20150531

The Great Divide of 2025...

The world has changed, some say for the better, but the outcome has been a harsh pill to swallow. In December 2019 Congress passed an order to create the great barriers one to the north of the United States along the border with Canada, the other along the border with Mexico. Everyone metre of these borders was covered by a an armoured auto-gun and these were virtually indestructable. Alaska was abandoned as a state, as were Hawaii and the protectorates of San JUan and the U.S. Virgin Islands as the Aquatic Defense Systems (ADS) were implemented along the east coast, Gulf of Mexico, and the west coast as far north as the Strait of Juan de Fuca. When these systems were completed in 2029, the only access points in the United States of America were where the high-speed Transcontinental Transit Tube connections at New York, Chicago, and New Los Angeles. The T3, as people called it, was the only way in or out of what Americans called the Dismembered States of America.

New York and New Los Angeles, which was just over the California border from Reno, Nevada, were glorious cities, and Chicago while it had been given sufficient funding for its infrastructure and beautification, well it opted for more inclusive options and after the great crash of 2025, and was mostly overrun as Chicago became the last hope for folks in the mid-west and southern states. The walls that were supposed to have been built under then Mayor Ford, were not built. Rather, the cities raised train systems were turned into subways, an odd obsession of the Mayor. The walls that were built after his removal from office protected the T3 port, the one remaining link with Canada, to Toronto. The military used the same technology around this port as divided the two countries. 15-story tall walls, with massive automatic gatling guns that could saw damn-near anything in half long before it got close enough to do damage. Their range of fire overlapped and protected the city, the port from the great hoards that roamed the wasteland of the United States.

People across the USA suggested these must be end-times, and the crazed and religious found themselves on the same side, forming a militia that aimed to protect themselves and claiming they were the saved. They had no idea that the rest of the world went on without them.

In Canada, as the concerns of economic meltdown transformed into a radicalization of the cause and the few naturalized members of the 1% in the country recognised what they loved about Canada was the people and their resolve to be, well, Canadian. The school systems were changed, embracing the teachings of the First Nations, the indigenous peoples, teaching survival skills and how to live off the land. Larger cities such as Toronto, Montreal, and East Vancouver were industrialized and the general population became thankful as they saw the wall that separated them from their neighbours to the south. It served as much as a tool to keep people out of the US, as it did to ensure the problems they created remained inside their walls. A few escaped that fate, but those autoguns took care of them before they hit land in Canada.

Canada had been ruled by a new political party that leaned neither left nor right, straddling the line as best it could for a fair society. They had worked with the former leaders to implement this new school system and WageShare a program that ensured no one was left behind. Even the most incapable person was now able to live comfortably and contribute to the economy. Those that had become old or infirm were guaranteed safe haven and accommodation in the major cities, able to work call-centre like jobs, often from home and on a guaranteed  living income. Lotteries were held weekly, not to raise funds, but to ensure people had some joy in their lives, people would win credits that could be applied to any item in the Hudson's Bay Catalogue, the national store, owned and operated by the government since 2025. HBC had been a Canadian-owned icon until being acquired by a US company, but when the economy started to fail and retailers across the globe failed to adapt to the advent of Internet shopping.

The Canadian government chose to buy the company and integrate it into its social revolution making the first entirely electronic, government issued, currency a practical solution in this new world. The artisan and New First Nations community that populated Canada's rural and wilderness areas were able to trap, hunt, or create products for sale in HBC as a supplement to their Minimum Guaranteed Income. Socially, the Minimum Guaranteed Income, or MGI, served as a tool that ensured those that could work, did. It became a social faux-pas to live off MGI alone.

People were taught that if some was infirm or over the age of 65 they were deserving of the MGI, as any Canadian is, but if the someone was not at retirement age, and was not incapacitated, they were expected to work. They would always have their MGI, but people learned to exclude people that were not contributors. Even if you were between jobs and not in work rehabilitation therapy, you were expected to be involved in volunteer efforts, either locally helping other citizens, or overseas with one of Canada's various aid organisations. Rehabilitation therapy was a work training a discrete occupational therapy program offered by the Canadian Centres for Mental and Physical Health, you were expected to attend this program after any termination, whether by choice or not. The service helped ascertain whether you needed any assistance with the career change. The program was designed and functioned as a tool to ensure employees were happy and well treated, and that companies had support with new hires.

Everyone received the basic MGI weekly, but an employer could allocate from their coffers additional funds as a reward for higher skills or hard work. Every business signed up for the Canadian Profit Sharing Plan, it was required by law, and National Bonus Day shared that fund with every working or retired Canadian. In reality of half of the plan's funding supported the bonuses for the people, a good portion of the fund went to helping fund Canada's Universities and Colleges, as well as innovation projects of which Canada became a significant world power in.

Life in Canada was such a drastic contrast to the US, but it wasn't for the lack of trying. Peacekeeping missions from Canada were allowed into the US, but the only viable solution was found to be strategic air drops. Canada's air force was entirely peacekeeping and DART related, offering assistance anywhere in the world at a moment's notice. Too often that support was required in the US and airdrops of medical supplies, food, and well trained, but unarmed personnel put themselves in harm's way to try to make things better in what the Americans called The Great Divide.

With global warming behind them the usable land in the US had decreased significantly. whole cities and a few states were abandoned under the rising waters. Florida was gone for the most part, as was much of the east coast, New York City was walled not only from the land, but from the sea, as they feared the worst. The land remaining The Great Divide was the vast wasteland, or what some call the re-naturalized lands, that were the cities and communities across the country. Aside from the few remaining metropolii, the urban landscapes of the other cities were destroyed by the U.S. Army's Corps of Engineers in what the government called the collection. In 2030, the government, having implemented all of their urban containment zones, where the wealthy could live in peace behind great walls and no-go zones. The Anonymous Occupiers, those outside those walls were loaded onto traditional trains and send to the Greater Denver Area (GDA), now a prison camp, but people didn't learn that until they arrived. The plans had been in the works for years, ever since the Denver Airport was built.

Millions of people were shipped off to a new utopia in the midwest, few were heard from again, not really. The Department of Civil Peace had graciously accommodated the new residents of the GDA, they were moved into these scenic high-rise communities that face the mountains. Each apartment came with all the amenities and absolutely no need to leave their complex. In fact, while they could leave their complex, on foot, the roads leading away from the complex seemed to have constant, though varying, catastrophic events prevent departure "at this time."

The newcomers who wrote home, to friends and family had nothing but great news to tell, and after a month or so of correspondence the DoCP had enough information to automate responses. The Artificial Intelligence and Surveillance System that the DoCP operated was keylogging all of the correspondence and could not take over for the real person, their communications were cut off, they were knocked out, en masse, and moved into the chambers below the Denver Airport. The remains were turned over to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Energy for disposal.

The system was so effective that the lower income areas of urban centres has people volunteering for relocation to the Denver Skies Community as it was advertised. Over two hundred and forty million people moved to Denver, into wonderful furnished apartments with full-time jobs and a paid month off before starting work. The trains left every day at 8:30AM, they returned too, in the dead of night. No one who moved to Denver Skies ever returned, but for years they shared their stories, maintained their blogs, and kept up with family and friends on social media through the grace and kindness of the Department of Civil Peace.

The usual chatter of social media changed after Facebook went out of business in the US, the media was controlled well enough that no one knew the reality, that they secreted their employees out of the U.S. to Sweden one night after building a new location there. The media in the U.S. didn't talk of that, not in the Great Divide, the free US didn't hear about those things. Though after Facebook left the US, they didn't tell people they moved either. They knew they'd relocated after the San Andreas incident, but no one stopped to consider where their operations were.

Life went on after socio-economic crash of the U.S.A. Through some bit of luck and coincidence, North and South Korea found peace after their leader Kim Jung-Un died of a brain tumour. The successor was a peaceful heir and had been disgusted by the state's activities and treatment of people. They knew to keep quiet and bide their time, playing a part and accepting the grooming for leadership as it came. Once in power he opened up talks with South Korea and the United Nations. They disbanded the army and opened the gates to disarmament. Beijing considered this an opportunity to move on North Korea, but this was quickly ruled out as ALL of the members United Nations moved in to build North Korea's infrastructure and a humanitarian effort. Teachers from across the globe were flown in to help with retraining and occupational therapists from Canada were sent in with the DART teams to help prepare this once sheltered people from the culture shock they will be facing.

The United Nations, after moving from NYC, became a global relief and mediation organisation, offering top-notch and unbiased negotiators to resolve conflicts around the world. They finally reached a peace with the Islamic State Militants and the other Islamic extremists in 2034, it was much easier with the political spirit of the 1& out of the way.

You see, the 1% walled themselves up in those few urban protected zones, and forgot that the rest of the world could not be controlled, that the rest of the world was watching. It came too late for the 247 million Americans killed in the Denver death chambers, but the observers that went into the U.S. those fearless few that left other countries as peacekeepers, they knew they would never come home, the landed, did what they could to help the residents of The Great Divide and either joined their communities or died as the attempted to return to their homes.

The United Nations was more than just a negotiation solution, they also provided, as a last resort, they military solution to some problems. In 2039, 10 years after the American Cull began, the U.N. gave up on negotiations. The order was given and those that could escape on the T3 made their way to Canada, Japan, or Europe's capital, Brittany Nouveau. They were incarcerated until the trials. The urban centres of the US were leveled by cluster bombs delivered from the UN's Global Defense Space Stations. The cluster bombs were non-nuclear, high-speed and designed with stealth technologies that allowed the devices penetration through the automated defence systems. You see the 1% that controlled the US had not seen the value in the personnel of the military and designed them out of the equation, after the automated defence systems were set up across the US the soldiers were the first wave to enjoy the new life of the Denver Skies Community. The Department of Civil Peace disbanded the armed forces and cycled the soldiers, unit by unit, into the Denver chambers below the Denver Airport. They didn't see it coming. The train ride in was long and as it went into the tunnel headed for downtown Denver they left their lives behind. After descending under the city, the gas started, the unwanted passed out and entered a deep sleep, the tunnel veered east, toward the Airport.

The trains were long continous cars with smooth designs, flowing and modern. The trains were propelled magnetic levitation and were very fast, but the real design key was that the front and rear of the trains could open up, and they did so as they passed through a vast water-filled chamber under the airport. The bodies of the unwanted were flushed from the train, the train was put through an automated wash and then shunted to the drying yards near the eastern-most runway of the airport. They would dry in the hot sun and be ready for their return to the Denver Skies Terminal that night.

The bodies were collected through a process of waterflow, conveyors, and finally mincers. Nothing was wasted. The bodies were shredded and mixed with a nitrogen rich mulch and spread across the agrifields in Nebraska and Kansas, the two remain protected states, also walled, and harvested by machines that were designed to save the world.

Sadly, the world didn't want food grown by machines, they found their roots, as it were, and when the U.N. began working with countries on better growing options and profit sharing lessons learned in Canada, Europe, and Russia were applied the need for manufactured food dropped. People had new opportunities to eat healthier and the education needed for each citizen in the developing world. In reality the whole world was developing, again, and working together to build a New Earth, on earth.

The U.N. saw it fitting that the bombs fell on those urban centres on July 4th, 2039, a new day of independance. The UN DART and peacekeeping forces went in in the following days to ensure the innocent lives were not lost. The bombs were not lethal, but rather meant to disable systems. They were electromagnetic pulse bombs that crippled these centres and allowed for a mission to dethrone the 1%-ers. On July 4th 2040 The few million free Americans were able to return to the urban centres and begin the re-building of America, for the people, by the people. The UN's DART teams had cleaned up the after math of the bombs and removed all weapons systems. The cities' infrastructure systems for water, sewers, and hydro were rebuilt with the latest green technologies. Even IKEA pitched in as they did with any DART mission with their economical and well-packed home decor. Yes, the UN even has deployable IKEA furniture builders. They always left a few allen keys for use new residents, just in case.