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NationStates

There’s an online simulation game called NationStates where you play the ruler of a fictional country (that you create). In a nutshell, as ruler of your country, you choose which laws to enact, and this affects the citizens of your country. It’s not the most exciting game, and there is no way to win or lose. You just pick laws to enact and watch as your decisions shape the state of the country. The game is based on the book Jennifer Government by Max Barry (who also started the game). 

 

The point of all that is that I’ve been playing for a few weeks, and here is how my country has turned out so far:

 

The Dominion is a very large, environmentally stunning nation, remarkable for its burgeoning panda population. Its compassionate, cynical population of 79 million are ruled without fear or favor by a psychotic dictator, who outlaws just about everything and refers to the populace as “my little playthings.”

 

The enormous, corrupt government juggles the competing demands of Education, Law & Order, and Social Welfare. The average income tax rate is 35%, but much higher for the wealthy. A large private sector is dominated by the Information Technology industry.

 

The government is making attempts at curtailing the flood of spam emails with little progress, all tariffs have been abolished, prime commercial land is being swamped with archaeological teams, and skate parks can be found in every city. Crime — especially youth-related — is totally unknown, thanks to the all-pervasive police force and progressive social policies in education and welfare.  The country’s national animal is the panda, which frolics freely in the nation’s many lush forests.

 

I resent its characterization of me as “psychotic”, and its surprisingly difficult to crush political freedoms and civil rights while maintaing a healthy economy.

 

UPDATE: “Political activists are routinely executed”. It was that or free, fair. amd open elections. *sigh*

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