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Commonwealth of Dracul

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Commonwealth of Dracul
Comunitatea lui Dracul (Romanian)
Flag of Commonwealth of Dracul
Flag
Coat of arms of Commonwealth of Dracul
Coat of arms
Motto: "Deo Vindice"
"God Vindicates"
Anthem: "Dracul, Our Fatherland"

National March: "March of Dracul"
Great Seal
LocationClear Lake, Houston, Texas
CapitalBran District
Largest CityFort Howie, North Dracul
Official languagesEnglish
Recognised regional languagesHindi
Romanian
Spanish
Ethnic groups
(2023)
  • 71% White
  • 9.3% South Asian
  • 8.4% Hispanic/Latino
  • 4.6% Arab
  • 3.7% Black
  • 2.8% East Asian
Religion
(2023)
Demonym(s)Draculian
GovernmentFederal parliamentary constitutional monarchy
• Prince
Stephen
Whisper Williams
LegislatureParliament of Dracul
Establishment
• Constitutional Republic
25 September 2017
• Creation of States
1 February 2018
• Constitutional Monarchy
5 September 2022
4 December 2022
• House of Jipa
16 July 2023
Area
• 
0.45 km2 (0.17 sq mi)
• Water (%)
2.30
Membership121
GDP (nominal)2022 estimate
• Total
$278.44
CurrencyUS Dollar ($) (de facto)
Dracul Mark (ψ) (CDM)
Time zoneUTC-5 (CST)
• Summer (DST)
UTC-6 (CDT)
Date formatmm/dd/yyyy
Driving sideright
Calling code+1

Dracul, officially the Commonwealth of Dracul (drækəl), is a North American micronation, self-classified as a Crowned Republic, located within and surrounded by Houston, Texas. A democratic state in function, Dracul has grown to become a reasonably well-known member of the micronational community, holding friendly ties with several prominent micronations. The country, founded on 25 September 2017, gathers at a large public park. Since its founding, Dracul has risen to encompass more than 90 members from over 20 different nations throughout the globe and has gained recognition from countless micronations. Dracul is also a founding member of the North American Charter Organization.

Dracul has referred to itself as "sovereign" since its start in 2017 and has held itself in that regard, engaging in actions such as; establishing a currency and printing novelty banknotes, creating its own community and governmental traditions, holding elections and ceremonies, and engaging in public awareness initiatives; such as its popular 2019 suicide prevention campaign. In a macronational context, Dracul operates as a community with a government-inspired organizational hierarchy.

History

The Commonwealth of Dracul takes its name from the Prince of Wallachia, which is attributed as to why Vlad III is a national hero of Dracul. Dracul was established on 25 September 2017 in Houston, Texas by Dmitri Howie, Stephen Luke, Kassie Bushong, and Mark Millner. The exact reasons for why Vlad III was chosen is still unclear; however, it is known that Stephen Luke was born in Romania, while Dmitri Howie claimed bloodline to Vlad III. It was this very fact that led many to believe why the two primary founders chose Vlad III and Romanian heritage as their micronation's basis.

In 2017, Stephen Luke, Dmitri Howie, and Mark Millner were seeking a way to voice their views on creating a nation that best suited their needs, and in their opinion, would benefit others as well. It wasn't until September 2017 when Stephen Luke came across micronationalism and announced it to the three others. After reviewing what micronationalism was about, the four decided that creating their own nation was the best way to go about voicing their political views. The three founders ultimately concluded that this country project would not only be for entertainment purposes but advocacy as well, such as suicide awareness and anti-bullying causes.

An advisory for the initiation of the first suicide awareness campaign was set to begin on 1 September 2019. Several nations, including the Grand Duchy of Westarctica and Republic of West Who, quickly joined in, wanting to help in any way possible. Positions in the campaign ranged from information gathers to simple advertisers. The campaign proved to be a true success and still is available on the Government's website.

Mark Millner, a co-founder of the micronation, began his connection with Dracul as an average citizen, then joining the Draculian Navy. After several months of dedication and assistance in ceremonies, Howie and Luke made the decision to grant Millner the status of "Founding Father". Millner's popularity soared as he was seen as a flag bearer in most photos and ceremony events on Dracul 1 Television.

Founders

Dracul was originally founded by Stephen Luke, Dmitri Howie, and Mark Millner, originally as a side hobby for the three. In 2019, Whisper Williams and Kassie Bushong were dubbed founding persons, due to their dedication towards progress. Others, such as Bruce Cooper, Scott Jeanes, and Connor Modena followed.

Founders were generally selected based on their statesmanship, loyalty, and continuous dedication towards the nation. Generally, if an individual had longevity, fulfilled commitments, completed ambitious goals, and progressed the nation, they would be nominated for the status of "founding father". Today, "founding person" is the common phrase, since founder Kassie Bushong is female.

Creation of States

On 1 February 2018, the states of North Dracul and South Dracul were created to allow citizens of Dracul to create their own legislation and state programs. Dracul wanted citizens to have locations to choose from, instead of just claiming membership to the Commonwealth. The first governors were Eric Harvey Williams, Jr and Kassie Bushong, with others who eventually took their place. Today, the position of Governor has been dissolved in both states, due to the lack of manpower and activity from their citizens.

National Government Action

The National Government has taken major action in rare occasions, specifically related to Capitals and Citizenship. Originally, North and South Dracul states were to operate on an individual basis, however after a drop in citizen commitment and activity, most decisions are made on the federal level.

Federal Capital Relocation

On 5 July 2020, the Parliament of Dracul confirmed a vote to create a federal district, which would be the new home of Dracul's capitol. Prior to the decision, Dracul's capitol was part of North Dracul. Through Parliament's discussion, it was stated that North Dracul State received more benefits and federal funding, compared to South Dracul State, since the federal capitol was part of North Dracul. Parliament considered this a conflict of interest, which ultimately led to the vote for capitol relocation to Bran District.

Republic to Monarchy Transition

The middle of August 2022 brought a discussion to the Founder's Committee, of adopting a ceremonial Prince into the Commonwealth, for the purposes of preserving Vlad Tepes' history, as well as continuing the royal legacy of Vlad's house, the House of Basarab. The plan is for the Prince to be the sole historian of the nation, while granting noble titles to those who go above and beyond to provide for the community. Currently, Parliament made the official changes on 5 September 2022, officially changing Dracul to a Constitutional Monarchy, as well as changing the titles of the President and Vice President.

Eventually, the Founder's Committee of Dracul received a recommendation from Prime Minister Jordan Farmer of Westarctica, of a candidate with experience in proper management of monarchies. James I of Great Hanover was that candidate who was eventually introduced via phone conference. Over the course of two months, Dracul became well acquainted with King James and the two realized their mutual compatibility. After laying out the ground work for establishing the ceremonial monarchy, 1 November 2022 was the date selected for King James's Princely installation, taking place live from his physical palace.

Royal House of Jipa

The House of Jipa was established in 2022, when Stephen Luke was given nobility status by Prince Jakob, part of the Royal House Von Gerichten. In 2023, after the abdication of Prince Jakob, Stephen Luke was named heir to the throne, thus creating the Royal House of Jipa. Several new family members were welcomed into the Royal House, to create a Royal Line of Succession. Presently, there are two additional houses waiting in the line of succession (Millner, Vindar), however, due to the significant number of members in Jipa, the likelihood of another house taking the throne during Dracul's existence is unlikely.

National and state elections

National and state elections typically take place every four years within Dracul. This includes Chancellor/Vice Chancellor, Members of Parliament, along with State Governors and Lieutenant Governors. Mayors, if any, typically are elected every two years, depending on the state or city bylaws.

First State Governors

Governor Kassie Bushong of South Dracul being sworn in, 2019

On 25 October 2018, both states began seeking candidates for their Governor positions. January 7, 2019, elections were held to elect the first governors of the North and South Dracul States. Victory was declared by Eric Harvey Williams, Jr for North Dracul, by a vote of 66.67 percent. Kassie Bushong secures a South Dracul victory, by a vote of 100 percent. Both governors spent their first year getting to know their state citizens, which proved successful in a public relations perspective but hurt the growth of both states, along the lines of developing state constitutions and state legislation. As of January 2021, neither state has a constitution.

First Presidential election

The first Presidential election took place on 8 November 2021, which resulted in a victory for Presidential Candidate Stephen Luke and Vice-Presidential Candidate Connor Modena. The two ran together unopposed, however voting was still encouraged since two propositions were on the ballot. The first President Dmitri Howie was appointed by the founders, due to a lack of citizenship at Dracul's launch. All future Presidents will be elected via the first-past-the-post system. Stephen Luke and Connor Modena's inauguration was on January 8, 2022.[1]

Government and politics

The Commonwealth of Dracul is a constitutional monarchy of two states and a federal district. It is a constitutional monarchy and a representative democracy, "in which majority rule is tempered by minority rights protected by law." In the Draculian federalist system, citizens are subject to three levels of government: federal, state, and local. The local government's duties are commonly split between county and municipal governments. In almost all cases, executive and legislative officials are elected by a plurality vote of citizens by district. The government is regulated by a system of checks and balances defined by the Draculian Constitution, which serves as the country's supreme legal document. The original text of the Constitution establishes the structure and responsibilities of the national government and its relationship with the individual states. Article One protects the right to the "great writ" of habeas corpus. All laws and governmental procedures are subject to judicial review and any law ruled by the courts to be in violation of the Constitution is voided.

The federal government comprises three branches:[2]

  • Legislative: The unicameral Parliament, made up of the Senate makes federal law, declares war, approves treaties, has the power of the purse, and has the power of impeachment, by which it can remove sitting members of the government.
  • Executive: The Chancellor is the commander-in-chief of the military, can veto legislative bills before they become law (subject to Parliamentary override), and appoints the members of the Cabinet (subject to Senate approval) and other officers, who administer and enforce federal laws and policies.
  • Judicial: The Supreme Court and lower federal courts, whose judges are appointed by the president with Senate approval, interpret laws and overturn those they find unconstitutional. The Supreme Court, led by the chief justice of Dracul, has currently one member, who serves for life.

The Parliament (unicameral) can have up to 5 members, with each state having two senators, elected four-year terms; all seats are up for election every four years. Bran District does not have voting senators. The Chancellor serves a four-year term and may be elected to the office no more than twice in a row. The Chancellor is elected by direct vote. The state governments are structured in a roughly similar fashion. The governor (chief executive) of each state is directly elected. Some state judges and cabinet officers are appointed by the governors of the respective states, while others are elected by popular vote.

Key Members of Government

Political parties and elections

Dracul allows political parties to exist, to provide a better opportunity for candidates in elections to run off of. In 2019, the Parliament determined that political parties could eventually cause unrest, leading to a takeover of Dracul, which could lead to a restructuring of the nation, especially along the lines of ideology. This was seen as a possible threat to what Dracul originally stood for and Parliament banned political parties. In 2020, Parliament reverted the law, in favor of allowing political parties, since it was deemed unconstitutional to prohibit political parties.

Foreign relations

Grand Duke Travis (Westarctica), along with Prince Stephen (Dracul), Chancellor Williams, and Naval Commander Millner, at their first state visit.

The Commonwealth of Dracul informally recognizes all micronations, however does on a case by case basis, make official recognition with other micronations, via physical trade agreements and military pacts. Up until 2023, Dracul approved mutual recognition, via treaties, however 2023 brought changes, via the adoption of the 1933 Montevideo Convention, which states that nations with physical land claims, a population, and an economy are automatically recognized as sovereign nations.

Economy

The Draculian Economy is based off the Draculian Mark. Currently, the Draculian Mark is valued at the amount of gold purchased by the Draculian Government, marked at a USD price. Dracul currently uses its online gift shop to sell goods and services, such as novelty banknotes, citizenship certificates, shirt buttons, and flags. The gift shop makes up 98% of Dracul's income, with the other 2% made by penalties and internet services sold to Draculian Officials.

Defense

The Department of Defense currently consists of the Dracul Army and Air Corps.

Originally created to provide a military-style structure for those interested in a disciplined regimen and ceremonial services, it underwent reform to provide national security for the Commonwealth. The current Secretary of Defense is Scott Jeanes.

Army

The Army of Dracul is considered the foundation of Dracul's national defense with contributions to defense reform and restructure. The Army provides Dracul with a standing defensive posture on the ground and deterrent to hostilities. The Army currently consists of an Officer Corps and enlisted personnel and provides instruction at the Prezan Military Academy. The Army is currently commanded by Field Marshal Scott Jeanes.[3]

Prezan Military Academy

Dracul Military (left to right; Army, Navy, Air Patrol) at Nicholas II Parade, 2021

The Prezan Military Academy, named after Constantin Prezan of the Romanian Army, was created to provide training to Dracul's military personnel. PMA oversees the Officer Candidate School (OCS), ROTC, JROTC, and offers the Joint Training Program (JTP) to Foreign Military Personnel for basic military knowledge and a formal training regimen. Prezan Military Academy is the "crown jewel" of the Department of Defense.

Air Corps

The Dracul Army Air Corps is the aviation component of the Dracul Army providing flight operations and technical abilities to the military. Some of their duties are weather monitoring, air traffic control, drone operations, among others. The Army Air Corps is commanded by 2nd Lieutenant Bruce Cooper.

Conflicts/Engagements

Dracul rarely participates in conflicts, especially when conflict is avoidable. There have been up to three incidents in which Dracul felt it was unable to avoid entry into. The most notable one was the Rebel Conflict of 2018, which resulted in Victory Day being created as a national holiday. For the most part, Dracul has a distaste for the term "micronational war", since its connotation is normally linked with younger micronationalists engaging with airsoft or fabricating war stories.

Dracul Rebel Conflict of 2018

On 15 April 2018, Intelligence Director Al Fare released a public statement condemning religious peoples, citing his atheist views as a reason to target and discriminate against religion. The Federal Government shortly after sent a letter to Al Fare, informing him of his inappropriate actions and that assistance would not be rendered to him. On 20 April, a small force was formed under the name "Dracul Confederacy", which was led by Fare, to begin the mission of targeting religious peoples. The Federal Government mobilized and cut off resources and communications between Al Fare and the rest of the Commonwealth. A GIF war was started in a private chat, between Al Fare and members of the Dracul Armed Forces. Al Fare eventually gave up on the 9 May 2018, signaling a victory for the people of Dracul. Al Fare was found guilty of terrorism and his citizenship was revoked. While simulations did take place during the conflict, Al Fare made it clear that his Atheist views were to be taken seriously, which resulted in defensive measures being taken by the Fed.

Bran Action of 2021

In March 2021, the Dracul Army was deployed to Bran District as part of a declaration of Martial Law. Several members of the City Council were found guilty of abusing their powers of office and corruption. In response the President, Dmitri Howie, agreed with officials and commanders to declare Martial Law on the District. Brigadier General Scott Jeanes assigned Colonel Connor Modena as Military Governor of the region tasked with securing and reestablishing the government. As of 16 July 2021, the city charter and a new rules and procedures document were signed and approved by the President and elections were held.

Dracul-Graustarkian Affair

On 5 September 2021, the Commonwealth of Dracul declared an information war on the Graustark-Dawsbergen Principality, after Draculian Vice President Stephen Luke discovered that former Draculian citizen Charles von Graustark was spying on the Draculian government for the Graustark-Dawsbergian government. This was then clarified as an investigation, along with a wargame perspective for the allies of Dracul. Since then, relations have improved, especially with Graustark's former leadership.

Small Business

A 2022 Series Currency Note

Businesses belonging to Dracul citizens, as well as non-citizens, that operate within the Commonwealth are approved and regulated by the Small Business Administration. This process typically consists of an application, which is either approved or denied by the SBA. Once approved, the business is listed as Draculian business, advertised and promoted by the SBA. Currently, there are no forms of fees or taxes on Draculian approved businesses. Certain licenses, however, are required for operating specific businesses.

One of Dracul's largest, most active businesses is its television station, which produces content for live events, emergencies, and weather information. These broadcasts are typically released on the KBRN Dracul 1 YouTube Channel.

Geography, climate, and environment

The Commonwealth's geography mostly consists of grassy terrain with sparse woodlands and two bodies of water; these being a man-made fountain known as the Unity Fountain and a small reservoir known as Horsepen Bayou. The country consists of the two states of North Dracul and South Dracul; the latter of which houses Dracul's capital city of Bran District.

Climate data for Dracul
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 16
(61)
18
(64)
21
(70)
25
(77)
28
(82)
31
(88)
33
(91)
33
(91)
30
(86)
26
(79)
21
(70)
17
(63)
25
(77)
Average low °C (°F) 7
(45)
9
(48)
13
(55)
16
(61)
20
(68)
23
(73)
24
(75)
24
(75)
22
(72)
17
(63)
12
(54)
9
(48)
15
(59)
Source: www.usclimatedata.com (data from 1985–2015)

Territorial claims

The Commonwealth of Dracul is made up of two states, two territories, and a federal district which serves as the nation's capital and seat of governance. Small scale devolved powers are handed to Dracul's many subdivisions and varying degrees of autonomy are exercised by them. Territories are typically approved by the Draculian Parliament, along with the Department of State. Most territories operate independently and are represented during national parliament sessions.

Name Established Capital Notes
Federal Districts
Bran District 5 July 2020 Self Serves as capital of Dracul and the smallest by land size
States
South Dracul 1 February 2018 Moldavia Oldest of the two states
North Dracul 2 February 2018 Fort Howie Second state created and largest by land size
Current/Former Territories
Breco Territory 20 September 2021 Rezninsk Declared independence, 7 May 2022
Dissolved, 19 September 2022
Readmitted, January 2023
Las Verdes Colinas 14 July 2021 Darvin First territory admitted to Dracul
Gifted to Raphania, 24 June 2022

Culture

(from left to right) Luke Gauthier, Eric Harvey Williams, Jr, Whisper Williams, Stephen Luke, Charles Ross, and Mark Millner, at the Tsar Nicholas II parade in Bran District, Dracul.

The culture of Dracul is primarily of Western origin, but its influences include European peoples and their cultures. Dracul has its own distinct social and cultural characteristics, such as social habits, cuisine, and folklore. Dracul is ethnically diverse as a result of large-scale European and Asian citizenship throughout its history. Dracul is an Anglophone country with a legal system derived from Anglo-American common law.

Demographics

The Commonwealth has a diverse pool of citizens consisting of all walks of life. The majority of citizens are un-married, and the nation is predominantly male. Regardless, many women are members of Dracul and contribute meaningfully to the day-to-day running of the nation; additionally, the country has several natural born citizens, born to Draculian mothers.

Food

Typical Western food that can also be found among Draculians, such as barbeque, beans, and sausage

Mainstream Draculian cuisine is similar to that in other Western countries. Wheat is the primary cereal grain with about three-quarters of grain products made of wheat flour and many dishes use indigenous ingredients, such as turkey, venison, potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, squash, and maple syrup which were consumed by Native Americans and early European settlers. These homegrown foods are part of a shared national menu on Dracul's most popular holidays. Characteristic dishes such as apple pie, fried chicken, pizza, hamburgers, and hot dogs derive from the recipes of various immigrants. French fries, Mexican dishes such as burritos and tacos, and pasta dishes freely adapted from Italian sources are widely consumed. Draculians drink three times as much coffee as tea.

Religion

While Dracul is a secular nation on a governmental level, the majority of citizens observe some form of spirituality or structured religion, with the largest being Christians. The second largest group are Atheists, followed by Hindus, Muslims, then Jews as the smallest group. Presently, the only structured church system is the Church of Dracul, which is Christian non-denominational, with traditional values, such clergy titles (i.e. Father, Bishop), apparel, and religious holidays.

External links

References