A fork from the Rimwards thread, about filling out the Argonauts:
It seems that rather a lot of us who happen to identify to some extent with the Argonauts might have some working knowledge of how they might go about things. It would be intersting for us to fork() off a separate discussion thread and write our own, that could eventually be collected into a netbook. This has already been done for parts of Mars, so why not a political faction?
To get us started, here are some relevant canon:
Argonauts: A faction of techno-progressive scientists that promote responsible and ethical use of technology. (p. 25)
"Even numerous scientists and engineers, who had previously worked as pawns in corporate expansions, adopted a technoprogressive stance. That’s how the argonauts were born, you know, taking their name from a previous group of scientists who advised the US government and Pentagon on science and policy called the Jasons. Faced with reprisals from their corporate masters, a number of argonauts defected from the hypercorps, in some cases taking key resources and research with them, while others went underground." (p.33) (BF 40-20)
Memes: Open Source Society, Information Freedom, Social Responsibility, Techno-Progressivism
Main Stations: Mitre Station (Lunar Orbit), Markov (Kuiper Belt), Hooverman-Geischecker (Sun)
The group calling themselves argonauts is a public organization advocating the socially responsible use of technology. The group chose its name from the pre-Fall Jasons, an advisory group that consulted for the US government on matters of scientific and technological progress and its possible dangers. The argonauts likewise offer consultation services to political and economic powers throughout the solar system, but strictly refuse to be drawn into the solar system’s political affairs in any way. Despite a pre-Fall break with many hypercorps before the Fall, which in some cases included expropriating corporate data and resources, the argonauts re-earned favor by providing their expertise in combating the TITANs to all during the Fall.
The argonauts are strong proponents of the open source movement, advocating open access to technology and information. In their view, providing equal access to transhumanity’s knowledge and achievements will further transhuman growth and security, so that all of transhumanity is more prepared for future threats and challenges. Thus the argonauts often insist that payment for their services come in the way of releasing otherwise unobtainable information— hypercorp proprietary secrets, research data, nanofab blueprints, hidden pre-Fall archives, etc.—to the public mesh. The argonauts maintain several open databases and archives for this speci c purpose.
While primarily an open organization, the argonauts are rumored to ultimately report to an elite inner circle. Supporting this theory is the existence of the medeans, the organization’s clandestine paramilitary wing, performing bodyguard services to high level argonauts and protecting the group’s assets." (p. 79)
I have left out the descriptions of their stations.
The argonauts of myth were not just the companion to Jason, but also the great Greek-myth crossover: every hero was there - Atalanta, Augeas, Autolycus, Castor and Pollux, Cepheus, Hercules, Nestor, Perseus, Theseus... The Jason group was indeed named after Jason himself. Why the link to the advisory group? What did it do that so strongly impressed the argonauts? The squabble with DARPA hardly counts.
The defections BF 40 and onwards are clearly an important part of the formation of the Argonauts and predates the anarchist/scum defections by decades. These were the guys who partially showed how it could be done.
The organisation needs a great deal of funding: where is it coming from? Licensing, consulting and bartering seems unlikely to reach the necessary level.
The culture sounds like it is a radicalised form of the scientific community. Science as a lifestyle and ideology and not just a calling. But are argonaut stations 100% argonaut (including argonaut street sweepers), or are they like universities or companies where the argonauts work on the core stuff and then hire people to support it?
The argonauts are obviously security and resiliency conscious, given their many enemies. Did they get this good due to hard lessons (in which case we should expect a lot of the defections in BF 40 to have failed) or did they start out with secret coordination and allies? In that case, who?