King announces interim cabinet

ROSEWOOD – On Monday night, 21 June, King Adam I announced his cabinet’s new composition in Parliament’s online venue. The appointees will serve on an interim basis until the next meeting of Parliament votes on whether to confirm them.

The King’s appointments are as follows:

  • Himself continuing his present roles as Secretary of the Treasury and Minister for the Economy;
  • Crown Prince Aaron assuming the role of Minister for the Environment;
  • The Duchess of Bellevue continuing as Minister for Culture.

The King acknowledged the current cabinet’s domination by the Royal Family and expressed an intent to diversify its membership in the coming year. He invited citizens to suggest any offices that they feel should be created and noted his interest in finding another person to serve as economy minister.

The economy minister role holds heightened significance during Überstadt’s ongoing negotiations with Sandus on the governance of the Common Economy they share. By treaty, the minister has a seat on the Commission for the Common Economy, which governs the association.

Parliament passes Renewal Act, giving government clean slate

“Obsolete” laws repealed, Parliament moved to semiannual meetings, Social System citizens granted equal rights

SEATTLE – As part of King Adam I’s agenda to reinvigorate Überstadt’s social life and government, Parliament approved this last Sunday a constitutional bill that repeals most existing law and changes how the legislature operates.

The Renewal Act, written and sponsored by the King, repeals all prior Acts of Parliament except the Constitution Act, which is the foundation of Überstadt’s uncodified constitution. The new statute’s full title refers to “repealing obsolete legislation.”

Much of the act changes the rules governing Parliament. Most significantly, the body must meet at least twice a year in synchronous meetings instead of existing as an online chat or forum. Parliament remains a direct assembly of Überstadti citizens, so there are provisions for absentee participation in debate and voting.

The act also states that citizens of Überstadt through the Social System partnership with Sandus share equal rights of citizenship. This establishes reciprocity of “social citizen” rights between the two states, as Überstadti citizens have long been able to vote and hold high office in Sandus.

Under the new law, the King must present Parliament with a comprehensive bill on citizenship within three months. In the interim, he may grant naturalization at his pleasure.

The King also gains certain powers that he says will allow the government to function fully between meetings of Parliament. During the body’s recesses, he may annex territory and appoint cabinet ministers. These actions still need parliamentary approval, but they are now effective immediately and subject to a confirming vote at the next legislative meeting.

With similar rationale, royal power to declare states of emergency without consulting Parliament is expanded. States of emergency declared by the King may last up to three months before requiring parliamentary approval, lengthened from one week under previous law.

In meetings with cabinet members and political advisors in recent months, the King has emphasized the need for many of these reforms to make Überstadt more engaging for citizens and sustainable. He has indicated his belief that Überstadt’s existing laws were inconsistent and largely irrelevant, necessitating a complete overhaul.

In Parliament, the King also proposed that the change in format for Parliament “will allow Parliament to become a social occasion, perhaps coinciding with major holidays.” This aligns with his stated goal of a more vibrant social and cultural scene in Überstadt.

The expansion of social citizen rights also corresponds to growing collaboration between Überstadt and Sandus, especially ongoing economic integration talks.

King proclaims Year of Independence, Sandum friendship week ahead of Überstadt’s decennial

SEATTLE – King Adam has proclaimed a Year of Independence to celebrate Überstadt’s decennial this Friday, 6 March. He has also joined Sandus in declaring the start of March to be Sandum-Überstadti Friendship Week.

The royal proclamation makes March 2020 through February 2021 a time for “celebrations, special events, and projects of national significance.”

The friendship week was first declared by Sôgmô Gaius Soergel Publicola in anticipation of an official Sandum presence at the Überstadti celebration.

The Royal Family will host an Independence Day celebration in Rosewood this Friday, which will include an official dinner with Sandum council facilitator and foreign minister Artemis Berry. The King is also planning a speech and live discussion with citizens around the world that night, as well as visits to important sites in Überstadti history.

Berry will also join in tours of Seattle and of Western Washington University, where she will begin undergraduate studies this fall.

 

From the King: Überstadt is still here!

Friends, allies, colleagues, well-wishers, and citizens abroad:

I end the Kingdom’s media silence to assure you all that Überstadt is still here. In this message, I will discuss why we have been quiet, our ongoing activities, and our plans for the near future.

Why have we been so quiet?

Last year’s census called into question whether certain people were still legally citizens, which is a serious problem in a direct democracy. Parliament’s activity ceased. Meanwhile, developments in my “civilian” career and living circumstances kept me from devoting much time to governing or maintaining our online presence. Fortunately, a recent judicial decision will allow us to revive our democracy, and I am in a position to give our country the leadership it deserves again.

What we have been doing

Anyone who has been a micronationalist for very long understands that the nation keeps moving even when the state does not. Even though our government idled, our people continued to observe our holidays, fly our flag, and live Überstadti lives. I also had the pleasure of representing the Kingdom at MicroCon 2019, reaffirming relationships with the broader micronational community.

Promises to citizens and friends

To citizens of Überstadt who live outside our borders, I promise that my government will do more to engage you in national life and give you opportunities to contribute to the Kingdom in your own ways.

To our friends in other nations, I promise to resume official communication on issues of shared importance. I believe we become better leaders and creators when we share our undertakings with each other, so I will also make sure to share glimpses of Überstadti life more often.

Überstadt turning 10

Whether citizen or foreign friend, I invite you all to help us celebrate Überstadt’s tenth anniversary, which is on 6 March 2020. My government’s efforts in the coming months will focus on making this a grand celebration of Überstadti culture, industry, and friendship. We are organizing celebrations in Rosewood to be attended by many of our citizens and leaders of allied states, and we intend to create ways for interested people and groups to participate remotely.

I eagerly look forward to further developing the Kingdom and celebrating ten years of the Überstadti state with its citizens and friends!

A R

New trellis for Rosewood’s raspberries

ROSEWOOD – On Thursday evening, workers from horticultural cooperative Rosewood Fruits finished construction of a permanent trellis for Überstadt’s raspberry crop. The new structure will support the plants as they become heavy with summer fruit.

The trellising work began the previous Saturday, with the work being done intermittently until the project’s completion. The structure consists of two vertical posts with crosspieces, with wires running from one end of the hedgerow to the other. Ornamental caps for the posts remain to be installed.

King Adam has led a push for better raspberry-growing practices in the last several months, making the crop central to his agricultural policy after two consecutive years of its being the most productive plant in Überstadt. He oversaw the thinning of the berry patch’s canes in the fall, and has scheduled an application of compost in a bid to produce larger fruit this year.

Below: the new trellis in front of the Royal Residency

trellis.jpg

First census announced

ROSEWOOD – On Monday evening, King Adam announced in a printed statement that Überstadt is to hold its first annual census this month. Citizens will receive census forms on the 11th, and responses will be due the 25th.

Last year’s law on nationality directed that a census occur each year, and made it mandatory for all Überstadtis. Those who do not participate are subject to losing their citizenship. The king emphasized in his statement that the data collected will help the government better serve the people and produce insightful statistics.

The census questionnaire will ask citizens about their languages, religions, levels of education, and other demographic information. According to the king’s office, supplemental questions meant to help the government integrate new citizens will also be included.

During the two weeks of the census, the government will not process naturalization petitions.

From the King: Überstadt at eight

The first Überstadti constitution, signed 6 March 2010, declared that the state it established would be an example of “peace, hope, and brotherly love.” This line gave us the motto we have had for most of our history: Pacem et spem, “peace and hope.” This Independence Day, I wish to reflect on what these words mean at this moment in our nation’s history.

I think that today, Überstadt is more at peace than ever before. I do not mean that we only recently found peace in the community of small nations; we have never been a country that attracts enemies. The sort of peace I see in the Kingdom today might be better described as concord. We are free of major rifts among our people, and have nation-building as a point of consensus.

This was not always so. Like most small nations, our earliest years were considerably more chaotic. We had our share of unnecessary show trials, questionable elections, and politicians whose sole purpose was to destabilize the nation. In the recent past, we found a way to grow and seek new opportunities without threatening stability or sanity. Today, all our citizens agree to key values and participation in our direct democracy. We have diverse citizens with unique interests and insights, all interested in doing something constructive for their nation. We will be able to find special roles for them all. From collegiality, we gain concord.

The achievement of domestic peace is a cause for hope. It means we are free from the turmoil of the past and well-equipped to build a strong nation together. I have faith in the Überstadti people, and affirm my commitment to helping them make this realm something in which they find a reflection of themselves. As Überstadt turns eight, I invite them to define the next eight years.

A R

King opens Parliament, nominates ministers

ROSEWOOD – King Adam gave a speech opening Überstadt’s ninth parliament tonight, announcing his government’s priorities and welcoming new citizens. He then submitted his cabinet nominations for the legislature’s approval.

A major emphasis of the king’s speech (text available here) was building national unity. The government proposes integrating new citizens through actively working to find them roles in national life, as well as through distributing Überstadti flags to citizens free of charge. A system of grants to fund cultural celebrations is also proposed.

Sustainable development was another focus of the speech. The king’s announced program for economic growth and environmental protection largely follows existing precedent, highlighting watershed health and the control of industry-related pollution, with a focus on conservation as a way of preserving indigenous rights. One major policy shift is new support for transferring public-owned economic cooperatives to the control of their workers, similar to Juclandia’s 2013 reforms promoting a socialistic private sector.

For the first time since 2016’s moratorium on welfare and taxes, the government will address the question of public revenue by implementing what the speech described as a “voluntary head tax,” which would recommend a specific level of financial contribution from all citizens. Since this practice would technically be a continuation of the current practice of all-volunteer donations to the treasury, it may move forward without legislation. The king’s speech also endorsed the creation of an online shop for selling Überstadti memorabilia.

Toward the end of his address, Adam turned to national security, declaring that “more must be done to prepare our citizens and infrastructure for emergencies of all sorts.” He proposed using the military as a vehicle for increasing citizens’ preparedness against physical and cyber threats.

After completing the ceremonial speech and seeing it posted to the online venue of Parliament, the king nominated his new cabinet. He seeks to retain himself as environment minister and the Baroness Rosewood as culture minister, appoint citizen William H. economy minister, and himself take charge of the treasury.

King graduates from university

ROSEWOOD – On 16 December, King Adam graduated from Western Washington University magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in History, in a ceremony conferring more than 740 undergraduate and 40 postgraduate degrees. His parents were in attendance.

While at the university, the King earned numerous honors. He became a member of three honor societies, appeared three times of the President’s List for perfect quarterly grade point averages, and by faculty invitation, presented during the university’s Scholars Week honoring undergraduate research. He also delivered a paper at this year’s Northwest regional conference of Phi Alpha Theta, the history honor society in the United States. His senior thesis, “Joining the ‘Empire of the Whites’: Fort Nisqually’s Families and American Colonization, 1846-1860,” received a grade of A and was praised by the curator of Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, who added the paper to the museum’s research collection. In his final quarter of studies, he completed and received an A in a graduate history and methods course, taken by faculty invitation. He completed an academic minor in political science with a perfect grade point average. By a quirk of grade calculation, his graduation honors were announced at the commencement ceremony as cum laude, but upgraded after final scores for this quarter were tallied.

As a student, the King was involved in various extracurricular activities. He served one academic year as secretary, and another as president, of an environmental education club, and spent two years on the university’s Model United Nations team. In this latter capacity, he attended eight Model United Nations conferences and crisis simulations, winning several awards. He began staffing conferences this past spring. Additionally, he taught an adult Sunday school class for over a year and participated in political campaigns on campus and in the surrounding community.

The King began attending Western Washington as a junior in January 2016, after completing general education requirements at a Washington state community college in June 2014 and working in food service, academic tutoring, and political campaigning until resuming his studies. Measured in credits earned, he completed a quarter of his postsecondary education while in high school, having attended the community college part-time his final two years of compulsory schooling.

Crown Prince Aaron resigns posts, commences mission

ROSEWOOD – On Tuesday night, Crown Prince Aaron resigned command of His Majesty’s Navy and leadership of the Treasury, prior to the Wednesday start of his missionary service.

As previously reported, King Adam is to take custody of the Treasury, and intends to offer naval command to a retired American general. Other high-level shakeups are anticipated in the next month, with the King’s office indicating its intention to open a new session of Parliament.

Crown Prince Aaron will spend about six weeks in the Missionary Training Center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints before proceeding to his two-year proselytizing assignment in the vicinity of Raleigh, North Carolina.