Solstice Report: Sôgmô’s Legitimacy Unanimously Supported, 88.9% Participation

The Autumn season is one of the busiest times for Sandum citizens, and this has certainly been the case for us this year. We have celebrated the Armilustrium with much fanfare and joy, we have held a successful CPS Party Congress, and we have just finished an election that was the most participated in our history. Sandum citizens are becoming more and more committed to our humble micronation and are more and more interested in its independent cultural and social message.

A successful Autumn will mean a busy Winter, too. As this report discusses below, Sandus and her citizens will have much on their plates in the New Gregorian Year: a new government official will have to find her way to plan holiday celebrations and share holiday spirit; a body of five interreges will interview and select candidates for the position of heir who will take up the position of Sôgmô when það passes; and, new honours, awards, and prizes will be given and established in the New Year.

It is the Brumalia season in Sandus, also known as the “Halcyon Days.” Taking part in the spirit of the season, we are pleased to announce that Sandus has passed another major milestone in the history of its charity tax system: in 2018, Sandus has donated more than $5,000 USD to charitable foundations (sometimes to individuals themselves) and volunteered more than 1,000 hours!

Winter Solstice

Charity Taxes: Sandus has donated more than $5,000 in 2018!
Sandus has donated more than $5,000 USD in the past administrative year of 2018. After donating $1,095 in the winter, $2,174 in the spring, and $1,628  in the summer, recent reports are showing that (with only two citizens reporting) Sandus has donated $1,543.65 in the autumn—putting Sandus more than $1,400 over the $5,000 milestone! Never before have Sandum citizens donated so much money in one year alone. Sandum citizens donated to religious organisations and communities (Buddhist temples, Christian churches), museums, human rights organisations, wild life and environmental charities, organisations dedicated to LGBTQ+ equality and anti-Semitism, and other political charities.

History of Sandum Charity Taxes (2011-2018)

Sandus has earned $6,441.62 in 2018! This number may increase as more citizens declare their charity tax contributions.

Sandum citizens, likewise, volunteered more time this year than in previous years. 136 hours were volunteered for the benefit of others in the last season alone, with Sandum citizens volunteering time to political campaigns in the United States, serving as officials in student organisations, providing education, and going beyond the expectations of their job titles to serve others—without financial reward.

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Election 2018: Sôgmô’s Legitimacy Unanimously Supported, 88.9% Participation
The Sôgmô has received the unanimous support of the Sandum people to continue to govern and reign the State of Sandus. 88.9% of eligible Sandum voters turned out to vote for the Sôgmô’s reign, the highest turnout ever recorded. Eight votes in total were cast.

Five of those eight votes cast were also ballots for members of the Citizens’ Party of Sandus. They voted in the election on the Party’s Platform which was recently drafted by Party Secretary Adam Camillus von Friedeck. The ballots cast unanimously approved the Party Secretary’s platform.

Read the new Party Platform here.

Two petitions were cast, as well. One concerned diplomatic relations with the country of Aabaro, while the other petitioned the Sôgmô to review citizenship law to make it easier to become a Sandum citizen. This petition will be addressed by því over þess winter holiday.

Quot estis in convivio: Sôgmô creates, appoints Feaster
At the November 2018 Party Congress of the Citizens’ Party of Sandus, Party members focused on encouraging cultural cooperation and integration between citizens. A variety of solutions were discussed—encouraging “Sandum-adjacent” people to apply for citizenship, giving gifts to Sandum citizens, encouraging participation in holidays and online discussions—but one solution focused on creating a functionary, bureaucratic office to hold joyous events for all Sandum citizens involved.

On 20 December, during the Saturnalia, that position has now become the “Feaster,” or epulo in Latin after the Ancient Roman college of priests. The Sôgmô created the position yesterday in a decree announced on Sandum media.

Sisenna Melville, who is also the Bishop of ἡ Ἔκκλησία τῆς Σανδῆς (the Church of Sandus, a sodality of the Collegium Sacerdotum cooperative), has been appointed the first Sandum feaster.

The feaster is broadly charged with performing holiday duties, such as planning events and sharing information on the holiday—as well as sharing the spirit of the holiday! Special tasks include preparing for and celebrating important Sandum holidays, whether with other Sandum citizens or non-Sandum people, and consulting one-on-one with Sandum citizens on how to share the holiday spirit.

Melville will be compensated with the standard worker’s salary of 8¶c, and is entitled to (but does not automatically receive) a knighthood. (She already has one as virtue of her bishopric.) As a knight, she will as feaster receive a special charge of a patera or chalice on her coat of arms, and Feasters also receive an official carol.

Heir Needed: Caucus of Quinque Interreges to sit in 2019
The search for the Sôgmô’s heir has begun.

According to the May 2018 law on succession, the process for finding an heir lasts one year. It begins in the December before the anniversary of Sandus’s creation divisible by five (2019, 2024, and so on) with the sitting of a caucus of five interreges. The caucus is comprised of the three major Sandum officials in our republican constitution (the Sôgmô, the Party Secretary, and the Facilitator of the Council, also known together as the “Three Grand State Officers”). The Sôgmô appoints one interrex, while both the Party Secretary and the Facilitator appoint the fifth.

The caucus is comprised of the following members:

  1. The Sôgmô: Gaius Soergel Publicola
  2. The Party Secretary: Adam Camillus von Friedeck
  3. The Facilitator of the Council: Hatsu Ryuho
  4. Fourth Interrex: Sisenna Melville
  5. Fifth Interrex: Jan DeWitt

The caucus will meet for the first time in the New Gregorian Year.

Over the course of the next year, the Caucus of the Quinque Interreges, as they are officially known in this capacity: draw up the relevant criteria for someone to be a Sôgmô; brainstorm a long list of candidates; perform interviews and hold public meetings, if necessary, and reduce the list to about three to five candidates. The caucus then presents the list to the Party Congress of the Citizens’ Party of Sandus in November, and the Party then selects two candidates to be put on the ballot of that Winter Solstice’s election.

The winner of the election becomes the new heir.

But the position of heir only lasts five years or at the Sôgmô’s pleasure, since það can choose to prorogue the heir’s five year term and can be sacked by the Sôgmô. At any moment the Sôgmô may meet þess demise, however, and the heir elected will automatically become the Sandum monarch for life or for as long as they reign legitimately. The idea is both to have a flexible political system where there can be contingencies while also allowing for the heir elected to train and to learn how to be a Sandum monarch appropriately.

Former heirs who have honourably resigned (that is, are not sacked) receive the title of “heir sine officio” for life and are entitled to a knighthood.

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The Sanôba and the Sôgmô

Sanôba will visit Quercus Candida for January 2019
Sanôba Oliver will visit the Sôgmô next month for several weeks before his university returns to session in February. He will live at the Appartements du Sôgmô in the capital for three weeks and will later return to live with the monarch for the summer. It will be the second time he will have visited Sandum land since becoming Sanôba in April, two days before the Day of Foundation. The Sôgmô recently visited Minnesota in the United States, where the Sanôba is from, to celebrate American Thanksgiving with him and his family.

The royal couple met online several years ago in 2010 through a mutual friend, who was at that time a Sandum citizen. Both kept in touch over the years and they first met in person in March of this year, when the Sanôba visited the Sôgmô in Quercus Candida. They began dating a month later, two days before the Day of Foundation, on 11 April.

New Fraternal Order, Honours, and Nobles to come in 2019
In the upcoming year, the Sôgmô has announced þess intention to found a new fraternal order, to establish new honours, and to create new nobles and knighthoods.

New Order: the Fraternal Annonary Order of the Wooden Bowl
The Sôgmô has announced that they will create a new chivalric order dedicated to the purpose of philanthropy, charity, and almsgiving under the title of the Fraternal Annonary Order of the Wooden Bowl (Ordre annonaire fraternel du Bol en bois). The order will be comprised of members of three ranks: Chevaliers, Chevaliers banneret, and Seigneurs. Each member, too, is entitled to a squire who will receive a ribbon. The order’s official business will be done in French, and members may communicate in any language they please so long as it is translated into the record in French.

The name of the order refers to the wooden bowls carried by Buddhist bhikkhus to receive alms. Companions of the order, as members will be called, must pay dues according to their rank so that the order can donate the money to a charitable foundation. (The amount will be determined by an arcane formula tied to the value of French francs in 1945.) The order will meet to collect money, make decisions, and donate the money to a specific charity on the Tibetan Buddhist holiday Chökhor Düchen, or the ‘Festival of Turning the Wheel of Dharma,’ which occurs on the fourth day of the sixth Tibetan lunar month. This will be 6 July in 2019, the first time the order will meet.

Table of Dues by Rank

Rank Francs due (1945 value) Conversion (1₣ = 0.6714$)
Seigneur 25 16.79$ USD
Chevalier banneret 15 10.07$ USD
Chevalier 10 6.71$ USD
Squire 5 3.36$ USD

Membership will be capped at fourteen, not including squires: two seigneurs, four chevaliers banneret, and eight chevaliers.

New Honours: Commendationes, Ovationes, and Party and Council Honours
The Sôgmô will award new, extemporaneous honours in the form of commendationes, Latin letters of recommendation. These letters patent will be awarded for extraordinary actions on the part of Sandum citizens and non-citizens alike to reward and acknowledge outstanding character and virtue.

Commendatio example
An example of a commendatio given to the Sanôba.

Some commendations may be awarded with ovationes, meaning that they will be accompanied by a speech or a public statement. These commendations and ovations may be presented and given at public intermicronational events, such as next year’s 2019 MicroCon in Hamilton, Ontario, in Canada.

Other honours are possibly in the works for the Party and the Council. Already, the Council awards a laureate prize to important and significant artists and craftspeople, effectively making them national artists. But other honours may include a prize given by the Party Congress in recognition of outstanding achievement for the betterment of Socialism and Socialist and proletarian peoples. An award from the Council may recognise work done on behalf of the State of Sandus and may praise the work of particular citizens.

New Nobles: One Knighthood, Two Baronets, and One Baron next season
In the New Gregorian Year, there will be four new nobles in Sandus. One knighthood will be awarded to a non-Sandum citizen who has been a sound adviser to the Sôgmô on matters of constitutionalism and on thinking of new micronational alternatives. Two baronets will be awarded to the Sôgmô’s longstanding advisers and veritable friends—both of whom are Sandum citizens. And, finally, one barony will be awarded to the Sôgmô’s most trusty adviser and friend.

Adam Camillus von Friedeck will become Sandus’s first baron in the New Year, in recognition of his long and dedicated service to Sandus and to the Sôgmô. Although he will not receive an entitled and inholden barony, his personal grant of the rank of baron reflects his long tenure as Sandus’s second Grand State Officer, the Party Secretary. He already holds a baronetcy as Baronet Eliot and is a member of the gentry.

Hatsu Ryuho will become Sandus’s second baronet and will be known as Baronet Wexford. His entitled grant of a baronetcy reflects his service to the Social System as former premier of Kumano and his long-term service as Sandus’s third Grand State Officer, the Facilitator of the Council. This will be his first noble rank.

Oliver Armstrong will become Sandus’s third baronet. Although he will not receive an entitled grant of a baronetcy, his close proximity to the Sôgmô as the Sanôba and as the Sôgmô’s boyfriend are the grounds for such a high Sandum noble rank. He is already a member of the gentry.

Jan DeWitt will receive an offer for knighthood on account of his close and intimate discussions with the Sôgmô on Sandum constitutionalism. A scholar of Roman constitutionalism and political culture, DeWitt will be Sandus’s second non-citizen knight.

Quot estis in convivio: Sôgmô creates, appoints Feaster

PateraDetailed

Detail of a patera, a symbol of the feaster, depicting Athena.

At the November 2018 Party Congress of the Citizens’ Party of Sandus, Party members focused on encouraging cultural cooperation and integration between citizens. A variety of solutions were discussed—encouraging “Sandum-adjacent” people to apply for citizenship, giving gifts to Sandum citizens, encouraging participation in holidays and online discussions—but one solution focused on creating a functionary, bureaucratic office to hold joyous events for all Sandum citizens involved.

On 20 December, during the Saturnalia, that position has now become the “Feaster,” or epulo in Latin after the Ancient Roman college of priests. The Sôgmô created the position today in a decree announced on Sandum media. Continue reading

Equinox Report: For A Familiar Autumn

Autumn has long been considered a season for us that has held much cultural importance. It is a cosy time, a time well spent betwixt rouge falling leaves, with hot drinks on a cool night, and socialising with friends and family during celebrations of our holidays like the Armilustrium or the National Day of Socialism. It is a season spent with our family, which in Sandus is a combination of our ascribed and chosen family. It is a time spent in the wonders of nature and rejoicing and being thankful for our humble lives—lives we labour for and we control in our small, fiercely-independent country.

This equinox marks not just the beginning of Autumn, a season which is very joyful and nostalgic to many Sandum people, but today also coincides with a Sandum holiday celebrated now for five years: Celebrate Bisexuality Day. Celebrated here since 2013, this is a holiday that has been part of Sandus’s cultivation of a distinct culture, as here it is a day to not just celebrate bisexuals but also celebrate bisexual themes in art and in our lives. A third of Sandum citizens are, after all, bisexual, while a half of Sandus are LGBTQ+.

This celebration during a time of equal day and night relates our country to themes of liberality, to openness and tolerance, to a conscious, purposeful, intentional life. It is a calm life, spent without reservations and without regrets.

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Charity Taxes: $1,600 USD, 88 hours volunteering
With only a few charity tax declarations in, this past Summer has been another record breaking season for the State of Sandus. Of only three charity tax declarations so far, Sandum citizens have donated $1,628.71 USD to charity in the past season, as well as volunteered their time for 88 hours total. This means that this past season was the second most charitable to date, and puts the State of Sandus within $100 of donating more than $5,000 USD to charity in the last year!

As more declarations are made, this section will be updated.

Three Officers of State support Council Reform
Over the last season, the Facilitator of the Council and the Sôgmô have prepared plans for a reform of the Council, Sandus’s democratic assembly. On 11 July, Facilitator Hatsu Ryuhu published a four-point plan for the Council’s reform, which include:

  1. The Sôgmô has a ceremonial and emergency role as head of state and chairperson of the Council, while the Facilitator will become Speaker.
  2. The Speaker will be elected for six months.
  3. Citizens who are members of the Council will be known as Councilors.
  4. There will be an annual Speech from the Throne on the State of the State, sometime near the Spring Equinox.

The Sôgmô has produced a bill which has been shared with the other Officers of State that builds on this plan, with some modifications. In it, all three Officers of State have a role to play in the Council, a new office of a chargé·e d’affaires where councillors are deputised to perform and exercise a function, and an established constitutional convention has been written down. This plan will be presented at the upcoming Party Congress in November 2018.

CPS Party Congress 2018 poster.png

Party Congress 2018: For the Sandum Cultural Worker
The 2018 CPS Party Congress now has a set date, 3 November 2018. The congress will focus on the election of the Party Secretary and especially on the theme of cultural production. While last year’s theme was focused on the subject of the Sandum identity, relatively close to this year’s theme, the theme of this CPS Party Congress focuses on the production of culture and specifically on how Sandum citizens construct culture in Sandus.

The sitting Party Secretary has begged the question about how we shall commemorate our tenth anniversary “in a way that aligns with the Sandum philosophy.” To what extent is Sandum citizenship about producing culture? How is culture a production, and how does that production relate to the intellectual production prevalent in Sandus today?

All these questions and concerns will be the subject of the Party’s congress in November.

State Media Cooperative plans Council, Party logos
The SMC has planned logos for the Council and the Citizens’ Party of Sandus, which are meant to focus on simplicity and on the symbols related to the constitutional organs. The proposed logo for the Council features a letter C in the shape of a Roman comitium, an architectural structure that was used for elections and assembly meetings during the Roman Republic. Thus, the symbolism of the Council’s logo reflects the classical republican nature of the Sandum constitution.

The Party’s logo features the English abbreviation of the name of the Party, CPS, in lower case below the Party flag. The simple logo is meant to reflect the wordmark for the State of Sandus with changes in font and style, which is meant to represent a cohesive political vanguard in the State of Sandus.

These logos are expected to be presented and possibly approved by the relevant organs by the end of the season.

Preparing for October: Armilustrium Planning and Getting the Public Involved
During this season, the Sôgmô introduced an informal Facebook chat group meant to encourage discussion with many Sandum citizens at once, and the group has already led to some changes in how Sandus is run. In a discussion on how to encourage citizens to take part in Sandum holidays, Sisenna Melville recommended encouraging people to create rituals for the holidays and publishing them in advance of the holiday.

Only important holidays are expected to follow these programmatic ends, and these may include:

  • the Armilustrium, 19 October
  • Athena’s Day, or Sandum Thanksgiving, 29 November
  • Christmas, 25 Decemer
  • Festival of Peace, mid-January
  • Losar, or Tibetan New Year, February
  • Regifugium/Matronalia, or Sancta New Year, 1 March
  • Minervalia, 19 March
  • Passover, March-April
  • Easter, March-April
  • Veneralia, or Sandum Love Day, 1 April
  • Lemuralia, part of Remembrance Day, 7-15 May (on only the odd numbered days)
  • Lammas, 1 August
  • Yom Kippur, September

These holidays, and maybe more, will be some of the first examples of rituals produced under this new system. Sisenna Melville has offered to produce the first ritual for the Armilustrium, and the Collegium Sacerdotum is taking offers for the others.

Sandum Church granted new Monogram, Logo

Sacerdotium

ἡ Σανδῆς Ἐκκλησία logo display.png The new logo of the Sandum Church

The Sandum Church (officially known as ἡ Σανδῆς Ἐκκλησία in Greek) has been granted a new monogram and logo from the Sôgmô in þess role as the Sacer Flamen of the Collegium Sacerodotum. The monogram is composed of the letters of the Latin IHS monogram, meaning “Iesus Hominum Salvator” (Jesus the People’s Saviour), and contains the colours of found in the coat of arms of the State of Sandus.

The significance of the new monogram, as described by the Sacer Flamen, is that the three lines separated by a single horizontal line represent the Trinity in heaven and on earth. The number three is also significant to Sandus generally because of the tripartite Sandum Philosophy.

ἡ Σανδῆς Ἐκκλησία The new emblem or monogram of the Sandum Church depicts the stylised letters IHS and the Sandum national flag.

The church’s logo is comprised of the monogram…

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Sôgmô issues First Economic Command for the Armilustrium

Armilustrium 2015

The Armilustrium is Sandus’s oldest and most important cultural holiday.

The Sôgmô has issued Sandus’s first economic command, thereby inaugurating the Sandum command economy, since the Commission for the Command Economy’s meeting this past summer on the economy. The command calls upon workers of the Collegium Sacerdotum, Tellus Agrarian, and Erganê Artisanal Cooperatives and interested Sandum citizens to celebrate the Sandum fall holiday, the Armilustrium, on 19 October and from then to 22 October 2017. If the State and the worker agree to terms, the worker will receive $10 USD plus be reimbursed for up to $20 USD in costs.

The command asks that they provide a description of their activities related to the holiday and of how the activities can be used in the future as a Sandum tradition.

The Armilustrium has long been considered Sandus’s most important cultural holiday. A Roman festival, of the same name, was held outside the walls of the city of Rome, where returning legions would wash (lustrate) their weapons in a ceremonial way—as if removing blood guilt from their arms. As Sandus does not have a military and is a pacifist nation, Sandum citizens instead customarily wash their books—symbols of Sandus’s own sort of intellectual combat—and clean their homes. In the evening, they then enjoy a feast. For the first time, the holiday is being extended by the government to encompass the Gregorian weekend.

The results of the Sôgmô’s first economic command will be shared by Veritum Sandus after the Armilustrium.

ECONOMIC COMMAND 2000260920171

TO: members of the Collegium Sacerdotum, Tellus Agrarian, and Erganê Artisanal Cooperatives; interested citizens

1. PURPOSE: to celebrate the Armilustrium, the Autumnal festival

2. DIRECTION:
Be commanded that the Armilustrium should be celebrated in anyway you please on 19 October 2017, or from then until 22 October 2017, whether by arts & crafts, food, or otherwise
Be commanded that you draw up a brief description of your proposed festivities
Be commanded that your festivities point to possible future traditions to be shared in common by the Sandum People

3. REIMBURSEMENT: In accordance with the decision of the 18 June 2017 meeting of the Commission for the Command Economy, this command is a contract between individual workers and the State of Sandus.
If you will do as commanded, you will receive $10 USD plus the operational costs (not exceeding $20), or other reimbursement of equal value.

4. ARBITRATION: We are obliged to inform you that the Citizens’ Party of Sandus and its secretary oversee questions related to equity of work and reimbursement.

C. SOERGEL PUBLICOLA, SÔGMÔ

Equinox Report: A Season of Changes, A Lifetime of Sandum Traditions

The vernal equinox marks, in Sandus, the beginning of the cultural season—the winter, when our “doors are kept shut.” It is a moment of time when Sandus prepares for its most important cultural holidays: the Armilustrium, the Party’s Congress, Athena’s Day, the Winter holidays. But it is also a time of self-reflection and an inward turning toward Sandus.

The summer is always a very much diplomatic period for us. But this past season saw tremendously significant diplomatic and international events. The Sôgmô attended and presented at MicroCon 2017 and was awarded not an insignificant number of medals. One of our Sandum citizens publicly came out as a trans woman, and the entire country celebrated her; on the other hand, Sandus—along with several allies—condemned the US president’s decision to ban transgender servicepeople from the American military. We significantly reshaped our conceptions of the Sandum constitution, and formed the State Media Cooperative. The Sôgmô published a Sagamorial Consideration of the United States’ controversy over Confederate statues, especially after the attack in Charlottesville. On the more decorous end of our public work, we also created four instances of gentry among Sandum citizens.

The time now is to turn toward Sandum traditions and our culture, however. Yesteryear’s Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift encouraged the move toward a cultural state. The constitution of Sandus will remain unchanged, but the conception guiding Sandus shall now be more focused on culture and less on our own state-building. Now, more than ever, this is needed for Sandus.

Pour la construction

BREAKING: Sandus breaks another Charity Tax Record
Sandus has broken yet another tax record, a year after its extraordinary record. The cornerstone of Sandus’s philanthropic mission, charity taxes, have significantly grown in the past season. This season’s charity taxes are rather more than those of the seasons in the past year, that is, those seasons since last Summer’s extraordinary donations of $1,118 USD. This season, $1,462.41 USD have been donated to charity, while 92 hours of work has been done in volunteering.

These numbers significantly surpass, and even double, the last year’s donations, with $604 and 99 hours in Spring, $395 and 62 hours in Winter, and $677 and 74 hours from last Autumn. Volunteering trends have continued, encompassing tutoring, organisational volunteer work, and other small acts of philanthropy.

Coat of Arms of Quercus Candida

The Coat of Arms of the new Sandum province, Quercus Candida.

New Province, New Capital:
Kremlum Sandus, the traditional heartland of Sandus since 2009, is no longer the official seat of power in the State of Sandus. Quercus Candida, Sandus’s new capital, was established this morning, on the Equinox, one month after the Sôgmô moved to þess new university to pursue a PhD. in ancient history.

MicroCon7

La Microfrancophonie ensemble: le Sôgmô est avec le ministre-président de Saint-Castin, Dominic Desaintes-Bellemare, et le prince d’Aigues-Mortes, Jean Pierre IV.

MicroCon 2017:
In this past season, the Sôgmô travelled to Atlanta from MicroCon 2017 with the President-Minister of St.Castin, a close Sandum friend and ally who is also a member of l’Organisation de la MicroFrancophonie. While there, það met with Sandus’s close Francophone allies and partners, including the Prince and Princess of Aigues-Mortes, met new micronationalists, and formed new friendships on behalf of Sandus.

Trans Rights, a Summer of Despair and Liberation:
The Summer has been tumultuous in terms of LGBTQ+ rights in the United States, our close partner in the condominium, but Sandus has cause to celebrate. Sandus and a throng of its allies condemned the decision of the US president to restrict transgender servicepeople from the US military. One of our citizens came out as transgender, reminding us of the immense bravery it takes to take such a leap—especially in such a political and social climate. An editorial was published, as well, listing Sandus’s own trans history.

Yet, this upcoming season is a time to remember our politics and the humanitarian mission of the Sandum State. In November, we have celebrate Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) since 2011, when the State of Sandus was founded. In Sandus today, trans history is Sandum history, and we are ever cognisant of that fact.

CCE & SMC—Developing Sandus’s Economic Framework:
The economic framework of the State of Sandus was updated in the past season to now reflect a new model of employment and work in the State of Sandus. The Commission for the Command Economy (CCE) met for the first time to approve the new appointment-based employment in the State of Sandus, whereby a citizen may be a worker of multiple organs at once and receive a basic salary of 8¶c from each appointment—a salary which can be used to purchase products based on conversion to other currencies from the Sandum circulatory persuma. The CCE also established a basic system of commands, whereby the Sôgmô may issue an economic command to be completed by Sandum workers of a particular cooperative. The CCE also approved the Sôgmô’s budget, which encourages Sandum cooperative to help to contribute to Sandum culture through specific initiatives.

In addition to the CCE, the Sôgmô established a pan-media cooperative, the State Media Cooperative. The SMC will undertake management of media organs in the State of Sandus, whereas those media organs derived from other cooperatives (Sacerdotiumthe Voice of Sandus, etc.) will have their editorial management overseen by the affiliated cooperative.

Future Plans: Affirming Our Culture through Holidays & Traditions
Following in the developments of the CCE this past Summer, the Sôgmô has signalled that the first economic command will be send to members of the economic cooperatives and the cultural cooperative of the Collegium Sacerdotum to plan for celebrating the Armilustrium (19 October). Following this, and pursuant to the budget approved by the CCE, more projects will be enacted to encourage participation in other significant Sandum holidays—from the Armilustrium to Athena’s Day and the Winter Holidays.

throneofsandus_emblem

Awarding the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus—Addressing the Backlist:
Awards of the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus (MHOTS) have been on a backlist since 2011, when the order was established. Some recipients have received their awards, while many others have now. Finally, the Sovereign of the order, the Sôgmô, will work to address this backlist and to send out the medal and associated paraphernalia to recipients of the honour. After MicroCon 2017, we have seen just how significant and important these marks of distinction and honours are.

In addition to the order, other honours are being planned for the State of Sandus. There are, in addition to the practical awarding of instances of nobility, the awards to be given by the Party and Council, as well as a new order for Sandum citizens only in recognition of their academic achievements.

Solstice Report: We shall never let up!

This past season has proven to be further evidence and testament of Sandum perseverance and of the persistance of the Sandum spirit. Sandus, its state, and its nation have continued collectively through the most difficult periods yet in some of our citizens’ lives. Three Sandum citizens, in the highest positions of authority and power in Sandus, either completed a thesis or a degree, and one both, in their respective fields. Others returned to higher education, while some others grappled with significant personal decisions. The contemporary world has proven to be erratic, with much stress and anxiety about its future. But, one thing is clear: Sandus, under our current government, is here to stay.

Despite tremendous personal work, Sandum citizens have remained committed to Sandum culture and the ideals of the Sandum Philosophy. Today, we are even more aware of the suffering of all people—Sandum citizen or not. The risk for failure and for crisis is all the more greater, both personally and nationally, but Sandus has shown it can and will succeed. This quarter is further historical proof of the persistance and endurance of our courage and strong will.

Tremendous work has been completed in this past quarter, and the prospects are all the more promising for the next quarter. Significant changes to the Sandum economy have been completed; new Sandum workers are preparing for their work; the Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift has been accomplished; and, the Council and the Party are courageously forging new paths of development and the Sôgmô is at þess post.

Summer2017

Charity Taxes: Above Average, but Trends continue
Charity taxes over the past Spring season have increased since the Winter season, and this past season has come close to breaking records and was the fourth most charitable season in terms of donations. $604.16 USD were donated to charity in the Spring season of 2017, up slightly from the $395 given to charity last season in Winter 2017. The amount, however, is less than half of the most money ever donated in Sandus in Summer 2016, when Sandus donated more than $1,000 to charity.

When compared to hours volunteered, Sandum citizens volunteered more than 99 hours for philanthropic causes, the highest in recent years. These causes included working for animal shelters, mentoring and tutoring, working on service projects, and helping others in dire straights and mental crises.

Trends related to charity taxes have continued to show that taxes are slightly up. The average charity taxes for each season so far is $273.14, meaning that the State of Sandus has donated more money ($136.02) in the past season than the average. Charity taxes, we suspect, will continue to rise because of a few factors. First, there are more Sandum citizens than when Sandus started doing charity taxes, and there are more than twice as many citizens from when Sandus suffered its citizenship crisis in 2013. Second, Sandum citizens are more increasingly more prosperous and are working more hours and more jobs, while their wages are increasing with their age. In terms of volunteer work, however, there have been no significant changes.

The First Annual Sandum Budget: an optimistic forecast
The national budget, the second to be proposed by the Sôgmô, has been approved by the Commission for the Command Economy (CCE). The budget proposes that the State of Sandus spend $1,050 USD in “hard” expenses falling into four categories: website upkeep, salaries for Sandum workers, cooperatives’ expenses, and cultural expenses for holidays. Hard expenses include those for which economic activity is planned, while “soft” expenses—a planned budget of $950—are for reserved funds. Soft expenses include a Special Philia fund for cultural development, a Matter Realist fund for material production, a Trans*ition fund for trans* people’s transitions, a Health Reimbursement fund to help cover healthcare costs, and a flexible spending account.

Most planned revenue will be from voluntary taxes, with the Sôgmô’s personal contributions covering the hard expenses with monthly contributions of $90 USD per month. Approximately another $400 in individual voluntary taxes will cover soft expenses, while a final approximate revenue of $100 might come from cooperatives’ profits.

The First Salaries are Deposited 
By now, the first annual salaries have been deposited in CivBanca by the Bureau of the Treasury. 88¶c in total was deposited in five citizens’ accounts based on their work appointments in Sandus’s cooperatives. Of those five, the average Sandum worker has 2-3 appointments, while most Sandum citizens do not work in Sandum cooperatives at all. In the future, these salaries will be able to be redeemed for goods and services in and outside of Sandus through a conversion system to be set up by the Commission for the Command Economy. The Central People’s Government hopes, as well, to push citizens to join at least one cooperative as a worker.

Sôgmô’s Constitutional Project
Work has started in earnest on the Sôgmô’s Constitutional Project, a project envisioned by the 2016 Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift. The project is meant to develop a coherent, comprehensive view of Sandus’s constitution and all its component parts and to educate citizens on the constitution of the State of Sandus. This project will be completed in the future through a complex virtual model describing Sandus’s constitution and a variety of other infographics and visual media. The first part of this project will come on 24 June when the Sôgmô presents þess lecture on the Sandum constitution at MicroCon in Atlanta, GA, USA.

A New Capital for Sandus: 
With the Sôgmô’s move in August, concerns are being raised about how Sandus will respond to þess departure and living permanently away from Kremlum Sandus Province. How will Sandus cope with the Sôgmô’s departure?

The location of the seat of power will have to change, that is certain, and it will follow það to the peninsula of Michigan. We can perhaps find precedent in the monarchical history of Europe, where the seat of power was located wherever the king was. This is compelling, and, since the Gradient Sovereign Condominium Theory proposes that Sandum sovereignty is wherever an individual citizen is, the State of Sandus will already follow the Sôgmô. In some way, the theory makes this a nonissue. But the key, perhaps, to the Sôgmô’s location of power and capital should be the placement of the Sandum pignae d’esti.

The pignae d’esti (the name was never officially translated into Latin) contain the Sôgmô’s Dharmachakra on þess altar, the statue of Holy Athena the Mother, and the so-called “Pavorio pigno”—the vase of our national colours filled to the brim with peacock feathers. To these should be added the national tricolour and the Books of the Armilustrium, the compilation of all the books washed in Armilustrium ceremonies. Finally, future pignae should be developed to meet future circumstances and to encompass future citizens and all citizens’ experiences, as well. In the future, perhaps a specific work-group in the Collegium Sacerdotum should be developed to maintain the pignae and to develop even more ones.

throneofsandus_emblem

Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus & the new Nobility
Medals for recipients of the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus will hopefully arrive in time to be given at MicroCon. If not, they will be sent by mail at a later date. This will include medals for Olivia-Eugenie and Jean Pierre of Aigues-Mortes and Dominic DeSaintes-Bellemare, as well as a couple extra medals which can be kept or given at the convention.

Escutcheon&Helm - Charles Edward Wright

In addition, in May, the Sôgmô awarded Sandus’s first knighthood to Charles Edward Wright, of Indian Head, Maryland, who is þess former coworker and supervisor. The knighthood is the first grant in the Sandum Table of Noble Ranks, though more are planned for the future. In addition, in the coming months, the Sôgmô will collectively grant all members of the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus the status of “gentleperson” in the Sandum system of nobility.

Finally, the Sôgmô is considering establishing more medals and decorations in the future, but such decision shall be taken with much gravity and with the advice of the þess advisers and counsellors.

13 Reasons to Celebrate in January

January is the beginning of the Gregorian Year, but it is also the beginning of the new Administrative Year in Sandus. But January also has 13 Sandum holidays in it which give even more reason to celebrate, especially as this month is known in Sandus as the “Month of Peace.”

festivals-of-pax-and-concordia

The Collegium Sacerdotum’s annual poster for the festivals of Peace and Concord, which give reason to January’s nickname “the Month of Peace.”

1 January: the Kalends
Every month in the Sancta calendar begins with a Kalends, a remnant of the old Roman calendar. On the Kalends, the Roman pontifex maximus would announce the holidays celebrated in the upcoming month and how many days remained until the next Kalends, or the new month. This day is always dedicated to Juno, the Queen of the Gods, and to Janus, the god of beginnings and of doors. In January, however, Aesculapius is also propitiated for good health in the new year.

5 January: the Nones
Every month also has its own Nones, another remainder from the old Roman calendar, which originally marked the first quarter of the moon. On the Nones, the Lares or the domestic gods are propitiated, but in January the minor god Vica Pota is also propitiated. She is a very archaic Italic goddess equivalent to Victoria, the goddess of victory, and who was the mother of Dis Pater, an early Italic god of the underworld.

9 January: Agonalia
An obscure Roman holiday, the Agonalia is celebrated three times per year. The purpose of this festival was obscure even to Romans, but it appears to be dedicated to the gods of state.

10 January: First Policy Projection
This minor State holiday commemorates the first policy projection issued by the Sôgmô on 10 January 2012. Policy projections are one means of holding the Central People’s Government responsible and accountable in the State of Sandus, since the government sets goals for policies to complete in a [hopefully] timely manner.

11-15 January: Carmentalia
Originally two feast days, 11 and 15 January, the Carmentalia is celebrated by Sandus from 11 to 15 January. The goddess Carmenta was known as “Antevorta” and “Postvorta,” meaning she looked both ahead to the future and behind in the past, which is an apt holiday for a country which is so focused on history and academia. The goddess appears to be related to the noun carmen, which can mean both a “spell” or a “poem.” This holiday can certainly be celebrated for Sandus’s close affinity with scholarship, intellectualism, and the academe!

11 January: Festival of Juturna
This holiday is dedicated to Juturna, the spirit of a small spring that once flowed into the Forum Romanum in Rome. It was at this spring that the gods Castor and Pollux supposedly watered their horses after the battle of Lake Regillus, which secured the continued existence of the Roman Republic. In Sandus, this minor festival is known both for environmental and republican connotations.

12 January: Compitalia
The Lares Compitales, or the domestic gods of the neighbourhood and of the crossroads, are celebrated on this day. At each crossroad and in the districts or curiae of Rome, an altar to the Lares Compitales would be set up for members of the borough to worship. In Sandus, this minor holiday is notable for encouraging the awareness of provincial government in the State—from Kremlum Sandus to Sandus Ulterior and Sandus Europai.

13 January: the Ides
The Ides is another monthly Roman holiday which marks the full moon. This holiday is dedicated to Jupiter, the King of the Gods, and to the Lares, the domestic gods.

16 January: Concordalia
The Concordalia is, of course, a holiday dedicated to the goddess of concord. It is one of three holidays in the State of Sandus dedicated to peace in the month of January, which is also known in Sandus as the “Month of Peace.” Concordia is unique in her connotations with peace, since she is more known for harmony between peoples. The Latin adjective concors means to be in agreement or to be of one mind, so this holiday is known for this aspect of peace.

17 January: Festival of Felicitas
Felicitas, or the goddess Felicity, is known for the effects of peace, which are fruitfulness and prosperity. This holiday is one of the three holidays that gives reason to January being known as the “Month of Peace.” Her name comes from felix, which means both to be happy and to be prosperous. She and her festival are to celebrate good fortune, success, fertility, and happiness.

24-27 January: Paganalia & Sementivae
These festivals were not celebrated in Rome but elsewhere in the pagi, or rural districts. They were days of sowing seed, appointed not by the calendar by annually by the magistrate. So, while the two holidays were not fixed in the Roman calendar, they are known in Sandus to be in celebrated later in January on these days when the semen (seed) would be sewn. Perhaps one could draw similarities between this holiday and the Festival of Felicitas?

30 January: the Festival of Pax
The Festival of Pax, or of Peace, closes the month of January this year. The festival gives reason for why the month of January is known as the “Month of Peace” in Sandus and it is during this festival that we celebrate peace in general. So, hang your olive wreathes and let the doves fly—and hope for peace. Happy Festival of Pax!

Some extra reasons:
Since the Collegium Sacerdotum has recently adopted Buddhist holy days onto its Sancta calendar, the holy days are as follows:
5 January: Medicine Buddha Day
7 January: Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava) Day
12 January: Amitabha Day
22 January: Dakini Day
26 January: Dharmapala Day
27 January: Shakyamuni Buddha Day

The Council’s First Intercalary Session in the Administrative Year 2017 will end on 12 January. The First [regular] Session of the Council in the Administrative Year 2017 will last from 12 January to 10 February.

Sôgmô adds two new Days of Recognition to Sandum calendar

The Sôgmô has announced the addition of two new days of recognition to the Sandum calendar: African Diaspora Recognition Day on 12 February and Religious Tolerance Day on 24 August.

African Diaspora Recognition Day is a holiday intended to reflect on the diaspora of African peoples around the world as a result of slavery, colonialism, and imperialism. The holiday especially reflects the cultural and historic role of African Americans in the territory of the State of Sandus, from the history of slaves in the territory of Kremlum Sandus to contemporary cultural patrimony. The day was chosen because of its proximity to the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass and to avoid any overlap with other Sandum holidays.

Religious Tolerance Day is a holiday intended to reflect on religious violence and strife or violence spurred by religious tensions. This inclusive holiday commemorates the destruction of important religious shrines, like the temple in Jerusalem in 70 CE, as well as wars fought for religious reasons, such as the Crusades or contemporary religious conflicts. The day of recognition falls on St. Bartholomew’s Day because of its relation to a massacre of French protestant Huguenots by French Catholics in 1572.

State Press announces new series

KremlumSandus Press

The logo of the State Press.

Kremlum Sandus State Press has announced a new series, entitled Sovereign Eagle & Glaux (SEG), to be authored and published via Amazons’s Kindle Direct Publishing service. The new series will present elements of Sandum society and Sandum culture to the general public and will be published for Kindle devices and Kindle-compatible applications. Efforts will be made to reduce the cost of the ebooks so that they will be as accessible as possible.

The State Press has multiple book ideas proposed for the SEG series, including:

Breviarium Rerum Sanderum
The Breviary of Sandum Matters is a long proposed book which will finally be published. Originally proposed in spring 2015, the breviary will now be the first book to be published to Kindle devices, with sections on Sandum history, the Sandum constitution, Sandum philosophy, and Sandum culture.

Founding Law & Citizens: textbook for peregrini citizens on their new homeland
Founding Law & Citizens is a previously published textbook formerly used by the State College to prepare new peregrini citizens for life in Sandus. The textbook will be republished for Kindle devices and applications.

the Great Philia Almanac: festivities of the State of Sandus
The Great Philia Almanac will contain all 100+ Sandum holidays and an explanation of their background. Proposed as a project of the Collegium Sacerdotum, the almanac will form the basis of a new public media initiative.

On the Shores of the Patuxent: a cookbook of Sandum proletarian cuisine
Why is spaghetti carbonara such a staple in Sandus? How many Sandum rice recipes are there? How does the Sôgmô prepare his coffee? All of these questions will be considered in the new cookbook, On the Shores of the Patuxent.

Le Baron et la Révolution: l’histoire sande étroite éclectique avec la langue française
How did a young Anglophone North American micronation adopt the French language as its official language? What is Sandus’s relationship with Francophone micronations? In this ebook, published in French, that “eclectic short history” will be considered.

Credo in Deis Nostris: Sandus θεογονία in lingua Latina
This creed of the cultores religionis Romanae in the Sandum Collegium Sacerdotum, published in Latin, is intended as a prose counterpart to Hesiod’s Theogony. It will reflect the mystical and spiritual background of Sandum cultores and

The series is named for the national symbol of Sandus, the Sovereign Eagle, and the owl of the goddess and Sandum matron, Athena, named Glaux (γλαύξ, or ‘little owl’).