Emperor Jonathan I yesterday gave Imperial Consent to the Armed Forces Act 2015.
The Prime Minister, Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy – the author of the legislation – released a statement briefly describing the main points of the Act:
“The Armed Forces Act 2015 has codified the rank structure of the Armed Forces in a code similar to that used by the United States Armed Forces, has completely reformed the ranks of the Imperial Air Force, and has established the Joint Administrative Chiefs for the overall administration of the Armed Forces during peacetime.”
The Austenasian Armed Forces (AAF) are comprised of the Austenasian Army, the Imperial Navy, and the Imperial Air Force (IAF). The new legislation also adopted flags for the three branches of the AAF.
The Austenasian Army currently has 27 personnel, the Imperial Navy has 18, and the Imperial Air Force has 6.
This weekend saw the Empire celebrate seven years of independence.
Independence Day took place on Saturday 19th as the third Saturday in September, but the actual seven year anniversary of Austenasia’s foundation was on Sunday 20th.
A military parade was held in New Richmond, and celebrations also took place in Terentia and Thanasia. The occasion was also observed by many of Austenasia’s foreign ambassadors.
Emperor Jonathan I travelled back to Wrythe for the weekend from Roehampton, where he recently started his third and final year of a university course.
As is customary, an honours list was published by the Emperor on Independence Day. Recipients of honours included Queen Carolyn I of Ladonia, who was knighted into the Order of the Bullmastiff, and King Adam I of Überstadt, who was granted the title Duke of Washington.
Meanwhile, Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy published a speech as Prime Minister, which can be read here.
The First Amendment to the Austenasian Constitution of 2011 has now been approved by Parliament and will enter into force on 20 September.
Several amendments to the constitution (explained here) were proposed last month by Emperor Jonathan I, the first time that any change to the constitution has been formally proposed since its adoption in September 2011.
Constitutional amendments require approval in a referendum and the approval of over 80% of the Representatives in Parliament. The Monarch must also give their consent.
A referendum held on 31 August had 89.47% of voters (with a turnout of 77.55%) support the amendments. An Act of Parliament was soon proposed to implement the amendments, to which nine out of the ten Representatives would have to support in order to reach the threshold of over 80%.
As soon as the ninth Representative gave their support last night, the Emperor granted Imperial Consent to the Act, making it law.
Now that Parliament has approved of the amendments, they will come into force at one second past midnight on the morning of Sunday 20th September.
In other news, the Emperor has announced that 13 September was the first day of autumn 2015 in the Austenasian calendar.
Lord Charles Clarke, Duke of Grantabridge was yesterday elected as the first Speaker of the House of Representatives.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives Act 2014 was passed in October last year, but specified that the first holder of this new office would be elected after the next local election.
With the local election that took place on 31 August now over, the Representatives – newly confirmed in their mandate – chose Lord Charles as the first Speaker.
The duties of the Speaker will be to preside over and maintain order of meetings of the House of Representatives, recognising motions and counting votes. To date, this function had been de facto performed by the Monarch or Prime Minister.
Lord Charles Clarke has served as Representative of Lichtenstein since that Town’s foundation.
A referendum held yesterday saw proposed amendments to the Austenasian Constitution of 2011 approved by a majority of 89.47%, while local elections held at the same time saw all incumbent Representatives re-elected.
Out of the 49 subjects eligible to vote in the referendum, 38 did so, a turnout of 77.55%. Three votes (7.89%) were cast in abstention, and only one person (2.63%) voted against the proposed amendments.
The main amendments which had been proposed were explained for the benefit of voters in a YouTube video which can be seen here.
Now that the amendments have been approved by referendum, they must be approved by Parliament. A requirement of over 80% of Representatives to be in favour of any constitutional amendments means that if more than one of Austenasia’s ten Representatives opposes the changes, they will not be able to be passed.
Should Parliament approve the amendments, they will come into force at one second past midnight on the morning of Sunday 20th September.
Alongside the voting for the amendments was voting for Representatives, with local elections taking place at the same time. All the incumbents were re-elected, and under the provisions of an Act of Parliament passed in October last year, the Representatives will shortly choose from amongst themselves a Speaker to help moderate parliamentary proceedings.
Yesterday saw the end of the week-long period during which those wishing to stand for election as Representative at the end of the month could announce that they would be doing so.
In each of the ten Towns of Austenasia, the incumbent Representative or Acting Representative was the only person who announced that they would be standing.
This scenario was not unexpected. On Twitter, Emperor Jonathan I wrote that the nation-wide lack of competition for the office of Representative showed “local elections every five years makes far more sense than every two years”, referring to one of the constitutional amendments that will also be voted on at the end of the month.
As only a single candidate is standing in each Town, voters will have the option to cast an Abstain vote under the terms of an Imperial Edict passed in 2013. Should there be more votes to abstain than for the candidate in any Town, a new vote will be called for that Town in which more people will be encouraged to stand.
The candidates for each Town are as follows:
- Wrythe: HIM Emperor Jonathan I
- Zephyria: Lord Marshal William K., Baron of Zephyria
- Thanasia: HIH Eritoshi, Countess of Memphis
- Palasia: Lord John Gordon, Baron of Zephyria
- Lichtenstein: Lord Charles Clarke, Duke of Grantabridge
- Porthbokon: Lady Evren Filgert, Duchess of Dumnonia
- New Richmond: HIH Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy, Count of Greater Richmond
- Shineshore: Lord Rear Admiral Alastair Cranston, Duke of New Virginia
- Terentia: Lord Vice Admiral Eren (formerly Jacob) Lewis, Baron of Terentia
- Harenfall: Lord Sivert MacLean, Duke of Redcaster
This article is the first in a series of editorials from Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy known as The Lord Admiral’s Corner, where the Prime Minister will give his thoughts and opinions on issues affecting the micronation.org community. The opinions expressed in this series are the personal views of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Austenasian Times or the Austenasian Government.
In the wake of the reforms to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of St. Charlie, a document which I studied in depth during my time as a student in the College of Law at the University of St. Charlie, two editorials have been published by the Occidental Chronicle and the Siroccan Times, respectively. The first covered the problems in the view of the newly inaugurated Chancellor that St. Charlie was established “by Italians and with Italian traditions.” The author, King Adam of Uberstadt (known to many Austenasians as Sir Adam von Friedeck, KVJ KCA), described my views on that situation perfectly. Admittedly, I had some problems with certain points raised in the second editorial, especially the statement that “St. Charlie is not [Eastwood’s] nation.” The notion that a nation, especially a republic, is owned by the man who founded it is a gross misinterpretation of what being a micronationalist is to me. I considered Amager to be my nation, same with Ashukovo and now with Austenasia. Nations such as Austenasia and St. Charlie (and the now-defunct Amager and Ashukovo) aren’t meant to be “his nation.” They’re meant to be like communities, our nations. St. Charlie is Eastwood’s nation, as it was Reinhardt’s, Gallo della Loggia’s, Alvisi’s and Cassidy’s. Eastwood has somehow managed to maintain the confidence of his people for three years now, so to imply that he isn’t an integral St. Charlian because he hasn’t been there as long as Alexander Reinhardt is damn near foolish. I can, however, agree with the view that Eastwood is unrepentantly trampling on St. Charlie’s heritage.
I can relate to Eastwood in many ways. Eastwood and I have both risen from relative obscurity to become the heads of government of two titans in the micronation.org community. When I departed from the MicroWikia community in January 2013 to establish the Federal Republic of Montania, the last thought I – no, anyone – had was that I would one day be the Prime Minister of the Empire of Austenasia. The same can be said of Eastwood when he established the Republic of Atlantis back in 2010. The present situation in St. Charlie reminds me of the last months of the Ashukov Federation in late 2014, when I was serving my second and last term as Prime Minister of the Federation. I was very ambitious; indeed, the Council of Ministers regularly produced posters with slogans such as “this is only the beginning” and “this is our month.” But, as the other members of the government were beginning to focus more on personal life and education, government activity began to stagnate. In a very short period of time, government activity had come to a halt.
This, my friends, is where the similarities between myself and Eastwood end.
I saw that the crippling inactivity was irreparable, and so I resigned as Prime Minister of the Ashukov Federation only halfway through my term. I signed a decree as Governor of Montania transferring what was then known as the City of Saint Josephsburg to the then Dominion of New Richmond. In effect, I had then made the transition from full-time Ashukov to full-time Austenasian.
After my departure from the Ashukov Federation, the remaining prominent Ashukovs decided, rather foolishly, to attempt to save the sinking ship by enacting massive reforms (sound familiar?). Thus, the Ashukov Federation became the Tsardom of Ashukovo, with Emmanuel Tsompanoglou, a man with very little background in Ashukov government (again, sound familiar?), as Tsar, with the powers of head of government and state (see the above). Within months, Ashukovo was dead in the water. The same is happening with the Federal Republic of St. Charlie; the Captain has died, and his underling is foolishly attempting to keep the ship from sinking.
Alexander Reinhardt is Mikhail Gorbachev, and these reforms to the St. Charlian constitutional system are his glasnost and perestroika.
Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy, Count of Greater Richmond