Chapter 2: Bolivians and Politicians
The 'liberation' of Uruguay reunited me with 50,000 of my national pops, but in the eyes of the international community was an act of agression earning me 20BB points. Since I have no wish (nor ability) to fight off a British intervention in South America I shall have to restrict myself to legitimate casus-bellis for the next couple of years. Luckily Argentina has just such a war available against Bolivia with Argentine cores to be reclaimed in the states of Juluy and Alto Paraguay.
Nine weeks after the surrender of Uruguay the Argentine army is in position on the border of Bolivia, ready to strike (I really need to get some railways, Argentina is far too big to have to walk everywhere). War is declared on the 27th of August as Argentine infantry and cavalry move to liberate Argentina's cores. Bartolomé Tajes, with nine thousand infantry under his command, is sent to hunt down the Bolivian army which, presumably due to budget issues, has been reduced to a single division.
While he may be no military genius Tajes gets the job done, destroying first the standing Bolivian army and then two divisions that mobilise. With these battles done, the war is all but over and all that remains is to occupy enough of Bolivia to bring them to the negotiating table.
As January 1st rolls around, a slightly odd consequence of Argentina's political setup emerges. Argentina's Upper House operates under the Two per State system but because no voting of any form is allowed, each state duly returns two reactionary party members and my entire Upper House becomes reactionary.
The reactionaries will never agree to any reforms, so in order to advance I must first go back a step, repealing the Two per State rule in favour of an Appointed Upper House. At least my aristocrats are merely conservative, and might possibly be convinced to support reforms.
The war with Bolivia continues on, with the Bolivians proving remarkably unwilling to surrender for a people with no army. When the capital Chuquisaca falls they quickly change their tune however, and a peace treaty is signed. With 19+ BB points this peace treaty will mark the beginning of a prolonged period of peace for Argentina, Brazilian aggression and free Casus-Bellis notwithstanding. My ideal next target is Paraguay whose capital, Asuncion, is home to 100,000 people, many of them Platineans. As a two state country Paraguay would take two wars and a lot of BB to annex, however maybe I will get lucky and Brazil will claim their northern state (Brazil has cores there) leaving me with just one state to annex. That is still 20 BB though, so whatever happens Paraguay is safe from me for now.
At this point I also switch my single National Focus from promoting bureaucrats in Buenos Aires to promoting clergy. Even with my new 100% administrative efficiency I only get 1 clergy per month however. Hopefully as my economy gains strength I will see a larger number begin to promote.
Freedom of Trade is researched in September 1837, increasing RGO outputs across the nation by 50% (they were already at 116% however, so the total increase is more like 43% of what was already produced). Unfortunately a 43% increase of not very much is still not very much, and while it does help, my economy is still not in the shape I would like it to be in. Further research points are accumulated to research Idealism once it becomes available in 1840.
January 1st comes around again, and my Upper House is rearranged according to the ideologies of my aristocrats and capitalists (all 35 of them). Now I just have to make it so the these pops are majority liberal. Should be easy right?