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Wittenberg / RIP Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
« on: September 18, 2020, 07:22:06 PM »
Ruth Bader Ginburg, an Associate Justice on the United States Supreme Court, passed away today of cancer. She was 87 and a fierce advocate for women, minorities, queer people, and marginalized groups. She will be missed.

This loss also petrifies many Americans, and we fear that the eventually slip into authoritarian is almost complete. I ask all Talossans to take a moment to consider the amazing accomplishments of one of the world's best jurist, take a moment of respect, and maybe pause the current flamewars waging through Witt for 24 hours as our small but Talossan way of paying respect.

Councilors of the Tenth Grand Session of the Estats Xhenerais of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg:
In my role as Presiding Officer of this tenth Grand Session of the Estats Xehenerias, I decree the following:

Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg compels the Cunstaval to dissolve each Grand Session of the Estats Xhenerais. 

Article III, Section 3 of the Constitution of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg instructs that the Estat Xhenerais is instantly dissolved with those of the national Ziu. 

On or about June 30, 2020, His Majesty Ian Lupul issued the Writ of Dissolution for the 54th Cosa of the Kingdom of Talossa.  Having received no formal dissolution decree from the Cunstaval, it is my view that this tenth Grand Session of the Estats Xhenerais was dissolved by operation of law upon the dissolution of the 54th Cosa of the Kingdom of Talossa.

Accordingly, I issue my resignation as Presiding Officer nunc pro tunc to the dissolution of the tenth Grand Session of the Estats Xhenerais.

In my role as Premier of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg, adhering to the tradition established following the adoption of our Constitution, it falls to me to open the forum in which every citizen of the United Provinces may declare their intent to sit as a Councilor in the Eleventh Grand Session of the Estats Xhenerais.  As set forth in Article III, Section 4, every person seeking such seat must publicly declare the following:

I, [YOUR NAME], hereby claim my right to be seated in the next Grand Session of the Estats Xhenerais.

Only during that period of time in which the national election is taking place.  Hence, this declaration can only be made between July 15, 2020 and August 1, 2020.  Any declaration received before that cannot be counted, although I will reach out to any individual that makes an early declaration to reiterate such on the proper date. PLEASE MAKE ALL DECLARATIONS IN THIS THREAD.

In accord with the national Constitution and codified law, the senatorial seat for the United Provinces shall be decided in this election. Pursuant to the Claiming Our Autonomy Byelaw (see Byelaws 1.1), the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg invoked its organic right to choose a Senator under its own laws and without the aid of the Chancery.  Pursuant to the section 2.1 of the National Senate Election Byelaw, a prospective candidate must openly declare their intention no later than 10 days prior to the end of the last Cosa preceding an election.  On or about June 7, 2020, the Right Honorable Senator Eðo Grischun did so timely declare such intent.  No other person publicly declared their intent.  As such, Senator Grischun shall proceed to election unchallenged. 

Pursuant to Section 2.2 of the National Senate Election Byelaw, all votes for Senator must be made publicly on a sub-forum dedicated to the United Provinces on the national forum.  Thus, PLEASE RECORD YOUR VOTE FOR SENATOR, IF YOU SO CHOOSE, IN THIS THREAD. As previously noted, the votes must be recorded during the period corresponding with the national election.

It has been an honor and privilege to serve all of you, and I look forward to working with all of you and for all of your in the next Estats Xhenerais.

Citizens of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg,

On March 1, 2020, I posted a Notice of Intent to Appoint a Senator, which you can find at https://wittenberg.talossa.com/index.php?topic=154.msg884#msg884

As Premier of the United Provinces, and in accord with Organic Law article III § 7 (former article IV § 10), I appoint @Eðo Grischun to fill the vacant seat of Senator for the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg for the remainder of its term to the fullest extent permitted under the Organic Law.

My congratulations to @Eðo Grischun

On another note, I am excited to have done this under the new Organic Law, which only came into force in the last few days.


Viteu Marcianüs

Vuode / Notice of Intent to Appoint a Senator
« on: March 01, 2020, 10:56:16 AM »
Citizens of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg,

In accord with the proscription in the Organic Law, yesterday I resigned as your Senator on account of my elevation as a Justice to the Uppermost Cort of Talossa.  This tracks with my commitment to retire from public life on the national stage.  However, I intend to continue my services in the Estats Xhenerais and as your Premier. 

As Premier, Org.L.IV.10 requires that I appoint a Senator for the United Provinces to serve the remainder of my term, which expires at the end of the 54th Cosa, within a fortnight of the vacancy (i.e. until March 14, 2020) lest the mandate falls to King John or his appointed Custaval. 

I have informed @Eðo Grischun of my intent to appoint him Senator, which is not all that unexpected.  However, the Rt. Hon. Grischun expressed to me that he needs to wrap up some issues in his role as head of the PNP party in the Cosa.  As such, I am merely stating my intent to appoint the Rt. Hon. Grischun but am not formalizing the appointment quite yet.  I imagine that formal appointment will be made and transmitted to the national government within the next week.

In the interim, I ask all citizens of the United Provinces to come forward and help us figure out what we can do to get you active, to get you wanting and committed to helping the United Provinces, and to ensure that you remain active.  I understand extra-Talossa life happens, but Talossa and the United Provinces will be more fun with your contribution. 

Thank you.


A short time ago, I noticed the citizens of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg that I intended to resign my seat their Senator effective immediately due to my appointment to fill the vacant seat as a Justice to the Uppermost Cort of Talossa. I have transmitted my resignation to King John, the Prime Minister, the Lord President, the Secretary of State, and the Premier of Vuode accordingly. 

Perhaps I did that out of order because I wanted to formally address this Chamber.  I hope the Lord President will afford me some latitude in this one instance and allow me to briefly state the following.

I have enjoyed working with each and every one of you, even when we have disagreed.  I want to acknowledge the hard work of the Lord President.  It should be obvious to all that the Lord President values this Chamber, its work, and its Organic mandate. There are few, in my estimation, that strive to protect an institution in the way that he does, and that is something admirable and should be a lesson to many of us.

I depart with one final observation--we all have personal issues with others, but do not let those personal issues get in the way of your Organic mandate as Senators.  You must continue to listen to ideas, even from those you may personally dislike. You must continue to set aside your egos and vote for the best interests of your constituents and Talossa as a whole.  And you must realize that your commitment to your constituents and Talossa will, at times, be in conflict, and you must balance how you will vote but what will do the overall good. I realize that I have not always lived up to this, but I have, even if not obvious, tried to, notwithstanding my hyperbole.

With that said, thank you all for your hard work, and thank you for keeping the Senate above the partisan fray.


Viteu Marcianus

Citizens of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg,

It has been my distinct pleasure and privilege to serve as your Senator. But, as you know, the Ziu nominated me to fill the vacant seat on the Uppermost Cort.

By operation of law, my appointment occurred when King John did not exercise his veto prior to today. This requires me to resign my seat as your Senator.

In my time as your Senator, I sought to serve everyone in Talossa, and to vote in what I viewed would be the best interests of all of you and for Talossa as a whole. I have no doubt our next Senator will do the same. Of course I will continue to serve the United Provinces on a local level.

With that said, with the posting of this notice, I shall transmit my resignation to the Lord President of the Senate, the Seneschal, the Crown, the Secretary of State, and the Premier of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg.

I have it on good authority that the Premier will appoint my replacement within a few days so that our province will continue to be fully represented in the Senate.

Thank you all for your trust in me as your Senator.

Best Regards,

Viteu Marcianüs

Wittenberg / Judicial Reform of 2020
« on: February 27, 2020, 05:32:18 AM »

I've finished up the Judiciary Amendment of 2020.  Please see the FIRST post at https://wittenberg.talossa.com/index.php?topic=98.msg543#msg543.  Apparently there is 20k character limit on new Witt, so I removed the prior version with strikethrough and posted it below for posterity.

In any event, changes are as follows:
  • All subsections were removed; it still is easy to follow
  • I removed references to 1997 Organic Law because the actual UC will not change so there's continuity
  • Justices will no longer be known as Justices; they will be Judges.  On the federal side in the United States, our lower and intermediate courts use the title Judge, and only the Supreme Court has Justices.  In practice, the titles are somewhat honorific without any distinction as to function.  New York we reverse, our lower and intermediate courts have justices, and our Court of Appeals has Judges.  New York is actually closer to the older approach because Justices were elected and Judges were appointed.  But then again, our family courts, also elected, has Judge.  So my point is, there's no meaningful distinction really.  A quick review at other common-law counties suggests there's different approaches lacking consensus on distinction. In any event, some here don't seem to realize this and think the title "Justice" means something other than it does, so I thought it simpler to remove "Justice" altogether.

Next, I included an accompanying statute that would only come into effect if the amendment is implemented.
  • The statute increases the number of Pusine Judges by two, for a total of five UC Judges, and keeps all present Justices but restyles them as Judges appropriately--continuity achieved
  • The statute abolishes, in its entirety, the Justice of the Peace, which is a decent idea but I think maybe some of us would prefer to avoid
  • The General Cort of Talossa, an inferior nisi prius cort of general jurisdiction and first instance is established in its stead
  • For now, and because a UC panel only requires three judges, a case will be assigned to a UC judge, who will sit as a Magistrate (not a magistrate judge), and who cannot on a panel reviewing an appeal from one of their decisions in that case.  This is somewhat inspired by an old US approach called "riding circuit" (although not a perfect analogy).
  • I added some language to G.14 in that the Clerk is now required to inform the Seneshchal if a Judge/Magistrate fails to respond to an assignment or timely issue decisions in a matter. I think this is important so the Government can take appropriate action for missing Judges (there is a provision that the Clerk reaches out to the Magistrate and has discretion to determine if this is warranted, like if the Magistrate says, "hey sorry work was crazy this last week, will post tomorrow" then it can be overlooked, but if the Magistrate never responds and the Clerk has to reassign the matter, they must inform the Senechshal.
  • Finally, I added a new section to el Lex (Ian is going to maim me to the fullest extent permitted by the law I'm sure) under G.15, which calls for the UC to either set up its own official reporter or ask the Scribe or Government to do it. However, because the General Cort is a statutory cort created by the Ziu, it can dictate who does it. I'm leaving it up to the Scribe or Government for now.

As many of you know, it's an open question how much time I have left in the Senate (or if I'm not going anywhere at all!), so i intend to Clark this for March, even if the Fates determine that I cannot vote for it in March.  If, however, I am appointed, I will need to resign and adhere to my commitment to retire from public/political life.  I do hope, in that event, to see this adopted and ratified.

The Hopper / Judiciary Amendment of 2020
« on: January 12, 2020, 12:31:05 PM »
FINAL VERSION BEFORE HOPPER. Please Note I have added statutory language that would come into effect upon implementation.

I posted this in old Witt at http://talossa.proboards.com/thread/13839/judiciary-amendment-2020?page=1&scrollTo=169020.

I have updated the numbering scheme to follow Section 3 of Article VIII of the 2017 Org Law per Senator Platschisch's concern. 


Confirmation is not a foregoing conclusion. But if it is, this may be the final bill I try to pass. I tried to fix many of the issues others had with the Judiciary Reform Amendment.

The Judiciary Amendment of 2020 and the Judiciary Statute of 2020

WHEREAS, in July 2019, the Ziu of the Kingdom of Talossa adopted the Still Into This Amendment in the third Clark (“53RZ18”) over the objections of the King;

WHEREAS the Chancery submitted 53RZ18 as Referendum 1 in the General Election for the 54th Cosa;

WHEREAS the people ratified 53RZ18, with the resultant promulgation by the King occurring by operation of law;

WHEREAS the following shall shall supplant that part of the 2017 Organic Law within two months of adoption by the Ziu and ratification by referendum;

WHEREAS 53RZ18 was a step towards cleaning up the Organic Law and did not seek to substantively modify the organs of the State;

WHEREAS the Ziu recognizes that the Judiciary of the Kingdom of Talossa must be adaptable and responsive to the dynamic needs of Talossa;

WHEREAS continuity in and of law is tantamount to an effective judiciary;

WHEREAS it would be helpful to include the appropriate statutory legislation to be implemented upon adoption of the following;

THEREFORE, the Ziu amends the 2017 Organic Law by deleting in whole Article VIII: The Courts as contained in 53RZ18 and adopted by the people;

BE IT FURTHER KNOWN, upon the foregoing being deleted, the Ziu and the people of Talosssa adopt as Article VIII: The Courts the following:

The Courts

Section 1.

The judicial power of the Kingdom of Talossa shall be vested in one Cort pü Inalt, in English the Uppermost Cort, and in such inferior courts as the Ziu may from time to time ordain and establish.

Section 2.

The judicial authority of the Cort pü Inalt shall extend to all matters, in law and equity, arising out of a case or controversy; and in all matters affecting ambassadors, public ministers, the State of the Kingdom of Talossa (including its organs), and a Province or other subdivision recognized by this Organic Law, the Cort pü Inalt shall have original jurisdiction. In all other cases, the Cort pü Inalt shall have appellate jurisdiction both as to law and fact over all inferior corts established by the Ziu. Nothing stated herein shall limit the authority of the Cort pü Inalt from remanding a matter to which the Cort pü Inalt has original jurisdiction to an inferior cort as it deems necessary.

Section 3.

The Cort pü Inalt shall consist of a permanent seat designated as Senior Judge, and two permanent seats designated as Puisne Judge. The Judges shall be ordered according to their seniority on the Cort pü Inalt, with the senior most Judge occupying the seat of Senior Judge.

The Ziu may enlarge the number of seats designated Puisne Judge to no more than eight, and may decrease the number of seats designated Puisne Judge to no less than two, provided that, in addition to the requirements for other legislation, two-thirds of the Cosa and a majority of the Senate support modification in two consecutive Cosas.

Neither a reigning King or his or her Consort, nor a Regent during his or her regency, nor the Secretary of State, nor the Seneschal, nor any other member of the Cabinet shall be a Judge of the Cort pü Inalt.

Section 4.

Any member of the Ziu may nominate a person to an open seat on the Cort pü Inalt. The nominee shall be approved by two-thirds support in the Cosa and majority support in the Senate. Upon such approval, the King shall appoint the nominee as a Judge of Cort pü Inalt.

If the King shall decline to appoint a nominee, then, upon approval by two-thirds support of the Cosa and majority support in the Senate, the nominee shall be considered appointed.

Every Judge of the Cort pü Inalt shall be subject to a re-appointment in intervals of five years, measured from when their initial appointment. These intervals may be increased two to no more than 10 years provided that any legislation retroactively applies to all sitting members of the Cort pü Inalt and is supported by two-thirds of the Cosa and a majority of the Senate in two consecutive Cosas.
Unless otherwise set by law, re-appointment shall be deemed automatic if no member of the Ziu has requested a re-appointment vote in the Cosa immediately preceding the expiration of the Judge's term; and re-appointment shall only require a simple majority of each house in the Ziu. The Ziu may modify the foregoing provided the requirements of re-appointment never exceed that for appointment.

Section 5.

A Judge shall remain on the Cort pü Inalt for the duration of their term, until they choose to retire, or, as prescribed by law, until such time as the Ziu shall remove him or her from their seat or until he or she can no longer perform their duties on account of incapacitation.
In the event that a sitting Judge of the Cort pü Inalt acts in a manner that offends the Ziu in the Judge's official and individual capacity, or is found guilty or has pleaded guilty to a crime in Talossa, a member of the Ziu may move for a Notice of Reprimand, which shall set forth an individual charge with the stated punishment contained therein, which shall not exceed removal from his or her seat as Judge.
To impose the sanction of removal, a Notice of Reprimand must receive, in addition to requirements of other legislation, two-thirds support in the Cosa and majority support in the Senate.

Section 6.

Until such time as inferior corts are established, a Judge may sit as a nisi prius cort in all civil and criminal matters.

No decision or order issued by an inferior cort or nisi prius cort shall bind a coordinate cort.

The decisions or orders of the Cort pü Inalt shall bind all lower corts according to the doctrine of stare decisis provided that that the panel was composed of no less than three Judges after necessary recusal. The Cort pü Inalt may, as it deems appropriate, issue decisions or orders that are non-binding provided that it explicitly states that intention in the decision or order.

A nisi prius cort or an inferior cort deviating from binding precedent must state so with clarity and refer the matter for appellate review.
Notwithstanding any contrary proscription, the King, the Secretary of State, or the Senechal may refer an issue to the Cort pü Inalt for an advisory opinion provided that any such panel reviewing the position is composed of no less than three Judges after any necessary recusal, there lacks a live case or controversy that would otherwise determine the issue, and there is a reasonably need for resolution of the question.

A matter arising under the Covenants of Rights and Freedoms is appealable as of right to the Cort pü Inalt. In all other instances, the Cort pü Inalt may not be compelled to exercise its appellate authority. However, when declining to do so, the Cort pü Inalt must issue an order declaring such, and no such declaration shall be deemed as the Cort pü Inalt adopting or setting as binding precedent the appealed from decision or order.

The Cort pü Inalt, and any other cort existing under this article, shall interpret all matters through the lens of the Covenants of Rights and Freedoms.

Any Judge that is a named party in a matter shall recuse himself or herself from hearing any and all parts of the matter.

BE IT FURTHER KNOWN that, only upon the foregoing amendment coming into effect, and if shall fail, this part shall be stricken nunc pro tunc, el Lexhatx shall be amended as follows;

BE IT FURTHER KNOWN that the Scribe is authorized to modify the following sections or subsection identifiers to cure any inconsistency upon the statute coming into effect, and may fix any accents, diaeresis, or like marks for consistency with Talossan nomenclature and the Talossan language;

BE IT FURTHER KNOWN that upon implementation of the foregoing, all Justices presently on the Cort pü Inalt shall hold their seats but restyled as Judge with the appropriate designation;

UPON THE FOREGOING CONDITIONS, BE IT ENACTED that Section 13 of Article G of el Lexhatx is stricken in its entirety.

All references to “Justice of the Peace” not specifically identified in this statute but contained elsewhere in el Lexhatx shall be stricken.

All references to "Justice" or "Justices" as it relates to a member of the Cort pü Inalt contained in el Lexhatx not specifically identified in this below shall be replaced with "Judge" or "Judges." 

The following shall be added to el Lexhatx under Article G, Section 13:

13.1. The Ziu enlarges the number of Pusine Judges by two in accord with Section 3 of Article VIII of the Organic Law.

13.2. The Ziu establishes the General Cort of Talossa, which shall be an inferior nisi prius cort, cort of first instance, and of general jurisdiction consistent with Article VIII of the Organic Law.

13.2.1. In accord with Section 6 of Article VIII of the Organic Law, any action commenced in the General Cort of Talossa shall be heard by a single Judge of the Cort pü Inalt.   

13.2.2. A Judge presiding over a matter in the General Cort of Talossa shall be styled as "Magistrate" for the purposes of that proceeding.

13.2.3. Unless an appeal lies as of right, an aggrieved party to an action may seek leave to appeal any determination of the General Cort to the Cort pü Inalt.

13.2.4. A Magistrate may not sit as a Judge on the Cort pü Inalt for any appeal related to a proceeding over which they presided as a a magistrate. 

13.2.5. A Magistrate must recuse themselves from a matter upon a real or apparent conflict of interest.

Section 14 of Article G of el Lexhatx is amended as follows:

14.1.1. The Secretary of State shall accept service of any complaints or claims to the Cort pü Înalt or General Cort of Talossa on behalf of all citizens. The Secretary of State shall email notice of said complaints or claims to the concerned citizen, and affirm to the Cort that they did so on that date (the "date of service").

14.1.2 If either party in a case before the Cort fails to respond to such a notice as specified in section 14.1.1 within 60 days of the date of service, the Cort may, upon a motion by the adverse party, enter default judgement against the nonappearing party. Default judgment can only be entered for a period of three months after default. A default order may be vacated, upon good cause shown, within three months after it was entered, by motion of the aggrieved party.

14.2. If a Judge fails to respond to the assignment of a Case by the Clerk of Corts, pursuant to section 5.7 of this article, within 14 days, then the Clerk of Corts shall assign the case to another Judge, and inform the Senechal of the Judge's failure to appear.

14.3. A Judge may request a matter be transferred to another Judge for any reason.  If that request be for any other purpose than a conflict of interest, and the Judge has not presided over any substantive part of the proceeding as a Magistrate, he or she shall be from the proscription enumerated in section 13.2.4 of this article. 

14.4. If a Magistrate fails to address a filing from either party within 14 days of receipt, then the Clerk of Corts shall inquire as to the status of the Magistrate, and may appropriately reassign the matter to another Judge if warranted.  If a Magistrate fails to respond to a Clerk’s inquiry within 14 days, the Clerk shall reassign the matter and inform the Seneschal of the Magistrate's failure to appear.

The following shall be added as Section 15 of Article G of el Lexhatx

15.1.1. All final decisions or those interlocutory orders must be codified in an official reporter.

15.1.2.  The Cort pü Inalt may request that the Government or Scribe maintain official reporters of decisions on behalf of all Talossan Corts, or it may direct the Clerk of Corts to do so on its behalf. If the Cort pü Inalt shall request the Government or Scribe to maintain official reporters, then the Cort pü Inalt must designate, in the decision, whether it shall be deemed binding, and if so, it shall be reported in an official reporter entitled "Cort pü Inalt" and abbreviated to "CPI" in citations.  All decisions of the Cort pü Inalt designated nonbinding shall be reported in an official reporter entitled "Cort pü Inalt Apeindix" and abbrivated to "CPIA" in citations. All final determinations of the General Cort shall be published in an official reporter entitled "General Cort" and abbreviated to "GC" by the Scribe or an individual designated by the Government in the same fashion as described in G.  Nonfinal or interlocutory determinations that impact the rights of a party must also be reported in the GC reporter.  All other determinations need not be reported in the GC reported unless so designated by the General Cort.  Determinations not contained in the GC reporter shall be styled as General Cort Slip Opinions and must be made publicly available on a State-run website in consecutive order by date with an affixed number with an appropriate pin cite every 200 words, for ease of reference, that shall be listed as follows: Case Name, Year GC Slip Op NUMBER, *Pin (Full Date, Magistrate's surname, M.) (e.g. Doe v Smith, 2020 GC Slip Op 001, *1 (27 February 2020, Hershewolfschechterdorfers, M.) If the Scribe or the appointed Government Ministry determines any aforementioned volume becomes lengthy, a subsequent volume shall be created with the appropriate cardinal prefixed prior to the reporter. The Cort pü Inalt may direct the Clerk of the Corts to normalize case captions according to rules it may set forth, which shall then be used in any reporter. The Cort pü Inalt may publish an official style manual enumerating proper citations for any source, which shall be followed by all parties filing documents with any national Talossan cort.

*MODIFIED 02/27/2020 at 6:10 a.m. EST – removed subsections and fixed some typos.  Added accompanying statute

(see post below for old version)

Vuode / Estats Xhenerais - States General - Grand Session X
« on: December 09, 2019, 04:45:12 PM »
As you all know, I was the only person to claim their seat in the Estats Xhenerais. 

I stated elsewhere that I will not govern alone and will submit and take any submission from a citizen of the United Provinces into debate.  New laws will only be adopted if there is a majority of an informal vote of participants.   I explained this here: http://talossa.proboards.com/thread/13748/declaration-estats-xhenerais-grand-session?page=1&scrollTo=168443

However, article III, §§ 8 and 9 of the Constitution of the United Provinces of Vuode and Dandenburg mandate that a Premier and a Presiding Office be chosen from within the Estates Xhenerais.  There is no bar against one person holding both positions unless I am missing something.  Given that no other person can hold these seats, by operation of law, I assume both. :-/

That said, what legislation do we want to see adopted?

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