High Oracle Update - Bill of Rights
Upon taking the job as High Oracle I read though the Regions RMB (not all just the recent stuff) and discovered that a Bill of Rights has already been signed into law.
Furthermore I discovered that it was drafted by a previous Grand Luxarch Ancient Greek Kingdoms. I therefore, upon my own initiative, telegramed our previous Grand Luxarch and asked if he still had a copy. He seemed shocked at this request as he said that he telegramed it to a high ranking member of the government (however, refused to say who). Thankfully he honoured my request and sent me the exact same telegram that he sent a member of our government. Here it is
The following document states the undeniable rights held by every citizen nation of the Region of Abydos. No right stated within shall be construed to infringe on another.
Article 1 - Political Rights:
§1.1 All citizens of Abydos have the right, with no obligation, to participate in the Regional government of Abydos. Including such actions as:
- Running for elected office, unless already serving in another capacity;
- Serving in appointed government positions, unless already serving in another capacity;
- Voting in any and all regional elections; which are to be free, fair, and transparent;
- Voting on regional polls;
- Apply to join, or create, a regional political party; and
- Apply to join a regional guild of their choice.
§1.2 Citizens have the inherent right to lodge a complaint against the actions of officials and government bodies. Complaints shall be examined according to the procedure and within the time-limit established by law.
§1.3 Actions by officials that contravene the law or exceed their powers, and infringe the rights of citizens, may be appealed against in the manner prescribed by law.
Article 2 - Citizen Rights:
§2.1 All citizens have the right to run their individual sovereign nations as they see fit. No other nation within the region of Abydos has the authority to force any citizen nation to conform to a political ideology against their will.
§2.2 All citizens have the right to vote or abstain, both regionally and within the World Assembly, as they see fit, without penalty.
§2.3 All citizens have the freedom to give and to retract World Assembly endorsements from whomever them choose, without penalty.
§2.4 All citizens have the right to communicate and associate with any and all other citizens of Abydos whom they choose, without penalty.
§2.5 All citizens have the right not to be discriminated against for their political ideologies or affiliations, their religious ideologies, or by the race, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, or physical or mental health or disability of their player.
§2.6All citizens have the right not to be harassed by other regional nations. They shall not be the target of bullying, trolling, or general insults within the region of Abydos.
§2.7 All citizens have the right to communicate via telegrams, regional board messages, NationStates sanctioned forums and/or discord server messages in any human language, without penalty.
§2.8 All citizens of Abydos have the right to bear arms against invaders of Abydos to aid in its defence along with the defence guild
§2.9 All citizens have the right to engage in Roleplay in the region of Abydos without discrimination
§2.10citizens hold the right not to be judged or discriminated upon based on their actions in a foreign region
Article 3 - Resident Rights
Recognises that every nation in Abydos may not be citizens
§3.1 Grants the residents of Abydos basic rights of freedom to post on the RMB. telegrams and any NationStates sanctioned forum without discrimination
§3.2 Residents are not to be harassed into applying for citizenship
§3.3 Residents may run their nation as they see fit without any interference from the citizens of Abydos
§3.4residents have the right of anonymity and not have their identifying player information exposed publicly
§3.5political refugees and foreign asylum seekers have the right to use Abydos as a safe haven from foreign threats.
Article 4 – Legal Rights:
§4.1 All nations have the right of citizenship after having met the preconditions as established by law
§4.2 All nations have the freedom of mobility. Meaning that any citizen nation of Abydos may remain in or leave either the citizenry or region of Abydos without penalty, unless expelled. And so too may any nation re-apply for citizenship without penalty, unless they left the region or citizenry as a result of exile.
§4.3 All nations have the right to due process, including a swift, public trial, to be judged by members of the Conclave.
§4.4 All nations have the right of habeas-corpus, and thus, may not be charged with a criminal offence without good reason.
§4. 5 All nations have the right not to be removed from the citizenry or region without just legal cause.
§4.6 All nations have the right not to testify in a criminal trial.
§4.7 All nations have the right not be tried for the same offence twice.
§4.8 All nations have the right to bring a criminal accusation or civil complaint against another citizen, to be decided by the Conclave of Scribes.
§4.9 All nations have the right to provide themselves third-party defence in criminal
proceeding in the form of another citizen member acting as their legal counsel in court.
§4.10 The collection, keeping, use and dissemination of information about the private life of a citizen and such information as IP addresses, postal addresses, email addresses and phone numbers shall not be allowed without their consent
This bill of drafted with drafts already constructed by:
Therefore, as there has been no official repeal on this law this bill of rights stands as law in Abydos and any attempt to go against these rights as set out before us would be an act of treason against Abydos.
If further clarification would be required on the matter I’d be more than happy to give it. This is our Bill of Rights and it must be respected.
Case Against the Bill of Rights
Near as I can tell, the Bill of rights was never signed into law by the High Priest at the time, Zartavaria, who keeps detailed records of every law signed under his factbooks. The Conclave voted in favor of it, but it was never signed, effectively rendering it null and void. All laws Require A Signature.
The Accompanying Axiom Was Never Ratified
The work around of the Bill of Rights was that because the Bill of Rights draft wasnt comparable with normal law structure, that the Rights would act as a separate document and a regular law would be used to cement those rights into existence. A law was written up by former Scribe Antideluvian Empyria however this proposal also was never ratified by the Conclave.
It is not treason to Oppose the Bill of Rights
Nations can oppose any law they like. Punishments can only be dolled out if they violate the law. But advocating for its repeal is not treason. In the case of the Bill of Rights, the government at the time, for various reasons, failed to ratify the Bill of rights and so no such repeal is necessary.
I don't think the Grand Luxarch or the Founder ever expected that document - or any from before the rebellion - to resurface, so they never bothered officially repealing it. This is quite the turn of events and, if I may say so, quite amusing to see. The Oracle is correct however in saying that it is technically still Abydosian law. But I do also see how it may conflict with current sentiments.
Therefore, I do believe that, as High Priest, it is my right and solemn duty to call a debate on the topic, and in 24 hours, officially call a vote of the Conclave to either:
1. Reaffirm the Bill of Rights as it currently stands and have it enacted immediately,
2. Reform the Bill to better suit our current regional standards and sensibilities,
3. Draft an entirely new piece of legislation to stand in place of the Bill, or
4. Reject the Bill outright and continue as we have been.
Werband Opsender Narration I open the floor to you to hear your thoughts on the matter. I believe we already know the feelings of Scribe Zartavaria, though he by all means may continue to state his case.
I, Eastern Ashanti, High Priest of the region and peoples of Abydos, by the power invested in my by the citizens and by the Eye of Abydos, hereby put the Bill of Rights forward as legislation to the Conclave.
Qon, you wanted activity. This is your activity.
Show me a High Priests Signature for a Bill of Rights. I mai tain it is not law because I can fi d no such signature for it being signed into law.
No, obvious power struggle.
My previous post still stand then. As does my call to the Scribes. Consider this a reevaluation of the Bill of Rights.
Bill Of Rights Not Ratified
Please Note that prior to this point several nations began independently writing a draft with their own ideas. The idea was suggested that once each was done, they would be displayed, combined, edited and an official version be made public.
1. Zyris, myself lists out four possible ways in which a Bill of Rights could fit into the framework of Abydos. Options 2 and 3 Seemed most desirable to those who replied with Option 2 being the strongest way for ratification. This involved 1st writing a Bill of rights and having the Conclave ratify it, then a constitutional amendment to Insert Bill of rights into the Eye.
Newly Elected High Priest Zartavaria delivers an inaugural speech and issues a warning against amending the Eye if Abydos, bit the importance and some cautions about a Bill of Rights.
Scribe Antideluvian Empyrea Proposes an act to Allow for the Conclave to Draft a Bill of Rights. It lays out the process to do so:
WE SHALL as members of the Conclave – citing and respecting the legal and traditional precedences of both the Eye of Abydos and the Abydos Axioms - draft an official Factbook listing the inalienable rights and freedoms of any and all citizens of Abydos.
WE SHALL, through the passing of this bill, officially request that the Founder and Grand Luxarch to enshrine the authority of such a charter in the Eye of Abydos, not as an amendment itself, but via a written notice in the Eye, simply acknowledging its legitimacy. Thus, not only will infringing on the rights of a citizen be illegal, but unconstitutional also.
WE SHALL ensure that the wording of this charter does not come into conflict with any pre-existing laws or constitutional regulations already in place.
Zyris Suggests that The Bill of Rights be placed at the bottom of the Eye of Abydos with a link at the top as an idea for how the amendment could happen. This idea becomes the standard implementation which is both safest and easiest and is accepted by some Scribes.
Scribe AE states that the Bill of Rights Authorization Bill has yet to be voted on.
- We have my resolution - to authorise a Bill of Rights to be drafted - to vote on.
At This Point:
We have several drafts to the Bill of Rights that need deciding on, we have an Authorization Act that needs ratified to authorize the Conclave to Create a Bill of Rights, and we still need a Constitutional amendment to place The Bill of Rights into the Eye. So first is Authorization, then Ratification, then Amendment. Let's see if this is done.
Scribes Antideluvian Empyrea and Bona Fidia Announce they have teamed up to compare their Individial early drafts.
Oracle Tristes Tropiques suggests to the Conclave that a Bill of Rights should not be their first priority as it is making laws for the sake of making them.
High Priest Zartavaria refutes The Oracles suggestion on the grounds that all citizens have the right to suggest laws. He further states that ultimately A Bill of Rights must be Amended I to the Eye by the Grand Luxarch and Founder.
At this Point:
Complaints are arising that the Abydos RMB is so active it is impossible to keep up. I feed this was true as there would often be over 100 posts a day, too many for reasonable players to keep up. It could also be said that for at least a short time, The Oracle was successful in derailing the Bill of Rights Agenda as the discussions moved toward political parties and their organization.
Scribe Armagstan posts his "Mandates of Freedom", the first publicly available draft of Bill of Rights.
Scribe Armagstan joins AE and Bona Fidia in their team to draft a Bill of Rights.
A Week Passes:
Scribe Antideluvian posts his proposed bill of rights and an immediate Bill in the Conclave to vote for it. This was the first time the AE Bill of Rights Draft was made public, and so, without input from citizens, the Conclave is forced to vote.
This also ignores Scribe AEs previous mention that the Conclave had to create a bill just to authorize the Conclave to enact a Bill of Rights since it is outside the Parameters of the Eye of Abydos.
Scribe Antideluvian Empyrea Declares the vote ratified with just 3 scribes voting for it. He calls for High Priest Zartavaria To break the tie vote. the Actual vote was 3 in favor and three abstains. Zyris corrects this and states that an abstained vote isnt a vote thus there is no tie, it is 3 in favor, 0 against.
High Priest Zartavaria basically says that most nations were in the drafting stage and that He would delay the signing of the vote until those drafts emerge. As of now the Antideluvian Bill rushed through the Conclave is in limbo.
Founder Zyris states that if the High Priest signs it he will work with the the Grand Luxarch for the proper amendments. If he does not sign it, then the citizens should have greater input on the Bill of Rights and he welcomes that as well.
It is agreed by all that the bill of rights drafts be combined with the best elements of all.people rather than Scribe AEs solo ratification attempt. Zartavaria then proposes his own draft and the drafts of the others are also made public.
Scribe AE agrees to make a new draft combining elements from all the drafts. Later that day he develops an entirely new document which is widely praised. A re-vote is decided for the next day. Mysteriously, the Grand Luxarch resigns his party, and urges the High Priest to sign the next vote for the Bill of rights in an apparent sign of backroom dealing to get the Bill of Rights ratified.
To be Continued.
Bill of Rights Not Ratified Part 2
Tensions are rising in Abydos as increased complaints of an inability to keep up with developments continue. The Grand Luxarch just resigned his party, a revote of the Bill of Rights is being pushed by Scribe AE and the Authorization for the Conclave to ratify the Bill of Rights is being ignored for a more aggressive and direct Approach. What happens Next is very legally questionable because the same Scribe who said that the Conclave needed Authorization to ratify a Bill of Rights since it involved an Amendment now ignores their own warnings and pushes through. Let's Explore.
Scribe AE becomes the new Loyalist Party Leader, drastically changing it and cementing a growing rift between that party and the Sacred Eye Party. He then calls the Conclave to vote, now attributing the Bill of Rights to the Grand Luxarch, Ancient Greek Kingdoms. The Re-vote with the new Compromised Bill of Rights passes 4 to 0, same as before, this despite the vote being interrupted by another Scribe calling for election reform.
Oracle Tristes Tropiques Issues a series of Law Reviews, First undermining the decision of the Grand Luxarch toward the citizenship status of a resident, and later on the Political Party Standardization Act. These reviews are widely unpopular, and like the Scribes intervention during the vote on Electoral reform, continue to erode the vote on a Bill of Rights.
High Priest Zartavaria is reminded by the Grand Luxarxh that the Bill of Rights passed 4 to 0 with 2 abstentions. Zartavaria replies:
- Consider it signed. I'll publish a bulletin making it official.
- I, Edward Zartavaria, High Priest of Abydos, hereby sign the Bill of Rights into law.
Scribe AE declares in all caps that Abydos legally has rights, despite the fact that AE ignored his own requirement to Authorize the Conclave to do this and despite the fact that no Constitutional amendment has taken place yet. The only thing actually decided by the Conclave is which set of rights drafts would be used.
The RMB explodes into a shouting match over the Law Reviews by the Oracles with the recent compromise on the rights draft taking back seat to political divisions.
It should further be noted that the High Priest never has issued a bulletin for his signing of the Bill of Rights, unlike every other bill ratified. No copy exists of it anywhere, no record of it, no RMB posts about that. For the sake of assumption, I'll assume his singular words above count and that that draft was signed. Without anything else though, this process was never completed. No writ of revision exists, and the Bill of Rights never made it to the Eye of Abydos.
The Conclave would soon turn their attention and spar over Voting reform and later have a fierce political election that resulting in mass resignations. The Bill of Rights vote would be all but forgotten as the later Conclave struggled to form and dis not prioritize it. Eventually popular opinion turned against until today.
The Conclave can cast votes on a lot of things, It voted for the Compromised Draft of the Bill of Rights. Even so, this was a vote. The Bill of Rights, however is not a Law. A law is clearly defined with the three Articles and other basic requirements. The Conclave needed to Pass a Law allowing for this draft to be recognized and it never did so. Furthermore the Grand Luxarch and Founder never Made a Writ to incorporate it. The only thing the Conclave did is decide on what draft to use. Deciding on a draft of a Bill of Rights is not a Law in any way, shape or form. I conclude, and I think anyone else who spends the hours scouring the RMB can conclude that Abydos does not have a Bill of Rights.
At best it has a draft that at one time the Conclave agreed Should be made into a bill of rights. Beyond that, no move was ever made to make this agreed upon draft law.
I’ve read through the history Qon and as High Oracle I am more than satisfied that this Collective Bill of Rights that our Grand Luxarch created was made from drafts proposed by many different nations and he took it upon himself to make a document that would suit everyone.
Upon completing this document it was passed to the Conclave and it was then given to Zartavaria to sign which I have proved he did.
There is no question about it that this bill has been passed and as High Oracle I make the judgement on Law as given to me in Article 3 section 1 interpretation of law.
I am well aware that you are completely against a bill of right and you can spin it however you like. In this situation it is clear that it has been passed by the Conclave and signed into law by the High Priest. It’s there in black and white.
If the High Oracle Recognizes the Bill of Rights as a law, then the High Oracle shall be obliged to recognize that the Bill of Rights draft as recognized by the the Conclave is unconstitutional on the grounds of:
- §8.8. Legal Template
All laws and repeals shall be standardized into a single template format. Each law shall have a maximum of three articles. In Article 1 and 2, the first two words of the act shall be 'We shall'. The third Article of all laws and repeals shall be 'We shall not'. All laws and repeals shall be dated, and recorded chronologically so as to provide a timeline of legislative events for Abydos. All scribes shall be listed on every law or repeal to account who voted for and against along with the presidents signature and date.
I would furthermore encourage and remind the High Oracle that there is a clear distinction between a vote and a ratification of law. What the Bill of Rights vote was was a vote, not a ratification of a law. this is made clear here:
- §8.2. Role of the Conclave
The Conclave shall serve as the primary legislative body of Abydos with the passage and repeal of laws. The Conclave shall additionally conduct other voting, discussion, debates, and opinions periodically to insure its own function. The Conclave shall conduct the Grand Conclave when a vacancy in the office of Grand Luxarch triggers an election or when the Grand Luxarch opts to have their successor elected.
Since the Bill of Rights does not conform to the standards of a law, it is considered Other Voting. As such, the Bill of Rights is not a law, because the people at the time never made it into law. They did not pass a law to make it such, and the founder and Grand Luxarxh never hammered out an agreement to make it so.
To recognize the Bill of Rights as a law is to knowingly act contrary to the Eye of Abydos, which as we all know is unconstitutional. I am legally obligated to NOT recognize the Bill of Rights as a law, bit instead as simply a vote for an uncompleted project started long ago. That is the only constitutional position I can take. I am not opposed outright to a Bill of Rights, but I cannot in good faith recognize we have a Bill of Rights legally in Abydos if we do not. If you wish to have a Bill of Rights, complete the constitutionally required steps to have one. I'm okay with that, until then, nope.
edit: I'll encourage the High Oracle to write a Law Review on this subject as I have provided reasonable objections to the Bill of Rights issue and provided ample proof that either:
If the Bill of Rights Vote is a Law, then it is an unconstitutional one Or;
If the Bill of Rights is a vote then it is incomplete as it requires a Writ of Revision.
Either way, the issue requires resolutuon.
You are not legally obligated to recorgnise anything as law. As Grand Luxarch the question of laws is outside of your jurisdiction. Yes you can have influence on the Conclave but that’s where it begins and ends.
There is no precedent for a bill of rights in Abydos and at the time you yourself had no objections with the way this was executed therefore on the point of the draft being Unconstitutional I hold it to be constitutional.
Furthermore, on your second point is null as it rests on the point that this draft is unconstitutional and as I have said above that is is constitutional in the view of the High Oracle.
Therefore, the constitutional position I take as High Oracle is that this Collective Bill of Rights is Constitutional and should be given the respect it deserves.
Furthermore, and rather controversial, I invite former Grand Luxarch Ancient Greek Kingdoms to come and explain this matter of the Collective Bill of Rights as it was himself who created it and as one of the nations present at the time he will be more than suitable to shed some more light on the situation. I understand that older members of Abydos who were present as the time of the Great Exodus would rather he but out of matters of Abydos. I believe he should be given a chance to speak about this Collective Bill of Rights and defend its passage through the conclave.
I find it unusually paradoxical that in one sentence you say:
- As Grand Luxarch the question of laws is outside of your jurisdiction.
and a few sentences later:
- I believe he [Former Grand Luxarch Ancient Greek Kingdoms] should be given a chance to speak about this Collective Bill of Rights and defend its passage through the conclave.
So in one sentence the Granf Luxarch has no say, and in another sentence you invite a Grand Luxarch in to biasly "Defend its Passage". If the question of laws is outside my jurisdiction, then it is certainly out of Ancient Greek Kingdoms jurisdiction as well. Ancient Greek Kingdoms who not only hasnt been Grand Luxarch in 7 months, but also not even a resident or citizen. He is, of course always welcome to come and speak and offer his opinions and insight, I would love that. Actually been waiting for months for him to do so so if he comes, it would be a huge honor. But him offering his opinions in a ham fisted attempt to find someone to agree with you is no more valid than my attempts at offering an opinion in opposition to you. Your own statement about the invalidity of the Grand Luxarch to have such legal jurisdiction negates your transparent attempt to find some foreigner in the world who will agree.
The passage of the Bill of Rights
Nobody disputes you on that the Bill of Rights was not voted upon by the Conclave. It was, we agree. That vote was also signed by former High Priest Zartavaria. We all Agree. You can not therefore expect to gain anything by having others agree to something we all agree to. The question here isnt that the Conclave cast a vote or the High Priest signed something, the question is is that which they voted on a law?
If that vote is a law, then I have outlined how it is an unconstitutional one.
If that vote is not a law, then it is not legal because it was incomplete with both the parameters agreed upon at the time and the Eye of Abydos Itself.
I have outlined these in great detail. Proved through the law that the bill of rights is not legally binding and would encourage the Oracle to encourage a legal conclusion to this issue. The Conclave most vote on a real law to make the Bill of Rights relevant, and the Grand Luxarch and Founder (myself) will happily move to make a Writ of Revision to make it legal. Skirting the issue by pretending that an incomplete vote is somehow legal and binding serves no good purpose at this time.
This issue belongs to the Conclave to either make it right or drop it altogether... legally.
From what I can gather from the posts Qon quoted, and through some investigation of my own, it seems that the bill of rights is a charter, rather than a law itself. The law was Antideluvian Empyrea's proposal mandating the drafting of a charter and for that charter to be recognized as engrained in the constitution with equal legal authority. One cannot write a bill of collective rights in three bite-sized paragraphs as a "We will" "We will not". The formatting straight up doesn't work. So the Charter isn't unconstitutional because it was never meant as a law or to be written as a law, but rather as a legal entity like the Axioms.
The Conclave never got a chance to vote on the resolution to draft a charter because it was swallowed by the traffic on the RMB, but agreed to unofficially by multiple members of the regional government.
The charter was drafted despite the initial resolution never being put to a vote in the legislature, but the Charter was ratified by Conclave vote, High Priest ascent, and did not receive a veto from the Grand Luxarch. Neither did the High Oracle at the time dictate that the ratification was unlawful, even though the initial resolution was not officially ratified. It even required bi-partisan collaboration for its drafting.
I think the is editing to be done with the charter, but, while unorthodox and perhaps a little casually done, it had the consent and ascent of the regional government. So yes it is up to the Conclave members to affirm the authority of the charter, revise it, or dismiss it.
now we are cooking.
Katniss Everdean, I will be happy to accompany you on any mission you wish, either as a Piler or in Recon/Intel. Paging through the activity feed endlessly for hours is a hobby of mine when Abydos is slow. Update times are slightly more difficult due to my work schedule IRL. All nations are encouraged to join in as well and Defend our great region.
welcome Heavenly Ashina to Abydos. Please take a moment and introduce yourself to your new NS family. We value participation and a competitive gameplay experience. Citizenship will be your next quest after your introduction, a d from there political office.
Oh, what a surprise, a new nation. Welcome to the great region of Abydos Heavenly Ashina. You can do amazing things in this region and I look foreward to working with you. If you have any questions or would like to launch your career here early, please become a citizen and inquire about the various political parties. There are plenty of government offices available to you.
Interesting, this was talked about earlier but didn’t come into affect.
I’m just worried I might stop to study for a few days then get kicked.