"It's in our country's interests to find those who would do harm to us and get them out of harm's way."
—George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., April 28, 2005
The first 20 years of the twenty first century turned out much more dramatic than anybody could have predicted, even though there was a dawning realization from about 1970 that Earth was rapidly becoming a less hospitable place then it used to be. While during the late twentieth century the suspicions by climatologists and biologists that the biosphere was changing to the worse were initially raised (sparked by Roger Revelle’s 1957 quote that humanity was conducting a "large-scale geophysical experiment" on the planet by releasing greenhouse gases), most of those academics were still seen as green hippie nutters by the mainstream scientific community. Nevertheless, over the next twenty or so years the environmental lobby gathered increasingly convincing data that proved an significant increase in global temperature with more nations experiencing bizarre weather patterns. By the first years of the twenty-first century species were going extinct left right and centre and the vast hole in the ozone layer over the Antarctic was increasing in size, making the efforts by the E.U. in curbing greenhouse gases look useless, and threatening (still rather marginal societies) Argentina and New Zealand.
Even though some of the more progressive nations within the European Union were starting to increase pressure on their newer members to reduce their use of fossil energies within their quickly growing economies, their lobbying remained largely unheard. These were societies deprived of the benefits of free trade for over 50 years, and their citizens were not in the mood to be denied their consumption spree. Three of the biggest users of carbon based fuels, China, India and the USA were oblivious to the startled calls of “Old Europe”. India and China were by then experiencing a dramatic economic boom that needed to be sustained with imported oil. Both countries experienced unprecedented increase in their oil consumption as 2 billion men and women suddenly became interested in owning a car (or maybe two or three) while the first world almost completely relocated their manufacturing processes onto Chinese, Indian and Malaysian soil, making these societies even more energy dependent.
The federal government of the U.S., while having the technological means to switch from fossil fuels, was
- politically not ready to promote energy conservation (this would have been understood as a clampdown on every American’s personal right to waste as much energy as he wants to and pretty much seen by the right as a constitutional perk. Any alteration of that right would have been seen as an attack by the federal government on the personal freedom of any American),
- not about to start listening to those socialists in Europe and
- still believing to have another 50 years of unlimited reserves sitting in the Gulf states and their newest satellite state, Iraq.
This attitude by the Americans became more pronounced when in 2016 the U.S.A elected another Texan neoconservative oil man with a strong Christian background. After eight years of alienation of the Europeans under the Bush Government and the well meaning but unsuccessful Obama government, nobody outside of the USA really took any notice anymore, as disenchantment with the American political partisan process became widespread, even within the U.S. After the second presidential election in a row that was marred by electoral irregularities due to trimming of electoral rolls and software faults, the American and European left were too disillusioned to care. With obvious and palpable fatigue of the Democratic Party, the Republican leadership decided to up the stakes and encouraged members of the right fringe of the party to put their names forward for the primaries. The most promising of the candidates, Wayne Walker, was a protestant lawyer from Corpus Christi with all the trimmings that were necessary to make it in the republican party of the early 21. century: A well developed instinct for human frailties, good looks and a scalp full of hair. A blonde wife, fundraising activities for the Christian Coalition and endorsements by Barbara Bush and most of the Fox News commentators were an obvious boon.
Made presidential material by the previous administration over almost a decade, he first became a congressman for the grand old party in 2000, was parachuted into the New Mexico gubernatorial race in 2002 and was ready to announce his campaign for the presidency in 2006. The only challenger from the Democrats that was credible and popular enough to give him a run for his money met a similar fate to that other democratic icon, John F. Kennedy. In March 2014, shortly before the first primaries, Hilary Rodham Clinton and her husband were assassinated during a fundraiser for the Sierra Club in Washington D.C. in which they were supposed to announce their membership of the Club, positioning themselves (daringly and not uncontroversial) at the opposite end of environmental politics. The assassination, the stuff of countless webflics by geeks on the net, sporting the most outrageous conspiracy theories, became almost instantly part of American oral history, putting it on one level with the first moon landing, the Kennedy deaths and the first Gulf war. Decades later people would still be able to recall what they were doing at that particular moment when they first heard the news of the killings.
The assassin, a 22 year old student at the ultra-conservative, ethnically segregated Bob Jones University gave himself up after firing his two deadly shots (years of practice with his dad on the neighborhood shooting range helped develop his skills), always insisted on himself being a patriotic American, responsible for his own actions with no outside help who did what he have to do to defend the values of the U.S. he believed in. His trial nevertheless never established how he was able to smuggle a conventional semi-automatic gun into the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, that for the fundraiser was brimming with security, metal detectors and the Secret Service.
After the Assassination the Democrats imploded and fractured into three surviving parties: The “Social democratic party of America”, dominated by unionized labour, the “Green Alternative”, a sort of joint venture between the ecological minded democrats, the Sierra Club and the Green Party of America, and the keeper of the original Name who now harboured the libertarian wing of the Democrats. It goes without saying that this time the elections were a Republican whitewash with large majorities in both House and Senate. The Republican Leadership was so convinced of their victory that this time there was absolutely no sign of electoral fraud and Walker became the next Texan president. Now with a comfortable majority in both senate and the house and a convincing mandate by his electorate, Walker began to shape American politics his way: