22 September 2008

Announcing First Annual Seasteading Conference

The seasteading movement is still young, but active--particularly around the west coast of North America and in Hawaii. The first annual seasteading conference will be held at the Burlingame (California) Embassy Suites on October 10th, 2008, beginning at 8 AM. Register by October 8. The event is free for students, $195 for private individuals, and $95 for journalists.

Seasteads are floating islands that provide full-time work and residency for individuals looking for a lifestyle somewhat out of the ordinary.
The Seasteading Institute advocates a modular, incremental approach, where cities are built up one block, or even one house, at a time. Patri says: "Cruise ships already demonstrate that people can live on the ocean in big, movable buildings at reasonable cost. We've got a slightly different design: we're going to build a city out of interconnected floating platforms. That way you'll be able to move cities, and take your house and yard with you! And we are designing these platforms to be comparable in cost to high-end land-based homes."

...."Modern democratic governments are often unresponsive to the needs of their citizens. Our floating cities will change that - if you don't like your government, you'll be able to pull up anchor and sail to a better one, or start your own. Imagine the reduction in worldwide violence if Israel could just move away from Palestine, Georgia from Russia, or Hong Kong from China. On floating cities, this is actually possible!" _Source
Seasteads can be designed for a wide range of floating environments, from a sheltered cove, bay, or harbour, to the natural hazards of the open ocean. Likewise, these floating islands can fly under the flag of a recognised nation, but will eventually fly under their own flags--once political and legal accommodations can be made.

For much more information, go to www.seasteading.org where you can read the online fact-filled seasteading book.

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Blogger Bob said...

You notice that their solution to the Israel/Palestinian problem requires that the Israelis be driven into the sea?

Monday, 22 September, 2008  
Blogger Snake Oil Baron said...

Yeah, the Israel thing was a hoot and I also imagine that Georgians are rather fond of their homeland even if it is in a bad neighborhood. Some people seem to see territorial disputes as a "lack of land" issue when they are nothing of the kind.

But there would certainly be political effects to seasteading. Forget the potential for brain drains and capital flight. What if an actual free market society could be set up and might risk dispelling the myth that large sections of human life like education and health care can not exist and thrive without big government and unions? Of course, the first thing these settlements will need is defensive measures against not just pirates but politicians. (I know, I know - worst redundancy ever!)

Monday, 22 September, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

Go ahead and laugh, but I know some Israelis who might jump at the chance to take to the sea in a nicely outfitted seastead. Morale under Olmert has not been the best.

I suspect the early seasteads will fly a national flag, for the sake of appearances. They will come under maritime law and laws of the sea, and cannot be allowed to constitute a navigational hazard.

The seasteading book at seasteading.org looks at quite a few of the important planning issues, but the conference itself might be fun just to see what all the people are doing and planning now.

Monday, 22 September, 2008  
Blogger Bert said...

"[T]he first thing these settlements will need is defensive measures"

I agree, but I think it's likely that seasteads would pay 'protection money' to some existing state. They'd formally be self-governing enclaves paying some kind of taxes in return for military protection against aggressors.

This could work for 'landsteads' too. It wouldn't take new technology for a group to start a society in some unpopulated region of, for instance, Russia; and the Russians could use the money. (Whether Russia could be trusted is a different matter.) In theory, this could happen in Sweden too -- we have plenty of empty land lying around -- but Swedish authorities would be most uncooperative.

Monday, 22 September, 2008  
Blogger neil craig said...

No true Zionist would be willing to give up the promised land for the promised sea. However I could see Israel increasing its size substantially by building out to sea. Chicago & los angeles too.

However the greatest economic advantage will probably be the ability to get out from under government regulations & taxes in Hong Kong style. Monsanto & Morgan Stanley might rather like to invest in that.

Tuesday, 23 September, 2008  

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