Emergent Theodia

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The "emergent" period of Theodian history is considered to have begun with Theodia's return to intermicronational politics in early 2020, and is still on-going; which means this period of Theodian history has occurred entirely within the Modern era of the MicroWiki community.

2020 global crisis

Response to pandemic

Theodia carefully monitored the Coronavirus Crisis right from the moment it reared its head internationally: in January. Swena tried to convince Theodians of the gravity of the situation, and encouraged people to buy N95 masks, which were even then already sold-out across much of the world. Swena started advocating work-from-home at the beginning of March.

On 12 March 2020, with most Theodians living in parts of the US about to be particularly hard-struck by COVID-19, Swena declared a nationwide lockdown[1] that would start at midnight on the 13th. This decision was ahead of popular Georgia opinion, and was ridiculed by some non-citizens. This followed a week of Swena publicly warning about the seriousness of the pandemic. This sentiment was repeated in an internal Discord channel on 17 March.

On 28 March 2020, Theodia additionally announced temporary moratoriums on rent payments, loan payments/interest, and the demurrage tax.[2]

On 27 April 2020, after 45 days (half the length of a fiscal quarter) Theodia officially ended its nationwide lockdown, citing the unfeasibility of permanent siege,[3] something Swena had been pointing out from the start[4].

Reflections on pandemic

Theodia would never have allowed this disease to spawn in the first place, since (1) wet markets would have been made very illegal were they ever to appear in Theodia and (2) gain-of-function research would never have been allowed; as well, (3) Theodia would have properly responded to reports of a local SARS outbreak, instead of silencing doctors and holding communal feasts -- indeed, doctors themselves would be the ones in-charge of directing policy for this matter. Swena repeatedly, and on occasion publicly, laid the blame for the original pandemic squarely at the feet of the Chinese Communist Party.

Swena repeatedly advocated for the South-Korean model: test as many people as possible, and quarantine any positives. Swena stated in official capacity that national quarantines are comparable to sieges and cannot last forever; and that these lockdowns (most of which could have been avoided) should be used as a chance to stabilize the epidemic and build up enough testing capacity to fight the disease without indefinite quarantine.[4][3] Swena also expressed concern that some smaller, poorer countries may have no choice but to weather the pandemic with little public health intervention.

As Theodia did not have the resources to test people, and given that the disease was nearing the point of no-containment in Theodian-occupied areas; Swena opted for a strict, nation-wide quarantine of undetermined length as the next-best thing to the South-Korean model. This lockdown was ultimately maintained for a month and a half, but its continuation eventually became unfeasible, and so it was ended.

This crisis led to Theodian officials taking a deep and hard look into China, and discovering some pretty horrible things. Relations between the two countries have since deteriorated substantially.

Reflections on global economic downturn

Swena began noticing the similarities between 2020 and 2010, when Theodia was founded. Se realized Theodia was, in many ways, a product of the Great Recession, and began to speculate that, with mass failures of public institutions in the US and elsewhere, Theodia (and other micronations) may experience a resurgence of activity, stating that "Discontent breeds action; satisfaction breeds complacency".

Reactions to global economic downturn

Starting in April, Swena pushed to increase the number of citizens and, crucially, interactions between them; noting that although there were many Theodians, there was little Theodia, and that they needed to try to catalyze a community. Accordingly, Swena overhauled the Theodian Discord using what se had learned administrating other Discord channels, and once again began courting skilled citizens for possible roles in government.

Wiki updates

Swena became active again, and started renovating Theodia's MicroWiki articles, starting in March with the history articles; but spilling over into others, as well. At the start of May, a year of missed updates were finally added to the Theodic script article; and more are on the way for the Theodian language article.

At the end of May, Swena added Theodia to numerous list articles; and even contributed significantly to the Wiki as a whole, revitalizing many categories and enhancing the edit-count tracker. This editing spree continued through the end of June; and similar edits persisted (at a lower frequency) for the remainder of the year, ending in January 2021.

As a part of this work, and per request, Swena unearthed and uploaded for posterity the various surviving fragments of GOV from 2011-2013.

Cultural/linguistic advancements

Unhappy with the inadequacies of the previous national calendar, Swena on 28 March began sweeping calendar reforms. These were then put off until a future date, to better-focus on other priorities; then resumed on 9 November; and finally finished on 15 November. The new system is capable of generating regular calendars for all locations in the known universe, as well as converting between them.

Cadin became Theodia's first minister of Architecture, and began creating a Theodian school of architecture which is intended to combine many of the best aspects of other schools of architecture.

A new philosophical / religious movement began in Theodia on the 30th of March: Philosophism.

In May, the different styles of the Theodic Script were reorganzed into "classes", and the Class-3 (binary) styles were reworked to be more-schematic. In December, /ɨ/ was finally made a vowel in Theodian, after years of resistance; thus making the vowel inventory and overall phoneme inventory perfect squares, and fixing a long-time inconsistency in the language's phonology.

Intermicronational relations

In March, Theodia initiated talks with another micronation (the then-Kingdom of Sovermia) for the first time since the passing of Axel Nielson in 2012. These talks finally ended in a formal establishment of relations in mid-May.

On 1 April 2020, Theodia signed a treaty of mutual recognition with the Jusin Republic, Theodia's first such treaty in nearly a year.

On 28 April, Theodia got its first Minister of Foreign Affairs since Min Naroba in 2014: Skerdsala. At Swena's request, Skerdsala applied for Theodian membership in the GUM; this was approved on 27 May. Theodia was accepted as a full member in the GUM on 18 June, and this was the first time that Theodia had fully ascended to such an organization since mid-2011.

Some additional plans were put into place to increase Theodia's diplomatic soft power, and Skerdsala made some significant progress on some of them; most notably, a document designed to walk other micronationalists through the creation of conlangs.

However, life circumstances required Skerdsala to step down from ser position; and by 27 June, all foreign affairs work had de facto fallen to Swena. Swena thenafter fulfilled for Theodia all that was required of a GUM delegation.

2021 re-alignment

Withdrawal from the GUM

After almost a full year of membership in the GUM, it became clear that Theodia had little to gain by continuing membership in the organization; and such membership had clear costs in time and effort that Swena believed to be better-spent on internal development. On April 13th, Theodia announced its immediate withdrawal from the GUM, to become effective at 0:00 EDT the next day. Coinciding with this withdrawal was the withdrawal of Theodian ministers from most micronational Discord groups. Theodia's approach to international affairs accordingly shifted away from participation in major organizations, to targeted relations with select partners. Alongside Theodia's withdrawal from the GUM, came the removal of implicit recognition for members of the organization -- a change to what had been a long-lasting policy.

Swena had originally planned to perform this withdrawal later in the month; but decided to move the date up in response to some recurring bullying and drama in the GUM Politan. Said drama culminated in Elizabeth Lewis ordering Swena to kill hirmself. While Elizabeth was expelled from the organization for doing so; the behaviours witnessed by the Theodian delegation within the less-formal portions of the GUM in general were quite underwhelming, and were a determining factor in Theodia's choosing to completely leave the organization instead of simply downgrading to observer status.

These events created something of a rift between Theodia and those in the New Virginian sphere.

Good Article nominations

Swena's decade-long plan to wait until articles were essentially perfect before seeking Good Article status (so that the GA-tagged revision of the article would be maximally enviable) came to an abrupt end with Indradhanush's surprise nomination of Theodia for Good Article status. With the old policy of waiting no longer being tenable given that Theodia's main article was soon to be promoted, Swena began the process of nominating Theodia's other high-quality articles for GA status. It is hoped that these nominations will encourage more people to learn about, and potentially get involved in, Theodia.

Theodian language was restored to GA status, and Theodia was approved for GA but failed the Featured Article vote and so got neither. Swena thenafter campaigned for an overhaul of MicroWiki's Good Article nomination process, and this was met with complete success. However, even though the overhaul motion was successful, Swena has as-yet neglected to nominate any more articles for GA status.

Government

On 29 April, Swena deprecated ministries in favor of legislative juries, and populated them with Theodia's citizenry in accordance with their credentials, in a facsimile of how sortition will work when properly codified in legislation. This is the single largest expansion of Theodian government to-date, and has most citizens holding some government post.

Foreign relations

Theodia signed several treaties of mutual recognition following its departure from the GUM; the first with Vishwamitra in late April, the second with Vyomania in August, and the last with New Athens in October. The treaty with New Athens was unique, as it was the first time Theodia had signed a treaty of recognition in-person. During the signing, photos were taken and an entire Peking Duck was split between the two delegations.

Embassy

In early October, Swena began the process of establishing a physical embassy in the United States of America. By early December, the process was complete; and Theodia had opened its first brick-and-mortar embassy, located in Cumming, Georgia and staffed with a permanently-domicile ambassador (Swena hirmself).

2022

COVID re-evaluation

In early January, Theodia designated the "delta" and "omicron" variants "COVID-20" and "COVID-21", respectively. While the Theodian government was still recommending citizens wear masks in populated places during COVID-20, the government has made no special arrangements for COVID-21, considering it to be an extension of the normal flu season. Theodia expects a COVID-22 later in the year.

Grand opening of the embassy

A number of prominent Theodian citizens and close friends of Swena attended a unique rendezvous at the newly-opened Theodian embassy to the USA, on 15 January. A micronational open house is expected to occur later in the year.

Gender & inheritance rework

Theodia's extremely long-standing policy of more-or-less pretending sex and gender don't exist came to an end on 25 Jan 2022, after months of deliberation. The new gender system uses dual-inheritance (agnatic for men, enatic for women), and implements two mostly overlapping "tracks" that people may choose from (with people defaulting to one or the other per their birth sex).

The family system was also reworked at this time, albeit less-dramatically. The "familial corporation" system devised in mid-2021 was implemented, but this merely provided a legal framework for the country's existing expectation of mass-polyamory.

Surnames were also reimplemented, having been absent from the country since the naming reform of 2012. These are unchangeable, and passed strictly per Y chromosome and mtDNA.

Culinary rework

Also on 25 January came an update to the country's cuisine and beverage habits. This was mostly a direct outgrowth of the previous, but with some noticeable refactoring. Of particular note is the adoption of coca tea as the afternoon stimulant, in addition to the pre-existing morning matcha/coffee. Small beer was also made an everyday beverage. The standard number of meals was reduced from 3 to 2, and sandwiches took a backseat in the process.

Rebranding

After years of small, sparingly-given hints given since at least 2018, Swena finally announced that, on 22 April 2022, Theodia would be renamed to "Aethodia". This commemorates Theodia's 10th (twelfth) anniversary, and resolves some issues with the original name: multiple other uses exist for "Theodia" and "Theodian" (and several people have the name "Theodia"); as well, the necessary Internet domains were not available for purchase. Swena wanted the new name to alphabetize well in most alphabets, in order to increase the odds that people would be exposed to the country in long lists; to be aesthetic; to be three syllables (so that it works as a crowd chant in sports games); and to be visually and auditorily identifiable as a derivative of the original name. "Aethodia" was what was ultimately chosen. It moves the "e" left of the "th", and adds an "a" at the start; it also hearkens back to Theodia's original Old English roots (in some sense), as it can alternatively be written with the letter Æsc: "Æþōdia", from the original "Þēodia". Etymologically, it can be seen as blending "æthēr" with "þēod" and "-ia", meaning something roughly along the lines of "Ethereal Nationia", or more wordily: "a nation out of this world".

MicroCon 2022

An Aethodian delegation is officially registered for MicroCon 2022, where there will be a display table dedicated to the country. This delegation will be sharing quarters with the delegation from the United Republic of Obscurium.

See also

References