Starting a Micronation vs. Finding a Free Country

I know this is an absolute waste of my time, (and probably a waste of your time if you are reading this), but I have been following the progress of Liberland (http://www.liberland.org). As a vice I think it is harmless. Liberland is an impractical undertaking, but it has my attention because it attracted 300,000 applications for citizenship. The concept of Liberland is to claim a 3 square mile bit of land on the Danube between Serbia and Croatia that neither country claims for some odd reason, and is now effectively a no-man’s-land.

I have been thinking more about this project and it is clear that it is doable. Not necessarily in the “no man’s” land between Croatia and Serbia without their prior approval, and not as a “free market libertarian” free for all, but it would be possible under different circumstances.

First of all the territory would have to be completely open either by permission of the host country, agreement by the neighbors of some disputed territory, or by circumstances. I cannot imagine any circumstances presenting themselves other than man made islands out in international waters. I think this is possible but it raises the price and technical complexity of such an operation immensely. I think it would be better to look at permission or agreement. I am sure it would be possible to set up an independent or at least autonomous system on some remote island or territory at the permission of the country. (This is the concept around which Startup Cities Institute is focused upon — formerly Free Cities: http://www.startupcities.org/) The location might not be initially appealing or advantageous but look at Hong Kong. A more miserable place would have been hard to find. But stability (in the form British ships and troops), rule of law, and money attracted people from all around the world.

The next issue is who to attract/invite. Not the unemployed libertarian philosophy students from around the world (who seem to be flocking to Liberland in the hope of being able to continue talking about libertarianism without actually ever having to work). The first 10,000 citizenships should be auctioned off in tranches of 500 to 1000 a batch sometime between preliminary authorization from the host country but prior to any actual settling. These citizenships would involve a financial risk so only the wealthy would buy them and probably at a great discount to what could be charged after the system is up and running. This will give seed money to the organization, create buzz as the citizenships are auctioned off on the Internet, and provide a viable group of entrepreneurs who are willing to put their money where their mouth is while at the same time getting prospective citizenship at a fraction of what it will cost afterward (or elsewhere). Toss in a few eccentric billionaires, and you could have a real project.

I know… I could be more productive collecting toothpicks with images of Jesus on them, but as I said before, as far as vices go this is rather harmless.

About fafc

The goal of the “Find a Free Country Project” is to research, explore and find a safe and secure free country outside the USA, that is not too large, has a relatively open immigration policy, has a friendly business climate, has a non-intrusive government committed to freedom, and then move to it.

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17 Responses to Starting a Micronation vs. Finding a Free Country

  1. ◄Dave► says:

    You might find this interview of the “President” of Liberland interesting:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMWyRDaQiS0&hd=1

    … I did. ◄Dave►

  2. fafc says:

    Another idea I had, in addition to auctioning off citizenship, is to auction off “residency visas”. Residency visas can be very valuable for citizens of countries that offer tax benefits to non-residents. But to avoid domicile tax status you need to have a legal residence some where else (and usually stay out of the country 6 months or more). Many countries use residency visas to attract wealthy people to live in or at least invest in their countries. For instance Montenegro has a nice visa that involves making a bout a $50,000 USD investment of some sort, and then you get a visa and don’t have to pay taxes on anything made outside of Montenegro. You might never even set foot in Montenegro, but you have a legal residence outside your country. It would be interesting to see how similar residence visas would sell in a more realistic micronation.

      • ◄Dave► says:

        Interesting thoughts. You should actually publish them here.

        Have you ever heard of Doug Casey or Tom Woods? Tom, a consummate libertarian thinker/writer, has a daily podcast that I enjoy following. He recently interviewed Casey, who has a unique hobby that right up the alley of this blog. I am sure you would not regret investing half an hour in listening to the interview. It is available at:

        http://tomwoods.com/podcast/ep-421-doug-casey-on-protecting-your-wealth-against-government-and-building-a-free-country-in-africa/

        Enjoy. 🙂 ◄Dave►

        • fafc says:

          I will try to find the time, but Africa is one place I don’t want to visit let alone move to. There were a free people who moved to Africa to create a free country. They created Rhodesia and South Africa. Now they are being exterminated. No I don’t think so.

          Yesterday in honor of the 800th Anniversary of the Magna Carta I created a Proposal for creating a Free Market Micronation. It is based roughly on the above idea. Maybe I will post it. However, I find myself not really believing it. People are too stupid to do the right thing. They will only do the right thing after they have exhausted every other alternative. The simplest most logical solution is to find a pre-existing country that shows promise and move to it. The more people who do so who have a freedom loving character will only improve upon the place. Why try to create a new country when you can just move to one that already exists?

        • fafc says:

          I listened to the interview, and it was interesting. I cannot say I have any interest in living in Africa. There is a very good reason why Africa is the way it is. And it isn’t because of the evil white man. I could go live in any ghetto in the USA and probably have a better chance of success. That aside it was an interesting interview.

  3. Croatian Capitalist says:

    I think the “finding a free country” option is the only realistic one at this moment in time, because why would someone go through all the trouble of founding a new country (or an autonomous community in some remote region) if good countries that are generally heading in the right direction already exist? Founding a new country or an autonomous community only becomes a realistic option if you can find hundreds (at a minimum) of quality people who don’t believe such a country exists.

    I posted my plans in regards to emigration on the forum, and I firmly believe that at least one of them will work out for me, that notwithstanding I also believe that it would be a good idea to at least figure out good locations for starting a new community, and I agree that Africa would definitely not be a good place for that, I think that the new community would have to be located somewhere in Europe or Asia or Oceania, the only location that I have found so far which I think would be good (if you don’t mind the (very) cold weather) is Chukotka, since it is rich in almost every important resource, is extremely sparsely populated and I can’t see anyone being bothered to bother a small community of Westerners trying to build a new life for themselves there.

    • fafc says:

      I agree, but people are not rational animals. Everyone I have approached with this either tells me 1. I will never do it even though you are right, or 2. you may be right but I will never leave my country!!!!!

      Then when I suggest going to some miserable shithole in the middle of nowhere with the idea of developing a new country from nothing they all jump up and down like 5 year olds at the candy store. So…..

      Who knows? So much in life is based upon what people believe versus what is real. Reality and logic can be very confining.

      • Croatian Capitalist says:

        Yes, the majority of people in most countries are not rational, but I don’t see a reason to try to recruit such people in either case, since they would only do damage to the target country or new community (kind of like the people who flee socialism in their home countries, but then when they get the right to vote in their new countries, they vote for the socialist/leftist candidates).

        • fafc says:

          I appreciate what you are saying, but after 2 years of effort I have at most 3 active users to this website. To put it simply, this approach is not working. Marketing is an important issue in anything you do, and this product is simply not selling.

          • Croatian Capitalist says:

            Even if the marketing of this website was better, it wouldn’t make some gigantic difference (maybe you would have 20 or 30 active users instead of 3, but it would still be a far cry from being a massive movement), looking at things realistically, the non-rational people in America will believe that the USA is the greatest country in the World for as long the TV keeps telling them it is so, while the rational ones for the most part probably either have already put into motion their plan to move to some other country, or have a back-up plan destination decided in case that the USA really does go under, all of that makes the pool of potential American recruits for this website rather small, so you really shouldn’t beat yourself-up about it.

  4. Croatian Capitalist says:

    Some interesting news in regards to Chukotka and the rest of the Russian Far East: http://www.themoscowtimes.com/article/b2b-advanced-development-territories/523673.html

    • fafc says:

      This looks extremely interesting, only I rather think Chukotka is a bit too harsh for anyone other than hardcore miners, loggers, etc. Not really a place to settle down with the family. On the other hand, Vladivostock looks wonderful. Yes, it is part of Siberia, but has a temperate climate, easy access to China, South Korea, Japan, and the rest of Asia (at least it should have easy access), and the Trans Siberian RR going all the way to Moscow.

      • Croatian Capitalist says:

        Well, that’s one of the reasons I think that it would be good to get multiple locations of different types, since people have different preferences in regards to weather, terrain, culture, etc., the primary reason I like Chukotka is because in my view the new community there would be isolated from the problems (which I don’t realistically see being fixed anytime soon) of the general Russian society.

        If I decided to move to an already settled area/city in Russia, I would probably move to Sochi or somewhere else in Krasnodar Krai, but if I decided to move to the Russian Far East, then I would probably move to Khabarovsk, since Vladivostok to my knowledge has problems with pollution.

  5. fafc says:

    My final take on Liberland:

    If you want to get something in this world you have essentially two choices:

    1. Give someone else something he or she wants in exchange for what you want (the basis of libertarian ideology), or

    2. Take what you want by force, guile, or by other means.

    The dealings with Serbia and Croatia show a complete misunderstanding of this. Instead of asking, “What would Serbia and Croatia want?” Liberland supporters are declaring what they want: A Libertarian Free Market Utopia!!!!!

    Yeah!

    However, do the governments of either Serbia or Croatia have any interest in having a Libertarian Free Market Utopia on their border? Since both countries are run by unrepentant second generation communists who have a profound distrust of free markets and probably don’t even know about libertarian beliefs, I think it would be fair to state that the answer to this question is a two letter word that begins with “N” and ends in “O”.

    What is truly ironic is that libertarians of all people are incapable of comprehending this situation. You are not going to get what you want because you want it. You are going to have to negotiate with others in good faith and come to an agreement that is mutually beneficial, or you are going to have take it by force or guile. What did libertarians decide to do here? “Take” a disputed piece of land and declare it a free republic. They chose the second non-libertarian route, and they did so with no concept of how they were going to actually take and hold the property. Could you get any less libertarian?

    The entire concept of Liberland goes against everything that libertarians believe in. Is it any surprise that it is not working? What I find surprising is that libertarians were so quick to abandon their libertarian ideals in favor of fantasies based upon anti-libertarian methods that depend on aggression or trickery.

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