by Max Barry

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The United Realms of
New York Times Democracy

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The special status of a royal family is enshrined in law.


Government power is substantially delegated to local authorities.

Proportional Representation

Votes translate linearly to elected representation, with no seats or electoral college.

Term Limits

Elected representatives must leave office after a legally mandated amount of time.


No Marriage

Marriage is prohibited.

Compulsory Organ Harvesting

Citizens have no say in the medical use of their bodies after death.

No Sex

Biological reproduction is prohibited.

AI Personhood

Artificial beings are legally recognized citizens.

No Smoking

Smoking is prohibited, even in private.

Law & Order


A period of military service is compulsory for all citizens.

Gun Control

Citizens are forbidden from owning firearms.


The nation enforces a national curfew.

State Surveillance

The state heavily monitors citizen behavior and communication.

DNA Harvesting

Citizen DNA must be submitted to the state.

ID Chips

Citizens are administered an under-the-skin ID chip.



Industry is owned and run by the government in a centrally planned economy.

AI Planning

The nation runs an AI-backed planned economy.

Universal Health Care

The state provides health care to all citizens.

Nuclear Power

The nation is nuclear powered.

Space Program

The nation runs a space program.


The state mandates the use of the metric system.


Weapons of Mass Destruction

The nation claims the legal right to use WMDs.

Climate Treaty

The nation is a signatory to an international climate treaty.