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Rheinbund

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OOC: There are quite a lot of news sources in the Rheinbund. Here is a list.

Newspapers

Many newspapers and magazines are printed and sold in Rheinbund, mainly on a regional basis. Most Rheinians have a subscription on one or more newspapers, either over the Internet or on paper. Newspapers sold nationally are the Spiegel des Tages, the Fehrbelliner Zeitung, the Weissenfelser Rundschau, the Kölner Zeitung, the Bremer Allgemeine (all centrist), the Weltblick (conservative and rightwing), the Volkszeitung (leftwing), the Wahrheit (communist) and Schau! (tabloid)..


Broadcasting network

Radio stations


All Rheinian radio stations broadcast over the LW, MW, SW and FM bands, as well as over the satellites.

Broadcasters (state-owned):
– Rheinbundfunk (news sender, broadcasting on both FM (Rheinbund only) and AM (inside and outside Rheinbund)).
– Radio Rheinbund 1 (news and non-classic music), 2 (entertainment and non-classic music), 3 (classic music) and 4 (focus on young public).
– Nordrheinischer Rundfunk (regional news, entertainment and non-classic music).
– Ostrheinischer Rundfunk (regional news, entertainment and non-classic music).
– Mittelrheinischer Rundfunk (regional news, entertainment and non-classic music).
– Westrheinischer Rundfunk (regional news, entertainment and non-classic music).
– Südwestrheinischer Rundfunk (regional news, entertainment and non-classic music).
– Südostrheinischer Rundfunk (regional news, entertainment and non-classic music).

There are also commercial radio broadcasters, among others:
– RFR (Radio und Fernsehen Rheinbund; radio and television broadcaster): This company employs the senders RFR (entertainment and non-classic music), RFR Nachrichten (news), Energie Radio (focusing on young people) and Klassisch Radio (classic music).
– SatRadio: This sender is part of the company SatRundfunk. It started broadcasting when Rheinbund’s first communication satellite was launched. Initially, it only broadcasted over the satellite, but when it realised that it would not reach the car radios and the radios not connected to the cable network or satellite receivers in that way, it started broadcasting on the FM net as well. The senders it employs are SatRadio1 (news), SatRadio 2 (entertainment and non-classic music), SatRadio 3 (classic music) and SatRadio 4 (focusing on young people).
– Many other radio broadcasters which do not operate nationwide but only in one province or one city (this only happens in the cities Fehrbellin, Bremen, Lübeck, Köln, Ingelheim and Weissenfels).

All radio senders broadcast 24 hours per day, although the regional senders do not employ DJs but only broadcast music and the news bulletins from Radio Rheinbund 1 between midnight and 6am.


Television stations

All Rheinian television senders broadcast both over the satellites and over the UHF Bands IV and V.

Broadcasters (state owned):
– Erstes Rheinisches Fernsehen.
– Zweites Rheinisches Fernsehen.
– Nordrheinischer Rundfunk.
– Ostrheinischer Rundfunk.
– Mittelrheinischer Rundfunk.
– Westrheinischer Rundfunk.
– Südwestrheinischer Rundfunk.
– Südostrheinischer Rundfunk.

The radio station RFR also works as a television station. It broadcasts the senders RFR 1 (mainly sports and entertainment) and RFR 2 (mainly movies, series, documentaries and the more sophisticated talkshows). The SatRundfunk-owned television station SatTV follows the same approach (SatTV 1 for mainly sports and entertainment, SatTV2 for mainly movies, series, documentaries and more sophisticated talkshows). EnergieTV is RFR’s music sender (mainly broadcasting videoclips), and VideoMusic is SatRundfunk’s music sender (also mainly broadcasting videoclips).
 
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Rheinbund

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King becomes unwell after birth of his child

The press department of Schloss Schöneweide just announced that the King became unwell while he was in hospital to support his wife during the birth of his youngest son. The King's status is stable, and he is conscious; however, he is currently under examination.
The press department of Schloss Schöneweide also announced the names of the King's son: Lukas Harald Kasimir.
 

Rheinbund

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24JAN2022
King falls into coma after cerebral haemorrhage


As announced by the press department of Schloss Schöneweide, King Johannes, who is still hospitalised, suffered from a cerebral haemorrhage. He is currently in a coma, but his condition is stable. Last week Sunday, the King already collapsed while he was in hospital to support his wife, who was in labour of their second child. Schloss Schöneweide did not give any information on the King's health status, but only announced that the King would remain in hospital to be investigated further. He was still in hospital when he suffered from his stroke.


26JAN2022
Sovereign Ferdinand von Detmold-Liepen sworn in as Regent for King Johannes


During a ceremony at Schloss Schöneweide, Ferdinand von Detmold-Liepen, Sovereign of Detmold, was sworn in as Regent for King Johannes. As per the Rheinian constitution, the oldest Kurfürst becomes the Regent when the King cannot govern. This is an automated process after which the Regent can already take up the King's daily duties, but he needs to be sworn in to obtain the power to appoint government members and accept the credentials of new ambassadors.
Meanwhile, Schloss Schöneweide gave another update on the King's health: The King is still in coma; his situation is unchanged since last Monday.
 

Justosia

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Foreign Ministry
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Public Communique


I am deeply saddened to hear of the health of His Majesty. I am further saddened that relations between our respective nations aren't better. Both have more in common I believe, than we know. His Excelencia shares these sentiments. He hopes for stronger relations in the future.

Fernando Guzman
Foreign Minister
 

Rheinbund

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—————————————————————
Bund der rheinischen Fürstentümer und Bürgerschaften
—————————————————————​


Auswärtiges Amt
Fehrbellin, Rheinbund


Public Communiquée

I thank the Justosian Minister of Foreign Affairs Guzman for his kind words. We are definitely open for improving the relations between the Rheinbund and Justosia. I would like to meet with you to discuss the possibilities.

Gustav Kohlschreiber, Minister of Foreign Affairs
 
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Rheinbund

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Transcript from a radio bulletin

Günther Ziesche (VU): "Chancellor Lauritzen is a people traitor"

During an election event in Würzwald, Günther Ziesche, the political leader of the far-right Volksunion, formulated a lot of criticism towards Chancellor Lauritzen and his government. He vehemently criticised the fact that the Rheinbund stayed out of the Pannonian Civil War, instead of what he called "supporting our fellow Germanics against the Frankish and the Csengians". He stated that "the Bourdignians, Leuthonians and Thüringäuer are squeezed by the Frankish and the Tarusans, and Chancellor Lauritzen is doing nothing". He went even as far as calling Chancellor Lauritzen a "Volksverräter", a traitor of the people. He added to it that "the Rheinbund cannot hide itself behind its neutral façade when our brother people are threatend".
Ziesche also had a remark towards the family Von Heidemar-Loorburg, the sovereign family of Lotharingen. Pointing at Prince Ludwig's homosexuality, he said that "a Fürst who cannot control his own children is not eligible to succede to the throne of the Rheinbund", making clear that he would oppose Fürst Albrecht von Heidemar-Loorburg as King of the Rheinbund.
 

Rheinbund

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28FEB2022
ALAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAF! Carnival in Rheinbund


It's the time of the year again. Carnival. Celebrated one way or another in all Catholic parts of the Rheinbund, but especially in Eastern Wetterau, Ripuarian and Northern Ruppertswald. Rosenmontag is traditionally the day of the cavalcades. And of course both local and national and international matters are the objects to make jokes about.
The Pannonian civil war is a very big topic in this year's cavalcades. A cart in Mainbad showed the Frankish emperor playing with Patois puppets. A cart in Eschweiler showed the same, but then with the Tarusan emperor playing with Csengian puppets. A cart in Cöllen showed the relationship between the HFE, Tarusa, the Patois and Csengia: The Frankish and Tarusan emperors were taking their dogs out for a walk, but the dog of the Tarusan emperor was actually the queen of Csengia on hands and knees, and the dog of the Frankish emperor was the leader of the Patois republic on hands and knees. Another cart in Cöllen showed the Tarusan emperor as a dompteur with a large whip taming the queen of Csengia. A cart in Grefrath showed the Tarusan and Frankish emperors tearing Pannonia apart. A cart in Grevenbreuch showed the Tarusan emperor trying to squeeze Ostmark. A cart in Dinslaken showed the Tarusan emperor chasing the Lethonians and the Thüringäuer.
But also El Presidente was used as a topic. A cart in Mainbad showed him with a big smile, a cocktail in one hand and a cigar in the other. Similar carts were seen in other cities. Tonight will be the night of the Cöllener Session. Tomorrow will be the last day of Carnival 2022. The festivities will stop at midnight. Ash Wednesday will be a day of reflection, and of course the start of the Lenten period until Easter. The pubs will be closed on that day.

Transcripts of the Cöllener Session

"The Lethonian and Thüringäuer missiles. Of course. They probably thought: 'Better a missile in the garden than a Tarusan in the kitchen.'"

Laughter.

"And now the Tarusans and the Frankish are upset. The Frankish because they can't do another landgrab without getting some chemicals and strange bacteria in return, and the Tarusans because they are not the only ones with such weapons any more."

Laughter.

"It must have been detrimendous to the Tarusans to see that somebody is capable of the same thirst for blood as them."

Laughter.

....

"Now I am asking myself one thing. If Monkey Boa would have written its Jumping Circus now instead of 50 years ago, would it still have been 'NO-body expects the Sollegan inquisition', or would it have been 'NO-body expects the Csengian inquisition'?"

OOC: I did want to write SOMETHING about carnival. Therefore, a post from two weeks ago.
 
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Rheinbund

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Raimer holds its promise: 1000 km with the ER-Future

A drive from Lörrach to Fehrbellin. From the South to the North. Raimer chose a route between those cities that was 1000 km long, and drove its electric concept car ER-Future over that route. The driver managed to complete the route without having to recharge the car. It was the first time that the ER-Future drove on public roads. The route went through the Rheinian Alps, with temperatures close to and sometimes below 0 centigrades, and often steep roads to conquer. After the trip, the computer indicated that there was 140 km range left. The average speed during the trip was 87 km/h, and sometimes the 140 km/h was hit.
Raimer claimed before that it should be possible to make electric cars with 1000 km range, and has delivered the proof now. It has done so with a car that is filled with all kinds of innovations that will be found back in other models as well. The most important factor in this achievement is a very low drag coefficient of 0.17. Furthermore, the car was constructed as light as possible. The battery pack is about 2/3 of the one in the ER800. It is not a solid-state battery but a conventional Lithium-Ion battery that uses an extremely high voltage of 900 Volt. The car is also equipped with a solar panel in the roof, providing an additional range of 25 km.
Raimer indicated that it wants to introduce a car in the compact class using all the techniques in the ER-Future within three years.


Darner Werke builds factory for solid state batteries

In a press release earlier today, the Rheinan car manufacturer Darner announced that it is going to build a factory for solid state batteries. The factory in question will be a so-called pilot-line factory to test out production lines. It is the longer-term intention to use solid-state batteries in electric vehicles instead of the current Lithium-Ion batteries, because solid-state batteries have a higher energy density and are safer than Lithium-Ion batteries.
As a result of the government's intention to forbid the sale of cars with combustion engines from 2035 onwards, the Rheinian car industry is focussing hard on developing electric cars, but also hydrogen-powered cars, the latter especially for frequently used vehicles like trucks, buses, taxis, police cars and ambulances.
 

Rheinbund

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25APR2022
National elections: Far-right Volksunion continues advance; coalition looses seats but keeps majority


The results of yesterday’s elections for the Bundesversammlung, the national parliament of the Rheinbund, have been confirmed. The numbers of seats to be assigned to each memberstate have been determined, based on the number of cast valid votes per memberstate and overall. Bramsfeld and Detmold lost one seat each, and Heilbach and Wetterau gained one seat each. The following table shows the number of seats per province.

Badenau: 48 seats
Bramsfeld: 47
Casparringen: 31
Detmold: 31
Emsland: 30
Heilbach: 36
Lotharingen: 87
Ripuarien: 71
Ruppertswald: 30
Sauerland: 67
Scharmbeckerland: 35
Sigmaringen: 59
Spessart: 59
Thorsringen: 46
Tirolstein: 30
Wetterau: 93


The results do not spectacularly differ from those of two years ago. The far-right Volksunion is continuing its advance at the expense of the Sociodemocratic RSP, which more and more sees its original constituency go to the Volksunion, attracted by the latter party’s promises to increase their wages and their position in society. Also the Christiandemocratic CDV lost votes to the Volksunion, but this loss could have been more dramatic if the Volksunion would have played better cards in the issue of the Rheinbund’s neutrality in Former Pannonia. It was clear that Günther Ziesche wasn’t able to find the right arguments because of conflicting interests. On the one hand, the Volksunion favours Tarusan politics, so the formation of Csengia was according to the Volksunion’s preferences. On the other hand, the Lethonians and the Thüringäuer, who are Germanics, were clear targets of the HFE and the Tarusans. Ziesche wasn’t able to turn that into a successful argument against Chancellor Lauritzen’s CDV, leaving the latter’s loss of votes limited.
Another striking result is the seat gain of the Anarcho-collectivist AKA, whose votes almost doubled compared with 2020. The reason may have been El Presidente’s visit to the Rheinbund two months ago, which may have sparked an increase in the AKA’s popularity.
The election results are like the following.

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The current coalition between CDV, RSP and LDP kept its majority. It is according to the expectancies that this coalition will continue. Tomorrow the political leaders of all the parties that won seats in the Bundesversammlung will be received by the Regent. Then a Koalitionsverhandlungsleiter will be appointed, who will lead the coalition negotiations.


26APR2022
Regent appoints Minister a.D. Philipp Neubauer as Koalitionsverhandlungsleiter


Regent Ferdinand von Detmold-Liepen appointed Minister a.D. Philipp Neubauer as Koalitionsverhandlungsleiter today. His order is to form a coalition between CDV, RSP and LDP. Minister a.D. immediately received the political leaders of the CDV, RSP and LDP (Chancellor Hans-Georg Lauritzen , Minister of Finance Wilhelm Pfeiffer and Minister of Internal Affairs Andreas Veltheim, respectively) to discuss the negotiations path. From tomorrow onwards, a new coalition agreement will be negotiated by several teams in parallel, in which each team negotiates about one or two topics (e.g. internal affairs and justice, or foreign affairs and defence).
 

Rheinbund

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04MAY2022
CDV, RSP and LDP agree on coalition agreement


During a press conference at Schloss Schöneweide, Koalitionsverhandlungsleiter Minister a.D. Philipp Neubauer, political leader of the CDV Demissionary Chancellor Hans-Georg Lauritzen, political leader of the RSP Demissionary Minister Wilhelm Pfeiffer and political leader of the LDP Demissionary Minister Andreas Veltheim announced that they closed a coalition agreement. After the new Minister team has been formed, the Bundesversammlung will be asked to choose Hans-Georg Lauritzen as Chancellor again.
The new coalition agreement is in many parts a continuation of the old one. A long-lasting wish of the Sociodemocratic RSP to combine the first three classes of secondary education so that all secondary school pupils up to age fifteen are in the same class was not honoured again; instead, fruit and vegetables will be exempt from VAT, and the sin taxes on sugar, unhealthy food and tobacco will be raised. Furthermore, cannabis will be legalised.
The coalition agreement also emphasises the Rheinbund’s neutrality: “The only area on Europe where the Rheinbund has a say on and where Rheinian Law is applicable, is the sovereign territory of the Rheinbund, the territorial waters of the Rheinbund, the ships in international waters sailing under Rheinian Flag and the planes in international airspace flying under Rheinian Flag. This principle is leading in Rheinian foreign politics, taking into account and respecting international treaties superseding Rheinian Law that were signed on behalf of and ratified by the Rheinbund.”
The task of the Rheinian armed forces will remain the same: Defending the homeland, taking part in humanitary missions under the flag of the European Forum, and conducting humanitary missions. A wish from the Sociodemocrats to abolish conscription and reduce the time of society service to one year will be studied. A leading wish from the Christiandemocrats is that the strength of the armed forces is not reduced, so a solution could be to partly replace the conscripts with professional soldiers. This would lead to a reduction of the size of the armed forces, but because a part of the conscripts would be replaced with professional soldiers, the strength would remain the same. A complicating factor in abolishing conscription would be, that two yeargroups would enter the universities and the job market at the same time, something that already happened twice in the last seven years, when society service was reduced from three to two years and the Lyzäum was reduced from seven to six years.
The status of the Ruppertswald, the Rheinbund’s sixty year old aircraft carrier, remains the same. Basically, this ship is only kept and maintained as testing platform for Daedalus Aviation to test the aircraft carrier capabilities of the Fallwind; it is not part of the Rheinbund’s defence strategy.
Soon after the coalition agreement became public, the education part was commented on. People among the RSP (and also among the Environmentalist Grün) have been criticising the current system for selecting children out already at age 12, as well the “elitarism of the Lyzäum as highest education level” because teachers at primary school would give children from higher social classes higher school advices than children from lover social classes. On the other hand, people from the CDV indicated that “there are enough ways to adjust for selection mistakes and late-bloomers: Graduates from the Realschule are allowed to continue at the 11th grade of the Lyzäum, and there are many pathways to get at the University even from the Berufsschule or from special education”. Also the argument about the school advices is countered: “The knowledge and skills of primary school pupils are tested in 6th grade, and also the results of those tests are taken into account for the decision on the secondary education level.”


06MAY2022
Hans-Georg Lauritzen chosen as Chancellor by Bundesversammlung


Today Regent Ferdinand von Detmold-Liepen and Koalitionsverhandlungsleiter Neubauer went to the Bundesversammlung to report about the outcome of the coalition negotiations. They ended their report with mentioning the new candidate ministers and state secretaries, and then the proposal to choose Hans-Georg Lauritzen as Chancellor. As per the tradition, all fractions have the right to shortly comment before the voting starts. Of course the coalition parties pleaded to vote in favour, and the oppostion parties pleaded to vote against. Günther Ziesche from the Volksunion took the opportunity to criticise that the coalition only consisted of parties who lost votes and that his own Volksunion, who “gained the highest amount of votes compared with the previous elections” was kept out of the coalition, and that actually none of the parties who gained votes compared with the previous election entered the coalition (“this is a coalition of losers”).
Then the voting process started. The result was 425 votes in favour and 375 votes against.
After the vote results had been announced, the chairman of the Bundesversammlung asked: “Herr Demissionarkanzler Lauritzen, nehmen Sie die Wahl an?” (Demissionary Chancellor Lauritzen, do you accept the vote result?). Lauritzen answered: “Ja.” After that, Regent Ferdinand and the Chancellor went to Schloss Schöneweide, where the Regent took the oaths from the new ministers and state secretaries and appointed them.

The government-Lauritzen-II looks like the following:

Chancellor: Hans-Georg Lauritzen (CDV).
Minister of Internal Affairs and Vice-Chancellor: Wilhelm Pfeiffer (RSP).
Minister of Finance and Vice-Chancellor: Andreas Veltheim (LDP).
Minister of Foreign Affairs: Gustav Kohlschreiber (CDV).
Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries: Thomas Fluck (CDV).
Minister of Transport and Public Works: Kristine Ribbeck (CDV).
Minister of Education and Culture: Adeline Rohr (CDV).
Minister for Scientific Research Stimulation: Prof. Dr. Alexandra Schönau (CDV).
Minister of Labour and Social Affairs: Marina Dahles (RSP).
Minister of Environment, Housing and Country Planning: Rena Stahl (RSP).
Minister of Defence: Gerda Eisenberg (RSP).
Minister of Public Health and Welfare: Priv. Doz. Dr. Erich Weinbaum, Oberarzt (RSP).
Minister for Developmental Cooperation and International Aid: Aaron Tetzlaff (RSP).
Minister of Economic Affairs: Niklas Baumgarten (LDP).
Minister of Justice: Dr. Jasmin Grassmann (LDP).
 
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Rheinbund

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Bundesversammlung and Rat der Regierungen ratify treaty to found Meridian Sea Cooperation Program

The Government Lauritzen-II has conducted its first act. In parallel to the coalition negotiations, Minister Kohlschreiber discussed with the governments of Radilo and Ebria to found the Meridian Sea Cooperation Program (also known as the Meridian Union), an economic organisation facilitating free trade between its members, as well as free travel without the need of passports and visa, liberalisation of labour laws making it possible for citizens of the memberstates to look for jobs in the respective membercountries, and a student exchange program so that students can easily follow semesters in other countries.
This morning, the Bundesversammlung ratified the treaty on the Meridian Sea Cooperation Program, after which the Rat der Regierungen (a parliament consisting of representants of the governments of all the member states) ratified it as well.
The founding of the Meridian Sea Cooperation Program is an important step for the Rheinbund. It creates a large internal market with two of its most important trading partners.
 

Rheinbund

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Accident in Autostadt power plant sparks discussions on nuclear power plants in Rheinbund

Rheinbund is to a large extent dependent on nuclear power for its electricity. About 50% of its electricity comes from nuclear power plants, and legislation from the centre-right Von-Seydewitz-governments to increase this to 70% is still standing. This as part of an effort to phase out the use of fossil fuels for electricity generation. But the accident in the Autostadt power plant in Ostmark initiated discussions on the use of nuclear power.
Prominent members of the ecologist party Grün as well as various environmental organisations see their fears about nuclear power confirmed: "Egal wie klein die Chance ist dass eine Kernzentrale hochgeht, wenn eine hochgeht, haben wir wirklich die Kacke am Dampfen. If the Autostadter power plants melts down, Ostmark will be uninhabitable for a couple of centuries, and also parts of Tarusa and Leuthonia. We have 50 nuclear reactors in the Rheinbund, so 50 potential Autostadt disasters. We should stop building new nuclear power plants and put more effort in wind, solar panels and hydro-electric power plants."
On the other hand, minister of Transport and Public Works Kristine Ribbeck is against phasing out nuclear power: "At this moment, wind, solar and hydro-electric cannot replace nuclear power. Our current focus has to remain on reducing the use of fossil fuels for electricity generation; only after that we can see whether we can reduce the use of nuclear power, but even then we still need new power plants for the near future. Furthermore, our power plants are from such a design that a major nuclear disaster is impossible here."
We asked Dr. Habil. Benjamin Senger from the Technische Universität Cöllen about Minister Ribbeck's statement about the safety of Rheinbund's nuclear power plants. He explained: "A nuclear power plant consists of nuclear material that is surrounded by a so-called moderator. Without that moderator, the chain reaction cannot continue. The Rheinian nuclear power plants all use water as moderator. If the reactor overheats, the water turns into steam and with that the moderator is gone. Without the moderator, the chain reaction comes to a halt. Therefore, the type of nuclear power plant in use in the Rheinbund will never suffer from a meltdown."
We also asked Dr. Habil. Senger about the Autostadter nuclear power plant. He explained: "That is a reactor from a different type. That is a light water graphite reactor. In that reactor type, graphite is used as a moderator. Here the risk of a meltdown does exist. Of course the control rods can be pushed completely in-between the nuclear material to stop the chain reaction, but there is no plan B if the control rods get stuck."
Meanwhile, parliament members of the RSP and the LDP are indicating that the Rheinbund should probably focus less on nuclear power and more on renewable power: "The power plants may be safe, but generate a lot of nuclear waste. We currently store that nuclear waste in closed confinements, but that is not a good long-term solution. We have a well-functioning industry in windmills, solar panels and hydro-electric installations, we can even generate electricity from tidal waves, we need to focus more on that."
Meanwhile, the Chancellery indicated that a team of firefighter and radiation experts will travel to Ostmark together with firefighting vehicles and other equipment to assist in fighting the fires in the Autostadt nuclear power plant.

OOC1: Translation of the German part: No matter how small the chance is that a nuclear power plant explodes, if one explodes, the shit really hits the fan.

OOC2: Some links on light water reactors, heavy water reactors and light water graphite reactors:
 

Rheinbund

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Rheinbund sends humanitarian aid to Azraq to handle refugee crisis

During a press conference at the Chancellery, Chancellor Lauritzen announced that the Rheinbund will send humanitarian aid to Azraq to assist in the refugee crisis. The Chancellor indicated that "this is a humanitary crisis that cannot be handled, and should not be handled, by Azraq alone. We will send two fully equipped field hospitals, as well as tents, nourishment, equipment to produce fresh water, and money. We will also assist in the resettlement of refugees." On a question from one of the journalists whether the Rheinbund would take up refugees as well, the Chancellor replied: "If we get a request to take up refugees, we will take up refugees. Let it be clear: Nobody becomes a refugee out of free will, always out of extreme circumstances. That is something we have to understand. Of course the Rheinbund alone cannot help everybody, but we will take up our share of the burden."
 

Rheinbund

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Satyrical program on the Rheinian television

“And now this news message. Bramsfeld is a bit extraordinary within the Rheinbund. For instance with the Sunday Rest. We all know that due to the Sunday Rest the fuel stations are closed in Bramsfeld every Sunday. As well as on the two Christmas Days, on Easter Monday, on Ascension Day, on Whit Monday and on Reformation Day. You are in really big trouble in Bramsfeld with an empty fuel tank on 24 December if this is a Sunday.”

Giggling from the public.

“Most Rheinians know about this, but foreigners need to be informed about this. The government does so by placing big signs on all roads leading to Bramsfeld to warn for the closure of Bramsfelder fuel stations on Sundays. In five languages even: In German, Engellish, Dutch, Bajoran and Serbovian. They start warning for that even 10 km before the Bramsfelder border, and even after the Bramsfelder border. There are fuel stations close before the border, so that people can quickly fill their tanks. Such signs align the Westermarker roads into Bramsfeld as well. But even then there are still people who get stuck without fuel on a Sunday in Bramsfeld. Mostly not the Rheinians; they are informed. Mostly not the Vrijpoorters, Westmarkers and Csengians, either; they also know about it. No, the usual suspects are the Frankish. They continuously brag about how well-educated they are and how good their education system is, but as soon as they leave the school benches, they forget their Engellish.”

Giggling from the public.

”Well, that’s what you get when you overdub all foreign TV programs instead of subtitling them, like we do.”

Giggling from the public.

“But lately some other usual suspects have been added to them: Tarusans. After the Tsar carved some puppets out of the remnants of Pannonia, he had to send some Tarusans there to control the situation. Sometimes those Tarusans travel into the Rheinbund. You would expect that the Westmarkers and Csengians had warned them about fuel stations in Bramsfeld on Sunday, but apparently that didn’t happen.
Dear Tarusans, we know that it is difficult to you, used as you are to only giving orders to your puppets and never listening to them, trained as you are to in general always only talk and never listen to anybody, but sometimes, SOMETIMES, it is really beneficial to listen to other people, also if they are your puppets.”

Laughter from the public.


OOC: Maybe good to explain: Bramsfeld is a very religious and very conservative memberstate of the Rheinbund. They are Calvinists from a very strict kind (a kind I RP as “reformated”).
 
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Rheinbund

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Fehrbellin
22JUN2022
King Johannes passed away


In a short speech on television and radio, as well as streamed on the national government's website, Chancellor Hans-Georg Lauritzen announced that King Johannes passed away this afternoon. Five months ago, on the day his youngest son was born, the King was admitted to hospital, where he was diagnosed with a lung carcinoma. Two days later, he suffered from a stroke after which he became unconscious.
King Johannes V was born as Johannes Helmut Peter Bergmann on 5 May 1967 in Osterholz, a small village in the Citizenry of Scharmbeck. He fulfilled his military service in the Navy from 1987 to 1989, and started to study economics at the Universität Scharmbeck afterwards. He graduated in 1996, and became a government official at the Oberpräfektur of Scharmbeckerland. He was chosen in the Bürgerschaftsrat of Scharmbeckerland in 2000. In 2004, he became Präfekt of public works. In those days, the Scharmbecker Seaport was suffering from deferred maintenance, administrative problems and financial problems. The cause was a power struggle within the seaport authorities. Bergmann intervened by first mediating between the members of the board of directors of the seaport authorities, and then by replacing the top. After that, he initiated and coordinated the seaport's big renovation. Six years later, the seaport had been turned into one of the most modern seaports in the world, and was making profits again.
In 2010, Bergmann was elected Bürgerschaftslegat. With his 43 years of age, he was the youngest Bürgerschaftslegat in 300 years. Two years later, he was elected King, as the 14th non-nobleman ever to be chosen, and the youngest man in 150 years. He reigned as King Johannes V.
The King's life was not always happy. His son died in an accident in 2013, and he divorced one year later. But then in 2016, het met his second wife, Aline Lanzinger. The couple married one year later, and another year later their daughter was born.
Chancellor Lauritzen indicated that Sovereign Ferdinand von Detmold-Liepen will remain Regent until a new King has been chosen. The Rheinbund will go into mourning until King Johannes's funeral. The festivities to celebrate the Rheinbund's 1100th anniversary, originally planned on 28 and 29 June, will be postponed; the public holidays will remain in place though.


24JUN2022
King's funeral on 2 July; election of new King on 4 July; 1100 years Rheinbund celebrations postponed to end of August


During his weekly press conference, Chancellor Lauritzen announced that King Johannes's funeral will take place on Saturday 2 July. He also indicated that the election of the new King will take place on Monday 4 July. Due to the Summer holidays, the coronation will not take place immediately; instead, it will be combined with the celebrations of 1100 years Rheinbund. It is the plan now to do the coronation on Thursday 25 August; then the celebrations of 1100 years Rheinbund will take place on 26 and 27 August.
 

Rheinbund

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04JUL2022
Kurfürstenkollegium fails to elect new King


The Rheinbund experienced a very rare event today: The Kurfürstenkollegium broke up without electing a new King. The last time that this happened was in 1580, as part of the religious tensions that led to the thirty-years-Rheinian-war. In contrast with 1580, the Rheinbund is not on the brink of a civil war, and there are no tensions between the memberstates. This makes it extra surprising that there appears so much disagreement between the Fürste, the Archbishop of Heilbach and the Legates about who should become King. In theory, Fürst Albrecht von Heidemar-Loorburg would be the best choice. He is popular among the Rheinians, he is not too old and Crown-Prince Friedrich is old enough to take up the regency of Lotharingen. There are not that many alternatives among the Fürste and the Legates. Fürst Gregor von Koblenz-Lahnstein would be the next-best alternative, but his son Crown-Prince Wilhelm hasn't even finished his studies yet. All other candidates are either too old, or too young leading to the situation that their eldest children are not old enough to take up a regency, or too ill, or women, or too controversial.
It is not known to the public what happened during the Kollegium. A King has to be elected with at least a 3/4 majority. This sometimes led to compromise-candidates, but it looks like the Kollegium could not even agree to that. Regent Fürst Ferdinand von Detmold-Liepen told during the press-conference afterwards that the Kollegium will gather a second time next week Tuesday.


OOC: The Rheinbund has a long and wild history. A history in which religion plays an important role. Originally, the Rheinian King's role was not only worldly, but also religious. It was also his task to guard Catholicism within the boundaries of the Rheinbund. This caused problems when the reformation took up speed, culminating in the thirty-years-Rheinian-war from 1580 to 1610. This war was a combination of a couple of civil wars in some of the memberstates and a war between the memberstates that had sticked to Catholicism and the memberstates that had switched to Lutheranism or Calvinism. The Peace of Ruppertswald brought freedom of religion to the Rheinbund; the King lost his task to guard Catholicism.
 

Rheinbund

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08JUL2022; 08:00
Terrorist attack kills Tsar; El Presidente and President Harper Poole severely injured

An explosion at Hotel Metropole in Kremlyov has taken the life of the Tarusan Tsar. As it looks like now, the Tsar and President Harper-Poole from Natal were invited by El Presidente in the latter's suite. That is also the place where the explosion taking the Tsar's life took place. El Presidente and President Harper-Poole are still alive, but both are critically injured. The regent, who stayed in the same hotel after the wedding of Queen Elisabeth and the Tsar's son Konstantin, is unharmed.
Chancellor Lauritzen gave a press conference before the government meeting to phrase his condolences to the Imperial Family of Tarusa, as well as the Tsar's friends and the people of Tarusa. He also sharply condemned the terrorist attack. He offered all the help needed to bring the culprits to justice.


08JUL2022; 11:00
President Harper Poole dead; El Presidente flown to San José

As it is reported from Kremlyov, also President Harper Poole from Natal has passed away after last night's explosion in El Presidente's suite. The government has not reacted on this news yet, but the Regent has. Before entering the government plane to bring him back to Fehrbellin, he phrased his condolences to President Harper Poole's family and friends and the people of Natal, as well as to the Imperial Family and the people of Tarusa and the Tsar's friends.
Meanwhile, the rumour mill has started turn about the explosion. It cannot be different than that this was a terrorist attack. But by whom, and why? Given the fact that the bomb exploded in El Presidente's suite, he was very likely the target. But why, and who wanted to kill him? Various people on Twatter are accusing the Tarusan secret service, but that would be an extremely bold move.


08JUL2022; 16:00
Chancellor Lauritzen offers condolences to President Harper Poole's family and friends

During his weekly press conference after the Government Meeting, Chancellor Lauritzen offered his condolences to President Harper Poole's family and friends, as well as to the people of Natal. He also called upon the people not to "prematurely" speculate about the reasons and the culprits behind the explosion: "At this moment, nothing is known about the background behind this attack yet. The police and secret services of San José, Natal and Tarusa have started their investigations, and we will assist when needed. However, at this moment, we don't know who the culprits are."
 

Rheinbund

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12JUL2022
Kurfürstenkollegium agrees on new King: Philipp von Homburg-Gosta


After having failed to choose a new King last week, the Kurfürstenkollegium agreed on a compromise candidate: Philipp von Homburg-Gosta. He is the younger brother of the Fürst of Casparringen (Caspar von Homburg-Gosta). His Majesty King Philipp was born on 12 March 1970. He obtained his Abitur in 1989, and then served in the Rheinian Navy until 1991. After having fulfilled the civil part of his society service, he started his study history at the Ruppert Koch Universität Weissenfels in 1992. In 2002, he obtained his Ph.D at the Katholische Universität Cöllen. After a few post-docs, he obtained a position as university lecturer at the Universität Engelsheim, where he still works.
King Philipp is married with Elisabeth von Weidenbrück (born 18 February 1975), and has two daughters: Franziska (born 2006) and Helene (born 2009).
 

Rheinbund

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22JUL2022
Reformatorial Synods reject Tiburan reforms; Heilbach in doubt

After Pope John-Joseph announced his reforms last Sunday, the Churches in the Rheinbund remained silent. This also applied to Archbishop Strelecki, the Archbishop of Heilbach and Metropolitan of the Church Province Heilbach (consisting of Heilbach, Thorsringen, Sigmaringen and Ruppertswald), who is also governing head of state of the Prince-Bishopric Heilbach. Today both the Tiburan Catholic Churches and the Protestant Synodes reacted.
The synods of the Envangelic-Lutheran Church and the Reformed Church called the latest reforms regarding homosexuality and couples living together without being married before the Church "a very positive development" and "a movement away from excluding people from the community just because of the persons they love". They also commended the Tiburan-Catholic Church for opening more functions within the Church to lay Catholics: "It is very important to involve the faithful in serving the Church, because then they will be more involved in serving God."
The synods of the Reformatorial Church, the Liberated-Reformatorial Church, the Christian-Reformatorial Church, the Reformatorial Community and the Reformatorial Community Under The Cross also commended the Tiburan-Catholic Church for opening more functions within the Church to lay Catholics, but rejected the Pope's decision to allow gays and people living together without being married to receive Communion again. They mainly criticised the Pope calling homosexuality and living together without being married a "very minor sin". Siegfried Rickenbacker, Chairman of the Synod of the Reformated Church, said about this: "It is disturbing that Pope John-Joseph calls homosexuality a 'very minor sin'. There are no very minor sins. The Bible does not make a distinction between minor and major sins; there are only sins. It is a task of the Church to lead the flock away from sin. Pope John-Joseph currently orders the Tiburan-Catholic Church to let homosexuals and people living together without being married persist in their sins. That is not what Christians should do; they should help sinners to stop sinning. This means that they should support everyone to lead a life that God approves. Also homosexuals, also people living together without being married."
Gertwin Dedekind, Chairman of the Synod of the Reformatorial Community Under The Cross, went a bit further in his criticism: "What Pope John-Joseph says about 'very minor sins' is a whispering from the Devil. Apart from the Sin against the Holy Spirit, there are no major or minor sins. There are only sins. And the Church has to lead the flock away from sin, not support sin by allowing sinners in the community."
Prince-Bishop Rudolf Strelecki reacted on behalf of the Prince-Bishopric and on behalf of the Tiburan Catholic Bishops: "The Tiburan Catholic Church in the Rheinbund will abide by Pope John-Joseph's rule. What he said last Sunday, he said it ex cathedra, so it is Church Law. We will carry it out. For the Prince-Bishopric of Heilbach, Oberpräfekt Eduard Bronstein and I have discussed the matter. We have asked the Heilbacher Police to stop enforcing the ban on homosexual intercourse in preparation of lifting this ban." On the question whether Heilbach would open up marriage to gay couples, Strelecki replied: "Contray to most other memberstates of the Rheinbund, Heilbach only knows marriage before the Church. The Church informs the government on marriages. The Church laws on marriage have not been changed, so Heilbach has to stick to marriage being a matter between man and woman. If we want toThe Pope indicates that we should include homosexuals and people living together without being married in the Church, and give them communion if they want to. I agree with this. But the government of Heilbach is in doubt about gay marriage. We would have to introduce civil marriage in Heilbach then. This has legal problems. And also ethical problems: If we introduce civil marriage and open it up for gay couples, aren't we facilitating a sin then? If yes, are we allowed to do so?"


22JUL2022
Chancellor Lauritzen: Pelasgia's status reduction of Tiburan Catholic Church internal Pelasgian matter

During his weekly press conference, Chancellor Lauritzen reacted on the news from Pelasgia that the Tiburan Catholic Church had lost its status as an officially recognised minority religion. Upon the question whether this move by the Pelasgian government was a violence of freedom of religion, Lauritzen answered: "It is not up to me to tell the Pelasgian government how to govern its country. The withdrawal of the recognition of the Tiburan Catholic Church as minority faith is an internal matter of Pelasgia."
 

Rheinbund

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King Philipp VII will be crowned in Sankt Hadewich Cathedral in Fehrbellin on Thursday 25 August

It is tradition that the Rheinian King is crowned in Fehrbellin, but it is not a law. When the new King is from a religion that does not have a church in Fehrbellin, the coronation has to take place somewhere else. This situation has not happened yet, but the laws foresee in it. Something that cannot be deviated from, is the fact that the coronation has to be performed by a representant of the religion the new King belongs to. This can be a Bishop, but also the Praeses of a synod, a Chief Rabbi or an Imam who is high in the hierarchy in Islam. King Philipp will be crowned by the Archbishop of Fehrbellin: DIeter Purzmann.
 
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