Discussion in 'Never Ending Stories' started by EQandcivfanatic, Oct 17, 2012.
OOC: It has been redacted for reasons I'll keep to myself.
I think the greatest thing about North Africa in this game is that everybody is continually getting ripped off by it.
Even if the wording was not express in the Treaty, the whole purpose of the Confederation essentially surrendering itself to my soldiers was to enforce some sort of tariff reduction. It would be absurd for my government, officially or not, to bypass that opportunity. No such deal exists with Occitania, but Germany economically dominates the the splinter-states of Spain and the Confederation. That was the purpose of giving the splinter-states German economic protection, and allowing them to trade with one another with impunity. That was a nice way of saying "you are to lower tariff rates to a point in which German businesses can come in, and insure British and Brazilian businesses stay out." That is the way I have been treating western Europe, and that is why the NPC's so willingly followed me into the void of embargo. Spain is an outlier, as are you, and it could be argued that Paris-Burgundy is as well, though the understanding we have reached is that Germany will help pay for a bulk of it's loans, if they follow the splinter-states into the German economic sphere.
Also, I was in the process of writing a story when this whole North African business went down. I tried to amend it to a point where it still makes some sense in regards to the situation. Changing what I originally had, Drexler lied about the actual nature of the deal; he just wanted an excuse to fire Galland. Realistically, he heard murmurs within the British and Italian government, but the lack of attentiveness that Galland showed was enough for his firing.
"Can I fetch you a drink, Herr Galland?" Drexler said, motioning to the table between the two men. On it's top were two glasses, and one unopened bottle of some high quality UPRA liquor. "Negro whisky; it's much better than you'd believe them able to do."
"Sure, I'll have a glass." Drexler was not a man of many vices. He didn't smoke, or drink. He was no womanizer, his wife was rather plain, but adequate for her purposes. What he did do, however was gamble. And over the past few years, he learned to know when to take winning bets. All the same, his requirements for subordinates were simple; they must be damn good at their job, and preferably, they must have some sort of deficiency. Galland had both. This time, the latter wasn't as useful as it normally was. As he took a sip of his drink, he noticed Drexler left the second cup empty.
"Nothing for you Herr President?" By now, Drexler was putting the cork back into the bottle.
"I don't drink before the afternoon." It was a thinly veiled question of character. An awkward pause ended with the clank of Galland's full cup on the table.
"Why did you call me here, Herr President?
"Did your office get the cables from Britain?"
"They're still be deciphered. I was going to look at them within the next few hours." A clear lie.
"My office has received them, and deciphered them already. They were pretty conventional codes. Take a look." Drexler threw the papers at Galland, who started to pick them up, only to stop after reading the first page.
"They did what?"
"Tell me, this isn't serious."
"All of North Africa?"
"So the paper says." Drexler turned to look out the window for a second. By the time he fixed his gaze back on Galland, he realized the man's cup of whisky was practically empty. "The only question that I have Herr Galland, is how you weren't aware of our dear Italian friend's moves."
Galland start stammering "I have been busy sir, the Parisians and their debts, the Indians have been jamming our lines with messages and message corrections."
"And at no point did you get an inkling that the Italian government was interested in selling it's North African colonies. At no point, did your dear friend, Sig Ricci attempt to mention his nation's intent to drop ninety-five percent of his colonial empire?"
"Her Drexler, es tu mir leid, I didn't even contemplate the Italian government's willingness to do that."
"That is your one job Galland, your one job." Drexler's voice was raising. A rarity, truly. He had become well known for being a rather quiet type. "When the Gehiems tell me that you're out boozing, rather than reading messages from New Zealand, I can deal with it. When the Geheims tell me, you're too hung over to properly respond to deals proposed by the Occitans, I can ignore that. But when you can't contact the Germany's most valuable ally, to insure that they don't do the one thing that we would hope they not do, that is when I question my ability to appoint my ministers correctly. You used to be damn good Galland; now you're just a damned embarrassment."
"Herr Drexler," Galland started "please allow-"
"Save it. You're going on vacation to Hamburg. While you're there, you'll be sending me your letter of resignation. Leave."
Galland started to attempt to say something, but there was no point. Shoulders sagging, he stood up and began walking towards the door. As his hand reach for the knob, he heard Drexler. "Galland."
He turned, and saw Drexler stepping towards him, holding the bottle of whisky.
"Take this. It seems appropriate." Drexler turned and walked towards his desk, without taking another look at the door. By the time he heard a reaffirming slam[i/], signalling Galland's exit, he was already on the phone with his secretary.
"Elke. The Ambassador to Scandinavia, Augustus Rolft. Contact him for me."
"Yes Herr President."
Drexler waited, and slowly let his frustrations disperse. Galland was a good Minister. Luckily, he wouldn't be hard to replace. He stared at his phone until the red light flashed, and the ringer started.
"Herr President, this is Augustus Rolft. Please, how may I be of service?"
"Italy seems to be intent on selling North Africa to Britain. They've waffled a bit, but Herr Galland was too drunk to handle the situation. I did. If you were in his position what would you have done?
"To be frank, Herr President, there would not have been a situation to begin with."
Drexler paused, and smiled.
"Congratulations, Herr Minister of Foreign Affairs. I've been following your file closely for some time, and this was the opportunity I was waiting for. I will be sending you a plane from Munich in twelve hours. Elke will help work out the details with you. Be ready to work when you get here." Drexler put the phone down before Rolft could say anything. Galland was great at his job. There was nothing about Rolft that led Drexler to believe that he couldn't be better.
He sighed, and leaned back in his chair. He was still grinning.
Everything went better than expected.
I think enough has been said about this and we can move on.
You see, I am aware of German businessmen being treated well in Catalonia, for example, but Catalonia is under reconstruction, so that makes sense regardless of your supposed understandings with the government. You also make a good point about the willingness of states to join the embargo, but as with before, I'm hesitant to believe the economic situation is as you described without update based or treaty based evidence (it would hardly be fair to other players if all this economic revolutionizing was happening somehow in secret).
So to amend my answer to Immaculate: there are no treaties, but there are "understandings" of some form, which may or may not have large economic sway.
EQ might clear some things up, next time he pops in. I just would be hard-pressed to believe that, as the Treaty writer, something as major as tariff reductions in favor of German businesses would not have happened.
We will of course accept your embassy requests. As for measures to improve trade we are willing to look into it. Our government is still transitioning to becoming an independent state. There are many matters we have on our plates right now. If you have ideas please do not hesitate to send it to us. All proposals will be carefully considered.
We are saddened you decided to take such a hard-line position. In the last few troubling years we have had a very positive and working relationship. At the very least you should have privately conversed with us before making such a public and provocative statement. Our government is working with Poitou to work on some possible solutions to resolve this dispute. It is not simple as you are the successor state and gain everything. There are many Norman businesses with investments and private holdings in those colonies. Hopefully, we can work something out that respects these prior economic arrangements.
We did pledge to help pay off the debts held as a result of the Rhine-Rhone War in the interests of fairness. In return we hope that you will be reasonable and make some concessions regarding the status of the colonies.
Welcome! As others have said, you need 5 posts before you can send PMs, which is quite easy to achieve.
As for NESing in general, I'd suggest also admiring from afar N3S III / End of Empires. That's one of the games that's been going on for a long time, and it has a very rich player-generated history. My personal favorite of NESes is hands-down SysNES2, but that might take a bit of effort to understand, and without understanding you can hardly admire.
That makes absolutely no sense. If the wording was not express in the treaty, the states the treaty applied to are in no way forced to go out of their way to please you. You follow the treaty you signed, not the treaty you wish you had signed. The treaty in no way says members of the Pact have to bring tariffs on German and Italian goods to a lower level than those on British goods; in fact, it in no way says that members of the Pact have to reduce tariffs any significant amount either.
Then why did you not put it in the treaty?
It would be much simpler if we just had a written treaty with specifics outlined that we could point to. In fact, considering its important to nation development and game play- it should be required. If it exists and i have overlooked can you provide a link?
That said, because of you well developed infrastructure and industry, just having lower tariffs across the board between the treaty members would already be in Germany's favor because you can simply out-compete the less well developed, or more splintered nations you are trading with. You wouldn't need to specifically word it to favor Germany (and by avoiding this temptation you would also avoid looking like a dick)- your relative wealth and production base would be all you need.
Remember also that the list of signatories is limited. I am not sure it includes the 'off-shoot nations' (EQ can reveal) but if we thought it was useful to us, we would be more inclined to sign it- if for no other reason then to draw us closer to our benefactor and liberator. If it was obviously abusive- then we would not.
Sorry for the confusion.
I didn't say anything about the relationship of tariffs between British goods, and German goods. Under the Treaty Germany is entitled to economically protect the industries of the splinter states. If dealings signed with British companies threatened the economic viability of the splinter-states, and their relationship with Germany, the Reich has every reason to consider the treaties signed with Britain an infringement in the Treaty. The Treaty Catalonia, and the other Spanish splinter-states haven't been called into question by the German government, as, while it's not looked on favorably by the government, it's certainly doesn't warrant the German government to do anything aside from roll it's eyes. And yes, the treaty expressly encourages tariffs lowered between the splinter-states and one another. That is not something again that I can enforce, nor would I enforce, as I frankly don't care about tariffs on goods from Normandy to Paris-Burgundy. Nor was that even part of the discussion. That fact remains that tariffs in between Germany and the splinter-states from Spain and the Confederation are far lower than they were before the war. Attempting to claim anything otherwise is completely absurd.
It was included in the Treaty. Very clearly. Read it before you attempt to find loopholes in it, or argue over the finer points with me. Also what wasn't was revolved with the splinter-states post-treaty privately. Thus why we had this same exact discussion an update or so ago.
From what I understand from this, is exactly the point I'm making. Tariffs exist between Germany and these nations. But the sky-high tariffs that existed prior to the war are gone. The splinter-states didn't just as a whole adopt previous Confederation economic stances. They're entirely new states, and as a whole, started out with low tariffs on German goods. Since I managed to take the Ruhr, and a whole lot of French industrial lands the ability of these states to really survive while maintaining the previously sky-high tariffs would be questionable. They can't just pretend the war never happened, and go on shutting out German businesses. If they did that, I imagine they would have struggled economically, and it would have been mentioned in the update. If the wording of the treaty is ambiguous it's for the sake of allowing the German government, and associated nations to hammer out the details as they pop up.
The entire purpose of that part of the treaty isn't so other nations would be immediately edged out of these territories, it's just so that German businesses had a fair chance in competing with already establish Brazilian businesses, which, from my understanding with EQ, were quit substantial.
OOC: Everyone should have just left North Africa to the Arabs.
IC: To: The World
Sudan is pleased to announce the formation of an independent Egyptian Nation this year. We hereby guarantee the independence of Egypt and look forward to cooperating with their nation.
Also, for the sake of it, so we can stop having the same argument;
Important parts bolded. I don't see how that could be any more clear.
lurker's comment: What I was under the impression of, when I signed the treaty, was that the Confederation or its successors were agreeing to reduce tariffs to an extent, but primarily to an extent to be determined by their own collective discretion (i.e. if they wanted to, they could reduce them by some miniscule amount) but of course any such decision would be influenced by the areas of German discretion in the treaty (i.e. that Germany, within limits, could vary its length of partial occupation, could withhold subsidies, etc.). The treaty, as written, falls a long way short of indicating that the French markets are anywhere near opening the floodgates to German goods, especially given how high tariffs had been pre-war, and in fact there's no implausibility whatsoever in tariffs being lower to British goods, for instance, than to German and Italian goods.
I should add that the tariffs in place with Occitania before and during the war were miniscule, almost as small as tariffs can be while still remaining in existence. Therefore there is no way that German/ex-Confederate tariffs are going to be considerably lower, at any rate, than Occitanian/ex-Confederate tariffs, because that would be mathematically impossible (i.e. that would mean that German tariffs would have to be non-existent).
I do think as I lurk that TLK is taking a line with the treaty that is not entirely borne out by the text, and that is of course his playerly prerogative to do IC and, if he likes, to make the French states jump when he says to at his discretion, IC, with all the tools in his arsenal, fear, surprise, economic necessity, and whatever else. However, I do think that, OOC, from the perspective of reasonable objectivity, there should be no presumption that the French states have reduced tariffs with Germany by any more than the minimum necessary to keep to the posted letter of the treaty, unless said French states have actually ordered that in their orders.
I hope that this is helpful and not considered an intrusion by anyone, but I feel that what I say may provide a somewhat neutral and/or authoritative perspective on the matter.
From: The Imperial German Union
To: Whomever it May Concern
We are pleased to announce that we have made a special agreement with the United States of America to supply us with some of it's abundant agriculture. We also fully intend to completely forgo the usage of the Panama Canal in the wake of Colombia's recent unnecessary tariff raise. Our friends in the United Kingdom were kind enough to lower prices on the Suez, so we fully intend to redirect all traffic through there. We implore our friends and allies across Eurasia to do the same on both counts.
Spoiler Story Number 3 :
Augustus Rolft had terrible headache, and it seemed unlikely that the discomfort would dissipate any time soon. Rolft was at a conference with a few delegated members of the Parisian government sent to clear the air between Munich and the recent anti-German elections in Paris. He had already greeted several of the delegates, and managed to listen to some of their criticisms of the recent embargo, and fears of Brazilian action against both West and Central Africa. Before he spoke, he took a deep breath, as if to plan out a way to make the conversation go the way in which he want it to go.
He looked out at the delegates, cleared his throat, and smiled in spite of their looks of distrust and general apathy. "Well gentlemen, since we have already brushed past the formality of introductions and whatever pleasantries may accompany such rituals, I am please to firstly, make your acquaintance. I am Augustus Rolft, new Foreign Secretary for the German Reich, previous ambassador to Scandinavia, and veteran of several campaigns that happened too far away, and long ago that I wish to remember." He laughed. None of the Parisians did.
"Now, I am well aware that you are hesitant to work so closely with the government that had brought yours to the brink of destruction. Hesitance is understandable. The responsibility of helping you see the kindness and reason behind German action in regards to the recent unpleasantries with the South Americans has fallen squarely on my shoulders, an honor for which I am most pleased to commit to." One of the lead ambassadors made a motion, as if to speak, but robotically Rolft held his hand up.
"You gentlemen, and I emphasis that word, have been hammering the Imperial Foreign Ministry with quite the number of requests, demands and worries the past few weeks. Contrary to whatever the previous "administration", if I may, might have done in regards to your issues please summarily forget. I wish to speak to your personally on the matters you have brought to me so we can both part our separate ways and meet again, hopefully under less duress. I am firstly, well aware of your requests to give you loans to pay off your debts to Vinland. Consider it finished; the last thing we wish is for any heated conflict with our pan-Atlantic friends.
The same man who attempted to speak before tried his hand again, only to be silenced by another motion by the still smiling Rolft. "Please, just a minute."
"On the issue of the general embargo of any and all Brazilian goods as a consequence of their recent actions against both the Kongo Society, and the general peace of Europe for the last.. oh what was it? Two or three decades now? The Imperial government has made it very clear to your government that the complicit support of the Parisian government is not only important for this to ideal pan-Eurasian-embargo-of-Brazilian-goods-arrangement to be achieved, but quite frankly required. After all, we are largely doing this for your benefit, since your previous refusal to so much as allow the German government to glance towards your African colonies." He laughed again. Everyone else remained silent.
"And so I won't threaten you, or do anything absurd. We have thoroughly beaten your forces just a few months ago, and it wouldn't do our cause very much good if we forced anything on you. We won't. We fully understand that under the finer points of the Treaty of St. Gall, that your ability to create and make decisions for the betterment of your people is fully guaranteed; you are not our puppets. You are free and independent men that should, or rather must act in accordance with the benefits of your people in mind." At this point Rolft stood up, holding a black telephone in one hand, and set it on the table.
"To get the questions out of the way; this is arguably the second most secure phone in the entirety of the Union."
"That being said, I shall phrase it to you like this. You gentlemen can either make one phone call today, or make several. These are you options." Rolft stared at the stoic crowd. The silence lasted a few seconds before one of the larger men in the group, a man Rolft recognized as Guy Arsenault, from the pre-meeting briefing stood up.
"What does that mean, two options? We came here on the-" Rolft started saying the words exactly as Arsenault was. "-pretense that we would have a fair discussion of the practicality of a Parisian embargo of Brazilian goods." Rolft let out a bit of a squeal.
"Ohh, I have a knack for guessing where and when people are going with the ideas they put on their letterheads. Forgive my rudeness, Monseiur Arsenault, I just do love doing that. But yes, this is that discussion. It is far more clear-cut than your government has been making it seem in your messages. Sometimes it's best to look at the situation for what it is, not what you wish it was. So please, allow me to explain what I mean by two options; then we can have some desert, and go our ways."
"First option," Augustus slammed his hand on top of the phone "Is for you to call your government offices back in Paris, and inform them that you are, A, receiving the amount of money you petitioned the German government for, in regards to your debts to Vinland, and B, going to be participating in the full European embargo of Brazilian goods starting immediately."
He paused and stared out at the group of men. "The second option, is the one where you firstly, dial the number one, one, oh, three, two, seven, talk to the sweet woman, er, her name is Elke, and ask for extension one. From that point, you will tell President Anton Drexler that you intend to refuse his requests for embargo, and his [10 EP], and fully intend on paying us back the loans you have taken from us last year."
"Monseiur Rolft, don't be absur-" Rolft cut him off.
"Please, relax yourself Mr. Arsenault. That is the easy part. Drexler is a calm man, and he would understand of course. You will then call the foreign offices of Catalan, Italy, Denmark, Croatia, Serbia, Rome, the Russian Empire, Normandy, Aquitaine, Bulgaria, Dauphine, Euskadi, Galicia, the Netherlands, Orleans, Poitou, India, Romania, my dear friends in Scandinavia, and a series of several other nations whom have either offered their complete support, or are currently leanings towards helping us out, and let them know that you wish to be the squeaky wheel in the progress of this collective cart, and that for all intents and purposes the embargo is off. You can also probably throw a call in to Vinland and Argentina, and let them both know that your payment is going to be off a little bit this year; oh, and call Brazil as well. Remind them of your loyalty, then ask them to not take your colonies for being unable to make payments please."
"The nerve!" Rolft said, hand to his chest. "I take offense to being referred to as ridiculous. I am merely being brutally honest." He started dialing a number on the phone
"We will deliberate amongst ourselves and get back to you and Drexler when we damn well please. You can't hold German 'generosity' over our heads to convince us to kowtow."
"Bitte ruhe, Monseiur Arsenault, I am on the phone- yes. Hello, Elka, this is Minister Rolft, can you please connect me to the Russian embassy?" There was a pause. The Parisians looked at one another; surely Rolft was bluffing. They all thought so, until he started speaking rapidly in Russian. Roflt shot a glance in Arsenault's direction, and whispered something in the phone, before laughing. The gazes of the Parisians went from Rolft to Arsenault, who remained fixed on Augustus.
"Alright, Rolft." Arsenault muttered. Rolft kept talking however, and the speed of the conversation picked up."I said alright Rolft." This time Aresenault said it louder.
Roflt stared at him for a few seconds, said something in Russian, and put the phone down. "You know, it is very, very due to interupt someone when they're on the phone with someone, especially someone as important as Gospodin Grekov." Roflt smiled at the frowning Aresnault. "But I suppose, considering the situation, a bit of rudeness can be accepted. Welcome to the fold gentlemen."
The Parisians sat silently looking at one another, Arsenault red in the face. "Please Monsieur Arsenault. Don't look so perturbed. I have buzzed my secretary; our celebratory desert is on it's way."
Rolft hardly noticed that no one else touched there pastry. It was too good for him to not help himself. His headache disappeared as well.
Colombia never raised tariffs on the Imperial German Union.
What did you mean by this, then? I must have misunderstood.
That's for you to find out if you don't retract your embargo on Brazil.
Colombia's government is not that incompetent. They are somewhat aware of what would happen were they to shut down the canal to specific powers, and even more aware of what would happen were they to announce that they'll shut down the canal to specific powers. These aren't 14-year olds going "Oh yeah?! Well I'll embargo you!"
I didn't say shut down the canal, I said raise the prices on going through it.
Yes, and I said: "Colombia never raised tariffs on the Imperial German Union."
Yes, and you also said;
I was just making sure that you were aware that I wasn't referring to the Canal being shutdown, like you seemed to inference.
Separate names with a comma.