May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 02:11 UTC

Critique of the draft Constitution - Chapter 8  

Article 33. Royal Council of Supreme Values

Is this the “Chamber of Council of Supreme Values??” Nowhere else do I find it defined. This article is the closest I can find to the: Chamber of Council of Supreme Values…

§1) So, the Royal Council is the supervisory branch? This should be clearly defined what branch is occupied by what group or person.

§2) The age requirement is absurdly high. Council members should become eligible from age 35 be not exceed the age of 70 to be nominated. There should be defined terms for these positions. We should encourage Citizens to perform their civic duties within a state role. To that end, these roles should not be lifetime appointments! I recommend a single 15 year term.

§3) I would be interested in seeing the laws surrounding this group.

§4) okay

**) There is no mention of how this group has a function in the removal of the HoS. It should be defined here.

**) How many members should comprise this Royal council? 13? 20?

Article 34. Parliament

§2. Why is language the defining factor for representation in parliament? As the nation grows, there is no way 150 members of parliament can represent the vast Space Nation. There should be an algorithm that determines the number of members based on population size. Furthermore, as stated in Article 27§7 “Asgardia strives towards a single Asgardian language in the future,” this section should be written for that future.

§3) Members of Parliament should definitely have term limits. I like five years as it’s easy to count on the human-hand. However, the minimum age should be 30.

§4) Where is the “Central Electoral Commission” defined? How is it formed and power balanced?

§5) Why is there a maximum age limit on Parliament members?

§8) Does the Parliament Chairman serve as the elected leader and continue to hold the publicly elected role or parliament member? It’s not defined if the membership is replaced after the Chairman is elected.

§10) So an “*invitation*” is mandatory to appear? Curious wording for this section.

§11) The HoS should not have the power to dissolve parliament. This is too much power and leaves too much room for a dictator to destroy the democracy of Asgardia.

§14) What are the ministries for which these 13 committees correspond. While website government page ( suggests what these are, it’s not defined in the Constitution! 

Article 35. Government

§3) What are the ministries for which these 13 committees correspond. While website government page ( suggests what these are, it’s not defined in the Constitution! Why 13? The website shows only 12…

§4) Why is the Chairman of the Government effectively decided by the HoS. After all, the Chairman cannot be appointed unless the HoS approves the Royal Court’s proposal. Seems like the parliament doesn’t really have a choice here. This should be balanced such that the Royal Court does not require the approval of HoS. Furthermore, the minimum age to serve as a parliament member should be lowered to 30. No maximum age should be set. Agree that parliament member should not have conflicting interest by running a business while holding office.

§8) Asgardia has exclusive legislative rights in all financial matters.” This doesn’t include private business financial matters, right?? I would hate to learn that everything is owned by the State.

§9) The wording of the section suggests that the Government will continue to spend money even if there is no approved budget. There is no case defined in how the Government responds when there is no budget and no money left over from the previous year… It cannot be expected to always have a budget. Sometime poor planning happens…

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 02:11 UTC

Article 36. Decision-Making and Implementation

§1) “The Head of State’s address is binding for all Asgardian state bodies and officials.” This should be stripped from this section. All binding agreements should be enacted by law as enforced by the parliament and not a verbal address to Asgardia. Verbal decrees like the address have little means of check and balance by the supervisory and Judicial branches.

§2) What are “key social relations?”

§5) Will this “public monitoring” be open for public viewing? There must be transparency of government.

Article 37. Judiciary

§4) Why 13 Justices? Do they all preside on the same cases? Is there a minimum quorum of Justices required to hand out the final verdict?

§5) 40 is a good age for a young Justice. However, I don’t believe there should be an upper age limit for this type of position.

§10) Lifetime appointments should not be the default term! Justices should be limited to a maximum of two terms at 15 years each term. At the end of each term, Parliament must vote to keep or replace the Justice. We must keep the court fresh and encourage Citizens to participate in the Government. Additionally, no Citizen (not the HoS, the Justices, the Royal Court, the Royal Council, the Parliament, etc.) should ever be above the laws and constitution of Asgardia! You cannot have immunity and follow the law. All people should be held accountable. The statement: “enjoy immunity and independence and” must be stripped from this clause.

§**) There should be an established appeals process from lower courts. Only cases heard by the Supreme Justice will be considered final.

Article 38. Prosecutor’s Office

This should be titled: “Prosecutor General” as it focuses on that role.

§3) The Prosecutor General should be limited to five-year terms at a maximum of five terms.

§**) There should be an explanation of the Prosecutor General’s role in removing the HoS.

Article 39. National Audit Office

§3) All positions in this office should be limited to a maximum of three-terms. Five-year terms are acceptable.

§**) Under which branch does this office belong? Supervisory?

Article 40. Law Enforcement

§**) If prisons are prohibited (Article 9§10), what is the consequence of the most offensive crime (e.g. murder)? Do we revoke that person’s citizenship/rights and exile them? Do we rehabilitate them and reintegrate them back into society?

§**) There should be a clause on extradition, but not in the Constitution. I hope the Law does elaborate on this point.

 §**)Which government branch does “Law Enforcement” belong? Judiciary?

  Last edited by:  Richie Bartlett (Asgardian)  on May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 11:32 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 02:12 UTC

Chapter 9. Adoption and Amendment of the Constitution

Article 41. Adoption of the Constitution

§1) How is the count of votes determined? What time period is allowed for votes to be collected? (Should be at least five days!)

Article 42. First Constitution

§**) There was no General Election on Jan 20, 2017 for Head of the Nation. It was established by Decree #1… The general population was given no choice in this matter! It was understood by implication of forthcoming “elections”  that we would elect a new Head of State – maybe Igor would be Elected anyway. But as established in Article 32§3, the first HoS is Dr. Ashurbeyli, we are given no choice… And, since this role is virtually a lifetime commitment, we would rarely see a chance to exercise the democratic process of the People choosing their leader. The first official Head of State must be willing to step down after five years! There must be an election of a new monarch to keep the ideas of Asgardia fresh and concurrent with the will of the People! 

§1) Why the age of 18 when the full legal age in Asgardia is 16 (Chapter 3, Article 6§1)? Why not allow 16 year-olds to participate in the vote?

Article 43. Quorum for Adoption of the Constitution

§1) Should be adopted by 2/3rd majority. The statement “part 2, article 39 of this Constitution.” makes no sense as the reference has nothing to do with this article. This statement is incomplete. 

§**) Furthermore, how are the votes counted??? Is the majority determined by the number of casted votes? Or, by comparing votes to the number of registered Citizens at the time of the vote??

Article 44. Amendment of the Constitution

§1) this should be “written in stone” and not voidable by future amendments. “Asgardia’s Constitution may be amended by means of an referendum. However, this article of amendment is unchangeable and cannot be voided by any law, decree, or any other amendment.”

Article 45. Procedure for Amendment of the Constitution

  Last edited by:  Richie Bartlett (Asgardian)  on May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 06:02 UTC, Total number of edits: 2 times

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 02:12 UTC

Chapter 10. Transitional and Final Provisions

Article 46. Special rights of the Head of State before the election of Parliament and formation of the Government of Asgardia

§1) These decrees must be reviewed and removed, if necessary, by the Royal Council based on laws of Asgardia.

Article 47. Special procedure for election of a new Head of State

§1) .

Article 48. Deadline for election of Parliament

§1) .

Article 49. Deadline for forming the Government of Asgardia

§1) .

Article 50. Effectiveness of the Constitution

§1) AS the vote will take place on June 18, 2017 (Gregorian Calendar), it should be held as effective provided the 2/3rd majority vote of the Constitution is reached. 

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 02:24 UTC

Wow LoreZyra! That is a very detailed review of the draft. Well done! I hope that your comments are considered with the seriousness commensurate with the obvious effort you have made.

One thing I noticed though - It was originally (and unilaterally it seems) that Asgardia's motto would be "One Humanity, One Unity". The draft constitution seems to have changed this to "One Humanity, One Community". Like you, I feel for all those that put time and effort into the motto competition

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 02:41 UTC

@ petrv

"@skieswanne - is possible to reveal who worked on this proposal? (not the real names, just roles)"

Unfortunately, that information was not passed to us. We only know that  @Lena De Winne and the *LEGAL TEAM* are responsible for it.
As @bigred has pointed out (by his own inquiry), Dr. Igor Ashurbeyli wrote the entire draft before passing it to the LEGAL TEAM.

  Last edited by:  Richie Bartlett (Asgardian)  on May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 05:50 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 04:28 UTC

Nice analysis Lore, though I have three comments. First is the issue of inheritance. While I'm still perplexed as to why the idea of a monarch was brought up as it's a pretty big taboo among most of the people today, to the point that even North Korea which seems more and more like an autocratic and despotic monarchy is still classified as a Dictatorship, the allowance of the Head of State to nominate anybody as a successor is essentially allows for them to choose their family as candidates, but doesn't require them. Also putting the vetting process in the constitution would be somewhat against the purpose of a constitution in defining the structure rather than details of governance of a government. As it is, it essentially allows the Head of State, Royal Council, and Parliament to each choose their own candidates for any reason they deem appropriate, though I expect that in practice that it will be quite a rigorous process and that if a Head of State is determined to have their chosen child be the next Head of State they will worked hard to prepare their child for the task so when the election comes around the people will be likely to vote for them. 

Second, in regards to maximum age, I think it's a good idea for every office, including Parliament, to have maximum ages. Or at the very least a requirement to be of sound mind. Otherwise you get a situation like the US where there is a large potential of several Supreme Court Justices getting Alzheimers or something similar yet are unable to be removed because there it's unconstitutional to do so and the judges in question because of their mental state refuse to resign. 

Third, while I think the 15 year limit for Justices is a good idea, I'm less likely to think the potential of being allowed to serve a second term depending on whether any branch likes them to be a good idea. At least for the first term, there will be many Justices that will be less concerned with dealing justice and more with settling cases in a way that will get them re-confirmed. 

Other than that you did a much better was job at pointing out the flaws of each clause than I did, though I think I caught a few problems you missed, like the fact that the power to call for elections of Parliament could potentially prevent anyone from being members of Parliament thus preventing Parliament from even forming up in addition to the already powerful power of being able to dissolve it at any time. 

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 04:38 UTC

@skieswanne - You only have to ask them guys.  Below are the answers I received when I asked.

The good doctor wrote it in Russian and it was translated by a commercial company.  There are obvious translation problems in the first part as the English is often nonsensical and meaningless.  However the intent is there, just exceedingly poor grammar and wording due to the translator's obvious desire to make it sound grandiose without having much in the way of an understanding of English grammar and structure.

The second part had the involvement of the legal teams of the good doctors companies. This is obvious from the fact that it is worded in a more legal format and includes a lot of the provisions and wording from various other constitutions, although often not well formed (eloquently pointed out in detail by @scarbs, @trackman1997 and @LoreZyra above). 

The whole thing is being reviewed by a legal consultant in an English speaking country. The "community at large" within this forum is being used in a similar manner to the DoU and Constitution contents forums.  

The DoU has been reviewed based on the previous forum however has not been updated yet.  Hence we have pretty much the original written into this draft.

One area I noticed which hasn't really been touched on by others is the interesting lines about "morality" and not being able to question the supreme values.  There needs to always be discussion concerning law and value systems and it needs to be objective allowing for disagreement.  Any question of subjectivity needs to have a clear and explainable definition so that it cannot be used to subjectively force a personal opinion on others under the threat of punishment.

At the start of the document the wording makes it look like the "royal council of supreme values" could be subverted to a set of secret police that can take you away in the middle of the night because you said something that was subjectively decided to be "amoral", "undermining" or "diminishing" of the supreme values.

I think it is ok to want a certain moral code and to protect a set of values however these need to be defined clearly.  A system cannot be allowed to devolve into punitive measures being taken by certain people because their subjective view of a subject is different to another person's view.  Also any position that has oversight of governance and/or citizens (such as this body) cannot be allowed to be a career position or appointed to that position by the ultimate power in the state (the HoS).  Our history proves that is an absolute recipe for disaster.

At this point there are quite a lot of legal situations which would arise out of what is written here. They may be translation problems and a lot are simple. A good example is chapter3 - article 6 - point 2: "Space citizenship of Asgardia is a special type of citizenship and does not constitute dual or second citizenship for purposes of Earth citizenship....".  We all probably understand this is obviously here to avoid the problems dual citizenship would bring about for a lot of people while Asgardia is seeking peer recognition as a state. However if the state of Asgardia is to achieve peer recognition and be included at an international level by the UN then other countries will definitely recognise it as dual citizenship. This makes this statement a little useless. It also makes being an Asgardian citizen of no actual physical use or purpose.  

As I say, these are just little problems which will cause some legal issues and need to be tidied - whether it is the English translation or just not thought through properly. 

And yes........"tied to the ideal parameters of the Moon set by a special law of Asgardia"....sorry but what in the world is that???? Just in case I was uninformed,  I went searching all over the web, my extensive libraries and all my customer and colleague's archives and I could not find any definition or mention of the "ideal parameters of the Moon"  :-D :-D  Perhaps those parameters will be defined by that special law :-D  :-D   I think this is why it is important to have feedback from the originator of any document to clarify what they really meant when the translator substituted their own poetic abuse of the English language.

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 04:41 UTC

Nice analysis @LoreZyra, hat`s off for the effort. However, article 45 still stands unaltered even though it is the basis of any free nation to let people propose amendments. It should include another way of amending the Constitution, namely by allowing citizens to propose changes (a threshold of 5% - 10% of supporters for a proposal to be brought forth for a referendum). If this possibility is missing, people will never ever be able to safeguard themselves and will be forever ignored. I`ve seen this so many times recently, when politicians only proposed the variants they wanted, totally against the citizens will.

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 04:42 UTC

Also my appreciation for @Trackman1997 and @bigred, very good points

  Updated  on May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 04:49 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 04:43 UTC


  Last edited by:  Dirk Baeyens (Asgardian)  on May 27, 17 / Can 07, 01 03:49 UTC, Total number of edits: 4 times

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 05:46 UTC

@Dirk Baeyens(Asgardian) on 20 May 2017, 4:43 a.m.

The only team i know is the one-man-team Professor Ram Jakhu,
who does not work with nor does he work for Asgardia and
 just gives info how it should all work with the known laws.

Hi Dirk,

How does this contribute to the discussion of the Constitution Draft? Can you add your concerns, if any, about this draft? 

I am certain that I have not covered every fault in the draft. (After all, I spent many hours through the night without sleep to complete it...)

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 06:09 UTC


  Last edited by:  Dirk Baeyens (Asgardian)  on May 27, 17 / Can 07, 01 03:50 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 07:20 UTC


  Last edited by:  Dirk Baeyens (Asgardian)  on May 27, 17 / Can 07, 01 03:50 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time

May 20, 17 / Can 00, 01 07:31 UTC

I have re-read the constitution two times and I want to contribute the following changes (what is explained in the PDF):

Comments are welcome.