Millionaire funds Rapture-esque offshore country

Nearly all videogame stories are flights of fancy. Even “realistic” modern shooters like the recent Modern Warfare titles and the upcoming Battlefield 3 are only loosely based on extrapolations of current-world situations. So I was genuinely amazed to read that billionaire PayPal founder Peter Thiel is investing in a scheme that could see a country built at sea — one that mirrors BioShock’s own Rapture.

Ok, he’s not gone crazy and built an entire city under the sea, but Thiel has invested $1.25 million into a scheme called Seasteading, which aims to create a floating community off the coast of San Francisco. Yes, micro nations aren’t uncommon, but the Seasteading initiative mirror’s Andrew Ryan’s city in that it will be a city governed by libertarian principals by virtue of being in international waters. Some of the things promised for the city will be “no welfare, looser building codes, no minimum wage, and few restrictions on weapons.”

Right now the whole thing is planned as an experiment for roughly 270 people but the long-term plan is to expand the city to house “millions by 2050.” I wonder if they have a plan to work on a genetic program that allows you to shoot bees out of your hands. Just a thought.

(Oh, and let this be the only time I ever link to a Daily Mail article. Feel like I need a shower now.)

Silicon Valley billionaire reveals plan to launch floating ‘start up country’ off San Francisco [Daily Mail — Thanks, Steve] [Image]

Alasdair Duncan