Like war we will never change”
|Civil Rights||Economy||Political freedom|
The United States of Nukapedia has now been founded in the The East Pacific and we can now start to vote on our issues. Every week I will bring you a number of issues, each with a number of solutions which you can all vote on. The most popular solution will be put through.
About our nation
The United States of Nukapedia is a tiny, socially progressive nation, notable for its barren, inhospitable landscape and irreverence towards religion. The hard-working population of 18 million Nukapedians enjoy some of the most opulent lifestyles in the region, unless they are unemployed or working-class, in which case they are variously starving to death or crippled by easily preventable diseases.
The relatively small government juggles the competing demands of Law & Order, Defense, and Welfare. Citizens pay a flat income tax of 8.6%.
The strong Nukapedian economy, worth 1.07 trillion bottle caps a year, is broadly diversified and led by the Uranium Mining industry, with major contributions from Gambling, Pizza Delivery, and Door-to-door Insurance Sales. Average income is 59,705 bottle caps, with the richest citizens earning 7.9 times as much as the poorest.
The mining industry is making inroads into environmentally sensitive areas, organ donation is compulsory, the alarmingly racist TV show 'Bigtopians Say the Darndest Things' is a hit, and military spending is on the increase. Crime is moderate. Nukapedia's national animal is the deathclaw, which teeters on the brink of extinction due to widespread deforestation.
Nukapedia is ranked 411th in The East Pacific and 13,606th in the world for Largest Insurance Industry, scoring 3 on the Risk Expulsion Effectiveness Rating.
National happenings are quick snippets of information which update every time we pass legalization.
- Nukapedia was ranked in the Top 10% of the world for Largest Insurance Industry.
- Nukapedia was ranked in the Top 10% of the region for Largest Insurance Industry.
Last week's issues
Military Demands Increased Spending
The Department of Defense has put its case for a substantial increase in funding for the coming financial year.
yes Solution One: "These are turbulent times we live in," says Defense Chief Roxanne Deathclaw. "Turbulent and dangerous. And the only sensible response to that, of course, is to build a lot more weapons. Unless we get the funding we need, I can't promise that we'll be able to defend Nukapedia's sovereign borders from rogue nations and foreign powers. Or those leaky boatloads of refugees, for that matter."
no Solution Two: "NO MORE BOMBS," chant the protestors outside Parliament House, in a repetitious and increasingly annoying appeal. Spokesperson Samuel Trax, speaking through a feedback-afflicted microphone, says, "Nukapedia needs fewer weapons, not more! Make the world a safer place! Disarm now!"
We opted to agree with "Defense Chief Roxanne Deathclaw" and build more weapons.
Uranium Deposit Promises To Enrich Nukapedia
Prospecting company Nukes4U has uncovered a large uranium deposit in Nukapedia's south-west.
no Solution One: "This is a terrific find!" claims Nukes4U CEO Gertie Mombota. "It will provide an enormous stimulus to our economy and create thousands of new jobs. It's win-win! All we need from the government is permission to bulldoze the rainforest that's on top of the deposit."
no Solution Two: "You've got to be kidding," says Green politician Lucas Cohen. "This rainforest is thousands of years old! This country needs more environmental protection, not less. And to destroy the environment in order to mine uranium that then goes into nuclear bombs--well, that really sticks in my craw."
yes Solution Three: "There's no need for an either-or decision," says the government's Minister for Mining, Clear-Felling, and the Environment. "We can preserve most of the rainforest and allow mining of a small part. After all, think of all the good that the money from this uranium deposit can bring to Nukapedia."
We opted to agree with Minister for Mining, Clear-Felling, and the Environment and mine small parts of the rainforest while preserving the rest.
Compulsory Organ Harvesting Proposed
Tempers flare in Nukapedia as civil libertarians and the healthcare lobby clash once again over mandatory post-mortem organ donation.
yes Solution One: "It's not as crazy as it sounds," says Dr. Roger Johnson. "Every day, people die because we don't have the organs to save them. Well, that and widespread under-funding of the health system. But the point is, if the government allowed us to take organs from dead people, we could save hundreds of lives a year. And come on, it's not like dead people need them."
no Solution Two: "You keep your damn hands off my organs!" says alarmed hospital patient Hillary Lopez. "They are my organs, and I'll do with them what I like. The government has no right to my body."
We opted to agree with Dr Roger Johnson and have mandatory organ donations upon death.
Should Democracy Be Compulsory?
In response to a slow news week, certain highbrow newspapers have stirred up the debate over voluntary vs compulsory voting.
yes Solution One: "Compulsory voting makes about as much sense as having the death penalty for attempted suicide," says civil rights activist Heather Winters. "You can't force people to be free! You can only give them the choice. Besides, if all those derelicts who can't be bothered to get off their butts once every few years voted, who would they elect? I shudder to think."
no Solution Two: "It's not contradictory at all," argues political commentator Sean Woolf. "The fact is, if not everyone votes, the outcome isn't truly representative. Some groups--like elderly gun nuts--vote more often than others. That's why we always end up with such terrible politicians."
no Solution Three: "This raises an interesting issue," says Al Nguyen, your brother. "And that is: why do we need elections, anyway? Seems to me it would be much simpler if you just decided what was right, and did it. Wouldn't that save everyone a lot of time?"
We opted to agree with civil rigts activist Heather Winters and keep voting optional.
Minorities Demand Representation In TV Soaps
Nukapedia's TV soaps--famous around the region--have come under fire for their lack of ethnic diversity.
no Solution One: "Every night my family and I sit down to watch 'The Brash and the Backstabbing'," says Ruby al-Zahawi. "But where are the Lilliputians like myself? Where are the Bigtopians? The Marche Noirians? People from those cultures can be just as brash and backstabbing, but we never see them on the screen. The government must act to remove this silent apartheid from our TV screens."
no Solution Two: "Those Lilliputians don't know how good they have it," says Abraham Peters, spokesperson for the Tasmanians Against Ethnic Stereotyping. "Tasmanians are on television all the time, but always in crude, stereotypical roles. The answer is not to enforce ethnic quotas, but to award government prizes for the positive portrayal of minorities. That'll work better, and be cheaper, too."
yes Solution Three: "The government should do what now?" says TV studio executive Mia Mistletoe. "You've got to be kidding. We make soaps here, not documentaries. I should be able to put whichever characters I want into my shows. Quotas! Government prizes! God save me! Hasn't the government got anything better to do? Why don't they just back off and let society work out these things on its own?"
We opted to agree with TV studio executive Mia Mistletoe and give shows freedom to represent minorities however they wish.
This week's issues
Click though the tabs to view and vote on the different issues.
Animal Liberation Front Strikes Again
The increasingly militant Animal Liberation Front struck again last night, freeing dozens of chickens bound for delicious snack packs.
Solution One: "These nuts have got to be stopped," demands concerned consumer Efthamia Ruff. "They need to face the fact people want snack packs, no matter how many innocent chickens must be sacrificed. Besides, chickens would do the same to us if they had the chance."
Solution Two: "These Liberationists are highlighting an important issue," pleads Barack Dodinas. "Too often, animals are put through needless cruelty, just to make their flesh taste a little more deliciously succulent. I'm sure we could ban the more horrific abuses without putting too much of a dent in our national obesity figures. Couldn't we?"
Solution Three: "Animals have feelings too!" yells protestor Dave al-Zahawi, before being set upon by hungry passers-by. "Free the animals! Ban meat-eating!"
Solution Four: Economist Fleur Peters has an alternative. "You don't need to take away the people's right to choose. You just need to build the costs of animal suffering into the price. A tax on meat-eating, in proportion to the amount of cruelty involved, would do the trick. Plus think of the benefit for the national coffers! Of course, poor people wouldn't be able to afford meat, but that's just more incentive for them to get jobs."
Nudists Demand Time In Sun
A loose coalition of sartorially-challenged individuals known as "Let It All Hang Out" has called on the government to relax public nudity laws.
Solution One: "For too long, our bodies have been trapped in these prisons of cotton and polyester!" yells protester Doris Lopez, while apparently developing a nasty case of sunburn. "We must repeal the puritanical laws that make public nudity a crime. My body--my choice to dangle!"
Solution Two: "I agree," muses sociology professor Kirby James. "But I don't think the protestors are going far enough. Public nudity shouldn't be an option: it should be compulsory. Nudity is highly liberating. And it would put that disgusting "Hooters" out of business once and for all."
Solution Three: "Whoa, whoa," says noted accountant Hack Utopia. "Are these people serious? The last thing I want to see when I'm out for a coffee is some lumbering, over-weight nudist coming down the sidewalk toward me. If people want to get naked, they can do it in the privacy of their own homes. Think of the children!"
Budget Time: Accountants Excited
It's time for the government to allocate spending for the coming year, and as always, special interest groups are keen to have their say.
Solution One: "The state of the education system is, in many areas, simply frightful," says Teachers Union leader Natalia McKay. "And even where we are doing well, we could do better. I appeal to the authorities for a substantial boost in funding. Remember, the children are our future."
Solution Two: "We won't have a future unless we improve police numbers and rebuild the military," says General Chastity Summers. "Oh, it's all well and good to have your fancy education and your nice cars, until some tinpot dictatorship decides to invade. And don't pretend like there aren't any of them in our region. Our number one priority has to be security."
Solution Three: "Education is nice, but Health and Social Welfare are more important," says celebrity social worker Gregory Woolf. "This is where the people who really need government help are: the marginalized of our society. If we don't help them, what kind of a nation are we?"
Solution Four: "Hey, I've got a crazy idea," says noted libertarian and bird-watcher Efthamia Nguyen. "How about the government stops taking so much tax from people? Give us a tax cut and we'll buy the things we need ourselves. People need to be weaned off the government teat!"
Too Much Yakking, Already, Say Delegation
Some people say Nukapedia's policy on free speech has gone too far.
Solution One: "These days, anyone says whatever they want with no regard to what kind of dribble is coming out of their mouths!" says angry commuter Prudence Falopian. "It's gone too far. We should go back to the good old days, when if someone started talking garbage, we'd smack them one."
Solution Two: "We need more free speech, not less," argues civil rights campaigner Calvin Eliot. "Free speech allows ideas to be explored, challenged, and discussed in a productive, open forum. It teaches our kids to be critical thinkers. And dirty words, of course, but that's just the price you pay."
Solution Three: "The right to free speech is a central tenet of our system of democracy," says religious leader Stefanie Dimitrov. "But surely the right to not have your religious beliefs mocked by others is worth something, too? We mustn't put up with intolerance!"
Police Consider "Big Brother" Anti-Crime System
The Police department is considering installing surveillance cameras in all major public areas, in an effort to crack down on crime.
Solution One: "This is a blatant invasion of the right to privacy!" says libertarian web site operator Faith Goethe. "Now I can't even go out in public any more without being watched? And you know this is just the beginning. Today there are cameras in city streets. Tomorrow they're peering through your bedroom window."
Solution Two: "Hey, I've got news for you," says Police media liaison Alexei de Jong. "When you're out in public, PEOPLE CAN SEE YOU. These cameras will be extremely helpful in reducing the national crime rate. Frankly, I can't see what the fuss is about."
Solution Three: "This 'slippery slope' argument has got me thinking," says Police Minister Lara Never. "You know, it would be a lot easier to fight crime if we watched people all the time. Not with cameras, of course. That's clearly an invasion of privacy. But how about a national database of our citizens, coupled with compulsory ID cards and barcoding? It would stop crime dead in its tracks."