Acadia, officially known as the Acadian Democracy (French: Démocratie acadienne), is a nation located in Canada, comprised of Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island. Acadia's capital and largest city is Port Royal. Acadia is a member nation of the Cult of Justitia, and the Red sphere, and is also an observer of the Francophonie.
Acadia has an approximate population of 3.237.375, and has an area of 245.265 km². Acadia is a deliberative democracy headed by Matthew Richard. Acadia is also an officially bilingual nation, with English and French as its official languages.
The origin of the designation Acadia is credited to the explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano, who on his sixteenth century map applied the ancient Greek name "Arcadia" to the entire Atlantic coast north of Virginia (note the inclusion of the 'r' of the original Greek name). "Arcadia" derives from the Arcadia district in Greece which since Classical antiquity had the extended meanings of "refuge" or "idyllic place". The Dictionary of Canadian Biography says: "Arcadia, the name Verrazzano gave to Maryland or Virginia 'on account of the beauty of the trees,' made its first cartographical appearance in the 1548 Gastaldo map and is the only name on that map to survive in Canadian usage. . . . In the 17th century Champlain fixed its present orthography, with the 'r' omitted, and Ganong has shown its gradual progress northwards, in a succession of maps, to its resting place in the Atlantic Provinces."
Geography, climate, and environmentEdit
The land area of Acadia is approximately 97.536.000 acres. Acadia is one of the smallest nations in the world, surpassing only Aztlan, the UWF, the Federation of Bob, England, and New Cadia.
Nova Scotia has a great variety of coastal landforms - most of the land is bedrock. As a result of erosion, beaches and marshes are being formed on the coasts. It has numerous hills and several low mountain ranges (the Appalachian Mountains cover the entire province), lush river valleys, lakes and forests, windswept barrens, and a varied sea coast ranging from rugged to broad sand beaches. The Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia has numerous offshore fishing banks. Rising seal evels have inundated many parts of the coastline, providing rich habitat for marine life, as well as other unique features such as coastal islands, bays, harbours, and the Bras d'Or Lake, an estuary that defines the central portion of Cape Breton Island. It lies in a mid temperate zone, with the average temperatures rarely rising above 82F and rarely going below -4F.
Prince Edward Island is mostly pastoral with red soil, white sand, and scattered communities. The landscape has rolling hills, pristine forests, sand beaches, ocean coves, and the famous red soil that gives the Island a reptuation as one of outstanding natural beauty. The island has typically the same temperatures as Nova Scotia, although severe storms and blizzards rake the island during winter.
New Brunswick differs from the rest of Acadia physiographically, climatologically, and ethnoculturally. While Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland are surrounded or partially surrounded by water, New Brunswick is sheltered from the Atlantic Ocean proper and is removed from oceanic influences. The climate tends to be more continental rather than maritime. There are many major river systems in the area, including the St. Croix River, Saint John River, Kennebecasis River, Petitcodiac River, Miramichi River, Nepisiguit River, and the Restigouche River. Most of New Brunswick is dominated by the Appalachians, although eastern parts of the area are dominated by the Gulf of St. Lawrence lowland forests ecoregion.
Newfoundland is largely an extension of the Applachian system. Major bays, peninsulas, river systems, and mountain ranges are typically oriented southwest to northeast, parallel to the Appalachians. The eastern part of the island is mostly folded sedimentary rocks with some igneous rock - it was part of southwestern Europe or North Africa about 250 million years ago. The oldest rocks are Precambrian. The rest of the island is mostly Paleozoic of varied origin. Along the lest coast lie the Long Range Mountains which are formed by a horst that rises about 600 metres above sea level. Much of the island was part of the eastern margin of continental America. During the Last Glacial Maximum, glaciers scoured the earth and most parts of the island are without good soil. Newfoundland's nickname, "The Rock", is a result.
- Main article: Maritime Provinces#History
The Maritimes was the first area in Canada to be settled by Europeans. There is speculation that Viking explorers discovered and settled in the Vinland region around 1000 AD, which is when the L'Anse aux Meadows settlement in Newfoundland and Labrador has been dated, and it is possible that further exploration was made into the present-day Maritimes and northeastern United States.
Both John Cabot and Giovanni da Verrazzano are reported to have sailed in or near Maritime waters during their voyages of discovery for England and France respectively. Several Portuguese explorers/cartographers have also documented various parts of the Maritimes, namely Diogo Homem. However, it was French explorer Jacques Cartier who made the first detailed reconnaissance of the region for a European power, and in so doing, claimed the region for the King of France. Cartier was followed by nobleman Pierre Dugua, Sieur de Monts who was accompanied by explorer/cartographer Samuel de Champlain in a 1604 expedition where they established the second permanent European settlement in North America, following Spain's settlement at St. Augustine. Champlain's settlement at Saint Croix Island, later moved to Port Royal, survived where the ill-fated English settlement at Roanoke did not, and pre-dated the more successful English settlement at Jamestown by three years.
Champlain's success in the region, which came to be called Acadie, led to the fertile tidal marshes surrounding the southeastern and northeastern reaches of the Bay of Fundy being populated by French immigrants who called themselves Acadien. Acadians eventually built small settlements throughout what is today mainland Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, as well as Île-Saint-Jean (Prince Edward Island), Île-Royale (Cape Breton Island), and other shorelines of the Gulf of St. Lawrence in present-day Newfoundland and Labrador, and Quebec. Acadian settlements had primarily agrarian economies, although there were many early examples of Acadian fishing settlements in southwestern Nova Scotia and in Île-Royale, as well as along the south and west coasts of Newfoundland, the Gaspé Peninsula, and the present-day Côte-Nord region of Quebec. Most Acadian fishing activities were overshadowed by the comparatively enormous seasonal European fishing fleets based out of Newfoundland which took advantage of proximity to the Grand Banks.
The growing English colonies along the American seaboard to the south and various European wars between England and France during the 17th and 18th centuries brought Acadia to the centre of world-scale geopolitical forces. In 1613, Virginian raiders captured Port Royale, and in 1621 Acadia was ceded to Scotland's Sir William Alexander who renamed it Nova Scotia. By 1632, Acadia was returned from Scotland to France under the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, and the Port Royale settlement was moved to the site of nearby present-day Annapolis Royal. More French settlers, primarily from the Vienne, Normandie, and Brittany regions of France, continued to populate the colony of Acadia during the latter part of the 17th and early part of the 18th centuries. Important settlements also began in the Beaubassin region of the present-day Isthmus of Chignecto, and in the St. John River valley, and settlers began to establish communities on Île-Saint-Jean and Île-Royale as well.
In 1654, New England raiders attacked Acadian settlements on the Annapolis Basin, starting a period of uncertainty for Acadians throughout the English constitutional crises under Oliver Cromwell, and only being properly resolved under the Treaty of Breda in 1667 when France's claim to the region was reaffirmed. Colonial administration by France throughout the history of Acadia was contemptuous at best. France's priorities were in settling and strengthening its claim on New France and the exploration and settlement of interior North America and the Mississippi River valley. Over the next several hundred years, many military conflicts would be fought in Nova Scotia and the Acadian area.
In 1820, the Colony of Cape Breton Island was merged back into the Colony of Nova Scotia for the second time by the British government.
British settlement of the Maritimes, as the colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island came to be known, accelerated throughout the late 18th century and into the 19th century with significant immigration to the region as a result of Scottish migrants displaced by the Highland Clearances and Irish escaping the Great Irish Famine (1845-1849). As a result, significant portions of the three provinces are influenced by Celtic heritages, with Scottish Gaelic having been widely spoken, particularly in Cape Breton, although it is less prevalent today.
During the American Civil War, some Maritimers emigrated to the United States to volunteer for the armies of the Union or the Confederacy. However, the majority of the conflict's impact was felt in the shipping industry since diplomatic tensions between Britain and the Unionist North had deteriorated after Britain expressed support for the secessionist Confederate South. The Union navy, although much smaller than the Royal Navy, did posture off Maritime coasts at times. Although an amphibious invasion was never in question, blockading by Union naval forces was common, particularly at Halifax, where Confederate navy ships sought refuge and reprovisioning.
The immense size of the Union army (the largest on the planet toward the end of the Civil War), however, was viewed with increasing concern by Maritimers throughout the early 1860s. Another concern was the rising threat of Fenian raids on border communities in New Brunswick by those seeking to end British rule of Ireland. This combination of events, coupled with an ongoing decline in British military and economic support to the region as the Home Office favoured newer colonial endeavours in Africa and elsewhere, led to a call among Maritime politicians for a conference on Maritime Union, to be held in early September, 1864 in Charlottetown - chosen in part because of Prince Edward Island's reluctance to give up its jurisdictional sovereignty in favour of uniting with New Brunswick and Nova Scotia into a single colony. New Brunswick and Nova Scotia felt that if the union conference were held in Charlottetown, they might be able to convince Island politicians to support the proposal.
The Charlottetown Conference, as it came to be called, was also attended by a slew of visiting delegates from the neighbouring colony of Canada, who had largely arrived at their own invitation with their own agenda. This agenda saw the conference dominated by discussions of creating an even larger union of the entire territory of British North America into a united colony. The Charlottetown Conference ended with an agreement to meet the following month in Quebec City, where more formal discussions ensued, culminating with meetings in London and the signing of the British North America Act. Of the Maritime provinces, only Nova Scotia and New Brunswick were initially party to the BNA Act, Prince Edward Island's reluctance, combined with a booming agricultural and fishing export economy having led to that colony opting not to sign on.
Government and electionsEdit
Acadia is the world's first deliberative democracy. As a deliberative democracy, it has similar ideals to consensus democracy and participatory democracy. There are few elected officials, and among them only five have any power. Power in the Acadian government is defined as "the ability to declare a state of emergency within reasons, and execute policies during such a state that would ordinarily require a Deliberation". These five officials are the President, Prime Minister, Secretary of State, Secretary of Treasury, and Secretary of Defense. During a state of emergency, the President has full power over the other four officials, and the Prime Minister just below him. In general, the Prime Minister would oversee coordination among the non-powerful elected officials, while the President would oversee the powerful officials. The Secretary of State would be able to activate, cancel, or otherwise manage treaties or foreign affairs without the consultance of the people. The Secretary of Treasury would be allowed to make monetary policy changes, seize assets, etc., and the Secretary of Defense would oversee the movements of the entire military of Acadia.
There are two levels of government: federal and parish. The federal government is comprised of the powerful officials and the military. Parish governments are comprised of non-powerful officials and the voters. Unlike in federations where the second level of government is capable of having its own sets of laws that differ from other similarly-leveled governments, there are no divisions. All parish governments simply oversee votes, organise debates, and act as arms of the federal government. Law and order is processed by the parish governments and then handled by the federal government at trial.
The federal government unveiled Acadia's Social Insurance System (SIS), a Federal Government-owned social insurance program that would help the aging citizens of the nation. The implementation of the system caused taxes to increase from 28% to 30%.