by Max Barry

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Most Primitive: 684th Largest Cheese Export Sector: 1,205th Best Weather: 1,539th
The Red Garden of
Tyranny by Majority
We don't know.
Civil Rights
Political Freedom
World Benchmark

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Old Hope

Population9.777 billion

CapitalOld Hope City
LeaderThe Shadow


The Red Garden of Old Hope is a colossal, environmentally stunning nation, ruled by The Shadow with a fair hand, and notable for its national health service, avant-garde cinema, and public floggings. The hard-nosed, democratic, humorless, devout population of 9.777 billion Old Hopeans enjoy great social freedoms and frequent elections, where the majority of the populace regularly votes to increase its benefits at the expense of various hapless minorities.

The government — a sprawling, bureaucracy-choked, socially-minded, outspoken morass — juggles the competing demands of Spirituality, Environment, and Administration. It meets to discuss matters of state in the capital city of Old Hope City. The average income tax rate is 70.3%, and even higher for the wealthy.

The strong Old Hopean economy, worth 422 trillion Feathers a year, is driven entirely by a combination of government and state-owned industry, with private enterprise illegal. However, for those in the know, there is a large, well-organized, extremely specialized black market in Cheese Exports. The private sector mostly consists of enterprising ten-year-olds selling lemonade on the sidewalk, but the government is looking at stamping this out. Average income is 43,243 Feathers, and evenly distributed, with the richest citizens earning only 2.2 times as much as the poorest.

Noises louder than a whisper have been prohibited by law, the New Old Hopean Thesaurus lists "love" and "oppress" as synonyms, foreign despots proudly bandstand on Old Hopean airwaves, and immigrants who don't like the taste of Old Hopean Turnip Chips are immediately deported. Crime is a problem, perhaps because of the country's complete lack of prisons. Old Hope's national animal is the Phoenix, which soars majestically through the nation's famously clear skies.

Old Hope is ranked 91,793rd in the world and 3,632nd in the Rejected Realms for Most Efficient Economies, scoring 65.93 on the Krugman-Greenspan Business Outlook Index.

Most Primitive: 684thLargest Cheese Export Sector: 1,205thBest Weather: 1,539thMost Devout: 1,717thTop
Most Armed: 2,703rdMost Beautiful Environments: 3,289thMost Eco-Friendly Governments: 4,698thLargest Black Market: 4,840thLongest Average Lifespans: 6,459thMost World Assembly Endorsements: 7,154thLeast Corrupt Governments: 8,330thMost Popular Tourist Destinations: 8,529thTop
Healthiest Citizens: 9,948thMost Politically Free: 12,014thMost Influential: 14,039th
Most Primitive: 24th in the regionLargest Cheese Export Sector: 34th in the regionBest Weather: 43rd in the regionMost Devout: 50th in the regionTop
Most Armed: 80th in the regionMost Beautiful Environments: 82nd in the regionMost Eco-Friendly Governments: 121st in the regionLargest Black Market: 140th in the regionLongest Average Lifespans: 164th in the regionMost World Assembly Endorsements: 188th in the regionLeast Corrupt Governments: 196th in the regionMost Popular Tourist Destinations: 218th in the regionHealthiest Citizens: 226th in the regionMost Influential: 254th in the regionTop
Largest Populations: 669th in the regionHighest Average Tax Rates: 682nd in the regionMost Politically Free: 709th in the regionMost Advanced Public Education: 760th in the region

National Happenings

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