Monday, January 30, 2017

How it played out

With all the public attention being paid to the start of the new presidential administration, I thought I'd mention how the presidency went in the alternate timeline used in "Another Girl, Another Planet".

The story is set in 1985, and the president is John Anderson. Remember him? He was the moderate Republican who ran for president in 1980 as an independent. He got 6.6 percent of the vote.

In the timeline used in "Another Girl, Another Planet", George Wallace's American Party campaign in 1968 leads to a permanent split between the liberal and conservative wings of the Democrat Party, with the liberals remaining Democrats and the conservatives joining the American Party.(Ronald Reagan, for example, is a member of the American Party, not the Republican Party).

As a result, the Republican Party stays centrist in the moderate middle; it doesn't need to try to draw in southern conservatives to win elections. Richard Nixon is replaced after Watergate by Sen. Mark Hatfield, and Anderson replaces Hatfield.

Also, James Earle Carter remains in the Navy and is, in fact, widely seen as the probable successor of the elderly Admiral Robert Heinlein as the head of the space program.

1 comment:

  1. The thought of Carter in charge of the space program makes me cringe.

    ReplyDelete

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"It’s possible that you haven’t run into the stories of Lou Antonelli. Since 2003, he’s been publishing delightful short tales of alternate history all over the nooks and crannies of the SF world. Thanks to Fantastic Books, we now have 28 of these little gems in one place. "Many of Antonelli’s stories have an unexpected twist ending. And many of them are what he calls “secret history” stories, which aren’t exactly alternate history—they’re set in our familiar history, but there’s always some element that contemporary observers missed. " -

- Don Sakers, The Reference Library, Analog July-Aug. 2014

A better path develops for a distraught man in “Double Exposure” by Lou Antonelli (debut 6/11 and reviewed by Frank D). Jake is about to end it all. He has been trying to keep his high maintenance wife happy for decades and has needed to embezzle to satisfy her spending habits. Now, on the verge of indictment and abandoned by his spouse, he buys a gun. Before he pulls the trigger, he spies a Kodak one-day photo hut. Curious, he pulls up to the window. They are holding pictures of him and his last girlfriend from 30 years before. The package is a lot thicker than it should be. Double Exposure” is listed as an Alternative History story but I would classify it as a Magical Realism tale. It is set as a second chance tale, a look into a life that should have been. The author is inspired by his memories of the old photo huts (I remember them) and of their disappearance. A cool idea (photos of another life), one that I could imagine would make for a great anthology.

- Frank Dutkiewicz, Diabolical Plots

“Great White Ship”: A traveler stuck waiting for a flight strikes up a conversation with an old airline employee. The Old Timer tells him a story of a Great White Airship that arrives from a most unusual destination. The story of a craft from an alternate reality and how it got there is only the precursor to the final act. This is one of my favorite stories from this site. I have a great passion for lighter-than-air craft and their potential as a future means of transport, which opens the story. The author uses this speculation to launch into an engaging tale. As fascinating as the main story line is, the alternate history premise that accompanies it is just as worthwhile. This story was well written and very well thought out. It is well worth the read. Recommended.

- James Hanzelka, Diabolical Plots

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