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What would you create if you could start your own nation?

I love my family, but I am sure I was switched at birth. Most of my relatives are hard-working, practical and realistic.

These are all very good traits.

But practical and realistic sometimes translates into reluctance to take risks or do something different.

On the other hand, almost from conception, I’ve been fascinated by those who step outside the box, who dream big and work to create something that’s never been done before. Even when the odds are close to impossible.

Imagine those who first ventured out from the old world to the shores of North America – usually leaving everyone and everything they knew behind. In most cases, once they were gone, it was forever.

They did it for something unexplainable. A dream. A vision. A wildly unrealistic idea.

Maybe they were crazy.

They wanted to build something better than what they had. And, though these ideals are not confined to the new world, it is these same sorts of people who created railroads, automobiles, airplanes, telephones, televisions, computers, the internet … and even landed humans on the moon.

All of these ideas – and millions more that we now take for granted – were unrealistic before they were possible. All of these ideas were created by entrepreneurs, even if they did not call themselves that.

Today, there are pioneers exploring a new frontier. Unexpectedly it’s not space and it’s not technology, though it does have a technology component. They’re dreaming of creating a new New World on earth – without the limitations of existing governments. Since there is no unclaimed land left for starting a new country, they’re turning to the sea.

To understand the issue they’re trying to resolve, watch this short cartoon, The Impossible Dream

These entrepreneurial pioneers want to build something they call ‘seasteads’ (like the homesteads of the past) on platforms in the ocean (in international waters). The seasteads will not have any of the usual barriers to working internationally – no visas, no immigration requirements – and, among other things, no taxes. They are not hippy farms or utopia communes. Nope. Instead they will be places for experimenting with alternatives to government – and incubators for leading edge technology start-ups. By the way, they already have a long list of companies ready to come on board once they have the first seastead in place.

And “if starting your own kingdom or living in a new utopia are not exactly top of your to-do list right now,” says Roger James Hamilton, “here’s a final thought: If, while many people are blaming their governments or local economies for their woes, a small group of entrepreneurs can come up with a plan as bold and audacious as this, where the problems of government simply go away… What apparent obstacle are you currently facing in your business which, with a simple shift in solution, will make your obstacles simply disappear?”

Now that’s the kind of questioning that happens when entrepreneurs and innovators risk the impractical for something much much greater.

For more information see: Seasteading 


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