Hail, Britannia

LeinadB93

Monthly Donor
So in an effort to move this along, and give you all an idea as to who the new SDP leader is, I'm going to get members here to vote on the candidates.

Credit to @Turquoise Blue for coming up with the candidates and their brief bios. I've linked to their OTL wikipedia pages in case any of you didn't know who they were.

The election will take place ITL under the exhaustive ballot. But in reality I will eliminate the bottom four before asking you to choose again from the top three. Then produce the election wikibox and share the party leader lists I've had stored for years! I'll check the results on Wednesday, then post the next poll.

Here is the poll.

Isaac Herzog (Westralia; Ararat and the Islands): SDP MIP since 2013, and former Chief Minister of Ararat. A very much foreign policy, liberal-internationalist chap who knows to tack to the left every once in a while but overall is of the moderate faction. Would be the first Jewish prime minister since Javits if he led the SDP to victory, the first from the SDP, and the first to hail from Westralia.

Nick Brown (England; Newcastle, Tyneside and Sunderland): A sort of elder statesman, he is very much of a more working-class sort of Blairism, and regularly wins re-election with high margins in his constituency of Tyne and Wear. Openly gay, he would be the first openly LGBT leader of one of the Big Three. Some have labelled him a "return to the 2000s" though, and there are some in more conservative dominions that have lodged "concerns".

Bérénice Laurent (Ohio Country; Ville de Detroit): Black British, Francophone, MIP for Detroit, she has been a strong voice from the backbenches for the SDP to "rediscover its values" and notably is the most mute about their criticism of the Lim government, to the point where it's understood that the embattled former PM would prefer her to win. Would be the first Francophone PM since Trudeau if she led the SDP to victory, and the first Black British PM.

Olivia Chow (Canada; Old Toronto): Wife/widow and successor of Jack Layton [to his seat of Old Toronto], she in a sense is trying to capture the "Layton magic" and has notably criticised Lim for what she sees as "moving away from Jack's vision". Still on the left of the SDP broadly, but not of the Lim faction, that's for sure.

Sir Paul Krugman (Columbia; list): Unexpectedly, the Chancellor of the Exchequer has thrown his hat into the ring, defying those who thought he would endorse either Laurent or Chow. Reports has it that he sees Laurent as too hard-left and Chow as criticising his economic policy and so has decided on the third choice - stand for the leadership himself. He has some appeal, that is no doubt, but will the SDP back him?

John Delaney (Columbia; list): A "loud lout" as some report the PM has referred to him, Delaney is considered the banner-holder of the unrepentant Blairites and controversially declared his campaign for the leadership the day after the election, which has turned off quite a few people who think he's just an ambitious so-and-so, even with his fellow Blairites. Still, he has doggedly went around Britain and put in the foot hours.

Anthony Brown (Columbia; Baltimore West-Columbia): Managed to just reach the threshold for MIP nominations. A former member of the Columbian Parliament and Army veteran in the Middle East and Somalia, Brown made the jump to the Imperial Parliament at the 2015 election. A relatively unknown backbencher, Brown is very much a modrate Blairite but lacks experience in the imperial government. Likely only in the election to raise veterans, education and international issues.

Then there are several candidates who failed to get enough MPs. Those include Cyd Ho (Hong Kong; Hong Kong Island West and Wan Chai) [endorsed Laurent], Harold Ford Jr. (Carolina; Raleigh West) [endorsed Krugman] and most notably David Miliband (England; list) [endorsed nobody] in a last-minute shocker.
 
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Voted Laurent because this Britain needs a black PM.
Indeed it does
Guys, I know it's a joke but seriously that line of thinking has and can cause a lot of problems.

Look up, The boondocks anime obama election video called "I'm voting for Obama because..." by ImmaBoondocks (about 30 sec long on YouTube) as a perfect example of three different voters voting for Obama for the wrong reasons,

The first reason is swallow and in many cases brutally open, he is black, I am black, so I will vote for him regardless any other information.

The second reason is vapid and transferring one characteristic onto another, he is fiscally fit so he must be fit to lead, so I will vote for him.

The Thrid reason is ignorance and projection, I don't know the mans policy's or aims, but he is like me on a superficial levels so he must have the same policy as me by default, so I will vote for him.

Just because "This Britain needs a Black PM" A) doesn't make it actually so and if fact could create problems or backfire down the line by potentially forcing the issue (example of Hillary in 2016) and B) could push out a better candidate down the road.

An election should elected in the populations view the best person with the best policy's to the role of power, otherwise the person may not be up to the task or will act against the population which voted for it.

The PM should be Merit and any other characteristics should either be a bonus or not matter at all, in other words vote for Laurent if you want but vote for him for the right reasons.
 
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Guys, I know it's a joke but seriously that line of thinking has and can cause a lot of problems.

Look up, The boondocks anime obama election video called "I'm voting for Obama because..." by ImmaBoondocks (about 30 sec long on YouTube) as a perfect example of three different voters voting for Obama for the wrong reasons,

The first reason is swallow and in many cases brutally open, he is black, I am black, so I will vote for him regardless any other information.

The second reason is vapid and transferring one characteristic onto another, he is fiscally fit so he must be fit to lead, so I will vote for him.

The Thrid reason is ignorance and projection, I don't know the mans policy's or aims, but he is like me on a superficial levels so he must have the same policy as me by default, so I will vote for him.

Just because "This Britain needs a Black PM" A) doesn't make it actually so and if fact could create problems or backfire down the line by potentially forcing the issue (example of Hillary in 2016) and B) could push out a better candidate down the road.

An election should elected in the populations view the best person with the best policy's to the role of power, otherwise the person may not be up to the task or will act against the population which voted for it.

The PM should be Merit and any other characteristics should either be a bonus or not matter at all, in other words vote for Laurent if you want but vote for him for the right reasons.
Look buddy, they just think it would be fun for this fictional timeline to have something unique, like a black British prime minister.

If you really feel the need to post your hot takes about how The Boondocks proves why identity politics are bad, Chat is just a few clicks away.
 
Look buddy, they just think it would be fun for this fictional timeline to have something unique, like a black British prime minister.

If you really feel the need to post your hot takes about how The Boondocks proves why identity politics are bad, Chat is just a few clicks away.
That’s fine, its just that the conservation triggered a couple of memories about why voting such a way is a bad Idea (you know when you read something and are immediately reminded of something else related in some way to it).

Also I was only using the show as an example, never watched it completely as I have only seen clips.
 
That’s fine, its just that the conservation triggered a couple of memories about why voting such a way is a bad Idea (you know when you read something and are immediately reminded of something else related in some way to it).

Also I was only using the show as an example, never watched it completely as I have only seen clips.
Of course, but the funny thing is selection panels within political parties until very recently even Liberal ones all came to the same conclusion The best candidate is always an upper class white English lawyer who went to Eton (or Harrow) and then read PPE at Oxford (Cambridge). Funny you would think that talent might be a little more spread out....
 

LeinadB93

Monthly Donor
Guys, I know it's a joke but seriously that line of thinking has and can cause a lot of problems.

Look up, The boondocks anime obama election video called "I'm voting for Obama because..." by ImmaBoondocks (about 30 sec long on YouTube) as a perfect example of three different voters voting for Obama for the wrong reasons,

The first reason is swallow and in many cases brutally open, he is black, I am black, so I will vote for him regardless any other information.

The second reason is vapid and transferring one characteristic onto another, he is fiscally fit so he must be fit to lead, so I will vote for him.

The Thrid reason is ignorance and projection, I don't know the mans policy's or aims, but he is like me on a superficial levels so he must have the same policy as me by default, so I will vote for him.

Just because "This Britain needs a Black PM" A) doesn't make it actually so and if fact could create problems or backfire down the line by potentially forcing the issue (example of Hillary in 2016) and B) could push out a better candidate down the road.

An election should elected in the populations view the best person with the best policy's to the role of power, otherwise the person may not be up to the task or will act against the population which voted for it.

The PM should be Merit and any other characteristics should either be a bonus or not matter at all, in other words vote for Laurent if you want but vote for him for the right reasons.
Look buddy, they just think it would be fun for this fictional timeline to have something unique, like a black British prime minister.

If you really feel the need to post your hot takes about how The Boondocks proves why identity politics are bad, Chat is just a few clicks away.
That’s fine, its just that the conservation triggered a couple of memories about why voting such a way is a bad Idea (you know when you read something and are immediately reminded of something else related in some way to it).

Also I was only using the show as an example, never watched it completely as I have only seen clips.
Seriously. This is a work of fiction.

Bérénice Laurent would, IMHO, be an ideal SDP leader and Leader of the Opposition, and maybe even PM. Not to give too much away, ITTL she has been involved in social justice and civil rights campaigns, and was a well-known member of the Detroit State legislature, then the Congress of the Ohio Country before winning the 2018 by-election for the Ville de Détroit constituency after Jacques Conyers' resignation, and then holding it at the 2018 election.

Also, this British Empire has parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, so the lack of a black PM is worse.
I didn’t vote for Bérénice because she’s black, but because I think it’d be fun to have a francophonic PM for Britannia.
When I crunched the numbers, I think about 12-15% of the British population is of Black or African descent. There are more Black British people than French-/Spanish-speaking Britons - and we've had three Francophone PMs and one Hispanophone. Heck we've even had two Dutch-speaking PMs and a New England Gaelic one before a Black PM!

Bérénice Laurent as PM would be interesting because of her stance on many issues, but also because she would be the first Black PM, the first female Francophone, and the first Black Francophone :)

I vote for Isaac Herzog, purely because I want more about whatever the hell is going on with Westralia.
Westralia is... interesting.

I might have a wikibox for Ararat (Jewish majority region in OTL Kimberley) in the next few weeks if I pull my finger out.

Of course, but the funny thing is selection panels within political parties until very recently even Liberal ones all came to the same conclusion The best candidate is always an upper class white English lawyer who went to Eton (or Harrow) and then read PPE at Oxford (Cambridge). Funny you would think that talent might be a little more spread out....
Indeed... we're not exactly representative in either OTL UK or USA... Canada does a bit better IMHO
 
Belgium

LeinadB93

Monthly Donor


Belgium, officially the United Belgian States and historically known as the Belgian Confederation, is a member state of the European Union located in Western Europe, bordered by the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the north, the Rhenish Republic to the east, the Kingdom of the French to the southwest, and the North Sea to the northwest. Covering an area of 30,688 square kilometres with a population of nearly 11 million, Belgium is a multinational state divided into several linguistic and cultural groups, with six official languages, governed under a decentralised parliamentary monarchy composed of six constituent countries. A founding member of the European Union, Belgium's capital city, Brussels, hosts the official seat of the European Commission and the headquarters of many European institutions and international organisations. Historically, Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, earning the moniker the "Battlefield of Europe", a reputation strengthened by both world wars.

Historically, what is now Belgium was part of the northernmost part of Gaul and inhabited by the Belgae peoples. Julius Caesar used the word "Belgium" to describe this region which became a Roman province, Gallia Belgica, in 22 BCE as a result of his conquests. At the time of the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, modern Belgium was inhabited by a mix of Frankish tribes and a more Romanised population, eventually coming under the rule of the Merovingian dynasty and later formed part of the Carolingian Empire. After the Treaty of Verdun in 843 partitioned the Carolingian territories into three kingdoms, most of modern Belgium was briefly part of the Middle Kingdom, later known as Lotharingia, while the coastal county of Flanders became part of West Francia, the predecessor of modern France. In 870, modern Belgian lands briefly became part of the western kingdom until 880 when Lotharingia came under the control of the Holy Roman Empire, dividing modern Belgium between East and West Francia.

Between the 14th and 15th centuries, the fiefdoms that made up what is now Belgium were reunited in the Burgundian Netherlands, which after 1482 became the Habsburg Netherlands when it was inherited Philip the Handsome, later King Felipe I of Spain. In 1556, the Seventeen Provinces were inherited by the grandson of Philip the Handsome, King Felipe II of Spain, becoming known as the Spanish Netherlands. Catholic persecutions, and the despotism of the new monarch, sparked the Dutch Revolt and the Eighty Years' War resulting in the 1581 secession of the Seven United Provinces from the rest of the territory to form the Dutch Republic, while the southern provinces - covering most of modern Belgium - remained with the House of Habsburg. After the extinction of the Spanish Habsburgs and the War of the Spanish Succession, the southern provinces were returned to Austrian control from 1714 onwards. In 1794 during the French Revolutionary Wars, the Low Countries — including territories that were never nominally under Habsburg rule, such as the Prince-Bishopric of Liège — were annexed by the French First Republic, ending Habsburg rule. The Low Countries were unified as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands afer the dissolution of the First French Empire in 1814, following the abdication of Napoleon.

On 25 August 1830, the Belgian Revolution began when riots erupted in Brussels, and uprisings followed elsewhere across the country. The people of the southern provinces were traditionally Roman Catholic, contrasted with the largely Protestant north, and there were high levels of unemployment and industrial unrest among the working classes. A Dutch military intervention in September failed to suppress the revolution and further radicalised its leadership towards secession, and on 4 October 1830 the States-General in Brussels declared independence from the Netherlands. The Southern Provinces formed a provisional government and assembled a national congress, establishing a Catholic, French-speaking, neutral and independent Belgium. The congress chose a constitutional popular monarchy as the form of government for Belgium, but was unable to select an acceptable candidate for head of state. The Dutch appealed to the Great Powers, but at the resulting 1830 London Conference the major European powers recognised Belgian independence. King Willem I of the Netherlands, unsatisfied by the outcome of the conference and refusing to accept Belgian independence, launched an invasion of Belgium in August 1831. The Dutch army, led by the Prince of Orange, advanced deep into Belgian territory, defeating the disorganised resistance and taking advantage of poor harvests, an economic downturn and the general unrest in the country, eventually controlling Antwerp, Limburg and most of Flanders. The Belgian government appealed to the French for military support, and by November the south of the country had been pacified, although Dutch forces were encamped at Leuven outside Brussels and the conflict became bogged down in a stalemate.

In July 1832, the Great Powers of Europe convened a second London Conference to resolve the "Belgian question". The resulting Treaty of London, signed on 21 July 1832, established the Belgian Confederation - an association of semi-autonomous states - under Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen, a scion of the House of Habsburg. The Treaty created seven states within Belgium - the grand duchies of Flanders, Wallonia and Luxembourg, the principalities of Hainaut and Eupen-Malmedy, and the duchies of Limburg and Brabant - each of which had its own monarch chosen or nominated by the Great Powers. On the same day, Archduke Charles took the oath before the National Congress as the "King of the Belgians and President of the Sovereign Confederation", and was granted the Duchy of Brabant, establishing the House of Habsburg-Belgium. Under the terms of the treaty Luxembourg and Limburg were to remain in personal union with the King of the Netherlands, and along with Eupen-Malmedy were also members of the German Confederation. Dutch opposition to the settlement would continue for seven years until the signing of the 1839 Treaty of London that recognised Belgian independence, consolidated the creation of the Confederation and guaranteed the perpetual neutrality of Belgium. Parts of the country, particularly Wallonia and Hainaut, were some of the first areas of continental Europe to participate in the Industrial Revolution, spurring the economic development of the country. Geopolitical developments in the 1860s culminated in the Luxembourg Crisis, and in the aftermath of the collapse of the German Confederation the 1867 Treaty of London recognised the independence of Luxembourg, Limburg and Eupen-Malmedy from the German Confederation and their integral membership in the Belgian Confederation. Economic unrest in Eupen-Malmedy in the 1880s resulted in a brief experiment in republicanism in the state, which lasted from 1888 to 1893.

Political liberalisation and demands for universal male suffrage culminated in the April 1893 general strike, that culminated in a nationwide revolution that transformed the Belgian Confederation into the United Belgian States. Far-reaching reforms transformed Belgium into a federal monarchy with a strong central government, a single Federal Chancellor and a Federal Congress under King Charles II, while the constituent states retained their monarchies and self-government, with the exception of the Duchy of Limburg which became an autonomous country of the Netherlands. Dutch and French became co-offical languages at the federal level, and it would take until the 1970s before the other languages of Belgium gained official federal status. In August 1914, the German Empire invaded Belgium of part of the strategy to attack France, and much of the fighting on the Western Front of the First World War occurred in Wallonia and Luxembourg. This invasion of neutral Belgium caused the British Empire to declare war on Germany and is regarded as one of the main causes of the global war. Belgium emerged from the war in a poor state, although the country had suffered few deaths, with much of its economy and infrastructure devastated and waves of popular violence against collaborators followed the liberation. The first post-war Olympics were held in Antwerp in 1920, symbolising Belgium's surprisingly quick recovery. Throughout the interwar period and into the early Second World War, Belgium tried to pursue a policy of unaligned neutrality but on 10 May 1940 German forces invaded and occupied the country. After 18 days of fighting, the Belgian forces (including the commander-in-chief, King Charles III) surrendered, while the elected government, under Chancellor Hubert Pierlot, escaped to Britain alongwith most of the states' monarchs and heads of government. During the war the eastern states of Luxemborg and Eupen-Malmedy were anexed to Nazi Germany, and more than 40 thousand Belgians were killed.

Immediately after the war, Charles III, who had surrendered himself and the country to the German army in 1940, was released. However, the issue of whether he had betrayed the country and his oath by surrendering, while most government ministers and monarchs of the states had escaped overseas into exile, presented an important constitutional dilemma. Many Belgians felt he had collaborated with Nazi Germany during the war, and with a majority of the population opposing his return the king remained in exile in Switzerland with a regency in place. In 1950, amidst growing unrest, widespread protests and the threat of a general strike, Charles formally abdicated in favour of his cousin, who became King Nicholas I. In the immediate post-war period, Belgium became a leading proponent of Pan-Europeanism, with the foundation of the four European Communities - Coal and Steel, Atomic Energy, Economic, and Defence - in the 1950s that would eventually evolve into the modern European Union. In the 21st century, Belgium is a developed country with an advanced high-income economy and regularly ranks highly in standards of living, healthcare and education.
 
Seriously. This is a work of fiction.
I didn’t mean it to balloon, it just triggered a itch on brain, which wouldn’t shut up until I made the point. Like my issue with Bush earlier in the timeline.

I knew it was a joke, I accepted and understood the joke in context of the TL, but there was just a little voice in the back of my head itching to point of identity politics problem, stopping me from working, making me put something down midway through doing something, etc.

Depending on the topic itching at my brain I can either make a snap respond (example the joke above) or really internalise and mull over topic until it pushes me to the point of complete frustration (Bush).

I probably should from now on write out these brain itching topics on a word instead of just posting them, as while sometimes it just a burning question of “why did X happen”, other times it’s the things above.

Again I apologise, I didn’t mean for it to balloon at all.
 
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