The Sôgmô’s medals at MicroCon 2019, for MEDALS

The Honourable Sôgmô wore more than a dozen decorations at MicroCon 2019’s opening reception, including Sandum and foreign medals. This description is for the Microphaleristics EDucational Archive and Library of Slabovia (MEDALS).

Lapel pin: the Sandum bicolour

On Sinister (right in the picture), top to bottom:

    The Sôgmô’s Eagle (gift from Alexander Reinhardt, St.Charlie)
    Sandum 10th Anniversary Medal (designed by Dominic Desaintes, Saint-Castin)
    100th Anniversary of the October Revolution Medal (CPRF)
    Organisation de la MicroFrancophonie Medal (designed by Dominic Desaintes, Saint-Castin)
    Member of the Order of the Double Samara (Saint-Castin)
    Distinguished Micronational Service Award (House of Homestead)
    Desert Palm Medal (Molossia)
    Knight Commander of the Order of the Snowflake (Westarctica)
    MicroCon 2019 Medal (Slabovia)
    King’s Mark of Friendship (Slabovia)

On Dexter (left in the picture):

  1. Chevalier in the Grand Princely Order of the Pink Flamingo (Aigues-Mortes)

Around neck (left to right):

  1. Neck Medal of the Sovereign of the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus
  2. Neck Medal, Honours Thesis in the History Department at the University of Maryland

Academic Honour Cords:

  1. Phi Beta Kappa (oldest American academic honours fraternity)
  2. Eta Sigma Phi (Classics honours fraternity)
  3. Phi Alpha Theta (History honours fraternity)
  4. College Park Scholars program in Public Leadership cord

Weekly Meeting: 15 July 2019

All three Grand State Officers were in attendance.

The Party Secretary began with preparations for MicroCon 2019. He specified that he and the Sôgmô should extend outreach to fraternal peoples throughout the micronational world at the convention. This includes solidarity-building, cooperation, and mutual political causes. Then, he and the Sôgmô focused on discussing the proposal for a community associated with the Social System that will encourage solidarity and cooperation on key policy interests. Both then planned an agenda of meetings and common decision-making events.

The Facilitator followed by mentioning preliminary stages of proposal for key “Sandum Economic Principles,” including a basic monetary and economic policy for Sandus. Key issues revolved around how to value the persuma, the status of CivBanca as Sandus’s state bank, and CivBanca‘s role in the Commission for the Command Economy. She also mentioned ideas for revenue, including bonds, voluntary taxes, and the sale of state surplus.

Finally, the Sôgmô briefly mentioned two proposals: one for solidarity citizenship, a new citizenship status sine suffragio, and another for a basic litigation system in Sandus, divided into arbitration and formulary or actio legis systems.

The next meeting will take place on 29 E July 2019.

Weekly Meeting: 9 July 2019

All three Grand State Officers were in attendance.

The Party Secretary began. He mentioned the need to restart the Commission for the Command Economy, and it was decided both to schedule a meeting in the coming month and also to issue a directive regarding the Commission’s membership. The need for a catalogue or registry of workers’ skills was also added to the docket, and a system for citizens to request items. Finally, the State of Sandus needs a monetary and fiscal policy, which will be discussed by the CCE in the future.

Next, the Facilitator mentioned the need to update certain pages on the portal, since some pages are outdated. The Sôgmô will also recreate a citizenship application form.

Finally, the Sôgmô discussed ongoing negotiation between Sandus, Überstadt, and Saint-Castin regarding the Social System and a potential new associated community. The idea for an associate membership in the Social System and an associated non-citizenship-sharing community was floated. Ideas for the community include a rotating presidency, committees on key points of interest and cooperation, and scheduled meetings. The need for a Social System secretary and commission was also mentioned, and also a potential memorandum of understanding on the ability of Sandus to enter into bilateral social agreements outside the Social System. Finally, það mentioned both proposals for solidarity citizenship, a proposed new citizenship status in Sandus, and the need for a Sandum litigation system.

The next meeting will take place on Monday 15 G July 2019.

Three State Officers begin scheduled weekly meetings

The three Grand State Officers—the Sôgmô, the Party Secretary, and the Facilitator of the Council—have begun to hold weekly meetings over the phone to discuss major State business, in addition to the long-established State Officers’ chatroom. At the meetings, major Sandum policies are discussed, counsel is given to the Sôgmô, and questions are posed to all three officials. The new meetings will have their agendas and their minutes posted in order to provide transparency in the Central People’s Government’s policies, but details may be kept to the minimum in favour of state security.

The weekly agendas and minutes will be posted on Veritum Sandus under the “policy projection” category.

New Art & Design journal, movement announced by SMC

The State Media Cooperative has announced the formation of a new art and design magazine, prole•nounce, and an associated art movement in Sandus, called sandhaus realism after the legendary German art movement Bauhaus.

The magazine’s first header

The magazine began its formation in late April after talks between the three officers of the State of Sandus, and the artistic movement quickly followed. The magazine’s name is a portmanteau of proletarian and pronounce, based off of the Latin word pronuntiare which means to both proclaim, recite, and to share knowledge.

In the artistic movement’s manifesto, a few points stand out:

  1. Sandhaus Realism inherits Bauhaus’s effort to maximise utility and to combine art and everyday life.
  2. It rejects the extreme cost of today’s Bauhaus and instead encourages everyday people to redesign serially manufactured things in their daily lives.
  3. It rejects Bauhaus’s mission to rupture the present from the past; instead, Sandhaus Realism recognises that this effort is futile. Recognising that one’s past never abandons us, the movement instead tries to integrate traditional forms of expression into a spirit for a new time.

The magazine will be released in timely issues, and it already has a few articles. Its first issue contains articles based on the conference of the 10th anniversary of the State of Sandus, including the Sôgmô’s, the Party Secretary’s, and a private citizen’s three papers presented at the celebration’s conference. A final article is on the recent LGBTQ+ Pride Week’s poster which was inspired by the artistic movement’s principles.

Anyone who is a worker in the State Media Cooperative may take part in the new magazine. Everything is run by worker’s democracy and consensus. There is no hierarchy in the new media project.

[SC] Sôgmô: a complicated title

I knew this would happen. More specifically, I knew that I would have to have this conversation.

More than a month ago, around the time Sandus was preparing to celebrate its tenth anniversary, a work colleague (that is, at the university where I work) said to me that some of my other colleagues had been talking about me and my micronation. That is completely normal: it is not uncommon in my life to hear that someone discovered my micronation, was either intrigued or bemused, and had talked to someone else (someone closer to me?) to discuss it. But this was different. They “talked” about it. Behind my back, and in an accusatory way.

These colleagues were talking about my title—sôgmô.

The word comes from the Western Abenaki language, an Algonquin language in the Atlantic Northeast used by an indigenous people from modern-day Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, and Québec. It has a handful of native speakers these days, but it has seen a resurgence of interest and somewhat of a revival on both sides of the border. In Canada, the Abenaki people are more established and institutionalised. In May 2008, the Canadian TV network CBC visited one of two Abenaki reservations in the province of Québec and highlighted the nation’s culture, and these reservations are historically part of the “Seven Nations of Canada”—a group of seven indigenous nations who were allied with the French in the 18th century.

A private monument marking the site of Norridgewock, an Abenaki settlement destroyed in 1724 during Father Râles’s War

Meanwhile, south of the border, the United States has no Western Abenaki reservations and no Western Abenaki nation has received federal recognition, though there is a movement to recognise the Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi, also known as the Sokoki band of the Western Abenaki. On 7 May 2012, the US state of Vermont recognised this band but the US Federal government still does not, so the nation’s sovereignty is all but disputed.

Part of this background are many people, but of particular interest to Anglophones are the Bruchac family. This family has a decades-long involvement with something of an Abenaki renaissance in English-speaking North America. The father, Joseph Bruchac, is a custodian of the language and of traditional mythology, while his son Jesse continues to teach Western Abenaki to interested people in Upstate New York and Vermont and also leads a small but dedicated community of those interested in Abenaki language and culture. See them both in action here, or see this community here. Dr. Margaret Bruchac is another custodian of this national culture as an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania, and plays an active role both in museum exhibitions of indigenous Atlantic culture in North America and in Native American studies. Click above for her extensive CV.

But the Western Abenaki are part of a larger culture of peoples in their region and across the continent. First, the Abenaki were historically a member of the Wabanaki Confederacy, also known as the Wôbanakiak (“peoples of the dawnland”), and long rivals of the Haudenosaunee (the Iroquois confederacy). This confederation of five peoples—the [Western] Abenaki, the [Eastern] Abenaki or Penobscot, the Mikmaq, the Passamaquoddy, and the Maliseet—does have some reservations, like the Penobscot reservation in Old Town, Maine, that I visited with my uncle in 2011. But there are, again, no federally-recognised nations of the Western Abenaki.

The Abenaki, too, are part of a larger North American cultural group known as the Algonquians. This group is spread across subarctic northern North America, from the Cheyenne in the Plains to the Ojibwe and Potawatomi in the Great Lakes to the Abenaki in the Northeast and the Powhatan in the Chesapeake region.

Why am I explaining all this? Partially to inform, partially to show that I know what I am talking about. I am not particularly educated in the studies of indigenous peoples, but I am interested and—more importantly—I care. I genuinely care about these people, the Abenaki, and about indigenous peoples generally, and I care that they have their self-determination and sovereignty.

The problem with my title, which I knew I would have to explain, is that it is cultural appropriation. To outsiders of Sandus and, frankly, those who do not know my very well or who do not care enough to talk to me, I am a white man who has appropriated an indigenous term for my micronation.

And they are right. It is cultural appropriation. I am using a term that Abenakis today do not use, on either side of the border, and that is problematic that I am associating myself with their historical culture. But now I would like to change gears and give something of an apology.

Before he emigrated to the United States, my great-grandfather was born in southern Québec in the city of Lac-Mégantic, famous today for a terrible train accident that destroyed much of the city in 2013. But his family was also from Trois-Rivières, on the Saint Lawrence, and across the river from a municipality known as Bécancour. In an enclave of the area is Wôlinak, one of the historic Seven Nations of Canada and an Abenaki reservation. His family has lived in the area since the mid-17th century, and we share a common ancestor with Dominic Desaintes—another micronationalist interested in the history and rights of First Peoples in Canada. I grew up thinking about and being interested in this history. That is why from 2008 to 2012 I travelled repeatedly to the region—from Odanak in Québec to Norridgewock and Lovewell Pond in Maine—to learn more about the Abenaki from whom I thought I was descended.

C. Soergel P. in front of the memorial to Father Sébastian Râles

At the same time as I was travelling, I was becoming more and more of a micronationalist—and, to me, that is an art. That is because, in many ways, micronationalism is an artwork in its entirety. It is a form of expression, and it often goes hand-in-hand with literal art and other artistic and cultural media. Micronations have to think about everything that any other nation-state does and emulate it, all while also (self-reflectively) recognising the artificiality of nation-states. Like many forms of art, micronationalism is critique, and my friend and colleague Adam von Friedeck recently presented a paper at the 10th anniversary conference on how this artwork engages with and responds to historical memory.

In 2011, Sandus formed its current and long-lasting government, the State of Sandus. This would be the last time Sandus would change its constitutions and I had frequently talked with other citizens to see what form of government they wanted. At the time, most Sandum citizens (in a surprising referendum for me) advocated for a monarchy in Sandus, and this lead me to something of an artistic choice: how exactly would I brand Sandus? what artistic form would Sandus take? By this, I of course mean what title would I use as the monarch of my micronation, but the idea was much broader.

I had many options to choose from, of course. Sandus had already previously had two baronies. I could have become a count, to mark a new turn in our historical development, or I could do away with low-level nobility and become either a regnant prince or a king. Or I could do what many micronationalists have done and claim to be an emperor.

But I didn’t want any of that. Not only did I want something unique to set Sandus apart from many other micronations in the world, I also wanted a politically meaningful title. So, I chose the title “sôgmô.”

There are two reasons why. First, look up the word in any Abenaki-English dictionary and the definition will (without a doubt) say “chief.” But another way to translate the term is “king” or “monarch,” as with the name for the first conflict (1675-1676) between the Wampanoag and English settlers. (That war, King Philip’s War, is named after the Christian name of Metacom, son of the famous Wampanoag king Massasoit.) And language is, after all, political, as I recognise with appropriating this title. The problem with translating sôgmô as “chief” is its racialised overtones that minimise how important and significant these leaders were. In a sense, claiming the title sôgmô is similar claiming the title “prince” or “king” in any other language, and (at the time) that was a political statement of reclaiming respectability for the Abenaki.

Not many people are aware of the Abenaki or their history, and this is a travesty shared by all indigenous peoples in North America and around the world. In fact, I doubt that my colleagues who gossiped about me and my micronation knew anything about the Abenaki before they looked up the title. Therein lies the second reason for why I chose this title. Not only did I want to highlight an often forgotten people, I also wanted to highlight the importance of indigenous peoples’ sovereignty and self-determination, especially in the United States. In other words, in 2011 I wanted to highlight the lives of indigenous peoples, the injustices done and still committed against them, and their humanity and dignity.

One of the bedrock principles of all micronationalism, after all, is that everyone has the human right to self-determination, the highest action of a people’s sovereignty.

But in the United States, this sovereignty is imperfect. Not only are certain nations kept from exercising this sovereignty or having this sovereignty recognised (in the case of the Missisquoi), but the legal category of Native American sovereignty is hardly sovereign at all but, more accurately, suzerain. After all, Native American nations’ governments in the United States only have jurisdiction over their citizens within their territory (reservations), but not over all people in their territory. In other words, a white police officer working for a Native American nation can arrest tribal members (or, as they really should be called, citizens) but they cannot themself be arrested by a Native American nation’s police force. This is imperfect sovereignty.

The artistic purpose why I chose the title “sôgmô,” then, has to do with all of the above. Yes, I recognise that insofar as Abenaki culture exists in the United States—it is after all an object of continued cultural genocide and of wrongs that are only recently being righted on both sides of the border—I am appropriating Abenaki culture. But in doing that, I am not profiting from Abenaki people’s culture but I am highlighting their culture, their history, the commonalities we share thanks to our common humanity, and the continued injustices committed by governments across the Americas against indigenous peoples. While I do not have the lived experiences or histories of indigenous peoples alive today, in this small degree I am an ally—and I will continue to advocate for the sovereignty and self-determination of indigenous peoples around the world.

And I challenge those colleagues and all others like them to do the same.

The discourse on cultural appropriation was not where it is today in 2011, and even today there are people who are absolutists about cultural appropriation. That is, cultural appropriation is bad always absolutely, forever and ever. On the other hand, since cultural appropriation happens all the time and has happened all the time in unconscious and unexamined ways, I prefer to call out cultural appropriation that is (1) mis- or uninformed and (2) exploitative of the appropriated culture.

And my exploitation of the Abenaki? I am not sure. Perhaps some could raise the point that I am deriving prestige from the title, and that is exploitative, but it also goes the other way—that I am both drawing someone’s ire from the political left or (especially in today’s age) someone’s ignorant and racist hatred from the political right. I do not profit from the use of the title (nor does Sandus really “profit” in the capitalist meaning of the word…). In fact, I probably lose much more money and credibility for using it, and that in my opinion is a bigger problem than appropriating the title.

I understand this apology may not be completely satisfactory for some, maybe even for many. But that is too bad. We in Sandus have used this title for more than eight years now, and I think for good reason. It is a form of my artistic expression and it is part of Sandus’s popular sovereignty and self-determination.

And, after all, the state’s not for turning. We’re going to keep on doing what we’re doing.

Summer Solstice Report: Cultural Activities Up, New Initiatives

This Spring was a momentous occasion for the State of Sandus. Not only did we celebrate for the first time the Veneralia, but we even marked important events in the history of our micronation like the eighth anniversary of the Foundation of the State of Sandus, the Royal Couple’s first anniversary, and Labour Day. But we even marked the remarkable event of our tenth anniversary in our capital, surrounded by friends and family, with much excitement and joy!

Spring 2019, with all its hard work in our private and public lives, is over. The days are becoming warmer and will now become shorter, and today we turn again to matters of our State.

In the coming season, we have much work left to do in our valiant efforts to uplift our citizens and the world and to alleviate suffering. In Summer 2019, we will have the immense pleasure of sharing our vision with the micronations of the world at MicroCon 2019, where we will be joined once more by other fellow citizens, friends, and family. Our business at this year’s meeting will be nonstop; we will certainly tire but will be refreshed by the vigorous activity of our colleagues and comrades.

Below, we have detailed here some new initiatives. They are, alas, not complete, but are only the beginning of more good things to come. These include new initiatives around language learning, cultural events and holidays, communal events like vacations together and a reading group. Not included are many things: an upcoming furtive royal event, a citizen’s wedding, and a new art and design magazine.

In our small nation, which we have built with our minds and our hands, we are the masters of our own creation—the sovereign masters of our lives! Let us live that way.

Sandum Citizens celebrated the Tenth Anniversary of Sandus this season. The Sôgmô is joined in this photo by Party Secretary Adam Camillus von Friedeck, Sandus’s newest citizen Jan DeWitt, and former Facilitator of the Council Hatsu Ryuho.

Charity Taxes: Coming Soon

Well, the Summer Solstice crept up on us! This section will be updated later.

Sandus celebrates 10 Years

Citizens came from across North America to take part in the tenth anniversary celebrations of our micronation on the weekend of 26 May 2019, Sandus’s Day of Creation. Independence Day festivities began on 23 May when Party Secretary Adam Camillus von Friedeck flew in from the Pacific Northwest, and in earnest on 24 May when a group of citizens and Sandum-affiliated people took part in a celebratory dinner at a local Korean barbecue restaurant. A schedule was shared with participants welcoming them to Ann Arbour, Quer, and times were in Sandum Local Time or UTC-5, not ETD or UTC-4. (Sandus does not observe daylight savings.)

See photos of the event here.

On Saturday 25 May, citizens and friends joined for breakfast and took part in a televised conference, “Sandum Micronationalism in the Age of Moral Cowardism.” The theme of the conference centred on the rise of xenophobia and right-wing populism throughout the world in recent years, and Sandus’s stalwart resistance to that force. The Sôgmô presented a paper, “Love It If We Made It: Sandum Micronationalism as Satire and Resistance,” that discussed our micronation as an artistic and cultural expression of political resistance. The Party Secretary then shared his paper, “Activist Micronationalism and Historical Memory,” on how Sandus curates and responds actively to local historical memory. Finally, Sandus’s newest citizen, Jan DeWitt, who became a citizen in time for the anniversary celebrations, shared his paper, “Caesar & Trump: The Paradigm of Tyrannicide and Moral Cowardism.” Finally, all three fielded questions from the audience and highlighted how Sandus and micronationalism generally has a role to play in civic society as a form of free, artistic speech that overturns the essentialism of nation-states. The entire conference had undertones urging Sandum Realism, seeing that Sandus’s goals are not grandiose but rather communitarian and collective.

The Tenth Anniversary Medal, designed by Dominic Desaintes.

Tenth anniversary medals were shared at the conference, in addition to flag pins and postcards produced exclusively for the tenth anniversary.

After the conference, members toured Ann Arbour and visited Zingerman’s Delicatessen, a local famous eatery. This was followed by a tour of Main Street and a trip to the local TeaHaus where citizens enjoyed tea and fine pastries. In the evening, after some free time, citizens reconvened to watch the 1959 movie the Mouse That Roared to add some levity to their day!

The morning of Sandum Independence Day, Sunday 26 May, was spent at the Sôgmô’s Tibetan Buddhist temple in the area. Citizens journeyed there for a morning sadhana service, followed by a short dharma talk and meditation by the resident lama. They heard the story of Marpa Lotsawa (‘the Translator’) who journeyed from Tibet to India in the 11th century to retranslate the Tibetan Buddhist canon, which became known as the “New Translation.” Marpa became one of the lineage founders of the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, a New Translation school. (The Sôgmô is from the Nyingma school, the only Old Translation school.)

Following this, citizens went to Aut Bar, a local LGBTQ+ bar in Ann Arbour, for brunch. Next, they toured the local farmer’s markets and groceries before heading back to the Appartements du Sôgmô to prepare a communal meal shared among themselves and others. During this “Kitchen Agreement” dinner, citizens talked about cultural activities, events, and the importance of sharing food with one another as a sign of friendship, love, and community.

The tenth anniversary activities ended that evening and everyone had a fun time! All citizens who joined in wanted another occasion to meet and to have fellowship with one another again, and even thought of preparing a communal trip sometime in the near future to the Balkans.

Cultural Events, Holidays up Significantly

In the last year, attendance at Sandum cultural events and holidays have been up significantly in the State of Sandus. The Sôgmô has entertained dozens of people at their official residence for a multitude of Sandum holidays, ranging from major State holidays to days of recognition. This emphasis on Sandum cultural events and holidays was called for in the 2017 Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift, a governmental plan that encouraged cultural development and a reduced reliance on administration and bureaucracy.

The holidays that have been celebrated and commemorated in person include the Armilustrium and Remembrance Day, two of the most important Sandum State holidays. But they also include holidays that are newly celebrated with physical events, like the Day of Mourning for the Annexation of Hawai’i that commemorates the illegal American occupation of the Hawai’ian Islands. Recently, the Sôgmô even celebrated the Veneralia, the festival of the goddess Venus held on 1 April. The holiday has been cast as a Sandum response to the increasingly commercialised Saint Valentine’s Day.

The holidays have had the added benefit of communicating Sandum ideals and values to a wider audience of people beyond those who are micronationalists. And the ideas so integrally a part of our micronation have been received and accepted by more people outside of the micronational community, who have come to recognise and reflect on the communitarian and progressive policies we advance in the State of Sandus.

Sandum Reading and Cultural Group announced

A long-anticipated project is finally here. The Sôgmô has announced today the creation of a Sandum reading and cultural group. The group, which will have its own facilitator, will meet on Google Hangouts to discuss books and other cultural media. Its mission is to be ultimately determined by its members, but its drafted mission is to build an integral community of socially-conscious, civic-minded, and justice-oriented citizens through monthly meetings to discuss media from a diverse background.

Each month will have a specific focus and readings should be manageable for all participants, since many citizens are academics who must read and study much already. Some ideas include Sarah Bakewell’s biography of Montaigne, watching documentaries, or reading US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo’s poetry.

The facilitator position will be advertised in the Council and will be selected by a democratic vote in the Council, or by the Sôgmô’s appointment. The position will be annual and will be salaried at 8¶c.

Sôgmô elected OMF Deputy Secretary of Culture and Francophonie Development

The Sôgmô has been elected unanimously to the position of Deputy General-Secretary in Charge of Culture and of Development of the French-Speaking World in the Organisation of the MicroFrancophonie (OMF). In this stead, the Sôgmô will lead the OMF’s cultural policy and initiatives, and það has hit the ground running by announcing that July will be the OMF’s “Month of Micronational French-Speaking Gastronomy.” More such commemorative months will happen over the course of the year, and það will speak with other members at the upcoming 2019 MicroCon to discuss other possible initiatives.

The Sôgmô is one of a handful of French-speakers in the State of Sandus. Though French is one of three official languages, it is spoken by a minority of citizens, and is of equal proportion to those who know Latin in the country. Sandus is also a founding member of the organisation, which was established in May 2016.

Sandum Language Learning Initiative:
Connecting Tutors, Cutting Costs

Language acquisition is important in the State of Sandus, both for political and also social reasons. It is of increasing importance that Sandum citizens learn multiple languages, especially Sandus’s three official languages (English, French, Latin), in a world that is increasingly polarised and globally-connected. Moreover, an internationalist country like Sandus seeks to upset the linguistic hegemony of English as a new koine and lingua franca by encouraging language acquisition. Language learning is not just about connecting people through language and sharing Sandum values: it is also about uplifting Sandum citizens, educating them in new and profound ways, and cultivating their positive social mobility.

In pursuit of these causes, the Sôgmô has announced a new language learning initiative in the State of Sandus, similar to the financial initiative that helps citizen and non-citizen trans people transition. That initiative gives applicants up to $30 to $40 for transition-related materials like chest-binders, clothes, or cosmetics, and it is financed by the Sôgmô personally. To date, close to half a dozen people have taken advantage of the fund.

This new initiative will do something similar by covering up to half of the cost of language-learning textbooks, or up to $50 USD. The new initiative will also help connect citizens to tutors, with preference given to other citizens, who can either teach them a language or help them study. Finally, it will also seek out free tools to encourage language-learning and will seek alternative means to finance language-acquisition, such as encouraging citizens to apply to the Classics microgrant fund Sportula.

As a part of this initiative, the Sôgmô is considering adopting regional languages of unofficial status on the State-level but that are cultural languages relevant to individual provinces. This follows a similar current that has been developing in Sandus lately, to increase provincial cultural identity with symbols and also to breakdown behemoth provinces like Sandus Ulterior, or Further Sandus, into more region-specific provinces, like Kremlum Sandus and Quercus Candida. Provinces, then, will have regionally-relevant cultural languages and languages that are spoken en masse by the region’s population.

Language is an important part of current Sandum policy, too. The Sôgmô has recently begun a project to translate for free other micronations’ mottoes, titles, et cetera into Latin for them. Dismayed by the fake Latin many micronations use to aspire to a higher level of prestige, það begun the project to increase the prestige of micronations in general. To date, about a dozen translations have been made.

Workers receive annual salaries

Sandum workers have received their annual salaries based on their employment in the Central People’s Government and Sandum cooperatives. Receipts will be sent out to them individually from the Sôgmô acting on behalf of CivBanca.

The Sôgmô’s Summer Honours List

Ahead of MicroCon 2019 in Hamilton, Canada, invitations to new members in Sandus’s newest order have been sent out with more on their way, and new commendationes and ovationes will be made for the occasion. And, finally, new members have been made in the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus, Sandus’s most senior order of honour.

Ovationes and Commendationes

Sandus’s newest style of award and honour is the commendatio, or “commendation.” Based off of the Roman epistolary genre, this honour is comprised of Latin letters patent that are recognitions of specific actions and deeds on behalf of Sandus and larger efforts. They can also be joined with ovationes, or “ovations,” which are short Latin speeches that traditionally end with the phrase “plaudamus igitur…” (“let us applaud therefore…”). These honours are similar to the distinction of “mentioned in dispatches” (MiD) found in other countries.

Today, three people have been recognised with commendationes and one with an ovatio.

King George 2.0 of Slabovia for his work with MicroCon 2019
Chancellor Rankin MacGillivray for his work with MicroCon 2019
Party Secretary Adam Camillus von Friedeck cum ovatione for serving the Party for five years

L’Ordre Annonaire Fraternel du Bol en Bois

Work on the Fraternal Annonary Order of the Wooden Bowl, as the order is known in English, has been slow since a standard translation of the order’s founding ordinance took a while to be formally corrected for good, legalese French. The editing work lasted until late in the Spring. The order’s official business language, after all, is French and the original document used a Medieval French document as its model until this idea was scrapped.

But now work is going ahead before this year’s Chökhor Düchen holiday that marks both the Buddha’s first teaching the Dharma and the order’s official business holiday. The chivalric charitable order is meant to be made up of members who have both a creed related to Sandus’s philosophy and who have been initiated into their religion’s teachings.

The order has three members already, two seigneurs and one chevalière bannerette.

Gaius Soergel Publicola, seigneur et souverain
Adam Camillus von Friedeck, seigneur et trésorier
Sisenna Melville, chevalière bannerette

Three others have been invited, and eight more are set to be invited soon.

Chevaliers bannerets

Hatsu Ryuho, former Facilitator of the Council
Dominic Desaintes, President-Minister of Saint-Castin
Olivier, Emperor of Angyalistan


Invitations have not yet been sent out to chevaliers, but they will be in the next few days.

Honourable Order of Athena Pronoea

The second most prestigious order in Sandus based on precedence automatically gives ranks based on educational achievement. It is the only order in which the Sôgmô does not hold the highest rank despite being the order’s sovereign, and today some new members of the order outrank the Sôgmô.


Jacob Barnet Pharmacologus Σαρκαστικός MΑθΠ – Master’s degree of Science in Medicinal Chemistry
Jan DeWitt KΑθΠ – Master’s Degree of Arts in Latin


Oliver Armstrong AΑθΠ – pursuing B.A.

Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus

Each solstice and equinox, the Sôgmô can award membership and new ranks in the Most Honourable Throne of the State of Sandus. Today, það does that with two foreign micronationalists with whom Sandus has become increasingly friendly since 2017, and again with two others—one who has now become a Sandum citizen and his non-citizen-but-affiliated wife.

These four people will now become members of the Most Honourable Throne of Sandus.

Queen Anastasia of Ruritania for her work on MicroCon 2017
King George 2.0 of Slabovia for his friendship and work on MicroCon 2019

Jan DeWitt for his work on constitutional theory and friendship
Natalie Ritsema for her self-sufficient and cultural work and friendship

10 Revolutionaries for Revolutionaries’ Day 2019

Revolutionaries' Day(alpha)Monday 22 April marks the Sandum holiday of Revolutionaries’ Day. This holiday celebrates the revolutionary work of peoples around the world that alleviates the suffering and oppression of others. Celebrated on the birthday of the most famous Russian revolutionary, Sandum people today commemorate important and significant revolutionaries in their lives today, in the world around them, and in history. These more than ten revolutionaries represent important political movements in the world today and which are especially important and pertinent to Sandus.

Happy Revolutionaries’ Day, comrade!

1. Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi

These three black women are the founders of the Black Lives Matter movement that advocates for the racial uplift of black peoples, the end of police brutality, racist incarceration, and resistance against gun violence.

2. Tarana Burke

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Though the actress Alyssa Milano popularised the “Me Too” slogan in response to women coming out about sexual violence perpetrated by Harvey Weinstein, the slogan first came about in 2006 from Tarana Burke.

3. Emma González

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This queer Latinx activist became famous overnight after her tenacity and daring response to the shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida.

4. Alaa Salah

This Sudanese woman and university student recently helped to liberate her country from the thirty-year rule of Omar al-Bashir over the Sudan. Her rousing image recalls the plight of working Sudanese women and she inspired protesters to demand the resignation of the president.

5. Hatari

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This Icelandic anti-capitalist, BDSM, and metal musical group will represent Iceland next month at the Eurovision Song Contest. Their song “Hatrið mun sigra” (“Hatred will prevail”) satirises the rise of populism and fascism in Europe and America.

6. Andrey Nasonov

Andrew Nasonov, gay news, Washington Blade, Russia

In 2013, Russian LGBT activist and artist Andrey Nasonov from Voronezh, Russia, was beaten so badly by ultra-right wing Russian nationalists that he started to seize and convulse. Fearing for his life and facing death threats, he left Russia in 2014 and became an asylum seeker in Washington D.C. where he now lives with his husband.

7. Greta Thunberg

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15 year old Greta Thunberg is a Swedish environmental activist who have found herself on the world’s centre-stage. She has encouraged students and young people to protest and to strike for climate justice with her “School Strike for Climate” movement.

8. Kent Monkman (Miss Chief Eagle Testickle)

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Canadian Two-Spirit Cree activist and artist Kent Monkman reinterprets a variety of different romantic scenes from Greek mythology to the history of “manifest destiny” in North America. Their work focuses on post-colonial modernities that reinterpret and inverse oppressive cultural and historical power structures.

9. Georgie Stone

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Australian trans activist Georgie Stone has at her young age changed Australian law. Thanks to her legal case that allowed her to get puberty blockers, now trans children no longer have to go to Australian family courts to receive court approval for life-saving hormone therapy.

10. John Bachtell

John Bachtell thinks class war politics is not enough to defeat Trump

John Bachtell, Chairman of the Communist Party USA, is gearing up for the party’s 100th birthday. Elected chairman in 2014, he has been a life-long working-class activist and revolutionary, and advocates for the party’s platform in developing socialism from below and changing American politics and culture through the party.

Founding Law signed on this day 8 years ago

On 13 April 2011, the State Caucus of Sandus, the provisional body that oversaw the transition from Sandus as a colony of the Federal Republic of St.Charlie to a fully-fledged sovereign state with a constitution, enacted the Founding Law of the State of Sandus.

This basic and supreme law of the land established in its ten articles and preamble Sandus’s current socialist constitution and laid the basis for the evolutionary transition from monarchy to a republic. The law lays forth Sandum citizens’ common rights, freedoms, and obligations, as well establishes the basis of Sandus’s economic and social policies. In terms of politics, the Founding Law established the principle that the Sôgmô maintains the legal and political supremacy of the State of Sandus. The law even foresaw the development of our tripartite national philosophy comprised of Buddhism, Socialism, and Sancta (a term that has been defined as pluralism and multiculturalism).














Medal for 10th Anniversary Unveiled

A medal for the tenth anniversary of the creation of Sandus has been announced and unveiled today by the Office of the Sôgmô. The medal is designed by the Minister-President of Sandus’s friend and ally Saint-Castin, Dominic Desaintes. It draws on Sandum patriotic symbols like the mural crown, the sovereign eagle, and the wooden alms bowl.


The medal bears the dates 2009 and 2019.

Sandum citizens, Sandum-affiliated people, friends, and allies who are present and take part in the anniversary events happening in Ann Arbour, Quercus Candida, will receive the medal. Not all participants, however, but a select number of 15 medals will be given at the Sôgmô’s discretion.

The medals, which were designed in Saint-Castin and will be produced in Québec, Canada, will be given to recipients during events marking the momentous milestone in the Sandum capital later in May. The medal bears two inscriptions on it: “10 annis Sande,” Latin meaning “for 10 years of Sandus,” and “2009 – 2019.” The medals will be painted and will be given a ribbon in order to be worn along with honourees’ other micronational medals. The medal takes no place of precedence in the Sandum system of honours.

Still haven’t planned your trip to celebrate 10 Years since the Creation of Sandus? Répondez-vous s’il vous plaît here or contact the Sôgmô directly.