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Topics - Miestră Schivă, UrN

#41
Wittenberg / Referendums for the upcoming election
December 30, 2022, 05:33:30 PM
The SoS may well be taking a well deserved break right now, but as far as I can tell, we'll be voting in referendums on 2 OrgLaw amendments next month, right?

#42
Wittenberg / Independence Day thoughts: The King Must Go
December 26, 2022, 12:16:16 AM
Felică 44-laiset Ziuă dàl Indepenciă a toct i va cüncitaxhiens; es, ben sigur, feliceu Natal a toct qi o celebratent.

The leadership of the Free Democrats of Talossa are taking a well-deserved break at the moment. So I'm filling the gap, lest the Talossan information space this holiday be filled (like all other spaces seem to be at the moment) by the TNC leadership. I want to run through a brief series of observations and arguments relevant to the central theme around which the Free Democrats will be running in next month's election: that is, The King Must Go.

It is necessary, as always, to preface these arguments with a declaration that this is not intended as a personal attack. I've always admired John Woolley, in particular for his role in finally ending King Robert I's autocratic and cultish rule. I encourage all to read my interview with him in Qator Itrìns of October 2005. Brings back fond memories.

But - whether you are a die-hard Republican or a Monarchist stickler - he should not be King any more. Here are the basic reasons which the Free Democrats want you to consider.

  • He is only intermittently active. The King of Talossa should be a continuous presence in the Kingdom, as an inspiration to culture and a figurehead of unity for our national community.
  • He only exercises his constitutional functions rarely, and scarcely ever in a prompt fashion, after much prodding.
  • He is far too closely identified with one political party. A vicious circle of corruption has emerged between the King and the leadership of the TNC, just as it existed with the old RUMP party. The TNC flatters the King and makes political arguments for his panoply of Royal powers - and in return, the King uses those powers to benefit the TNC's agenda, and even worse, to bestow honours and favours on the TNC leadership.

This last is in particular a reason why the King should not be permitted a free hand in choosing his successor. Because - isn't it obvious? - his successor will be the same person as he appointed Regent when he absented himself from Talossa altogether during the 56th Cosă. And for the same reason as the King explicitly gave at the time - because Sir A. Davinescù (as he was at the time) was a devoted defender of the existing status and power of the Monarchy. And now he's a Baron, for "keeping the seat warm" while he was away.

Perhaps many newer citizens might not remember that - that following the election where the Free Democrats got a memorable 99 seats in the Cosă, and the hereditary monarchy was abolished, the King simply walked away from Talossa until the next election, and gave his powers to the biggest supporter of the Monarchy while he was gone. It was a pretty obvious sulk, or "ragequit" as the kids these days say. And there wasn't much we could do about it.

For all Talossans who think that having a King is an important part of Talossan life, we need a better King than this one. We have learned our lesson from the last time we attempted constitutional reform - it's too easy to get bogged down in the precise details of how things should change. Instead, let's learn from how we abolished the hereditary succession - the Free Democrats will introduce a simple amendment to OrgLaw II.3 proclaiming that "The Throne is currently vacant." At that stage, the Uppermost Cort will become a Council of Regency, and we can all discuss how the Throne might be filled.

We can avoid this unpleasantness if the King agrees to abdicate of his own free will during term of the next Cosă, and to discuss with the incoming Ziu majority to form a consensus on his successor. The Free Democrats are putting our cards on the table now, and centring the demand of The King Must Go in this election campaign. John Woolley must be given a decent and honourable retirement - or a chance to serve Talossa in other ways, in culture or even on the Uppermost Cort.

Questions? Comments?
#43
What is the procedure for responding to things put on opponent parties' boards?

The live issue is that I want to respond to the TNC's programme for "Open Government", which I would categorise in four words as "bureaucracy and pointless busywork". But I'm not just going to barge into the TNC's house and start throwing things. Similarly, we would like to hear a TNC response to our own post re: The King Must Go!, but maybe they're being similarly polite.

So the options are:
a) engage on opponent parties' boards, but be polite (because of course they wield the banhammer);
b) put any replies on Witt public boards?
#44
Fiôvâ / [CANDIDATURE] Provincial Túischac'h
December 01, 2022, 10:35:40 PM
In accordance with the Constitution of Fiova s.3 and Standing Orders of the General Assembly s.7, I am very pleased to nominate myself to succeed Gödafrieu Valcádac'h as Túischac'h (president or chair of the General Assembly) of the Free Province of Fiova, in charge of organising votes.

You have seven days to vote PER, CONTRA or AUSTÁNEU on this.
#45
So currently Talossa's social media presence (such as it is) includes Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. All these social media outlets are problematic, for reasons of data privacy and/or being run by reactionary billionaire tyrants who can't be trusted.

So, should Talossa set up a presence on the open-source social media network Mastodon?

The interesting thing is that, given Mastodon's decentralised structure, we would be able to turn our Wordpress setup on talossa.com into a Mastodon "instance" (server).

The Tech PermSec assures me that all this is possible... if we can be bothered.

Comments? Questions?
#46
The way the law is currently written, by the legal argument given by Dama Litz (which honestly I considered persuasive if not definitive), it's impossible to delay a Living Cosa held during the last Clark. Also, by the legal argument given by me, which I do consider definitive, there is nothing suggesting that a vote of the Cosa to hold an LC is legally binding

Also, looking at it, I think the bit about "special PDs" is unconstitutional. You can't add restrictions to the PD power which is granted by the OrgLaw. In any case, a properly worded PD could simply delete this part of the law, if the King went along with it!

So a few suggestions for amendments:
- require the Cosa vote to suggest one or more indicative times/places for the LC, just so the MCs can have a discussion on who might be available when;
- put the responsibility for organising in the hands of the Túischac'h, rather than the Seneschál;
- if no date in the specific month can get a quorum of 1/2 MCs, then the Túischac'h may delay to the next month; and the month after that, if necessary, up to dissolution;
- if the Túischac'h doesn't do so for whatever reason, a quorum of MCs can just declare a Living Cosa "over his head" and elect a new Túischac'h at the Living Cosa;
- make explicit the implication of H.1.1 that an LC can always be held as part of a State Opening of the Cosa during the First Clark without need for a vote to authorise
- delete the stuff about PDs

What do others think?
#47
So El Lexhatx E.7, and in particular 7.4-7.11, needs to be reformed to fix the discrepancy of Mexico. Considering that KR1 himself wrote the basis of the current provincial assignments, and once wrote a manifesto entitled BLOW UP MEXICO SOON!, perhaps it's a psychologically symptomatic omission.

Are there any other amendments to provincial assignment law we'd like to make while we're at it?
#48
(because the SoS excluded this from the current bill to be Clarked)

WHEREAS potential Dandelions should have the right, if their parents/guardians and the Kingdom agree, to participate in Talossan cultural life on a limited basis to see whether citizenship appeals to them;

El Lexhatx E.13 to be replaced by the following text:

QuoteAny child or ward of a Talossan citizen under the age of 14 years may be registered by their Talossan parent or guardian as a "Dandelion-In-Waiting" or Implind, by application to the Secretary of State. To assist them in their future decision as to whether to become Talossan citizens, Implinds may avail themselves of the rights and privileges of prospective citizens, subject to any limits agreed by their Talossan parent or guardian and the Secretary of State.
#49
WHEREAS current Talossan law as embodied in Organic Law X.3 states that all children of Talossan citizens are themselves natural-born Talossan citizens from birth, known as Dandelions;

AND WHEREAS there is a problem whereby the parents of Dandelions renounce or lose their citizenships, and the Kingdom is unable to contact the Dandelions to determine whether they themselves are interested in continuing to be Talossan citizens;

AND WHEREAS there is a broader problem considering the involvement in Talossa of those under the age of 14 and their ability to consent to citizenship;

AND WHEREAS this Bill shall have no direct impact on the citizenship status of existing Dandelions, trapped or otherwise; but, by virtue of the removal of the El Lexhatx E.13.2, shall "strike out" naturally; and yet will, by virtue of this amendment, be able to recover their citizenship at any time they may choose to do so;

AND WHEREAS potential Dandelions should have the right, if their parents/guardians and the Kingdom agree, to participate in Talossan cultural life on a limited basis to see whether citizenship appeals to them;


BE IT ENACTED by the King, Senäts and Cosa of Talossa in Ziu assembled that:

1. Article X Section 3 of the Organic Law shall be amended to read as follows:

QuoteChildren born after 1 January 1989/X, one (or both) of whose biological or adoptive parents is a Talossan citizen at the time of the birth ("Dandelions") shall automatically be granted Talossan citizenship when they register themselves with the Secretary of State on or after their 14th birthday.

2. El Lexhatx E.13 and all its subsections shall be replaced in their entirety with the following text:

QuoteAny child or ward of a Talossan citizen under the age of 14 years may be registered by their Talossan parent or guardian as a "Dandelion-In-Waiting" or Implind, by application to the Secretary of State. To assist them in their future decision as to whether to become Talossan citizens, Implinds may avail themselves of the rights and privileges of prospective citizens, subject to any limits agreed by their Talossan parent or guardian and the Secretary of State.
#50
Change OrgLaw X.3 to read:

QuoteChildren born after 1 January 1989/X, one (or both) of whose biological or adoptive parents is a Talossan citizen at the time of the birth ("Dandelions") shall automatically be granted Talossan citizenship when they register themselves with the Secretary of State on or after their 14th birthday.

... and delete El Lexhatx E.13.
#51
Fiôvâ / Exodus Day XXV
September 26, 2022, 05:41:19 PM
25 years ago today, the Uppermost Cort of Talossa rejected my application for citizenship, on the instigation of King Robert I, who correctly intuited that I would be a political thorn in his side.

That led to sympathy renunciations; the creation of the Free Commonwealth of Penguinea; the descent of KR1 into paranoid quasi-fascist isolationism, whereby he tried to make it illegal for Talossans to even talk to Penguineans; and the febrile atmosphere whereby he ended up turning on former allies like Tamorán dal Navâ or Tomás Garicéir for being insufficiently hateful; leading to the National Schism, the foundation of the Republic, and the process that led towards the more-or-less-democratic more-or-less-constitutional monarchy we have today.

What can I say except, you're welcome  8)
#52
Fiôvâ / [CANDIDATURE] Provincial Secretary of State
September 21, 2022, 07:30:15 PM
In accordance with the Constitution of Fiova s.9 and Standing Orders of the General Assembly s.7, I am very pleased to nominate @Bråneu Excelsio to succeed me as Secretary of State of the Free Province of Fiova.

You have seven days to vote PER, CONTRA or AUSTÁNEU on this.
#53
Under El Lexhátx C.1.1, as Minister of Technology, I recommend to the King that @Lüc da Schir be appointed to the following role:


Permanent Secretary in the Office of Backend Admin, Ministry of Technology


FURTHERMORE, I notify the Crown and the Nation that the following terms of contract have been agreed between the Ministry of Technology and the recommended Permanent Secretary:

(i) The Permanent Secretary in the Office of Backend Admin shall be responsible for all back-end maintenance on the Kingdom's National Webspace, including talossa.com and TalossaWiki; including performing system backups when required, assisting in troubleshooting of system errors and any other tasks required by the Ministry of Technology in relation to the ongoing upkeep of the Kingdom's web infrastructure.

(ii) The Permanent Secretary in the Office of Backend Admin shall be responsible for maintaining at all times the passwords to the National Webspace and to the national social media accounts, and granting/removing access to these websites and accounts for the Seneschal, the Minister of STUFF, and such other responsible officials as may be named by the Government, as and when necessary.

(iii) The Permanent Secretary in the Office of Backend Admin shall also take on the role of Wittmeister, responsible for all back-end maintenance of Wittenberg as described in El Lexhatx J, under the direction of the Chancery.
#54
Wittenberg / [STUFF] Passing on the torch
September 20, 2022, 05:23:53 PM
Estimats cüncitaxhiens!

When the current Government was formed, I didn't particular want to take on the triple burden of Justice, STUFF and Technology. But the labour shortage among the Coalition parties was of such an extent that I had to. Thankfully Senator Plätschisch at least stepped in to make sure that I didn't have to be Seneschal as well.

My priorities as Minister of STUFF were:
  • We will issue physical ID cards for those who successfully pass the Talossan Civics Test (to be conducted in an automatic online format).
  • We will return to active production of Talossaware, including national flags of all sizes, passports, and lapel pins.
  • We will organise a campaign to bring TalossaWiki up to date.
  • We will simplify and update the content of the National Webspace.

I have achieved 3 out of 4 of those goals to my own satisfaction. The subject of Talossaware was left in the hands of my Deputy, Mic'haglh Autofíl, who did such a great job getting ID cards organised. The ongoing duties of STUFF are to maintain the content of the National Website, and to administer our social media. I have to admit that these are areas in which I am plumb out of energy and enthusiasm. To give an example; we removed the menus leading to many of the "informational" pages on talossa.com because the "iframe"-based technology which mirrored information from TalossaWiki had broken. Lüc da Schir has now fixed that. But that means it is now my responsibility to figure out how - or whether - to restore those pages. And I'm fresh out of ideas.

I feel the time is right to enact the content/admin split which was always envisaged when we split the Ministry of Technology from the Ministry of STUFF last year. To be precise: I announce my intention to resign as Minister of STUFF, and to recommend to the Seneschal to name Mic'haglh Autofíl as my replacement. I am happy to retain my other portfolios of Technology and Justice.

As to Technology, as many have heard me say before, I'm no tech expert, and I hope to be able to name a Permanent Secretary with more skills in that area sometime soon. The "Permanent Secretary" system - which allows those with the skills to do the work without having political responsibility, in consultation with elected politicians who set policy and answer the Terps - is one of the best reforms in Talossan history, IMHO, and is criminally underused at the moment.

Grült méirçi.
#55
WHEREAS it is part of the incumbent Government's programme to simplify legislation and "cut red and green tape" where-ever practical;

AND WHEREAS certain inefficiencies and dead-ends were revealed in the Kingdom's budgeting process due to the recent unavailability of the Burgermeister of Internal Revenue;

AND WHEREAS a read-through of the appropriate legislation suggested other fixes for readability and sense, in particular separating out the functions of the Royal Treasury from the Ministry of Finance;


BE IT ENACTED by the King, Cosa and Senäts of Talossa in Ziu assembled that:

1. The following new paragraphs shall be added to the end of El Lexhatx C.1.5:

Quote1.5.5. audit the reported financial condition of His Majesty's investments at any time.

1.5.6. provide, upon request of the Minister of Finance and any other time stated in law, a Financial Report containing the following information:
1.5.6.1. the amount, location, liquidity, and availability of all funds held by or for the Royal Treasury,
1.5.6.2. a detailed list of all changes in the account balances of the Royal Treasury since the last Report,
1.5.6.3. a balance sheet which clearly lists all expenses linking them to the relative sheet items in the budget bills approved in the Cosa,
1.5.6.4. the total amount of louise and postal items in circulation;

1.5.7. All accounts and other monies held by the Royal Treasury shall be held in the name of both the King and the Burgermeister, in such a way that the King shall be able to perform the functions of the Burgermeister in case of the Burgermeister's absence, on his own initiative or upon request of the Minister of Finance.

2. El Lexhatx D.2.8.1 is amended to read in its entirety (all subsections to be deleted):

QuoteThe Ministrà dal Finançù (Ministry of Finance) is responsible for setting and implementing the economic policies of the Kingdom, for drawing up the national Budget, and directing the Burgermeister of Inland Revenue as to the investment of that portion of the Royal Treasury set aside by said Budget.

3. In El Lexhatx D.2.8.2.4, the misspelled word "demonination" shall be correctly spelled as "denomination".

4. El Lexhatx D.2.8.2.8 is deleted, as contradicting El Lexhatx D.2.8.1.

5. El Lexhatx D.2.8.2.9 is deleted, its provisions being reinstated in the new El Lexhatx C.1.5.5.

6. El Lexhatx D.2.8.2.10 is deleted, as redundant and repeating provisions contained in El Lexhatx D.2.8.3.

7. El Lexhatx D.2.8.3.1 is amended to read:

Quote2.8.3.1. a Financial Report as provided in El Lexhatx C.1.5.6;

8. The following new subsection shall be added to El Lexhatx D.2.8.4:

Quote2.8.4.1 The Ziu hereby authorizes the annual and ongoing expenditure of 60 louis by the Burgermeister of Internal Revenue for the specific and sole purpose of paying for the annual domain name registration of talossa.com and for associated webhosting services as selected by the Seneschal or their designated representative.  All payments made under direction of this authority should be reported as according to normal procedure by the Burgermeister.

9. The existing paragraph, currently duplicatively numbered El Lexhatx D.2.8.9, which reads:

QuoteThe Finance Minister shall create a Register of Talossan Enterprises, available to all Talossan citizens. Any Talossan who produces goods and services, whether commercially or as a hobby, may provide a description, no longer than 100 words, of their enterprise together with their contact details, for the purposes of advertisement and information. An enterprise shall be removed from the register at the request of the registrant; or by a determination by the Finance Minister that the enterprise is no longer active, or not of a character with which the Kingdom of Talossa wishes to be associated. Such determinations shall be subject to judicial review.

shall be renumbered D.2.8.10, and amended to read:

QuoteThe Finance Minister shall create a Register of Talossan Enterprises, available to all Talossan citizens. Any Talossan who produces goods and services, whether commercially or as a hobby, may provide a description, no longer than 100 words, of their enterprise together with their contact details, for the purposes of advertisement and information.An enterprise shall be removed from the register at the request of the registrant, or by a determination by the Finance Minister that the enterprise is either no longer active or not of a character with which the Kingdom of Talossa wishes to be associated. Such determinations shall be subject to judicial review.
#57
Wittenberg / [STUFF] Talossaware programme
September 06, 2022, 03:23:30 PM
The Government in its Coalition Agreement committed to "return to active production of Talossaware, including national flags of all sizes, passports, and lapel pins."

The Ministry of STUFF is hereby seeking expressions of interest for people who wish to produce Talossaware, on how to get Official State Seal of Approval, and also from potential consumers on what kind of Talossaware they would be most interested in buying. Let me know.
#58
El Glheþ Talossan / Resources on source languages
September 01, 2022, 04:03:04 PM
We all know that KR1 borrowed promiscuously from all the major Romance languages (and others) when creating the Talossan lexicon, but he also seems to have concentrated on three minor Romance source languages: Occitan/Provençal, Romansh, and Western Lombard.

my question is: does anyone have any better online resources for these than Wikipedia?
#59
WHEREAS it is the policy of the incumbent Government to promote live interactions between Talossans, via technological means where necessary or appropriate;

AND WHEREAS heavens knows how long it has been since the last Living Cosa, i.e. a real-time meeting of our legislature;

AND WHEREAS the Ministry of Technology has got tentative support from the Chairs of both Houses of the Ziu for the concept of a Living Cosa with Senäts participation through teleconferencing technology, and an offer from the Mençéi to organise the technological aspect of this;

AND WHEREAS this seems to be the procedure as outlined in OrgLaw IV.11 and El Lexhatx H.20;


BE IT ENACTED BY THE COSA OF TALOSSA that a Living Cosa will be held, via teleconferencing, during the month of November this year.
#60
The Government's Programme has stated that "we will work with SIGN to create new Talossan language learning materials and to create both translated and original literature." Yesterday, in my capacity as Deputy Minister of Culture for Language Shenanigans, I talked to the SIGN leader about how we might start the process of building "Talossan 101" materials for people who're just absolute newcomers to language learning.

We agreed that the best thing we could think of was to revise the existing "master document" for the current iteration of our national language, Las Recomendăs - not for content, but for making it easy to understand for beginners. Obviously neither cxhn. Tafial nor I are the right people to do this ourselves, as "language nerds" who can tell a verb mood from a verb tense and an enclitic pronoun from an emphatic pronoun. If we want to get the broad masses of the Kingdom interested in learning, we need to find out ways to express this in "normal human being" language.

So what I am suggesting is: everyone with an interest in learning Talossan, and in particular those new to language learning or linguistics jargon, please read through Las Recomendăs and tell us - what is confusing for you? what do you need explained in words of one syllable?

¿Toct clar?