Ephemerisle: Get in on The Second Deck of the Floating Libertarian Future

Ever wanted to be in on a secret conference of finger-tapping, chuckling supervillains out to destroy the world and then escape to their superscience floating lair? Well, that's not exactly what the Seasteading Institute is about, despite this rather laughable take on them from Alternet. (The laughs get a little strained as you see the various people in the comments thread openly calling for the murder of the libertarian thinkers and funders behind the Seasteading idea.)

But if you want to experience what I wrote about both in this July 2009 Reason magazine feature and this October 2009 Reason Online travelogue, the beginning stages of a libertarian experiment in building floating stateless cities, you might want to think about coming to this year's second annual Ephemerisle Festival, happening July 22-25. (Yes, dammit, in conflict with ComicCon!)

The first one was great fun, and I expect the second one to be as well. Be prepared to learn how to build floating platforms, to get wet, and to be ready for lots of heady political talk, or to completely eschew any heady political talk if that's how you prefer to roll, or float.

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  • ||

    That comment thread should be linked to in any definition of "useful idiots", as well as any definition of "unbelievably stupid" and "blitheringly retarded".

  • ||

    The Really Creepy People Behind the Libertarian-Inspired Billionaire Sea Castles The stinking rich are planning billion-dollar luxury liners that keep the land-based Americans they've plundered at a safe distance. "What happens when Americans plunder America and leave it broken, destitute and seething mad?"

    Jesus H. Christ, that friggin' craptastic writing! One can only imagine the twisted drone who spawned it.

  • Suki||

    I thought this was another pitch for the cruise.

  • ||

    Fool us once...

  • Tim||

    http://www.uselessmoviequotes......anwalk.wav

  • ||

    I can't hear it.

  • Warty||

    Vladimira Lenina 1 week ago in reply to Ishmael1
    jamesscaminaciiiiphd and 19 more liked this
    I had the exact same reaction when reading this. All of them at the same place at the same time. Good!

    These people can't possibly be useful to anyone, Epi.

  • ||

    They're useful to Obama.

  • ||

    Ever wanted to be in on a secret conference of a secret conference of finger-tapping, chuckling supervillains out to destroy the world

    Why no, I've never had any desire to go to Davos. Thanks for asking, though.

  • ||

    I thought the Libertarianati ran everything.

  • ||

    Davos, Burning Man, compare and contrast and then ask who really has the power and wealth in the world, liberals or libertarians?

  • Fatty Bolger||

    The sea is a harsh mistress.

  • ||

    As God as my witness, I thought Libertarians could float.

  • Ragin Cajun||

    We all float down here.

  • Peasant||

    So...they're witches?

  • Astrid||

    No they're made of wood so they're ducks.

  • Disgruntled Husband||

    My harsh mistress is as big as the sea.

  • Sudden||

    I just some of the comments.... whatever happened to the leftist commitments to non-violence? Seems to be an angry and violent bunch over there.

  • Sudden||

    I just *read* some of the comments....

  • Warty||

    Do you really think it ever existed?

  • Josef Stalin||

    whatever happened to the leftist commitments to non-violence?

    I have no idea what you are talking about.

  • ||

    Leftist commitment to nonviolence? Filed under false consciousness and bourgeois democracy.

  • ||

    Damn, that kid is fast. Trotsky, look out!

  • Josef Stalin||

    Good thing you're already dead, Vlad. Not that I don't have the authority to dig you up, behead you and rape your neck hole. So behave yourself!

  • MattXIV||

    They're obivously Right Wing Tea Partiers with all that eliminationist rhetoric.

  • Marusia||

    Experience what you wrote? That sounds seriously demented.

  • whackystuff||

    The commentators on the alternet article are exactly the sort that a seasteader is seeking to divorce themselves from, rather funny actually.

  • Zeb||

    Wow. The article was the stupidest thing I had ever read. Then I read some of the comments. People should be murdered because they spend their own money, earned in honest business, on a dwelling of their choosing?

  • Warty||

    No, no, they plundered us by drawing a salary. Or something.

  • ||

    Alterman is pretty much the template upon which new leftist authoritarian douchbag journalists (think Yglesias and Klein) are based. He is just awful. So it is unsurprising his readers are as well.

  • ||

    If you're talking about Eric Alterman, I don't think he has anything to do with AlterNet. His blog is Altercation.

  • ||

    Ah. my mistake.

  • ||

    I love how they blame libertarians for the "illegal wars in Afghanistan and Iraq". The comentators are truly unhinged. And most of the comments advocate the summary execution of everyone involved. What is funny is that Alterman uses the term "creepy" in his headline, yet most of his readers advocate mass murder. Talk about projection.

  • Warty||

    "I'm going to live on a ship so that I can be left alone."

    "Holy fucking shit! How fucking creepy! KILL HIM!"

  • ||

    And don't forget environmentalists who start off the grid communes are A OK. But some "rich people" want to drop out and they need to be killed. In the end, these people just want to kill everyone. They really have sick minds.

  • ||

    It's more like "holy fucking shit, he wants to get away from the control and taxation of the collective! KILL HIM!"

    It amazes me how much it bothers certain people when you just want to get away from them, or out from under their thumb. It enrages them. It's probably based on deep insecurity and seeing it as some kind of rejection--which it absolutely is, motherfuckers.

  • ||

    Complete power over others--the grail of leftwing politics.

  • ||

    It's not just complete control; it's not letting anyone escape from that control. Because they know best and it's for your own good.

    These people have no idea how disgusting they are, either.

  • ||

    Hubris and lust for power. What a great combination.

    I have to say, I totally overestimated the quality of the motivations of the American left. I thought they were essentially capitalists with a misguided desire to use the government to undo certain inequities. But that's clearly not the case. It's about power over others and compelling people to behave in certain ways. Whether their ends are correct, moral, justifiable, or even of any utility. . .those are irrelevancies.

  • ||

    they are just the leftover puritans. They are, four hundred years on, still trying to build the city on the hill. They are just doing it with the state rather than with God.

  • ||

    Everything they believe in is failing around them. They need scapegoats.

  • Virginia||

    rejection

    Opting out is not an option when your money is required to fund their bureaucracy and handouts.

  • ||

    +1

  • Astrid||

    Yeah, that pretty much nails it.

  • Chairman Mao||

    "People should be murdered because they spend their own money, earned in honest business, on a dwelling of their choosing?"

    And your problem is?

  • cynical||

    Dude, do you think they're just going to let slaves stroll off the plantation? Either they're going to drag you back in chains, or they're going to make you an example of what happens to those that try to escape.

  • Zeb||

    I wish these people would decide whether libertarians are irrelevant fringe weirdos, or billionaire oligarchs running the world.

  • These People||

    Both - that is why they must be eliminated

  • ¢||

    To be fair, there are almost 300 comments there, and only about 300 of them are even "objectively pro-" murdering everybody on the dorkboat.

  • Tim||

    Fair.

  • ||

    The violent outbursts remind me of a typical Radley Balko thread here.
    Just sayin'.

  • ||

    Your comment reminds me of a Michael Bay movie; probably Transformers level stupid. Just sayin'.

  • ||

    Interesting, coming from a fellow who advocates murdering cops. But what-eveeeer.

  • ||

    If you can find any comment by me that advocates murdering cops, let's see it, you disingenuous little shit. I've decided that this new comment is now Transformers 2 level stupid. Keep climbing that ladder! Eventually you might make it to Pearl Harbor.

  • Palpatine||

    Good! I can feel your hate surging forward. Now Destroy him and your journey to the dark side will be complete.

  • ||

    What kind of name is Palpatine, anyway? I see that name, and I often think "palpating", which means to examine by touch.

    As always, what, exactly, was Lucas thinking?

  • Palpatine||

    (Aboard the Libertarian super ship)

    Princess Liberal: No! Alderaan is peaceful! We have no weapons, you can't possibly...
    Governor Tarkin: [impatiently] You would prefer another target, a military target? Then name the system! I grow tired of asking this so it will be the last time: *Where* is the rebel base?
    Princess Liberal: ...France. They're in France.
    Governor Tarkin: There. You see, Lord Vader, she can be reasonable. Continue with the operation; you may fire when ready.
    Princess Liberal: WHAT?
    Governor Tarkin: You're far too trusting. France is far too remote to make an effective demonstration - but don't worry; we will deal with your collectivist friends soon enough.

  • ||

    We're more like the Ewoks. Without the deus ex machina.

  • Tim||

    I don't know, the Ewoks could manage to cooperate with each other...

  • ||

    Sandpeople?

  • Tim||

    Yeah, but better shots

  • Paul||

    I don't know, the Ewoks could manage to cooperate with each other...

    Libertarians, we're all just a bunch of Han Solos.

  • Paul||

    With all due respect, Palpate, you've got it backwards. That's the Federal Government demanding to know where the floating libertarian base is.

    Remember, we libertarians make up .002% of the electorate. We're the rebels. Everyone else? The Empire.

  • ||

    Palpating. Just one letter has to be changed that way.

    I love how we're the new evil empire. Is that totally insane? It's like blaming the Jews for Germany's surrender in WWI. Actually, it's like blaming them for Germany's surrender in WWII.

  • Huh||

    I thought Hitler did blame the Jews for Germany's surrender in WWI

  • ||

    And how would you describe Herr Hitler's mental state at the time? Sane or ______?

  • Paul||

    And how would you describe Herr Hitler's mental state at the time? Sane or _Helen Thomas_?

    Answered.

  • ||

    I wonder if she wants them to go to Madagascar. That was one of the Nazis earlier choices.

  • ||

    Nazis'.

  • Paul||

    Nazis's'sss..s-s;s

  • Zeb||

    While some of us might get some pleasure from seeing a violent cop get a taste of his own medicine, very rarely, if at all, does anyone openly advocate unprovoked murder of police here. Saying that they might meet some armed resistance if they broke into my house in the middle of the night is not the same thing at all.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Giant balls of hot gas have a hard time grasping such subtleties.

  • ||

    After an exhaustive 30-minute search, two more beers and a trip to the bathroom, this post comes closest to exemplifying the H&R commentariat's general opinion of law enforcement professionals (the "pigs"). So sorry to lump Episiarch in with this particular miscreant:

    raging hard on of vengeance|5.5.10 @ 8:51AM|#

    Each one of these cops should* be killed, along with their superiors. They all deserve* to die violent deaths.

    This is the kind of shit that is eventually going to trigger an actual war on drugs. With, you know, people shooting back and assassinating cops, and with an indifferent public that can't tell who the bad guys are. Like Mexico.

    (* in a metaphysical "should" and "deserve" way, not an "i'm trying to incite way". But just barely.)

    The sun regrets the errors.

  • Fluffy||

    That appears to be directed at the particular officers in the story, and not LEO's in general.

  • ||

    Who cares what it says, the author is the Raging Hard On of Justice.

    Handlewin.

  • kinnath||

    You have not proven your point. The vast majority of the readership of H&R posts little or not at all. Absence of posts supporting, or at least tolerating, the police force is not proof that those sentiments do not exist.

  • ||

    I said "the H&R commentariat", not the general readership. The commentariat here is overwhelmingly anti-cop.

  • kinnath||

    I don't think you have even proven that. I post here regularly, for years, but rarely post direct comments on the police. So searching is going to find my opinion.

  • ||

    As someone who has been around since '03, I can attest to the rabidly anti-cop outbursts that appear whenever Radley posts another of his (strangely discontinued "Another Isolated Incident") cop-outrage stories. It shouldn't take you long to find many examples of emotional, irrational, "fuck-the-pigs" comments.

  • kinnath||

    No doubt. There are a handful of extremely vocal "shoot the fuckers" poster here. But I believe you are wrong to extrapolate that to the general commentariate here.

  • Spoonman.||

    I'm anti-cop, but I don't support killing them.

  • ||

    ☼,a lot here think that heroin should be sold in vending machines, so accusing us of being anti-cop isn't really the worst you could throw at us.

    Why everyone is so defensive about it is a mystery to me though.

  • skr||

    lol

  • Warty||

    Who the fuck are you, you unpronounceable little shit? I'd accuse you of being Dan T., but you seem to be even stupider. Fuck off and choke yourself, moron.

  • ||

    Damn kinnath, does that means that more people are reading my insane/asinine comments than the 25 people who post here?

    That is fucking scary.

  • kinnath||

    You'd have to get the numbers from H&R, but yeah I assume that most readers check in once or twice a day. Most people can't kill as much time at work on the web as some of us seem to do.

  • ||

    I work nights and don't have a lot of time during the day to do anything useful, so I comment here.

    Just wanted to see if the skull & crossbones worked.

  • ||

    You're a star, capitol l. Same as me, tho' my handle says I'm a sun. Same thing! Thanks, Carl Sagan!

  • ||

    Anyway, I'm as libertarian as they come. Crack bags in vending machines? Sex with poodles? Polygamy? Freedom of association? The 9th Amendment? Sure thing. But all cops are not all-bad. And that was my point. I think. It was so long ago.

  • ||

    Starscream, you are not alone in your assessment of the Balko cult and its odd and defensive loathing of cops.

  • Steve Nash Equilibrium||

    Yes, I can see how a story about some people want to go live somewhere where they will be left alone would illicit the same type of responses as an innocent person being shot, beaten up, and/or harassed by the police. The circumstances are so similar after all.

  • Steve Nash Equilibrium||

    elicit even

  • Colin||

    AlterNet also offered Helen Thomas a job upon release of that little video.

  • ||

    Those comments are an orgy of stupid unmatched since... this morning. OMG Sweden/socialism/free money for your babies!

    These retards crow about loving socialism with a strange kind of false bravado that seems to mask, what? Shame? I can't quite place it, but it's unseemly.

  • Astrid||

    Yeah, I can't really put it in words, but there's something very off about it all.

  • Fluffy||

    Actually, if the Alternet commenters are representative of the reaction any seasteading on even a modest scale would receive if the collective's tax receipts started to be threatened, "a secret conference of finger-tapping, chuckling supervillains out to destroy the world and then escape" starts to look like a pretty good idea.

    What would be harder, and take a higher level of investment? Starting all these seasteading things and then defending them when the US decides all its laws apply everywhere in the world [the way they typically do now for internet gambling and the like] or building a doomsday weapon to hold over the head of the world like a Sword of Damocles?

    It's a tough call.

  • Fluffy||

    I wonder if Peikoff would sue me if I fictionalized that scenario.

  • Cabeza de Vaca||

    This is what I tell libertarians, whenever they start talking about building libertopia. The Statists of this world will never allow it. They have an intense hatred toward people who want to live in freedom. If they didn't have a legitamit reason to destroy you, they would invent one.

  • ||

    The Statists of this world will never allow it. They have an intense hatred toward people who want to live in freedom.

    Just watch the Obama Administration's official cable news channel, MSNBC, for validation of your premise.

  • ||

    That is why we have guns. And we have to do more then just own them, yes, occasionaly, we have to use them.
    Understand?

  • ||

    Err, Fluffy, I think that defending the seasteadings from broke and desperate totalitarian regimes would require a doomsday weapon to hold over the head of the world. So its not really either/or.

  • Fluffy||

    Yeah, you really got me there.

    The problem is that I don't think anyone told the Seasteading Institute people that.

  • Naomi Most||

    We're aware. Have you read Snow Crash?

  • Cabeza de Vaca||

    Actually, I don't think even a doomsday machine would work.
    I really think that the U.N. or some other very powerful government would call your bluff. They would demonize libertopia, & claim moral authority in attacking you. All the sheeple would believe that they were in the right destroying you.Would the citizens of libertopia want to really set it off? Would the whole world deserve to die if one country attacked you?

  • ||

    Would the citizens of libertopia want to really set it off? Would the whole world deserve to die if one country attacked you?

    Yes.

    Actually, though, what you would need wouldn't be some fictional world-ending doomsday machine, just a double handful of strategic nukes. That way, you could just nuke whoever attacked you.

    WHich I would do in a heartbeat.

  • ||

    The problem is that you would eventually want to get off the boat. And then they would have you. What we really need is another planet to move to. And that is not happening in our lifetimes. The ending of the frontier really sucks. There is nowhere to run away to anymore.

  • I||

    vote doomsday weapon. This is why if I was Iran the nukes are full speed ahead.

  • Paul||

    The laughs get a little strained as you see the various people in the comments thread openly calling for the murder of the libertarian thinkers and funders behind the Seasteading idea

    The New York Times' editorial board spoofing the threads again?

  • Michael||

    Yikes...

    Bull Slam [Moderator] 1 week ago

    Great exposé! It scarcely needs saying that none of them will be missed. In fact such a degenerate bunch will probably end up destroying each other; It'd take about 2 years to do that. Unless pirates board them first and sink them, oh, most likely in the first month or so at sea. People who make big messes like these guys, they never seem to get around to cleaning up their act. Like my therapist used to say, where ever you go--- there you are!

    I'd trawl

  • Michael||

    some more but I'm afraid it might drive me to the brink.

  • ||

    I don't think that guy's therapy was very successful.

  • Astrid||

    Give the therapist some credit, John. I mean, look at what he had to work with.

  • ||

    Judging from his use of the past tense, it sounds like his therapist gave up.

  • MattXIV||

    And I always figured seasteading would be like Burning Man with even less convenient access to potable water.

  • ||

    Dammit! Where is *my* sea castle. All I got were a Mises Institute T-shirt, a bunch of Bergland campaign books, and a pallet of Restoring the American Dream.

    WHERE IS MY SEA CASTLE!!??

  • Naomi Most||

    HERE'S YOUR DAMN SEA CASTLE!

    http://bit.ly/c59VZm

  • ||

    The laughs get a little strained as you see the various people in the comments thread openly calling for the murder of the libertarian thinkers and funders behind the Seasteading idea.

    Well it is becoming pretty obvious that any new nations on the ocean will need a pretty robust military. I suggest that the next Ephemerisle Festival should require everyone to bring a gun.

  • skr||

    Does it have to be a gun or just a weapon. A high powered water canon would be pretty useful and entertaining. A bunch of 45's not so much.

    And think of the hilarity of running around with cutlasses.

  • ||

    Does it have to be a gun or just a weapon. A high powered water canon would be pretty useful and entertaining. A bunch of 45's not so much.

    For the festival?

    no i am just thinking you have to prove you have a gun (or some sort of viable weapon) and then probably just leave it in your car. It would mostly be a symbolic gesture for the participants to recognize that any serious attempt at seasteading will require self protection from the violence of people and governments who oppose such an attempt.

  • دردشة||

    thanks

  • Nike Dunk Low||

    thanks

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