|Article of the Month — June 30, 2015: Snowdrop Acts of 2484|
The Snowdrop Acts of 2484 were a series of taxation acts that were passed by the Unified Earth Government on January 20, 2484. The acts were passed by James "Snowdrop" MacArthur (2481-2485) during his third year as President of the UEG. The Snowdrop Acts consisted of eighteen laws and regulations that, in short, imposed taxes on goods, supplies, services, and support in the Outer Colonies. The purpose of these acts were to gain revenue that could be used to promote more colonization, replenish the economy of the Inner Colonies that had recently suffered from war, and to remind the Outer Colonies that they still belong to the UEG and are not autonomous.
The 24th and 25th century were times of great expansion into the vacuum of space. The era of colonization had relished in their glory, and hundreds of worlds were terraformed and populated. The Unified Earth Government was having difficulty maintaining control, lawfulness, and governance over the Outer Colonies. In the mid 2400s, the Inner Colonies had erupted into conflict over the idea of state versus federal laws and economic differences from the Inner and Outer Colonies. The war was land-based and fighting was seen on around sixteen different worlds. It lasted from around 2440-2469. The Inner Colonies were where the economy had circulated, and as a result of war, the economy was shaken badly.
With conflict at an end, the UEG was responsible for the recovery of the economy. President MacArthur proposed the Snowdrop Acts as his solution. The government exploited the resources of the Outer Colonies hoping to replenish the suffering economy. Imports, exports, trade, goods and supplies, services, and support were all taxed. Producers of goods had to hand over 15% of their produce and profit to the UEG. The colonists did not sit well with the taxes. They viewed the Snowdrop Acts as going against the promises of the constitution and the agreements established when the Outer Colonies were established. Furthermore, the colonists were barely able to survive with such heavy taxes on what kept their lifestyle operating for the past decades.
With the Snowdrop Acts in place, controversy and protest in the Outer Colonies began to spread. Carthage was the first to act on this growing spite. In 2486, the colony declared separation and independence from the Unified Earth Government. This declaration was treated with scrutiny and the UNSC was ordered to lay siege against the world. Although violence didn't occur, for two years, the UNSC and Carthage government, which became a confederacy, had waited in a Mexican stand off. The UEG caved in and allowed Carthage their independence, so long as they agreed to not condone acts that went against UEG law.
Carthage became a symbol of liberation against the UEG, and groups from throughout the Outer Colonies were inspired, through inspired to a fault. In 2492, the citizens of Far Isle, who were suffering from poverty and depression because of the Snowdrop Acts, erupted into violence and riots were raged across the settlements. In response, the UNSC authorized the use of nuclear weapons on Far Isle. The plan was intended to be covert, but colonists who fled the riots and witnessed the bombing from afar had spread word of this act. Not too long after, the Insurrection had began.
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