Decisions of the Ninth Session of the Council in 2017

The Ninth Session of the Council in the Administrative Year 2017 lasted from 6 September to 5 October 2017.

The Sôgmô established the new Sandum capital, Quercus Candida.
The Sôgmô gave þess first economic command for the Armilustrium.

There were no decisions made by the Council.

This was the third month of Facilitator Hatsu Ryuho’s three-month term. A new election will now be called.

Facilitator Hatsu Ryuho

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.

Sôgmô establishes new Capital Province

Coat of Arms of Quercus Candida

Exactly a month after moving to the area, the Honourable Sôgmô Gaius Soergel Publicola has established a new province as the seat of the Sandum government around the area in which það attends university as a graduate student. The new province’s name, Quercus Candida, was chosen by a popular decision of Sandum citizens in the Council.

The name, which is Latin for “Glistening-White Oak,” is based off of the Algonquin name, Giwitatigweiasibi, for the Huron River which flows near the province. The river was named after a burnt oak tree, presumably in the area, but this name was considered to be too dark for the name of Sandus’s new capital. Instead, to reflect traditional Sandum notions of rebirth and hope, the decision was made to name the province “White Oak” after the national colour.

Following the Sandum Sovereign Gradient Condominium theory, there is a central focus of sovereignty, while the periphery extends to encompass a bounded territory as sovereignty diminishes further away from the focus. The focus is centred on the Sôgmô’s residence and office, and emphasises as well the immediate locality of þess livelihood in the province including þess new Tibetan Buddhist temple.

The new province replaces Kremlum Sandus Province as the capital of the State of Sandus, which ceased to be the capital when the Sôgmô moved in August. It is centred around Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States.

Decisions of the Eighth Session of the Council in 2017

The Eighth Session of the Council in the Administrative Year 2017 lasted from 7 August to 6 September 2017.

The Council has decided on a name for the proposed new Sandum capital province, “Quercus Candida.”

The Sôgmô has formed a committee to draft a law on the Sôgmô’s succession.

This was the second month of Facilitator Hatsu Ryuho’s three-month term.

Facilitator Hatsu Ryuho

 

Le Mur des Drapeaux has been Removed

An early image of the Mur des Drapeaux, from October 2010.

Le Mur des drapeaux in October 2010

Sandus’s oldest Sandum national monument, le Mur des drapeaux, or “the Wall of the Flags,” has been removed from the Office of the Sôgmô in the Palace of State, Kremlum Sandus Province. The wall has been deconstructed in preparation for the Sôgmô’s move to Michigan, where það will attend graduate school.

The wall dates from June 2009 when the then-Lama of the Grand Lamate of Sandefreistikhan commissioned the wall as a national monument to flags of countries and movements which reflected þess vision for Sandus’s future. Early on, the Hammer and Sickle Flag, used by the USSR and subsequently by American Communists, featured prominently, as did the Tibetan flag as Sandefreistikhan was a Buddhist country. In addition, flags of French-speaking nations—like Québec, France, and Belgium—were also a key fixture.

Over the years, various flags have been added to the wall including the Maryland state flag, since Sandus’s cultural heartland is a condominium with the state of Maryland. Several high-profile and well-publicised flags have also been added, such as the LGBTQ+ Pride Flag and the Icelandic national flag.

The most recent flags to be inducted onto the wall were the flags of the United States and Canada, in commemoration of Canada’s 150th anniversary of the Articles of Confederation, in July 2017.

The flags will be moved to Michigan, where the Sôgmô will commission a new Mur des drapeaux. As a part of this move, the display of the flags will be made more regular and will be accompanied in the future with citations explaining why flags are placed on the wall.

The Flags of le Mur des Drapeaux

FlagofSandus

The Sandum Tricolour takes precedence on the wall since it placed independently of all the other groupings of flags and in a more prominent location.

The Sandum Tricolour is followed by:

  1. the flag of Belgium
  2. the Bi* Pride flag
  3. the flag of Canada
  4. the flag of the European Union
  5. the flag of France
  6. the flag of Germany
  7. the flag of Iceland
  8. the LGBTQ+ Pride flag
  9. the flag of Maryland
  10. the flag of Switzerland
  11. the flag of Tibet
  12. the flag of Tunisia
  13. the flag of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
  14. the flag of the United Kingdom
  15. the flag of the United States

Sandus Europāi Province founded

Coat of Arms of Sandus EuropaiThe Council has approved a motion by the Sôgmô Gaius Soergel Publicola to found the Province of Sandus Europāi. The province, whose name means “Sandus in Europe,” will be the province for Sandum citizens who currently reside on the European continent. At the moment, only one Sandum citizen, Jacob Barnet, lives in the province — though others may be residents of the province in the future. The province will be represented Jacob Barnet sine contentione, as he is the sole member of the province’s curia.

The move follows the Sôgmô’s Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift, which was approved by the Council in August and which envisions increasing the power of provincial governments.

The province’s coat of arms retains key Sandum symbolism, such as the Sandum heraldic element in the dexter chief of the escutcheon which represents Sandus Proper, while also affirming key European symbols. The emblem of the province, Europa reclining on Zeus the Bull, is on the base of the shield, while the flag of the European Union and the Council of Europe is in the sinister chief.

Sôgmô publishes the Philia Plan

The Sôgmô has published the Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift, detailing the plan of the Office of the Sôgmô to prepare the State of Sandus for þess departure for foreign PhD. programs in ancient history. The plan seeks to reduce the activity which það executes as result of constitutional obligations, while increasing the means by which governmental power can be exercised in the State of Sandus. It is the Sôgmô’s attempt to avert a constitutional breakdown of power, þess abdication, and the dissolution of the Sandum State.

The plan has now been sent to the Council of the State of Sandus for ratification of its seven provisions. Below is a provision-by-provision explanation of the plan.

  1. Vision for Sandum Society: The Sôgmô has made the case that Sandum national interests must be considered, while embracing the national diversity of the State of Sandus. More work must be done in terms of advancing Sandum culture and Sandum philosophy.
  2. the Gens System: In addition to provinces, a new administrative division will be created by gens, or administrative groups of families. Three different membership types — sanguine, familiar, and regional — have been established based on the different relationships with the overall gensGentes will elect a parensfamilias in their þings. The parentes will represent their gens to the Senate, whose parliaments will be convoked by the Sôgmô when needed.
  3. Simplification of the Anthropological Polity: The emphasis on governance will lessen and the role of the State will be more for cultural and philosophical development. Rather than necessarily see Sandus as a state which must meet the obligations of a nation-state, Sandus will instead be viewed as a micronation: a state with the anthropological characteristics of a tribe. Emphasis will be on Sandum culture and on the interdisciplinary view of Realism.
  4. Relaxing Activation Energy — or, the Decentralisation of Sagamorial Functions: This extended provision with its five sub-provisions establishes specific changes to the nature of the Sandum State to reduce the burden of activity on the Office of the Sôgmô.
    1. Scribe: a scribe position will be added to the Central People’s Government in order to fulfil the Sôgmô’s journalist and annalist functions
    2. Devolving Provincial Government — the role of Curiae and Praetors: provinces will now have a curia, a provincial assembly to make consultations for provincial policies, and a praetor, an official like the Sôgmô and the Facilitator on the provincial level
    3. Establishing new ministries — the Gendarmerie and Diplomatic Affairs: the first two Sandum ministries will be established in the Gendarmerie, a paramilitary force responsible for policing and security functions, and the Ministry of Diplomatic Affairs, Sandus’s first foreign ministry
    4. Affirming the Independence of the Facilitator and the Secretary
    5. Imperium — the Realist principle on the exercise of power: despite the many new institutions formed, they will be used in a way to devolve power from the Sôgmô and they will be used as needed without an expectation of constant activity; imperium will be explained in another Realist treatise
  5. the Ultimate Question: The Sôgmô has reaffirmed the principle of popular sovereignty, saying that það would abdicate if það should fail “in the constitutional and legitimate exercise of [þess] duties” as a result of a failed annual election.
  6. for a New, Coherent Citizen Law: The Sôgmô affirmed the effort by Facilitator Bee Rodgers Albina’s caucus to write a comprehensive citizenship law responding to citizenship concerns from citizens and the party membership concern from the November 2015 Party Congress.
  7. the Sôgmô’s Constitution Project: The Sôgmô will work with civis Akhil Indurti to create an interactive infographic of the Sandum constitution to be used as an educational tool for all Sandum citizens.

The Council will now discuss the plan and will ratify the plan provision-by-provision.

The entire plan can be found here.

Solstice Report: Administrative Work, Plan continue

Each summer, the State of Sandus opens both its gates to economic production and its ports to diplomatic interaction. This season is no different, but the past spring season has shown itself to be a lull in activity while still affirming and reaffirming Sandum cultural traditions. The work of the State of Sandus in the past season has dropped so that relatively little profound governmental work has been done, but it has been shown that the traditions of our country have nevertheless persisted. All administrative work has been completed in accordance with prescribed traditions and some profound changes have been made in the realm of the Council so that, for the first time in that democratic assembly’s history, there has been a transfer of power between two elected facilitators.

The statement that little profound work has been done might let red flags abound, but rather it shows that Sandus can remain being Sandum and still do the basic administrative and clerical work of government without altering the State in profound ways. Indeed the State of Sandus has entered a period of stagnation, but it is by no means inactive or at risk of collapse. In the past season, national holidays have been celebrated, diplomacy has been done, a new facilitator has been elected, the backlog of Sandum citizenship applications has been redressed, and the need for a new plan has been discussed. This work is perhaps most profound in post economically-focused Sandus, where emphasis now is on the culture, society, and politics of the Nation-State of Sandus.

Victoria.png

“Whether in Summer or in Spring, let’s further our Republic

Charity Taxes — furthering recent trends:
In the past season, Sandum citizens have continued the trends established in the most recent seasons in furthering the philanthropic work of the State of Sandus. Work has been done to further philanthropic causes without necessarily donating money to charity, and this has been more thoroughly the case in the last week of the season with the attack in Orlando. More than $166.49USD have been donated to charity, but a large amount of philanthropic work has been done with helping others, tutoring others, and increasing loving-kindness.

Philia Plan for the Major Social Shift:
The Sôgmô has announced the beginnings of a five-point plan to increase the efficiency of administrative work of the Central People’s Government and to reduce the burden of work on the Office of the Sôgmô. The layout of the Philia Plan for the Major Societal Shift is as follows:

  1. Vision of the Plan: The plan envisions a future for the State of Sandus which encourages diversity on an intranational level that will facilitate the broader social and political aims of this plan.
  2. the Gens System: The plan envisions a new system of “gentes,” or families, to replace the monolithic system of provinces. The province system shall continue to exist as broad administrative regions loosely based on geography and location, but the gens system will add the role of familial and domestic lineages between relatives and familiars.
  3. Simplification of the Anthropological Polity: The plan hopes to change the model of Sandum society from one based on a state to one based on tribal society, while retaining the plupart of the current Sandum constitution.
  4. Decentralisation of Sagamorial Functions: The plan foresees the functions of the Sôgmô to be both reduced and decentralised to other functionaries in the Central People’s Government of Sandus.
  5. Adherence to the Constitution: The plan ardently stresses the continued adherence to the Sandum republican constitution.

A complete plan is expected no later than mid-July.

Sôgmô announces concerns, plans for Major Social Shift

The Sôgmô of the State of Sandus has sent a long letter to Sandum citizens in the Council of the State of Sandus about his concerns of his future ability to discharge the duties and responsibilities of the Office of the Sôgmô. Citing his future academic and career plans, the Sôgmô has made public his concerns that he may be unable to carry out fully all of his responsibilities of Sôgmô of the State of Sandus.

The Sôgmô has announced a five point plan in order to lessen the responsibilities of his office, to change the social nature of Sandus to be more conducive towards its size, to encourage popular involvement in the running of the State of Sandus, and to stress the legal and political possibilities of his failure to discharge completely his duties. Though not a complete or finalised plan, the Sôgmô’s plan will tremendously shift Sandum society. The plan seeks to decentralise further the power of the Sôgmô which has been successively decentralised since the establishment of the Council in December 2014.

The plan includes a plan to realign the vision of the State to a new anthropological model of polity, more in line with chiefdoms, tribes, or segmentary societies than with the modern nation-state. Furthermore, the plan would replace the provincial system with a gens system which individual houses and families. The functions of government would be further decentralised with the establishment of a scribe position, the increased role of the facilitator, and with greater individual power over the direction of the State of Sandus.

Below is the Sôgmô’s message.

Good evening, comrade citizens.

I hope this message finds you well.

For almost seven years now, I have led Sandus as its founder and leader. Despite some periodic setbacks, I believe my leadership has brought to Sandus a tremendous leap forward for our people, a leap which stands out as a principled revolution in the micronational world. Instead of doing our business for attention or for amusement, our business of state has always been one based on the principles found in the Sandum Philosophy of Buddhism, Socialism, and “Sancta.”

This philosophy was first introduced into Sandus as a unifying factor in 2011 and 2012, during which time the State of Sandus was first forming as Sandus’s cohesive constitution. Over the years, Sandus has also stressed its similarly tripartite political theories of Libera, Realism, and Philia. The philosophical and sociocultural life of Sandus has, in my opinion, especially grown stronger since 2013, when some of Sandus’s former citizens left the State of Sandus or micronationalism altogether. That is, especially with the resurgence of the socia systema with Kumano and Überstadt, with Akhil becoming a full citizen, and with Bee becoming a peregrina or auxiliary citizen.

I am, however, growing older and my professional life will become more of a hassle in the future. Already my attention to the duties of this office has slipped and no longer is Sandus my first and primary concern. It is at this point in my professional career where I am beginning to decide on post-graduate Ph.D. programs in history, which will require a minimum of 4-5 years (if not longer) to complete, during which time micronationalism shall be on the back-burner — not even to say anything of any possible professorships in the future.
I should note, admittedly with some pride, that I have already surpassed the time when most micronationalists my age would have given up and called it quits. And I should also make clear that I am not (at this moment) stepping down from the Office of the Sôgmô. The constitution of the State of Sandus shall continue to exist — and I hope it shall continue to exist for a very long time. But, as the leader of the Sandum State and Nation, I believe that I must make all my fellow citizens aware of the nature of their leader’s life, my thoughts, your liberties as citizens.

(1) My vision for Sandus’s future is to create a diverse, multi-national state under the present constitution. I believe that Sandus should ideally become a more cultural rather than dogmatic micronation, wherein we adhere strictly to cultural practices and leave politics to certain occasions (elections, congresses, meetings, etc). I have had problems in the past trying to encourage others to take part in cultural building, but I hope that some changes will spur you and others to take part.

(2) I believe that provinces should be replaced with a system of “gentes,” or families, based on one’s location and area. Much like the gradient sovereign condominium theory, where the territorial claim of Sandus is conceived of as a gradient, this new “gens” system will allow (and I hope encourage) people to become cives peregrini, or auxiliary citizens, like the status Bee Rodgers Albina has. Furthermore, I believe that the names of our citizens must be proudly displayed on our website, rather than away in a Google spreadsheet, to encourage pride in Sandum identity and to augment the national identity. This gens system will also be able to fall along national lines, to facilitate those who are socii cives, or partial or foreign citizens.

(3) The future of the State of Sandus is not in being a state so conceived, but rather to explore anthropological alternatives to the nature of a state. For this, I require much more research into anthropological societies and polities, but this is to say that the emphasis should not be on the politics of Sandus but on the Sandum national identity. To put this into comparative micropatriological terms, I believe Sandus should strive to be more like the Formori.
The Formori are a Francophone international micronation without any political organs but with many prevailing cultural traditions and institutions. Although I think we should not neglect the Sandum constitution of the State of Sandus, I believe we must go back to basics. We should strive to ritualise the functions of the Sandum State and to encourage the development of Sandum culture, and this is in part where the gens system comes in.

(4) I believe I will still be able to fulfill the basic obligations of my office, but I will have to find people to replace some of my duties and to decentralise some of the functions of my office. To date, very few have exercised the ability to publish to the Sandum website. I publish many of the periodic publications of the State of Sandus. In the future, I would like to hire a scribe to take over this function from me, to publish the policy projections and the monthly decisions of the Council. I would also like to see the facilitator of the Council take more initiative in the governance of the Council, to act independently of me.
In the Sandum constitution, my position is supreme. I believe most will recall that the Founding Law says that, “All power is to the Sôgmô.” But, our constitution has changed and has added new functions and responsibilities since the Founding Law was ratified in April 2011. Admittedly, I will need help in the future to remain on top of these responsibilities and to begin to decentralise my power.

(5) I should note, as well, that it is an element of our national constitution that Sandum citizens should decide the future of our State. You all have self-determination and popular sovereignty over the direction of our micronation. If in the future I am irresponsible in the performance of my duties, I encourage you all now to vote that my reign as Sôgmô is illegitimate and to institute a new wholly democratic constitution for Sandus. It is, however, not my hope to fail you in the exercise of my duties. As Sôgmô, my position rests somewhere between benevolent philosopher-kind and elected president, but I would like to reaffirm my commitment to the Sandum constitution.

In conclusion, I believe the nature of the Sandum society must be radically changed in the next year and a half. I encourage all of you to take more of a proactive role in the running of our micronation, even if it is not your primary micronation. I hope that, after having read this rather long message, you will respond below with your thoughts, comments, and/or question on each of the five points I enumerated above, even if simply to let me know that you read this message in its entirety.

As Sôgmô, I do not wish to abdicate or to err in the discharge of my duties, though I fear that the direction of my life ahead of me will make my involvement in micronationalism rather difficult. Therefore, I turn over the discussion and ideas to all of you, so that together we might resolve the future constitutional challenges which may plague our State.

In the Name of the Three Jewels and the Benedictions of All the Gods,

Gaius Soergel Publicola
Sôgmô of the State of Sandus

Revolutionaries’ Day celebrated Here

Revolutionaries' Day(alpha)

Revolutionaries’ Day has been celebrated here in Kremlum Sandus Province this past weekend, starting on 22 April to today 24 April. Revolutionaries’ Day is the Sandum ‘day of recognition’ held on 22 April to commemorate the birth of Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov, whose pseudonym was Lenin. The holiday commemorates a variety of other revolutionaries, as well, and celebrates many social and political movements in both historical and contemporary periods.

The holiday was celebrated by both the Sôgmô and the Sanôba Consort in addition to Classics Day, a celebration of classical studies at the Sôgmô’s university. The Sôgmô held a symposium on the topic of cultural appropriation, its semantics, and the models of exploitation. Also discussed in conjunction with cultural appropriate were capitalism and socialism with reference to moral justice.

The Sôgmô will conclude this evening with a concert of revolutionary music in his apartment. Preparations, moreover, are already underway for Remembrance Day, held on 9 May.