Emperor Adam I: Micronations as Rational Actors

Note from the Editor: The following is an opinion piece which may not necessarily reflect the views of the Adammic Express.

micromap
Should the theories of international relations and geopolitics be applied to micronations – and if so, how?

I was recently made aware of the Abeldane Empire’s recent decision to leave the Grand Unified Micronational, something which struck me as inexplicable. Why had Abeldane politicians pushed for such an outcome in the referendum? Analysing the situation objectively, it makes little sense: the GUM does not affect the sovereignty of its member states in any way, nor does it carry with it a harmful reputation (quite the opposite, in fact, considering that Austenasia is a member state). Of course, the positive aspects to GUM membership are slim at the present time, as the organisation is still struggling with inactivity, but at the very least the GUM is still a forum in which micronations can foster positive relations, which Abelden has now isolated itself from.

I have heard it said that the vote was something of an imitation of Brexit, which seems to make sense. However, at least the arguments for Brexit were based on some sort of tangible benefits to leaving (as much as I may personally believe that those reasons were deeply flawed). By leaving the GUM, Abelden will not regain any sovereignty, nor will it save any money or indeed have any kind of economic impact. This has led me to the conclusion that the Abeldane politicians who pushed for a Leave vote did so completely arbitrarily. Although there are few positives to GUM membership, there are clearly no negatives, so based on the net result, rationally the opposite decision should have been made.

Around the same time as this news story broke, my Prime Minister Sir Alex Helliker and the Leader of the Opposition Admiral Ems Simpson were both taking part in a Model UN crisis simulation. In this crisis, the two Adammic politicians assumed the roles of members of the Italian cabinet in 1939, and had to gain an advantage over the UK, France and the Soviet Union in the run-up to the Second World War. In this exercise, it was crucial to take rational decisions, by doing research, gathering intelligence, weighing up pros and cons, and evaluating the probability of success for each option. The interests of virtual Italy were clearly defined and decisions were taken with those interests in mind. It occurred to me how different this was to what had just happened in Abelden. The team had assumed the role of a “rational actor” (or alternatively a “rational agent”), and had to act accordingly.

Abelden’s Leave vote is not an isolated example. Micronationalism, especially in the MicroWiki community, is rife with arbitrary-ness and lacking in rationality. How many times have we seen a country join a federation or empire, only to leave it again a few weeks later? Clearly, both the decision to join and the decision to leave cannot both have been the correct decision – one of them was wrong. Why was the wrong decision not identified beforehand? It’s not as if micronationalism is a particularly complicated business – compared with the vast multi-dimensional web of macronational politics and international relations, it’s like child’s play. Did the people involved not even think, for five minutes, about the implications of these decisions for their interests? Do they even know what their national interests are?

How about another question: does it even matter? Aren’t we just here to have fun? Yes, generally speaking, that is the case. For completely non-serious micronations who are just here to mess about, this stuff doesn’t really matter. However, I do believe that if a micronation wants even an ounce of respect from senior micronationalists and the general public, it has to attempt to behave rationally, especially in the field of foreign policy (domestic policy isn’t so important). My reasoning for this is that it can be extremely frustrating for a serious or semi-serious micronation to conduct diplomacy with an arbitrary nation. If someone comes to me offering their territory to become an Adammic colony, how am I to know that they won’t change their mind six months later and suddenly decide that they want independence, despite the fact that I’ve done almost nothing to infringe on their autonomy? In the space of a year, the territory formerly known as Adammic Columbia, which is now called Hoagland, left Adammia to join the Holy Roman Empire, then re-joined us, then left us again to join Austenasia! All this does is leave me with more legislative paperwork to do. There are even more extreme examples out there: in the past four years or so, the micronation currently known as Breckland has changed its government type no less than twenty times. The fact that we don’t know whether we will be dealing with a liberal democracy or a communist dictatorship in a week’s time is the reason why I have never even entertained the idea of granting diplomatic recognition to Breckland. I understand that Austenasian foreign policy expressly rules out setting up relations with nations that have changed their government type too many times in the past year because of situations like these.

As a micronationalist, you are far more likely to earn the respect of senior members of the community if you behave in a logical, rational manner, as it makes you easier to understand and easier to do business with. A micronation can either be arbitrary in its foreign affairs, or be taken seriously – you cannot have the best of both worlds. A possible solution to this problem for those who want both is to set up two micronations: a “serious” one and a “silly” one which acts more like a sandbox. It’s also worth pointing out that running a micronation seriously can still be just as fun as running a micronation arbitrarily. I can assure readers that the members of my government who took part in the Model UN crisis last weekend thoroughly enjoyed the experience, and the parallels between the crisis simulation and serious micronationalism should be obvious (indeed, we arguably have more in common with the Model UN crowd than we do with the geofiction community).

I’m going to wrap this piece up by talking a bit about what a micronation as a rational actor actually looks like. Firstly, it is important to understand what your interests are – what are your goals as a micronation? For Adammia, the main goal is to gain prestige amongst other micronations and to grow our territory and population; most micronations will have pretty similar goals to these. Every major decision needs to be evaluated in the context of your national interest; this is the basic essence of rational actors. Of course, some entities make better rational actors than others, and the key factor here is knowledge. Better decisions can be made if you understand the underlying theory, and also if you have more research and intelligence relevant to the situation. Adammia is currently trying to improve itself in this area – I am looking at bringing on board some of the people involved in the Model UN exercises as advisors. Virtual Italy performed so well in the crisis simulation because understanding the theory of political science and international relations (especially the field of geopolitics) gives you an advantage, and a number of the team members are Politics and/or IR students at the nearby university. Micronationalists may find it useful to do some cursory reading on Wikipedia on the basics of political science and international relations, whilst taking time to think about how the theory may be different when applied to micronations. Indeed, I believe there is plenty of potential for developing an understanding of micronational PS and IR, which I suspect would be broadly similar to the mainstream theory but with some key differences (perhaps this would be a good topic for discussion within the GUM). Aside from theory, good decision-making also requires a practical understanding of the current situation. Proper record-keeping helps with this, and it is one of the reasons why Adammia maintains extensive archives. MicroWiki itself is also incredibly useful if you need information about another micronation. However, sometimes it will be in a nation’s interests to keep some information secret, whilst it may be in another nation’s interests to obtain that information. Therefore, a basic understanding of intelligence may be useful. Micronations don’t tend to have access to elite hackers or 007-style secret agents, so the main field which is relevant here is human intelligence (HUMINT). Adammia has in the past successfully made classified information which would have been embarrassing to Adammic prestige had it been revealed to the community at the time.

Certainly, I feel that micronationalists have much to learn from our cousins in the Model UN community, and at the end of the day I feel that it is in the interests of all serious micronations to think about how to make more rational decisions.

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Prime Minister & Leader of the Opposition take part in Model UN Crisis Simulation

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – Over the past weekend, the Prime Minister of Adammia, Sir Alex Helliker, and the Leader of the Opposition, Admiral Emily Simpson, have been taking part in a crisis simulation as part of the University of Birmingham International Model United Nations (UBIMUN) conference. Emperor Adam I has endorsed the simulation, saying that it has served as a useful exercise for the Adammic government’s own crisis response readiness, and strongly implying that he himself will be taking part in next year’s crisis.

Helliker and Simpson were recruited by Adammic honourary citizen Alex Read, who had previously been a participant at the 2017 UBIMUN crisis a year ago. In the simulation, the three Adammic citizens took up the roles of members of the Italian cabinet in 1939, where they would be facing off against other world powers in a struggle for dominance in the run-up to World War II. The other “player-controlled” countries were the UK, France and the Soviet Union, whilst countries such as Germany and the USA were controlled by the crisis committee, who ran the simulation. Read’s character was the Marshal of the Italian Army, Helliker was the Admiral of the Italian Navy, and Simpson was the head of intelligence.

The conference included a black-tie charity gala on Friday 2nd February, which was attended by the Emperor and by Sophie Thornton, Dame of the Order of Adammia, as guests alongside the three taking part in the crisis. By this point in the crisis, the delegate playing as Mussolini had arrested Read’s character in the simulation, which caused a great deal of gossip at the gala. Meanwhile, Helliker proceeded to become uncharacteristically inebriated on prosecco, and was seen dancing wildly later in the evening (sadly, we don’t have any photos available of this).

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Adammic representatives at the Model UN gala on Friday. L-R: Prime Minister Sir Alex Helliker; honourary citizen Alex Read; Leader of the Opposition Admiral Ems Simpson; Emperor Adam I

When the simulation resumed on Saturday, Read was lucky enough to have his character released from prison. By the end of the simulation, a number of reports had reached the Office of the Emperor that the Italian cabinet had been performing exceedingly well, having annexed Yugoslavia and much of Egypt and declaring a Second Roman Empire. The Adammic participants were praised by members of the organising committee for their high degree of competency: Helliker was able to effectively remove the British Royal Navy from the Mediterranean, whilst Simpson managed to use the intelligence service to steal the Mona Lisa from France. The Emperor is understood to be very pleased with the work of the Adammic participants, and may be considering further appointments to advisory positions within his private office as a result. Certainly, such exercises are bound to nurture an understanding of how geopolitics involving rational actors works – although, it can be argued that, due to the much lower stakes involved, micronations don’t tend to act rationally most of the time, and are prone to a very high degree of arbitrary behaviour (see, for example, Abelden’s apparently inexplicable recent decision to exit the GUM).

The Emperor has adopted a cropped version of a picture taken at the Charity Gala as his 2018 state photograph. This is Emperor Adam I’s 5th official state photograph.

Civil unrest in Paternia leads to compromise

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – News broke late on the 29th of January that civil unrest had erupted in the province of Paternia. A number of citizens living in the province had reportedly unilaterally declared independence from Adammia, tore up a paper Adammic flag and declared Lizzy Ecart as their leader. On Wednesday the 31st, the Emperor met with the province’s local government (Councilor Ems Simpson and Duke Callum Gurr) to discuss the situation. The local government distanced itself from the independence movement. Central government, meanwhile, was clear that the claim of independence would not be recognised by Adammia, under the terms of the Emergency Situations Act 2014.

The Emperor then met with Ecart at an event organised by the University of Birmingham Conservatives on Thursday 1st of February. There, a compromise was reached under which the upper floors of the house which constitutes Paternia will be granted a very high degree of autonomy under Ecart’s control, separate from the local government of the province. The exact details of this arrangement are yet to be known. More news is expected in the coming weeks. The exact reason behind the civil unrest remains a mystery.

First State Opening of Council in Birmingham takes place, Cabinet appointed

Adam I, Editor

ADAMSVILLE, Greater Tytannia – The new Ruling Council was completed on the 26th of November after the Ordo Vladius agreed to the Office of State’s proposed appointment of Owain Davies as Delegate of the Colonies. Then, on the 3rd of December, the composition of newly-elected Prime Minister Sir Alex Helliker’s Cabinet was announced. With everything now in place, the first State Opening of Council in the Birmingham provinces was scheduled for Tuesday the 5th of December in the Province of Serkatia.

The full composition of the new Council, as announced by His Imperial Majesty the Emperor in his State Opening speech, is as follows:
Councilor of Greater Tytannia: HIM Emperor Adam I (LIB)
Councilor of Serkatia: HG Sir Alex Helliker PM KOV (MOD)
Councilor of Alluria: Sir Jack Sykes KOA (IND)
Councilor of Paternia: HG Admiral Ems Simpson (NUC)
Duke of Greater Tytannia: HG Commodore Sir Joe Daniels KOA (LIB)
Duke of Serkatia: HG Colonel Sir Zak Maguire KOA (MOD)
Duke of Alluria: HG General Sir Luca Panconi DPM KOA (LIB)
Duke of Paternia: HG Callum Gurr (LIB)
Delegate of Abroad Citizens: Asher Bond (IND)
Delegate of the Colonies: Owain Davies (IND)

As we previous speculated, a coalition has been formed between the ruling Moderate Party and the Liberal Party, in order to provide enough Council members to fill a complete Cabinet. The composition of the new Cabinet is as follows:
Prime Minister: HG Sir Alex Helliker PM KOV
Deputy Prime Minister: HG General Sir Luca Panconi DPM KOA
Minister of Finance: Owain Davies
Minister of Foreign Affairs: HIM Emperor Adam I
Minister of Defence: HG Commodore Sir Joe Daniels KOA
Minister of Citizenship & Information: HG Callum Gurr
Minister of National Development: HG Colonel Sir Zak Maguire KOA
It has also been confirmed that, as the leader of the largest party not in government, Admiral Ems Simpson is acting as the Leader of the Opposition.

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HIM the Emperor addresses the State Opening of VI Legislature.

Following the State Opening speech, the Council set about its business for the first meeting of VI Legislature, with both the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition giving brief comments on the prospects of the coming term. The centrepiece of the meeting was the 2017-18 Budget. Standard financial appropriation for the previous financial year had expired at the end of October, with the transitional Cabinet issuing an Emergency Appropriation to extend funding until the end of November. From the five days between then and the State Opening, a government shutdown was in effect, though the effects of this were negligible. As the Cabinet had only just been formed, it did not have a Budget prepared, and so the Council suspended order and worked informally on a simple Budget, with the Government and the Opposition collaborating. The finished document, as moved by the new Minister of Finance, authorises expenditure of £24 to cover the domain costs of the national website, and up to a further £20 for donating to charity. It was passed with 7 votes in favour, no votes against and 2 abstentions, although several votes were given remotely after the meeting, as only 5 members were present at the meeting itself. The Budget did not deal with measures for raising income, and the Council is expected to return to this side of public finance after a few ideas were suggested at the meeting. Though nothing is yet set in stone, the Government appears to be moving towards an annual Contributions payment instead of the old monthly scheme, with a potential lower rate of £3 per year (as opposed to the 50p per month, or £6 per year, under the old regime), which would bring it in line with the membership fees of most student societies at the nearby University of Birmingham. There were also suggestions of providing some sort of reward scheme for citizens who choose not to opt out of the scheme, though it is not yet clear what form this might take. At any rate, even if the Government fails to raise any income at all during this financial year, there are enough reserves left over in the Treasury from the last government to see it through the year without entering debt.

After dealing with the Budget, the Council agreed on a business motion for the following five meetings, handling a total of ten Acts of Council derived from the current party manifestos. This is the first time the Council has scheduled its future business in such a way, but it wasn’t the only first from the Council. If the recent elections set the tone for a new, more engaged Adammic politics, then this was the first time we really got to see it in action. Admiral Simpson appears keen to fulfil her role of holding the government to account, and has already criticised the appointment of Callum Gurr as the Duke of Paternia, on the grounds that he is not a resident of the province, and further that he is a Liberal representative of a province where nobody voted Liberal at the recent election. Meanwhile, Gurr himself raised eyebrows when he questioned his own party’s leadership’s decision to enter coalition with the Moderates without consulting party members such as himself, although his decision to accept a Cabinet position suggests that he does not consider this to be too much of an issue.

The full report of the Council meeting can be read here.

After the Council meeting, the Cabinet met briefly, and mainly discussed foreign affairs issues. The Minister of Foreign Affairs is expected to formally request that Adammia be re-admitted as a full member of the Grand Unified Micronational at some point in the coming days. Furthermore, the government is believed to be considering diplomatic relations with the newly-formed nearby micronation of Wazakhstan, led by UoB fresher Ned Hilton as its Prime Minister. The emergence of Wazakhstan onto the stage has raised the prospect of a so-called “Birmingham Sector” around the areas of Edgbaston and Selly Oak, which would be the first new local sector of the MicroWiki sphere in several years.

The Council is now in its Christmas recess and will convene again in January. At its next meeting, it is expected to discuss the Moderate Party’s General Amendments Act, as part of Prime Minister Helliker’s pledge to reform and improve past legislation, and the Nuclear So-and-so Party’s Human Rights Act. The former will be mostly technical and is not expected to be controversial, and the latter will probably have the broad approval of all parties, although some finer points could be contentious. However, there will be some serious political debate in the near future. The Emperor recently announced that he would again be seeking to have the Empire de-recognise the United States government, this time in response to President Donald Trump retweeting a number of anti-Muslim “Britain First” videos on Twitter. Famously, an Imperial Decree was issued following the US Presidential Election last November which withdrew diplomatic recognition. This caused an uproar amongst Adammia’s right-wing, which saw the ANP challenging the Emperor’s then-seat of Delegate of the Colonies, which he narrowly held on to in a subsequent by-election. Eventually, then-PM Sir Paul McKenna tabled a Council motion to overturn the decree, arguing that it did not respect American democracy, and in a move which was unheard of in the political climate at the time, the Council sided with the PM and against the Emperor, thus restoring diplomatic recognition. Clearly, the Emperor is hoping that the new Council will be less hostile to the measures, but there are signs that this may not be the case – both the PM and the Leader of the Opposition are understood to be opposed to withdrawing recognition. Although the Emperor is understood to have the support of Liberal colleagues such as Gurr, this situation could well turn into the Liberals versus the rest of the Council, and although the Liberals have the most seats, they do not have a majority. Plans to enact the decision by Imperial Decree have seemingly been shelved in order to prevent the potential embarrassment of the decree being overturned a second time, and the Emperor is now expected to propose the move as a private member’s bill at the next meeting, where there could well be a significant debate unlike anything we have seen previously.

In other news, Adammia saw its heaviest snowfall since its foundation over the weekend, with 4-5 inches of snow falling on South Adammia on Sunday. It was in these conditions that the Emperor travelled back to his holiday residence of the Imperial Household in Adamsville, Greater Tytannia, on Monday, with Emperor Mother Jayne and Sir Paul McKenna. Indeed, most members of the government have now gone home for the academic holidays.

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Snowfall in Serkatia.

Adammia FM December 2017 music playlist

Seek wisdom and honour, and long live the Empire!

Helliker leads Moderates back to power and becomes Adammia’s 4th PM

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – The final results of Sunday’s National Election have confirmed that Sir Alex Helliker, the Archduke of South Adammia, has been elected as the fourth Prime Minister of the Empire of Adammia, after winning 39.3% of the popular vote. He is the first Moderate Party Prime Minister since Emperor Mother Jayne Belcher, Adammia’s inaugural PM and the party’s first leader, was defeated by Labour’s Sir Paul McKenna in 2016.

Helliker, with 11 votes, finished ahead of Admiral Ems Simpson of the newly-founded Nuclear So-and-so Party, who received 9 votes or 32.1%. The Liberal Party, who won the last election under their previous leader Prince Jake, slid back into third place as their new leader, General Sir Luca Panconi, received 8 votes or 28.6%.

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Graph of the popular vote.

All three candidates won a majority of votes within their respective home provinces, with over half of Liberal votes coming from Alluria alone. However, what Helliker seems to have managed to do which the other candidates didn’t was achieve a consistent level of support across most of the Empire, beyond his home province. Dearneland and El Grandens were the only subdivisions where Helliker didn’t receive any votes (and El Grandens didn’t cast any votes at all).

Turnout was at a record low for a National Election, at two-thirds of the electorate exactly. However, in absolute terms, this was actually Adammia’s largest ever election, with 28 votes cast. Whilst there were many citizens voting for the first time, especially in Alluria and Paternia, turnout was exceptionally low in Greater Tytannia. Communications difficulties made it difficult to send ballots to some of the citizens there, who might not use the Internet often and would historically have voted in person, which is no longer possible now that the Office of State is operating out of Birmingham, many miles away from Greater Tytannia.

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Graph of election results since 2013.

Helliker’s first decision as Prime Minister will be how to form a Cabinet. In order to get enough members to provide a full Cabinet, and to provide a majority in the Ruling Council, it seems likely that the Moderates will form a coalition with the Liberal Party; such a coalition would control 6 out of 10 Council seats. If this happens, it would leave the Nuclear So-and-so Party as the main opposition party, making Admiral Simpson the Leader of the Opposition.

Seek wisdom and honour, and long live the Empire!

November 2017 Election: Rolling updates

19/11/2017, 12:54 – Polling day for the Empire of Adammia’s sixth National Election has arrived. In a short while, ballots will be sent out to citizens across the Empire. Earlier, the Adammic Express published interviews with Moderate candidate Sir Alex Helliker and Nuclear So-and-so candidate Admiral Ems Simpson; Liberal candidate General Sir Luca Panconi is understood to be running late but we expect to have his answers in soon.

Like last time, we understand that Myway’s citizens voted early, and the count for Myway will be taking place very soon, so stay tuned for the first result of the day probably within the next half an hour.

(here we go again…)

14:26 – We have our first three declarations in: Myway, Dearneland and Kappania. Results were as follows:

MYWAY
Helliker (MOD): 1
Panconi (LIB): 1
Simpson (NUC): 2

DEARNELAND
Helliker (MOD): 0
Panconi (LIB): 0
Simpson (NUC): 1

KAPPANIA
Helliker (MOD): 1
Panconi (LIB): 0
Simpson (NUC): 0

So, the totals as of right now are:
MOD 2
LIB 1
NUC 3

Our initial impressions are that this is a much better start for Simpson than we were expecting. However, it is still very early in the day and the big results are still mostly yet to come in. The ones to watch out for are Alluria, Paternia and the non-territorial citizens, which between them account for around half of Adammia’s population. Meanwhile, the result in the ANP heartland of Kappania suggests that they are backing the Moderates this time, after previously supporting Labour in 2016 and the Liberals earlier this year. In the past, the ANP have been able to swing an election result based on who they support, so this may be seen as a good omen by the Moderates – but Adammia’s population has grown significantly recently, and it remains to be seen whether the small ANP territories still hold much weight compared to the new, larger provinces.

17:06 – After the initial rush of early results, things have now started to slow down. The Office of State delivered ballot papers to Alluria and Paternia around two hours ago and voting is now underway in those provinces. In the past few minutes, we’ve had our fourth declaration of the day come in, this time from the territory of Midgard:

MIDGARD
Helliker (MOD): 1
Panconi (LIB): 0
Simpson (NUC): 0

With this, Helliker draws level with Simpson, whilst Panconi trails behind. However, it is still far too early to write any candidate off. For example, even though Panconi is in last place, he is expected to pick up a lot of votes in his home province of Alluria, so the tables could turn soon after midnight when most subdivisions are expected to declare.

19:10 – In the past few minutes Paternia has become the first province to declare its result:

PATERNIA
Helliker (MOD): 1
Panconi (LIB): 0
Simpson (NUC): 3

Unsurprisingly, a good result for Simpson in her home province. The totals so far are:

MOD 4
LIB 1
NUC 6

At this point in time, votes from around a quarter of Adammic voters have been counted, so there is still a long way to go. However, at this point the Liberals will no doubt be feeling nervous, and will be hoping for a strong result in Panconi’s home province of Alluria to keep them in the game.

23:31 – With just half an hour until polls close, anticipation is building for the final wave of results which will decide the final outcome of this election. A few hours ago, Serkatia declared as follows:

SERKATIA
Helliker (MOD): 2
Panconi (LIB): 1
Simpson (NUC): 0

This brings the totals to:

MOD 6
LIB 2
NUC 6

It therefore appears that we’re moving into the final round of declarations with a level playing field between Helliker and Simpson, with no indication as to who might have an advantage. Panconi still hasn’t made up much ground, but remember that Alluria is expected to turn out well for the Liberals.

20/11/2017, 01:06 – There has been some confusion surrounding the declaration in Alluria, but we do know that the election has a confirmed winner. First, the other declarations:

GREATER TYTANNIA
Helliker (MOD): 1
Panconi (LIB): 0
Simpson (NUC): 0

EL GRANDENS
Helliker (MOD): 0
Panconi (LIB): 0
Simpson (NUC): 0

NON-TERRITORIAL CITIZENS
Helliker (MOD): 2
Panconi (LIB): 1
Simpson (NUC): 2

In Alluria, out of nine votes cast, eight have been verified. The ninth remains unknown to the Office of State due to the fact that the acting returning officer for Alluria has gone to bed. However, since this final ballot will not decide the winner, the Office of State has made the decision to publish a provisional declaration for Alluria, with the final ballot being added in the morning.

ALLURIA (provisional)
Helliker (MOD): 2
Panconi (LIB): 5
Simpson (NUC): 1
(1 ballot not yet counted)

This brings the totals to:
Helliker (MOD): 11
Panconi (LIB): 8
Simpson (NUC): 9

Therefore, we know that Sir Alex Helliker has been elected as Adammia’s fourth Prime Minister, by a margin of between 1 and 3 votes depending on what the final ballot is. Once Alluria issues its final declaration in the morning, we will follow up with the complete breakdown of the final figures. But before we wrap up our rolling coverage, a few comments: the Moderates are back in power with Helliker leading a strong campaign; the Nuclear So-and-so Party, despite being brand new and only having one member, missed out on the premiership by just a handful of votes; and the Liberals, after winning power under Prince Jake just a few months ago, slide back into third place, in an echo of what happened to Labour in that previous August election. The political landscape is transformed – Labour are dead, a new left-wing party has risen to take their place, and there is an independent presence on the new Council which we have also not seen for several years. The manifestos we have seen in this election were vastly more detailed and thought-out than anything we have seen previously, and we also saw social media being used in the campaign for the first time, with Helliker and Simpson both tweeting throughout the day. This campaign has set the tone for the politics of the Second Era, where the historic and notorious Adammic political apathy appears to be a thing of the past.

November 2017 Election: Candidate Interviews

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – The Adammic Express is pleased to publish its traditional candidate interviews for today’s National Election. Included are written interviews with Sir Alex Helliker (Moderate), General Sir Luca Panconi (Liberal) and Admiral Ems Simpson (Nuclear So-and-so).

Interview with His Grace Sir Alex Helliker DPM KOV (MODERATE)

Why should people vote for you to become Prime Minister?

As Prime Minister, I will be doing all that is in my power to ensure that the Empire of Adammia is in a strong position for the term to come. I have been a long time citizen, and as such have great familiarity with Adammia. The same of course could be said of His Imperial Majesty Adam I, however I can bring new ideas to the forefront. My area of study allows for a new perspective that the Imperial Government has not had the tools to adopt.

What is your flagship policy and why do you believe it is important?

Our flagship policy is of course, legal reform. Based on my experience looking through the statutory records, the draftsmanship is inexperienced and often imprecise. With a careful eye and hand, we can improve it. Additionally, our proposal of an Attorney General will do much to ensure that the Emperor is always soundly advised on legal matters.

How would you characterise your political views?

My views are quite central I would say. My interests are in, for the moment, helping the Emperor in his position as chief legislator and leader. I believe that as an Empire, we should for now keep the majority of the power in the hands of the office of the Emperor and try to avoid devolution of power where possible. Rather, we should enable the Emperor to do what they do best – Rule. Make no mistake, I do recognise the importance of the people, and that is why I am proposing the Marriage Act to allow people to be able to express themselves more fully in the Empire.

Any other comments?

I have faith that the Adammic people will make the right choice for them and their country this election, and I hope that they realise that that right choice is the Moderate Party!

Interview with His Grace General Sir Luca Panconi KOA (LIBERAL)

Why should people vote for you to become Prime Minister?

To bring order, balance and prosperity to the realm of Adammia; and to build a better future for our residents.

What is your flagship policy and why do you believe it is important?

Supporting further expansion within the University of Birmingham – we need the manpower to drive our ambitions.

How would you characterise your political views?

Left-wing, socialist and exclusively liberal.

Any other comments?

A vote for me is a vote for a greater Adammia.

Interview with Her Grace Admiral Emily Simpson (NUCLEAR SO-AND-SO)

Why should people vote for you to become Prime Minister?

People should vote for me because the Nuclear So -&-Sos are so much more than focused on defence spending in Adammia. We are a truly international party that aims to improve the life, liberty and welfare of all Adammic citizens, and to expand the empire far beyond our current borders to make our country even more rich and diverse than it currently is. I, as leader am an experienced both in leadership and in politics, through my work in non-Adammic politics such as the Liberal Democrats and also my work in the US Embassy as a “Young Leader”, so you can guarantee a professional and experienced face in Adammia, ready to tackle the political climate.

What is your flagship policy and why do you believe it is important?

In an increasingly global world, it is important that we as a micro-nation are up to the task. As our name might suggest, our flagship policy in the Nuclear So-&-Sos is to arm Adammia with Nuclear Weapons. As a result, we will also aim to join NATO and align our military spending in line with NATO’s requirements to join their alliance, and make Adammia a truly internationalist party.

How would you characterise your political views?

The Nuclear So-&-Sos characterise themselves as left-wing-libertarian party with a liberal internationalist approach to foreign policy. We hope to enshrine our citizens with the freedom and liberty to live their best lives.

Any other comments?

I also condemn Trump’s Muslim Ban, The Wall and would campaign heavily for the United States to reinstate the Trophy Ban and save the elephants.

(ends)

Polls will be open until midnight tonight. We urge all full citizens of the Empire to vote. The page containing rolling updates of results as they come in will be going live shortly. Seek wisdom and honour, and long live the Empire!

Moderate and Nuclear Parties Launch Manifestos

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – Yesterday, the Moderate Party and the Nuclear So-and-so Party both launched their official manifestos for the National Election which is due to be held tomorrow.

Moderate leader Sir Alex Helliker sent a copy of his party’s manifesto to the Adammic Express last night. The party is running on three key policies: legal reform, the introduction of a Marriage Act, and the introduction of Bitcoin as an official currency. Despite the relatively small number of policies, each has been explored and explained in depth, and the manifesto even contains a full foreword written by Helliker, something we haven’t seen a party do until now. The first section, covering legal reform, is broad, and here the Moderates share some ground with the Liberal Party; for example, both parties want to introduce an “Attorney General” role to represent the government in court. The Moderate plan to convert the funds of the Treasury from Pound Sterling to Bitcoin could be a little more controversial. The Emperor has often put his preference for Pound Sterling on record, arguing that it makes transactions with British businesses easier; the Liberals will probably say that Bitcoin is too volatile for the Treasury, and we could already be looking at the kind of legislative battle within the Ruling Council which we never saw at all during the First Era.

Meanwhile, the newly-founded Nuclear So-and-so Party launched its first manifesto in a tweet by party leader Admiral Ems Simpson. The party has endorsed a varied range of often eccentric policies: the flagship proposal is to arm Adammia with tiny nuclear weapons, alluding to the party’s name. Some policies are more realistic: enshrining civil liberties regarding recreational drug use and sex work into law, the creation of an educational programme, and the promotion of the arts. A potential referendum on a new national anthem could raise eyebrows – could this end up as a repeat of when the ANP tried to force a referendum on making a vaporwave song the national anthem in 2016? Hidden at the bottom of the manifesto was a major pledge on constitutional reform – adopting the Additional Member System for voting. They’re not the only party seeking to change the voting system, after the Liberals announced they would be backing AV earlier in the week. A move to AMS would be a much larger leap than AV, and questions would have to be answered about how this would affect the composition of the Ruling Council; if the Nuclear So-and-so Party successfully push through AMS, it would be the biggest constitutional change in Adammia since 2013. Unusual or unrealistic policies aren’t new in Adammia – readers may recall Labour’s “state schools” pledge in the last election. Back then, Sir Paul McKenna identified that policy as serving a rhetorical purpose, and it seems reasonable to assume that this same principle applies to some of the more ambitious Nuclear proposals. Acquiring a nuclear arsenal and joining NATO and the EU can be interpreted as ideological signposts and they tell us what the party’s main values are – clearly internationalist and committed to defence. The overall sense that we get is that the Nuclear So-and-so Party has effectively claimed the Liberal Party’s place as Adammia’s most progressive party, particularly with regards to its focus on civil liberties and feminism, and this could play very well for them.

In other news, the election for the Delegate of Abroad Citizens seat took place on Thursday, which saw Asher Bond elected unopposed as an independent candidate (it is understood that Bond may be awaiting the publication of party manifestos before choosing a party to join). The only remaining local election is for the Delegate of the Colonies seat, which should be taking place at some point in the next few days; the only candidate in this election is independent Owain Davies. Once this is done, the full Ruling Council will be assembled, with the term of VI Legislature expected to start shortly after the National Election.

We understand that there has been some discontent within the province of Paternia after Imperial Decree LIV appointed Callum Gurr as the new Duke of the province. Admiral Simpson – previously Duchess of Paternia, with her title now moved to the territory of Pererria – criticised the decision on Twitter on the grounds that Gurr does not live in the province, and it seems that several Paternian citizens are backing her up. The Emperor defended the move, describing it as “standard procedure”, and saying that it was necessary to appoint a new landed noble following Simpson’s election as Councilor so that she would not hold two seats simultaneously. Although the practice of holding multiple seats was common in Adammia’s past, the Emperor ended it in 2015 when Sir Matthew Foster became Duke of Watertopia. Reportedly, the reason that the seat was given to a non-Paternian stems from the fact that no other Paternians besides Simpson were interested in joining the Ruling Council.

Attention now turns to the National Election, with polls due to open tomorrow afternoon and closing at midnight. Due to the recent complete re-organisation of the Empire and the emergence of new parties and politicians, it is impossible for us to provide a full pre-election analysis, as historical election data is now outdated. However, we believe that all three candidates stand a chance of winning and that the results could once again be very close.

Pre-election interviews with the candidates will be going live shortly. Continuous updates will be provided tomorrow as the results come in. Seek wisdom and honour, and long live the Empire!

Parties gear up for National Election as new Council takes shape

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – After Sunday’s local elections, the political landscape is looking a little different to what we were expecting, but with the National Election only five days away, Adammia’s parties have little time to rest. The big stories to come out of the locals include the surprise election of independent candidate Sir Jack Sykes in Alluria and the apparent death of the Labour Party.

With both Greater Tytannia and Serkatia only being contested by a single party each – Liberal and Moderate respectively – we were looking to Alluria and Paternia to provide a bit more excitement during what has historically been one of the more dull and predictable parts of the Adammic election cycle. By the eve of the local elections, it had become apparent that Paternia would not providing any of this excitement, as a lack of candidates forced the Emperor to ask the province’s Duchess, Admiral Ems Simpson, to contest the seat unopposed. In Alluria, however, we had the opposite story – for the first time in history, a local election was contested by three different candidates. Colonel Sir Zak Maguire stood for the Moderates, Commodore Sir Joe Daniels for the Liberals, and Sir Jack Sykes as an independent candidate. Interestingly, it was Sykes who won with 4 votes, ahead of Maguire and Daniels who gained 2 votes each.

With Paternia apparently providing fewer potential politicians than the Emperor had been expecting, it is understood that he has begun exploring alternative avenues to fill the holes in the new Council, bringing Callum Gurr, the Chair of the University of Birmingham Liberal Democrats society of which the Emperor is the Secretary, on board as the new Duke of Paternia. As unsuccessful election candidates, Maguire and Daniels have also been given seats, as the new Dukes of Serkatia and Greater Tytannia respectively, as part of an Imperial Decree issued earlier this evening. The same decree made Sir Alex Helliker the Archduke of South Adammia, to compensate him for having the Duke of Serkatia title being taken from him.

The state of play as it stands is as follows: the Liberals have 4 seats (The Emperor, General Sir Luca Panconi, Daniels and Gurr), the Moderates have 2 seats (Helliker and Maguire), the Nuclear So-and-so Party 1 seat (Simpson) and Sykes sits as the sole independent member. There are 2 seats remaining to be filled: the Delegate of Abroad Citizens and the Delegate of the Colonies, the two “miscellaneous” seats; the process of filling them is expected to begin on Thursday. Clearly we can see that the Liberals have done well so far, perhaps better than they were expecting, due to the fact that some of their seats were originally expected to be taken by Paternian residents who were not expected to join the Liberals. The Moderates have done okay, with Maguire now on board as the party’s first deputy leader, but they have probably lost out as a result of Paternia’s political apathy; the same can probably be said of the Nuclear So-and-so Party. Particularly dramatic is the failure of the Labour Party to gain any new members in the new provinces – and therefore no seats at all on the new Council so far. The final two seats up for grabs could be vital: if they both go Liberal, a party will have a majority on the Ruling Council for the first time ever; if they both go Nuclear, this new and relatively minor party will be transformed into a major player; if even one of them is taken by a Labour member, this ailing party will be thrown a lifeline. If nobody in or near the new provinces joins Labour soon, the party will find itself in the same situation as the ANP – effectively consigning it to the history books.

There is, of course, a bigger story, and that is the upcoming National Election, which will actually decide who the Prime Minister will be for the coming term. The Liberal Party – traditionally the most formal and organised of Adammia’s parties – kicked of its preparations with a two-day special conference held via Facebook Messenger, starting on Monday and closing on Tuesday. On the first day of the conference, a motion was passed to amend the party’s constitution, firstly removing the one-week conference motion deadline in the interests of flexibility, and secondly allowing for motions of no confidence in party officers. The latter was included as a mechanism to force the party leader Prince Jake to step down; as a resident of the old Yorkshire territories, it is no longer possible for him to participate in Adammic politics, and naturally the Liberals would want a leader who is actually eligible to run for Prime Minister. However, this mechanism turned out not to be necessary, as Prince Jake resigned on Sunday. Therefore, the party conference simply had to elect a new leader on Monday evening, with General Sir Luca Panconi taking up the position unopposed. Then, on Tuesday, the conference approved the new party manifesto for the upcoming election; the manifesto is mostly similar to the one it used in August’s election, but with a few new key policies – namely rejoining the GUM as a full member, changing the voting system from first-past-the-post to alternative vote, and creating non-binary gender alternatives for titles and styles.

The other parties have been a little slower to get started, but we do at least know who their prime-ministerial candidates will be – we understand that the Nuclear So-and-So Party has already nominated Admiral Simpson, with Sir Alex Helliker expecting to follow suit for the Moderates within the next couple of days. There’s still no sign of any manifestos from either of those parties yet, however. At any rate, as with all previous national elections, the Adammic Express intends to conduct written interviews with the candidates, and we expect these to go live the day before the election.

Seek wisdom and honour, and long live the Empire!

Old party leaders begin to step down as new “Nuclear” party joins stage

Adam I, Editor

SERKATIA – With local elections now only two days away, the battle-lines of the new political landscape are starting to take shape. On Wednesday, Deputy Prime Minister Sir Alex Helliker joined the Moderate Party; Emperor Mother Jayne, the party president since she founded it in 2015, stepped down shortly afterwards in favour of him. We now understand that Helliker will likely be the sole candidate in Serkatia. The Liberals are also preparing for a party conference scheduled for Monday, at which they are expected to pass a motion of no confidence in their own leader, the outgoing Prime Minister Prince Jake, if he has not already resigned by then, allowing for a new leader to be elected who is local to the new provinces.

We also warned in our last article to expect the unexpected and that is exactly what’s happened after Minister of Defence Admiral Ems Simpson set up the Nuclear So-and-so Party last night. This new party is supposedly running on a left-wing platform alongside advocating for arming Adammia with nuclear weapons – hence the party’s name. This isn’t the first unusually-named party in Adammia: long-time readers may recall Sir Will McCracken’s now-defunct Imperial Skelton Party, which advocated for “healthy bones and calcium”.

crowdchart
Our interpretation of where the parties now fall on the classic political compass chart.

Assessing the state of play of the political parties after these recent developments, it appears that things are pretty balanced at the minute. Helliker leading the Moderate Party was not an unlikely outcome by any means, and he’s believed to be a confident public speaker which could make him very likely to become the next Prime Minister. However, for now he’s the only Moderate in Birmingham, and he’s going to have to recruit more members in Alluria and/or Paternia if the party wants to do well. The Liberals are in a similar situation: although they have the head-start with General Sir Luca Panconi joining the Emperor to give the party its second Council seat, they’re still fairly low on numbers and will be looking to recruit more, especially in Alluria. Although the new Nuclear So-and-so Party only has one confirmed member so far, it is expecting to build a considerable presence in Paternia, which could establish it as a major player very quickly. Labour, meanwhile, appear to be increasingly in serious trouble. The establishment of the Nuclear party as a rival left-wing party has effectively killed off any chances of Labour getting any traction amongst Paternia’s left-wingers, meaning that their only hope is for someone in Alluria to take on the mantle of the party’s new leader. There is also a substantial right-wing population in Paternia, and a key question yet to be answered is whether or not those people will back Helliker’s centre-right Moderate Party, or strike out on their own.

Things kicked off amongst Alluria’s politicos last night after Sir Alex Hasioszyn (former Director of Communications under Madam Anna Darke’s colonial government) announced his intention to seek the office of Minister of Finance, and launched a “smear campaign” against potential rivals for the Councilor seat for Alluria, specifically Colonel Sir Zak Maguire. Currently, Maguire has not yet announced affiliation to any party or indeed expressed any intention to participate in Adammic politics at all – was Hasioszyn too hasty? That remains to be seen. We also currently don’t know which party Hasioszyn himself intends to join – if he seeks a specific Cabinet role, at some point he’ll have to back a specific party leader, in the hopes that that person becomes Prime Minister.

Speaking of which, as the new party leaders start to step forward, we can begin to speculate who might win the National Election due in 9 days time and become Prime Minister. Currently, we’re expecting that the Moderate and Nuclear So-and-so candidates will be Helliker and Simpson respectively; anything else would require a serious surge in support for another candidate within those parties. Now that we know that Simpson will be leading a new party instead of joining the Liberals, we expect that Panconi will become the new Liberal leader – unless, of course, again, there is an unexpected surge of support for someone else. As we said already, Labour appear to be in trouble and don’t have anyone yet who could be a candidate. However, there is understood to be considerable left-wing support in Alluria which could easily translate into Labour support if someone decides to step up to the plate. Currently, Helliker is our favourite to win, especially if he is backed by other centre-right figures such as known right-winger Maguire (should he decide to get involved) and/or the conservatives of Paternia. Simpson could have an outside chance based on her own Paternia support base, but her chances of success will likely depend on whether or not a Labour movement manages to materialise in Alluria, as this will affect how left-wing votes are distributed. Panconi (or another Liberal leader) could also stand a good chance as a compromise candidate, but it depends how much additional support the Liberals can pick up in Alluria. Hasioszyn will probably end up backing someone who he thinks can make him Minister of Finance – could this be Panconi, or a potential new Labour leader in Alluria?

Clearly, there are many questions yet to be answered, but over the next 48 hours the pieces of the puzzle are expected to come together, so stay tuned. Seek wisdom and honour, and long live the Empire!