by Max Barry

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The Burlesque Republic of The Centauri

“What do you want you Moon-Faced Assassin of Joy?”

Category: Compulsory Consumerist State
Civil Rights:
Political Freedoms:

Regional Influence: Enforcer

Location: Babylon 5


The Centauri

Population45.901 billion

CapitalCentauri Prime
LeaderEmperor Jaffa
Faiththe pantheon of fifty deities


The Burlesque Republic of The Centauri is a gargantuan, efficient nation, ruled by Emperor Jaffa with an iron fist, and notable for its unlimited-speed roads, absence of drug laws, and complete absence of social welfare. The hard-nosed, hard-working, cynical, humorless, devout population of 45.901 billion Centauris are rabid consumers, partly through choice and partly because the government tells them to and dissenters tend to vanish from their homes at night.

The minute, corrupt, pro-business government, or what there is of one, juggles the competing demands of Defense, Industry, and Education. It meets to discuss matters of state in the capital city of Centauri Prime. Income tax is unheard of.

The frighteningly efficient Centaurian economy, worth an astonishing 42,334 trillion duckets a year, is driven almost entirely by the private sector, which is broadly diversified and led by the Arms Manufacturing industry, with major contributions from Information Technology, Gambling, and Automobile Manufacturing. Average income is a breathtaking 922,292 duckets, but there is a vast disparity between incomes, with the richest 10% of citizens earning 8,639,909 per year while the poor average 8,281, a ratio of 1,043 to 1.

Citizens complain about a burning sensation after bathing, the ongoing space elevator construction project has elevated the national debt to all new levels, cash-strapped junkies lick rabbits for a cheap high, and Centaurian farm salmon are known for being both horribly diseased and remarkably acrobatic. Crime, especially youth-related, is so common that it is unusual to encounter someone following the law, probably because of the absence of a police force. The Centauri's national animal is the Narn, which is also the nation's favorite main course, and its national religion is the pantheon of fifty deities.

The Centauri is ranked 21st in the world and 1st in Babylon 5 for Largest Gambling Industry, scoring 71,687.47 on the Kelly Criterion Productivity Index.

Highest Workforce Participation Rate: 4thLowest Overall Tax Burden: 4thLargest Automobile Manufacturing Sector: 6thGreatest Rich-Poor Divides: 7thHighest Wealthy Incomes: 8thHighest Disposable Incomes: 8thHighest Economic Output: 9thLargest Basket Weaving Sector: 12thMost Politically Apathetic Citizens: 14thMost Armed: 20thLargest Gambling Industry: 21stLargest Insurance Industry: 23rdHighest Average Incomes: 26thLargest Soda Pop Sector: 26thLargest Cheese Export Sector: 27thLargest Furniture Restoration Industry: 31stMost Avoided: 35thMost Efficient Economies: 47thHighest Crime Rates: 48thLargest Pizza Delivery Sector: 48thLargest Manufacturing Sector: 51stFattest Citizens: 51stLargest Populations: 56thLargest Timber Woodchipping Industry: 56thLargest Mining Sector: 70thLargest Agricultural Sector: 72ndHighest Unexpected Death Rate: 82ndMost Scientifically Advanced: 132ndMost Cultured: 182ndLargest Publishing Industry: 221stRudest Citizens: 293rdMost Devout: 324thSmartest Citizens: 336thLargest Arms Manufacturing Sector: 400thMost Rebellious Youth: 412thLargest Retail Industry: 707thLargest Information Technology Sector: 1,061stMost Corrupt Governments: 1,084thTop
Largest Governments: 4,793rdMost Valuable International Artwork: 8,339thLargest Black Market: 9,808thLargest Trout Fishing Sector: 9,873rdTop
Most Advanced Defense Forces: 15,826thMost Subsidized Industry: 15,952ndMost World Assembly Endorsements: 16,362ndMost Pro-Market: 28,810thMost Stationary: 29,267th

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