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Colony Universe

Liberty — Initial Infrastructure

by EAB

Building the Township
Starting on day eight the Liberty Council began meeting at least 3 hours every day with a couple of things in mind. The first was to draft a Constitution and Bill of Rights, the second was to get a start on colony infrastructure. The meetings were all public and at the end of each the infrastructure proposals were put out for immediate electronic vote. The results were announced the next day and went into effect at once if ratified. The Council was very careful early on to make sure all of these building proposals were going to pass with a large majority so any haggling was done in session and only then put to the vote.
About a 150 grids were chosen for a communal farm. They were mostly meadowland so that logging and stumping would not be required before getting them into production. A tacit agreement was made that these cleared lands would in time be put up for sale with those in charge of the actual farming being given a priority for their purchase. There were a few complaints concerning the favoritism but the majority felt this only proper and so the proposal passed handily.
A land registry was put into place and colonists began selecting Freeholds at once. Within the first four days over 70% had made a choice. A twenty day selection period was enacted and if anyone still had not been able to decide they would need to select from land not approved for some other use.
A road was started which would run along the river from the hydroelectric power site Andy Stuart would build, past the Community building, and then due south bordering the township farm. For the time being it would end at the farm’s southeast corner. Routes were sketched into the map to continue that road to the lower bridge and port area and to eventually build a road along the east side of the river from the upper bridge to what looked to become Reye’s Farm. The road’s right of way was kept to 50 ft. in width and it was agreed to skirt only the edges of grid sections and adjust the boundaries of any grid the road passed through, if selected for a Freehold, so that no net land was lost. And with one exception no Freeholds would be split. Hanna Parker said to go ahead and run the right of way through her lower section. She said land on both sides of the main street into town would give a lot of options for the future.
The continued existence and use of the general robotic labor pool was confirmed and assignments made from it towards the various projects.
Half of the present lumber output would go to the Township, the other half by lottery to colonists at large. Emily parker was one of the earliest winners and she assigned her rights over to Hanna and Jules so that Hanna’s First Inn could begin construction at once. For now the Community Building would be used for anything suitable. Plans were started for food storage and processing and the start of a manufacturing center.
None of the colonists had ever been involved with boatbuilding but Karl and Pamela Nash had grown up around and owned large yachts and so temporarily took on the titles of Port Captain and Ship Yard Superintendent respectively. Pretty fancy titles for a two person outfit but showing the advantages of getting in early. If they worked out those jobs were likely to become permanent. Their first task would be to put up a dock and see about building a small cargo and fishing vessel.
All of the above were fairly easily decided and rapid progress made on other infrastructure issues. But the Monetary System and the Constitution and Bill of Rights were something else entirely.

Posted in A, I, L | Comments Off

Government — First Colony Farm

by EAB

Primary Edit Lester Reye

When the council in public meeting began talking about getting the farming underway the discussion was lively. Including myself their were five of us colonists who actually owned or operated farms back on Earth. I had raised cattle and hogs before getting into politics and my farm still did the same but with a manager rather than me in person. Frank Turner grew grain, Chen Yamasak had run a vineyard and raised fruit trees as a sideline. Bartholomew (Thal) Isaacson said over his years he had raised a little bit of everything and the Ortega’s (Manuel and Felicia) had raised vegetables and garden crops. All of us had some experience of course in the others major areas of expertise. Hamilton’s selection process had served us well in this area.

The Historian was the acknowledged master by now on poultry and was considering adding turkeys to his mix. Isaacson suggested he add rabbits also, as soon as we could get some through the tubes. With a 30 day gestation period and a breeding cycle of about the same they would give us a secondary source of meat faster than almost anything else. They should also be able to eat the native grasses and in cages be easy for the bots to manage.

The Council agreed that those six, counting the Ortegas as just one member, would make up the farm board and be responsible for drafting and submitting for vote farming related issues that affected the entire colony. Even that farm board would need to be voted upon by the township as a whole. But as none of those who witnessed the meeting where this was approved objected it looked like a given.

We had already cleared and begun to prepare farmland to the north and west sides of the township so it was agreed to use this land, and clear enough more, to get a first 150 grid communal farm in while us farmers worked on private plots. Until we were sure of their safety all the decanted livestock would be kept here and I would be their primary overseer at a rate of 1.1 SLHs. The other farmers would receive the same and workers on the communal farm would be authorized at the 1.0 standard rate. That same principal was applied to Bartlett and Fortson’s lumbering and the Andy Stuart’s power project.

Frank Turner was selected as leader of the farm board and his first proposal fit right into my wish to find work for Burt Buchanan and others who had not as of yet been contributing much to the colony. Frank said that since we would need more land than we had set aside for the communal farm to be put into agriculture, that the township should authorize payment at the 1.0 rate for colonists in the general labor pool to satisfy their 30 hour tax, by clearing and preparing the land around the farmers Freehold sites.

Jack the Blade immediately objected to that and in no uncertain terms. The compromise we finally worked out was to permit the labor use as township equity but that the farmers benefiting must pay back to the colony the number of labor hours used before they would be able to purchase that cleared land. It was also agreed that they would be given a preference when it came time to purchase said land if they agreed to continue using it as farmland and contributed crops to the general supply at a rate equal to what the demonstration farm was producing until this land was paid for plus an additional 4 A-years or until the demonstration farm was sold by the township to the highest bidder. In the meantime the township would farm such land and own all proceeds exactly as it did with the demonstration farm. We put in a clause letting us revisit this provision in 2 A-years and modify it to make purchase easier for the farmers if that seemed proper.

That proposal just squeaked out of council when a qualifier was added limiting such lands to no more than 50 extra grids per farm and that at least 80% of those grids be kept in production till the entire grant was paid for. All timber cleared from any such land would be township stock and used in township construction or sold at the direction of the appropriate body and again after a vote by the citizenry.

The last farm related proposal authorized all colonists a right to procure seeds for their personal use if there was any surplus after the needs of the township farms were satisfied. The price of those seeds would be set or put up for bid when the initial communal needs were determined.

Posted in A, F, G | Comments Off

Incubation Tubes — First Usage

by EAB

“Onboard the Mayflower were a dozen Incubation Chambers large enough to bring a human fetus to gestation.” See E/A Population Dynamics. Six were large enough to bring cattle or similarly sized mammals to term. Except for power requirements, which were minimal but crucial; the fluid circulation system must never shut down, they were self contained and sealed against any forms of viral contamination.

There were also almost two thousand prepared embryos including multiple samples of various strains of domesticated animals and a range of other Earth native species. More than a few of the wild samples were from species which existed only in zoos or DNA banks. And yes there were human embryos too. We were a real Noah’s Ark.

Prior to reaching planetfall on Alchiba all twelve were started. Four with cattle, two with bison, four pigs and two sheep. The gestation times were figured so all would be due about a month from first landing. This was an ambitious plan but the thinking was that if no edible fodder for the animals was available the tubes would have all been tested and a second attempt made with the timing determined by the availability of crops raised for their use. The units would be sent down as soon as arrangements could be made planetside to care for them.

As soon as the original Liberty Town Council was formed a spirited debate ensued concerning the future use of these Incubators. The points in contention included.

1. How many to allocate to humans and how many to animals. There was a case made that their use for raising humans would be immoral; overruled for now but sure to resurrect itself.

2. Who gets to get their genes in the tubes? If we’ve got exactly as many couples as we’ve got tubes allocated to humans then we’ve got no problem. If we have more couples than tubes how do we decide who gets in? Lottery? If we’ve got fewer (which we almost certainly will, especially after the first ‘rush’ - if one happens) do we just reallocate the unused ones to animals, or do we ask for volunteers to donate their genes and volunteers to raise the resulting kids? If we do that, who’s genes do we use / how do we decide?

3. Should we instead use the human embryos on the Mayflower to insure the greatest possible genetic mix in our population as a hedge against selective disease vectors and an expansion of the genetic base and protection against inbreeding?

The original consensus was to let the first group of domesticated animals, those now only twenty some days from term out to see how they survived on the native grasses. The pigs diet would be supplemented from human food slops which so long as we were eating mainly the canned rations were minimal, but with only four pigs to start with they at least were very likely to survive unless struck down by predation or disease.

The second group would also be animals in a mix the same as the first. There was some sentiment to include two horses in this second population, replacing the bison, but the realization that the bots could perform all of the transportation and farm labor functions of a horse, with out the care and maintenance ruled them out for the time being. There was also a strong case made for the inclusion of a couple of dogs but again, as the species choices were being argued, hunting, sheep, guard dog, it was pointed out that the bots could take over their function also for the time being. Until this second group began to ‘Hatch’ the debate on the bio-ethics and human use of the tubes would be in full swing.

See E/A Incubation Tubes Human Use and Bioethics....

Posted in I | Comments Off

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