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Dec 12, 2022

This episode carries content warnings for the use of real life news audio recordings of protests and riots, cruelty, discussion of medical and student debt, discussion of combat injuries, layered conversations and heavy crosstalk.

In all societies, but especially in one as vast as the Divine Principality, people are separated from history as it is made. No one can be everywhere all at once, and even if you are at the heart of a protest, in the backroom of a political dealing, or on the carrier ship as the bombers launch, presence often clouds as much as it reveals. But our only alternative is to have the world we are in coalesced and presented towards us, mediated and curated by one industrial force or another. Text books, documentaries, the nightly news, and of course… the dreaded political panel podcast.

This week on the Road to PALISADE: Serious Reading

Records Recovered from the Divine, Arbitrage


The Bilateral Intercession: This faction, made up primarily from Stel Nideo and Kesh assets, was formerly known as the Curtain. The rebranding comes as part of a “civil coup” performed by Cynosure Whitestar-Kesh. In a move that surprised no group more than the Curtain themselves, Cynosure spent years growing in confidence and power, until that intelligence organization could be once again reduced to a tool. Still defined by their traditionalism, they wield their control on culture, religion, and history as a weapon—and the extensive spy network for which they are named when those come up short.

The Pact of Free States: While the Bilateral Intercession’s name change reflects a shift in leadership and posture for the Curtain, the shift from “The Pact of Necessary Venture” to “The Pact of Free States” is simply the public acceptance of what was already widely understood to be true. Led in name by Dahlia, the Glorious Princept, and in day-to-day operation by senior members of Stels Apostolos and Columnar, the Pact paint themselves as liberal reformists whose aim is to increase the degree of autonomy in each of the Stels, such that they become in reality five separate nations.


Continental Countinghouse (he/him): CENTRE/line host who specializes in playful monologues, managing social equilibrium, and ad reads.

Pregoria Prilt (she/her): CENTRE/line panel member from Stel Columnar with a great interest in eating utensils and ancient Earth.

Reatta Fossick (they/them): CENTER/Line panel member from Stel Kesh whose expertise in economic matters is only eclipsed by their deftness with euphemisms. 

Galaebalus Splu-u-mp (Gal/Gals, they them): CENTRE/line panel from Stel Apostolos member with strong feelings about work ethic, lunch sandwiches, and freedom.


10th Coronet: A metropolitan space station—shaped like a crown, orbiting a dying sun—deep in the heart of Stel Orion, home to the galaxy's largest stock market, the stel’s governing body, and its media industry. 

TSYU: A university with one of the galaxy’s most prestigious medical schools, whose director, Jellicle (she/her), has little experience in any field except advertising.. Formerly called “TCYU,” prior to a recent acquisition and branding change. 


Orion Trade Concordance: A treaty signed by all five Stels, allowing for the safe and free movement of Stel Orion ships doing business anywhere in the Principality. On paper, this allows old trade lanes to remain active and for shipping of necessary goods to go uninterrupted by the ever-spreading civil war. In practice, it gives Stel Orion a tighter-than-ever hold on galactic commerce, and provides cover for a great deal of illegal activity. It was well negotiated, don’t you think?

Hosted by Austin Walker (@austin_walker

Featuring Keith J Carberry (@keithjcarberry), Jack de Quidt (@notquitereal), and Art Martinez-Tebbel (@atebbel)

Produced by Ali Acampora (@ali_west) and Austin Walker

Music by Jack de Quidt (available on bandcamp)

Text by Austin Walker

Cover Art by Craig Sheldon (@shoddyrobot)

You can purchase Serious Reading at