Austenasia becomes Dictatorship

Crown Prince Jonathan of Austenasia has usurped the nation’s government and proclaimed the Hitlerist-Stalinist State of Greater Austenasia, proclaiming he intends to commit a genocide on people with freckles.

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St.Charlie Decision 2012 drawing to a close

St. Charlie Decision 2012 Logo

Today, December 30, 2011, being the last day of elections in St.Charlie, we at the Pristinian Herald wanted to share our insight into what has been happening in the Federal Republic, a nation that has undeniably become one of the most significant members of our community. But this year they’ve seen a dramatic decline in influence. And here’s why (excuse that little joke).

Now don’t get me wrong. During my brief period in St.Charlie around this time last year, I had the pleasure of working with Mr. Alvisi, then Minister for Justice, myself. He’s not a bad person, a bad politician, or even a bad Minister for Justice. But Mr. Alvisi has what I call “Thatcher syndrome”. He wasn’t a half bad minister – Thatcher wasn’t a half bad Minister for Education either – but as Prime Minister he, just like Thatcher, seemed a bit misguided in the way he handled his new-found responsibilities. If you don’t get what I mean, have a look at what Mr. Alvisi accomplished as Minister for Justice. He got the entire Criminal Code written, which isn’t a minor achievement in a nation as large and diverse as St.Charlie, where I’m sure he had to put a lot of consideration into every single article.

And of course, the same way we can’t say that Mr. Alvisi was just bad across the line, we can’t denounce the SCSP that way either.  The SCSP was a brilliant minority party. They provided input, ideas and innovation to the NPSC while it was in government, and often helped improve on St.Charlie by offering alternative perspectives on many things, perspectives which just would not have been there without another party to contest the NPSC’s rule. But that’s where the SCSP’s merit ends. It was a good opposition party, and for that we must applaud it. But in government, it did terribly. No matter how blinded by ideology you are, you cannot deny or even as much as euphemise the fact that the SCSP accomplished next to absolutely nothing this past year.

If we compare how much St.Charlie achieved and accomplished in 2009 and 2010, the failure of the socialist government becomes even more apparent. The sad thing is, it’s not because of their political, social or economic views – that would be acceptable. No, it’s just because they were too preoccupied with other things to govern St.Charlie efficiently. And I know that this year, 2010, has been a year of less activity for many of the St.Charlian political elite as they wander off to University, and as a consequence see each other less and less and don’t have as much time to spend with St.Charlie anymore. So it’s a fair point that the NPSC might, given the circumstances, not have done as well as in previous years either. We can’t know. But that’s not the point.

The point St.Charlians must examine, and are examining, is that no matter how you twist and turn it, the SCSP government has done nothing to change, or, better, to further St.Charlie, so that it, in short, has failed. We can speculate over whether the NPSC would have done any better until our brains are fried, but it’s pointless. What St.Charlie needs to realise is that, regardless of whether the NPSC will do better or not, the SCSP is not doing any good, so voting NPSC is at least worth a shot to rescue St.Charlie from the apparent complete lack of activity. Luckily, the opinion polls are currently in favor of Reinhardt and the NPSC, with almost 71% of the vote.

In summary, I think I speak not only for all of us at the Herald, but in fact for all Pristinians, when I say that I honestly hope the NPSC will win these elections. If not, I doubt St.Charlie will in fact be able to exist much longer.

St.Charlie Decision 2012 Logo is copyrighted by the St.Charlian Government; Some rights reserved.

Francisville Constitution Underway

News from Francisville has reached the Herald, with some information regarding the new Federal Republic of Francisville. As a citizen has been able to confirm, the new Constitution is currently in the final stages of being written, and it is expected to be ratified by the end of January 2012 at the very latest. What little we have seen of the Constitution so far, reveals that, as expected, Francisville will be adopting many of the successful elements of the government and politics of the Swiss Confederation. Both the term “Canton” for the uppermost federal subdivision of the Republic, and the integral concept of Direct Democracy, have been inspired by Switzerland.

One of the many curiosities of the constitution also include the section on the citizens’ civil, political and human rights, which is rumoured to be the longest section of the entire Constitution. But perhaps the most striking oddity of the document is the lack of a single head of state. Instead, the executive is formed by a Council, which was, again, inspired by Switzerland and has been done in order to avoid a single central political authority in whom the majority of political power is vested, as it is present in many other micronations. This will, as the Francillian people hope, vanquish the possibility for inactivity or inability to function being caused by the absence of a single person.

We will have more on this as more information becomes available.

Government releases information regarding constitution and elections

The Interim Government of the Free Pristinian Republic, led by Provisional President of the Republic, Dr. Sebastian A. Linden, has publicised an outline regarding the development of the Constitution and a possible election date:

We have decided that the Constitution will act not only as the document outlining the government structure and rights of the citizens, but will also delineate crimes against the state and binding regulations on our culture, language and identity. The last section, which is anticipated to contain regulations pertaining to amending the Constitution, will likely define itself and some other sections and articles of the Constitution as unamendable, in order to better safeguard the rights of the people.

With regards to elections, these will depend on the ratification of the Constitution which will take place via a 7-day referendum on the subject, in which people will be able to vote in support or opposition of the document. We expect there to be no major opposition, in which case 14 days after the ratification, parliamentary and presidential elections will be held. If there does turn out to be more disapproval than approval of the Constitution, those who opposed it in the referendum will be asked to make the changes they wish to see. Failure to do so will result in their exclusion from the consequent referendum on the new Constitution. The interim government will then attempt to incorporate those suggestions and the resulting, new Constitution will be submitted for another referendum. This is repeated until there is a majority of support, when elections will then be held as described above.

Regarding the actual content of the Constitution per se, the design we have in mind will introduce a system of checks and balances that will prevent any President from tyrannically dictating the Pristinian people, while still formally and firmly entrenching the President as the main and most powerful instrument of governing power. For instance, the President will be the Speaker of the Assembly of the Republic, meaning he will not have a vote. However, he is also able to legislate without Assembly consent, while the Assembly may retract confidence in him. And while the President may also retract his confidence into the Assembly, he may not do so during a vote of no confidence in him, and he must call new parliamentary elections immediately. Also, in the period between dissolution and elections, he may not legislate. This, combined with the people’s ability to legislate directly democratically via referenda, is designed to ensure the implementation of democracy in Pristinia.

According to a poll carried out by the Sutherland University’s statistical institute, which sampled a third of Pristinia’s total population, there is no opposition to the Constitution as information stands now. Even Humphrey Brockman, the former Lord Brockman, leader of the National Conservative Party and main opponent of the democratisation, has stated that he and his party shall not obstruct the Constitution. In fact, he has gone as far as stating that “[they] will accept anything His [former] Majesty will throw at [them]”. The Herald will be continuing to watch this story as it develops, providing any further information we get from the interim government.

There’s a Difference

…between news, opinion, and analysis (aside from some journalistic articles which don’t really fit into any of these, like interviews and such). For some reason, the vast majority of micronationalists are either too damn lazy, too damn stupid or too damn both to realise this. There’s countless micronational newspapers which either confuse these or mash them up into some ridiculous mess. The problem with confusing stuff is that it ends up pimp-slapping the newsfeed’s seriousness and NEWS identity into Oblivion. So here’s a few pointers to help you distinguish:

  • News: An unbiased report of an event or other unusual matter that has occurred, is ongoing, or will in the forseeable future occur. Unbiased as in: No opinion, just what actually happened/is happening/will happen; and unconfirmed information or speculation is clearly explained to be speculative as opposed to factual. The 5W+H+R (who, what, why, where, when, how, results) are answered. Opinions of several people on the subject may be quoted, but the opinions should be balanced and no one opinion should be favoured. If any, arguments of both sides should be heard.
  • Opinion: A statement, justification and explanation of one or more views held by the authors of the article. So, where a news article might be titled “Gun Laws Passed”, an opinion article might be titled “New Laws Bordering on Insanity”.  Assumptions can be made without having to clearly distinguish them, as the article is not expected to be factually sound. These are by their very nature biased.
  • Analysis: Another unbiased form of article, this goes into the why, with what outcome, how and with what context questions, rather than the 5W+H+R questions the News article goes into. It could be a review of how something improved after a reform, an elaboration of what a reform is expected to do, in what way a certain law is significant considering a nation’s history etc. It is more in depth and for people already familiar with the subject. Less definition and dumbing-down than the News article are also a feature of this type of article.

So, let’s recapitulate the newsfeed. The MicroWiki newsfeed is a NEWSfeed, not an opinionfeed or analysisfeed. It is for laws being passed, diplomatic relations being suspended or formed, celebrations being held, events occurring and the like. The following is what it is not for:

– Opinion. (Most TZT articles, for example)
– Analysis. (part of almost every micronational newspaper)
– Entertainment. (MicroHigh et al)

Now, I know there are going to be those of you crying “But they’re important, and people enjoy them”. Well, the truth is, if people care about your opinion, they will visit your blog regularly. If people like your entertainment shows, they will subscribe to your YT channel. Those who don’t want to see it on their YouTube frontpage, or those who can’t be asked to navigate to your blog, probably also don’t want to be pestered on the MW newsfeed. It’s just common sense.

We have a variety of weird rules, like no weather statuses (which I on the other hand find useless, silly rule, but okay). I’m going to make sure the next few days that there is only reportings of actual news – events, laws, projects and such. Any “he sucks” rants, any entertainment articles or broadcasts, and yes, also all of that “self-awareness” bullshit will be removed from the feed in the future, because I, and a lot of others, are sick of the fact that the majority of stuff on the NEWSfeed isn’t actually news.

Thank you for your attention.