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Old 08-16-2011, 09:07 PM   #1
jawathehutt
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Real life bioshock

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...140840896.html
Even if it fails it could be turned into a giant cosplay stage for bioshock fans.



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Old 08-16-2011, 09:39 PM   #2
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No $***? That's seriously awesome. I'm interested.

HEY Q! Looks like there might be a place for libertarians to see some kind of success afterall! How's "President Ron Paul of the libertarian islands" sound?

It sounds crazy and perhaps even foolhardy. Many great ideas out of their time start out that way. We'll see how it goes down, though. Nice catch.


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Old 08-16-2011, 10:13 PM   #3
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Wow...

I just hope they put some of that money into a decent size navy, otherwise, the whole international waters thing will turn into a big bullseye on them for pirates. Outside jurisdiction of international laws also means outside the protection of the law.

Not only that, unless they can get officially recognized by the UN as a sovereign country, any country that decides they want to annex the island pretty much can just claim it without any complaints from anyone.

Yea, if they get this thing built, it's not going to end well.


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Old 08-16-2011, 10:23 PM   #4
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I'm more worried about their philosophy of living. If such thing was built it would not survive nearly as much as Rapture did. And they won't even need ADAM to speed their downfall.


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Old 08-16-2011, 10:27 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTA:SWcity View Post
How's "President Ron Paul of the libertarian islands" sound?
Ron Paul isn't a libertarian, he is against everything. The man once told Dow Chemical to dredge a navigable water way. Problem is only the Army Corps of Engineers can dredge a navigable water way in the U.S. Good obstetrician, not so great congressman.

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Old 08-16-2011, 11:58 PM   #6
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Aww damn, you're all ruining my head in the clouds moment!

@mim: I guess I really need an emoticon. BTW nice video...Michael./reply

Actually, while I wholeheartedly support the idea in principle, I am rather doubtful of it in a feasibility aspect in practice. To be realistic there are a multitude of problems with it:

Maintenance and structural soundness: because they're essentially living on a stationary boat fortress (oil rig platform). That alone is a bitch to maintain (coming from a guy who fixed his own Honda Accord carburetor because no mechanic would TOUCH it). Labor population. Labor costs $$$

Livability and infrastructure: plumbing, heat, electrical, and that's just for starters. Supplying it is another issue. Also is an issue to fix problems with housing as it arises. Also keeping it navigable, whatever way that be, also an issue. More, more, more labor population. More labor costs $$$

Economy and sustainability: it's already problematic enough on land to farm, can you imagine what a problem it would be to have your own farming on artificial land? Also some significant lifestyle adjustments are not only necessary but an absolute requirement. Hope you're not allergic to seafood. Businesses in an ideal fortress land (which life is far from as there are always problems that arise which you didn't count on) would have to thrive and last on their own assuming the legal structure and authority on the platform allowed them independence and weren't required to be integrated into the fortress. Which brings me to my next one...

Law: Far be it from me to stereotype libertarians as "anarchists who have no idea how much things cost", the truth of the matter here is that, say it were similar to America but different enough to allow the libertarian view to prevail, there will always be disagreements given that any two beigns inherently have different views because they aren't one in the same. So a legal structure of some form or another is essential in order to keep it civil. That's just the basics. BTW more costs to maintain a legal structure = $$$.

Furthermore it needs to be recognized as its own country which is a can of worms in itself. I'll just direct you to BobLion's post above.

Threats: Whether it is in the external form of Somali Pirates or the military of another country, a military of its own is absolutely essential so that you aren't sunk to the bottom of the seas or raided. Bon Voyage! BTW military costs = $$$.
INTERNAL threats: sabotage be it political or physical. 'Nuff said.

So it's plain to see that while this is a nice thing to behold, it is a pipe dream. I'd say maybe consider buying some island as a first step since it would at least lessen the problems with having to fully depend on a platform out in the middle of the sea to live on and it's just better to live on solid ground anyways. The other problems, BY THE WAY, *will* still exist.


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Old 08-17-2011, 11:25 AM   #7
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If I were them I wouldn't worry much about other countries, since the major backers of this project are rich and influential enough that they could likely avoid that sort of attack.

And no pirate is going to pose a threat to a place where insanely rich people are allowed to buy any weapon they can afford. Any attack would become an utter massacre. People would be sitting on their balconies, drinking expensive scotch, and making bets on who could bag the most pirates, not cowering in fear.

"Freedom from any existing law" does not mean "no law"; it means "not bound by any nation's law but its own". You can tell because they mention "looser building codes", not "no building codes". So there wouldn't be the issue of utter lawlessness, though it would still be very vulnerable to an internal takeover by anyone who decides to bring enough well-armed thugs.

The technical and maintenance problems are still almost insurmountably huge though. I could only see it being realistically sustainable if they had a ton of robots to do certain types of work. Which I don't see as realistic as of this moment.



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Old 08-17-2011, 01:28 PM   #8
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Sounds like The Republic of Minvera all over again:
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In 1971, barges loaded with sand arrived from Australia, bringing the reef level above the water and allowing construction of a small tower and flag. The Republic of Minerva issued a declaration of independence on 19 January 1972, in letters to neighboring countries and even created their own currency. In February 1972, Morris C. Davis was elected as Provisional President of the Republic of Minerva.

The declaration of independence, however, was greeted with great suspicion by other countries in the area. A conference of the neighboring states (Australia, New Zealand, Tonga, Fiji, Nauru, Western Samoa, Cook Islands) met on 24 February 1972 at which Tonga made a claim over the Minerva Reefs.

On 15 June 1972, the following proclamation was published in a Tongan government gazette:

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PROCLAMATION

His Majesty King Taufaʻahau Tupou IV in Council DOES HEREBY PROCLAIM:
WHEREAS the Reefs known as North Minerva Reef and South Minerva Reef have long served as fishing grounds for the Tongan people and have long been regarded as belonging to the Kingdom of Tonga has now created on these Reefs islands known as Teleki Tokelau and Teleki Tonga; AND WHEREAS it is expedient that we should now confirm the rights of the Kingdom of Tonga to these islands; THEREFORE we do hereby AFFIRM and PROCLAIM that the islands, rocks, reefs, foreshores and waters lying within a radius of twelve miles [19.31 km] thereof are part of our Kingdom of Tonga.
A Tongan expedition was sent to enforce the claim. The Republic of Minerva flag was lowered. Tonga’s claim was recognized by the South Pacific Forum in September 1972. Meanwhile, Provisional President Davis was fired by founder Michael Oliver and the project collapsed in confusion.

...

In 1982, a group of Americans led again by Morris C. “Bud” Davis tried to occupy the reefs, but were forced off by Tongan troops after three weeks. In recent years several groups have allegedly sought to re-establish Minerva. No claimant group has to date made any attempt to take possession of the Minerva Reefs territory.
Getting annexed by Tonga: good going there, libertarians.



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Old 08-17-2011, 02:11 PM   #9
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Difference is they weren't billionaires. Considering a single one of the investors in this project has a fortune 5x the size of Tonga's GDP, and likely has more political pull, I suspect any similar attempt by a tiny country to take this place would be the definition of a curb-stomp battle.

As I mentioned before, there are a ton of issues that would be tough to address, but I reckon this project is more likely to succeed than previous ones. Mainly because instead of being one crazy millionaire's pipe dream, it's a bunch of crazy billionaires' pipe dream, and they seem to actually be going step by step, not leaping in face first.

I hope the project is made, if only because it would be very interesting to see how things turn out. A society actually based on libertarian ideals is even rare than a society actually based on communist ideals. Both are interesting to see in action.



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Old 08-17-2011, 02:17 PM   #10
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Old 08-17-2011, 05:00 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Liverandbacon View Post
Difference is they weren't billionaires. Considering a single one of the investors in this project has a fortune 5x the size of Tonga's GDP, and likely has more political pull, I suspect any similar attempt by a tiny country to take this place would be the definition of a curb-stomp battle.
Yes, the investors are billionaires rather than millionaires, but (a) the actual amount going in (at this point) is $1.25m, which is not anywhere close to the GDP of Tonga, and (b) a military requires both considerable man-power and considerable wealth to maintain, usually supported by taxation since it would so diminish a personal fortune.

Building a nation in international waters is one thing. Keeping it is quite another.



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Old 08-17-2011, 06:34 PM   #12
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Some more information:

Quote:
Thiel posited that one possible model for government be based on a corporation which ‘starts a country as a business’; he calls it Appletopia. It would be tantamount to a benevolent dictatorship where “citizenship is a free agency”. Thiel and his partners envision a sort of cartel of governments forcing a competition between governments in desirability to attract the choicest citizens onto their barge.
Seasteading’s Friedman believes that the city-states will start off small but aims to have millions of residents by the year 2050. The prototype plan is a 12,000-ton structure which will be able to house 270 residents and have the ability to interlock with similar structures. The project aims to take off from the coast of San Francisco next year, and within 7 years be recognized by the United Nations.
http://news.yahoo.com/peter-thiel-fu...060605195.html

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Old 08-17-2011, 08:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth InSidious View Post
Yes, the investors are billionaires rather than millionaires, but (a) the actual amount going in (at this point) is $1.25m, which is not anywhere close to the GDP of Tonga, and (b) a military requires both considerable man-power and considerable wealth to maintain, usually supported by taxation since it would so diminish a personal fortune.

Building a nation in international waters is one thing. Keeping it is quite another.
The 1.25 million is not the full amount going in; it is the amount from one investor alone. However, that's irrelevant. He doesn't need to spend his wealth (which is significantly greater than Tonga's), it's the fact that he has it that makes an attack unlikely. I don't doubt these investors and their companies have more political pull than the smallest nations out there, which would make a takeover, even a successful one, a pretty dumb move. Whatever value this place could have comes from the ideas it was founded on. If another country took it over, it'd be pretty much worthless to them, and they'd have a bunch of foreign relations headaches to deal with. I'm assuming these guys won't be dumb enough to build in a current nation's territory. If the inhabitants of this place know where to look, and aren't too worried about ethics, they certainly have the funds to buy resources that would make them a serious threat to any would-be invaders. Perhaps not the attacking force, but certainly the people left back at home. Pirates could be easily dealt with by the inhabitants, considering they'd be significantly better armed. A standing military would not be needed. They could just buy enough powerful weaponry to fend of an attack for a decent length of time, until whatever mercenary outfits they have on-call can get there, and even that seems like overkill to me.

Keeping the nation would be a challenge, but not because of pirates or tiny nations like Tonga. It would be a challenge because of engineering issues, dubious economic sustainability, and the risk of internal conflict.



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Old 08-18-2011, 01:42 AM   #14
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Hey I like the idea too. Still, even supposing a successful getting off the ground, there's a few other nations or entities that will try to annex it, though. Nations who'll never stop trying. I'm thinking the more well off nations. If not militarily then covertly through subversion politically or economically.

I can picture someone like Soros trying to choke them off by getting companies in which he has investments to play economic warfare. The guy is a bastard IMO (and his head would look good in a vise), but the strategy is there: cut off the supply lines, you cut their power.


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Old 08-18-2011, 06:43 AM   #15
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Quote:
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If I were them I wouldn't worry much about other countries, since the major backers of this project are rich and influential enough that they could likely avoid that sort of attack.
So, you're saying that their political influence will be great enough that other countries won't do anything about them basically setting up a safe haven for drug smugglers, gun runners, and other unseemly people? No matter how influential they are, most countries will view them with a good deal of distrust.


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And no pirate is going to pose a threat to a place where insanely rich people are allowed to buy any weapon they can afford. Any attack would become an utter massacre. People would be sitting on their balconies, drinking expensive scotch, and making bets on who could bag the most pirates, not cowering in fear.
If they are armed enough to not worry about pirates, then you run into the problem again of the rest of the world not being too happy with them. Oh look, that artificial island wannabe country has a large stockpile of weapons! They're obviously not going to use them against us or our ships...

Thing is though, pirates don't attack land. They attack ships. So, no matter how many weapons are on the island, the ships are going to be vulnerable unless they have an escort which likely won't we allowed in the waters under another nation's jurisdiction. The US has trouble keeping people from sneaking though Florida on homemade rafts. Throw in a bunch of high value targets and suddenly, the safe waters around most large countries are a lot less safe because more people will find pirating profitable enough to risk partaking in.

Unless, of course, the island itself becomes the home of the pirates in which case... well, let's just say the world isn't going to be very happy.

Quote:
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"Freedom from any existing law" does not mean "no law"; it means "not bound by any nation's law but its own". You can tell because they mention "looser building codes", not "no building codes". So there wouldn't be the issue of utter lawlessness, though it would still be very vulnerable to an internal takeover by anyone who decides to bring enough well-armed thugs.
You're right, but their laws are so far from the rest of the world that they would have a hard time finding support from anyone for any kind of protection status. Any nation willing to sponsor them will want a say in their laws. So, either they'll basically be under the laws of another country or they'll be on their own leaving them vulnerable to any nation claiming it, which will happen if it does well enough to be worth taking.


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Old 08-18-2011, 11:28 AM   #16
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Old 08-18-2011, 12:40 PM   #17
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Old 08-18-2011, 01:01 PM   #18
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I wish I had only 20% of what that guy is putting into the project right now. What a great way to blow money.



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Old 08-18-2011, 01:45 PM   #19
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Quote:
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So, you're saying that their political influence will be great enough that other countries won't do anything about them basically setting up a safe haven for drug smugglers, gun runners, and other unseemly people? No matter how influential they are, most countries will view them with a good deal of distrust.
It would be less of a safe haven than international waters already are. If I were a smuggler, I'd prefer to be on a boat that could meet up with customers anywhere on the ocean, not confined to a stationary platform. If anything, other countries would like having such a place around, since unlike thousands of square miles of ocean, it'd be an easy to watch location, allowing them to identify any nefarious individuals dumb enough to use it. So yes, that's exactly what I'm saying.

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If they are armed enough to not worry about pirates, then you run into the problem again of the rest of the world not being too happy with them. Oh look, that artificial island wannabe country has a large stockpile of weapons! They're obviously not going to use them against us or our ships...

Thing is though, pirates don't attack land. They attack ships. So, no matter how many weapons are on the island, the ships are going to be vulnerable unless they have an escort which likely won't we allowed in the waters under another nation's jurisdiction. The US has trouble keeping people from sneaking though Florida on homemade rafts. Throw in a bunch of high value targets and suddenly, the safe waters around most large countries are a lot less safe because more people will find pirating profitable enough to risk partaking in.
You are vastly overestimating the abilities and equipment of modern pirates. There's a wide gap between 'heavily armed enough to not worry about pirates' and 'heavily armed enough for the rest of the world to panic'. Ships wouldn't need an escort, they'd just need an armed crew.


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they'll be on their own leaving them vulnerable to any nation claiming it, which will happen if it does well enough to be worth taking.
If they did well enough to be worth taking (which I actually think is doubtful), it would be because of their unique policies, since the location itself has little to no inherent value. A takeover by foreign government would be the end of that uniqueness, leaving that country with nothing but a tiny piece of real estate in the middle of the ocean, one that cost lives and/or money to take. There would be no point to such a takeover.

Again, I think the project is most likely going to fail, but I would be very surprised if it was because of any external aggression.



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