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Skallagrim
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  • Just saw the mod warning tag on your post and it's word choices.

    El oh el.
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    It's apparently extra wrong to call out a female user for (metaphorically) whoring themselves out, i.e. shilling.

    Presumably, it'd be more okay with a male user?

    (Anyway, I called that user 'he' in the same post, and didn't even know his/her/its gender.)
    A bit random, but I’ve also been wondering about the culinary traditions the Universal Empire will develop? Given all of that cultural, ethnic, and ecological diversity, I assume there’d be an plethora of foods to try that’d vary from place to place, many of which the Americans will enthusiastically bring back to the homeland (alongside a hodgepodge of other “foreign” trinkets and luxuries they encounter in their conquests). Personally, I’d be open to having Eastern European and Middle Eastern foods become more mainstream in American culture, and considering how those regions are probably within America’s line of sight, that could very well happen.
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    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    It's impossible to predict what will stick around / get popular. But food tends to be one of the first element of all cultural exchanges, so some kind of culinary evolution is inevitable.

    (By the way: please raise points like this in conversation, not in profile posts. The latter for some reason result in me getting repeated alerts every single time. It makes it confusing as to which alerts I've already seen, and which are actually new.)
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Sorry, will do as asked from now on. :)

    If, at any point, sharing my random “shower thoughts” becomes bothersome, let me know and I’ll stop.
    You know, something else that'd surprise many Greeks and Romans is how the Soviet Union broke up peacefully. Sure, it was "troublesome" for people living in the midst of it, but at least no shots were fired or nukes let loose.

    (The Yugoslav Wars, on the other hand, would probably line up more with their expectations, though I can also imagine many Greco-Roman observers remaining wary and arguing that Russian Civil War II has only been delayed until after Putin dies, not prevented altogether.)
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    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    Most historical folks would be very surprised, because the historical norms for such things are based on the conditions then existing. (Hilariously, if Rome and Persia had possessed nukes, they'd probably have been more careful with them than we are. Ancient wars were often very... practically-minded.)

    In reverse: we "moderns" have the benefit of hind-sight, but I think many people alive today still have little understanding of how... non-ideological wars have historically tended to be. (Of course, that's the norm, and we are utterly insane fanatics, historicaly speaking.)

    Consider how many Greeks just worked in Persian Employ, or how Romans fought Persian campaigns and then just negotiated a settlement. Total war is only interesting to the desperate and the unhinged.
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Thanks. As you know, though, I genuinely fear that our distinctly "frenzied" brand of total war will mark the end of our age far more than it did theirs, and combined with the kinds of weapons we have at our avail now... yeah, you get the idea.

    Even leaving ideology aside, I imagine there'd be a lot of shock value to how we can make death rain from the skies or oversee the "processed", industrial-scale slaughter of millions of "undesirables" in just a few short years. So, if there's any brand of warfare that'd give even the Greco-Romans pause, odds are it's ours—as you've alluded to—and I imagine that tales of Verdun and Stalingrad would make quite the impression. :(
    Had an "odd" idea from this thread, but because I'm curious, I don't suppose Imperial America could develop something of an "American" language descended from English?

    Because personally, I don't think the influx of lots of foreign vocabulary will be the only significant change, as I imagine the language itself will come to accommodate the absorption of foreign peoples and colonial subjects who may struggle with its inconsistent grammar and orthographic rules. (e.g.: The institution of a standardized spelling system.)
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    The reality (hitorically as well) is that most people could speak a regular (on near enough to regular) form of the common language, and used that when talking to their social superiors. At home, they'd speak their own dialect. It seems quite probable to me that in the future, the West will see many people speaking a gamut of all sorts of languages, with most everyone speaking "Koine English" (to borrow the Greek term) as well. That being a cosmopolitan, "mingled" form of English for the universal era. And the elite will speak a more refined form of this, with deliberately classical, genteel affectations.

    Naturally, it would be hilarious if the common, "imperial" English becomes known as "American", and the elite variety being "High American". Fanciful, of course -- but a fun idea.
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Hmm, fascinating.

    Hopefully, future historians, archaeologists, and other experts will have more access to the writings and language of "common people" from the "Occidental Age" than we do for the average Greek or Roman who lived during Antiquity. I know you don't think inordinately much from our period will be preserved or well-remembered, but considering that literacy is universal, I imagine that finding diaries or letters written by your garden-variety Westerner will be easier to come across, finicky digital preservation notwithstanding. (And that's the key issue here, it seems.)
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Anyway, be interesting to have future English (or perhaps, "American") acquire a register or two, with the universal variant as "Standard American" and an upper-crust variant as "High American", similar to what you've said. (Though, I also expect many regional "American" dialects to develop, in addition to communities still retaining altogether different native languages.) That's already the case with Arabic, I believe, so if we're looking for modern-day parallels to future linguistic developments, that could be an indicator, too.
    Have some more creative-writing proposals in mind, and was wondering if I could run them by you via PM?

    (Most of them aren't set in the same universe as my Two Empires scenario, though there's a couple far-future story ideas I've been toying with, in which the civilizations of 3000 A.D. or whatever inherit a mix of American and Chinese influences.)
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    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Thanks, bro.

    Looking forward to discussing those as soon as I can craft some longer write-ups, though I don't suppose you've seen my second round of comments on your "Moderate Enlightenment" scenario, as well?
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    I'm working on replying to a few threads of discussion. This takes some time.
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    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Sure thing.

    I know you're busy, so no rush. :)
    Nice to see you replied to my thread.

    Was wondering what you'd say, especially in light of your already-established views on what's to come at large. In which case, I don't suppose the twentieth century will be considered more of a "mid-Modernity" phase that builds on the nineteenth century, but is dwarfed by the carnage of the twenty-first?
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    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    Well, yes. I think that in Classical Antiquity, you had the period between Alexander and Caesar, and in the middle of that period, you find the "civilisation-spanning" wars that defined Roman power in practice, readying the way for explicit imperialism later. In the same way, we have a period starting with Napoleon, and the World Wars (and the Cold War, in that sense) were the great conflicts of "Mid-Modernity", establishing American hegemony over the West. Now we wait for a counterpart of Caesar, whose ascent will close this era. That such a figure is to be expected, I don't doubt, as you know.
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    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Quite.

    Personally, I still imagine that the carnage to end Modernity will be more of a "hybrid" of World War III and a series of civil wars across the West, rather than one or the other. I'll elaborate more in private, but given how fighting would bleed over borders and initially uninvolved powers would smell blood in the water, something of a "Great Global War" doesn't seem out of the cards to me. (The Mid-Modern conflicts, meanwhile, would be retroactively termed "Lesser World Wars", which—in light of the conflict to close out Modernity—is exactly what they'd be.)


    I know you're a "philosophical anarchist" instead of a true ancap, but still funny.

    (Of course, you could probably swap out Nazism for Modernity and Ancapistan for Traditionalism, and that'd more or less align with what you foresee. ;))
    Since you mentioned it in the AH thread, I don't suppose you'd be open to discussing other ATL ways the macro-historical cycle you discern could've happened?

    A "Blue Trump" scenario where the parties switch trajectories and invert their platforms relative to OTL is fascinating, though more dramatic and further-back departures—such as a non-communist Russia becoming the next Persia—are also worth discussing, I think.
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    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    Throw points of discussion into the ongoing convo. I'm slow-responding currently, because work is busy and stuff that requires actual thinking to answer takes time. Especially when I'm tired.
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Sure thing.

    I ask, because I've also been contemplating an outline that's something of an "unofficial sequel" to Back in the USSA. Which does, admittedly, come across as rather silly and forces too many parallels to be realistic, though at the same time, I think it presents some "fun" challenges for what the macro-historical cycle means for the twenty-first century. (e.g., Where the heck does a lasting British Empire fit in?)
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    I expect, obviously, more such "ungoverned" regions to exist for considerable stretches of time in the future. One may indeed expect many "peripheral" regions to be like this by default, after the unprecedently huge state apparatus of Modernity simply ceases to be functional. I do not expect utopia, not even close -- but I don't think such places will be anywhere close to the worst regions to make a life, either.
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    Do note that in practice, "rugged individualism" exists in harmony with "rugged communalism". Those who imagine they can just live out in total isolation... well, they tend to die from a stupid infection that could easly have been treated if only there had been someone else around. But those who live in a rural community and take care of each there, without ever forming any formalised body of government, tend to be very happy. (And those who live outside that community, in greater isolation, and occasionally venture into town to trade e.g. furs or whatever... well, they tend to be pretty happy too. But that's not an easy life.)
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    I've seen the Icelandic Commonwealth and the Old American West cited as examples, yes.

    Hopefully, our descendants will have better luck setting up "revivals" of those down the line, though I expect the Crisis of the 21st Century will leave lots of room to set those up abroad. (Incidentally, part of me also wonders what'd happen if some modern experts—economists, lawyers, political scientists, the works—were magically sent there and had the "government as a necessary force" meme dismantled right before their eyes. There'd certainly be "objectionable" elements that they'd want to forcibly put a stop to, of course, but still.)
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    I've seen the series on the traditional forms, and I really like those. (Makashi for life, by the way.) Versus debates generally don't interest me all that much.
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    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Understandable.

    Actually, his content was what got me interested in real-life swordplay as a kid. (I did fencing for a few years myself, but have long since stopped. Maybe I should pick it up again, depending on how things go… )
    Hi, Skall.

    Just out of curiosity, I don’t suppose you have any ancient-history or philosophy-themes TLs? I remember that you wrote a brief, several-entry one back on AH.com, but wasn’t sure if you’ve done and/or had plans for further writing since then.

    Thanks and goodnight,
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Thanks for the three-part answer.

    Don’t have many comments right now, but I don’t suppose a “Worse Worlds” TL could be in the cards? If so, maybe some of them might take OTL trends you view as pernicious and escalate them to a degree that’s give even OTL people pause. Just a thought, though. :)
    Skallagrim
    Skallagrim
    But Zyobot, I'm already an infamous pessimist about the future! Surely I can't be altogether negative about everything? ;)
    • HaHa
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    Zyobot
    Zyobot
    Ha-ha.

    Fair, but even if you were to go through with my “Worse Worlds” idea, you could also still tend to it less often than your “Better Worlds” one.

    Although, you and I seem to agree on a grim future ahead of us, though we may disagree on exactly what’s coming next. (Which I’ve elaborated on in my latest posts in our conversation, if you’ve had a chance to see that.)
    Hello! H*ly Sh*t is it you? The one and only from AH.com banned by the Tyrant himself?
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