The Conglomerate

A corporate government is an interesting prospect at best. The government of the future is formed by an elaborate interweaving of the top-level management from various corporations with extreme, and far-reaching influence. In short, the more powerful a particular corporation is, the more influential they are in the political landscape of humanity.

Just as any corporation’s leadership is made up of multiple levels or layers of people, each holding more power or sway than those immediately below them, the Sol system’s government is made up of the CEO’s of multiple corporations, the more powerful the corporation is, the higher up the chain of command the individual is.

Policy is decided from the top down, with the highest-level individual handing orders down to the next level for execution, and expecting follow-through that can be verified through a complicated system of analysis and metrics. If an action is determined to be more hassle than it is worth, typically the individual responsible for its having been carried out is removed from whatever position of power they hold. As a result, just as in the corporate world of old, tasks and directives are typically handed down as far as possible, to be carried out by the peons at the base of the pyramid.

Every person that lives within the developed areas of the Sol system, in some way or other, work for the conglomerate. Even John Doe that runs the local grocery store, is responsible for corporate directives on some level. Everyone that is not a dissident, makes their living within the corporate infrastructure. Housing is provided by the corporation, free of charge. As is food, health care, efficient public transportation, power, data, media, all provided by the corporation.

Because of the structure of the government, it is a miserable place for anyone not of the proper mindset to live and work (At least, anyone seeking power to any degree, the people at the bottom of the pyramid are usually perfectly happy and blissfully unaware of any form of complexities in the government) in an environment that is rife with espionage and back-stabbing.

Centuries ago, the government abandoned the idea of promotion based upon tenure and the ‘open door’ policy. The only way to get ahead in the government is by moving someone else lower on the ladder. There is no necessity in moving up one step at a time however, if you can prove the incompetence of someone ten steps ahead of you, then you can try on their shoes, at least until the next eager go-getter comes along and dethrones you that is.

The corporation (that is to say, humanity) is ultimately governed by the Conglomerate, which is a group of five CEO’s of the five most powerful, most influential corporations in existence. It is widely rumored that the Conglomerate is actually ruled by a single, enigmatic individual that lives in the shadows and is never seen or heard directly by anyone, at least not anyone who knows what they may have seen at any rate.

Each of the five CEO’s has the power and resources of their own corporation behind them, and they all tend to constantly be vying for power of the others. As a result they have each developed a private armada of ships and an army of troops that do their bidding. Publicly these forces all appear as one unified fighting force, and it is true in as much as whenever there is any kind of threat that faces the conglomerate as a whole, they will work together with great efficiency to fix the problem. However, when things are calmer, there is a great deal of tension between these forces whenever they encounter one another. They will constantly work against one another by establishing regular areas of influence where they enforce the will of their own corporation, but they will also try to expand their sphere of influence by moving in on other corporation’s areas.

The end result for the citizens living within these areas can be subjected to constant changes in military presence and minutia of the law that they bring with them. People living in the center of any power’s turf are generally shielded from these effects, but those unfortunate enough to reside along the edges will usually know no peace from the effects of the struggle.

Even with all of this political strife taken into account there is one thing that will pull all of the various entities within the corporation and the Conglomerate together, and that is dissidents. Dissidents are those people who choose to live ‘off the grid.’ They refuse to work for the corporation. They refuse to live within corporate facilities or benefit from their other offerings. Any time a pocket of dissidents is located, they are routed out by corporate forces and its people are ‘reeducated’ and reintroduced to life in a ‘civilized’ society. Those that resist this process are… misplaced… and usually never seen or heard from again.

There is an underground movement among the dissidents, and some of the citizens of the corporation. The movement is meant to unseat the conglomerate and establish a republic in its place, and it is, of course, resisted with the utmost ferocity by the Conglomerate. This is why the dissidents are rooted out and annihilated whenever they are discovered.

The five corporations that make up the Conglomerate are