The Nationalist Party is dedicated to what it calls "the Lendosan nation". Unlike nationalists in some countries, the modern Lendosan Nationalist Party does not define its "nation" by ethnicity or culture. Instead, it defines "Lendosans" simply as anyone who lives within the borders of the Confederation and who identifies themselves first and foremost as "a Lendosan". The party's leader, Julia Verna, has stated that "a Lendosan is identified by community, interests, and values, not by his or her skin colour, language, or traditions." This non-ethnic approach to nationalism is relatively new within the party, however, and there are elements which oppose the change.
The Nationalist Party holds nine seats in the Senate. The leader of the party is currently Julia Verna, and the deputy leader is Gorado Cavalo. Other figures of note are Delono Esmo, Khim'om Si, and Jamio Lanto. The position of Secretary of the party is currently held by Senedo Senso.
Colour and Emblem
The Nationalists use purple as their official colour. Their emblem is the silhouette of a flag.
The Lendian language name of the party is "lo Partido Nationalisto".
"All Lendosans should be proud to be Lendosan, regardless of trivial matters such as their ethnicity, religion, or cultural background. The government should always reflect this pride, and attempt to strengthen it where it has weakened."
The Nationalist Party believes strongly that the government should strive to create a powerful sense of "Lendosan-ness" throughout the Confederation, encouraging people to support and cherish their state.
- Increase the use of important national symbols, such as flags, emblems, and anthems, so as to increase their visibility.
- Educate children better about the country, its values, and its symbols.
- Encourage participation of citizens in worthwhile causes and groups, thereby increasing unity and community spirit.
- Make it harder for people to desecrate national symbols (the act of burning flags in particular), with strict penalties for those who do.
- Require all newcomers to Lendosa to undertake comprehensive education about Lendosa, its symbols, and its values.
- Increase the recognition given to members of the armed forces, veterans, and anyone else who serves his or her country well.
- Create a complete set of honours, medals, and rewards, and use them to reward those who advance the nation.
The Nationalist Party holds many economic views which would best be described as protectionist. These policies are intended to keep the economy under Lendosan control, leaving as little foreign influence as possible.
- Make it harder for foreigners to purchase or own companies or property within the Lendosan Confederation.
- Impose moderate tariffs where necessary to protect Lendosan industry and employment.
- Strengthen laws which prevent Lendosan companies from destroying jobs here by shifting their operations abroad.
The Nationalist Party believes that Lendosa's current foreign policy is too "soft", and does not serve the national interest. It believes in a more aggressive approach, although believes that Lendosa should not get involved in conflict unless it is of direct concern to the nation.
- Revoke Lendosan neutrality, as this has the potential to be a barrier to our national interests.
- Adopt a more proactive foreign policy designed to actively advance Lendosan goals, rather than a policy which simply reacts to events.
- Increase defence spending, as failure to do so leaves Lendosa vulnerable to whatever surprises might arise in the future.
Issues Facing the Party
The Nationalist Party's most pressing problem is most likely the division between so-called "new" (or "neo-") and "old" types of nationalist. The New Nationalists are now in control of the party, and believe in "inclusive nationalism" - they say that everyone in Lendosa is part of a Lendosan nation, regardless of ethnicity and culture, and that they are bound together by their sense of a Lendosan identity. The Old Nationalists, on the other hand, believe in nationalism as applied to pre-existing groups, particularly ethnic ones, and do not believe a nation can be "created" around nothing more than a set of values.
Originally, the Nationalist Party decidedly favoured Old Nationalism, and sought to "advance and protect the Lendian race". Rabelis, Kha, and other non-Lendian ethnic groups within the country were not considered to be part of "the nation". Slowly, however, a new generation of nationalists came to see "the nation" as a group of people who shared the same ideals and goals, not a group based on "something so insignificant as skin colour". While the New Nationalists now dominate (the party's leader, Julia Verna, is known as one of the most ardent of the New Nationalists), there remains a substantial portion of the party which considers this to be the wrong way to go.
Also of some concern to the Nationalist leadership are those party members who were formerly a part of a group that merged into the Nationalists. Two smaller parties, the Isolationists and the Patriots, both integrated themselves into the Nationalists, although the Isolationists chose to keep their party alive as a distinct "sub-party" rather than assimilate completely. Both have yet to fully accept Nationalist policy in its entirity, and still form distinct factions within the Nationalist Party. In particular, Jamio Lanto of the old Patriotic Party, who strongly supports Old Nationalism, was strongly critical of the lurch towards New Nationalism that occured shortly after he arrived, and the Isolationist leader Delono Esmo is disappointed that the Nationalists have not shifted their foreign policy towards old Isolationist ideas.
Of much less importance, but still worthy of note, is the danger to parties such as the Nationalists from laws about racism. While the Fascist Party is much more likely to run afoul of them, the Nationalist Party must take care to ensure it does not accidentally give the impression of being racist. With New Nationalists in power, this is not likely to be a problem, but a number of Old Nationalists among the party's supporters have made statements which were deemed to "promote belief in the superiority of the Lendian ethnicity". Even if the party itself is not racist, having a racist in any prominent position would be dangerous, and so its leadership must always take care that members are carefully screened.
New Nationalist Subparty
A subparty based on the belief that "nations" are formed by community, common interests, and shared values (as opposed to things such as ethnicity or culture). The New Nationalists believe that a nation, while "natural", is created by the acceptance of its members, not by history or biology. The New Nationalists are sometimes referred to as Neonationalists.
Old Nationalist Subparty
A subparty based on the belief that "nations" are preexisting structures based on historical or biological factors such as ethnicity and culture. The Old Nationalists were once dominant in the Nationalist Party, but gradually lost ground to the New Nationalists.
A subparty based on the belief that true nationalism is best served by minimising interaction between Lendosa and other countries. The Isolationist Subparty takes no particular view on the New versus Old Nationalist debate. Once, the Isolationists were an independent party, but this party (although long-lived) was deemed to be too small to be viable. As the Isolationist Party merged into the Nationalist Party before the official creation of "subparties", the Isolationists came to their own agreement with the Nationalists regarding Isolationist autonomy - when subparties were officially recognised, the Isolationists converted to the new protocols.
History of the Party
The Nationalist Party was established in 259 AP, created by the joint efforts of the Association for the Advancement of Nationalist Thought, the Association for National Pride, and the Association for the Homeland. All of these three organizations were solidly nationalist, and believed in the need to protect "the Lendian race" from attack by outsiders and from "treachery" from the Lendian government. They all believed that it was necessary for each "race" to preserve itself from erosion or weakening (although none shared the viewpoint of the already existing Fascist Party, which believed in competition between races).
The Nationalist Party contested its first election in 260 AP, and won two seats. Many of its supporters were from the more nationalist wings of the old Conservative and Monarchist parties, both of which had recently collapsed. Others came from a growing fear of socialism, prompted by the rapid growth of the Socialist Party to become the third-largest group in the Council.
The party continued to grow - in 275 AP, it won four seats, the most off any "minor" party. Shortly after that, however, Targoto Bargo, the charismatic founder of the party, was killed in a plane crash, and a leadership battle began. The vote was split between "old" and "new" nationalists - the former wanting to keep the party's focus on ethnic nationalism, while the later wanting to focus on building a national identity around those with a common sense of belonging. The New Nationalist faction was too small to take control, however, and the Old Nationalist chief, Constantino Valfaro, became party leader.
Valfaro was not as charismatic as Bargo had been, and also promoted a particularly strong brand of ethnic nationalism. These two factors were the main factors in the Nationalist Party's near collapse at the next elections - the party won two seats, as compared to the six it was likely to receive under Bargo. This sparked a new round of leadership disputes, with the New Nationalists trying to take over the party and the Old Nationalists arguing with themselves over which of their number should replace Valfaro.
Eventually, a moderate by the name of Mico Toranano was chosen as leader. He was seen as acceptable to both the Old and New factions, and was thought to be competent enough to deal with the public properly. The Nationalist Party slowly built up its voter base again, although the "great destiny" Bargo had promised was not in evidence.
In 294 AP, the Nationalist Party was approached by the Fascist Party. The new Fascist leader, Tavo Irigo, proposed a union between the Nationalists, the Fascists, and another group called the Patriotic Association, saying that only by uniting could they have any real influence in the government. The Nationalist leader, Toranano, was initially against the idea, but the majority of the Old Nationalists were in favour, believing that it would dilute the growing influence of the New Nationalists. A vote was held within the Nationalist Party, and the proposal was accepted by the narrowest of margins. Toranano agreed to the wishes of the party, but managed to insist that several other groups, including the tiny Militarist Party and some remnants of the defunct Radical Party, were included as well - Toranano believed that association with the Fascists would hurt the Nationalist Party, and was trying to minimise Fascist influence on the new union by incorperating as many alternative views as possible.
Towards the end of 294 AP, the new Loyalist Party was created. The core of the party was based around the Nationalists, but it incorperated many elements of the other components as well. Initially, the party performed poorly, but later gained momentum (see the Loyalist Party page for details).
In 301 AP, however, the various components of the Loyalist Party began to fall apart. The former members of the Patriotic Association were angry at the ongoing liberalization of the party (as the New Nationalists continued to grow), as were many Militarists and Radicals. The Fascist Party was also angry, but believed that the union should hold together. Eventually, however, the Patriots issued an ultimatum to Toranano (who had been chosen as overall Loyalist leader) to change direction. This was refused, and the party collapsed. Most of the old Nationalist Party was reconstituted, although some of the more ardent of the Old Nationalists chose to join the new Patriotic Party (formed out of the Patriotic Association) instead.
Mico Toranano remained as leader of the Nationalists, trying to keep a moderate position between the Old and New factions. In the 302 AP elections, the Nationalists won five seats. Shortly afterwards, the Patriotic Party, which was disappointed at its own electoral performance, chose to merge itself into the Nationalists (although this was a controversial decision, any many of its members quit rather than become part of the Nationalists). At the beginning of 303, however, Mico Toranano retired from politics, sparking a leadership race between the Old and New wings of the party. This time, the New Nationalists (led by present party chief Julia Verna) took control, and have been turning the party towards their ideology ever since.
List of Past Leaders
- Targoto Bargo (259 - 276)
- Constantino Valfaro (276 - 281)
- Mico Toranano (281 - 294)
- [party not independent] (294 - 301)
- Mico Toranano (301 - 303)
- Julia Verna (303 - )