Pay Pal founder and early Facebook investor Peter Thiel has donated $1.25 million to create floating libertarian countries in international waters where they would be free from any current laws and regulations. The funding runs through Seasteading Institute which seeks to build sovereign nations on oil-rig like platforms.
Plans for the prototype include a movable, diesel-powered 12,000-ton structure that could house 270 residents. Seasteading chief Petri Friedman hopes to have tens of millions of residents living on hundreds of banded-together platforms by 2050. Within a few decades, the goal is to establish United Nations–recognized sovereign nations that get their food and energy from trading with other countries.
Friedman says the group plans to launch an office park off the San Francisco coast next year with the first full-time settlements following seven years later. Friedman and Thiel expect the entrepreneurial zeal of seasteading to prevail where other libertarian utopias have failed.
There are quite a lot of people who think it’s not possible, Thiel said at a Seasteading Institute Conference in 2009. That’s a good thing. We don’t need to really 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.