• RE: François Le Berre for Premier Commissioner | February 2021

    RALLY NO. 1: Kiel, Union of Syndicates

    (The crowd cheers as Le Berre emerges from the darkness into the spotlight. He waves, smiling at all)

    Welcome, welcome to all! Living in a broom closet was fine, but I'm happier to be free, so to speak, again! But on to the point.

    Our country, our homeland has been racked by terror for so long. Many of us can remember 1993; more the horrors of Areai's regime, of the evil of the People's Assemblies. And yet we remain free, in many ways, although we continue to face great adversity.

    Our creativity is unbridled; our labor is liberated - an expression of our desires, our powerful imaginations, not those of an elite! It is this freedom, so rare in our world, in our Europe, that is at the core of our nation, of our very souls. And it is this freedom I seek to protect and to give to all Europeans!

    No longer shall we be besieged by foreign interests wanting to turn our country into a cheap source of labor! No longer shall the people of Europe be oppressed by the elite!

    For the first time in their lives they will be able to freely enjoy the freedoms we have, and many more! For the first time, they shall be able to celebrate their culture without fear of repercussion; for the first time, their labor shall not be viewed as disposable but as being important, a very part of themselves and of greater society!

    The small business, the cooperative, the union, the worker, the entrepreneur; all these sources of creativity, shall be upheld and represented in our European Union for the very first time!

    So too shall be the nation, the linguistic group, and the cultural group, those that give to us a core part of our very identity and those that those above us wish to eliminate!

    Each person will be able to celebrate who they are in all ways! None shall be oppressed; all will be heard!

    (Le Berre pauses as the crowd cheers).

    But it is time to turn to more serious topics. Europe has become a kleptocracy. Those in power are incompetent and without any true knowledge of the ever deteriorating situation throughout Europe. I point to the violence in our own nation, to the Duxburian Union where many are at grave risk of unemployment, and to many other nations which are threatened by desertification, by poverty, and by much, much more, all of which have been largely ignored by the present political establishment.

    Meanwhile, when those in power do decide to do anything, they do so poorly. Much of what has been done to rectify important issues, especially discrimination, has been done without input from groups benefited and groups affected, nor from those groups with expert knowledge on the situation. On those issues which everyone wants something to be done in exactly one - albeit vague - direction, there is repeated waffling, extreme opposition, and many other such things, all of which in the end stops anything of importance being accomplished.

    This must change. European government must be by and for the people; when developing policy, it must take into account the opinions of those possibly affected, of the minority, of the majority, and of experts, and through consensus or at the very least the agreement of as many as possible, integrate all these into one solution that benefits all.

    That is all I wish to accomplish. I promise no massive, money-consuming projects; I promise only just representation and sane policymaking.

    Thank you for listening.

    posted in Politics and Incidents
  • RE: Official Gazette | HM Government

    URGENT STATEMENT ON EARTHQUAKE IN GRANADA


    The Government of the Kingdom of Reitzmag is concerned about the recent earthquake that struck Granada. We would like to reach to the Government of the Kingdom of Spain and inform them that we are ready to send aid to those affected if necessary. All Reitzmic visitors will also be evacuated back to the country while we will allow Spanish nationals in Reitzmag who wish to see their families that are affected by this disaster to return to Spain with the help of our Royal Air Force and other private partners such as British Airways. Again, we wish the best for those affected.

    Sir Simon Bridges KCMG
    Prime Minister, Kingdom of Reitzmag

    Harvey Wilfred
    Minister, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    Nicholas Harris
    Minister, Ministry of State Borders

    Maddox Carr
    Minister, Ministry of Tourism

    Noted:

    HM George I
    Monarch, Kingdom of Reitzmag

    posted in Government Offices
  • RE: Spain News Media

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    BREAKING - 9 EARTHQUAKES HIT GRANADA IN THE LAST HOUR

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    Some destruction from the 4.4 Earthquake in Granada last Saturday

    9 earthquakes have shook Granada in the last hour, according to the Instituto Geográfico Nacional (IGN). Since the 22nd January, Granada hasn't stopped shaking, with the bigest earthquake registered that day with a magnitude of 4.5. People have exited their houses and ran to the streets because of the panic and fear that it's currently being lived there. Juanma Moreno, the Junta de Andalucía's President, has posted a tweet saying "emergency services are ready to act if needed". Luis Salvador, the mayor of Granada, has asked the people to keep calm and return to their houses: 'I've talked with some experts and they have told me this is normal when these kind of scenarios take place. There's no risk of a big one right now, so please, go back to your houses".

    The Spanish President, Jesús Aguilar, is following the development of the situation in Granada closely. He has summoned the Mayor of Granada and the President of Andalucía to a videochat meeting to follow the situation closely. On a tweet he has posted, Aguilar has alleged he won't sleep tonight, as now it's much more important to 'give attention to what's currently going on in Granada than sleeping.' We will continue informing during the next hours.


    UPDATE - The Junta de Andalucía and the Territorial delegation in Granada have activated the pre-emergency alert in the whole region.


    This is a developing event. Please stay tuned for more information

    posted in European News Consortium
  • RE: François Le Berre for Premier Commissioner | February 2021

    Poster No. 1

    alt text

    posted in Politics and Incidents
  • RE: The Union of Syndicates

    Political Authoritarianism in the Union

    The Union is widely considered to be an authoritarian state.

    Following the collapse of government control in 2011, the Federal Council, elected the year before, assumed near total power. In a partnership with the country's main trade union, which had maintained order in large parts in the country that would otherwise be lawless, it abolished federalism, concentrating almost all power in it. The judiciary lost the power of judicial review; soon after, laws imposing censorship and limits on public assemblies were promulgated.

    Two years later, elections to the central body of the trade union were suspended. They were replaced with appointments made by the Federal Council. This was followed up with the de facto abolition of the ten main federations of the union, replaced with supervisory councils of ten individuals, each making up a part of the central body.

    Meanwhile, regional syndicates were merged into national syndicates for each vocation, all subordinated to their corresponding supervisory council. Elections were maintained for these; however, they were no longer free, with only independents approved by the Federal Council able to run. Through strong interference from the Council, the individual syndicates were reduced from instruments of political power to purely economic bodies.

    The Federal Council then made itself the sole arbitrator between the syndicates, thus giving itself even more power. It thus established itself as the sole political body in the country until 2019, when it began to decentralize power to newly created linguistic bodies, which are now meant to manage social and cultural affairs. Elections to these groups occur sporadically and are subject to the same controls on syndical elections. At the same time, each body is "managed" by a supervisory council that, as with those related to the syndicates, are appointed by the Federal Council.

    All actions undertaken by the syndicates and linguistic bodies must be approved by the Federal Council, adding another level of control.

    Dissidents have described the nature of the Union as "fascistic" as a result of its strong centralization of power and the nature of the division of political power; the government itself denies such a thing, arguing that its ideological pacifism, egalitarianism, and internationalism, in addition to the collegial form of governance, place it as a firmly socialist government.

    posted in The European Factbook
  • RE: Eurorail Inauguration

    Juncker seated with Artabanos on the especially arranged table and nooded after the Inimican Emperor asked him if he was hungry. Then, he answered: "Food on this kind of trains is barely always impressive and delicious, so let's give it a try." The service then started to bring the buffet to both leaders and Juncker decided to eat a typical breakfast food from every country they were travelling through today. Suddently, an announcement from the train driver took place. Just 2 minutes left to depart, and everyone was already on board, doors were closed and the train was ready to depart.

    At 11 o'clock in the morning, the Eurorail was given green light to depart. The wheels started moving, and the first service departed on time from Telum Grand Terminus towards Het Goor, the first stop of the very first Eurorail service stop. Once they left the station, Juncker said: "Emperor Artabanos, we are rolling. Oh, and by the way, this breakfast is delicious; have you tried this Iberic Ham from Spain? You should, it is as delicious as the typical Inimican breakfast products. Also, Mr. Artabanos, we will be invited to the cabin once we have picked up Mr. Aguilar, or that's what my secretary has told me. Furthermore, we are all invited to drive the train: would you like to go first?"

    posted in Internal Affairs Commissioner
  • RE: François Le Berre for Premier Commissioner | February 2021

    An Interview with Le Berre: Conducted on Zoom - Abridged

    INTERVIEWER: M. Le Berre, you served for over 14 years as Minister of Propaganda and Censorship under the totalitarian regime of Areai. This obviously does not reflect on you well; how do you justify this?

    LE BERRE: I do not justify this. However, I did not work in her government willingly. As we all very well know, Areai had a penchant for giving out the death penalty. When the constitutional convention was dissolved, she knew me to be the publisher of L'Humanité - which was very popular before the - how do I say it - events of 1993. So she came up to me and quite simply threatened me. She said that if I did not work for her, was not totally obedient to her, she would have me slowly immersed into a bath of hydrochloric acid. She went as far as to show me the bath and the acid. Where she got it from I don't know, nor do I want to know, but that's not the point. I worked for her - my life was on the line. My experience under her tyranny further underscored this; she would have people put to death in horrific ways for the most ridiculous reasons. A typist in the Ministry, for example, was eaten alive at the order of Areai simply because he wore red socks on a Thursday.

    INTERVIEWER: Did your actions as a minister in Areai's government ever lead to anyone's death?

    LE BERRE: Most likely. I was responsible only for advising her, and conveying information and orders she had given me to the rest of the Ministry and the public. What I said, what I conveyed, probably led to the reporting of many people, the discovery of "negative" messages in letters and other material, and so and so forth. And that most likely led to death for many people. I tried my best to stop her, fed her false information whenever I could; but I don't know what impact this had. She wanted absolutely no dissent; she wanted a nation totally loyal to her, a nation completely dependent on her. But I remain terribly angry with myself. I let so many die; I can never make up for that. I have apologized, over my years, so many times; I must apologize once more. Perhaps I will never be forgiven, never forgive myself; but I probably deserve that.

    INTERVIEWER: Why do you support the current government, in spite of your support for the free press?

    LE BERRE: 30% of the population is part of a cult that wishes to kill everyone that is not a part of it and, afterwards, return the country to a primitive, agrarian state. No fully representative government can stand in such situations. The Federal Council is doing its best to maintain order and what it can of republican norms in these times; it is forced to impose restrictions in order to keep what is left of our old democracy.

    INTERVIEWER: You supported market reforms in 1992. Why, especially considering that they were highly unpopular?

    LE BERRE: I'd hardly call them market reforms. They simply allowed for a greater role for the self-employed, who were previously working illegally. In fact, most people support it now, after what happened in 1993. The only reason they were unpopular then was simply because those were unstable times - times which culminated in the terrors of 1993, which we all can remember.

    INTERVIEWER: What is your ideology?

    LE BERRE: As I have said many times, I consider myself a social democrat. In the long term, I support the development of socialism; but this is not really possible except on a gradual and popularly-supported basis. In the meantime, one can support basic reforms that allow for better conditions for all. At the basis of my ideology, however, is the idea of a republic. Governance, whether economic or political, should be for and by the people, taking into account reason and rationality. It should free the people, allowing them to act as independent citizens, giving them each equal rights and equal treatment under the law.

    INTERVIEWER: If you are to become Premier Commissioner, would you impose socialism on Europe?

    LE BERRE: No. Europe remains firmly capitalist; it is impossible to change that due to popular opinion. At the same time, the development of socialism must first take place on a national basis if it is to maintain itself.

    As Premier Commissioner, as such, I would simply strive to create an inter-European democracy. The voices of all should and must be heard and taken into account; the people should rule. Economically, I would give greater power to workers, as well as small and medium-sized enterprises; however, simply because of their scope, I would continue to give some representation to the largest companies, albeit on a much reduced basis and on one that is not so....corrupt as it is now.

    INTERVIEWER: You support some level of cultural autonomy. If a culture opposes equal rights for all, should it be allowed to do so?

    LE BERRE: No, not always. While adjustments and accommodations can be made in certain areas, in others, they cannot. For example, cultural autonomy cannot be used to justify, for example, eugenics, or a dictatorship.

    posted in Politics and Incidents
  • RE: François Le Berre for Premier Commissioner | February 2021

    The Second Message

    (Le Berre sits in a darkened, obviously small room. Behind him can be seen the outlines of cleaning products, brooms, and mops).

    Hello, Europe! Unfortunately, the mob overran my home, forcing me to leave. I spent the last two days running for my life; I'm sorry for not being able to speak with you.

    However, I have found shelter in the collective farm numbered 180. I have been offered a place to stay, indefinitely - here, in this closet. I will be safe, unless something truly terrible happens. But that is unlikely.

    However, I must say a few - no, many - things.

    Europe faces an ever newer set of problems. Climate change is causing ever more destruction, ever more instability. The livelihoods of farmers, especially on the African continent, are becoming ever more fragile; in the cities, millions face the dangers of flooding and storms, if not already that of deindustrialization and future unemployment.

    At the same time, all are threatened by those above. Those running Europe, those running your countries; most of them are corrupt, caring only for their interests. They want, as I said on the 22nd of January, only to be re-elected, to continue in their positions of power and continue to funnel money and power towards themselves and those around them. They will not represent you; they only represent themselves.

    Under these conditions, Europe needs politics both rational and representative. We can no longer trust those who rule for us to represent us and govern well on our behalf. It is imperative, as such, that we create a new and better mode of governance, one less corrupt, one that is both rational and representative.

    This is what I want so desperately to do. For too long have we been silenced; now, perhaps, we have a chance to bring it all down and finally be heard.

    The screams of those who suffer through injustice upon injustice shall at long last be heard. The voices of the experts who implore us to go another way to save ourselves shall be heard. The people of Europe, who cry as the elite of Europe destroy their lives bit by bit, shall be heard.

    I will not govern; the people, armed with knowledge, shall decide for themselves what is best for them.

    posted in Politics and Incidents
  • RE: Eurorail Inauguration

    "Excellent, Commissioner", Strathclyde whispered in Juncker's ear as the Commissioner stepped down, "You know, you could always use those oratory skills by writing speeches in the Imperial Government. Just a thought..."

    "Thank you, Commissioner Juncker, for those excellent words", Artabanos said when the Commissioner had finished, "It is indeed my privilege to have you here in Telum, at Grand Terminus, where the story of Inimician Rail began. Today, we start a new chapter in that story, with high-speed international rail connections to far-flung destinations. Within hours, Inimicians will henceforth be able to shake hands with our Spanish friends, admire the architecture of Inquista, or do business in the United Duchies. Within minutes, Inimicians can taste North Diessenian crab, fresh from the Caspian, and all of this in comfort. Next time you're up for a holiday, why not take the train? In any case, I think I have very little else to add -- I'm looking forward, without question, to a comfortable and enjoyable ride. Thank you all, and good day."

    With just minutes to spare, the Inimicians and Juncker boarded the brand new Eurorail carriages, and proceeded down the train to the First Class compartments, where a special table had been arranged for them. "Hungry, Commissioner?", Artabanos asked, "I hear the breakfast buffet on these trains is exquisite." Before long, the wheels of the Eurorail train started moving, and the first ever international high-speed train from Inimicus made its way north, to the Diessenian border.

    posted in Internal Affairs Commissioner
  • RE: Commission Nominations, Jan/Feb 2021

    [Candidate photograph or image]
    Candidate Name: Walter Cocx
    Home Nation: The Empire of Inimicus
    Office(s) sought: Premier Commissioner
    Incumbent? (Y/N): N
    Eurogroup Affiliation: N/A
    Biography: Walter was born in the northwestern Inimician city of Astro and began his career as a theoretical physicist. He made the switch from science to politics after the founding of the Empire in 2012 - he was twice elected as Duke of his local Territory and represented his administration as Chair of the Ducal Council last year. His term as Duke was characterised by widespread social and economic reforms, including the introduction of wealth-dependent traffic fines and trials with a universal basic income. He was encouraged to run for Premier Commissioner by the Inimician National Imperial Council last September, and, although defeated during the last contest, is keen to make his open, social, and phenomenal mark on Europe once again.

    posted in European Commission