Friday, January 30, 2009

The Honourable Bishop C. M. Sheperd Newest MP

-- Office of the Governor-General

The Governor General issued a Writ of Appointment to the Honourable Bishop C. M. Shepherd to the House of Commons, At Large Division today.

In a very brief statement the Governor-General stated:

I have this day appointed CM Shepherd of the Barony de la Bay as Member of Parliament (at large division).

The Hon. Bishop Shepherd brings many talents and much wisdom to our Parliament. We look forward to working with him on many of the pressing matters that we now face.

Bo Register, Marquess of Mobile, Baron Von Servers of Fayette,
Her Majesty's Governor-General in and for the Dominion of British West Florida

Vacancies in the Members of Parliament At Large Division can be filled by the Governor-General until the next general writ of election is issued.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Russian Orthodox Church Elects New Patriarch

Russian Orthodox Church elects first new patriarch of post-Soviet era
-- From Wikinews - Wednesday, January 28, 2009

In its first such election since 1990, Russian Orthodox Church leaders have overwhelmingly chosen Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad as its 16th Patriarch.

The 62-year-old Kirill, born Vladimir Mikhailovich Gundyayev, will succeed the recently deceased Alexy II as Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia. Alexy II, who is often credited with reviving the Church after the fall of Communism in Russia, was elected Patriarch a year before the Soviet Union dissolved, making this Russia's first patriarchal election of the post-Soviet era.

A secret ballot of the Church Council was held at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow, where 711 bishops, priests, and other clergy from 64 countries convened to elect the new leader of the world's second largest church. Kirill received 508 of the votes, while his more conservative opponent, Metropolitan Kliment of Kaluga and Borovsk, received 169 votes.

Kirill had served as locum tenens, or interim patriarch, following Alexy's death on December 5. Until being enthroned next Sunday, he will retain the title Metropolitan — the second most senior position in Church hierarchy.

The Patriarch-elect is seen by some analysts as a "modernizer" who might be able to improve perpetually strained relations with the Roman Catholic Church. While Alexy II had repeatedly denied the late Pope John Paul II's requests to visit Russia, Kirill had already met with his Catholic counterpart, Pope Benedict XVI, in December 2007.

Shortly before the election, Kirill had expressed a need to work with other Christian denominations in order to oppose "the marginalization of religion" and to "defend the underlying meaning of morality". However, this call for unity was tempered with a call to resist Catholic missionary activity on Russian territory, and to "quickly and decisively react to threats" where necessary.

"A meeting between the Patriarch and the Pope will become possible only when there are conclusive signs of real and positive progress on issues which for a long time have been problematic for our relations," Kirill said Monday in a newspaper interview. These issues include accusations of missionary activity and disputes over church property and influence in Ukraine.

While some analysts see Kirill as a politically-minded figure who may try to seek more independence for the Church under the Russian government, others say this is unlikely. "As it is, the Moscow Patriarchate never criticises the Kremlin over its internal or external policies, said Canon Michael Bordeaux, head of the Keston Institute. "In the Orthodox tradition, which goes back 500 years, the state and the Church work together."

The Russian constitution officially declares a separation of church and state, but ties between the Orthodox Church and the government have strengthened since Vladimir Putin's election as President in 2000. Alexey was a strong supporter of Putin's government, but Kirill's stance is less known.

A short list of three candidates for the election had been chosen by the Archbishops' Council on Sunday. Metropolitan Filaret of Minsk, the first Patriarchal Exarch of Belarus, had withdrawn his name from consideration and endorsed Kirill before Tuesday's final vote.

Belgium's Queen Fabiola Seriously Ill

Belgium's Queen Fabiola seriously ill
From Wikinews, Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Queen Fabiola of Belgium, widow of King Baudouin, is reported to be seriously ill in St John's hospital, Brussels, suffering from pneumonia. The Queen was admitted to hospital on January 16, having been treated earlier in January for a thyroid problem.

Last week, Flemish state television VRT had to apologise after their website mistakenly published a pre-written obituary of the late King's consort. Obituaries for important people are commonly pre-written by newspapers and news sites, with newspapers often writing them years in advance.

The Belgian press have hotly debated the apparent fact that her earlier thyroid operation was conducted under hypnosis.

Queen Fabiola, now 80 years old, was born in Spain and met Baudouin in the 1950s when she was a nurse. They married in 1960 and remained together until his death in 1993. They had no children and Baudouin was succeeded by his brother Albert.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Grand Prince Christopher I of Vikesland & G-G Hold Skype Summit

January 20th, 2009 saw the very first video summit between HSH The Grand Prince Christopher I of Vikeland and His Excellency the Governor-General of British West Florida.

The summit was approximately an hour long and many subjects were discussed such as the League of Small Nations and some National projects.

HSH was quoted on the Micronational Open Forum as saying "Of course we complained of the weather and about some Macro issues."

Many more of these summits will take place in the future and the two leaders look forward to meeting face to face during the LSN international summit in 2010.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

GG Congratulates New US President

The whole world watched the inauguration of President Obama, witnessing a new chapter in both American history and the world's history. We wish the incoming President success in his office. On behalf of the government and the people of the Dominion of British West Florida, I extend our message of best wishes on this auspicious occasion.

The Dominion of British West Florida stands ready to work with the new American President in the great challenges that lie ahead.

Monday, January 19, 2009


His Royal Highness the Duke of Gloucester has been in Australia for over a day, yet it appears that his visit has not been covered in any media organ. Certainly nothing appears in the major news engines, yet His Royal Highness's visit includes meetings on such vital issues as Disaster
Management Response and Co-ordination and Cancer Research.

However, doubtless there will be some news reports on the Duke attending a Dinner at the Melbourne Cricket Ground tonight, not because they are intentionally breaking what is obviously an unwritten rule not to report on anything positive about the Royal Family, but because the host is the
Melbourne Cricket Club and, most probably, the majority of attendees will be republican!

The programme of His Royal Highness is as follows:

Monday, 19th January 2009

The Duke of Gloucester attended a meeting on 'Disaster Management Response and Co-ordination' at the Royal Society of Victoria, 9 Victoria Street, Melbourne.

Tuesday, 20th January 2009

The Duke of Gloucester will visit the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Jolimont, Melbourne.

The Duke of Gloucester Co-President, Cancer Research UK, will visit the Cancer Research Centre, Melbourne Hospital, Melbourne.

The Duke of Gloucester will attend a Dinner hosted by the Melbourne Cricket Club at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne.

Wednesday, 21st January 2009

The Duke of Gloucester will attend a Breakfast Meeting with The Royal Society of Victoria's Young Science Ambassadors at the Melbourne Aquarium, Melbourne.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Text of G-G's Statement on Chinese Censorship

We have been made aware that the Communist Government of Mainland China has again acted against the liberty of its people by blocking access to the Chinese version of WikiNews.

The free content news portal contains news stories related to the situation in Tibet, the Republic of China, and other news those in power in Mainland China wish to suppress.

We call upon the leadership in Mainland China to restore access to WikiNews. These attempts to control the media are not in the international interests of the “Peoples Republic”, and can bring nothing but reproach upon the leadership in the government of mainland China.

We call upon those in authority to work towards addressing the issues presented in the news by acting in ways that do not oppress the people under their government's authority, rather than continuing to pretend that by blocking the news sources that they can 'make the trouble go away'.

The Government of the Dominion of British West Florida remains committed to a free and sovereign Kingdom of Tibet, and mutual recognition among the PRC and the RoC.

Bo Register, Marquess of Mobile,
Baron Von Servers of Fayette,
Lord of St. George, GSB

Her Majesty's Governor-General in and for
the Dominion of British West Florida

Chinese Version of Wikinews Gets Blocked in Mainland China

-- From Wikinews Saturday, January 10, 2009

Wikinews has learned that access to the Chinese Wikinews website has been blocked in China. Wikinews can also confirm that the English version of the website is still available in China.

Users using the social networking site called Twitter have reported that the site was "blockade[ed] today by the mainland" of China. Others, writing on the Wikimedia Foundation's mailing list also state that the Chinese version of Wikinews is blocked in major Chinese cities such as Beijing.

The reason for the blockade is not yet known. Wikinews contacted the Chinese government for a statement, but so far there has been no reply.

The Chinese government has already blocked the popular online encyclopedia Wikipedia, but later in July of 2008 the government began to allow users to access the the site during the Summer Olympics. Wikipedia was then blocked once again after the games had ended.

Wikipedia had previously been blocked for over a year in 2005, but in November of 2006, the site was unblocked. The Chinese government then re-blocked only a month later. The block was an attempt to contain information relating to sensitive topics in China, such as Tibet and Taiwan. The Chinese government has an active policy of blocking websites they consider harmful.

His Excellency the Governor-General has called upon the Government of Mainland China to restore to the People of China access to the free content news portal.

Canadian Trio Claim South Pole Record for Trans-Antarctic Trip

-- From Wikinews Saturday, January 10, 2009

A trio of Canadian trekkers said Friday they completed the fastest unaided on-foot trek using the traditional route from Hercules Inlet on the Ronne Ice Shelf to the South Pole in a record time of 33 days, 23 hours and 30 minutes. Ottawa ultra-runner Ray Zahab, age 39, adventure journalist and architect Kevin Vallely, age 44, of Lynn Valley, North Vancouver and North Pole expeditionist Richard Weber, age 49, said they completed the 700-mile journey, at 10,000 feet altitude, finally arriving early Wednesday morning.

They endured a white-out but survived on a 7,000-calorie-a-day diet of pemmican, Gatorade drink powder, outdated salami, deep-fried bacon, cheese and butter. "If you took a cloud, wrapped it around your head and then duct-taped it, that's what a white-out is like," Mr Zahab, explained. The trio also suffered altitude sickness, vertigo, massive, painful blisters, and temperatures as low as minus 40. Zahab had to pull 170-lb sleds of equipment, traveling on foot and on snowshoes while the other two men skied.

According to's founder, Tom Sjogren, the trio erased the previous record of 39 days, 7 hours and 49 minutes, which was set by American Todd Carmichael, the first American to cross Antarctica to the South Pole alone, on foot and with no assistance. He arrived at The Pole on December 21, 2008. "They have definitely broken the record," said Sjogren. Guinness World Records spokesman, Damian Field, in London, however, said that "Guinness monitors a category for fastest unsupported trek to the South Pole, but it has no record currently listed."

Prior to Carmichael, the record was held by Briton Hannah McKeand. In the fastest journey to the South Pole (600 nautical mile journey), she completed solo and in just 39 days, 9 hours and 33 minutes. In March 2008 she attempted to reach the North Pole alone and unsupported but had to abandon the trip after falling through the ice and badly damaging her shoulder.

Ray Zahab is a Canadian ultramarathon runner, personal trainer, and motivational speaker. He lives in Chelsea, Quebec, and is famous for his 4,300-mile epic run across the Sahara Desert in 2007, which was the subject of a documentary narrated by actor Matt Damon's "Running the Sahara." He heads Impossible2Possible, a nonprofit organization which advocates planet protection. "I started looking at impossible places on the planet in the past year, and I said Antarctica is one of those impossible places, and if we can create an expedition, perhaps we can inspire a bunch of young people to realize they can achieve,' Zahab said.

Richard Weber, M.S.M. (born June 9, 1959 in Edmonton, Alberta) is a world-renowned Canadian Arctic and polar adventurer, from Alcove (near Wakefield). From 1978 to 2006, he participated in, lead and organized more than 45 Arctic expeditions. Richard is the only person to have completed six full North Pole expeditions. He has therefore trekked to the North Pole more than anyone in history.

The trio were waiting out a storm before boarding a flight to Chile for Ottawa. "I'm pretty tired, actually," said Kevin Vallely, calling from Patriot Hills, Antarctica. During the saga, Vallely was solely burdened with carrying the high-tech gear in his sled consisting of video cameras, satellite phones, hand-held computers, different kinds of solar panels, batteries and wires chargers. "Had we not brought all that stuff we probably would have got it done faster because we wouldn't have had to carry all that weight, but then it doesn't matter as much," he explained. Vallely said he also intends to produce a documentary of the expedition.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Ice, snow, and cold strike throughout Europe

-- From Wikinews Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Freezing temperatures, combined with snow over the past few days, have caused travel problems throughout Europe and been responsible for the death of 10 people. On Monday, a strong winter storm moved across Europe, covering parts of Europe with several inches of snow in France and the United Kingdom.

The storm ranged as far as Germany, Belgium, and parts of Northern Italy. This was combined with freezing, Arctic-like temperatures ranging from 23° Fahrenheit to 14°F in the United Kingdom and France, while in some parts of central Romania the temperature plunged to -24°F and Germany felt temperatures of 15°F. Forecasters predict that the freezing temperatures may be the start of a cold spell that could affect the entire continent throughout the month.

Monday's heavy snowstorm forced Roissy-Charles de Gaulle Airport, slightly north of Paris, to cancel most of its flights. 1,658 passengers from Air France alone were stranded at the airport after their flights were grounded due to the heavy snow and icy conditions. The passengers from the 120 canceled Air France flights spent the night in hotels near the airport, and were accommodated for by the airline.

An official from Air France stated that the passengers "will have available food and hot drinks". Most flights were grounded until the next morning. Tuesday, an official from Roissy-Charles de Gaulle said "It did not snow last night. The runways are clear and have been de-iced. Traffic is returning to normal."

The frigid temperatures resulted in several school closings across France and the United Kingdom, with government forecasters from both countries predicted that the cold would stay for several days. Most schools in the United Kingdom were closed to problems with their heating systems, as heating repair services in Britain received a record number of calls for repair of broken heating systems this week.

In Paris, accumulating snow and slippery ice resulted in French officials closing pedestrian access to the Eiffel Tower, one of the city's prime tourist locations.

"We can't put down salt because it's metallic, we can't use sand either because it risks getting into the elevator," stated a press official from the Eiffel Tower. The tower remained closed on Monday and re-opened on Tuesday.

The storm has caused the deaths of at least 13 people, whether directly or indirectly. Polish government officials have reported that 10 people have frozen to death following overnight temperatures of -15°F that were recorded throughout the country. Police in Germany reported that a 77-year-old mentally-ill woman also froze to death after she was reported missing from a nursing home in Weimar. Romanian officials also reported that frigid temperatures killed two people and sent several to the hospital.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Imperial College London Geology Students Fined in China for "Illegal Map-Making"

-- From Wikinews

Monday, January 5, 2009

Three British geology students of Imperial College London have been fined in China for "illegal survey and map-making activities", according to local media. In addition to making maps, the students were researching fault lines and earthquake activity in Xinjiang, which is a tense Muslim province to the west of the country, where anger against Chinese rule sparked deadly attacks in 2008.

The students were gathering additional data in several regions, including Kashgar, the ancient Silk Road trading post, and an oasis city in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China.

Under Dr. Jian Guo Liu, the student's supervisor at Imperial College, they also had been in the poor desert village of Keping, where in May local authorities burned the local mosque due to "unlawful religious activities". Of the three students, two of them, a PhD student aged 23, and a Master of Science student aged 22, went to Aksu Prefecture for their research.

In September, State Security Bureau officials had investigated the students at a hotel for several hours. Thereafter, their equipment, including GPS devices, survey results, and data, were seized. The Aksu Land and Resources Bureau officers claimed they had gathered "illegal data" from 6,000 points which was valuable for mineral prospecting and topographical research.

In the leadup to last year's summer Olympics in Beijing, China cracked down on map-making and data-collecting across the country. Despite having permission from the Earthquake Administration in the country, the students were fined a combined 20,000 yuan (2,940 dollars) but did not receive additional punishments. "The data they gathered would have been valuable in analysing mineral and topographic features of the areas," Xinjiang Daily said. They returned to the UK on October 2.

According to The Procuratorial Daily, the Xinjiang prosecutors' office approved 1,295 arrests of individuals and indicted 1,154 suspects from January to November 2008. The indictments were based on suspicion of "endangering state security." In 2007, however, only 742 were arrested, while 619 of them were indicted for the same offense.

Belgian King Swears in PM Van Rompuy, Cabinet

-- From Wikinews

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The Belgian parliament on Friday approved the new Van Rompuy I Government consisting of the same five political parties that formed the last ruling coalition, temporarily ending the country's political crisis. Lower house deputies approved the Motion of Confidence by a majority of 88 votes to 45, with no abstentions. "Don't judge the government... by its intentions but by its results, but no results in the very short-term, judge us in 2011," Van Rompuy told the lawmakers.

Herman A. Van Rompuy (herman van rɔmpœy) had officially been invested on Tuesday as Belgium's third premier in a year by King Albert II. He addressed parliament Wednesday seeking quick economic measures. In his declaration, he urged the passage of bills to rejuvenate an ailing economy heading into deep recession and sought to resolve the 18 months political crisis after the country spent over nine months in caretaker rule. He also asked for full restoration of confidence amid the near-collapse of the country’s two largest banks.

"The previous government proposed such a plan (pumping 2 billion euros or $2.84 billion, into the economy next year, part of a 200 billion euro EU-wide stimulus package). It must be enacted as soon as possible," Van Rompuy said. "It is clear that in the coming weeks and months the government will take new initiatives to cope with the challenges that the crisis poses for the economy and employment," he added.

In his lower house of parliament speech, Van Rompuy also called for experts to testify in an unbiased parliamentary inquiry on Yves Leterme’s cabinet's alleged attempt to influence the judges into allowing the breakup of Fortis, once Belgium's largest bank. “The investigation should be carried out serenely and without bias,” he said.

Van Rompuy, age 61, is a conservative Belgian Flemish politician and member of the CD&V (formerly called CVP) who succeeds Yves Leterme. On December 28, 2008, he was asked by King Albert II to form a new Government after he was reluctant to take up the role of Prime Minister after the Leterme I government had fallen on 22 December 2008 due to the bank bailout scandal.

The Van Rompuy I Government became the new federal government of Belgium on December 30. It comprises 15 ministers and seven secretaries of state. Eighteen of the 22 ministers served in the same posts in Prime Minister Yves Leterme's government. Vietnam Prime Minister Nguyễn Tấn Dũng on Friday has sent congratulatory messages to the new Premier.

Prime Minister Yves Leterme has offered the resignation of his government on December 18 to King Albert after a crisis erupted surrounding the sale of troubled Fortis bank to BNP Paribas. Leterme, Justice Minister Jo Vandeurzen, and Didier Reynders were accused of violating the separation of powers by trying to influence the Court of Appeals and of exerting improper influence by the First Chairman of the Court of Cassation. Three days later the resignation was accepted by the king.

Meanwhile, the Flemish opposition led by Flemish nationalist NVA party, Jan Jambon, challenged the legitimacy of Van Rompuy's government, calling it "a government which does not represent a majority of the Flemish people". Other opposition parties also questioned the created "Fortisgate" parliamentary commission of enquiry alleging it was a scheme to acquit Leterme.

The Kingdom of Belgium is in northwest Europe. It is a founding member of the European Union and hosts its headquarters, as well as those of other major international organizations, including NATO. Belgium covers an area of 11,787 square miles and has a population of about 10.5 million. Belgium shares borders with France, Germany, Luxembourg , and the Netherlands.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

South Africa Defeats Australia in Second Cricket Test

-- From Wikinews Sunday, January 4, 2009

South Africa convincingly beat Australia by 9 wickets in the second cricket test being played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. It was the first time Australia has been beaten on home soil since 1992 when the West Indies beat Australia by 2-1 in the five match series. It was a see-sawing game that had both teams appear to be on top at times and only hours later struggling. The turning point came late on day three when Jean-Paul Duminy solidified the South African innings going on to eventually make a personal high score of 166. His partnership of 180 with Dale Steyn, who was dropped three times, became a frustration to Australia.

Australia commenced proceedings and was eventually dismissed for 394 in its first innings. The innings finally ended in the first session of day two when Peter Siddle was caught in second slip by de Villiers of a thick edge from a Kallis seamer. It was a sound score after Australia again started slowly losing Mathew Hayden for 8 when the score was 21 continuing a run of bad scores for Hayden this year.

Captain Ricky Ponting again was the mainstay of the innings with a hard fought century, finally falling to a catch by Amla of Paul Harris. This was Pontings 38th century and now only three behind Sachin Tendulkar world record. Middle order batsman Michael Clarke struggled early with slow scoring and remained not out on 88 of a 208 balls including only four boundaries and a solitary six for Clarke.

South African speedster Dale Steyn again proved his ranking as worlds second best bowler taking five wickets including Simon Katich and Michael Hussey. In the second day morning session he removed Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson in the same over before taking his final wicket of Nathan Hauritz.Steyne finished with 5 for 87 and was well supported by Ntini (2/108) with Kallis, Harris and Morkel each taking one.

South Africa's run chase hit trouble with the loss of early wickets in its first innings. The trouble started when Neil McKenzie was bowled by Peter Siddle for a duck in the second over of the day. Amla showed some early promise before playing a loose shot to be caught by Andrew Symonds of the bowling of Mitchell Johnson in the eighth over. South African veteran Jaques Kallis provided support for Smith to carry the score to 109 before being caught behind of Hauritz.

Returning from the lunch break Australia took control with three quick wickets in nine overs. First to go was Smith caught behind of Siddle who was gaining in confidence. Only Smith managed to assert control scoring 62 from 113 balls, he has been the mainstay of the South African batting line-up this tour scoring strongly in each innings. Soon after de villiers and Boucher's wickets fell leaving South Africa 6-141 still trailing Australia by more than 250 runs and attempting to avoid the follow-on.

In the final session middle order players Morne Morkel and Jean-Paul Duminy steadying the innings with partnership of 43 before Morkel was bowled by Johnson in his first ball of a new spell. Paul Harris joined Duminy and remained unbeaten on 8 at the close of play. South Africa finished the second day of play at 7/198 with Duminy the last of the recognized batters unbeaten on 34. Australia clearly held the advantage with a lead of almost 200 and only three wickets remaining.

Day three would change the shape of the game with strong, determined batting from South Africa combined with lackluster bowling from Australia. Harris was out early on day three which brought pace bowler Dale Steyn to the wicket. His 76 of 191 balls was another personal best and despite being dropped three times looked every part the batsman.Duminy had total control of the bowlers and with Lee sitting on the sideline with suspected stress fractures of his heel, the bowling attack was limited and struggling. His innings of over seven hours included 340 balls, 18 boundaries , took the score from 6-141 to all out for 459, a lead of 65 runs. The falls of Duminys wicket late on day three meant Australia was required to face a tough three overs to close the day.

Australia began the fourth day with the goal of wiping out the deficit from their first innings and then set a target for South Africa to chase. Those plans quickly changed when Australia's opening combination of Hayden and Katich again failed with Hayden being caught by man of the moment Duminy on 23 from the bowling of Steyn. Katich fell two overs later and when Hussey was dismissed for only two in the 15th over Australia was in trouble and defending grimly at 3-49. First innings century maker, Ricky Ponting, and Michael Clarke steadied Australia and took the score to 145 when Clarke became Steyn's third wicket for the innings. Symonds, Haddin and Lee fell in quick succession with Australia reeling at 7-180 and only Ponting providing resistance. Ponting eventually fell for 99 having struggled through the nineties and then seemingly "choked" on an easy ball that should have brought up his century. Mitchell Johnson atoned for his first innings duck and supported Ponting well and continued his aggressive approach to finish on 43. Hauritz and Siddle offered little resistance and Australia was all out for 247 a lead of only 182 and more than a days play remaining.

Graeme Smith commenced the run chase with his usual aggression making striking boundaries at will and finishing the days play at 25 after only six overs. Smith continued the same approach the following morning taking a total of ten boundaries in his score of 75 from only 95 balls. He had taken South Africa to a winning position and needing only 61 runs to win a historic test series. Neil McKenzie and Hashim Amla confidently closed the game finishing on 1-183 from only 48 overs.

For Australia the pain was magnified with key players Symonds and Lee unlikely to take further part in the series due to injury and should Australia lose the last test in Sydney they would not only lose the world number one spot, they would fall to number three behind India with the Protea's taking top place. The final game will be played in Sydney on the 3rd January.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Chairman of Lord's Select Committee on Heraldry and Arms Resigns

-- Public Message from the Governor-General

My Lords and Ladies, Fellow Subjects of Her Majesty the Queen, and notable visitors;

I have received from our King of Arms, the Lord Jon Lawrence, Baron Baldwin a letter of resignation from the office of King of Arms and Chairman of the Lords Select Committee on Heraldry and Arms.

Though we shall regret the loss of so able a man's services, in view of the reasons given I find the only proper, wise, and charitable action is accept his resignation, release him from all duties as King of Arms, excuse him from the Chairmanship, and grant him leave to attend to his duties elsewhere while remaining Her Majesty's right trusty and beloved Baron of Baldwin.

I ask that you join me in prayers for Grand Duke Phillip I's swift and full recovery, as well as for the Baron Baldwin, and his new Government of Westarctica.

I have attached a portion of the Baron Baldwin's Letter:

Her Majesty's Governor-General, Lords and Ladies of the House of Lords:

I Jon-Lawrence, Baron of Baldwin will no longer be able to serve Her Majesty in the role of Chair of the Heraldry Committee. I regret that I must adopt a much lesser hand in the Dominion. Providence has called me to return to a more active position in the Governance of the Dominion's staunch ally, the Grand Duchy of Westarctica.

As some of you know Phillip I of Westarctica has fallen ill. His health and his family are, as they should be, his primary concerns. I ask that the Dominion find the time to pray for Phillip's swift recovery.

Phillip has chosen to sever ties with the Grand Duchy. With the support of Westarctica's founder, Travis McHenry, members of the the nation's cabinet, and Westarctica's citizens, I have become the third Grand Duke of Westarctica.

To cement the relationship between our nations, I would be honored to continue to serve as Her Majesty as her Baron of the beloved Baldwin.

As ever your servant,

Baron of Baldwin

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Governor-General Publishes Shedule of Holidays

In the Name of Her Majesty the Queen;

I do hereby declare and publish this list of Holidays to observed by the Government of the Dominion of British West Florida. Her Majesty's Subjects are encouraged to observe these dates with festivities and prayers appropriate to the occasion. The State Opening of Parliament will, as usual, take place as part of our Celebration of Her Majesty's Birthday.


Date of Celebration

Additional Information

New Years Day

Thursday, 1 January

Celebration of Thanks for a New

Twelfth Day

Monday, 5 January

Twelfth Day of Christmas: 

December 25th Old Style

Commonwealth Day

Monday, 9 March

Celebrating the unity and diversity that the British Commonwealth of Nations (the former British Empire) embraces under Her Majesty the Queen.

Good Friday

Friday, 10 April

Solemn Recognition of the Day of
Our Lord Jesus's Death for Our Sins

Easter Monday

Monday 13, April

Celebration of the Risen Lord
and Saviour, Jesus Christ

Restoration Day

Friday 29, May

Celebration of the Restoration of HM King Charles II to the Throne and his entry into London

Queen's Birthday

Monday, 8 June

Celebrating the Offical Birthday
of our Sovereign Lady, Elizabeth II


Friday, 28 August

Celebrating the Close of Summer

Discoverer's Day

Tuesday, 20 October

Celebrating the Disoverers (Columbus, Newton, Herschell, and the rest!)

Remembrance Day

Wednesday, 11 November

Day to honour all our fallen Heroes.


Thursday, 19 November

Feast of Celebration for the
Bountiful Land and Harvest.

Thanksgiving Friday

Friday, 20 November

Second Day of the Feast of Plenty

Christmas Day

Friday, 25 December

Celebration of the Birth of Our
Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ

Boxing Day

Saturday, 26 December

A day set aside to care for those in need.

New Year's Eve

Thursday, 31 December

Day to Review one's Life and
Make Resolutions

Bo Register, Marquess of Mobile, Baron Von Servers of Fayette, GSB
Her Majesty's Governor-General in and for the Dominion of British West Florida