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brickhistory
12th Oct 2008, 20:34
I'm sure I haven't thought this all the way through (in which case it fits nicely here on pprune), but what if, say from 1900 on, there had been no USA?

Given the other claimants for inventing flight (see? Keeping it aviation related! :ok:), then that technology is available and any/all other US-based inventions occurred, what, geo-politically, would the world be like today?

Assume that the landmass of the US was never there and so Canada and Mexico had the same physical boundaries as they do now.

Since 1900 is a good enough figure for when the US really started to be a major actor on the world stage, how would events such as WWI, the Great Depression, WWII, the Cold War, etc, etc, have progressed.

This should be entertaining from both the Rev Wright-like "The US is the cause of all evil in the world, ever" brigade, to those who think otherwise.

So, please, if you would, have at it.

tony draper
12th Oct 2008, 20:37
Bollix to that! there would be no Fender Stratocasters.:uhoh:

brickhistory
12th Oct 2008, 20:38
True, Mr. Draper, but for the sake of the topic politically, say a Canadian had come up with it.

tony draper
12th Oct 2008, 20:41
A Canadian? the Stratocaster !! be serious.:rolleyes:
If you wany me to be serious,the world would be a much poorer place to live.:ok:

SINGAPURCANAC
12th Oct 2008, 20:43
A few years ago there were very popular sentence,

COLUMBO, I AM GOING TO F:mad: YOUR CURIOSITY!
:E

Strelnikov
12th Oct 2008, 20:43
Good Lord - now that is a fascinating thought. One suspects that there are three possibilities.

1) The land occupied by USA was never successfully colonised by the Brits and French (sorry about that) and evolved on the back of the indiginents - well - who knows. I've no idea how that may have panned out.

2) The Russians colonised from the (US) West. Now that could have been ugly.

3) US was colonised by the British and remained part of the Empire.

All three are completely unlikely. History played out its natural course to the inevitable.

Pontius Navigator
12th Oct 2008, 20:49
Brick, this is Cliometrics, the systematic application of economic theory, econometric techniques, and other formal/mathematical methods to the study of history (especially, social and economic history). The term is also sometimes used referring to counterfactual history.

Can you pick 1900 as a start date? You might go earlier and ask what if the Springfield Armoury had not been built - ie mass production of weapons.

GrumpyOldFart
12th Oct 2008, 20:51
Assume that the landmass of the US was never there



It's obvious - we'd have let Québec separate... well, to be more accurate, we'd have separated from them, and paddled our way south to warmer climes.

Simple, innit?

brickhistory
12th Oct 2008, 21:00
All of the above technical details are, of course, true. (Cliometrics? I had no idea. I would have assumed that was the study of certain parts of one gender's anatomy ((which is certainly worthy of study, but I digress...)). Mass production certainly did occur elsewhere. 1900 again was an arbitary date, somewhat, based on the US' first real stirrings of its economic and, subsequently, military power in the world.

Prior to that, it was mostly just a place to start over after leaving the 'old country' for whatever the reason (It'd be churlish to note that lots of folks still want to get here over anywhere else on this shared rock).


I was looking, for example, for some theories of what some would envision the geo-political climate today if there were no big, bad US to blame for everything.

For example, post-WWII (not discounting as to how/when that conflict might have turned out if there had been 'no arsenal of democracy' and some 90-ish divisions, aircraft carriers, etc, etc), but regarding Israel.

Would it still exist today, assuming that the founding of Israel proceeded as it did?

Would the Soviet Union have crumpled? If not, why not? If so, why?

And so on.

Pontius Navigator
12th Oct 2008, 21:02
Africans are saying that the loss of 12 million Africans to the slave trade adversly affected their development. You could argue that the transportation of 'criminals' and the poor to the American colonies also had an affect on American development.

With Independence deportation switched to Australia.

America was a major market for British steel in the 19th Century.

Really you would need to consider the world without America at all. No trade, no emigration, etc.

Post 1900 there was also mass immigration from Europe. What would have happened if emigration had not been possible?

Without Amercian expansionist ambitions would the Japanese have felt the need for imperialistic expansion in Asia?

Without American 'aid' in WW1 Britain might have fought longer but not had to pay vast sums to the US. She would have been economically stronger.

Germany would have been defeated in the field. Versaille would have been different with only UK and France to police it thus the political unfairness would have been different.

America would not have invaded Russia. Without the USA, support for the White Russians would have been less. The Communists would not have had cause to be as paranoid of capitalist invasion.

Post WW2, if WW2 had happened, there would have been no standoff between east and west.

The British aircraft industry would lead the world in passenger flight.

tony draper
12th Oct 2008, 21:07
No physical barrier betwixt the Pacific and Atlantic?,hell! Europe as we know it would probably never have existed.
:uhoh:

Strelnikov
12th Oct 2008, 21:19
Doh! Forgive my naivety.

Ignore my earlier post - irrelevant.

I've realised this is a "fishing for compliment" post. Is collective US self confidence that bad eh?

Hmmm....

BTW - You can have TD - he speaks for himself and not for Britain (though given his "tongue up the US a**" tendencies I'm sure you'd like to think he's representative).

He is not.

Incidentally - I love the States. Can't be doing with toady gobshites though.

galaxy flyer
12th Oct 2008, 21:19
Bismarck said, the most consequential fact of modern history was that North America spoke English. Sorry, Quebecois, you are included.

No America? Germany might have prevailed in WWI leading to no Hitler! Likely, no communism in Russia, but a revolution, nonetheless.

GF

G-AWZK
12th Oct 2008, 21:23
The southern half of what is now California would have been colonised by the Mexicans.

The French would have had an enclave based around Louisiana, part of Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.

The British and the Germans would have fought for control of certain areas of the North East Corridor - but the superior British Naval power would have finally won the day. In other words, proxy wars fought far from home would have kept the Kaiser happy and WW1 wouldn't have happened in Europe. It is possible that the carnage of Flanders would have had to have found itself another place to happen. There would have been no Treaty of Versailles overly punishing the Germans, there would have been no Corporal Hitler who was gassed in the trenches and there would have been no reason for his rabble rousing. He would have died a poor man unable to get into art college.

The British would have then had a World hegemony unrivaled, until the French decided to make a play for parts of the Caribbean that the British liked and major sea war occurred in the 1920's.

The British and the French had been working on various ways of getting airborne since the 1880's but the British had the edge when a Kiwi chap, called Richard Pearse, was brought to Britain to talk to a Scotsman Preston Watson. In 1904 the Pearse-Watson Aerialcraft was demonstrated at Errol Airfield close to Dundee. Their design was superior to other contemporary designs and the British military first used the Aerialcraft in a small war in Africa. It's potential was quickly seen and was first used to great effect in the major sea battles that Britain and France had keeping Japanese aggression in check in the Pacific and Indochina.

By the 1930's as there had been no Wall Street Crash, Britain and Germany had signed treaties with France to pool their resources to ensure that Russia was kept firmily in check and the rising tide of Bolshevism was crushed by joint operations between the newly combined European Army.

Ascend Charlie
12th Oct 2008, 21:32
Panama Canal not needed
Cubans and Mexicans look south for somewhere to go to escape
Tornados have nowhere to develop, so insurance premiums worldwide are lower
Cinema never developed past the "Carry On" phase, and we are never inflicted with "Days of our Lives" and "The Young and the Breastless"
Ray Krok (or whatever) never starts McDonalds, so the world is slimmer
We have REAL motorcycles instead of that Harley rubbish, and cleaner bikie gangs who have pommy accents

brickhistory
12th Oct 2008, 21:34
Doh! Forgive my naivety.

Ignore my earlier post - irrelevant.

I've realised this is a "fishing for compliment" post. Is collective US self confidence that bad eh?

strel, I understand how you can take my topic opener as the above, but it wasn't meant to be.

Rather how would the current world situation be different?

Would the Allies have won WWI as PN states? I don't think so as there just weren't anymore British or French troops to keep feeding the trenches, but for the sake of discussion, I'll play along.

How would the Allies sans US have finished WWI? Assuming an Allied victory, would Versailles be the inevitable result with that leading then to Hitler and his ilk?

Who would be the leading nation to confront Iran? Would anyone do so?

Would there be an Israel if not for a US? If not, would all be sweetness and harmony in the Middle East and the Muslim world?

I don't think these are outlandish questions. So given my premise, what would be some of the differences in modern human history?

BombayDuck
12th Oct 2008, 21:42
Slightly off topic, but brick, pick up Stuart Slade's "The Big One" in which his story breaks away from the real world in 1940 and takes a new direction... He has since written many sequels - some are online, some are now only in book form. His reasoning is precise, his knowledge of conventional and nuclear weapons and delivery vehicles is supreme.

He used to publish each chapter online as he wrote them, and people would ask questions on why he chose something or not another consequence. It was as fascinating reading the Q&A as the chapters themselves. Sadly, he had to pull them off once the book was released...

Howard Hughes
12th Oct 2008, 21:47
Would the Allies have won WWI as PN states? I don't think so as there just weren't anymore British or French troops to keep feeding the trenches, but for the sake of discussion, I'll play along.

How would the Allies sans US have finished WWI? Assuming an Allied victory, would Versailles be the inevitable result with that leading then to Hitler and his ilk?

Who would be the leading nation to confront Iran? Would anyone do so?

Would there be an Israel if not for a US? If not, would all be sweetness and harmony in the Middle East and the Muslim world?

I don't think these are outlandish questions. So given my premise, what would be some of the differences in modern human history?
-I think the allies still would have eventually won WWI however I feel it would have gone on much longer!
-At th end of WWI, both sides would have been so diminished, Hitler probably wouldn't have had his powerbase and Russian expansion would have then been un-hindered.
-If there was no US, some might argue that there would be no need to confront Iran!
-There would be no Israel, but the Sunni's and Shi'ite's would still be at war with one another...:rolleyes:

Scumbag O'Riley
12th Oct 2008, 21:52
Some people would be better off. Some people would be worse off. One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter.

Probably a question to be answered by our great great great grandchildren, the USA now appears to be past its peak but it's influence on world affairs will continue for some time to come.

brickhistory
12th Oct 2008, 22:02
Mr. Duck, thanks for the book tip, sounds interesting.

----------------------------------------------------------

Mr. Hughes, why do you think the Allies would have won WWI? Was there a change in strategy or technology that makes you think that?

For me, with no fear of being overwhelmed by the Allies and no end in sight, I think the Germans would have won an armistace with them holding their lines as of about July 1918. This would have occurred by the late summer of 1919 due to the blockade and the need to gather as much of the coming harvest as possible to avoid wholesale starvation.

Economically exhausted, both sides would have been powerless to do anything regarding the Bolsheviks.

Hitler or the like still would have risen to power due to a destitute Germany, but due to being broke from maintaining its defenses in the West and trying to watch the East. The result would still have been Weimar-like state with a monarch as the figurehead, like Great Britain.

419
12th Oct 2008, 22:21
If there was no USA, there would be no $US, which must be the most widely accepted currency in the world.
Even many countries which consider the US as the land of Satan will quite happily accept Dollars.

I can't see the € or Yen ever being as popular.

Also without the nuclear race that went on between the USA and USSR, the current technology (both weapons and nuclear power), might still be decades behind where it is now.

Howard Hughes
12th Oct 2008, 22:28
Mr. Hughes, why do you think the Allies would have won WWI? Was there a change in strategy or technology that makes you think that?
I am not really a twentieth centiury history buff, but I didn't see a change in strategy, just a dogedness not to give up!
I can't see the € or Yen ever being as popular.

Of course no US and we probably would have been paying in Roubles! (sp?);)

Buster Hyman
12th Oct 2008, 22:43
Without the "Good ol'...", Australia would be the dominant player on the world stage!:ok:

(Seriously....You guys have held us back!)


;):p

Howard Hughes
12th Oct 2008, 22:50
I've just had a thought, no US and there would be no 'World Series'...:eek:

Rainboe
12th Oct 2008, 23:03
Would WW1 have been a stalemate? If so, no rise of National Socialism in Germany, maybe the EEC would have come far earlier and Europe developed into a superpower. However, it may have attacked Russia- too much theological clash to remain peaceful neighbours. Bearing in mind no invader of Russia has ever succeeded, it may have this time, or Russia and allies may have walked all over Europe. Judging by their record, it would not have been pretty. But I think a united Europe in the 20s and 30s would have been the supreme superpower (based on population, education, wealth and military size), as long as Germany didn't wake up one morning and think 'it's been a while since we invaded France!'. So, I reckon the US has had a deleterious effect on Europe last Century.

eticket
12th Oct 2008, 23:03
Would the fate of an extended WWI have ultimately been down to which side survived the Spanish (Bird) Flu epidemic of 1918-1919 the best?

(More died from this than from the war itself.)

Crosshair
12th Oct 2008, 23:08
The United States, for all of its practical aspects (money, guns, etc) is first of all an idea:

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

That's it, isn't it? Never mind how often the idea has been twisted, exploited, misused, and invoked in vain. The world is a better place because a group of people defined themselves that way, and largely continue to do so.

Strelnikov
12th Oct 2008, 23:08
What if there had never been a USA?

Dunno - but before I die I expect to see a world in which USA is no longer its mighty dominating self. The nature of US politics mean that you sure as hell won't be planning for the change in oil dominated world politics.

At least Indians and Chinese know something of the world outside their borders. Ignorant folk they are not.

Bring it on.

West Coast
12th Oct 2008, 23:34
But I think a united Europe in the 20s and 30s would have been the supreme superpower

That pre-supposes that a united Europe could be achieved. A Europe beyond scope of the current EU would be required and that's proved to be somewhat elusive. The differences in Europe that existed in the early 1900's are not unique to that time frame and existed before then to one degree or another now as well. Speaks to the lack of collective resolve to speak in a single voice that something as simple as a common currency among ALL (pride only is stopping it)of the EU cant be achieved nor can issues of a higher order (a constitution, common goals in foreign and domestic policies, etc) from being achieved. If the framework to be a superpower can't be achieved now, I'd say it wasn't achievable then either.

Enjoying the fruits of an economic zone on steroids is a far cry from achieving superpower status. Before you lecture me, remember what the EEC originally stood for. Over here we call it mission creep, and it can be deadly.

EchoMike
13th Oct 2008, 00:10
Note that I do understand paragraphs - for some reason everything I send to Pprune comes out as one block, rant style . . . No USA - first, I'd never have been born. All four of my grandparents came to the USA to escape incessant and ongoing pogroms in Russia and the Ukraine. China would be under the merciless heel of the Japanese East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere, so China would be a Japanese colony. In addition, there would be no US consumers to buy things from Chinese factories (which the Japanese would have destroyed anyway). See "Rape of Nankang". India would also have suffered - the Japanese had designs on them, too. There would be no EU and no Euro. The idea for the EU and common market originated at the end of WW2, when the nations of Europe finally said they had had enough, we need to do something else besides constantly fight each other. If they had not been totally destroyed (no WW2), and things continued with a series of inconclusive wars, chances are they'd still be fighting. Alsace Lorraine would be French/German/French/German ad nauseum. The land mass of the US would be another battleground - various nations (Europe, Russia, Mexico) would all be competing for the resources. They would bleed themselves dry. The locals (American Indians) would get the shaft anyway, except from people with British, French, Russian or Spanish accents. The Barbary pirates would still be in business. Europe paid tribute for centuries and never had the b*lls to just go in and clean them up. There is no reason to assume they would change just because there was no USA. I could go on . . . and I ask you to remember that a good way to lose your shirt is to bet against the USA. We've learned our lesson about oil - in five or ten years everyone here is going to be driving electric cars (electricity from nuclear reactors), and OPEC won't be able to GIVE the stuff away. If you think about this carefully, you'll discover that the existence of the USA has been a great boon to the rest of the world. Stop parroting the "Blame America First" line and think about it a little. And remember this - people risk their lives every day to come here, they cross deserts from Mexico, ride inner tubes from Cuba, get shipped in containers from China, whatever it takes - if the USA was such an awful place, everyone would be going the other way - and they aren't. Best Regards, Echo Mike

con-pilot
13th Oct 2008, 01:01
Well Mike, I think that pretty well handles the 'fly by'. :p

Good post. :ok:

Okay, I'm going out on a limb here. It could be my advanced age, or the fact that I lost my mind a long time ago. (don't all of you agree too damn fast. :uhoh:)

I seem to recall a book, released many years ago, that had such a hypothesis. That what is known as today, the United States of America, never formed. Canada is the same as it is know today, with the same division, what is known as New England remained under control of England, the Southeast remained under control of the French. The entire central part and the southwest, including California of the US was under Spanish rule and from Alaska to the California border was under control of Russia.

Is it just me, or does anyone else remember such a book?

larssnowpharter
13th Oct 2008, 01:11
Assume that the landmass of the US was never there and so Canada and Mexico had the same physical boundaries as they do now

Now if you are going to do a counterfactual history you should not start with a counterfactual geograhical hypothesis.

A more intersting - and, indeed, more likely - point of departure would be to travel back in time to when the colonies in N America were demanding,

'No taxation without representation'.

What would have happened if the johnnies back in blighty had said to themselves,

'Hmmm. That sounds reasonable'.

brickhistory
13th Oct 2008, 01:20
lars,

Now if you are going to do a counterfactual history you should not start with a counterfactual geograhical hypothesis.

I was trying to avoid the 'fight over the continental US landmass' and steer the conversation towards who would step up to the plate around the world, if anyone.

For example, Britain and France carved up Iran and Iraq and drew arbitrary lines on a map.

Would they/some sort of EU-like creature (but one that works) have stood up to Hitler's Germany, the Soviet Union, et al? Realistically, could they?

Would this EU thing actually confront anyone? Would there be a need?

Would the Soviet Union have imploded on its own or only confronting a united Europe which, as noted above, is still waiting to be a reality?

-------------------------------------------------------------------

crosshair, thank you for the reminder. Adult beverage of your choice owed should our paths cross. :ok:

EchoMike
13th Oct 2008, 01:26
What would have happened if the johnnies back in blighty had said to themselves, 'Hmmm. That sounds reasonable'. Never happen. Exhibit A: the CAA. Happy to tax aviation out the wazoo, and what do you get for it? More of same . . .

larssnowpharter
13th Oct 2008, 01:44
I was trying to avoid the 'fight over the continental US landmass' and steer the conversation towards who would step up to the plate around the world, if anyone

I take your point.

Without the USA, prior to 1900 the economic and political map would have been very, very different.

The 'huddled masses' in their millions left Ireland during the potato familes, left Germany after the failed 1848 revolution, left Russia after the progroms followng the assisination of the Tsar. The Jewish migration was of particular note, especially from Germany and Central Europe.

If the landmass making up the USA did not exist, the English and Scottish bankers who financed the expansion westwards (rail, cattle) would have had to look elsewhere for profit. What price an expansion in S America and Canada?

No, my belief is that if there had not been a haven such as was the USA (a safety valve if you wish), an overpopulated Europe would have been subject to a revolution of truly continental proportions. As it was we just had lots of 'little' ones.

You then set into fifth, sixth order speculation as to what might have happened. Too many variables.

Pontius Navigator
13th Oct 2008, 07:09
I think there was a change of strategy at the end of 1917. Effectively the USA joined the winning side. I believe that had been in the balance given a large Germanic population. The Commonwealth forces were introducting mobility and fluidity into the front.

I recall an Oz film with Paul Hogan of all people. There was not trench warfare at that point as breakthroughs were starting to occur. Remember the German people blamed their own politicians for losing the war, not the US.

Iran would not have existed so no problem. Turkey woul dhave continued to hold Mesopotamia and the Anglo-Persian Oil Company would have ensured stability in the Gulf.

Having nothing of value the Afghan situation would not have developed although there would have been Russian pressure for a warm water presence in the Gulf.

Pax Britannica would have persisted longer but pressures would have mounted in India and they would have gained Commonwealth status rather than outright independence. Pakistan and Bangladesh would not have been formed and the religious wars would have been contained.

Dutch development in the Indonesian archipelago was unsympathetic and Chinese expansion in Malaya against the British and against the French in Indo-China would have increased. The Japanese would have helped the European powers maintain a balance of power in the region but sought quid pro quo in the Russian Far East.

The Japanese would eventually have swept into South East Asia and as far as India. Whether they would have met the same fate as Napoleon and Hitler with over extended supply lines and ambitions is possibly likely but large parts of India would have been occupied. Only in the mountain regions would they have met fierce resistance from Gurka, Siki and Afghans with Chinese troops pressing down from the north.

British and German nuclear weapons would have ensured stalemate in Europe but British first use in Asia would have alarmed the Japanese although there would have been no threat against the Japanes mainland.

Ace Rimmer
13th Oct 2008, 07:23
Con: You are not alone I seem to remember it - didn't it start based on the assumption of a British win at Yorktown?

On a personal note - no US, no US army in Germany no old man rimmer meeting English bird (old mother rimmer) ergo no me...

Actually no US no OMR either because there'd be no Grandma Rimmer cos Great Grandpa (jockistani) wouldn't have met Great Grandma (Cherokee) (mind you if I didn't exsist I wouldn't have to admit to having Okie relatives!!)

that's enough of that...

Beatriz Fontana
13th Oct 2008, 07:51
No USA, no Fox News.

The world would be a better place.

chornedsnorkack
13th Oct 2008, 08:03
What about Independent States of America?

Seriously. There was United Provinces of Central America - there is not one now. There was Gran Colombia, for nine years or so.

So, what if the Confederation collapsed in 1787 - the 13 colonies just could not agree on common government, and became completely independent states from each other, like Central American countries are, or Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela?

Rainboe
13th Oct 2008, 08:24
Well the discussion was simply what if there was no USA in existence which is pretty harmless. There was a takeover by the anti-USA rant brigade, but they should be ignored. It's as harmless as discussing the non-existence of the UK and the British Empire. What would have filled the vacuum? I suspect the French Empire would have been as big with most of the world speaking French and everybody having to learn the 'sex' of every single object in the world- railway lines, flower pots, kettles. We'd all be discussing best pates from which over-fed forcefed geese over Kronenbourg. Pprune would be in French with more complicated keyboards for those e-things. Be relieved!

BlueWolf
13th Oct 2008, 08:59
Maybe a better question would have been "What if the United States had never intervened in the affairs of the world beyond its own borders"; effectively the answer would be the same, but within a more realistic scenario.

That answer would be that the aforementioned world would suck, the Japs and the Krauts and the commies and the fascists and the religious perverts and all the other a**holes would be in charge, and the liberal pinkos of the West would have to find someone else to whinge about, only they wouldn't be allowed to, because they'd be living under some form of military dictatorship, and there wouldn't be an Internet.

At least Indians and Chinese know something of the world outside their borders. Ignorant folk they are not.

With respect, what a complete pile of unutterable bollocks. The vast majority of the populations of the nations you mention are, in fact, excruiciatingly ignorant folk. They lack education, adequate sanitation, first-world technology, effective democracy, and any real information about that outside world. The educated wealthy middle classes of the two nations are aware of, and knowledgeable about, the world outside largely because of their desire to be just like it, via precisely the same means as those which made that outside world (ie the US and the rest of the capitalist West) successful in the first place. Do anything differently they would not.

America isn't perfect, just like humanity isn't perfect, but if you'd really prefer the world without it, you may very well need your head read.

I guess this question is a bit like the whingers who dislike Microsoft so much; if you feel that strongly, feel free to come up with a better system than Bill Gates did, and market it more effectively, and supplant him.

If you don't like America so much, and you hate the world which has been created under United States hegemony, feel free to come up with a better system, market it better, convince everyone, keep the peace, and supplant the US.

If you can do better, then go for it.

Otherwise perhaps just sit down and shut up in the cheap seats, and thank your lucky stars that it does exist.

Lon More
13th Oct 2008, 09:34
The 1972 novel by Harry Harrison, "A Transatlantic Tunnel Hurrah" developed an interesting scenario.

The US remained as a British colony.

WW1 and WW2 never occurred as most of the world was under "Pax Britannica"

Technology stagnated: steam remained King - the few aircraft that existed were giant steam driven flying boats complete with a Captain and coxswain on the bridge. The Babbage Accounting Engine was the pinnacle of scientific development.

tony draper
13th Oct 2008, 09:41
No WW2 no penicillin,half the people on prune would have probably died in childhood and the population of the UK would only be about twenty million hmmmm, that may not have been a bad thing.
:)

419
13th Oct 2008, 09:54
No Simpsons :(

tony draper
13th Oct 2008, 10:36
Gorn orf the Simpsons,one is a Family Guy man now.:ok:

airship
13th Oct 2008, 13:07
I see brick has been attacking the Scotch (or whatever his own vice is) again... ;)

The thread title is: "What if there had never been a USA?" Yet you began like some Daily Show segment: I'm sure I haven't thought this all the way through (in which case it fits nicely here on pprune), but what if, say from 1900 on, there had been no USA? Was that your 'subconcious self' admitting that it watches Jon Stewart? :ok: Whatever, in order to respond with any accuracy, please fill me in on the events leading up to the sudden disappearance of the USA towards the end of the 19th century. Surely, the preceding events would have an impact on the afterwards. Was it a Ř0.5km meteorite impact perchance? :confused:

Alternatively: I was looking, for example, for some theories of what some would envision the geo-political climate today if there were no big, bad US to blame for everything. So were you simply fishing to see whether, or just how many here would spontaneously break out with a "God bless America, Land that I love..."? Confirming your deepest and heartfelt beliefs that those "who are not with you are against you"? That the rest of the world would still be using gas-lights and we'd all be German-speakers by now?

Why should we assume that there would have been: a WWI; the great depression of 1929; a WWII; genocides of any peoples whether Jews, Asstrians, Armenians, Gypsies, Rwandans or Sudanese? Perhaps there would be no Israel today because the Jewish were quite happy to remain where they were? Or perhaps some might have wanted 'to go home' and have been warmly-greeted by their Palestinian neighbours, if only to be welcomed initially for their prowess, knowledge and capital - there would still be no pig farms over there right...?! I'll tell you something for nothing though: if all the Indians and all the Chinese had somehow converted to Catholicism, the world's population would probably be at least double or triple what it is today. There would be an awfully huge number of sexually-abused kids out there... And there would probably not be any remaining tigers, leopards and many other creatures left 'out in the wild' today, as opposed to just being endangered or bordering on extinction.

But there's something I believe that we can still count on (whether or not there was a USA after 1900), or whether the earth gets hit by a Ř5km meteorite over the next few million years, Desulforudis audaxviator (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_depth/7663927.stm): A bug which lives entirely on its own and survives without oxygen in complete darkness underground has been discovered in South Africa...
...The rod-shaped bacterium was found 2.8km (1.74 miles) beneath the surface of the Earth in the Mponeng mine near Johannesburg, living in complete isolation, total darkness and 60C (140F) heat. In ca. 2070, scientists from California's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory exploring further into the Mponeng mine discover an alien spacecraft deeply-embedded in what appears to be an early mine-shaft, and contains a perfect sphere (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sphere_(film)). They eventually discover that the US (-built and developed :ok: ) spacecraft dates from 2009AD, when lots of desperate Republicans envisaged global catastrophy in the wake of the impending Democrat victory and a few decided to embark on a NASA space mission developed on a secret NASA site on Guantanamo Bay. Unlike the movie "Sphere", this USA mission did not simply go back in time 50 years from the future, but several hundred million years, even well before the age of the dinosaurs. Using extremely powerful and state of the art (made in USA :ok: ) ca. 2068 nano-electron microscopes, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's scientists were able to distinguish that some of the earliest bugs 'were holding up' what appear to be USA flags containing 51 stars. Later DNA tests identify the bugs as being descended from an entity known as brick from the early 21st century...

shedhead
13th Oct 2008, 13:20
I think you need to go back much further than 1900 to estimate the effect that a lack of a USA would have. Consider the economic consequences in Europe if the Humble spud never reached these shores, or tobacco, Mr Draper also makes a good point about the Fender Stratocaster, with no slave trade to North America then there would have been no Blues or jazz, no rock and roll and no huge music industry. the tendency to concentrate on the martial effects is understandable but the humble spud has had a more profound influence on Europe than we like to imagine.

Solid Rust Twotter
13th Oct 2008, 13:42
...The locals (American Indians) would get the shaft anyway, except from people with British, French, Russian or Spanish accents....


That's kind of how it happened in any case.

airship
13th Oct 2008, 13:49
Consider the economic consequences in Europe if the Humble spud never reached these shores According to the UK's Potato Council (http://www.britishpotatoes.co.uk/history-of-potatoes/): Potatoes arrive in Europe

However, the invading Spanish conquistadors centuries later also loved the Peruvians' potatoes. The Spaniards had been on the look out for gold and jewels - potatoes became one of the exotic finds they excitedly brought back to Europe to impress royalty in 1536. shedhead, 1776-1536 = you're only about 240 years out...

Eat more carrots, or brocolli?! :rolleyes: ;)

BenThere
13th Oct 2008, 14:00
the humble spud

No tomatoes in Italy, either.

shedhead
13th Oct 2008, 14:11
aah but there again I did not give a date but I do see how my reference to the USA would lead you to that conclusion.apologies on my part for that!
must be more specific in future.

airship
13th Oct 2008, 14:13
No tomatoes in Italy, either. Shouldn't that more accurately read "No natural Heinz Tomato Ketchup in Italy" or anywhere else that's forgotten what real tomatoes taste like...?! ;)

Flypuppy
13th Oct 2008, 14:40
What if there had never been a USA?

Rather how would the current world situation be different?

Would the Allies have won WWI as PN states? I don't think so as there just weren't anymore British or French troops to keep feeding the trenches, but for the sake of discussion, I'll play along.

How would the Allies sans US have finished WWI? Assuming an Allied victory, would Versailles be the inevitable result with that leading then to Hitler and his ilk?

Who would be the leading nation to confront Iran? Would anyone do so?

Would there be an Israel if not for a US? If not, would all be sweetness and harmony in the Middle East and the Muslim world?
Your original question and then the subsequent questions represent two very different things. Effectively what you really want to know is how much should the world be grateful to the USA?

If you are taking 1900 to be the start point are you inferring that the American Civil War ended with the Confederate States managing to get independence? Or do you mean that the US kept itself to itself or do you mean that European Powers sliced up the US for themselves?

If you mean that the US failed in the War of Independence then France would probably still have a monarchy having not bankrupted itself supporting the insurgency.

Anyway, here is a little fantasy I have cobbled together; yes it was a quiet day in the office today.

1897 saw the Royal Navy parade it's home fleet in front of Queen Victoria, the line of ships was 30 miles long and 5 abreast. It represented the most powerful and modern ships afloat in the world at the time. This did not include the ships of Royal Navy that were still stationed around the world defending the British trading routes and interests. At this point the US Navy was an irrelevance. Not much more than a coastguard with outdated equipment.

In 1900, the British had at least as many battleships as France and Russia combined; she had more battleships than Germany, Italy, Japan and the US combined. It wouldn’t be until after the Battle of Jutland that the power of surface ships would be challenged; first by submarines, then much later by air power. 23% of the world's population was governed by Britain. Britain held 40% of the worlds overseas investments. Together with the Gold Standard, the British Pound was the world's financial benchmark, it wasn't until the Bretton Woods agreement that the pound lost it's worldwide recognition to the US Dollar.

Lets say, just for a laugh, that the US did not become involved in WW1, the basic balance of power in the European battlefronts was more or less balanced. The 1918 German breakthrough was almost perfectly balanced by the British Summer Offensive. By this time all three major European powers were war weary and their societies were tired of fighting. Crop failures in the UK and France were starting to cause food shortages, and the Anglo-French naval blockade of Germany was causing similar shortages there. The American intervention towards the end of 1917 caused the Germans to blink first, but let's say that the war simply ground to a halt. It is possible that the French would not have felt so emboldened to push for such harsh reparations and the de-militarisation of the Sudetenland, both of which were seen as humiliating to German pride. (this was one of the things that Hitler used to unite the German population)

The incredible inhumanity of trench warfare may well have been enough for the three major powers to work out their differences. The Kaiser was already being blamed for leading his country into a pointless war by 1915, so his position would have become similar to that of the British Crown - relegated to a symbolic role. In order to get their economies back into working order all three countries would have had to work together, pooling their resources. The fear of the Bolshevik revolutionaries would have been enough of a rallying cry to bring them together. Without US backing the European powers would have combined forces, as their shattered armies did not have enough men and material, to fight the Russian enemy. Would the Nazi party have risen? Difficult to say, but certainly they had a number of sympathisers in France and Britain within the aristocracy. It is possible that form of Nazism may have formed within the upper level of European society, but it would almost certainly not have been spearheaded by such ignorant knuckleheads as Hitler, Goebbels or Goering. Would the anti-Semitic part of Nazism been allowed to surface? Probably not, certainly not to the extent and vulgarity of the Final Solution.

What then? By this time a regional war between the European Allies and Russia had concluded with Russia losing some of its territory to the West of Urals. The European Navy was the single most powerful fleet afloat. Europeans had figured out aviation as all three countries had already been experimenting with powered flight. Can you imagine what a combined British, French and German aviation industry could have produced? The British and French came up with Concorde...

Would Europe have left an isolationist USA alone? Given that the 1921 Washington Naval Conference was held suggests not. The next major war would have been between the Euro-bloc and the US. Heavy battle cruisers, submarines and aircraft carriers would have fought in the North Atlantic with America invading Canada to protect it's Northern border a bitter ground war would have ensued on the North American continent. Seeing an opportunity the Japanese would have made a land grab in the Far East, while the Russians would have taken Alaska back.

Without the threats to Jews from Nazism, Ernest Rutherford, Leó Szilárd, Albert Einstein, Irčne and Frédéric Joliot-Curie, Enrico Fermi, Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann began working on the European nuclear weapon. By the mid-1930's the first theories were starting to take form at Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge and the University of Göttingen in Germany. By late 1939 the first nuclear weapon was tested at Woomera. This was to send a signal to the Japanese that they really should not meddle with the British and French colonies or the Anglo-Dutch business interests in Indo-China.

In the Middle East, the Ottoman Empire would have continued its disintegration; The Europeans would have dominated the oil rich areas of Mesopotamia, Persia and Arabia. Any uprisings would have been brutally put down. Israel would not have been created in the way it was, as there was no Holocaust. Palestine would have slowly filled up with Jewish settlers, causing minor disturbances between indigents and new comers. Between them, the European powers would have divied up parts of Trans-Jordan to various groups and made Jerusalem an International/multi-faith country within a country. The Mediterranean region would have been totally under the European Powers control.

The Caribbean was the major flash point in the 1940's with the re-equipped US Navy fighting for control of the Gulf of Mexico. The Mexican's allied with Spain and Europe were fighting a losing battle and finally cede control of both the Mexican area and the Caribbean by 1943. European interest in South America is waning and a bloody war between the Portuguese and the Americans results in the loss of the final European colony, Brazil, to the US.

Communism, it should be remembered, has not had a chance to blossom in Africa and the main battlefront between the US and Europe moves to that continent, with the British, French and Germans fiercely defending their territories there, leading to a demonstration, by the European Powers, of an Air Burst nuclear detonation over the Western Atlantic close to the US eastern seaboard. No deaths are reported, but the message is clear.

An uneasy truce is called and the Cold War between Europe and the US begins in May 1945...

West Coast
13th Oct 2008, 15:21
This also assumes a united Europe. Not a realistic idea. If the scenario came down to the UK vs US in your scenario, well then I guess it would come down to how many German scientists each side kidnapped.

Scumbag O'Riley
13th Oct 2008, 15:25
Excellent stuff Flypuppy. I would tend to agree with you that the original poster is fishing for compliments.

To me the question could equally be 'What if there had never been an Atlantis'. Well, another Empire would have risen in its place and swaggered around the world for a short time until the next one came along and deposed it.

If Atlantis never existed we might have called this the USA.

Capt.KAOS
13th Oct 2008, 15:42
Re WW1, the US participation was a factor, not a decisive factor, the British and Dominion troops were decisive (the first Tank!). The Central Power military didn’t lose the war, the politicians fearing street riots did. In the same year Russia surrendered to Germany, Germany surrendered to the Triple Entente. The politicians expected even more reasonable conditions than they imposed on Russia. In November 1918, an armistice was signed at Compiegne. Germany, as a sign of good faith, started unilaterally pulling back and dis-arming. It was a fateful move. The TE and Americans moved in like carpet-baggers. By the time the Treaty of Versailles was finally signed in Paris on June 28th, 1919, the Germans realised their error but were already occupied (and here the seeds of WW2 were sowed).

As a matter of fact, the Americans as usual claim to have won the First World War, but Canada, with less than 10% America’s population, lost more men and materials than the USA did.

As for the original thread message, I file this under the "If-Me-Father-Was-Me-Aunty" category.

BenThere
13th Oct 2008, 15:54
As a matter of fact, the Americans as usual claim to have won the First World War, but Canada, with less than 10% America’s population, lost more men and materials than the USA did.


FYI, KAOS, losing more men and materiel is not a good measure of winning a war. Patton had a good take on this very subject.

tony draper
13th Oct 2008, 16:02
True,one suspects the time line would be even more susceptible to the butterfly effect than our climate,don't think it would take a vast change such as the USA never having existed to uttery change our history and present, it could be something as banal as ice cream never having been invented.
:)

mr fish
13th Oct 2008, 16:46
NO REM OR MADONNA, what a wonderful idea:O

Flying_Frisbee
13th Oct 2008, 21:22
No WW2 no penicillin,half the people on prune would have probably died in childhood and the population of the UK would only be about twenty million hmmmm, that may not have been a bad thing.

The rest of the world was managing to run WW2 without the US, was it not? And penicillin? Yer having a laugh, Jimmy.

tony draper
13th Oct 2008, 21:51
If you mean by that penicillin was discovered in the UK? that is true,but it sat on a laboratory shelf a largely ignored medical curiosity until WW2 when the Americans took it over and mass produced it, incidently just in time to cure the plague of pox that broke out among their soldier due to fratrenizing with dirty Europeans. :E

merlinxx
13th Oct 2008, 23:23
Fine question sir, as I'm on the blower to a mate in TX can't an answer (non Websters spelling )right now!

Cap'n Arrr
14th Oct 2008, 01:13
No USA = no Paul Reed Smith = me sad:(

however, in that case, noone would have trained the taliban to fight off the Russians. There would more than likely have been no cold war, although I cant begin to speculate on the effect of that. The other interesting one, if the US didnt develop the nuke, who would have been first?

ampan
14th Oct 2008, 01:25
Flying Frisbee: You are correct about WW2 in Europe: The "Rest Of The World" team was managing to run it, but everyone in that team was Russian - and their coach was Stalin.

In the Pacific, it was all down to the USA.

PS - Apart from the penicillin issue , TV is another one: John Logie Baird was not the inventor of TV, as many poms think. He invented a system of sending images electronically - but that system was not used. The real inventor of TV was an American called Farnsworth.

con-pilot
14th Oct 2008, 01:47
The other interesting one, if the US didnt develop the nuke, who would have been first?

Oh hell, that's the easiest question to answer so far, Germany. :uhoh:

Howard Hughes
14th Oct 2008, 01:48
And probably the first to use it too!:eek:

Buster Hyman
14th Oct 2008, 02:06
Nah, Adolf would've turned the technology into a power station, just like he turned the Me262 into a bomber!:rolleyes::ugh:

Tree
14th Oct 2008, 03:15
My second language would be Russian and I would not be voting tomorrow.
Alaska would not have been purchased.
Not sure about the vodka yet.

CityofFlight
14th Oct 2008, 03:39
IMHO...

Without the immigration of some of the greatest minds, seeking a land of promise, the Industrial Revolution, that benefited the world faster than any other time in history, wouldn't have taken place.

Subsequently, the competitiveness that developed among nations, a bi-product both good and bad, was still a positive because the U.S. was the barometer of measurement.

What shakes down now, in the cusp of this new century, is now up for grabs. I'd like us to step up to the plate, but I think we're behind the curve. Another power will likely surface. I hope the world will have as much of a positive outcome that we offered in our best of times.

BenThere
14th Oct 2008, 04:50
CityofFlight,

We've lived in the best of times, and it's our duty to improve, or at least preserve as best we can, the positive elements that gave us what we have to pass on to the children and heirs.

Serious cultural problems are festering, and I'm fearful that the body politic, which sets the direction, is misguided, and has the wrong tone. But I retain hope that the constitutional framework we have will see us through. Turmoil is coming, to be sure; but the spanking, I hope, will produce a better child.

Scumbag O'Riley
14th Oct 2008, 05:03
I'd actually argue that the greatest development in human history was agriculture, not the steam engine, and agriculture was invented in current day Iraq,

Anybody who is interested in thinking about this in a broad sense instead of just listing some inventions and claiming their ownership might ponder about the writings of Jarod Diamond. In a nutshell, he argues that civilisation can only really develop if the landmass is orientated east-west and if native animals can be domesticated. Eurasia is one such place, and that was indeed where mankind as a technological species developed and flourished.

The Americas are primarily orientated north-south and there are no 'cow' sized animals to domesticate. So, as we can see, no technological humans developed there until the Europeans turned up and introduced them. The Americas, or current day USA, had no impact at all on the really important development of humans as an 'advanced' species as all the good stuff had already happened by then.

Now if Eurasia never existed the current inhabitants of the USA would still be hunter-gathering, but the opposite does not apply.

Essantially in the big picture The USA doesn't matter, but Eurasia does.

What is also of interest is how come Europeans turned up on the shores of the Americas and conquered and not the other Eurasians out there, i.e the Chinese. Well, the Chinese had the largest ocean going fleet in the world before the Europeans but the Emperor was an inward loooking chap and decided not to go. Had he done so then the USA would have spoken Chinese, or some other non European language.

Lots of forks in the road, and Eurasia would have done it all in due time and the Americas would have been of little impact if not 'discovered' by them several hundred years ago.

CityofFlight
14th Oct 2008, 05:03
Ben There...all ego and divisions aside....I couldn't agree more.

How to take back our country is not in the rightful hands of either party right now, I'm afraid. While it's in the minds of every citizen, our votes do nothing for the right outcome.


Scumbag...I don't mean to diminish your premise, but the topic is one thing and you present another. The industrial revolution exported the best of its inventions that improved every nation-- democratic or not, capitalistic or not.

We may disagree, but this rise of industrialization enhanced every nation's ability to prosper with all other advancements.

Flypuppy
14th Oct 2008, 05:49
City of Flight,

The Industrial Revolution began and continued in Great Britain in the late 18th Century. The British exported railways to the US, without which the West would never have been won. Even so the American Industrial Revolution did not really get started until after the end of the American Civil War. Up to that point, most factories were water powered.

However, please keep changing history to fit your closed and narrow political viewpoint. It provides much entertainment. :rolleyes:

CityofFlight
14th Oct 2008, 06:22
Fly Puppy... there's no need to be arrogant or sarcastic. There are plenty of accolades, but the point of my post was to mention the exports of the IR in America to the rest of the world. Much like the credit you're trying to claim in GB--but with no mention of any other country. If you know your history, you know there were 2 industrial revolutions. One in GB that took spinning and weaving machines, operated by water, and converted the use of steam. But the use of the railway system was only of benefit in America, once the 2nd industrial revolution took place on the east coast.

Shall I go on? Since you didn't mention it, perhaps I should.


The first occurred in Great Britain during the late eighteenth century, and the second began during the mid-nineteenth century in America and Germany.

Industrialization in America involved three important developments. First, transportation was expanded. Second, electricity was effectively harnessed. Third, improvements were made to industrial processes such as improving the refining process and accelerating production. The government helped protect American manufacturers by passing a protective tariff.

Shall I introduce the names of Eli Whitney and Elias Howe & Samual Morse and their contribution to the rest of the world in the late 1800's?

Honestly...I'm not trying to turn this into a Pi$$ing contest. If you want to remain sarcastic and you find my posts 'entertaining', so be it. If you don't feel that anyone but GB possessed the contributions of the Industrial Revolutions, then you can remain in your own head and space.

Cheers!

Cof F

Flypuppy
14th Oct 2008, 07:47
City of Flight,
Without the immigration of some of the greatest minds, seeking a land of promise, the Industrial Revolution, that benefited the world faster than any other time in history, wouldn't have taken place.Seems pretty clear and unequivocal to me. You say that without the USA the Industrial Revolution would not have taken place. That is obviously not correct.

You then put James Watt in your list of AMERICAN inventors. James Watt was a Scotsman who lived and died in Great Britain. Alexander Graham Bell, a Scotsman who did most of his work in Canada, Rudolph Diesel - a German born in Paris, France and died in the English Channel (you can't get much more European than that!). So I am sorry to say that I am having great difficulty in taking you seriously.

If you want to introduce the name of Eli Whitney, you could open the discussion on how the cotton gin made slavery more sustainable.

tony draper
14th Oct 2008, 08:11
Indeed, and Madam City please remove the name Thomas Edison from you list as inventor of the Electric Light Bulb,every prunner knowns that Joseph Swan of the Town of Gateshead in the County of Durham England was the inventor of the electric light bulb and had his home in the said town of Gateshead gloriously illuminated by fully functioning electric light when the plagiarist Edison was still connecting batteries to Buffallo turds in a pathetic attempt to get them to emit light.
:suspect::rolleyes:

BlueWolf
14th Oct 2008, 09:13
Not to mention Richard Pearse beating Wilbur and Orville into the air by a good nine months, just outside Timaru, and doing it with proper ailerons and tricycle undercarriage to boot ;)

13thDuke
14th Oct 2008, 09:56
Just realised that if there had never been a Belgium, then we would never have had the sax solo in Gerry Rafferty's Baker Street.

And that's it.

tony draper
14th Oct 2008, 10:18
Perhaps another oft overlooked reason the Industrial Revolution commenced in England was we rid ourselves of the baleful influence of the Church of Rome very early allowing our thinkers to progress science and technology without finishing up on a pile of firewood.
:rolleyes:

shedhead
14th Oct 2008, 10:29
what! Do you mean Raphael Ravenscroft was Belgian? oh my god!
as for the second industrial revolution well as most of the inventors were originally from Europe if there had been no USA then those inventions would have happened in Europe I would have thought.

Capt.KAOS
14th Oct 2008, 11:00
I've always learned that the Industrial Revolution was following the Agriculture Revolution where more efficient and less labor intensive production lead to surplus workforce going to the cotton industry in England.

Flying_Frisbee
14th Oct 2008, 11:02
Perhaps another oft overlooked reason the Industrial Revolution commenced in England was we rid ourselves of the baleful influence of the Church of Rome very early allowing our thinkers to progress science and technology without finishing up on a pile of firewood.

So how come Switzerland didn't come up with the Industrial Revolution right after Calvin?

tony draper
14th Oct 2008, 11:07
Well they got as far as the cuckoo clock and decided Banking was easier,one didn't get dirt under one's finger nails Banking.
The other driving force behind progress is of course war,and we Brits were and are a belligerent warlike folk.
:)

Mac the Knife
14th Oct 2008, 11:15
Tony Draper said

"...penicillin was discovered in the UK? that is true,but it sat on a laboratory shelf a largely ignored medical curiosity until WW2 when the Americans took it over and mass produced it,...."

which is complete cobblers.

Fleming "discovered" penicillin but decided it was too unstable to be of any use and laid it aside. Years later, Howard Florey (Australian), Ernest Chain (Russo-German) and Norman Heatley (English), working in the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology at Oxford, stabilised, isolated, tested (first on animals and then on humans) and produced penicillin.

When it became obvious that they had an antibiotic of extraordinary power with no toxicity, Florey and later Heatley went to the USA to try and find companies to mass produce it. Recognising its value, the Americans, with admirable speed devised better methods of mass production, improved the yield of penicillin from the mould and started true mass production. The rest, as they say, is history.

Despite having done very little, Fleming received the lions share of the glory (and 1/3 of the Nobel Prize) while poor Heatley was passed over and forgotten.

.....do try to get things right Herr Draper !

:ok:

tony draper
14th Oct 2008, 11:39
Well the thing one said about galloping nob rot was true anyway. :uhoh:

Track Coastal
14th Oct 2008, 12:03
Nobel Prize - Physiology or Medicine 1945

Sir Howard Florey - Biography (http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/1945/florey-bio.html)

Thank you gents, carry on.

TC

Mac the Knife
14th Oct 2008, 12:26
http://archive.sciencewatch.com/interviews/norman_heatley_big.jpg

Obituary: Norman Heatley | Education | The Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/2004/jan/08/guardianobituaries.highereducation)

An Interview with Norman Heatly (http://archive.sciencewatch.com/interviews/norman_heatly.htm)

Norman Heatley - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norman_Heatley)

larssnowpharter
14th Oct 2008, 14:40
I'd actually argue that the greatest development in human history was agriculture, not the steam engine, and agriculture was invented in current day Iraq

On the other hand, I would argue that the greatest invention in human history was the mathematical concept of zero.

I mean, if the Romans had been left to it we would still be trying to do equations in Roman numerals.

How hard would that have been.:=

tony draper
14th Oct 2008, 14:49
Nah,the greatest invention was the Knife fork and spoon, IMHO of course,one finds one employs em a lot more often than equations :)

VnV2178B
14th Oct 2008, 15:47
Let us Brits at least knock out 'Robert FultonRegular Steamboat service on the Hudson River1807'

as Symington's Charlotte Dundas had been sailing (steaming) along for several years by then, delivering coal. and Mr. Fulton had been to have a look at her, too. Pity, then, that the Good Lord Bridgewater died when he did.

(and Edison's electric light was also anticipated by Mr. Swann, Dr. Draper hasn't picked up on that one yet)

VnV

Jetex Jim
14th Oct 2008, 16:02
Eli Witney, Interchangeable parts, 1793!

Crikey. the British Aircraft industry is only just catching on to that now, or so those who've worked on Nimrod tell me. :hmm:

tony draper
14th Oct 2008, 17:11
Oh yes he has Mr Vn, see post 77.:rolleyes:

Cap'n Arrr
15th Oct 2008, 00:58
Okay, here's another hypothetical. If US didn't exist, and Germany was defeated by Russia in WWII, what would have happened after that?

marcopolosnap
15th Oct 2008, 01:53
Very good question, Cap'n Arrr. Let me propose yet another hypothetical: Suppose the South had prevailed in 1865 and there were two seperate political states in the area between Canada and Mexico. Further, let us assume that the western territories which joined the Union post-1865 had formed one or several nations on the continent rather than aligning with either the "Federation" (North) or the "Confederacy" (South).

con-pilot
15th Oct 2008, 02:59
Okay, here's another hypothetical. If US didn't exist, and Germany was defeated by Russia in WWII, what would have happened after that?

Comrade you forgot to say Comrade after that post, we will see you soon.

Oh, and this website would not exist.

CityofFlight
15th Oct 2008, 04:32
Flypuppy...Mr. Drapes...et al


So I am sorry to say that I am having great difficulty in taking you seriously.



Well, what a surprise on Pprune! I'm just a girl, out numbered by some feisty boys! ;) It's a great learning experience though and I'll post again and again and be taken to task when appropriate. I'm okay with that.

It's been a long time since I took Western Civ 200 & 300 level in college. I depended on my memory for some things and relied on the internet--Yikes, Wikepedia even, for my cutting and pasting. The list of Industrial Revolutionaries were not limited to American as I interpreted and indicated in parenthesis. My mistake...to err is human, right? I've now deleted the list entirely.

Mr. Drapes, I truly stand corrected regarding Mr. Swann. Apparently, the devil is in the details and there were certainly some back and forth legal wranglings between Edison and Swann. Funny (not) how history & literature have cheated some rightful claims.

On the other hand, Flypuppy, I did state that many talented minds immigrated to the U.S. While Alexander Graham Bell may not have taken up permanent residence in Boston, he found Boston Univ to be a thriving haven for his science and research. As I'm sure you know, he established a lab at the university and only spent his summers back in Canada. It was in Boston that some of his best achievements were established, along with some of the best collaborations--including ones with Edison. I suppose that explains why our history likes to claim him and so many--as our own. When so many inventions were registered in the US patent office and proven in the halls of America, the historians end up doing what they do. The ground was fertile here for attracting some great minds and inventors from all over. Some came and went. Some stayed.

So, gentlemen.... As it pertained to the topic in this thread, I will remain steadfast in my belief that our young country attracted some great talent of which great things happened and then were exported back to the world. No more, no less. Not taking away what came from any other country at any other time.

Cheers! ;) :ok:

Jetex Jim
15th Oct 2008, 07:08
Wot no USA?

No Joan Baez, no Chrissie Hynde, no Jackson Browne, no Roy Orbison, no Tom Petty, no Donald Fagen. ??
No ex-wife no. 2 ??

And what sort of a world would it be without this?

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f1/North_American_F86-01.JPG/300px-North_American_F86-01.JPG

No, I won't stand for it.

So long as I'm running this universe, there WILL be a USA.

ORAC
15th Oct 2008, 07:48
Bell had quite a bit in common with Edison - including taking credit for the invention of others. The telephone, for example, was invented by Antonio Meucci (http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_701713625/meucci_antonio.html). His prior rights to the discovery were even accepted and recognised by the US House of Representatives (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2002/jun/17/humanities.internationaleducationnews). :cool:

tony draper
15th Oct 2008, 08:00
Indeed the history of invention and discovery is littered with plagiarism,once someone is credited with summat it's almost impossible to get the history books changed.
History Books have a great deal of inertia.
:(

Jetex Jim
15th Oct 2008, 08:44
...no Neil Armstrong, no Burt Rutan, no Carl Sagan, no Raymond Chandler, no Richard Fyneman, no Robert Heinlein

...no Marshall Plan

Scumbag O'Riley
15th Oct 2008, 09:06
.... no Al Quaida ?????

Jetex Jim
15th Oct 2008, 09:58
.... no Al Quaida ?????

Possibly, but seems likely that Britain's own self interested devotion to Saudia played no small part there also.

Scumbag O'Riley
15th Oct 2008, 10:06
A very intelligent and open minded response Jetex. :ok:

Track Coastal
15th Oct 2008, 11:32
Some fine cars...56 Corvette, well...any Corvette, Z28 Camaro, Pontiac Trans-Am., The MUSTANG!!!!., Pontiac GTO, Chrysler C300, Plymouth Road Runner, COBRAS!!!


The GT40 winning Le Mans 66-69
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a6/GT40_at_Goodwood.jpg/250px-GT40_at_Goodwood.jpg

The new millenium GT 2003 - 2006
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/cd/2005_Ford_GT.jpg/250px-2005_Ford_GT.jpg

brickhistory
15th Oct 2008, 14:05
Some interesting replies. Some not so much.

My take on the major geo-political events of the past century without a USA:

WWI would still have occurred. The US' existence was not a part of the equation for the start of the war. The tangled web of alliances and royal 'face' would still have led to the fight.

It would have been fought to a draw sometime in 1919. Both sides would have been so economically and population count devastated that it would have just petered out.

Hitler would still have had the fertile economic and wounded pride ground to flourish, Britain and France would have been unwilling to spend much on defense because they were so broke following the conflict. Not too unlike the reality.

The Soviet Union would have progressed along its real lines until WWII.

Assuming that Hitler played his offensives in the same way, Britain would have hung on into 1943, but eventually the U-boats would have starved her, at least the Isles part of the equation into submission. The Monarchy and government might have fled to Canada to carry on. The British Isles would have become some sort of Vichy-like creature. Neither an active belligerant nor an open ally. A constant blockade and expanding U-boat force could have enforced this status.

The Russians would have been driven much further west, although I don't believe they would have capitulated. Stalin would have sacrificed another 30 million if needed.

Eventually, Germany, even able to move even the reduced forces in the West from the fall of the British Isles, would have found enough 'lebensraum' to satisfy Hitler. No A-bomb would have been developed (during the war) as it wasn't needed.

Japan would still have embarked on its East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere scheme (I don't believe the US was the direct opponent for that - the European colonial powers were. The Washington Naval Treaty could have/probably would have been held in Geneva or the like).

However, Japan would have been successful in conquering and holding much of its expansion. Eventually, the indigeneous (sp?) people would have eventually overthrown them by the 1960s.

In the Middle East, Germany would have followed the British lead in the arbitrary lines on a map, although I'm pretty sure there wouldn't be an Israel. So another boogeyman would have taken that perennial conflict, probably Shi'ite/Sunni. Radical Islam would focus its attacks on Germany/Europe with subsequent military actions through the decades with the subsequent cause for revenge against the infidels.

Oil would still be the world's lifeblood.

Nukes, developed in the early 1960s by Germany, would create new room in Tehran and Mecca/Medina for starting over there.

For some odds/ends, South America would largely be fascist along the lines of Peron.

China, carved up by the Japanese, would still be a largely poor agrarian state with little future, but as that's been a status for centuries, it would bid it's time a bit more.

Africa, well, there's just not much to change there successfully. It's resources would be valuable to the industrial world, but the basic chaos of the continent would be unchanged.

Capt.KAOS
15th Oct 2008, 16:06
WWI would still have occurred. The US' existence was not a part of the equation for the start of the war. The tangled web of alliances and royal 'face' would still have led to the fight.

It would have been fought to a draw sometime in 1919. Both sides would have been so economically and population count devastated that it would have just petered out.Wouldn't have made any difference. As I mentioned before, WW1 was ended because of political not military reasons.The Soviet Union would have progressed along its real lines until WWII.Hitler might n
ot have invaded Russia, because he declared war on the US expecting Japan would help him on Russia. Britain would have hung on into 1943, but eventually the U-boats would have starved her, at least the Isles part of the equation into submission. The Monarchy and government might have fled to Canada to carry on. The British Isles would have become some sort of Vichy-like creature. Neither an active belligerant nor an open ally. A constant blockade and expanding U-boat force could have enforced this status.Hitler never really intended to invade Great Brittain. He rather might have worked on a pact with GB against Russia. Besides GB already had the Enigma deciphered in 1940, it's secrets given by Polish.scientists.

West Coast
15th Oct 2008, 16:13
Pontiac GTO

The goat ain't a half bad choice, but the premiere Pontiac would be a 1973 SD-455 Trans Am.

con-pilot
15th Oct 2008, 16:15
Hitler never really intended to invade Great Brittain

Then why did he have all those landing barges built and placed in the French ports?

CityofFlight
15th Oct 2008, 16:20
...no Marshall Plan?


Yikes...who would marshall the planes? :eek: ;)

Cap'n Arrr
16th Oct 2008, 01:37
With both WWI and II, US wasn't greatly involved until the Lusitania was sunk, or Pearl Harbour. Many believe that Hitler lost the war because he invaded Russia, however without the numbers that USA provided, it could have been over before then...

Also, without the US Japan would have most certainly invaded Australia

Buster Hyman
16th Oct 2008, 02:12
Assuming that Hitler played his offensives in the same way, Britain would have hung on into 1943, but eventually the U-boats would have starved her, at least the Isles part of the equation into submission. The Monarchy and government might have fled to Canada to carry on. The British Isles would have become some sort of Vichy-like creature. Neither an active belligerant nor an open ally. A constant blockade and expanding U-boat force could have enforced this status.

Interesting Brick, but I think you've underestimated one thing....

http://timesonline.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2007/12/18/dadsarmy.jpg

con-pilot
16th Oct 2008, 02:20
If there had never been a USA.

There would have never been any US Presidential Debates.

Which would be a good thing. :p

pigboat
16th Oct 2008, 03:20
Which would be a good thing.
You been watching Martha Stewart again? :D;)

Have you heard Robin Williams' take on the difference between Palin and Cheney? When Palin shoots ya, ya stay down. :ok:

Howard Hughes
16th Oct 2008, 04:59
Also, without the US Japan would have most certainly invaded Australia
So we would have been eating sushi and whale steaks instead of hamburgers, is that necessarily a bad thing for a nation surrounded by water?:eek:

CityofFlight
16th Oct 2008, 05:18
HH, considering the species you have in your waters, eating Sushi is like bait eating bait, isn't it? :p;)

Can shark suffer the equivilent of Mad Cow and who wants to find out?

tony draper
16th Oct 2008, 07:34
Sushi is what Sharks call Australians.:uhoh:

ExSp33db1rd
16th Oct 2008, 08:56
...no Neil Armstrong, no Burt Rutan, no Carl Sagan, no Raymond Chandler, no Richard Fyneman, no Robert Heinlein

...no Marshall Plan


No Dubbya, hence no single handed wrecking of Americe by ONE MAN !! ( and maybe the whole of the Western World as we know it now ? )

Flypuppy
16th Oct 2008, 09:39
Hitler would still have had the fertile economic and wounded pride ground to flourish, Britain and France would have been unwilling to spend much on defense because they were so broke following the conflict.

Moot point. If the First World War came to grinding halt in 1919, then the Versailles Treaty would have been a much different document. If it was a stalemate, there would have been no winners or losers. There would probably have been no requirement for Germany to be so heavily humiliated, nor a requirement for them to pay reparations.

The threat of Bolshevism would have been enough to provide a common enemy, and the possiblity that the major powers would have joined together to form an alliance to prevent the Soviet Union from attacking from the East. Lloyd-George was keen to keep Germany as a barrier to resist the expected spread of communism. The Terms of the Treaty of Versailles were regarded as so unfair that the Nazi party had the ground to grow. Had the Treaty of Versailles not existed then things may well have been very different.

The combined militaries of France Britain and Germany would have faced the Soviets. It should be remembered that at Waterloo only about a hundred years earlier, the British were allied with the Germans, Belgians, Dutch and Prussians against the French Grande Armée. It is not inconceivable that a united European army could have been raised against the Russians.

Curious Pax
16th Oct 2008, 10:19
What Flypuppy said! The behaviour of the Soviets after WW1 would have been pretty decisive in how things panned out. If they had continued to try and spread Communism by subterfuge, rather than conquest then the Cold War may well have started earlier, but without the availability of nukes would probably have escalated into a war at some point - but most likely stayed European. However if Germany/France/Britain had been united against them then the western powers would have had a far chance of victory. In those circumstances Stalin would probably have been deposed, and an alternative system of government imposed - what sort, and how it would have behaved is anyone's guess!

Africa and Asia may also have developed differently, as the European colonial powers would have been more drained by WW1, and so may have pulled out of their colonies in the 1920s instead of hanging on for 30-40 years more. Japan would probably have been the regional power in Asia, but without European or US interests there to cause friction, it may well have been contained within Asia. The Europeans wouldn't have cared what the Japanese did as long as their access to trade wasn't significantly disrupted, though whether they went near Australia/New Zealand may have been a crucial factor.

There is an argument that part of Africa's problems stem from the fact that it has only started learning how to govern itself in terms of nations (as opposed to tribes) since the colonists left. If that had happened 30-40 years earlier they might be a lot more stable there now than they are. A recent report suggested that in general terms African stabilisation is starting to happen (which I know it is all relative), so it's not a totally outlandish theory. The downside from an environmental point of view would be that instead of worrying about China, India and Brazil ramping up their consumption of oil etc, we would be adding more countries to that list - imagine what Nigeria could be like if it got its act together for instance.

tony draper
16th Oct 2008, 10:37
I think we should be greatfull the cousins didn't come in on the German side.:uhoh:

ORAC
16th Oct 2008, 11:47
But if there hadn't been an America, there wouldn't have been a Civil War. Without a civil war the new techniques of war used in that conflict - mass artillery, trench warfare, mass conscription etc, would not have been so avidly watched and recorded by so many European military observers; those observers would not have gone home and introduced them into their strategies; so WWI, if had happened, might have been fought using the previous techniques and finished in a short series of disparate battles.

You can posit many alternate histories, Harry Turtledove has written dozens of them. I particularly like Guns of the South (http://www.amazon.com/Guns-South-Harry-Turtledove/dp/0345413660/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1224157553&sr=1-12), about what might have happened if the South had had the AK-47....

frostbite
16th Oct 2008, 12:09
If there had never been a USA.

We would not have had 'the special relationship'.

Or involvement in the Iraq War.

Or the sub-prime destruction of the banking system.

Forkandles
16th Oct 2008, 12:09
You can posit many alternate histories...

Indeed ORAC, and it'd be tiresome reading them all.
Therefore, I'm with Charley Kyles on this one. I wonder if he's related to Roy Walker?

http://www.goosepondmusic.com/images/ThankyouLordCover1.jpg

Matari
16th Oct 2008, 15:25
Flypuppy:

If it was a stalemate, there would have been no winners or losers. There would probably have been no requirement for Germany to be so heavily humiliated, nor a requirement for them to pay reparations.
It is not inconceivable that a united European army could have been raised against the Russians. Interesting post. I'm wondering about the concept of stalemate, though. Without a winner or loser, it just means that the combatants live to fight another day. This is all speculation of course, but let's say a wounded Germany, Russia and Western European alliance all agreed to lay down arms in exhaustion from WWI.

Would that really provide fertile ground for the formation of a new, strong alliance against Russia? Or, would combatants just resume at their old positions, trying to resolve the previously unresolved conflict?

brickhistory
16th Oct 2008, 16:01
Missed this previously:

It is not inconceivable that a united European army could have been raised against the Russians.

like is happening now?

Flypuppy
16th Oct 2008, 21:55
You are in danger of rifting way from your original premise, brick.

However, on saying that, I am sure if there was a real need there would be a pan-european army. Then again, if there was no USA after 1900, it could very well be that would be the case.

nahsuD
16th Oct 2008, 22:38
However, on saying that, I am sure if there was a real need there would be a pan-european army. Then again, if there was no USA after 1900, it could very well be that would be the case.

You see, Brick, it is American fault that there is no pan-european army. They only have a pot-european army now.

BenThere
16th Oct 2008, 23:23
I've generally felt that the emergence of the EU post-EEC was motivated by the desire to counter the perceived hegemony of the superpowers. If you accept that, it follows that in the absence of the US, that motivation would be moot, and the Europeans would continue to fight each other as they always have.

Continuing on that premise, Europe would never maintain a collective standing military as the nations could not develop trust that the grand army would not one day turn on them, or agree upon who to fight and when. Who to lead the military would also be problematic.

The recent banking crisis in Europe demonstrated how far EUtopia goes. As soon as a challenging problem emerged, it was every man for himself, damn the collective will. Once again Ireland proved the exception to the would-be rule.

brickhistory
16th Oct 2008, 23:50
Flypuppy,

My point, while admittedly sarcastic, was meant seriously. Would Europe have been able to cooperate/fund/maintain and more importantly, use such a pan-European Army against a Soviet onslaught?

Both ancient and recent history says otherwise. You used Waterloo as an example. But it was Europe against other European components and, therefore, not a good example for me.

Thus, I stand by my point.

Matari
17th Oct 2008, 03:25
Ben There:

I've generally felt that the emergence of the EU post-EEC was motivated by the desire to counter the perceived hegemony of the superpowers.Don't forget that the EEC/EU started as a simple coal trading organization in 1951 between France and Germany, and was meant to keep the two countries from fighting each other. The United States heavily supported and promoted the formation of the EEC and then EU, as it developed through the original 1957 Treaty of Rome and later the Maastricht treaty.

The more cynical Europeans say this support was only because the U.S. wanted offsetting lackey states to counteract the USSR. However, others realize that the United States had a self-interest in fostering strong, democratic, economically viable trading states that would replace the warring tribal states that had existed for centuries in Europe.

Thanks to many courageous and visionary European and American leaders, aided by well-educated post-war generations, and protected by a military umbrella provided by the U.S. and Nato, the EU has been a smashing economic success. As our European friends keep reminding us on this board.

As a political entity, however, the EU has a very long way to go. Massive redundant bureaucracy and costs. No pan-European statesmen-leaders, no constitutional framework, no common military, no common foreign policy. Still no European phone number.

Because of this lack of political progress, Europeans will continue to view themselves as simply "stakeholders" instead of true global leaders. Europeans deserve better than their leaders have given them.

Impress to inflate
17th Oct 2008, 05:39
if the locals had done a proper job with their immigration policy when the illegal boat people turned up in the mayflower, then we wouldn't be having this discussion.

larssnowpharter
17th Oct 2008, 07:48
Europeans deserve better than their leaders have given them.

Hear, hear!:D:D

You can say that again!

Europeans deserve better than their leaders have given them.