Danaan High Kingdom
|Danaan High Kingdom of the Resurgent Dream|
|Motto: Fiat justitia, pereat mundus|
|Anthem: Long Reign the King|
|Federal constitutional monarchy|
Owain ap Cunedda
|Accession to Commonwealth||6 September 2006|
|Population (in millions)||1, 531|
The Danaan High Kingdom of the Resurgent Dream is a historic and cultural union of Confederal Members traditionally centered on Dana. However, the High Kingdom also claims almost the entirety of Mists, eight other islands located in the Western Atlantic known as the Atlantic Territories, and large several Members in Ambara. The High Kingdom was a dual-sovereignty federation prior to the formation of the Confederated Peoples. While the Members belonging to the High Kingdom no longer form a governmental union, they continue to recognize a joint crown in the High King of Dana (who is also the Head of the Commonwealth) as well as separate crowns belonging to their various princes and grand dukes.
- 1 History
- 2 Government
- 3 Largest cities
- 4 Economy
- 5 Transportation
- 6 Society
Main article: History of the Danaan High Kingdom
Danaan history can be divided into three broad periods. For the first thousand years of human habitation of Dana, the island was inhabited by Aboriginal Danaans. While these people are known to have possessed extraordinary navigational techniques given the era and their level of development, they were technologically primitive in most other respects. In the mid tenth century, the first settlers from Europe and India began to arrive, settling on various parts of the island. The leader of Narich, the first European settlement, was a Welsh prince of the line of Cunedda who styled himself the King of Narich. He married the aboriginal Princess Maile in order to legitimize his claim on the island, becoming the first high king of the Resurgent Dream and initiating the period when human European feudalism dominated the nation. While the line of Rhygyfarch has twice been interrupted in its reign during the past thousand years, it has remained intact and holds the Crown today. The third period began with the coming of the Fae and the Homecoming War. After the end of this war, the fairy period of Danaan history began, a period marked by peaceful coexistence but also by Fae dominance. This ended at the end of the fairy period, when High Queen Agwene instituted sweeping reforms, turning the nation into a thoroughly constitutional monarchy and a modern liberal democracy. The tragedy of the Shattering changed the demographics of the Resurgent Dream yet more, restoring the nation to its predominantly human status. It was also around this time that the Resurgent Dream expanded its borders greatly, adopted a number of new principalities and became the core of the newly emergent Commonwealth of Peoples. Together, these events brought forth the new Resurgent Dream.
Democracy and suffrage
The Resurgent Dream is an example of a constitutional monarchy. It is also considered a liberal democracy, although purist Rawlsians and other critics dispute this claim. The government is formed according to and operates within a set of limited powers. The Resurgent Dream is governed by a Constitution adopted in 2006. Government is conducted on four levels: National, Principality, Parish, and Municipal. The Resurgent Dream contains apolitical hereditary leaders for the nation as a whole and for individual principalities. Leaders of government on all levels are elected according to democratic parliamentary norms. National judges are appointed at all levels. Most, but not all, principalities and municipalities also have appointed judges. All elected officials are chosen by secret ballot. Danaans enjoy virtually universal suffrage from the age of 17 without regard to race, sex, wealth, or education, with only the high king, his wife, the princes of the various principalities, and their spouses denied the right to vote.
The royal or national government consists of the Parliament, the High King, and the Uasal Court. All of these powers balance each other. The High King is held to have ultimate Sovereignty but, through the Danaan Constitution, he is bound only to exercise his authority in constitutionally prescribed areas and through limited means. The primary functions of the royal government are defense, foreign affairs, the issuing and management of currency, the regulation of trade with foreign nations and between the principalities and the protection of individual rights. The Danaan Constitution enumerates the powers of the various parts of the Royal Government but in general terms, designed to be at least somewhat elastic in interpretation.
Parliament is a unicameral legislative body which meets in the Parliament Building in the Marble City of Tarana. Parliament has 697 members, each referred to as a Member of Parliament or simply MP. Seats in the Parliament are divided among the various principalities on a roughly proportional basis reassessed every ten years. The current apportionment guarantees that every principality has no less than three and no more than 100 seats but beyond that divides the seats propotionally. Principalities are free to pass their own laws regarding how their Members of Parliament are elected, provided only that it is done by popular elections. Most principalities do so by dividing themselves into single-member districts although others use proportional representation.
The Danaan Government is contained in the Parliament and is headed by the Prime Minister, who governs with a mandate from the High King and with the confidence of a majority of the Parliament. The Prime Minister is considered the Head of Government and is generally granted a large measure of discretionary power by Parliament, although this has definite limits.
The High King
The high king is charged with enforcing the laws and defending the rights of the nation. While, in theory, the Danaan High King is a Sovereign authority, he and his heirs are freely bound in perpetuity by his assent to the Constitution. However, while the Constitution gives him a limited role in governance, the high king is expected to remain strictly apolitical, not even allowing his personal political preferences to be known to the public. The primary principle of constitutional monarchy, at least in the Danaan understanding, is that it serves as a sovereign force above party disputes, unifying the nation across party and factional lines to avoid the kind of partisan division common in some states.
The highest court in the Resurgent Dream is the Uasal Court. The Uasal Court plays a unique role in the constitutional process, combining the role of an upper legislative house (although the Court is never considered a part of Parliament) with the function of judicial review. All acts passed by Parliament come before the Uasal Court. The Court can do one of three things when an act comes before it: It can inform Parliament that it has judicial concerns, declare the act entirely unconstitutional or pass the act on the the High King without objection. The Uasal Court is also the ultimate source for the interpretation of all laws, including Acts of Parliament, the Danaan Constitution, and the Common Law. The Uasal Court is also the final court of appeals for all cases involving national law. It has original jurisdiction in all cases involving piracy, treason or violations of any of the Neutrality Acts. However, its jurisdiction in cases involving piracy when it occurs in international waters is restricted by the New Amsterdam Treaty, which gives original jurisdiction in such cases to the Commonwealth International Court. It is also the only civilian court to which the results of a courts martial may be appealed.
Principality and municipal government
The level of government with the most effect on people's daily lives is the Principality. The principalities all have their own constitutions, written or unwritten, and all are presently constitutional monarchies, although this is not required by law. What is required is that the Danaan government guarantee each principality balanced, constitutional government. Principalities typically control education, transportation, infrastructure, and the social security net within their own borders, although Parliament can and often does interfere in these matters. They also may pass their own criminal laws so long as these do not contradict national laws. Principalities are headed by a prince (sometimes called a grand duke), who serve a uniting role similar to that played by the High King in the national government. The political executive proper is contained within the legislature of the principality and operates within the norms of parliamentary democracy. Principalities have their own judicial systems. Some have elected and some appointed judges.
Municipalities are responsible for waste collection, zoning, animal control, and local law enforcement. They are headed either by a mayor, a town council, or a mixture of these two forms of municipal government. Some principalities appoint municipal governments at the principality level while others allow them to be elected by the citizenry.
The original six Danaan principalities were considered to be sovereign kingdoms under one high king for at least the first nine hundred years of the nation's existence. This gradually began to change in the twentieth century as the high throne increasingly centralized the government of the country. It was not, however, until 1990 that then reigning High Queen Agwene formally declared that the Resurgent Dream was a single, indivisible national unit.
The majority of the current 25 Danaan principalities, the result of rapid expansion over the last fifteen years, were established after this declaration and have never been independent states of any sort. However, all Danaan principalities enjoy a fair amount of local autonomy and even certain definite rights against the Royal Government under the federal system which now exists.
The principalities are further divided into various parishes, with most principalities containing 100 such divisions. Parishes are then subdivided into municipalities.
The Resurgent Dream can be divided into four basic areas: Dana, the original island nation; Mists, the islands surrounding Dana (while Dana is technically located in Mists, it is considered large enough and of enough historical import to be classified independently); the Atlantic Territories, the other Atlantic islands including Kagerlund; and Danaan Ambara.
Foreign relations and military
The core of Danaan foreign policy is participation in the Commonwealth of Peoples and the exercise of a constructive leadership role in building and strengthening that supranational actor. The Commonwealth of peoples has a common foreign policy in whose formation the Resurgent Dream is influential. The Resurgent Dream also maintains direct diplomatic relations with the other Commonwealth members and with Pantocratoria and Excalbia.
Within the Commonwealth, the Resurgent Dream advocates a program of moderate promotion of democracy and sentient rights limited by an appropriate respect for the sovereignty of external states. The Resurgent Dream is also a staunch adherent to the theory that normal diplomatic relations are essentially neutral and in no way constitute any show of friendship or support. Because of this, the Resurgent Dream pushes for the Commonwealth to enter into normal diplomatic relations with any state, without prejudice, which agrees to conform to the terms of normal diplomatic relations and with most states willing to guarantee "reasonable diplomatic courtesy."
The Resurgent Dream is a leading member of the Commonwealth of Peoples and almost all of its international organization memberships either are or soon will be done through the Commonwealth under the Commonwealth Common Foreign Policy. The Resurgent Dream does maintain an independent membership in VERITAS. Prior to the formation of the Commonwealth, the Resurgent Dream was involved in the efforts to arrive at a comprehensive agreement in the North Atlantic, encompassing Knootoss, Pantocratoria, Upper Virginia, the Confederation of Sovereign States, Saxmere, and the Resurgent Dream. It is a signatory to the resulting Treaty of Courtland although negotiations are under way at present to transfer signatory status to the Commonwealth as a whole.
The Resurgent Dream has independent, normal diplomatic relations with the other members of the Commonwealth of Peoples and with Pantocratoria and Excalbia. All other diplomatic intercourse is done through the Commonwealth Secretariat for External Affairs. The Resurgent Dream does accept consulates and other diplomatic missions below the level of an embassy from nations but the heads of such missions must be accredited to the Head of the Commonwealth or the Commonwealth Secretary for External Affairs, depending on the level of the mission.
While the Resurgent Dream is a proponent of diplomacy and peace, it does maintain a large military force, including a nuclear weapons program. Danaan military spending is focused largely on the navy. Other branches of the armed forces are not ignored but receive substantially less material, prestige and attention.
The Resurgent Dream contains dozens of large cities,among which is included the global city of Tarana. The populations given below are for persons living inside the city limits only and do not cover broader metropolitan areas.
|2.||Zwingli, Zutern||8,012,006||Danaan Ambara|
|3.||Kenron, Zeng||4,012,008||Atlantic Territories|
|7.||Cobhda, Sanero||1,263,756||Atlantic Territories|
|13.||Caer Gawen, Shieldcrest||777,704||Dana|
|19.||Caer Gruffyd, Shieldcrest||603,337||Dana|
|20.||Caer Gwydion, Shieldcrest||594,359||Dana|
The Resurgent Dream has a massive economy with a per-capita annual gross domestic income of 21,032.27S, the equivalent of 19,818.71 Menelmacari credits or ∂22,116. The Danaan economy is officially classified as "Frightening" by the United Nations, although the classification sometimes drops to "All-Consuming" during periodic market slumps.
The strongest industry in the Resurgent Dream is book publishing, followed closely by information technology and retail. The nation also has a plethora of natural resources, including precious metals, gems, diamonds, and oil. In agriculture, the Resurgent Dream is known for its pork and beef products, as well as its fruits. In manufacturing, book publishing dominates, although automobile and cola are also strong.
Economic activity varies greatly within the Resurgent Dream. Pele, for example, is known for tourism, Corral for fishing, Shieldcrest for agriculture, and the Shieldcrest city of Caer Gawen for film production. Danaan Ambara excels in arms manufacturing and trout farming, while Kagerlund, the one Danaan territory in the Pantocratorian Archipelego, excels in soda and cheese.
The Resurgent Dream trades with many countries, including all signatories to KIST, all members of the VERITAS economic module, and most members of the TNA. The largest Danaan trading partners are Pantocratoria, Excalbia, Allanea, the Dominion, Knootoss, and Menelmacar.
The Danaan economy one heavily reliant upon market forces, although recent governments led by the Liberal and Labor Parties have tended to move in a direction of more economic regulation, a stronger social security net, and a larger public sector. However, most debate on the issue concerns matters of degree. No major Danaan political party favors a shift to a command economy.
The Resurgent Dream has done poorly in past United Nations income equality rankings. The highest 10% of Danaan income-earners is responsible for 40% of consumption while the lowest 10% is responsible for only 1% of consumption. 21,208,000 Danaans are currently below the poverty line.
Transportation in the Resurgent Dream is very different on the island of Dana itself than in other parts of the kingdom. On Dana, many of the towns and much of the infrastructure predates the automobile. Correspondingly, it is not uncommon to find areas where stone or cobblestone roads prevail and where streets designed for horses and carriages have been modified to be suitable for automotive traffic, rather than replaced.
In other parts of the Resurgent Dream, almost everything was built after the invention of the automobile. In these areas, the people benefit from a sophisticated network of high-capacity roads, including high-speed highways that link together such large land masses as Danaan Ambara.
Most large cities in the Resurgent Dream have mass transit systems composed of monorails, subway systems, and buses. These are used disporporionately by the poor, who find them less costly than the prive of purchasing and maintaining a car. However, in congested urban areas, they are also frequently used by people who own or could afford to own an automobile, simply to avoid the hassel of traffic.
Air travel is the preferred means of travelling a long distance in the Resurgent Dream. However, in most areas, an extensive rail network is also available. As there are few landlockaed Danaan principalities, sea travel is also an option in most cases.
The population center of the Resurgent Dream currently remains Shieldcrest. However, this center is slowly shifting away from Dana and towards Danaan Ambara. The fastest growing principality in the last year has been Zutern, followed closely by Amory.
Recent years have seen a great surge in immigration, even as they've seen the almost total decline of the Fae population due to the Shattering. While many immigrants come to the Resurgent Dream fleeing despotism or economic depravation, many others come from comparable Western nations in pursuit of a specific job or a marriage or a specialized education.
Ethnicity and race
The Resurgent Dream is a racially diverse country. There are 25 different ethnic groups which can claim to have at least a million members in the Resurgent Dream and countless more represented in smaller numbers. It is usually said that every ethnic group or sentient species is represented by at least one Danaan citizen. While this is not literally true, it comes very close.
The majority of Danaans are descended from white European immigrants who began to settle most of Dana a thousand years ago. This majority currently stands at 78%. Too little time has passed since the dramatic demographic changes of the Shattering for a respectable estimate to be made as to the stability of this percentage. However, if the experience of other Western nations is a guide, it is likely to decline.
East Asians are the second largest racial group. At 14% of the total population, they are concentrated heavily in the Atlantic Territories. However, East Asians also constitute a substantial minority in Pele. East Asians are mostly immigrants or the descendants of immigrants from China, Japan, Adoki, and Vietnam.
The third largest racial minority, at 6% of the population, consists of South Asians, concentrated overwhelmingly in the Principality of Farinor on Dana itself. They are mostly the descendants of Indian settlers who settled the area hundreds of years ago.
While no other racial group makes up a comparable proportion of the total population, there are a number of other peoples who are highly visible in the Resurgent Dream. Elves, Fae, blacks, and Arabs are all lively minority communities represented at all levels of Danaan society.
As far as actual national heritage groups are concerned, the two largest are the Welsh and the Swiss, each of which makes up a full quarter of the total Danaan population. Most Danaan principalities possess a discernable culture strongly rooted to the national culture of the people who first settled there. Normally, the heritage group of the original settlers continues to predominate or at least to be the most visible in a given principality, although it is uncertain how much this is due to actual ancestry and how much to the assimilation of newcomers to local culture.
Polls indicate that just under 80% of Danaans consider themselves to be Christians. However, the Christianity of certain religious groups, such as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints or the Unitarian Church of the Resurgent Dream, is disputed by Roman Catholics, Orthodox Christians, and some Protestants. The Danaan Ministry for Religion maintains statistics based entirely upon self-identification, leading to numbers which many theologians and religious leaders consider highly problematic.
Statistically, 57% of Danaans identify as mainline Protestants. 12% identify as Confucian and another 12% as Mormon. 6% identify as Catholic. 6% identify as Hindu. 2% of all Danaans identify as Buddhists. 2% identify as Eastern Orthodox. 1% identify as Unitarians. Although not present in statistically large numbers, Jews and Muslims also play an important part in Danaan culture and society.
On the whole, Danaans are more religious than people in many other developed nations. The United Nations consistently ranks the Resurgent Dream among the world's more devout nations. 92% of Danaans consider themselves to be "practising" members of their faith. However, only half as many attend weekly religious services.
In the Resurgent Dream, education is primarily the responsibility of the principalities. However, the central government is involved through the Ministry for Education. The ministry distributes tax funds to educational programs, sets basic national standards, keeps communication open between different public and private educational programs, determines that portion of the civics curriculum which is common in all programs, and ensures the rights of teachers, parents, and students.
In the Resurgent Dream, schooling is mandatory from the age of five until the age of seventeen. Schooling is normally divided into twelve grades which are further divided into elementary, middle, and high school, although the exact cut-off points for each level vary. Parents have the option of schooling their own children at home or sending them to a private school, although such alternative education is still required to meet certain minimum standards.
After high school, students have the option of pursuing further education at a wide-range of institutions, ranging from the prestigious University of Civic Duty and University of Civic Virtue to thousands of two-year vocational programs. Danaan institutions issue everything from vocational certificates for specific jobs to doctoral degrees. They include liberal arts colleges, research universities, vocational programs, military academies, correspondence colleges, and much more. 84% of Danaans pursue some form of further education after graduating high school.
The official language of the Resurgent Dream is English. Twenty-two of twenty-five Danaan principalities also have a second official language. These include Arabic in Amalad, Alekthos, and Kar; Dutch in Corral; French and Hebrew in Selinia; Ge'er in Carasia; German in Thorlund, Zutern, and Kagerlund; Greek in Bilbtoria; Hawaiian in Pele; Hindi in Farinor; Irish Gaelic in Holista; Italian in Nerise; Japanese in Kadoki; Mandarin in Zeng; Polish in Wyrnsk; Scots Gaelic in Fireforge; Sindarin and Quenya in Saraben; Spanish in Sanero; Vietnamese in Legon; and Welsh in Shieldcrest.
The primary signed language is British sign language (BSL).
In 2006, the Resurgent Dream was home to 347 languages of which eleven are indigenous to Danaan territory.
Although lacking in unique musical forms of its own, the Resurgent Dream is home to a large variety of musical forms including classical music, hip hop, country, rock & roll, and the folk musical forms of a wide variety of countries.
Motion picture production in the Resurgent Dream is centralized in Caer Gawen, although films are also often shot in Narich and Tarana. While Caer Gawen cannot claim any international cultural dominance, it does largely monopolize the Danaan film industy. While some foreign films, especially from Excalbia, do well with Danaan audiences, over 80% of all active cinema screens in the Resurgent Dream are showing domestically produced films at any given moment. Some principalities are more receptive to foreign films than others. In Corral, Knootian films are particularly popular. On the other hand, Pantocratorian films are often well received in Selinia.
The major cities of the Resurgent Dream are culturally flourishing places. It is normal for any sizable city to have its own opera, ballet, theatre, and orchestra. The sites of major events all feature musuems and most cities have some sort of community cultural center where locals can learn to paint, sculpt, or perform music and where they can often display their talents for the community. Practically every municipality in the country has a cinema and most have more than one. Most schools offer or require some cultural education as part of their curriculum and the drama departments of most colleges and universities regularly stage plays.
The people of the Resurgent Dream celebrate a wide range of holidays, both secular and religious. Some are recognized by certain principalities or municipalities. Others are simply practiced by the people without official recognition. Eight holidays are nationally recognized: New Year's (1 January), Labor Day (1 May), High King's Day (7 July), Remembrance Day (8 August), and Thanksgiving (8 November).
Sports are less important in Danaan society than the are in many countries, such as Tanah Burung. While most Danaans enjoy sports, they play a very small part in the national consciousness and sporting events are almost never associated with the nation as such.
The most popular team sport in the Resurgent Dream is hurling. Various forms of football, including soccer or Association football, Gaelic Football, Ladies' Gaelic Football, and gridiron are also popular, as is cricket.
Combat sports are mostly popular among the upper classes and the aristocracy, who enjoy fending and jousting. No combat sports enjoy a comparable following among the general population, although boxing, wrestling, and certain forms of martial arts are not unknown.
Baseball has only been introduced to the Resurgent Dream during the last year, at the behest of Grand Duchess Gwendolyn of Shieldcrest and her husband, Prince Peter. The first season of baseball in the Resurgent Dream has thus far proceeded well, with sizable audiences attending games in Shieldcrest and Wintermore.
By far, the most popular sport in the Resurgent Dream is surfing. This sport originated in Pele, where it is almost universally practiced as a recreational activity and where the best surfing competitions are held. It is not so universal in the rest of the country but it is still widely practiced, especially by those who have regular access to a beach. It is the only sport known to be practiced by all adult members of the royal family.
Danaans are more ambivalent about winter sports. Ice hockey has only a very small following, even though field hockey is fairly popular. Figure skating is well-liked by urban audiences but is rarely done competitively and is usually not considered a sport. Snowboarding has a few adherents, most of whom stress the similarity to surfing. Bobsledding and the luge are both unpopular and skiing is generally abhorred.