February 22, 2008

Feudalism Ends in Europe Today

The last feudal sovereign power in Europe has decided to become a democracy. Some folks believe in taking their time about making decisions. Wouldn't want to rush into anything!

Sark agrees switch to democracy

Politicians in the Channel Island of Sark have agreed to end the island's feudal system of government which has been in place for the past 450 years.

Flag of SarkGoverning body, the Chief Pleas, has approved new reform laws which will lead to the introduction of a 28-member elected chamber.

Elections under the new constitution will be held in December.

Sark, 80 miles off the south coast, had been governed by a mix of landowners and elected people's deputies...

There was pressure on Sark to reform its feudal constitution to comply with the European Human Rights laws and other international obligations.

Owners of the island's 40 tenements (divisions of land) currently have an automatic seat in the Chief Pleas, and islanders chose 12 people's deputies...

Sark, which is only 3 miles (4.8km) long and 1.5 miles (2.4k) wide, has a resident population of about 600.

Its government can directly trace its roots back to Queen Elizabeth I, who once granted the ruling "Seigner" a fief on the tiny Channel Island.

The unelected descendents of 40 families brought in to colonise Sark, after the French abandoned it in 1553, have governed life on the island ever since...
The decision was undertaken at a meeting of the Most High Lords of Sark with the local peasantry, captured on video below. It's believed to be the first time anyone has ever actually gotten a glimpse inside the intricate political machinations of Sark.

Luckily for those Sarkan "Feudies," the US didn't choose to invade in an effort to "spread democracy."

Other new developments for the tiny Crown Dependency: they're going to get rid of the catapults next week. All witch-burning is scheduled to end Tuesday. Leeches will no longer be mandatory at the island's only medical clinic. The local Discovery Institute office will be shut down. Finally, the island-state will be changing its name from Sark to Snark in an effort to generate tourism income from wise-ass bloggers who write comments about the end of Feudalism in Europe. Said one such blogger, "Yeah, I've been kind of busy with graduate school and all, but when I saw this news item about the end of European Feudalism I knew I'd have to write some meaningless but slightly humorous piece about it. I'll never get a chance like this again!"

It's a great day to be a Sarkan. Sarkian. Sarker. Sarkistani.

Sphere: Related Content