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MicroWorld Newsbites – June 2016

GRAND UNIFIED MICRONATIONAL

  • On 4 June, after almost a year as a private venue for professional discussion between politicians and diplomats, the Grand Unified Micronational once more became an intergovernmental organisation, adopting a new Charter. The Empire of Austenasia and many other small nations are once more member states.
  • On 25 June, Co-President Fionnbarra Ó Cathail of Leylandiistan and Gurvata was elected the twenty fourth Chairman of the GUM, beating sole opponent Lord Kit McCarthy by nine votes to one.

KUMANO JIRITSU

  • On 11 June, Prime Minister Hatsu Ryuho reached a unity government agreement with his sister the opposition leader Senator Hatsu Sakura under the supervision of Kumano’s head of state O-Hatsu Kenji-sama, father of the two siblings. The two resolved several political issues and resolved to work together for the country despite their disagreements.

SANDUS

  • On 29 June, the State of Sandus convened a legislative caucus to amend its citizenship laws. The last time a caucus was held was between February and April 2010, with legislative power usually wielded by the Sôgmô (head of state).

ÜBERSTADT

  • The Überstadti navy has been reduced in size to a single ship, with its amphibious landing craft the Bergstrom having been judged beyond repair after being damaged in a gale in August last year. A search for a new amphibious operations vessel is underway.

WILDFLOWER MEADOWS

  • On 16 June, Princess Hannah granted the title Duke of Sweetpea Valley to HIM Emperor Jonathan I. The duchy had formerly been held by the Princess herself.

ZEALANDIA

  • On 24 June, the People’s Electoral Commission revoked the registration of the Moderate Party, claiming that it was not sufficiently active.

Revival of the Grand Unified Micronational underway

15 April 2016 1 comment

The newly adopted logo for the restructured GUM.

Yesterday evening, a quorum was held by the Grand Unified Micronational for the first time since June last year.

For the past ten months, the Grand Unified Micronational (GUM) has functioned as a formal chatroom for heads of state, politicians and diplomats, having been reformed from an increasingly dormant international organisation.

Yesterday, however, Emperor Jonathan I and Lord Kit McCarthy raised the prospect of having the GUM return to being an international organisation for small nations.

With overwhelming support from the chatroom’s members, the Emperor – who is the current Chair of the GUM – called together a quorum, a meeting of delegates which was used to pass motions when the GUM was an organisation.

The members of the chatroom passed a motion agreeing to begin work on drafting a new reformed charter for a restructured GUM, which would learn from the mistakes of the past. Although several microstates and micronations were represented in the quorum, it was agreed that none would be considered member states of a revived GUM organisation until after the new charter was passed.

Although international organisations have recently become increasingly unpopular in the diplomatic community of small nations, there is support for a reformed GUM from a wide range of those in the MicroWiki community, for which the GUM functioned practically as a United Nations equivalent for much of 2009 and 2010.

It is hoped that the restoration of the GUM to an international organisation will help to improve ties between the older and newer members of the MicroWiki community, who are increasingly forming two separate factions according to many observers.

Interview with Lord Kit McCarthy of Amerdansk

Lord Kit McCarthy is Baron and Governor of the newly annexed Austenasian territory of Amerdansk,  and last year founded the RadioMicro media group and the micronation of Mcarthia (his house in Scotland). He is known for his public criticism of Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy – most recently supporting concerns raised over the Prime Minister’s mandate – and is a prominent figure amongst the newer members of the MicroWiki community. The Austenasian Times has conducted an interview with Lord McCarthy:

Tell us a bit about Amerdansk. What’s it like; what interesting features does it have?

Amerdansk is a patch of land next to Mcarthia’s east border, sitting directly north of Government House – indeed, the President’s Office overlooks it. Mcarthia’s two free range chickens are frequently seen there, along with Mcarthia’s two cats.

The land is accessed by a short narrow path through a wooden frame with various plants growing over it.
Much of the territory is actually covered in thick moss, which in summer gets extremely warm. In fact, two years ago, it got so that residents could see a little steam coming off!

Amerdansk: the Territory governed by Lord Kit McCarthy.

Why did you decide to offer Amerdansk to the Empire?

Mcarthia greatly respects the Empire’s position as a community leader, and on our first anniversary we wished to make something of a contribution. Therefore, the Mcarthian Parliament unanimously agreed to cede the land of Amerdansk to the Empire.

We also hoped that after the – ahem – ‘Austenasian Election Affair,’ relations could be improved between the two nations.

There have in the past been tensions between yourself and the Prime Minister, Lord Admiral Kennedy. Can you see this being a problem for your position in the Empire?

I would be lying if I said I approved of all the Prime Minister’s actions, and that is common knowledge. At times, I have found the Prime Minister to be offensive, and believe that some of his actions have been inappropriate for someone of his position.

However, he has been democratically elected, and no matter what issues I may have with him, if the electorate trusts him, I will of course support his position.

I have no desire to fight further, and hope that we can respect each other – accepting, but not dwelling on past events. So long as he is also prepared to accept that, I hope there will not be any further problems between us.

You’ve recently advocated for the Grand Unified Micronational to return to being a full-blown intergovernmental organisation. Could you tell us a bit about your reasons for this, and what you think it would take to be a success?

The GUM was fairly undeniably the most successful of all the micronational organisations, even considering its eventual demise. I have been discussing with a senior member of the community the possibility of the GUM once again becoming active in its previous style.

The community, I have long believed, needs some kind of focal point. Even disasters such as the MNTO brought the community together, and created activity (even if it wasn’t always the activity we wanted…). Despite their bad name, organisations are a good way of encouraging participation in the community, and helping us stay attractive to new and younger members.

I think that with genuine careful planning, and the support of major micronations, the GUM has a hope of becoming a ‘real’ organisation.

It is an unfortunate fact that most, if not all, organised micronational activity does not last forever. I suppose the essential reason for this is that micronationalism is for many a hobby, and is not essential to people’s lives. So what if an organisation collapses? However, this puts many off founding organisations.

We have to accept that there is perfectly good chance that the GUM would not survive again. However, I don’t think this should put us off. If it doesn’t work, it’s not the end of the world. It’ll have given us all something to do!

Any efforts however would face a dilemma – the GUM survived while it did primarily because it was full of extremely experienced, respected nations. However, in my discussions with others, it is clear that many would see a new GUM primarily as a project for newer nations. Concerns have been raised that younger micronationalists have no role model, if you will. People see a need, and I think I agree, for an organisation that would mentor MicroWiki’s younger members, and give them valuable political and professional experience.

But then, there is a problem. If an organisation is focused towards younger nations, many of the more experienced nations might not be so interested in joining. And if we don’t have the experienced members, long term success would prove much harder. A very careful balance would need to be struck.

Absolutely meticulous planning would be required, probably months’ worth, and all of the essential technical and legal infrastructure would have to be in place before the organisation began again. One of the major problems the Nollandish Confederacy suffered was a lack of this. All our activities revolved around self-management because the system wasn’t effectively working when the organisation began. Work was divided into two categories – elections (taking 80-90% of our time), and attempting to pass legislation relating to governance and management. We were inflated by unimaginable amounts of bureaucracy.

What should be happening ideally is that the members of an organisation shouldn’t have to bother with this. Administration should, as much as possible, be taken care of behind the scenes.

We couldn’t afford this in a new organisation. Elections would have to take less than no time, and the Constitution should mean that self-governing legislation shouldn’t be necessary. A new organisation would have to hit the ground running.

What happened with the Confederacy was that a complete lack of anything useful being done meant that no one bothered to even vote on all the pointless legislation. No one cared. What others and myself were trying to do later in the Confederacy’s life was introduce some kind of projects – there was a guide for new micronationalists, for instance, or a Confederal games. It was too late.

A new organisation would have to be kept simple. A simple electoral system would be a key example. I have found that organisation designers are somewhat in awe of very complicated electoral systems that might produce a decent result but are absolutely impossible to run. They were the death of the Confederacy, I am fairly sure.

So then, to sum up (and I apologise for a very long answer): a new organisation would have to have confidence, experienced members, a very wide support base, a balance between providing for experienced members and younger members, extremely careful planning, a pre-prepared infrastructure, and a simple governance system. Heaven knows that’s not all, but it’s a start, and if we can get that, I think we’d have a decent chance.

Thank you for your time.

New territory in Scotland

Amerdansk, the newest Territory of Austenasia.

The Empire of Austenasia has expanded for the second time this year, with the annexation of a small territory in eastern Scotland.

The Territory of Amerdansk, which consists of the 360 square foot garden of a residential property, was annexed by Austenasia last night.

The land had been offered to the Empire by the now Lord Kit McCarthy, a resident of the adjoining house, who has been appointed governor of the territory.

Amerdansk is the sixth Territory of the Empire, and the fourth to be an enclave of Scotland.