Wednesday, August 08, 2007


The words "ULTIMA RATIO CIVITUM" is engraved on every personal weapon, crew served weapon, and on a special plate installed on all military vehicles and spacecraft of the Freyan armed forces and the armed forces of the Confederation of Ursa Major.

Yes, I know (Ayn) Rand said that a gun is not an argument two centuries ago...

My grandfather once told me that were it not for the distance and the vacuum of space (between Eos and Freya) it would have been possible to hear the Eosians sneering at us for that particular practice.

Of course that sneering ended after their world was invaded and occupied by the Neomarxists.

-- Admiral Elizabeth Weymouth, Lectures on History and Moral Philosophy.

Now some people think it is a bit silly of us to engrave a phrase in ancient Latin on our weapons, vehicles, and spacecraft.

But consider this, all of our g-carriers, tanks, and other military vehicles are designed to carried aboard standard commercial starships. The dimensions of the cargo holds are in turn determined by the dimensions of the old Terran ISO-cargo containers which are still in common use. The dimensions of the standard cargo containers were originally determined by the requirement that they be carried on a standard railroad flatcar. The dimensions of the railroad flatcar was in turn determined by width of the wheels and tracks. This standard was adopted in imitation of the standard width of carts and wagons built in the British Isles, which used wagon trails first marked out in the time of the Roman Empire. Which in turn used a standard width chosen by a wagon builder in Ancient Rome.

Now, given the influence that a unnamed Ancient Roman wheelwright had on the design and deployment of military technology in the twenty-third century, is it really that silly of us to adopt an Ancient Latin slogan for our own use?

-- Ibid.

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