The Citizens’ Party of Sandus held its X Party Congress on Saturday 7 November, a date seen as auspicious because of its coinciding with the National Day of Socialism. The congress lasted two hours, covered five key agenda points, formed two working committees, and reëlected Party Secretary Adam Camillus von Friedeck for a seventh term as secretary of the Party. 66% of Party members were in attendance at the congress that was held online over a voice call.
The congress began at 16:07 UTC with the traditional Party anthem, the Internationale. von Friedeck gave his opening remarks at 16:11 UTC followed quickly by the election for the Party Secretary where he was reëlected by acclamation.
The Party Congress first addressed agreements for the Common Economy, an economic union currently comprising Sandus and Überstadt, and how to reïnvigorate Sandum coöperatives and enterprises.
For the first time, the Party distinguished between state enterprises (entities in Sandus that perform a public service and produce an intangible product, such as culture or knowledge) and coöperatives (worker’s democratic communities that produce tangible products). The distinction will not be so clear-cut, however, since the two will allow for pragmatic ad hoc decisions to be made regarding the constitution of the Sandum economy. For example, some state enterprises, like the Collegium Sacerdotum, may produce tangible products and have a basic worker’s democracy but will be considered a state enterprise since their primary product and purpose is intangible and a public service.
The Party Secretary will publish an article in Voice of Sandus on the implications for this and other decisions, including on worker’s democracy in coöperatives as they will exist in the future.
The Party also redefined labour in Sandus by distinguishing between intentional and “unintentional” labour. Now all labour done by Sandum citizens is Sandum labour, a change from the Central People’s Government’s previous point of view that defined Sandum labour as exclusively labour intended for Sandus. Party members suggested ways to encourage people to do intentional labour for Sandus, such as letting coöperatives and the Party model ways to do intentional labour through lists, brochures, and a newsletter that the Party will write as well as a list of resources and people with experience. In this new labour system, the Party will facilitate labour and suggest resources for workers, while also encouraging themes and plans for Sandum labour.
After discussing the Sandum economy, the Party Congress discussed the Party’s administration and, in particular, the Party constitution, the Central Committee, recruitment, and discipline and activity. The Party reäffirmed its commitment to the constitution that the Central Committee ought to be the Party’s bureaucracy that performs the Party’s regular work. To this end, members argued that terms or appointments should be made to the Central Committee to reflect members’ activity and intentional commitment to Sandus. In terms of recruitment, members suggested that the advantages of being a Party member should be more clearly expressed, while Sandus’s now regular Comrades’ Klatsches should discuss the role of the Party in Sandus and hold a meeting on the Party’s platform. With discipline and activity, the Party will begin to pilot a program to spur discipline among members and to encourage accountability. In the future, members will have quotas for intentional labour they do on behalf of the country, while there will be ramifications for inactive members leading up to their eventual removal from the Party. The Party will also consider how best to ensure members do not hold opinions that are insincere and detrimental for the State and Party, while respecting members’ personal freedoms. On this point, the Party Secretary emphasised that the Party does not adhere to democratic centralism.
In response to this rich discussion, the Party Congress decided to send to committee the issue of redrafting the CPS Party Constitution by the 2021 Spring Equinox and the Party Platform by the next Party Congress in November 2021.
Lastly, the Party considered its role in Sandus’s diplomatic affairs. The Sôgmô noted that all Sandum diplomats and the Minister of Diplomatic Affairs are Party members, allowing the Party to have no small role in determining Sandum diplomatic policy. The Party Congress determined that the Party will play an even larger role in recommending policies in Sandum diplomatic affairs, and the congress decided to form a second committee to propose agenda items for the Borean Community before its first meeting on 21 November. Members suggested North American indigenous rights, environmentalism, and food waste and security.
In concluding the congress, the Sôgmô and Minister Artemis Baca announced new directions that the State of Sandus will begin to take. Það announced that from 20 February 2021 (the Day of Secession) to 13 February 2022 (the tenth anniversary of “The Fire of the Central Hearth”) will be the Year of Realism. Það will release a new edited compendium of Realist treatises and the Party will take a proactive role in organising ceremonies and commemorating the tenth anniversary of Sandum Realism.
Minister Baca announced a new Sandum diplomatic policy called the « Good Neighbour, Good Works » policy. The policy makes clear that Sandus will take a more active approach to international relations while preserving its isolationism. The change means that Sandus will begin to be more active in the intermicronational community and also that Sandus will defend and coöperate with its close allies in the OMF and the Borean Community.
The congress concluded several minutes ahead of schedule despite its packed agenda and many results, well in time for the CPS Party Conference.