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Trackers

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Trackers are the soldier-citizens of the Amtrak Federation. Within the Federation, there are no true civilians. Everyone has to fulfil a role in a society run like a regimented army. Every Tracker is assigned a serial number and identity card from birth, and requires these to operate within society.

Trackers are all the children of the current or previous President-General via a vast and regulated system of invitro fertilisation (hence the PG's title of 'Father of All Life'). Virtually all male Trackers are sterile, with the apparent exception of the First Family and the odd fluke exception in the general populace. Whilst most females are also sterile, there are more exceptions in the general populace. The Family supports the notion of family, but has suppressed the notion of 'love', deeming it as weakening to morale. Trackers are raised in family units by their guardians, their guard-mother and guard-father. Fertile women are quickly identified and assigned a partner to help them raise their children in a regulated process.

There is no 'retirement' within the Federation. Most Trackers die before their 45th birthdays. Those on combat operations above ground rarely last much past their 30th birthday, either due to enemy action or to the vastly increased dosages of radiation they receive on the surface. Again, the exceptions are the members of the First Family, some of whom are known to have lived almost twice as long as other Trackers.

The notion of personal wealth has been discarded: Trackers have credits which they can use to requisition new resources, but are limited in what they can spend these on. Better and larger quarters and superior living conditions can only be gained through achievements and loyal service to the First Family. The Family indoctrinate Trackers from birth to believe in 'the system' and the notion of self-sacrifice and being a team-player. Each Tracker can make a difference, but is also only a single cog in a vast and complex machine, and all the parts must work together so the Federation can achieve its goals.

In practice, the situation is somewhat different. The human tendencies for passing the buck, laziness and cutting corners, not to mention the nascent human desire for personal freedom and for choice have only been suppressed, not eliminated, and there are plenty of dissatisfied people within the system. Some escape to the overground to become breakers and renegades, others are discovered and busted down to working in the A-levels for life, or are killed as malcontents. These remain in the minority, however.

The ability of the Trackers to be controlled in such a manner by the First Family is due to the somewhat small size of the Federation population and their place in an underground civilisation besieged by radiation levels outside. It is possible that the Federation's relatively slow pace of expansion may be partially out of a desire to keep the people under control for as long as possible, as once the settlement of the surface gets underway in earnest, such control will become much more difficult to enforce.

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