How to bootstrap a free society?

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by nsixecho on April 24th, 2016

In the scenario where a deal is made with an existing government, and a piece of land is acquired with complete allodial title, what type of bootstrap process would we aim for? Would the first movers need to bring a stock pile of food, water, and other supplies and have the knowledge and skills to quickly become self sufficient? Or would we make sure that part of the deal with the neighboring government includes the ability to travel back and forth across the border to import supplies while the free market infrastructure has a chance to establish?

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3 Comments

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Quinton: This is a really great
Sun, 04/24/2016 - 20:02

This is a really great question. I think there are a lot of ways to look at this and not necessarily one right or wrong answer.

Being somebody who has started many businesses myself, I always try to do everything I can in a business without adding any money first. I want to test as many angles and options as possible before I actually commit money. The last thing I want to do in a business is add funds before I know I will get those funds back. I would rather try to find ways to actually make money so that the business can support its own growth as opposed to raising a lump sum of money and hoping for the best.

So in regards to a free society I would lean more towards doing as much as possible without actually doing anything involving land or infrastructure. Before even making a deal with another country I would first think that we would have a base of like 20,000 or more active people who participate in Crowd Freedom. I would first think that before making a deal with another country we would already have a lot of the workings of a free society done through some Internet application where property, legal disputes and all these things are already fairly understood by people.

Once we get to that stage I think a foundation would be built similar to how other cities have been built. I think a good example to go off would be something like Hong Kong. We could research and understand how starting a city would work and we could better understand the costs of this type of thing. This is research that I'm continuing to do myself as I build out Crowd Freedom and I'm sure many other people would help to contribute to this.

But there's different ways to look at this. If it really is profitable for a business to start a free society, which I think it is, then this type of thing will be figured out pretty quickly and the funds to accomplish this will come pretty quickly as well. But I just don't think enough people are looking in this direction yet so we're not really seeing progress in this direction. That's why I think we need to get more people involved first to discuss these things throughout the Internet. A free society needs to first become a trend that people throughout the world want so that people who have money can start thinking in this direction. I guess what I'm trying to say is we as people who want a free society need to sell the idea better.

I think Seasteading is currently facing this type of challenge. Seasteading hasn't really caught on yet because I don't think people fully understand how to make money doing it. And there's lot of pieces to it. It's just still too new I think for people to really put it all together yet. From what I've researched in Seasteading a lot of people are having a hard time getting investors behind it because most investors are on a different page I think. Or most investors don't think it will work. And maybe it won't. Or maybe it won't work the way they're trying to do it. But there is a way to make something work that is better than what we currently have and profitable. And this is what first needs to be figured out I think.

I think the actual bootstrap phase of executing on it may be a bit premature at this point. How it would work could go a lot of different ways. But as I said earlier it may be better to have it something closer to Hong Kong where there is a lot of money put up so people living there don't have to grind through a 3rd world lifestyle for like 10 years while they're getting things going. It would be great if a company could just put the money up and have things more modern and civilized out of the gate but still cheaper than any other existing country.

I think from what you're suggesting in your question would be moreso if we made a deal with a country but didn't really have any money behind the operation. And in this sense I'm not really sure exactly how that would play out. It would be more open to the free market and I think a lot more of how it would work would be depend on the creativity of entrepreneurs and people involved, and there really isn't a way to know that fully ahead of time without some type of central planning.

So maybe here is what I'm saying, I see 2 types of ways to do this: The crowdfunded way and the private way. In the crowdfunded way it is hard to know a lot of the details ahead of time because it is more open to the free market to determine this. And a lot of these decisions would be made in real time and as things evolve. So it wouldn't really be centrally planned as much this way. We'd have an idea of some things, but we wouldn't fully know a lot of the details.

And then the private way would be more centrally planned and I think this would probably follow closer to something like an existing city like Hong Kong. I think this way would put more risk on the investors and would have a lot more opportunity for the people behind it to make a lot of money if they do it right. This would also probably take a lot less time to put up infrastructure and create, but the downside would be that people would probably still be a bit less free (but more free than another existing country).

The public crowdfunded route would be most free way but would also take longer to get off the ground I think. I think this is where you would possibly need to work with neighboring cities to trade and get goods.

Sorry for the convoluted answer, I'm kind of all over the place. But I hope you get something out of this and I'd be curious to hear your take on it as well. Also, thanks for joining :)

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nsixecho: You have sparked many new
Tue, 04/26/2016 - 07:10

You have sparked many new lines of thought for me, which is great! I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the different potential options.

With regard to the private business route, in a way there are already businesses that offer some freedom from government, even if only to a small degree.

Apartment rentals could be one example since they handle property taxes, building permits, etc for the tenants. The costs are passed on, but the government interactions are largely shielded from the tenants, and possibly less taxes are paid in the end. Also some road construction or water and sewer infrastructure is privately managed if it's a larger complex or a high rise.

Amusement parks like Disney World, or cruise ships could be another example. They're focus isn't on permanent residence of course, but they do manage quite a bit of infrastructure and shield all the regulations involved with that from the customers.

So when you mention a private business starting a free society, I imagine it being along these lines. Basically the business would handle whatever interactions were necessary with the outside governments to provide a shielded experience for the tenants. And that same business would own all the land and provide a large amount of the infrastructure and maybe lease out land or buildings within the shielded area for other businesses.

But like you said, it would be less free than a fully free society. All the land within a large area would be owned by one entity. They could be kept somewhat in check by competition from other businesses trying the same thing in other areas. But depending on the tenant's situation, taking advantage of that could mean finding a new job, starting a new business, setting up a new place, living far from family, making new friends, etc. In general very difficult to do. So once tenants are established, I don't understand what mechanism would prevent the business from getting away with lower and lower quality, and basically going the same way as the existing governments?

In my mind, the crowd funding approach would be the better option since there would be many land owners within the same area. I think this would be key for free market competition to truly work. But avoiding the 3rd world lifestyle during the initial stages seems to be a chicken and the egg situation. For example, grocery stores aren't generally built until there's a decent population, but there won't be much population until a there's a grocery store. This could be worked around if the neighboring government granted freedom of travel and free trade across the border so the free society population could just drive across the border to get groceries while it becomes more self sufficient, but the government may not agree to that until the society is already largely self sufficient. Otherwise they'd be viewed as allowing "free riders" a place to live.

I'm mainly just thinking out loud. I'd love to hear more ideas about this.

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Quinton: Yeah, you're on the same page
Tue, 04/26/2016 - 22:47

Yeah, you're on the same page as me. I see it exactly this way with the private business route.

You're right about amusement parks and cruise ships. Some of the Seastead people are looking to do just that: a cruise ship that is a country.

So once tenants are established, I don't understand what mechanism would prevent the business from getting away with lower and lower quality, and basically going the same way as the existing governments?

What keeps any business from getting away with lower quality? A lot of businesses get better and better over time. Some get worse. But it totally varies. But I don't think it is right to assume that a privately owned society would get worse over time. I think it could be equally valid to assume it would get better over time, especially with competition.

But the thing is, by the time there are just a few private cities running that are outside of any government control, I think we would see crowd funded cities jump up right behind them, where it would be much harder for one to go down in quality. I think once people realize they can have societies outside of government, as led by private companies, then I think people would be much quicker to go for it completely on their own without a private business.

But avoiding the 3rd world lifestyle during the initial stages seems to be a chicken and the egg situation

Yeah I agree. But it's not much different than starting a business. When you start any business the initial steps are super, super hard. It's like pushing a boulder up a hill. You're going up against great odds and have no momentum behind you. It starts really, really slow and you do what you can to continue building it better and better. You slowly pick up more and more momentum, but that initial phase is usually slow and grinding, which is why so few people start new businesses. It's a pain in the ass, but I'm used to that, I've been doing that my whole life.

You have great ideas and I think we're on the same page. Please post any other questions you have or any other problems you see with this. Appreciate your input :)

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