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Old 04-16-2018, 10:22 AM   #11
johndallman
 
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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Originally Posted by Phantasm View Post
This would be on the north end of Lake Vic (head-waters of the Nile River, btw), with two much larger nations bordering it (and each other).
And travel on Lake Victoria is fairly easy, so you need some reason why those larger nations don't want the territory. Aha, you could use a Bir Tawil situation, to keep them off, and have the population of the area be people who are seeking refuge from the various conflicts in the area.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:18 PM   #12
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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And travel on Lake Victoria is fairly easy, so you need some reason why those larger nations don't want the territory.
On the other hand territorial states (as opposed to nations) are a fairly new thing to this region of the world, and their boundaries are all set by colonial politics with little connection to the truth on the ground. It would not altogether surprise me there are still a few villages along these borders that *don't know* what state they are officially in, though it's getting somewhat unlikely. Half a century ago it wouldn't have been much of a stretch at all for a tribe of tens of thousands of people with no real interest in the outside world to rule themselves and mostly ignore the guys from two or three different surrounding governments who occasionally show up and try to convince them they should pay taxes or set up poling stations for the official election. Isolationists after all aren't making any real trouble, and it's not like the newly independent African states don't have places that are to absorb their attention.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:26 AM   #13
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

The "don't know what country they are in" approach sounds the most valid to me. They will have some minor geographic obstacles, enough outside contact to have enough guns to not get immediately run off, and they can live in blissful ignorance of their political standing until they are all suddenly millionaires.
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Old 04-18-2018, 01:13 PM   #14
David Johnston2
 
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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On the other hand territorial states (as opposed to nations) are a fairly new thing to this region of the world, and their boundaries are all set by colonial politics with little connection to the truth on the ground. It would not altogether surprise me there are still a few villages along these borders that *don't know* what state they are officially in, though it's getting somewhat unlikely. Half a century ago it wouldn't have been much of a stretch at all for a tribe of tens of thousands of people with no real interest in the outside world to rule themselves and mostly ignore the guys from two or three different surrounding governments who occasionally show up and try to convince them they should pay taxes or set up poling stations for the official election. .
Not when they're on a major waterway.
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Old 04-21-2018, 03:10 AM   #15
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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Not when they're on a major waterway.
Thing is, even on major waterways there's locations where even the shallowest draft boats can be damaged by what's under the water line. Mind, I don't know what Lake Vic is like in that area near the Kenya/Uganda border....
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Old 05-14-2018, 06:22 PM   #16
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

Isn't insularity a necessary part of the slur "banana republic"? If they packed enough juice to play the field in a major way no one would call them that.

Admittedly there are complications as several otherwise small states have a key influence on some rare commodity.

Also the word implies a stereotype of instability and political incompetence.
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Old 05-14-2018, 06:26 PM   #17
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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On the other hand territorial states (as opposed to nations) are a fairly new thing to this region of the world, and their boundaries are all set by colonial politics with little connection to the truth on the ground. It would not altogether surprise me there are still a few villages along these borders that *don't know* what state they are officially in, though it's getting somewhat unlikely. Half a century ago it wouldn't have been much of a stretch at all for a tribe of tens of thousands of people with no real interest in the outside world to rule themselves and mostly ignore the guys from two or three different surrounding governments who occasionally show up and try to convince them they should pay taxes or set up poling stations for the official election. Isolationists after all aren't making any real trouble, and it's not like the newly independent African states don't have places that are to absorb their attention.
It's not as if that was unknown in Europe. Several clans straddled the English and Scottish border and tangled any pursuing posse up in red tape when they went rustling(technically the victims could chase them; it was a little more work to arrange a Warden Rode on the other side of the border).
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:26 AM   #18
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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Isn't insularity a necessary part of the slur "banana republic"? If they packed enough juice to play the field in a major way no one would call them that.
Quite the opposite. The proper use of the term is to describe states dependent on the export of a single commodity to provide the money to prop up a nearly sham government - the original example being the various governments of Honduras bought by the United Fruit Company in the 1890s and 1900s. Being completely export dependent and foreign dominated these are anything *but* insular.
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Old 05-23-2018, 06:14 PM   #19
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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Quite the opposite. The proper use of the term is to describe states dependent on the export of a single commodity to provide the money to prop up a nearly sham government - the original example being the various governments of Honduras bought by the United Fruit Company in the 1890s and 1900s. Being completely export dependent and foreign dominated these are anything *but* insular.

However those types of governments are "insular" in the sense that no one has ambitions outside the local factional politics with the exception of relations to local foreigners. There is simply not enough resources available to make ambition practical. In a banana republic the quarrel between generalissimo X and the Y liberation front or the Z drug cartel are far more important then familiar old-fashioned Great Power politics. Foreigners are important insofar as they are in country or nearby or directly related to the economy. But one cannot picture them dreaming of eating a whole continent in a gulp and if they tried they will be whacked without anyone thinking about it.
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Old 05-24-2018, 11:13 AM   #20
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Default Re: [World-Building] Hypothetical insular banana republic - why insular?

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However those types of governments are "insular" in the sense that no one has ambitions outside the local factional politics with the exception of relations to local foreigners. There is simply not enough resources available to make ambition practical. In a banana republic the quarrel between generalissimal X and the Y liberation front or the Z drug cartel are far more important then familiar old-fashioned Great Power politics. Foreigners are important insofar as they are in country or nearby or directly related to the economy. But one cannot picture them dreaming of eating a whole continent in a gulp and if they tried they will be whacked without anyone thinking about it.
So a state is either a banana republic or a Great Power?
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