By the 20th century, humanity had conquered the whole Earth. Meanwhile, technological development had altered our everyday life by introducing such inventions as the internet, medicine intertwined with information technology, and space research. With our state-of-art devices, we had broken down our physical and mental boundaries, bringing an era of unforeseen technological achievements. Communication and transfer of goods and values had become faster and faster. It was the cradle of total globalization.

The first few decades after the millennium saw the revival of the space race started during the Cold War, with new participants entering the competition. Russia joined the space program of the European Union out of strategic consideration. The English-speaking countries, formerly dominant in space research, were matched by the equally thriving Asian space program. International rivalry expanded beyond the Earth to outer space.

It was not until 2049 that significant achievements occurred in space research, when the first expedition to Mars took place. Within 30 years, several self-sustaining research settlements were built on the Red Planet. The next milestone of space colonization was the building of mining facilities on the moons of the gas giants, where rare materials are quarried. Hundreds of transportation lines linked the newly conquered areas to the Earth, and the number of space stations reached 30 by 2140.

Expansion was slow but steady in the Solar system. At the same time, the Earth’s society was undergoing radical changes. More and more people were part of the classic consumer model, but production could not keep up with this, the capacity of the Earth was reaching its limits. In the meantime, boundaries between the producer companies and the branches of power were disappearing. Corruption in the growing states gave ever-increasing authority to individuals in state-owned enterprises. Private capital flowed more and more unscrupulously into government investments, critically weakening the apparatus of the nation states around the globe.

The dysfunctional governments were faced with a new, far more pressing problem: the energy crisis. Non-renewable energy source prices sky-rocketed, while research into new technologies showed little success. A new, global war was inevitable. The war was initiated by the states of growing influence suffering from the scarcity of energy, against the countries hoarding the remaining energy sources.

The war ended quickly, with the worldwide economic crisis accounting for more destruction than bombs. Before any of the power states could have won the war, the crisis induced by quick disinvestments broke the arrogant and bloated governments. The crisis of traditional nation states consummated at the end of the war, when the governmental agencies became increasingly unable to provide the social security their people were accustomed to, and thus the sudden drop of the living standards of globalization put an end to governments as such.

During the war, the multinational giant corporations devoured every key area already lost to the governments. A mere 100 years earlier, political extremes chanting their radical programs would have filled the void in power, but this changed completely by the 22nd century. These multinational corporations monopolized every element of liberal parliamentary governing, including the three branches of power, the private sector, and the press that controls public morale.

The driving force of global economy is the consumer society, the restoration of which became the primary goal of the mega corporations. These corporate giants who ruled the economy gained universal support from the public for their grand, highly resource-demanding investments as they stabilized the standards of living. The domination of heavy industry was overtaken by the centers of technological innovation and by the developing space infrastructure.

Table of contents | The new leaders of Earth >