Paypal founder, Libertarian, and billionaire Peter Thiel has recently invested $1.25 million to create and promote floating micro-countries. Thiel’s investment into The Seasteading Institute, co-founded by Patri Friedman and Wayne Gramlich, comes with the hope of “experimenting with new ideas for government.” For those unfamiliar with Seasteading, it is the concept of creating permanent living spaces at sea , outside the territory and jurisdiction of any government or standing nation.
These autonomous and mobile communities in theory would operate in international waters and could, ostensibly, run the gamut of various forms of government, one such theory would allow for a Libertarian style of government absent of welfare, minimum wage, and weapons restrictions.
Part of Thiel’s plan it to launch a flotilla office park off the coast of San Francisco next year and anticipates full settlement of the first island nation in 2019. In addition, Thiel and the Seasteading Institute aim to have 10 million floating residents by the end of 2050.
While critics and doubters may raise questions as to the likelihood and plausibility of such a grand venture, that seems to be of little concern to the ambitious businessman as he stated, “We don’t really need to worry about those people very much, because since they don’t think it’s possible they won’t take us very seriously. And they will not actually try to stop us until it’s too late.”
A blatant example of hubris or simply clear ambition and determination… time will undoubtedly tell.