by Shelt Garner
I have an idea for a novel that would take the principles of The Martian and apply it to not just one person, but, say, 1 billion. If an Alien Empire could zap a big chunk of Humanity to a new, inhabitable planet on the conditions that we work together and we could only use existing 2022 technology to do, how would you do it?
The answer, after thinking about this for 15 years is — it would be very, very hard.
The chief reason is bootstrapping a new civilization on a new planet would take far, far longer than you might think. Think of all the different products we use everyday that would be extremely difficult to build without a number of years of development to get there.
Even under the best of conditions — say, the Alien Empire gave us the absolute basics of electricity and the Internet — where would people live? You might have a very surreal situation of people using laptops and cellphones while otherwise living in some pretty primitive conditions. A least for a few years, maybe a few decades.
And then, there’s one of the biggest issues — how do you organize your new global government and society? The most obvious answer is you use the USA as the basis of your new mega colony. If you were trying to settle that 1 billion people on a new planet, you could use 200 of the 335 million Americans as the core of the settlement.
But that, unto itself, would be the source of a great deal of conflict. Which, if you were trying to use all of this as the basis of a novel or a movie would be GREAT. And, of course, using the USA as the basis of a global civilization would allow you to pander, hard, to your American audience.
The whole thing is a lot of fun to think about because there are so many different ways to look at it.