[LMB] Cetaganda: Twin Empires and the Occupation

M. Haller Yamada thefabmadamem at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 9 01:20:23 BST 2010


Jeff S.:> 1. Continued migration from Earth to the Cetas; and

Tel replies: Yes, I agree, but I think this requires them to be much less xenophobic and militant in the past, and is an argument against the haut=empire being older than a couple centuries.

Micki: What is the nature of migration? Arguably, a certain super-power could be called xenophobic (*cough, Arizona*) and aggressively militant (*cough, Nobel Peace Prize winner still sending troops to Iraq and Afghanistan*), yet people still want to migrate there. I think the same could be said about many other countries -- people are migrating to Great Britain (presented in the press as having a strong xenophobic component, and very militant past), Japan, South Korea, China . . . . People don't really seem to pay attention to the government if they think a good life is available. But, I have no text ev that says, "I'm a-goin' to Cetaganda where the living is good!". So, it's up to the individual's imagination. 

****BTW, I don't want to get into a discussion of US politics; I know people can post perfectly good arguments for and against the policies I mentioned, but we don't want to do that here.******

Tel: See, I don't think you fully comprehend how high natural population growth can be despite all that. An ancestor of mine was a Norwegian pioneer b. 1777 who farmed what by certain definitions is around the most marginal farmland in the world. He had one hundred and thirty-three grandchildren -that we know about- within the course of less than a century. One of his sons himself had ninety-five grandchildren.

Tel again: Show me an modern Iowan who can beat that. (well, a non-Amish Iowan who doesn't donate sperm) Modernized cultures don't -do- that. 

Micki: well, I can match that anecdote because one of my grandfathers came from a family of 12, and my father himself was one of six. But . . . these are the *survivors*. Isn't it possible that for every family like ours, there were one (or two, or a dozen) families that ended in the graveyard from flu, childbirth, starvation, plain bad luck? I don't have any statistics, I just remember visiting old graveyards with everyone dead. *Perhaps* Barrayar didn't have epidemics (but I think they must have). However, for every family like Lem's, there was a family like Harra's where only one baby survived out of the many that were born. I suppose by the time we see Barrayar, most of the genetic problems have been weeded out . . . except that Ma Muttlich was still having genetic issues (yeah, of both kinds) a mere 20-25 years ago. 

About the maple trees: I think the maple sugar was simply a very nice by-product. The main use of the maple trees would have been the leaves for compost, and of course, the lumber would have been extremely useful to have. They wouldn't have dared to replace too many maple forests with cropland, because that would simply have limited the population in the future. Horses, much the same thing. Compost machines that happened to be very handy for work and warring. I wouldn't be surprised if Barrayar had a wonderful line of chickens, and possibly oak trees with edible acorns. 

All machines for turning sunshine and minerals into something humans can use more directly. 

Micki




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