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The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
01-31-2013, 09:08 AM
Post: #11
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
January 25th 7570

Andersson opened another session of Förbundstinget. Almost everyone was present, including the MPs from Ådalen. On the agenda was their set of demands about secession from Vittmark. Everyone had the opportunity to read it, so the introduction of the proposals by the representatives from Iunsala was a yawning experience in itself, but the lack of booing and hissing meant that this was a serious matter.

Chancellor av Lårsten had the opportunity to reply as representative from the execitive. Her reply was quite compact.
"The federal government would like to advise strongly against the proposals made by the representatives from Iunsala Förbund. They are in violation with the Treaty of Nisipari and the provisional constitution. The cabinet is unanimously against it. The house of lords is not open for discussion on the matter. It is practically impossible to execute any of the proposals. Thank you, mr chairman."

Protocol stated that the leader of the largest party now could respond, in this case Arold Gertson of De Lidh, himself a member of the noble Av Månsta family.
"It is with greatest interest that De Lidh has studied the proposals made by our colleagues from Ådalen. Unlike the cabinet, we are very tempted to give Ådahl what he wants and get rid of that cross-patch for all eternity."
All hell broke loose in parliament now, since De Lidh and Iunsala almost had a majority. If the wrong MP was in the bathroom at the time of voting...

"HOWEVER..." Gertson continued, "however... we have to deal with some matters that have been settled when Vittmark was formed. We... yes we... returned Ådalen to its original, pre-Three Ways Conflict borders. Göran Ådahl can not take with him something that he has been given in custody in good faith, it wasn't his to begin with. If Iunsala Förbund is willing to return to the pre-existing borders, then you will have our support."

In the meantime, Alnarp of the Loyalists was writing his own proposal, making a handwritten copy and gave it to Sörmarkspartiet's Rågersson.
"If you agree, then write some copies as well so we can hand it out when it's my turn."
Rågersson was still writing with his other party members when Alnarp approached the speaker's desk.

"Of course... the Loyalist Party will never support a secession from the federation. So I don't have to spen a lot of time building up an argumentation. I wanted to address De Lidh instead. There is something in their approach we like. We have therefore formulated the following motion, which we like to bring to a vote right away."

Loyalists and the other southerners started handing out the handwritten proposals, which suggested to move Ryttsadel Stift's authority from Ådalen to a federal territory. Ryttsadel was already occupied by federal forces, since it was a crucial railway junction on the line between the south and the coast.

"We second the motion," yelled Rågersson while he was handing over the paperwork to Av Lårsten and chairman Andersson. The latter was looking a bit confused, not knowing what kind of routines to apply to this turn of events. He looked for eye contact with his party leader, who held his hands horizontally above each other, a signal that stated 'wait'.

"We will take up this motion after we have made a full round about Iunsala Förbund's original proposals."

So after half an hour of more debating, it was Iunsala Förbund's turn to answer the replies to their proposal.
"Mr. chairman, we would like to have some more time to make some amendments to our proposal. This requires a discussion with our colleagues from De Lidh. We would like to suggest to return to this matter tomorrow morning."

Andersson looked around.
"Anyone opposed to this? Then we will continue on this matter tomorrow 0900."
A slight tap with the stone sphere concluded that bit. Some MPs were already preparing to leave the plenary session.

"Then we move on to the proposal now numbered 70-T0231-L as made by herr Alnarp of the Loyalists and seconded by herr Rågersson of Sörmarkspartiet."
"De Lidh is ready to take a vote on the matter," Gertson stated.
Everyone returned to their seats now. This was far from over. Most MPs understood which game was played here and were curious to see where it would end.

Another short round through the different political factions was made, where all but one of the faction leaders indicated that they were going to support the motion. So with 18 votes against and 9 who abstained, there was a large enough majority to implement the motion even on an unwilling member state. Protocol now stated that Chancellor av Lårsten would have the final word.

"The internal borders of Vittmark are written in stone. Only if all parties involved, alterations are possible. Like we saw in Sörmark. So usually, I would have to say that the cabinet will take notice of the motion would not execute it. Like many of the crazy proposals we have received from this parliament. However, the severity of the matter and the size of the majority requires that we'll have to send this proposal to the House of Lords. I therefore ask you if it's OK if the cabinet returns with an implementation plan after that procedure has been carried out."

The political statement towards Ådalen couldn't have been more clear: if you continue on this path, we're going to nibble on your borders until you only have your own back yard left.

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
07-11-2014, 02:39 PM
Post: #12
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
By-elections can be considered a routine in the Federal Parlaiment. MPs get appointed through national elections in each member state, and each state sets its own terms and conditions for these elections. As a result, there are never general elections in Vittmark, only by-elections.

As scheduled in 7568, Fjällsta Stift, Kletudde, Kram and Liden will have to organize new elections before December 7572. The first three are just a formality, with all 7 representatives getting re-elected. But the situation in Liden is more precarious.

In "March", Liden military supported the attempted coup-d'état against Queen Anna. After 3 (Orkanan) months of diplomatic and political squirmishes, the federal authorities started to implement the democratically decided changes within the military structure of Liden, by occupying the naval base of Tammerköping in "August" 7572. A week later Queen Anna demanded Furst Magnus of Liden to get sacked by his own council, which didn't happen. Östen Karlsson av Månsta Lundén has challenged his uncle Magnus for the throne in public.

But the military activities of the federal forces have changed the political landscape in Liden. One third of the Liden Navy is now operating under federal command, after one commander voluntarily swicthed sides. The other part is sitting idle in the two remaining naval bases due to fuel shortages. Federal forces have set up shop in strategic places, usually with local consent, in order to control the distribution of coal. Most of these places have changed allegiance from Magnus to Östen. Other areas that have turned their backs on Magnus are suffering immensely, like the workers' quarters in industrial cities, not the least the ones in the capital of Månsta.

The bottom line is, that it's a mess in Liden. And in this mess, the elections for the 25 MPs of Liden has to take place. At the moment 20 of them are affiliated with De Lidh, the party of the ruling class in Liden, which forms the largest party faction within parliament. 2 more have recently gone over to the Lundén Alliance, the political vehicle of the challenger Östen.

Some background on the Liden elections: it has a first-past-the-post system in the 22 hundreds that form this member state, as well as 3 city districts (Waldemarsborg, Tammerköping, Månsta) which are taken outside of the hundred system. Voting districts have been changed after 5 independant members originally were voted in. Furst Magnus wants all 25 allocated seats filled with De Lidh supporters and the borders have been changed in order to gain majorities as good as everywhere.

People vote in the hundred where they are registered, which means that votes from emigrants living in the south will have to get carried over the the respective hundreds, as well as those of the miltary serving outside their own hundred. One can imagine that these "travelling votes" can be tempered with.

Question number two is, who will be able to vote? Rebellious areas within the large cities are partially locked off, and it's easy to deny anyone carrying the wrong last name (referring to a stim in a rebel area) to vote based on some administrative technicality. The same applies to candidates, in many hundreds independant candidates and those from the opposing Lundén Alliance have been denied to participate.

Also, as in any other democracy, it is not only a matter of how people vote, but who is counting the votes. The federal government has sent a massive amount of people to the polling stations in order to see to that everything is going according to Liden's own laws. These observers are toothless tigers though, the federal government can not challenge the election results as Liden is announcing them.

AFter this long introduction, an even longer list of election results:

Candidates from De Lidh were re-elected in 9 mixed rural/urban hundreds: Bottmars Härad - Flataklocken Härad - Indals Fögderi - Klingsta Härad - Leringen Härad - Liunga Fögderi - Matfors Härad - Myckeldalen Härad - Wiwsta Fögderi.
De Lidh also got re-elected in 3 more urbanized hundreds: Stöde och Björkhammar Härad – Halles Härad – Månsta Stad. The latter saw a drop of polling presence from 84% in 7568 to 45% in 7572. Hallesiö and Björkhammar both are naval twons, BTW...
This means that De Lidh loses 8 seats in total!

The challengers from Lundéns Alliance won seats in 8 hundreds: in urban Båholmarnas Härad, Almundaryds Härad, Rännas Härad and the hundred surrounding Tammerköping (Tammerland Härad) they gained seats from De Lidh. Even in more rural regions like Turunda and the largely rearranged hundred Trosa-Handen-Fitta Fögderi Lundén took seats directly from De Lidh. In Trällemo and Tammerköping Lundén won seats over incumbent independant MPs on paper, in reality the same candidates were re-elected but under a different banner.

In Ullinge Storhärad, the incumbent Independant candidate has allied itself with Öppen Lista and was re-elected.
In Waldemarsborg Stad, a similar thing happened with an independant who changed to Loialitet, Queen Anna's support party.
Wittnesbord och Malmfors Härad saw a bitter fight between candidates from De Lidh and Lundén, where surprisingly an Independant gathered the most votes and took over from De Lidh.
A similar thing happened in Storholmen, a rearranged hundred where voter turnout dropped below 60% since the candidate from Lundén was denied participating, which resulted in an Independant taking over the seat from De Lidh.
Only in Fållhornbygdens Härad the sitting Independant MP was re-elected as independant.

De Lidh still is the largest faction in federal parliament with 22 MPs, but will likely loose more when Mivö will have its by-election next year.

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
01-27-2015, 12:05 PM
Post: #13
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Jan 2nd, 7574RH

With the ratification of the new constitution now completed, a complete gearwork of cogwheels shifted into action. The federal cabinet had presented its resignation to the queen. She accepted it but had asked them to stay in function until a replacement would be appointed. And this is where the federal parliament had to pick up its new role.

Parliament would have to appoint a First Chancellor, who would get the task of building a new executive government with enough legislative backing. As indicated by the "code of conduct", it is up to the largest faction within parliament to come with a candidate.

De Lidh still is the largest faction, even though this political vehicle of the overthrown Av Månsta clan is now a headless body. It seems that this group hadn't thought through the repercussions of the new responsbilities, since they put Arild Gertsson av Månsta forward as candidate. If they thought that a candidate from the largest group simply would get awarded with this task, they were brought back to reality after a rejection vote by 33 against 60 with 3 abstainees.

According to the code, it is now up to the second largest faction to come with a proposal. Both Iunsala Förbund and Haga Framtid asked for a short recess, trying to adapt their strategies to this first test of the new routines. Iunsala tried to waive its right at this moment, but when it became clear that there would not be a second round, they entered Chancellor Liljeroth. He was voted out by 26 against 38 with 52 abstainees.

Then Loialitet and Sörmarkspartiet asked for a short break, in order to come with a joint candidate. Loialitet surprised everyone by proposing Queen Anna av Kulla as First Chancellor.
Urban Rågersson of Sörmarkspartiet added that her task only would be to build a new government, not to take part in it after installation. This was not according to the code of conduct, but on the other hand, parliament was free to set up its own set of rules.

Queen Anna av Kulla however wasn't directly elected, gaining support of 38 versus 36 with 24 abstainees, therefore lacking a majority. Then, in a bizar political move, Öppen Lista also proposed Queen Anna and urged those who who would abstain from voting to leave the assembly. After that, Queen Anna was appointed with a support of a quorum majority of 38 versus 36.

After lunch she addressed the federal parliament.
"Under the rules of the new constitution, this assembly has chosen to stick to the old ways. That is of course the assembly's prerogative. But it will not save the representatives from the responsibilities they now have. I will meet with each of the faction leaders individually tomorrow morning. Each group will have to formulate what it wants to accomplish the coming five years. Then I will invite to a joint meeting based on the commonalities of the ambitions. The representatives will have to negotiate their own program. Based on that, I will start looking for the most suitable candidates for executing this program. Let me assure this assembly that the process will be over within a week. I do have other obligations, and this is from now on your obligation."

Anna put her hand on her belly, clearly showing signs of a pregnancy in its final weeks, as a demonstration of her priorities. She actually wasn't planning on any more public appearances since last week, but this playground of political incompetence had urged her to adjust her plans once more.

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
02-06-2015, 10:33 AM
Post: #14
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Jan 3rd 7574

Queen Anna received the leaders of the political factions in order to start gathering information about an executive program for the next cabinet.

First up was De Lidh:
- continuation of investment program for federal railways as infrastructure
- federal legislation about the right to pillarisation / sphere sovereignty for Lidenites outside the member state
- roadmap for ending foreign military presence
- federal taxation "in kind" through allotment system
- the right to apply state taxes on state sponsored infrastructure, like roads, bridges, ports and railways.
More interesting is what they didn't put on the table, like federal military command structures or education.

Next up was Iunsala Förbund:
- continuation of investment program for federal railways as infrastructure
- upgrading of designated lighthouses in ports to stimulate trade and export
- federal taxation "in kind" through allotment system
- secure the right of free association for Ådalians living outside this member state
- expanding the Polytechnical Highschool (which is a university)
- Ending single port policy for foreign trade (multistate agreement)

Third largest party is Framtid, the political vehicle of yet another member state: Hagen.
- continuation of investment program for federal railways as infrastructure
- economic stimulus program for less industrialized areas (which effectively is Hagen, Ådalen, Dunsvik and Laxholmen)
- replacement plan for military equipment, starting with the navy
- monetary federal taxatation to cover the costs for infrastructure, stimulation program and military investments.
- ban on road, rail and port taxation for state financed infrastructure

Loyalty and Sörmarkspartiet showed up with a single "wishlist", clearly stating that if they would be represented in an executive government, that this would be a package deal.
- federal legislation about sick leave and work related accidents to cope with the ever growing amount of employees in companies outside of the traditional stim system.
- compulsory education for children between 6 and 12, based on a partial curriculum for all educational institutes in Vittmark
- import tarriffs to put domestically manufactured goods in a more competetive situation
- legislation about voluntary insurance for workers who fall outside the traditional stim system, such an insurance would however be compulsory for employers at large companies.
- strictly federal command structure for military
- investment plan for Sörmark, Kram and Kletudde, which are the poorest and least productive regions of Vittmark.
- banking legislation with more strict federal overseeing

Lundéns Allians is the opposing political vehicle from Liden, but with a remarkably similar "wishlist":
- continuation of investment program for federal railways as infrastructure
- sphere sovereignty for all territorial connected citizens outside the main area.
- federal taxation mostly "in kind" through allotment system
- federal chain of command in the military
- replacement of navy vessels

People's Movement had a different ambition:
- federally funded care for permanently injured and temporarily incapacitated workers as an addition to stim / socken applied care, paid for by corporate taxes
- education curriculum, compulsory education combined with hundred, state or federally operated schools
- import tarriffs to stimulate economy and production
- legislation about access to trading facilities (markets, exchanges, ports)
- banking legislation combined with termination of state currencies and other locally issued currencies

The Open List of independant had a more "flat" set of ambitions:
- continuation of railway program as planned, but no elaborations.
- guaranteed and open access to port facilities.
- ban on all road taxes besides federal ones.
- federalization of the electricity works combined with an investment plan.
- formulation of economic development plans for Laxholmen, Dunsvik, Mivö, Kletudde and Kram with federal investment plans.
- Gradual decreasing of foreign military presence

MP's without a party group affiliation were not invited for a similar consultation with Queen Anna. They would get invited for the next round, where Anna would try to present a common denominator. But most likely this would become a discussion about each other's wishes...

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
02-09-2015, 11:43 AM
Post: #15
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Jan 6th

Queen Anna had invited leaders of four factions for a joint session. Representatives from the political vehicles of Ådalen and Hagen / Kötthagen, as well as the Freethinkers from the south and the opposition from Liden. Together they held 57 of the 101 seats in parliament.

"To be completely honest with you," she addressed the MP's, "this constellation is the only one that could form the basis of a solid executive government. De Lidh does not have any regional backing anymore. The Open List is not a movement, but a loose gathering of opinions, and People's Movement isn't popular as a cooperation partner."

Since none of the groups ever had worked in a coalition before, they had to invent the wheel themselves. Queen Anna helped them on their way. She had made a list of issues she expected these factions to be able to agree on, and another list with discussion points on subjects where she had sensed different opinions between the factions.

A hot topic was agthered under the banner of "association rules", or in other words how to regulate residents belonging to a certain member state living in the territory of another state. Ådalen and Liden had brought this up to secure their influence on the new member states of Kram and Kletudde, but preferably also in Sörmark. But when it became obvious that similar rules would apply for members of the non-territorial Fjällsta Stift, then the discussion became more complicated.

Another issue was the federal system of taxation. Until now, the federal government had worked with a more or less voluntary budget. For example, if the federation wanted to enlist 75,000 soldiers, than the member states would answer for their respective share by direct payment: Ådalen would have 20,000 on their payrole. A very complicated process that required a lot of bureaucracy. Additional taxes could be paid in kind, for example a part of the harvest usually is delivered to the Stift, which then reserves a part for the federation. Which meant that there were federal civil servants gathering goods and then selling or redistributing them. Most parties wanted to shift more or less to a monetary system, but that could be difficult to implement in areas with a large informal economy. For example, most members of Fjällsta Stift living in the south were trading goods and services instead of paying for them with money.

Third large theme for debate was how (and where...) to stimulate the local and regional economy. Everyone thought that more money should be spent in their state and no one was willing to cough up the means for investments elsewhere. Liden wanted support for their already strong industrial economy as a basis for further development elsewhere, while the Loyalists wanted to invest more in regions that had fallen behind in order to create a more equal distribution of opportunities.

But the whole idea of formulating a 5 year plan as a basis for the new cabinet was supported by everyone, so the talks would continue.

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
07-18-2015, 07:20 PM
Post: #16
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Federal Parliament, September 7574

"This assembly is now invited to listen to Herr Alnarp on the matter regarding the Treaty of AErilar."
The Loyalist faction leader approached the pulpit.

"Thank you mister chairman, honorable representatives... With regards to the Treaty of AErilar, the Loyalist Party, on behalf of the Sörmark Party as well, is of the opinion that it is highly unfair that those nomads of Aedeland, the apostates of Helreich, the idolators from Auresia, the heathens of Amberia, the infidels of Anat Tahan, the drifters from Anisora and the spiritual wanderers from Hallis, that all of them breath the air that Vind has supplied us with at no cost."

Most MP's were now curious to see how this strange introduction would lead to some argumentation.

"Therefore, last Idundag (OOG that's a one day weekend...) I have conferred with some old comrades at the Stensudde mansion in Sandsala. Herr Ruvertsson was there, senator Fårhaga, commander Blåsvik of the 3rd naval batallion, chancellor Av Lårsten, Senator Fredriksson av Iunsala... some others... Not only Loyalists as you can see. We had some beer, we shoot some deer, we killed some hookers and then we talked about a proposal that we are proud to present to this assembly today."

Alnarp produced a leather bound brown folder, which he miticulously opened. He then showed it to the attendees.

"Honorable representatives, I present you the Treaty of Sandsala. If you'll come closer, you'll see it has been signed by representatives from Dunsvik, Ådalen, Hagen, Kötthagen, Östvallen, Kram, Kletudde, Kopparbruk, Liden, Kulla and Fjällsta Stift. I'll give you the transcript orally:

"Having assembled in Sandsala, and having exchanged their full powers, which were found to be in due and proper form, have, after discussion of the matters before them, agreed to the formulation of the common specific tariff, collected annually, on all the use of air from non signatory states for industrial processes, lighting fires of any kind and breathing in general. The signatory partners see this as a fair compensation for supplying and distributing this precious necessity."

Many MP's started laughing out loud, but it evolved into a thunderous applause from the stands. After a few minutes, Alnarp could continue.

"End of quotation... mister chairman, the Loyalist Party and Sörmarkspartiet would like to enter the Treaty of Sandsala for ratification by this assembly. And with that our point of view regarding AErilar is clear as well. Thank you."

A loud banging on tables and stamping with feet accompanied Alnarps walk back to the benches. Only a few kept quiet.

"The assembly acknowledges Chancellor Kronobäck on behalf of the cabinet to reply."

The foreign chancellor took of his glasses, wiped away some tears with a handkerchief and stood up from behind the bench where the cabinet chancellors usually were seated.

"Hmmm.... I, ehm... Thank you mister chairman. Thank you Herr Alnarp for your.... creative suggestion. As representative of the executive government I do have to point out that there are several practical problems surrounding this proposal. I could ask for some time to sum up the difficult legal aspects of the Loyalist proposal. But maybe I should just leave it at the recommendation of the cabinet not to carry this proposal."


After some more debates, two proposals were agreed upon by Federal Parliament. The first was the specific denial of any legal or financial consequences regarding the Treaty of AErilar, given the fact that 8 nations can not dictate payment terms to non-signatory nations by definition. To underline the amount of absurdity of this treaty, the parliament even approved of the Treaty of Sandsala as proposed by the Loyalists by a whopping 74-26 majority. Only the People's Movement and some independant members opposed it, the latter mainly to avoid ridicule from abroad.

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
10-21-2015, 08:17 AM
Post: #17
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
June 21st 7575

"On the matter of succession to the throne..."
The senate's chairman made sure he had counted correctly.
"... this assembly has decided to support the proposal made by The Crown, the executive cabinet and the federal parliament by 9 against 6 with 1 abstained. I hereby present to you her royal highness crown princess Moa av Blåkulla."

With that, the door opened and a rather frail girl who couldn't even be called a young woman by her physical appearance entered. Moa, Plane's daughter, had just been promoted from regentesse apparent to crown princess. The main difference being that she would become queen if Anna would abdicate or become incapable to govern, instead of keeping the throne warm for Anna's daughter Iduna as a regentesse.

It was now her turn to address the senate, just as she had done before at a cabinet meeting and federal parliament. In all honesty, Moa wasn't looking forward of becoming a queen at all. She was not interested in every day politics, although she had strong opinions about the most important political issues at hand.

"You are my life insurance," Queen Anna had explained her new role.
"Appointing someone as heir apparent who isn't interested in governing is the best way to make sure my successor isn't actively working towards the throne."

There were also more practical reasons. Queen Anna and Palne Kristerson now had two children of their own. One of them might possess the right characteristics to become a great leader. They did not only need time to develop that, but it would be a matter of individual choice as well. That is, as far as individual choices go in an Orkanan society. It was relatively easy to change the line of succession, but for the next 10 years it would be clear to anyone who would be the successor.

With Moa now turning 18, she had made the choice to become her stepmother's life insurance. Queen Anna had landed on the throne unexpectedly but had managed well so far. Many leaders saw this as a sign of Vind making sure the right persons ending up in the right positions, so a proposal to appoint an unprepared 18-year old as successor made sense.

"My lords, my lady..." Moa began her acceptance speech.
"Vind blows princes and princesses from the sky."
That was actually the very same opening line she had used in parliament. But there she had been summoned to give a testimony about her capacities as potential leader before voting. Here in the House of Lords, the tone would have to be different.

She looked down to the paper with her prepared statement, only then realizing she had forgotten to put on her reading glasses. She took them from a tiny purse that was hanging from her left shoulder. Or maybe it was just a spectacle casing disguised as a purse. She put them on, a rather large, round model that made her bright green eyes appear to be even bigger. She looked up, trying to look over it and see some of her audience. She produced half a smile, just the left side of her face, giving her her typical asymmetrical face.

"In parliament there was some concern about wether or not I was prepared for the task at hand."
She adjusted her glasses.
"But as you can see, I came fully prepared today."

In one continuous move she move removed some of the long curled blonde hair ends from her face. Moa hadn't bothered to "tame the beast", as she herself would call her hairstyle. Most women of nobility would not dare to make a public appearance with their hair bound down in some braid, chignon or any updo hairstyle. But Moa wasn't "most women", she prefered her hair to be loose. Which in her case meant long straight blonde hair on her head with curly ends hanging over her shoulders. Or in her face.

The straight hair usually didn't even hide her sticky-out ears, a feature Moa didn't want to hide anyway. Nor did she plaster her freckles under a thick layer of make-up. She used to refer to them as "Vind's facial tattoo", which wasn't entirely true since she had freckles on her arm, shoulders and most of her back as well.

During her acceptance speech, she was carefully aiming her gaze towards Teres Ståhlvik, senator for Kletudde, but to Moa better known as her stepmothers best friend. Well, more than best friend maybe, but at least a familiair face she could use as focal point for her rather dull speech. Moa was nervous as sike for these kinds of events, and while she was struggling through her speech she started to wonder why she had agreed to this in the first place.

"Congratulations, you did really well," Teres told Moa after the session had ended.
"No I didn't. I was nervous, I think I did the entire speech two times because of all the stuttering. It must have shown."
"It did. But that's why most senators want you as successor. They don't want the overconfident well-prepared full-time politician that isn't attached to every day life nor basic human emotions anymore. Fear is your friend, Vind has supplied it to us for a reason."
Teres put her arms around Moa's shoulders and kissed her on the cheek.
"You know your father loves you..."
She then kissed the other cheeks
"... so does Anna..."
And then she put her lips straight unto Moa's
"... and so do I. Please never loose that girlish charm. Your adult self is only two years old, but the child inside you has much more experience."

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
08-24-2017, 01:17 PM (This post was last modified: 08-24-2017 01:22 PM by Pepijn.)
Post: #18
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Östervallen, March 7th 7579

The federal parliament had weekly voting sessions. Most of the issues had been dealt with in committees and subcommittees, gathering comments, amendments and an inventory of support. Those issues were labeled "stone topics", matters that could be finalized by checking if the recommendations of the committees still stood as they were noted in the proposal, then a bang with the round stone on the hardwood block would indicate that the matter had come to a conclusion.

But there are topics that remain a matter of debate. In this case the federal budget allocation for infrastructure. Usually, federal parliament could send a budget proposal back to the cabinet, but there was only a week and a half left before the new year started. It was time to count the heads and make a decision.

An infrastructure budget always is a mixed bag. Not only deciding what has the largest positive effects on society in general, but also balancing investments between the member states. Those two were difficult to combine. Especially in the case of this opinion-splitter, rebuilding some key railways in the state of Kötthagen. Railways had been patched up after the Three Way Conflicts, but those repairs were not meant to last forever. A serious overhaul was long overdue. The cabinet had sent a proposal not including this overhaul. Parliament was leaning towards awarding the investment in 7579, but the parties in favor of it could not agree on where to cut the budget. A stalemate.

"This assembly will now discuss the motion to amend the federal budget on infrastructure for the year 79, a motion entered by the faction of Haga Framtid. First to address the matter is the joint faction of the Loyalists and Sörmarkspartiet."

The chairman handed over the word to the faction leader of the Loyalists. As the biggest faction they were allowed to open the discussion.

"Thank you, mr. chairman. The Loyalists will give the word on this particular issue to misses Yuma Fukai."

Now it became even more interesting for the MP's. Yuma (or Fukai, nobody knew what her first and last name actually were of the two) had been appointed as MP when the Kakuri gained statehood in November 7578. She joined the combined Loyalist - freethinker faction and has always voted with this group without taking too much time to read in on the subjects. And now this rookie was handed the 'first address' on a matter that split parliament about 50-50.

"Not a year has passed since I arrived in Vittmark," she read from her paper. Many MPs spoke with an accent, but this one was new. "I did not know what money was. I only had heard about trains and railways, never saw one. I have never been to Kötthagen. And now I am supposed to convince my fellow MPs to support the cabinet's proposal, to vote no against this motion.

"There is a clear advantage with being new. You have to ask around a lot. Nothing is self explanatory. I don't have a fixed mindset. I can look at everything from a new, fresh perspective. My spirit is light.

"In my home town, we don't sit around and discuss with many words. We tell stories, or even better, we sing them and dance to them. I have been told that this is not the case here. But if I look around me, I see a lot of people just sitting down, not even listening. Those who speak don't tell a story, but just vomit a lot of words. You have too many words.

"I do not understand my colleagues from Haga Framtid who entered the motion. I can only explain with a short story. A story about a beautiful, purple cockatoo. He found a tree with some nice, ripe fruits. That did not happen often, monkeys eat all the fruit. He heard them coming, so he picked the largest piece of fruit he could carry and flew to the next tree.

"This caught the attention of a passing mane wolf. He said 'you are indeed the most beautiful bird I have ever seen, I am sure you can sing as beautiful as you look'. The cuckatoo felt flattered. He did not meet animals who liked his screeching often. So he let out the loudest noise he could make. He dropped the fruit and the mane wolf grabbed it and ran away."

She folded her paper and backed from the speaker's stand.

"Would you remain in place, misses Yuma Fukai? This session is open for interpellation."
An MP of Haga Framtid got up and raised his voice to be heard. Haga Framtid (Future) was the political vehicle of the ruling class of the states of Hagen and Kötthagen.
"Is that all the argumentation the Loyalists have? A tropical cuckatoo? What a waste of time..."

Yuma understood that she was on her own now. A twenty year old Kakuri who hardly could read and write Wortsproke in a pit filled with professional debaters. The only way out was an undiplomatic one.

"Future of Hagen? Why interested in rails to east... Bring iron to Aldsay? The good sir should be more worried about bringing Hagenite rule to Västerhagen again."

Many MP's started to laugh, some started applauding but most were too flabbergasted to make a sound at all.

"And what does my colleague know about Hagen," the MP tried to play the age and race card at the same time.

"Mylord, one in four people is under 25. I am the only one representing them. We have ambitions, ideals, plans for the future. Our spirits are blank. I travelled half the world to live here while mylord might have taken the train to Östvallen once or twice, enjoying lunch, supper and beer. We are not interested in keeping things as they are, always have been. We are interested in Hagen's future. For my friends in Fridas Socken, for example."

"Mr. Chairman, the representative clearly has no idea what she is talking about."
"Still, she has the right to address this assembly. And I did get the story. The purple cuckatoo is Hagen, the mane wolf could be Ådalen or Aedeland, it does not matter for the story. What she is trying to say is that you are being trapped by smoothtalkers. Thereby proving her point that most people here don't listen. If that is all you would like to ask the representative?"

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
01-09-2018, 09:53 PM
Post: #19
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Dec 10, 7579

Larsson Tunn got off the airship. Now he understood what the people briefing him had been trying to tell him about the weather. It was hot.

He addressed the first militiaman he encountered, in this case one peforming border duties on incoming flights.
"I'm on a special mission, sent by the federal government. Would it be possible if someone accompanied me to Arild Fisk."
The militiaman looked up, only half interested, and pointed behind him.
"There's the Residency. Talk to one of the guards there."

A few guards, militiamen and waiting hours later, he finally was let into Arild Fisk's office.
"Herr... Larsson Tunn, if I have been informed correctly. What can we do for you?"
"Herr Fisk, I have special instructions from the federal government on me. I would like to discuss them with his lordship in private."
"That's... unusual. What is so special about these orders that our fellow board members can not be informed as well?"
"They will be informed, but by his lordship."
"Last time a special courier came, he didn't bring any good news."
"Well, it is related to that event."

Arild Fisk didn't like where this was going, but he sent out the rest of the company anyway.
"Lord Fisk," Larsson Tunn began, "I have been sent here as governor of Fisks. Just over a year ago, Fisks got a larger federal involvement, especially in public affairs and land related matters. The federal government is not pleased with how these have been handled over the last year. I have with me the official papers appointing me as governor of Fisks."

"Is this a take-over? Who are you bringing to support that appointment?"
"You, my lord."
Arild Fisk was flabbergasted.
"The very idea of appointing an external governor might be counterproductive. After all, this is Fisks. Things are different here. It is up to his lordship to decide which position I can fill in the executive board. But I have a clear task and mandate to rearrange some matters. Up until now, the alignment of Fisks with the rest of Vittmark has proceeded too slowly. Distance is a factor. I am here to clear that distance. But I am also here to implement federal laws and make sure other legislation gets the proper treatment in the board."

Larsson Tunn handed over the unsigned treaty between Fisks and the Kakuri regarding an exception to the freedom to travel.
"This is such an example. Östervallen understands that Herr Fisk has more important things to do than policies and treaties. Trade deals, operational decisions regarding the merchant fleet, defence against foreign intruders, piracy, illegal practices from other nations. So my task is to streamline public affairs. If we organize this well, this will only benefit Fisks, as a state, as a culture and as a trading power, but even the ruling family."

"I will need some time to go through all of this. But let me be honest, I don't like the idea."
"Herr Fisk, please read carefully. This is not the federal government taking over or outmanoeuvering Fisks board, see it as an impulse to improve the quality of local and state affairs. Being a member of the federation comes with responsibilities. I am here to help out."

"When will Fru Holm return?" Arild Fisk tried to change the subject. Jenita Holm had been identified as a bad influence on Arild Fisk with the habit of gathering financial means that were not supposed to end up with her.

"Fru Holm is charged with unlawful spending of Fisks' assetts. Since The Crown has a majority share in Fisks nowadays, the allegation includes embazzlement of Crown property. She will be trialed by a federal court."
"We have never pressed any charges against Fru Holm."
"And that's one of the reasons why I'm here. People behaving like Fru Holm need to be brought to justice. I know that this is a small community and that you have to play ball with the available players, as the saying goes, but there's a limit to that. Fru Holm's case is to determine if her behavior was beyond that limit."

"I want her returned."
"That is not in my jurisdiction. I am the governor of Fisks, or special federal counsellor, or whatever his lordship wants to put on me as title. But the matter regarding Fru Holm is dealt with by federal judges."

"Kidnapping Fru Holm and liberating two Kakuri tresspassers from our detention, the federals are not making themselves popular here."
"Let me reply with the remark that the feeling is mutual in Östervallen. The Kakuri should never have been detained, let alone the way they were held, it is considered unethical. The woman you apprehended belongs to their ruling faction, the same faction that is affiliated with the crown princess. There were many different ways this could have been dealt with."

"And Östervallen is punishing me by sending you?"
"On the contrary. If Östervallen wanted to punish you, a naval vessel would have appeared in your harbor and would have taken you in custody. Once again... just read through it, but leave this idea that everything federal is evil and out to get you behind you."

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"
01-20-2018, 06:19 PM
Post: #20
RE: The democratic experiment a la Vittmark
Federal parliament's assembly, Dec 16th 7579.

"Next issue on the agenda, the chancellor of federal affairs answering a question from the Moderate Way faction, as signed by representative Fredriksson. The word is yours, 'fru' chancellor."

"Thank you, 'herr ordförande'", Frania av Lårsten started. "Representative Fredriksson wondered why the recent visit from the Kakuri leadership was invited by the crown to use its accommodation, instead of using the nation's own hotel in the capital. The cabinet wonders if this question is a federal matter at all, but the Moderate's faction added potential budget issues for the crown as part of the question. So far, the Kakuri do not have their own representation within the capital. Since the member state is applying a non-monetary economy, there are several obstacles to be overcome before a permanent representation can be established. Until then, the Fjällsta Hotell is functioning as such. With that, the choice of residence is not a federal matter. On the potential budget issue, the presence of two more people at the royal palace for a part of their 5 day stay in Vittmark is so insignificant in relation to the federal budget allocated to the crown, that the cabinet deems the matter negligable to non-existant and therefore up to the palace master to decide upon. Thank you."

"Herr Fredriksson, in reply to the chancellor..."

"Thank you, 'herr ordförande'. Our faction would like to see exact how much this recent visit of a part of the Kakuri leadership has cost our taxpayers. Especially because they don't have a monetary economy, we suspect that these people are relying on federal budget for travel, accommodation and other expenses. That part of our question has not been answered yet and we reserve our opinion on the matter until we are fully informed. Thank you..."

"Noted," the chairman replied. "Anyone else regarding this matter?"
A small, young woman made her way down from the benches, indicating she wanted the word.
"The assembly acknowledges 'fru' Fukai of the Loyalist faction."

"Thank you, 'herr ordförande'. When I went to school, my teacher said 'there are no such things as dumb questions'. I am sure my teacher never met 'herr' Frederiksson..."
Laughter erupted from the benches, curiously enough the loudest laughter came from factions from Iunsala and Lundéns.
"Members of the crown are people, like you and me, with friends, relatives... et cetera. If a friend visits, you invite them in your house, you don't send them to a hotel. It's the Orkanan thing to do."

The cheering had to be ended by the chairman, before Yuma Fukai could continue.
"Members of the royal family have developed a friendship with certain members of the Nokumo Nobono..."

"Wortsproke only!" a different member from the Moderate's faction yelled through the assembly room.
"My colleague the honorable representative from Sörmark," Yuma continued "is wrong... again... Nokumo Nobono is a name, not a word."

Again laughter erupted, but this time the Moderate MP had not anticipated it would die down that quickly.
"... corrected by a slit-eyed whore," he had added audible to everyone in the room.

"Chairman," Yuma continued before the chairman could call for order, "this remark from my honorable colleague is not worth a response."
"To sike it is," the chairman replied. "Representative Enriksson, this language is not tolerated in this assembly. His lordship will receive an official reprimande with withheld payment for this week, if his faction will distantiate itself from his remark."

The faction leader could only keep quiet in order to avoid a larger reprimande.
"And if no one else has anything to add to this matter, I would like to go to the next issue on the agenda..."

"Chairman," Frederiksson interrupted, "the chancellor owes us a reply and we still get a second round of response."
"The chair does not consider this a matter for parliament and your colleague has already used your second round."

VITTMARK:"This mess is a place." --- FISKS:"Fisk you!"

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