[LMB] OT: If only the Cetagandans had operated like this

Tel teldreaming at gmail.com
Mon Jan 24 23:02:17 GMT 2011

On Sun, Jan 23, 2011 at 1:48 AM, Royce Day <sirtalen at gmail.com> wrote:
> Presumably the Cetas actually did do a lot of infrastructure building
> on Barrayar (spaceports for one) but if they had payed attention to
> stuff like that, perhaps the Barrayaran resistance would have had a
> much harder time.
> -Royce in MD

Mmm. Not so sure about that.

Overwhelmingly oppressive dictatorships with strong, loyal militaries
aren't that vulnerable to popular uprising, because they're willing to
kill as many as necessary to avoid that (see: North Korea). It's the
half-assed or liberalizing dictatorships that tend to go down. It's
not that Gorbachev was -worse- than Stalin...

The fact that the Cetas eventually backed down on Barrayar, and backed
down again on Marilac implies that they're not as committed to
oppression and conquest at all costs as many on-List would make them
out to be.

It's stated in the books that Vordarian's District is urbanized,
industrialized, and the most economically important District on
Barrayar because they collaborated with the Cetas, while Vorkosigan's
District is a bit of a hellhole for the opposite reason.

The bracketing local alternatives to the Cetas were a TOI-style
Barrayaran administration and Mad Yuri. The invaders may well have
been better at peacetime administration than both for your average
Barrayaran. They -were- perhaps a catastrophe for the High Vor, who
profited a great deal from the traditional system. But the High Vor
aren't all of Barrayar, even though they command traditional loyalties
and have a traditional monopoly on violence and so on.

The Cetas were, however, foreign. And parts of Barrayar are really
violent and tradition-bound. That was the issue. And they didn't
manage to completely take out the previous government. If Dorca and
sons had been captured or killed early on and oaths to them
subsequently rendered irrelevant, it's hard to imagine the Vor
successfully rallying around anyone else.


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