The Long Earth.

Goodreads Book Review.

A rather good read, the diversity of narrative arcs is impressive and refreshing. The cliches which have plagued the genre since its arrival in Hollywood are not found in full. There is no immediately obvious enemy, the greatest threat remains nebulous even on the last page, and the secondary danger explodes into the story late in the novel. As for consistency with the laws of physics, aside from the single suspension of disbelief of ‘the stepper device’ it is flawless. Honestly, the novel reaches beyond the genre into the realm of literature, as a metaphor for the search for identity can be carried across every page. 

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Banana Republics & the CIA, or Why Communism Made Sense.

The phrase Banana Republic comes from a time and place (Latin America late 1800’s – mid 1900’s) where the banana company (United Fruit Company) was more powerful than the government.
 
The United Fruit Company board of directors included the head of the USA CIA. UFC tried to pay $2 500 000 to the president of Honduras, this corruption was exposed by a section of the US government separate from the CIA (when the left hand did not know what the right hand was doing the little man wins, isn’t big government nice?)
 
Other powers of the UFC included;
running the Costa Rican postal service,
preventing specific national governments (Guatemala) from distributing banana plantations to peasants to share in the lucrative international banana trade,
building an entire nations railway network and then destroying it when ceasing operations in the nation (Guatemala again),
inducing government to kill 100’s, perhaps more, of striking workers (Colombia).
 
This is why communism makes sense. To be honest, it is also why certain laissez-faire capitalism makes sense (assuming it fragments monopolisation). The truck system of early English capitalism (from the Franch troquer, perhaps linguistic origin of tucker and tuckshop) illustrates a similar communal-structural failing to that above, but on an entirely different scale.

To relate this to the contemporary ‘centre of the world’, Mr. Trump may reduce ties with the international business community, primarily by reneging on the preliminaries of the TIPP and other major trade deals. This will allow time for mundane individuals and organisations to scrutinise, to plan and to propose meaningful alternatives & developments. It seems unlikely that Mr. Trump will pursue significant actions against the major accounting firms which are the major players in the Panama Paper crimes.

What may also occur is world leaders, specifically Mr. Putin, outwitting Mr. Trump. I anticipate that within his presidency of the United States of America, a serious symbolic diplomatic accord with Russia is reached, but one which materially benefits Russia more than the USA. This is due to the greater cooperation between big business and government in Russia,see: Gazprom, although this is not entirely restricted to Russia as shown above or shown here. This accord could be the renegotiation of trade law or infrastructure across the Bering Straits.