, and the two eventually met in what became known as the Thornton Affair, causing the outbreak of the Mexican-American War.
Texas launched its own New Mexico Campaign with professional soldiers and American volunteers in the summer of 1846, which won a swift series of victory and eventually opened western routes into the rebelling California Republic by that same November. The Republic thereafter became a staging point for an American invasion of Mexico, and two years later, after intense and bloody fighting in the Mexican homeland, Mexico surrendered at the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo. The treaty caused the formal recognition of Texan sovereignty by the Mexicans, the establishment of American military installations in Mexico, and the allowance of the independence of neighboring California, which was to later become Sierra. Following the surrender of Mexico, and the realization of its formal, internationally-guaranteed territorial sovereignty, a series of constitutional conventions in Austin were held in order to establish a more democratic and easily expandable form of government, which resulted in proclamation of the Constitution; a document that established the modern system of administration through the Chancellor and Diet, and which officially renamed the Republic of Texas as the contemporary Republic of Brazoria.
Gilded period[edit | edit source]
In the time after the end of the Mexican-American War, Brazoria's economy grew rapidly as immigrants from Central Europe poured into the countryside, many of whom were German revolutionaries escaping the after effects of the Revolutions of 1848. Through organizations such as the Adelsverein, hundreds of thousands of immigrants came to Brazoria, settling across the plains in the central, northern, and western reaches of the Republic. Germans would continue to be the largest immigrant group to Brazoria until the very end of the 19th century. British, French, Czech and other Europeans also made up considerable portions of the new immigrants to the country, many of whom came for the very same reasons as the Germans before them. The ability to become a citizen of the Republic was made easy for all new immigrants to the country, and immigration processing centers in Galveston and Corpus Christi were expanded multiple times throughout the 19th century to handle the constantly increasing flow of people entering the country from overseas.
As large numbers of immigrants began to settle in the New Mexico territory, ambiguity between Brazoria and Sierra over what defined the border between the two countries caused into skirmishes along the Rio Grande. Brazorian settlers would attempt to cross the river and were often intercepted by Sierran military police. One Brazorian settler group refused to return to the east side of the river, and their fire against Sierran border guards resulted in the Massacre of San Jaun Crossing, triggering the New Mexico Crisis of 1861. Large scale hostilities were avoided after diplomats between the two parties agreed to the Treaty of Santa Fe, which set the Rio Grande as the official border between the two nations. Another result of the increased settlement of the western reaches was an increasing amount of violent confrontations between local indigenous bands and newly arriving immigrant populations, a prolonged period of tension known as the Long Defeat, beginning in 1853 with the Battle of Canadian Creek and ending in 1904 with the Indian Act.
The American Civil War benefited Brazoria greatly as it became a necessary middle ground for trade between Confederate States of America and the outside world, due to a heavy Union blockade of the Confederacy in place for a large part of the war. Many Southerners began settling in Brazoria's eastern provinces of Neches and Sabine as the imminent defeat of the Confederate States grew more apparent. Although the South had been militarily defeated, the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and nearly all other high ranking officials of the Union's presidential administration by Confederate agents resulted in the withdrawal of the Union army from the South and the fracturing of the United States into several smaller nations in the War of Contingency. Brazoria would join Sierra to successfully halt the advance of the United Commonwealth and preserve the independence of the newly-founded countries across the continent. With the near-complete collapse of the United States, the continued influx of new European and Southern Anglo-American immigrants, and the economic phenomenon of the Second Industrial Revolution, Brazoria quickly became one of the leading independent nations in North America.
Relaxed urban planning restrictions and low taxes, alongside a favorable central location on the continent, Brazoria became the center of the many railroads which connected the east and west coasts. These railroads would allow for the better utilization of the Republic's natural agricultural bounty, further amplifying the regional economic importance of the nation. The plantations founded by the ex-Southerners in the eastern provinces increased this agricultural productivity four-fold. However, by 1885 a shift from agriculture to industry became very pronounced, as shipping, shipbuilding, and industrial and consumer goods manufacturing became core sectors of the economy. The massive economic growth in the few decades following the War of Contingency saw most of its profits in the control of a few monopolisitic companies. Although the growing middle class exercised some political sway in the transition of the Whig Party to the Progressive Party, most politicians remained firmly opposed to major economic reform.
Later Gilded period[edit | edit source]
With the growth of Progressive Party among middle class residents of major urban centers, many in the elite of the National Party worried of the spreading Landonist sentiments in the lowest classes of Brazorians. As inequality had reached record highs and minor strikes had become more common in the last decades of the 19th century, a group of populist National Party elites split from the party to established the National Reform Party. National Reform and its leader Jim Hogg synthesized middle class concerns with populist messaging that aimed to draw support from lower strata of Brazorian society. In the 1898 elections, National Reform swept into power, completely eradicating the original National Party and even taking some of the Progressive Party's first footholds in the House of Representatives.
Jim Hogg aggressively reformed most functionary offices and departments of the government. Under his leadership, progressively minded middle class voters were wooed by his promise to end slavery, which he fulfilled in 1899. Although he had achieved significant popularity with many rural Brazorians in the east for his anti-immigrant rhetoric, he failed to ebb the growing Landonist movement within industrial worker's unions. The Anti-Landonist Union Act sought to outlaw the largest Landonist union in Brazoria at the time, the Landonist Labor Union of Brazorian. Hogg's presidency coincided with the Spindletop Gusher of 1901, with the following oil boom catapulting Brazoria into becoming the world's largest oil producer. Hogg's popularity would not last his entire presidency however, as middle class Brazorians began to feel a familiar feeling of isolation from federal politics due to the perceived continued enrichment of Brazoria's already wealthy and their scope of political influence.
Likewise, the petroleum industry quickly found itself consolidated in an oligopoly of three major companies: the Humble Oil Company, the Gulf Standard Oil Company, and the Valpetrol Company. These companies would often buy out any well which had been struck by an independent wildcatter, often times at values which appeared high to the purchasers, but which in reality were extremely under-value. The 1910 elections were subsequently devastating for the National Reform Party, as many middle class voters defected back to the Progressives, and a rising number of lower class Brazorians began supporting the Marxist-Landonist Democratic Worker's Party, which had arisen in the wake of the Anti-Landonist policies of the previous government. By the time of the 1914 elections, Jim Hogg had reached the maximum three terms of Presidency he was forced to step down as National Reform's nominee. The 1914 elections were the party's worst performance in their existence, seeing the rise of the first President from the Progressive Party, journalist and publisher William P. Hobby, and the entrance of the Democratic Worker's Party into the House of Representatives.
William Hobby's administration put a high priority on addressing the root of social and economic inequalities, which he feared would continue to worsen and eventually result in mass political instability. The first anti-trust legislation in Brazoria was passed within a hundred days of Hobby's presidency beginning. As Hobby moved to break up the petroleum oligopoly through enforcement of the legislation, a provincial court judge in Sabine Province stayed the enforcement of the law, and the case eventually moved to the Supreme Court. There, it was ruled that the law was unconstitutional in overstepping the bounded powers of the national government. The loss at the Supreme Court invalidated the anti-trust laws, resulting in a series of nationwide protests against the Supreme Court decision, especially among middle and lower class citizens. The DWP continued to make strong gains in industrial, urban areas, and it even began to amass support among the majority black and latino communities at the edges of the country. Despite the gains of the DWP, most of the middle class had remained staunchly in support of the Progressive Party, which went on to enact a series of politically liberalizing reforms that saw the enactment of universal and women's suffrage in 1919 and the election of Brazoria's first female President Miriam A. Ferguson in the 1924 elections.
The high growth in volume of exports experienced in the wake of the Continental Revolutionary War only compounded the original strength of the economy which had been bolstered by the discovery of oil two decades earlier. The decade of the 1920s was extremely prosperous for both the middle and upper classes of the country, and many people began to buy in to the burgeoning stock markets to expand their personal fortunes. The rapid pace at which people loaned money and invested it in stocks caused an eventual price bubble, and when the bubble popped in 1929 on Black Tuesday, the nation's entire banking system collapsed as lenders saw mass defaults from nearly everyone who had made investments financed by loans. President Ferguson's inability to cope with the development of the Great Depression cost her party dearly in the 1932 elections, where National Republican candidate Ross Sterling beat her by an extremely narrow margin of votes. Sterlings early attempts to resolve the growing economic crisis were met with complete failure, and the development of the Dust Bowl crisis only further worsened the effects of the Depression on the rural populations throughout the country.
The 1936 elections saw support for the National Reform Party crumble a second time, after which the party would be reorganized as the more populist-oriented Ranchers & Riggers Party. After a contentious run-off election boycotted by the Democratic Worker's Party, John Nance Garner of the Progressive Party won the presidency, seeking to overcome the tripartite split in the House of Representatives, which was almost evenly balanced between the conservative-populist Ranchers & Riggers Party, typified by its wealthy and rural poor voter base, the Marxist-Landonist Democratic Worker's Party, consisting of mainly ethnic minorities, industrial urban laborers and some rural support, and the social liberal Progressive Party, which was comprised mostly of Brazoria's middle class voters. President Garner introduced a series of legislation packages in Congress that aimed at finding support from more moderate members of both the R&RP as well as the DWP. Namely, Garner proposed a tightening of border controls for economic and social purposes in a bid to increase domestic production desirability while also organizing financially ruined factories into alleviating the shortage of consumer goods that would induce. Domestically produced agricultural goods would be financially incentivized as well, with Garner hoping to prevent a collapse in the agricultural surplus the country had enjoyed for all of its history.
Landonist revolutionary period[edit | edit source]
At the 1940 elections, there was once again significant controversy at the initial ballot results. Of the three major parties' candidates, the R&RP's candidate, Daniel O'Leary only won 32.2% of the vote, President Garner of the Progressives won 34.5%, and the DWP's candidate John Kars won 33.3%. According to Brazoria's 1848 constitution, a run off election would be necessary, as no one candidate crossed the majority threshold for the presidency. Despite only possessing a 1.1% lead over O'Leary, Kars of the DWP was chosen for the run off election, causing unrest in the R&RP strongholds in the east and north-central provinces of the country. In the run-off, many former R&RP voters opted for a continuation of President Garner's administration, with the Progressive winning the election at 64.9% of the vote. The alignment of the R&RP and Progressives would be short-lived, however, as Garner's administration was fraught with impediments in Congress from both the R&RP and the DWP. A series of prolonged strikes led by the LLUB and the DWP would cripple Garner's efforts to revitalize Brazorian domestic industries, while more radically right-wing R&RP elements in the Congress prevented any full co-operation between the two Non-Landonist parties. The paralysis in Congress strengthened organizations which sought to directly alleviate the prolonged suffering of the Great Depression, namely the Brazorian United Landonist Relief Front and the rising right-wing populist Concernced Citizens League.
After two years of political uncertainty and growing popular discontent, the United Commonwealth invaded Brazoria on April 11th, 1942, as neighboring ally Sierra mobilized for a Pacific-oriented campaign in the First Great War. Marxist-Landonist, Socialist, and Continentalists organizations in Brazoria comprised a significant amount of the popular relief agencies and political organizational structures of the Brazorian left, and when news of the Continental invasion broke, John Kars and the entirety of the DWP delegation to Congress fled from Austin and declared the beginning of the Brazorian Revolution and the Brazorian Revolutionary War. The outdated and largely unorganized Brazorian Army was entirely unprepared for a land invasion from the United Commonwealth, quickly losing control of the situation and retreating for a prepared defence of the government in Austin. As Continental forces advanced on the major metropolitan centers at Houston, Dallas, and Oklahoma City, massive civilian caravans of non-Landonist individuals attempted to flee, with one such caravan causing several human stampede deaths at the train station in Katy on the western fringes of Houston.
With the backing of the United Commonwealth, industrial centers in Houston and Dallas were militarized, and the lucrative East Brazoria oilfields became critical in the steady supply of Continental mobilized forces. While Revolutionary militias mobilized in the eastern metropolises, the Brazorian Army entrenched itself in the central Hill Country and the fringe mountains of the Rockies throughout the western and northern portions of the country. The relatively quick collapse of Brazoria's eastern border was not reflective of the conflict as a whole, which was essentially in a stalemate for most of 1942 as both sides of the Brazorian conflict entrenched themselves and massively scaled up militarization. Sierra sent limited support to the Brazorian Army, instead focusing on reinforcing its still-standing allies in Superior and on maintaining its Pacific Front. The contrast between the civilian living conditions of divided Brazoria was stark: in the east, civilians received a large supply of rations, as the amount that had fled west away from the front lines meant that Continental rations were overestimated in quantity. The already poorly supplied Brazorian Army, on the other hand, could hardly supply its own forces with sufficient material, let alone the civilian and refugee population. Within five months, eastern Brazoria began organizing formal units of its own Crimson Army, with a mix of UC and domestically supplied materials, while the Brazorian Army continued to suffer from extensive equipment shortages.
By 1943, the Crimson Army began to advance towards the west, putting significant pressure especially on the heavily fortified Hill Country region. Fighting was fierce throughout the region as combined Continental and Crimson brigades slowly pushed from the north and south of the line. After a steady three month advance, Landonist forces surrounded the capital Austin, cutting off the Colorado River corridor that had kept the capital connected with the defensive positions in the west. The government of President John Nance Garner evacuated, and many Brazorian Army soldiers deserted their posts and defected to the advancing Landonist line. The President and many of his closest advisers were captured on the western road, by which they were attempting to reach El Paso and possibly Sierran territory. While President Garner eventually succumbed to Landonist demands of full surrender and issued the order on August 9th, 1943, the remaining pockets of Brazorian Army forces along the Rio Grande and concentrated in Pecos, Ute, and Arapaho Provinces refused to acknowledge the surrender, vowing to fight until either Brazoria was freed or they were killed trying to do just that.
Landonist forces in Brazoria picked up the pace of their advances against an increasingly exhausted enemy force through the later part of 1943 and the earliest months of 1944, reaching Valle de las Palmas in February and El Paso in April. While the remaining generals in the Brazorian Army called on Sierra for aide in the face of imminent defeat, Sierra had utilized the slow burning buffer of the Brazorian front to significantly reinforce its positions in Superior and western Mexico, with the former front even seeing significant gains against Continentalist forces towards the industrial and political heart of that country in Chicago. East Albuquerque was put under siege by Landonist forces in May 1944, and similarly forces in the central part of Brazoria managed to advance to Denver by June.
Early contemporary period[edit | edit source]
Contemporary period[edit | edit source]
Politics[edit | edit source]
Brazoria is a confederation, with 13 strongly-empowered Regions serving as the most basic unit of administration in the country. As per the 1937 Constitution, these Regions are charged with the administration of education, emergency services, healthcare, housing, law enforcement, urban and rural planning, and local transportation. The Confederation Government is responsible in the coordination of development and services between Regions, with all powers not specifically granted to the Regions in the Constitution being held in reserve by the Confederation Government. The Confederation Government is itself split into two distinct branches: the Legislative and the Judicial, with the former embodied by the Confederation Congress and the latter by the Circuit and Supreme Courts.
Government[edit | edit source]
Chancellor since 2020
Vice Chancellor since 2020
The Confederation Congress is the bicameral legislature of Brazoria. It serves as the primary organ of the Legislative branch, and it is through the Confederation Congress that the Confederation Government is composed and confirmed. The Confederation Congress is made up of a lower house, the Diet, and an upper house, the Executive Council. Members of the Diet are elected from a pool of nominees offered to the individual Regional Councils by popular referendum during national elections. Each Region is allotted a certain number of Diet seats based on respective Census data, with the pool of nominees often numbering between two to five times the number of seats allotted to a region. Most Regional Councils then vote to determine which nominees are sent to the Diet, although a handful of regions use varying selection methods. The Diet is then responsible from electing within itself the members of the Executive Council, the upper house of the Confederation Congress.
It is from the Executive Council that the Chancellor and the Vice Chancellor are elected for their four year terms, concurrent with the terms of the Confederation Congress. The Chancellor is typically the leader of the largest party in the Diet and Executive Council, while the Vice Chancellor is often the leader of the second-largest. Both are responsible for co-operatively nominating the various leaders of the Directorates and Executive Agencies, who are then confirmed by the Executive Council after a series of individual hearings. Collectively, the Chancellor, Vice Chancellor, Directors, and Agency Chiefs make up what is considered to be the Executive branch of the Confederation Government, responsible for coordinating national policy on matters of state and affairs that reach beyond individual cantons. Like the Chancellor and Vice Chancellor, the Directors and Agency Chiefs serve terms concurrent with that of the Confederation Congress.
The other primary branch of the Confederation Government is the Judiciary, which is made up of the Circuit Courts and the Supreme Court. Unlike the Confederation Congress and its associated positions, members of the Judiciary are not elected, but rather appointed by the mandatorily apolitical Commission for Judicial Allotments and Merits. The Commission is a body elected on a per-Region basis by active members of the Confederation Bar, which presently numbers just over 95,000 individuals. Unlike the democratic nature of the Legislative branch, the Judicial branch is intentionally organized to be meritocratic. Any individual who completes their Juris Doctor and passes an examination is admitted into the Confederation Bar, and from within the Bar, any individual can be nominated for election to the Commission of Judicial Allotments and Merits within their Region by securing ten recommendations from fellow Bar members. Every member of the Confederation Bar within a Region can then vote on the nominated Candidates, who biannually assemble in the capital Austin to fill any vacant Circuit and Supreme Court positions. Appointment to these positions by the Commission is lifelong, although Justices are allowed to resign at will. The Supreme Court is the only court in the country with more than one Justice, with the longest-serving Justice earning the title of President Justice.
Law and justice[edit | edit source]
The Brazorian justice system is a common law legal system. Precedence serves as the principle framework through which criminal and civil cases are decided. Brazorian courts are organized into five distinct levels of jurisdiction: county courts, provincial appeals courts, provincial supreme courts, federal Appellate Circuit Courts, and the federal Supreme Court. The most basic level of courts, and the courts which process the vast majority of legal filings in Brazoria, are the county-level courts. As each province is at liberty to organize their justice systems at will, there is some variation in this order: for example, appeals in El Paso are made directly from basic court rulings to the provincial supreme court. Most provinces, however, choose to divide between county, provincial appeals, and provincial supreme. Some provincial court judges are appointed, while others are elected. Most county courts have their judges elected by county constituents.
Law enforcement in Brazoria is mostly carried out at a municipal level. Counties have sheriff's offices which often intersect and coordinate with incorporated city police departments at the lowest level. Most Metropolitan Provinces have merged their county and city level police services into a single law enforcement agency, while non-metropolitan provinces typically retain a county-city distinction. Nearly all provinces also maintain a separate provincial trooper department, which has special jurisdiction for the entire province and typically serves to enforce laws in areas where local jurisdiction might be ambiguous. Further, provincial trooper services help coordinate between different local police or sheriff's departments in major legal cases. At the federal level, there is a wider degree of variation between bureaus relating to the Department of Justice and the Department of Public Safety. The Brazorian Federal Marshal Service acts as the sole law enforcement agency of the Department of Justice; the Marshals are responsible for the enforcement of court rulings and serve a multipurpose role of national law enforcement coordination between the local and federal law enforcement agencies. The Major Investigations Bureau, the Drugs and Firearms Enforcement Bureau, the Signals and Cybersecurity Bureau, and the Federal Frontier Security Bureau are all offices of the Department of Public Safety, with each serving a more specific role in relation to federal law enforcement areas.
Administrative divisions[edit | edit source]
Brazoria is divided into 13 regions. In the Brazorian confederal system, regions have a high degree of independence from the Confederation Government, which each region holding permanent status in the 1947 Constitution. As represented in the Confederation Congress, all regions are given a portion of seats in the Diet proportional to their total population. Within the regions, Regional Councils serve as the central political organ, and it is from within these Regional Councils that the Region's Intendant is elected and the local government formed. As per the 1947 Constitution, Brazorian regions are charged with the administration of education, healthcare, law enforcement, transportation, and socioeconomic development within their own boundaries, with the Confederation Government largely limited to an advisory and cooperative role over these regional affairs.
|Province||Flag||Capital||Population (2020 estimate)||Land area (km2)|
Diplomacy and defence[edit | edit source]
Brazoria has a network of 432 diplomatic missions abroad and maintains formal relations with more than 190 countries. Brazoria is a founding member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the League of Nations, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Organization of American States. Brazoria joined the Conference of American States in 1950 and participates in the St. Louis Area. Brazoria maintains a "Special Relationship" with the Kingdom of Sierra; the two are each others closest and oldest allies, having fought together for mutual sovereignty during the Mexican-American War of 1848. Brazoria also maintains particularly warm relationships with other North American states, and in recent years the country has been strengthening its partnerships with developing nations in Latin America and Africa, particularly Chile, Colombia, Panama, and Equatorial Guinea.
The Brazorian Armed Forces are the combined military forces of the nation, charged primarily with the matters of national security and defence. The Armed Forces are divided into four branches and two special services: the Army, the Air Force, the Navy, and the Strategic Forces are the primary service branches, while the Rangers and the Militia are the special services, with the Rangers serving a special operations and high profile security role and the Militia serving as the national military reserve force. Since the early 1960s, the Air Force has received the most funding per capita of soldiers, as the physical distance of Brazoria from any hostile power has made the Army and Navy capable of focusing solely on defense, while the Air Force remains the single part of the Armed Forces with long range, conventional attack capabilities. The Armed Forces maintain a total professional force of 245,157 active service members; 130,050 in the Army, 94,050 in the Air Force, 14,025 in the Navy, 5,007 in the Rangers, and 2,025 in the Strategic Forces. Alongside these professional, active service members, there are an additional 246,178 members of the Militia which stand at varying levels readiness depending on the national DEFREDEL status. Firearm possession in Brazoria is higher than the average of most developed countries, with 42 out of 100 households owning at least one handgun or hunting rifle. Automatic, semi-automatic, and explosive weapons are banned for civilian possession in Brazoria; possession of assault rifles and shotguns is an especially significant criminal charge in the country. Brazoria is a nuclear state with ICBM capacity and was one of the first nations to develop nuclear weapons, doing so alongside Sierra in the early 1940s.
Economy[edit | edit source]
|Nominal GDP||$1.914 trillion (Q4 2017)|
|Real GDP growth||-0.3% (Q1 2018)|
|4.2% (Q4 2017)|
|CPI inflation||2.9% (April 2018)|
|Employment-to-population ratio||47% (April 2018)|
|Unemployment||4% (April 2018)|
|Labor force participation rate||64.9% (April 2018)|
|Total public debt||$1.227 trillion (64.1% of GDP) (Q4 2017)|
|Household net worth||$8.355 trillion (Q4 2017)|
Brazoria has a mixed economy which began to undergo vast industrialisation in the 1870s. The Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, the Second World War, the Cold War, the Space Race, and the Great Recession are all key to the modern interventionist policies which have led Brazoria to develop into one of the world's most comprehensive welfare states. A developed, high-income nation, Brazoria is the 12th largest economy in the world at purchasing power parity, with a total gross domestic product of $2.421 trillion as of 2017. Brazoria is the third largest trading partner of the Conference of American States, with the Port of Houston being the third busiest container port in North America, and overall, the fourth busiest in the world. Brazoria has maintained a trade surplus for the majority of its history, and it has been a leading centre of petroleum and natural gas corporations in both Anglo-America and the world at large since the discovery of oil at Spindletop in 1901.
The BNB is the country's central bank and is responsible for the management of the national currency, the Brazorian dollar. The dollar is the fifth most used reserve currency in the world; the central approach which the government has taken towards investment in many Latin American countries means that the dollar is one of the most commonly used currencies in that region for international trade. The Brazorian dollar has historically been used as an indicator related to the price of oil and the efficiency of the petroleum market, gaining the colloquialism of the "blackback," though in recent years, especially since the 1980s, this term has fallen out of useage due to state-led efforts to increase economic diversity.
Exports considered fundamental to the Brazorian economy include petroleum products, airplanes and related devices, home and computer appliances, heavy machinery, cargo ships, and a variety of automobiles for consumer and governmental purposes. Brazoria is home to largest concentration of oil refineries in the world along the banks of the Houston Ship Channel, and the country was the world's single largest exporter of petroleum products for the first half of the 20th century. Throughout the middle of the 20th century, however, the Brazorian government sponsored initiatives aimed at diversifying the economy, producing an array of aerospace and high technology companies which are some of the largest contributors to national exports in the contemporary period. Strong government regulation of foreign ownership and aggressively selective competition law have contributed to the development of monolithic domestic corporations. In order to prevent human capital flight to more competetive domestic markets in the CAS, the government has partnered with major corporations to provide residencies for top students in the country since 2009.
Brazoria is also a traditional centre of agriculture in North America, most notably in an economic and cultural sense with its long history of ranching. Brazoria is one of the top exporters of cattle and sheep products in Anglo-America, although in recent years government initiatives aimed at creating a more sustainable, ecologically sound socioeconomic order have caused stagnation in the ranching industry. On the other hand, Brazoria has seen a rise in the number of crops grown in the country, and the nation is already the largest exporter of herbs and tree nuts in North America. A large variety of fruits and vegetables are capable of thriving in a number of regions across the country due to high climatic diversity. Recently, a great deal of government-sponsored research has been put into the development of biofuel and bioplastic using agricultural sources in order to help foster a more environmentally sustainable economy.
Energy[edit | edit source]
For the early half of the 20th century, Brazoria was the largest producer and exporter of petroleum and petroleum products in the world. Today, Brazoria is the world's seventh largest producer of petroleum, generating an average of 3.592 million barrels a day in March 2018. Natural gas is the second most plentiful fossil fuel in Brazoria, with proven reserves in the country of over 5.354 trillion cubic metres, making Brazoria the world's eighth largest producer of natural gas. All of the crude oil and natural gas in Brazoria is explored, extracted, and transported by the state-owned petroleum and natural gas corporation Brazoco, which is one of the world's largest producing companies of crude oil and natural gas. Only a third of refineries in the country are owned by Brazoco; the rest are owned and operated by private companies of both Brazorian and international origin. Some of the largest private refiners in Brazoria include ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Statoil, Citgo, Phillips 66, Chevron, and BP. Brazoria has a total of 907,316 kilometres of oil and gas pipelines spread throughout the country. While Brazoria is one of the world's top producers of petroleum, the fuel source is only rarely used as a source of electric power generation, representing only 2.6% of the national energy grid as of 2018. Natural gas, however, makes up 43.9% of the national electricity generation. On the other hand, petroleum derivaties such as gasoline, diesel, and aviation fuel are integral to the Brazorian transportation economy, with over 91.2% of all vehicles operating on some refined version of oil.
Since 2008, governmental interest in the development of renewable energy has resulted in direct action being taken to transition Brazoria into a leader of sustainable development. In the last decade, the output of wind and solar generation plants rivals the output of fossil fuel power plants. While in 2008 wind and solar power only produced 27.4% of all electric generation, today, the combined production of the two amounts to a total figure of 41.1%. The remaining 12.4% of electricity in Brazoria is generated by nuclear power, which has seen minor expansion in recent years. Current governmental projections aim to completely phase out fossil fuel power generation by as early as 2030. Furthermore, a large amount of money has been allocated to the research of more sustainable sources of automotive fuels, namely, in the research of biodiesel and other biofuels.
Transportation[edit | edit source]
Rates of car ownership in Brazoria are some of the highest in the Western world. Around 82% of all commuters travel to work in private automobiles daily. Car ownership is generally on the decline, especially so since 2008, when the national government increased funding for the development of local mass transit networks in some of the largest cities in the country. Major cities with the lowest rates of car ownership are Austin (61%), Denver (66%), Valle de las Palmas (67%), East Albuquerque (69%), and El Paso (71%). There are approximately 1.731 million kilometres of paved roadway in Brazoria. Of these public roadways, 1,154,000 kilometres are paved and 577,000 are unpaved. Around 12,395 kilometres of this paved roadway makes up the National Freeway System, a large controlled-access highway system which links the major population centres around the country. The freeways of Brazoria have speed limits in urban centres, but in rural areas, there are no speed limits on clear days, where speed limits are enforced at night time and in poor weather conditions. A further 120,064 kilometres of paved roadway composes the National Highway System, which supplements the freeways by making connections through smaller settlements. Nearly all goods and services in Brazoria utilise the freeway and highway system at some point. Many Brazorians use the combined highway network to travel to work, and a third of all domestic civilian travel is through the network. Special Provinces have the ability to plan, construct, and maintain their own provincial roadway networks, while in regular provinces, local municipalities are responsible only for the planning and maintenance of roadways. All paved roadways within Brazoria are constructed and maintained by the national Ministry of Transportation.
The most popular form of transportation before the mass construction of the freeways and highways in the 1960s was the railroad. At its peak in 1948, there was a total of 52,304 kilometres of railway track in Brazoria, though as of 2017, the number has declined to only 37,659 kilometres. All railway tracks in Brazoria and owned and managed by the state-owned firm Brazonara. The company received relatively little support throughout the majority of its first three decades of existence. It had been re-incorporated through a merger of its two predecessor, privitised firms Brazorian Western Rail and Brazos Rail in 1981. In 2008, however, renewed interest in the expansion of the railway network saw the construction of new passenger rail lines by the end of 2010. Throughout the last decade, passenger rail travel in Brazoria has undergone something of a renaissance, with strong government subsidisation of ticket costs for young and elderly people in an effort to reduce the prevalence of air travel in the country. Three new high-speed rail networks are planned to be finished with construction by 2027, with the first fully operational segment connecting Houston and Dallas in 2013.
Air travel is operated primarily by private airlines in Brazoria; the flagship airline of the country is Brazorian Continental, while its only major domestic competitor is SunJet. Three of the fifty busiest airports in the world are located in Brazoria, located in Houston, Dallas, and Denver respectively. Brazorian Continental is based out of both Houston and Denver, while SunJet is primarily based out of Dallas; both airlines are two of the largest in North America in terms of passengers carried. There are a total of 617 paved-runway airports in Brazoria; the vast majority of these are single-strip municipal airports which are operated and maintained locally. Only 35 Brazorian airports have daily commercial operations, yet much more than a third of all domestic travel is through air transportation.
Science and technology[edit | edit source]
Brazoria is a world leader in scientific and technological research and development. Since the Second World War, the government of the country has allocated large amounts of financial resources to educational, research, and technological institutes in the nation. The Brazorian University System is the nationally-administered network of publicly funded universities in the country; the flagship campus is located in the capital, the University of Austin, and there are a further three major campuses, located in Houston, Denver, and Dallas. Various private universities and research institutes also exist, with one of the most notable being Zavala University, located in Houston. High expenditures on research grants and tax breaks for major technology firms has led to the development of the Silicon Hills, a science park centered around the capital. Notable technology firms headquartered in Brazoria include Brazos Instruments, WAAS, Dell, Astratus, and Firefly. The Houston Medical Centre is one of the worlds largest medical research centres, and it is one of the leading centres of cancer research in the world.
Brazoria maintains one of the world's most prominent space programmes, and the country has been a regional leader in space exploration since the middle of the 20th century. The Space Race, a period of intense rivalry and competition between Brazorian and Soviet space agencies, was a key factor in the constant expansion of the national space agency, the Commission for Space Exploration, known simply as the CSE. The CSE is an institution integral to Brazorian society, its economy, its culture, and its scientific community. The budget for the CSE has consistently been one of the largest expenditures of the national government; in 2018, the CSE was appropriated $36.7 billion, the highest figure it had received in its history of existence. As of 2018, there are four major programmes which are in various stages at the CSE that have won the agency a degree of international and domestic fame; the Gradivus programme, which aims to put the first humans on the planet Mars by 2030, the Selene programme, which aims to put a human habitat on the Moon by 2025, the Nyx programme, which is currently using a series of probes to intensely study the Asteroid Belt and the planets beyond it, and the Hemera programme, which is investigating the viability of space-based solar power systems. Since 2011, the CSE has been actively investigating a replacement for its old reusable launch system, the Mule II space shuttle.
Duenes Observatory, in Pecos Province, is home to one of the world's largest optical telescopes.
Demographics[edit | edit source]
According to the Commission for the Census, there are an estimated people residing in Brazoria as of July 2017. Of these residents, approximately 40.2 million have full citizenship status, about 90% of the total population, while the remaining 4.3 million is made up of immigrants and other foreign nationals residing long-term in the country. The official Census of 2010 found that the national population was 43,100,394, meaning that between 2010 and 2017, the total population grew by an estimated 1,416,332 in those seven years. This means that Brazoria has an average yearly growth of 202,333 people, which is an annual growth rate of 0.32%. This is one of the lowest growth rates in Anglo-America, and this is mostly attributed to the low natural growth rate of the country. The fertility rate in Brazoria is, likewise, one of the lowest in Anglo-America, at only 1.12 births per woman in 2017. The vast majority of Brazoria's population increases come from immigration; an estimated 9.39 million people were born outside of the country, representing 21.1% of the national population, which is the highest rate of immigrant population in continental Anglo-America. Likewise, Brazoria's 9.39 million immigrants mean that it has the fourth largest number of foreign born residents in the world, after Germany, Russia, and Saudi Arabia.
According to the 2010 Census, there was no single majority race in the country, and instead, there was a plurality of racial groups, with the three largest of these groups, and the only three to each represent over a quarter of the population, being the Anglos at 38% of the population, the Latinos at 29.4%, and the Tejanos at 26.6%. The Anglo-Brazorian racial group, which is composed of all predominantly English-speaking and European-descended peoples in the country, was the majority racial group in the country until the 1960s, when immigration laws were liberalised to allow large-scale immigration from Latin America. The Anglo-Brazorian group is typically divided into its two largest components, British Brazorian and German Brazorian, which collectively make up 89% of all Anglo-Brazorians. The Latino-Brazorian racial group includes all Hispanic people in Brazoria, with some two thirds of the immigrant population of the country self-identifying as Latino. All Latino-Brazorians are either first or second generation immigrants to the country, as the countries with the largest number of immigrant groups to Brazoria include Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and the Dominican Republic. The Tejano ethnic group is a unique multiracial group of the Brazorian population, a fusion of the Anglo and Latino races, which has developed in the country as a minor subset of its racial composition until the 1960s, when mainstream social prejudice against miscegenation began to dwindle dramatically. Since the 1960s, the Tejano population group have seen the fastest rates of growth, and it is estimated that by 2040, Brazoria will have a majority Tejano pooulation. The Afro-Brazorian racial group, made up of mainly the descendants of escaped slaves from the east, makes up 4.1% of the population and is largely concentrated in the eastern part of the country. The Cajun people are a small ethnic group located in near-entirety in the Magdalen Autonomous Province; they are predominantly descended from the early settlers of Acadia, who were later expelled to the lower Mississippi River, and today they make up 2.4% of the country's population and predominantly speak the Cajun language, a unique creole language which is isolated to the Magdalen Province. The remaining 1% of the population is a mixture of indigenous peoples and other immigrant population groups from around the world.
Language[edit | edit source]
There are four primary languages which are considered official languages in Brazoria; these are English, Spanish, German, and French. Civil servants in the country are expected to be fluent in any two of these official languages. Although English is considered the de facto national language, the number of Spanish speakers in the country is almost equal to the number of English speakers; English is often privileged in schools and businesses for its high international usage. The vast majority of Brazorians are bilingual, or fluent in either Spanish or English with a good understanding of the other. German is the third most common language in Brazoria; its speakers are mostly centralised in the Llano Autonomous Province, where limited home rule is granted for the administration of the local people in their own language. Cajun, a creole language of French, English, and Spanish origin, is spoken primarily in the Magdalen Autonomous Province; it is the smallest official language in Brazoria. Various indigenous languages are also spoken throughout the country, and activists have been pushing for recognition of these languages at a national level in order to provide them safety from the threat of extinction. In some major cities, a number of Vietnamese, Mandarin, and Hindi speakers are present, especially so in Houston and Dallas.
(including Spanish Creole)
Religion[edit | edit source]
The Brazorian Constitution enshrines the policy of the secular state as fundamental to the country's society. This arrangement stems from the original agreement between the original Catholic Tejanos and the Protestant Anglo-Americans, who originally composed the Republic of Texas. Both the original Tejanos and the Anglo-Americans recognised the success of the United Statesian model, which aimed to remove any sectarian conflict from the process of national governance. Freedom of religion is a societal underpinning in Brazoria which has long been associated with the tolerance of the state towards all historical immigrant groups. However, the lack of importance upon religious belief in Brazorian society which dominates the nation's modern culture has not always existed in the country. For the later half of the 19th century and the beginning decades of the 20th century, there was a great degree of disdain held by religious peoples against atheists and other irreligious people in Brazoria. For this reason, many irreligious groups settled in the plains of the western portion of the country; most of these early irreligious peoples were German Socialists and other Central European Leftists who would go on to inhabit the modern Llano Autonomous Province. The degree to which irreligious people faced normative ostracism began to fade after the end of the Second World War.
The largest religious group as a percentage of the population in Brazoria is Christianity, which, with all respective denominations combined, represents a total share of 72% of the population as of 2016. Within the Christian religion, the largest denomination is Roman Catholicism, which holds a 41% share of the national population. Catholicism is the fastest growing religion in Brazoria, as the majority of annual immigrants practice Catholicism. The second largest Christian denomination in Brazoria are the Mainline Protestant churches; the Brazorian United Lutheran Church, the Methodist Church of Brazoria, and the Baptist Fellowship of Brazorian are the three largest of these Protestant churches. Collectively, all mainline Protestants in Brazoria represent a total share of 22% of the population. The third largest Christian denomination in Brazoria are the Southern Baptists; belonging entirely to the Eastern Brazorian Baptist Convention, these Baptists consider themselves separate from mainline Protestant churches due to a vast number of theological issues. The Eastern Brazorian Baptist Convention holds a total share of 8% of the Brazorian population. The various other remaining Christian denominations represent 2% of the total population. The second largest religious group in Brazoria are the Canaanites, who collectively make up 17% of the population. Of this group, which makes up the predominant religion in the northwestern provinces, the vast majority are members of the Sanctuary of Isachul. Other Canaanite denominations represent less than 2% of the total population. A further 2% of the total population does not belong to either Christianity or Canaanism, with the largest of these other faiths being Judaism and Buddhism respectively. 9% of the Brazorian population are either atheist, agnostic, or other irreligious persons.
Largest cities[edit | edit source]
Welfare[edit | edit source]
Brazoria is considered to be a welfare state with a developed, extensive social security system that has been cultivated since the beginning of the 20th century. Historically, especially in the 19th century, Brazoria's national government had maintained a laissez-faire attitude towards social expenditures, with the majority of public assistance taking place voluntarily by various religious organisations. It was not until the development of the Progressive Party and the following beliefs of progressivism took to the mainstream in the 1890s that the real politicisation of social improvement began to take precedence in governmental affairs. The first steps towards social improvement came through mandates relating to a national minimum wage and a cap on the number of hours that workers could be expected to perform. The Great Depression is considered one of the primary events that precipitated the rise of the All-Union Syndicalist Party in the 1930s in Brazoria, and under the government of Wilbert Davidson the precursor to the modern social security system took root in the nation, particularly through the foundation of the Bureau of Social Assistance and the Bureau of Education; the former of these organisations would later become the Bureau of Healthcare and the Bureau of Public Security in the early 1950s. By the end of the 1960s, the contemporary Brazorian social security institutions had mostly been founded and began operations, though there have been a number of changes made to social expenditures since then.
Education[edit | edit source]
The Bureau of Education is responsible for the administration of the national universal education system. The Bureau sets national standards and targets which all primary and secondary educational facilities are required to meet. Mandatory education is divided into three levels in Brazoria: elementary education, middle education, and high education. In every regular Province, public schools acquire funding from the national government, and as a result must coordinate their policies to align with the national standards for education. Local planning agencies are responsible for the physical location of the school, and these agencies posses the power to request any special regional accommodations which must be made, such as the use of school buses in more rural areas. The administration and maintenance of public schools is coordinated at a national level but implemented on a smaller scale in the form of a "school district." Districts are responsible for the staffing, scheduling, and upkeep of the schools which are contained within them. As regular Provinces do not have any regional jurisdiction or form of self governance, official policy-making and standard-setting for these Provinces is left to the national government. As a result, all funding for education in regular Provinces is derived from the national government as well.
In Special Provinces, the Autonomous and Metropolitan Provinces respectively, the Bureau of Education continues to standards, but every individual Special Province is able to request a degree of difference depending on the regional situation. In the Autonomous Provinces of Llano and Magdalen, special accommodation is made for the linguistic differences of their respective local societies. In Llano, students are expected to maintain fluency in both German and a second language, which can either be Spanish or English. The same difference is permitted in Magdalen, where the Cajun language replaces the status of German. Because of the primary language difference within the Autonomous Provinces, the administration of specific educational standards are also set differently; where in the regular Provinces the use of specific textbooks can controlled nationally, the language difference requires individually-maintained agencies of textbook administration for both Autonomous Provinces. On several occasions, the differences between the national standard textbooks and Autonomous Province textbooks have caused controversy over regionalist bias, particularly in the subject of history, where both Cajun-Brazorian and German-Brazorian regionalist politics have been said to affect bias in the explanations of historical events and movements. Metropolitan Provinces do not have the same level of material autonomy given to Autonomous Provinces; the primary difference between a regular Province and a Metropolitan Province in regards to education is the amount of control that the Provincial government wields in regard to any particular school district. A Metropolitan Province has more flexibility in terms of administration, meaning that special accommodations can be made without the need for national governmental level approval, given that the Metropolitan Provinces are much more diverse, densely populated, and prone to a wider variety of wealth inequality.
The population of Brazoria has a comparatively large percentage of people with degrees from post-secondary institutions. As of 2018, 41.31% of all Brazorians held any level of degree from an accredited institution of higher learning, up from 38.70% in 2010. The majority of post-secondary institutions in Brazoria are publicly-funded; the national government currently operates two primary systems for higher education, the National University Service and the National Community College Service. The National University Service includes the major public institutions of higher learning in the country which are capable of awarding degrees in the postgraduate level, and its flagship school is the National University of Austin. The National Community College Service is operated in conjunction with school districts in the country, as these institutions are more streamlined with local high schools. Schools which are a part of the NCCS are only able to award associate-level degrees. Private universities exist in Brazoria as well, with the most prominent being Zavala University.
Healthcare[edit | edit source]
The Bureau of Healthcare is the national agency responsible for the administration and operation of universal healthcare in Brazoria. Hospitals and clinics are operated through intermediary institutions respective to each individual province known as Provincial Health Districts, and for most provinces, the policies, procedures, and other operational protocols are decided at the national level through the Bureau. In the case of the Autonomous Provinces, there is more local control over the management of their Provincial Health Districts, though funding and most policies are still mandated by the national government. Metropolitan Provinces also have a degree more control over the physical location of clinics and hospitals, though other procedures remain in line with national policies. Teaching hospitals are the only form of semi-autonomous medical centres permitted to exist in Brazoria; these institutions receive a large amount of funding from the national government and are largely regulated in a manner which lines their own general procedural policy with that of the national government as well. Because of Brazoria's virtual banning of private health practices, the number of doctors which annually leave the country to pursue careers in other Anglo-American states has been a longtime area of political concern in Brazoria.
Dentistry, alongside other highly cosmetic surgical professions, is given more leeway in terms of private cost and operation in Brazoria. The extent to which cosmetic procedures are covered by the Brazorian healthcare system is another pertinent political issue in the country. Current national policy stands as such where the cost of cosmetic operations are covered so long as it is considered necessary for the well-being of a person to have such operations done. For example, a victim of an acid attack would have the expense of any reconstructive surgery covered by the Brazorian system. Conversely, when operations are undertaken purely for cosmetic reasons, such as most plastic surgery operations, these expenses are left entirely on the patient.
Subsidies[edit | edit source]
The Bureau of Public Security is the principal agency of the Brazorian government responsible for the administration of public assistance subsidies. Brazoria maintains a robust social security network centred around the use of subsidies for those with disabilities, unemployed persons, and students. The current system of subsidisation for those with low income dates back to the 1930s, during a major effort to tackle poverty following the Great Depression which saw the development of the Low-Income Assistance Programme. The LIAP later expanded to include more disadvantaged persons during the 1960s, when persons with disabilities and students were added to those included in subsidy coverage. A variety of other anti-poverty programmes are employed by the Brazorian government, such as food stamps and unit-by-unit housing project inspections, to give Brazoria one of the lowest rates of homelessness, malnutrition, and low-income mortality in North America.
Culture[edit | edit source]
Brazoria is uniquely situated at the intersection of three distinct North American cultural regions, Northern Mexico, Dixie, and the Anglo-Southwest. Brazoria has long been known as the place "where the South meets the West," referring not only to its geographic location but to its cultural heritage as well. Alongside the influences caused by the spillover of neighbouring cultural features, the large number of immigrants to the country has definitively shaped the country's cultural composition. The historical influxes of Mexicans, Anglo-Americans, Germans, and other Latin American ethnic groups has contributed greatly to the traditions prevalent throughout Brazoria today. The individual contributions made by specific ethnic groups are today largely amalgamated into what has been called a melting pot, where the formation of a uniquely Brazorian identity is said to have derived from. Indeed, the growing presence of the Tejano people, as well as the increasing prevalence of bilingualism, is considered a key identifier of the emergence of an independent, endemically Brazorian culture.
Art and architecture[edit | edit source]
The first wholly Brazorian artistic movement was an offshoot of the Hudson River School known as Brazorian Pastoralism, a semi-Romantic artistic movement which captured the scenes of settlers in the mid-19th century. The Pastoralists often idealised scenes of early settlers and wagon trains in the Great Plains and the Hill Country, presenting a pioneer spirit which reflected the birth of a new nation and its settlement and taming by the arriving colonists. Pastoralism dominated Brazorian visual art until the development of Brazorian Impressionism in the 1890s, which began to spill over into Brazoria from the emergence of the American Impressionist movement. Art colonies began to dot the Hill Country, especially around the Colorado River, leading to the development of what is known today as the Colorado River School of artists. Albert Yaeger and Louisa Cox are the two most prominent artists to gain significant national recognition from their art; both spent a number of years in art colonies along the banks of the Colorado River.
Brazorian Impressionism diverged into two distinct forms which generally followed European examples of Fauvism and Expressionism. Strong use of colour and a beginning of a departure from the attempt to capture realistic forms are definitive qualities of Brazorian art at the beginning of the 20th century, which is today grouped under a common movement known as Brazorian Expressionism. Proto-Cubism reached Brazoria in the late 1910s, and the movement flourished for a short amount of time, though it never develloped into the matured Cubism which flourished in Europe around the same time. Instead, Brazorian Proto-Cubism retained significant Expressionist influences until the 1930s, when the first exhibitions of Surrealism were held in the country. Brazorian Surrealism soon swept the country with immense popularity, as many began to identify the chaos of the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl within the unique realisation of Surrealist art. Social realism and Pop art were the next two major movements of Brazorian art, though the metropolitan and international nature of the movements meant that the influence of specifically Brazorian cultural features was somewhat lost on these movements. With the development of Minimalism in the 1970s, the uniquely Brazorian flair which was prominent in earlier movements had largely vanished from Brazorian visual art.
The earliest form of architecture used by English-speaking settlers in Brazoria was the log cabin, a vernacular method of construction which was concerned primarily with practicality rather than design. Earlier Spanish missionaries and soldiers constructed a variety of buildings using adobe materials, modern variations of which are still highly popular in more arid regions of the country. The first aesthetically-oriented examples of architecture in Brazoria are mostly examples of the Italianate and Romanesque Revival, which were widely popular throughout North America during the mid-19th century. These two styles dominated Brazorian architecture until the early 20th century, where Art Deco and Arte Moderne became massively influential over the design of many early skyscrapers in the country. Modern architecture thereafter became the most prominent form in Brazoria, moving through the mainstream styles throughout the 20th and early 21st centuries to the Neo-futurist style which is the most popular today.
Film, literature, and music[edit | edit source]
Brazoria contains an as-of-recently expanding independent film production scene, especially in the region around Austin and San Antonio. This region, often referred to in a cultural sense as the Heart of Texas, has become internationally known as a centre of not only cinematic production but of a highly popular Brazorian country music and several television shows as well. No large production firms exist in Brazoria, as do in its neighbour Sierra, the country from which the majority of highly popular films in Brazoria are typically imported. The Brazorian state-funded television company, BMNB, is the largest producer of both television shows and films in the country. The Ministry of Culture and Sport is the primary national agency concerned with the endowment of the BMNB, and the Ministry also commonly gives endowments to Brazorian content production through smaller television networks, such as IBBN and Bravos, as well as at the request of independent filmmakers.
Brazoria began to develop its own literary tradition before the foundation of the nation itself. Garrett Langley, widely considered to be one of the quintessential founders of the nation, was a well-renowned revolutionary poet that fought during the Texas Revolution and later became the President of the Republic of Texas. During the 1840s and the 1850s, many English-speaking poets and novelists were inspired by Langley's own work and coalesced together as the beginning of the distinctly Brazorian literary tradition, namely with the authors Gordon O'Reilly and Preston Johnson and the poet Elizabeth Flores. Mass immigration in the later part of the 19th century contributed critically to continental European influence in Brazorian literature and thought, directly leading to the popularity of famous authors and speakers such as Otto Koch and William Bowers. Samantha Weiss is considered the key transitional figure of Brazorian literature into literary modernism; famous postmodernists dating after Weiss include Daniel Pitz and Walter Bransen. Brazorian authors have contributed to many of the most popular literary genres, the most prominent in the areas of Literary realism, Western fiction, Science fiction, and Literary fiction.
Brazoria has a bustling domestic music industry which encompasses a variety of different genres, including, but not limited to, Brazorian country music, Alternative music, and Brazorian hip hop. Austin is called by many the Live Music Capital of the World, with more live music venues per capita than any other city in North America. Many internationally well-known music festivals are also held in Austin, including South by Southwest and Austin City Limits. Austin is well known for its contributions to both the country and alternative genres, while Houston is widely known for its hip hop music production. San Antonio is widely regarded as the world's leading producer of Tejano music, and the city is also contemporarily experiencing a rise in the number of locally successful reggaeton artists.
Cuisine[edit | edit source]
Brazoria has a diverse culinary scene traditionally dominated by influences from three primary cultural groups: Northern Mexican peoples, German peoples, and Southern Anglo-American peoples. Soul food and Mexican food combine in Brazoria to form one of its most defining culinary traditions, known as Tex-Mex. The word Tex-Mex comes from the names Texas and Mexico; the dated term Texas is used because the food was developed when the region was still called by its original name. Tex-Mex was formed in part by the arrival of African-American slaves in the Nueces valley in the early 19th century, where traditionally Southern methods of cooking were used on the Mexican-derived food crops that were prevalent in the region at the time. By the middle of the century, Tex-Mex had become widely popular throughout Brazoria, and it became regarded as the national cuisine of the country. The arrival of German immigrants in the later part of the 19th century contributed towards the development of a secondary cuisine in the country, a combination of traditionally Southern Anglo-American barbecue with German cuisine which is today known as Roichecue. Roichecue comes from a combination of the German word räuchern, which refers to the culinary process of smoking, and the English word barbecue. Roichecue and Tex-Mex developed over time into the two definitive culinary traditions of the country, with both being famous internationally for their unique flavours and cooking methods.
Dishes considered characteristic of the cumulative Brazorian tradition include, but are not limited to, steak, brisket, sausage and bratwurst, burritos and chimichangas, tacos, guacamole, chili con queso, chicken fried steak and chicken fried chicken, étouffée, and boiled crawfish. Many of these dishes are found in other cuisines around the world, particularly though in the aforementioned regions which have contributed to the development of Brazoria's contemporary culinary tradition. Beer is the most widely consumed alcoholic beverage in the country, though Brazoria is also well known for its vodka and tequila. Dr Pepper is the most popular brand of soft drink in Brazoria; its domestic consumption is triple the amount of all other soft drink brands combined. Brazorians drink coffee five times more than tea. The most popular method of brewing coffee is through the use of the Moka pot, which was brought back from Italy by Brazorian soldiers after the Second World War and became widely popular during the 1950s.
Like most other Western countries, Brazorians typically eat three primary meals throughout the day alongside one smaller supplementary meal. Breakfast in Brazoria is typically small, consisting for most people of a serving of cereal, oatmeal, or taquitos with one or two fruit items and a serving or two of coffee. Lunch is the largest meal eaten by most Brazorians, a tradition which became popular in the later half of the 20th century as Latin American cultural norms swept the country with immense popularity. Lunch is typically eaten with one's family or a group of very close friends, and it is considered so important that schools and businesses in the country typically close for one or two hours in the middle of the day to allow people sufficient time to socialise and eat a large lunch. The merienda is the supplementary meal eaten between lunch and dinner; this snack-like meal was originally eaten after the traditional siesta during the time before the invention and widespread use of air conditioning, and, although the siesta has generally fallen out of mainstream practise, the merienda is still largely consumed as a small, sweet snack with an accompanying coffee. Dinner is eaten at least four hours after the merienda, typically several hours after the sun has set as a way to hold people over until the morning. Dinner in Brazoria is typically quite small, usually consisting, unless it is the day of a special occassion, of only a sandwich, salad, or bowl of soup.
Holidays and sport[edit | edit source]
The Brazorian government recognises two different forms of holidays celebrated throughout the year. The first class of holidays are known as Nationally-Observed Holidays, which includes the following holidays; New Years Day on 1 January, Independence Day on 2 March, Easter which is typically held in April, Memorial Day on the third Monday in April, Labour Day on 1 May, Dia de los Muertos on 31 October, Thanksgiving Day on the fourth Monday in November, Christmas Day on 25 December, and Boxing Day on 26 December. Nationally-Observed Holidays mandate that all non-essential government buildings must be closed on those dates, including schools, governmental offices, and other government institutions. The national government actively encourages private businesses to close on these days, mandating that any employee working on a Nationally-Observed Holiday must receive their daily wage at twice the normal amount. Nationally-Recognised Holidays are the second class of holidays in the country; these holidays do not warrant the additional payment of employees in the country and are mostly cultural celebrations that are acknowledged as significant by the government, with the holidays included ranging from Lent to Oktoberfest.
The three major sports with the most popularity in Brazoria are association football, gridiron football, and baseball. The premier Brazorian league of association football teams, the Lone Star League, is the second most valuable association football league in North America after Mexico's Liga MX, with an average yearly overall attendance of 7.31 million people visiting the stadiums of the LSL's 14 teams. Brazoria's men's national team has won the CONCACAF Gold Cup four times, in 1991, 2002, 2005, and 2013, and the team achieved Runners-Up status in the FIFA World Cup twice, in 1992 and in 2014. Professional gridiron football in Brazoria is largely dominated by the North American Football League, in which Brazoria participates through three teams; the Houston Oilers, the Dallas Cowboys, and the Denver Broncos. Baseball in Brazoria, like association football, is organised domestically through the Brazorian Baseball League, which is composed of 12 teams from across the nation. Other team sports are popular in Brazoria but do not hold the same level of national attention as the three aforementioned do; these sports are basketball, rugby, and lacrosse.