As we began the new year of 1950, the first step was to take stock of the island. Obviously, as I was elected as a Socialist, my fellow citizens were most eager to take a bold step forward. We had three farms, as the rest died out when the war ended in 1945. We had some unexploited minerals, mostly in the form of a sizable iron deposit towards the north end of the island. I decided that since I was heartily sick and tired of growing corn, corn and more corn for the thirty or so years of my life I had lived on this island, that since Papaya was reported to grow well at the bases of hills, to convert the northern farm to a Papaya grove.
I decided that since farming was my best skill, that we should grow coffee. But where to put all the coffee farms? That would have to wait. Meantime, the Communists were very concerned about equal wages, and I decided they had a point. All the farmers were given a raise to 6 pesos a month, while my palace guards (and indeed anyone with a high school education) were given 9 a month. Should anybody on our island be so fortunate as to have had college (!) they would get the most princely sum of 12 pesos a month!
The Communists were also very eager to tell me I ought to promote relations with Russia, as I could cut the cost of building better housing. Since I had lived in either the farmhouse or a shack all my life, I agreed. I ordered that a Foreign Ministry be built, which would carefully ensure we remained neutral to both countries. I did not, as you may expect, fully trust the Communists when they claimed the Soviet Union had only our island's best interests. If that was so, where were they when we could have used a better Presidente than old Ramos who treated us like amusing pets?
Also, as I wished to ensure I had sufficient construction workers, I ordered that another construction office be built.
We got some foreign aid from both the US and USA as I had my capable assistants look over the ledgers, and with those funds I immediately asked our Foreign Ministry to pay the Russians two thousand pesos for their special blueprints in order to subsidize apartments and tenements. I also ordered an immigration office to be built. Aside from that, little was done in 1951.
In 1952, I was pleased to see that we exported more corn, and a tenement was constructed and completed. To hear my fellow farmers and workers cheer, you would have thought I was their Saviour!
In 1953, the Capitalists informed me of a use for a bank. Now, banks are, I admit, still a mystery to me somewhat as we never had more than a few pesos to live on most of my life, but they said the marvel of these banks was that with the already very low price of housing, I could cause it to be even lower! Of course, it cost eight thousand pesos to build a bank! It very nearly bankrupted our struggling island. However, the good news came over the radio that the United States desired iron for another war of theirs, and they announced a 10% increase in the price they would pay! An excellent bit of luck for my plans for that iron mine.
Unfortunately, not all was well in 1954, as my soldier left the palace! Also, nobody would staff my immigration office! Grudgingly, I ordered the payment of 500 pesos to hire one from overseas. However, the good news was that we had enough money in the island's treasury to safely order the construction of the iron mine and an extra Teamster's office to go with it. I'd certainly seen enough of those men moving corn to the dock to know their importance. It would be a nice change for them to start hauling iron!
By 1955, the iron mine was complete, and we had it operating in no tme. Also, we began exporting papaya for the first time, and I began getting the smell of coffee in my nostrils. The bank was finished, and a banker moved in and began dispensing his advice to everyone to begin saving their money.
1956 - a banner year! My fellow citizens (and immigrants) demanded that I call an election, so as to decide for themselves if my decisions were good or bad. Happily, I obliged, knowing that at least I enjoyed living in the Presidente's mansion for six years. Unfortunately, although the second Teamster office opened and began helping the miners move the iron, the strongly religious members of the island began demanding a church. Old Presidente Ramos had never cared much for churches, but it seems his death has wrought more changes than we thought!
The challenger against me was Susana Fuentes, one of the Capitalists. It seems that their faction was not happy about the lack of immediate industry. Honestly! A man has to crawl before he can walk, and our island has to grow more than enough food and mine enough iron before we can be confident about manufacturing and industry.
Luckily, the church was swiftly constructed, and I hired a priest. I also transferred some staff to ensure both the Immigration office and the Foreign Ministry were effective.
I won the election in 1957, 34-11. I also ordered a second tenement built.