21 C
Sombor
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
Home Blog

Statement on the fire aboard the Liberland Flagship Freedom

0

The fire on the Liberland flagship Freedom intended for the settlement of Liberland is the largest misfortune in the short history of this nation. Luckily, no one was injured and the ship was not yet outfitted with expensive technology as planned.

The overall damage is estimated at more than 10 Bitcoins (BTC). The fire aboard the Freedom comes during the time of significant loss of our personal and economic freedoms during the global coronavirus crisis, which is an alarm for all liberty-loving people.

We are deeply grateful to the men and women of Apatin who risked their lives to save the ship. My special thanks goes to the Apatin firemen as well as the divers. We will ensure they are recognized for their brave actions. So far, we do not believe that the fire broke out spontaneously or was lit on purpose. We are awaiting the results of the investigation to confirm the details.

This event will not deter us from making further investments in this region that has become our beloved home or from setting the stage for the proper settlement of Liberland in the coming years. We have started a crowdfunding campaign to restore and upgrade the whole project so that people coming to Apatin and to visit Liberland will have a comfortable place to stay on Liberland property.

President Vít Jedlička

Liberland

to donate please go here https://liberland.org/en/donate

NFTs – the new drug for the digital classes

0

NFTs, or Non Fungible Tokens, just might be the next gateway drug into all things crypto. NFTs address the critical issue of a digital asset being unique – ensuring provenance and ownership while removing the problem of counterfeits. In essence, NFTs are used to create verifiable digital assets.

The term NFT first broke into crypto consciousness when the game CryptoKitties went viral and almost broke the Ethereum network back in 2018. However, while the hype surrounding the CryptoKitties prevailed for several months and many people invested big money in creating specific trading platforms, the secondary market never took off and the hype and the kitties largely disappeared from sight.

William E. Quigley, co-founder of WAX, the leading NFT blockchain platform, said even at the height of the feline virality less than a dollar a day in secondary trading volume was present. The time had not yet come. The CryptoKitties phenomenon lay in the creation and not the trading which pointed to a lack of community.

WAX has now embarked on a 2020 trail blazing move to finally put NFTs on the radar and not just for crypto audiences; in fact opening the door to non-crypto communities is their secret sauce.

NTFs best use-case examples are for digital art and collectables – where provenance and uniqueness are vital – and where communities are active. And this is where WAX directed their spotlight.

Back in May, WAX partnered with The Topps Company, an American company best known for its sports and non-sports trading cards. It holds a dominant position in the market and is the only baseball card manufacturer with a contract with Major League Baseball.

Back in 1985, it produced the Garbage Pail Kids cards with legendary underground cartoonists using gross-out humour and a subversive twist. The collections growing popularity soon caused them to be banned in school playgrounds, thereby ensuring their success. 35 years later, WAX and Topps took the project online.

It was an unmitigated success. In just over 24 hours 110,000 digital trading cards in 12,000 packs were sold out. Within a few days many were selling their cards on secondary markets such as eBay for thousands of dollars.

Then in July, the team launched another series of products this time based on Netflix’s extraordinary documentary series The Tiger King. Topps ‘spoofed’ (their words not mine) the over-the-top documentary series in a limited GPK goes Exotic collection that went to three physical print runs. On July 16th it went online and into NFT history as the biggest NFT sale to date. In just 67 minutes the entire set of 7,000 mega packs and 13,020 standard packs sold out totally more than $200,000.

What is even more exciting is the secondary market of both sets of NFT is running at a faction of x10 the original sales.

Evan Vandenberg, Director of Business Development at WAX says they are on a learning curve and points to the easy-to-use WAX wallet as one key element in the popularity amongst a non-crypto audience. “I get that when you are talking about large sums of money then having control using your private keys is important. But if you want to buy something or play games then having a wallet that can be created using your social profile makes sense.  It’s a much faster and easier option and it has been responsible for the huge onboarding of this traditional collectable card community.”

The healthy secondary market on WAX is very exciting to Evan. He tells me, that as we have been speaking, some 382 transactions have been clocked up on the WAX marketplace. “I could watch this all day,” he says.

The age demographic of the collectors is also interesting.

“They are older than we first thought – people in their 30s, 40s and 50s,” explains Evan. “This is probably as a result of the age of the original cards but points to an older demographic coping with NFTs and cryptocurrency.  It just goes to show that interest can drive action.”

For Evan and WAX the programme is only just beginning and like buses coming together there are a number of huge announcements coming down the tracks.

“Next up we are working with celebrity actor William Shatner who is digitizing personal memorabilia and creating a unique range of collectables. Some of the content is new and unseen and when people buy rare cards he is going to donate physically signed images and art work.”

I note that this is a fabulous opportunity for a well-known, indeed well-loved actor, to be able to benefit from their personal brand while still alive rather than in a posthumous sale, but Even corrects me. William Shatner is a big crypto fan and is much more interested in the process than the financial rewards.

“He has been a delight to work with – he has been interested in crypto from the getgo unlike some of the celebrities that endorsed ICOs back in the crazy 2017s. We are very proud that he has agreed to join the WAX Advisory Council. He is helping us promote the NFTs and is very active on social media – not bad for a man of 89.”

After Shatner’s collectables, then comes CapCom’s StreetFighter, Blockchain Heroes and Kogs. StreetFighter already has some scintillating artwork and they are looking at how to incorporate a game element to the NFTs.  Blockchain Heroes are developed by popular pod-casting duo Joel Comm and Travis Wright of Bad Crypto fame and are based on real influencers in the blockchain space (William Quigley is one), while Kogs derives its origin from the school yard game Pogs.

As with all popular and profitable platforms, the scammers are already out trying to prize loot from naïve collectors.

“It’s like everything – you have to make sure you are buying the real McCoy – same as everything else you can buy online. For example, if you look at the asset itself check and see in the GPK example that the Topps name is on the card – and that it is spelt correctly with two ‘p’s. We’re looking to come up with really user-friendly ways to reference check the cards or produce red flags to warn the community if something might be wrong.”

As Even says – it’s a learning curve, a very fast learning curve. “And with COVID going online makes even more sense,” he adds.

First published on Voice

Increasing Freedom and Prosperity by means of Private Cities

0

by Patrik Schumacher, London 2020, for Liberland Press

‘Honduras Prospera’ is a unique initative translating the ideas Titus Gebel formulated in his book on ‘Free Private Cities’.  Prospera is just getting off the ground. So far it is only a small seed of what is to come. The ambition is to create the Hong Kong of Central America, on the island of Roatan, Honduras.  The aim is to create largely autonomous free market enclave with its own jurisdiction and court system within the uniquely liberal framework of the ZEDE programme (Zone for Employment and Economic Development) established by parliamentary action in Honduras. The programme invites private entities to establish, regulate and run free enterprise zones anywhere in Honduras. This is not yet a fully autonomous micro-nation as Liberland aspires to become, as ultimate sovereignty is maintained by the host country Honduras. However, the degree of autonomy granted reaches far beyond what is usually granted for special economic zones.

The inspiration for the ZEDE programme came from Paul Romer’s idea and initiative to create so called ‘Charter Cities’ as a development tool for underdeveloped regions. Paul Romer is no Libertarian, as is evident by the fact that he was chief economist and senior vice president of the World Bank (from 2016 to 2018). Romer originated so called endogenous growth theory in the 1990s (which earned him the Nobel prize in economics in 2018). Endogenous growth theory emphasizes innovation as factor of economic growth. While this seems obvious and nearly tautological, Romer’s achievement was to include investment in knowledge production, i.e. education, science and R&D into mathematical growth models that had formerly treated technological advances as exogenous. Romer emphasized the non-rivalry of knowledge, i.e. the fact that knowledge resources can be used simultaneously by all without mutual interference or resource depletion. There is a mutual enhancement of knowledge uses, i.e. strong positive spill-over effects. Romer posits the importance of ideas and of so called meta-ideas for growth. A meta-idea is “a recipe for social interaction that encourages the production and transmission of ideas” and he calls cities, markets and science the three big meta-ideas. The 19th century idea of a new type of technologically and practically oriented university (like MIT) was another meta-idea. The idea of Charter Cities can also be classified as a meta-idea in this sense.

“One of the biggest meta-ideas of modern life is to let people live together in dense urban agglomerations. A second is to allow market forces to guide most of the detailed decisions these people make about how they interact with each other. Together, the city and the market let large groups of people cooperate by discovering new ideas, sharing them, and learning from each other.” Paul Romer, The Deep Structure of Economic Growth

Romer launched the idea of Charter Cities in a 2009 TED talk. It was primarily targeted at developing countries where the institutional prerequisites for growth  – reliable government, property security, the rule of all  – are lacking and preventing the take-off of development.  In 2010 Romer published a paper with the title ‘Technologies, Rules, and Progress: The Case for Charter Cities’. He published under the auspices of the Center for Global Development, a prominent Washington think tank for developmental policy, dedicated to reducing global poverty and inequality:

“In this century, new technologies can raise living standards at the fastest rate in human history. … It will happen only if our rules keep up with our technologies and the proliferating web of human interactions that these technologies make possible. The constraint we will face will come from neither scarce resources nor limited technological opportunities; if we falter, it will be because of our limited capacity for discovering and implementing new rules.”

While this paragraph is calling for political innovation in the face of technological transformations, most of the article has a more conservative outlook, focusing on copying established Western rule sets in Africa:

“If technologies are ideas about how to arrange physical objects, rules are ideas about how to structure interactions among people. Like technologies, rules can be shared and copied. … Developing countries pursue catch-up growth by copying technologies. … What types of mechanisms will allow developing countries to copy the rules that work well in the rest of the world?”

Copying rules is a rather conservative stance, perhaps safe and appropriate for catch-up development. Perhaps this is also what Honduras was expecting.

But with Prospera they are getting much more than what they have bargained for. A radically new type of polity, not a mere copy of current 1st world standards.

Harvard educated Honduran lawyer and presidential adviser Octavio Sanchez brought Romer and his idea to Honduras and a uniquely radical legal framework for autonomous economic zones was soon legislated in 2011. Romer served as chair of a “transparency committee” in connection with the ZEDE programme until 2012.

The most basic advantage of Titus Gebel’s Free Private City concept is that citizenship is based on voluntary, and in this sense “free”, participation.  It is not based on a political revolution where one group of political actors, whether minority or majority, is imposing the new system on a given population. Instead a Free Private City Corporation, like Prospera, appears on the scene, on the market for governance provision, with a competitive service offering focusing on security of life, liberty and property.  This is an invitation to join the city as a citizen, based on a real social contract specifying the terms of engagement between the prospective citizen and the governance provider. The offer includes a rule of law based on a newly packaged bundle of well-corroborated common law procedures, rules and rulings. More specifically it is implementing Ulex, an open source legal system, offered by legal scholar Tom W.Bell’s Institute for Competitive Governance (that counts Titus Gebel amongst its advisers). Further, Prospera has build up its own judiciary by inviting eminent judges, including former supreme court judges. The social contract itself will be adjudicated by an independent international arbitrator. The governance provider and citizen-client thus, unlike in all known states, stand on a truly equal footing with respect to dispute resolution.

This freedom of social or political contracting is mutual, i.e. both parties, prospective citizen and city, have to agree to the trade, as is always the case in proper markets. This, however, also implies that there is no general right to join, and therefore probably no free, unrestricted immigration. This is not only so because a governance services fee will be levied which not everybody might be able to afford, but the city might be selective and impose requirements with respect to language, skills, minimum capital endowment etc. In this sense a free private city might be compared with a club. Its business model might be premised on a certain vision of a successful society and the attempt might be made to curate the society accordingly. This might be compared with certain business park projects trying to curate a certain synergetic cluster of tenants, trying to brand the development with respect to a certain industry, i.e. trying to create a financial centre, or a new media district etc. Such attempts at selectivity might falter and the developer might have to become more indiscriminate, i.e. less selective, due to a lack of uptake. This might easily happen to a city that initially had a very strong, restrictive curatorial agenda. Early and intensive marketing should be key for an ambitious curation to succeed. A critical mass of tenants would have to be assembled is a short period of time. (Here a visually eloquent urban and architectural design might be a crucial component.)

We can probably presume that some minimal degree of selectiveness might have to be maintained, over and above the price mechanism that could always respond to overflowing demand by increasing the fees for newcomers. (The city might want to avoid becoming a sanctuary for drug lords.) While the main absorption and growth regulating mechanism of successful cities will be the price mechanism, either via land prices and rents, or via fees or taxes, some further control over immigration will properly be maintained. Therefore, a free private city would not add to the freedom of those who would not be eligible to join. However, there are reasons to believe that if the idea of free private cities takes off, there will probably be at least some cities with initially very liberal immigration policies. Since there will be many cities without existing populations that would want to be protected from immigrant competition, and because most of these cities, as start-up for-profit enterprises, will neither be willing, nor able to offer any welfare provisions or guarantees, immigration could be very much more liberal than most current states. (Instead insurance offers as well as mutual aid societies could and would deliver social security on the basis of voluntary participation. Some cities, Prospera included, might make insurance with a reputed life insurer or participation in a mutual aid society a condition of residency.) If there are no severe spatial constraints, it would make economic sense for the city operator to either expand its territory or else absorb an increasing population by means of densifying the build-up of the city. This would probably be in the interest of the operator, and probably also in the interest of private landowners, and employers too.  The presumption here is that the operator will, in its contract with its citizens, reserve its immigration authority.

As always, best protection against rising prices due to demand pressure will the additional competitive supply. This supply should be forthcoming as long as states do not continue to block the conversion of agricultural into urban land or the utilization of their uninhabited land.

A proper free competitive market in governance provision, as envisioned here, presupposes that there are many providers in the market, or at least a menu of many different cities to choose from, even if this market ends up being dominated by a handful of big corporations franchising their models like hotel chains around the world. The smaller the territorial units, the easier it will be for citizens to avoid lock-in, and to exercise their market choice and move to a different jurisdiction. This vision of a rich choice menu of jurisdictions, small and perhaps differentially curated or specialized, within relative proximity, stands in stark contrast with the USA as huge political monolith that locks in most of its citizens from cradle to grave. The majority of US citizens do not even hold a passport, let alone consider which government they should live under to be a matter of individual market choice. In addition, and this is mostly relevant to high performers, exit from the US is costly. The relinquishment of US citizenship is penalized with a imposition of a hefty Exit Tax.

The switching between governance regimes might further be eased due to the possibility of decoupling jurisdictions at least partially from territorial boundaries.  The ZEDE framework allows for non-contiguous communities and new businesses from anywhere in Honduras to opt into the Prospera jurisdiction. In general business law does not need to be tied to a territory and switching between providers should be as easy as switching insurance providers. Tom Bell’s Ulex offering was initially developed for non-territorial governance and dispute resolution, primarily targeted at the crypto-space, i.e. for distributed protocols like Etherium, Tesoz, EOS and Dash as an alternative to governance via hard forks.

Rules and laws concerning spatial co-location, physical property and physical interactions remain tied to territory. However, rules and laws might be varied, street by street, or even block by block, and much might be devolved to individual condominiums or owners of individual establishments. The risk of this adaptive diversity becoming disorienting will probably be avoided via a spontaneous self-regulation and balancing of divergent and convergent tendencies, via the spontaneous aggregation of individual decisions making this trade-off locally.

Let us presume that current states bent to a future popular demand for allowing the secession of charter cities, just as governments are now pressured to allow for charter schools to compete with state schooling. Then, once the idea of private cities takes off, we can assume that initially as many forms of cities or polities would form as there are ideologies, secular or religious. What guarantees that all or even most of these private cities will be free cities in the libertarian sense of offering a laissez faire regime based on individual liberty, private property and far reaching economic freedoms, giving as much scope as possible to freedom of contract?

Libertarians would agitate for laissez faire and a socially liberal regime but would not want to see any restrictive impositions coming from an overarching authority. The ideal of libertarianism ultimately presumes the absence of any such overarching authority. Instead the overall disciplining and ordering of the whole field of interacting private cities or polities is expected to be delivered by the competitive market process via the profit-and-loss system, and guided by a parallel discourse involving the social sciences as well as public proselytizing efforts. An informed critical discourse will discourage and discredit questionable or unviable private city concepts in advance, so that many projects that are likely to fail will never get off the ground. Others might go ahead undeterred only to be weeded out by the market process. Discourse will also be a crucial facilitator in the generation of new projects. Together discourses and markets will deliver the rational selection process that is required in any progressive evolutionary process.

In a previous paper (and my contribution to the 2nd Liberland conference) entitled ‘Corporate Governance Structures as Models for Micro-nation Constitutions’, I distinguished various forms of corporate ownership, including various types of cooperatives, that might enter the market of competing private cities. Now, we might further extend what might be possible, for instance monarchies, perhaps ethnically based, even openly discriminatory polities, or illiberal theocracies using draconian forms of social control, perhaps also communist communes. Whether such communes would be tolerated as districts or enclaves within a private city would be up to the operator to decide. Titus Gebel, in the recent Liberland conference on Free Private Cities explicitly welcomed that communist communes to form within the bounds of Prospera, while expressing historically based doubt about the longevity of such communes beyond the initial generation of enthusiasts.

Why would libertarians wish and call for a world of private cities, a world where all this is possible and might come to pass? Well, freedom of voluntary association, including the right to discriminate concerning participation, is a core tenet of libertarianism. If people freely chose to segregate or to subject themselves to a draconian religious regime, then we might warn and proselytize against this but would at the same time oppose any coercive measures or violent intervention trying to prevent or break up such associations. Can we really know in advance whether these forms are always detrimental for all? The crowd will show the way via voting with their feet. Discourses are important in trying to anticipate and guide, but the final selection comes via market action on the ground, sometimes only after discursive guidance was ignored, or worse after guidance turned out to be misguided.

Honduras Prospera_Zaha Hadid Architects

While the very conception of free private, for-profit polity emerged, naturally and congenially, from within libertarian political discourse, and could probably not have emerged from within socialist or conservative political discourses, there is indeed nothing that stands in the way of the founding of socialist or conservative private cities, once this theoretical possibility has become a real opportunity for entrepreneurial initiative, as it has been in Honduras. Indeed, there have been historical examples of socialist communities that started on the basis of privately funded initiatives. The fact that these ventures failed, as well as why and how they failed, is material historical evidence that should alleviate the worry of preparing the turf on which for regressive regimes might flourish.

The question which of these polities should be preferred is, according to this paper, not a moral question, neither a question of personal preference, but a question of which constitutional form will be most conducive to the development of the forces of production and thus economic growth leading to ever higher levels of prosperity. So far all migrations followed a prosperity gradient.

Libertarianism’s essential message here is not moral but economic, it is an historically located socio-economic hypothesis. The essential message here is not a moral dictum like “the principle of self-ownership and respect for private property is sacrosanct” but a theoretical thesis about the current historical conditions of prosperity, namely that increasing degrees of freedom for individual autonomy, free contracting and free exchange in markets, as well as unconstrained freedom of speech, communication and discourse, are advantageous for general prosperity. This thesis then also translates into a prediction, which at the same time becomes advice for would be governance entrepreneurs, namely that those “free” polities that are based on libertarian principles will economically out-compete both its conservative-traditionalist and its socialist-interventionist competitors, at least with respect to those private communities that attempt to function as production centres, and that means, increasingly, as creative knowledge economy hubs. Traditionalist or socialist entities might survive as retirement communities.

Libertarians should therefore be relaxed about these other possible private cities because we can presume that even the initial popularity of such regimes will be limited and since we are convinced that the prosperity potential of such regimes is minimal, they will soon shrink and disappear rather than proliferate. There is plenty of evidence that prosperity, material freedom, the general availability of a prosperous standard of living is an irresistible attractor, even for many or most at the same time still caught up in a deeply religious or otherwise culturally backward ideology. The advantages of material affluence are obvious enough for everyone. This affluence is based on productivity levels and competitive productivity gains that will best be attained by the laissez faire regimes preferred and advocated by libertarians. Libertarians are convinced that the competitive market process in the market for living and working together will select and proliferate free private cities. The concept of free private cities does not only make sense for us as libertarian political activists, fueling our missionary zeal to create a better world for all, but it also makes eminent business sense for entrepreneurs and investors in the market for living together.

The relative marginality and economic desperation of a country like Honduras made breaking through the usual political barriers here more likely, and the chances for success are great due to the fact that there are many low hanging fruits of development in Honduras that allow for rapid catch up growth (as was seen in Asia in recent decades). This implies that Prospera’s economic success is indeed likely. Such catch-up growth would be a signal to the developing world but with respect to world political discourse mere catch-up growth will probably not be perceived as something earth shaking that would be seen as challenging the political status quo in the central, most advanced arenas of the world. A similar experiment in the heart of Europe that would have the chance to break the stagnation at the frontier of productivity development would, in contrast, immediately irradiate the collective imaginary within the advanced societies, and become a torch leading the way forward for a long overdue political revolution. This political revolution is necessary to unleash the politically enchained potentials for accelerated progress that the AI revolution promises.

What is the Liberland Aid Foundation and how to contribute?

0

By Nicholas Rodriguez

March, 2020

In response to the devastation sustained by Caribbean island nations during the 2016-2017 Atlantic hurricane seasons Liberlanders began planning how to provide humanitarian assistance to other countries. Bogie Wozniak, Dave Molineaux, Rabbi Altman, Father Philippe Charles, and Steven Melnik started diplomatic negotiations and fundraising efforts for the Caribbean nation of Haiti.

In Feb 2019 Nicholas Rodriguez and a team of Liberlanders from the United States came together and founded the charitable organization that is now known as the Liberland Aid Foundation (LAF) for the purpose of providing Liberland supporters a path to provide humanitarian assistance.

Liberland Aid Foundation is a U.S. registered not for profit organization that received IRS 501(C)(3) status in 2019, thanks to the expertise of Stephen Wood. This allows donations made to the LAF by US citizens and residents to be considered tax deductible contributions by the IRS.

LAF’s mission is to serve as a charitable and educational organization that allows freedom-loving people to channel their generosity into needs-based humanitarian assistance and other benevolent endeavors based on the principles of voluntary action; to promote self-help through education about entrepreneurship and markets.

“We envision a world where trust exists between partner nations, and humanitarian efforts help to alleviate human suffering so that people can live a dignified existence in a more peaceful world.” Liberland Aid Foundation

The Liberland Aid Foundation is focused on providing humanitarian aid, disaster preparedness, food assistance, water sanitation and hygiene, education and training, with an emphasis on environmental standards, conservation and sustainability.

All donations made to the Liberland Aid Foundation go towards helping people in crisis situations obtain the relief they desperately need.

If you are interested in making a donation and helping LAF achieve its goals there are several options available.

Supporters can donate directly through the LiberlandFoundation website, which will allow you to donate either cryptocurrency or dollars.

Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice. All you have to do is follow this link above, sign up and choose Liberland Aid Foundation Inc, and Amazon with automatically donate .5% of your order to LAF.

Supporters can also donate through Facebook, and I encourage those who are on Facebook and would like to stay up to date with the latest news to join and share the group with others they think may be interested.

Virtual SSF Summit: Startup Societies in a Post-Covid World

0

CHECK OUT THE WEBSITE

In the aftermath of Covid, the world will need to rebuild economically and politically. To prepare for this, the Startup Societies Foundation is hosting a virtual summit that will explore how special jurisdictions can combat pandemics and rebuild governance institutions & economics in the aftermath of Covid 19.

This conference will explore how small and special jurisdictions have an advantage when dealing with coronavirus and similar pandemics. Their size makes it more manageable for governments to trace goods, people, and to implement drastic measures to fight health threats. Successful containment strategies within Hong Kong, Singapore and Macau are evidence of this. 

Other special jurisdictions, like Special Economic Zones (SEZ) can facilitate trade as states enact policies to reduce transmission. Trade barriers will likely follow recent travel restrictions as states are more motivated to control their own supply chains.  Yet states must still trade. SEZs can provide a bastion of global exchange amid mounting tensions. Also, SEZs that focus on medical technologies can help firms create preventive treatments or vaccines. These innovative Zones can also be administered by Distributed Ledger Technologies, reducing the need for physical contact.

Special jurisdictions should be at the forefront of PostCovid 19 policy by providing innovative, accountable, and nimble governance. Now, at the depth of the pandemic, is the time to lay the foundations. Don’t Panic. Build.

All ticket holders will receive a
 free copy of our how-to manual to create Startup Societies. Also, to support decentralized applications, the conference will also accept cryptocurrencies to purchase tickets. 

Here are some of our speakers:

LIBERLAND BUILDS STRONG TIES WITH VOJVODINA PROVINCE

0

APATIN, SERBIA – The President of the Liberland, Mr. Vit Jedlička, met the officials of the Province of Vojvodina, Mr Ivan Đoković, the Secretary for Economy and Tourism, and Đurađ Milanović, the director of the Educational Center for Training in Professional and Vocational Skills.

On that occasion, Liberland Group LTD, as a socially responsible company, made the second donation to the Technical High School in Apatin, a 3D printer and engraver, which will be used by the students, along with the previously donated computers, to gain experience in new technologies. The donor, together with the guests from the Province of Vojvodina, visited the School’s facilities and learned about their goals for future development. It has been agreed that the students of the School will present their first printed models at the exhibition that will be included in the program of the upcoming Floating Man Fest 2020. Mr Petar Popović and President Vit Jedlička signed a joint statement on the donation and answered questions from the press.

The joint delegation continued their visit to the Apatin Free Trade Zone, where the construction of a new company office building was made official. It is going to be a Business Incubator and Logistics Center for all interested entrepreneurs and investors. Principal Popović expressed his hope that this will be the place where the cooperation between the Liberland Group LTD, the Technical High School and the provincial Educational Center will reach its full potential.

During the celebration, the delegation visited the new location of the Floating Man Festival and the “Bitcoin Freedom” boat. The meeting was concluded by a tour of the Danube River where the Agreement of cooperation in business education was signed with the provincial Educational Center.

Signing ceremony in Liberland between vojvodina education agency and Vanja Car director of Liberland Group

Liberand Editor in Chief receives Uptrennd 2020 Blockchain Journalist

0

Jillian Godsil, veteran fintech journalist and recently nominated broadcaster, has been awarded the title of 2020 Blockchain Journalist by Uptrennd.com.  

Jillian says: “This award gives me immense personal pleasure. Like many journalists and content creators I dislike when platforms profit off my hard work. Uptrennd is a truly democratised platform that rewards active users – whether they are writing content or engaging with it.

“I think Uptrennd is not only a game changer in its principles but it is also succeeding on a practical and monetary basis – this means it will ultimately replace other centralised and exploitative platforms and I am very glad to be part of the process.

Uptrennd.com first went live on January 1, 2019 in a beta format. It is based on the principle that users are paid for creating content and engaging and sharing content. Upwards of 50% of advertising revenue on the site is then funnelled back to those active engaged users rewarding them for making the site relevant, updated and sticky.

Since formation, the site has grown exponentially with approximately between 5,000 and 25,000 users joining each month to a new total of 119,660 as at 16 June 2020. With continued patterns that number is expected to grow to 1.5million members by January 2021.

The UP1 Token is listed on a number of exchanges including Coingecko.  It is listed using organic growth and the founders did not employ an ICO or any other form of crowdfunding to generate value. Currently the token is valued at $0.004036 and has a market capitalisation of $824,545 according to Coinmarketcap.

The recent Uptrennd.com awards covered 20 different categories from Best Blockchain to Best Traincrash and ran from 25 May 2020 to 1 June 2020 with the winning names announced on 9 June 2020.https://www.uptrennd.com/user/blockchainawards

Jeff Kirdeikis, founder of Uptrennd.com, commented: “Our community is one of the most engaged and fastest growing blockchain social media sites in the world (according to Alexa ranking and Similarweb). The site is an example of true democracy at work with rewards going to those who contribute the most. The Uptrennd Awards is another example of our active community at work and we praise the contenders and final winners. It’s another great day for Uptrennd.com.”

Uptrennd is an online community that pays users to post content.


Users are paid for creating posts, commenting, sharing content and engaging with sponsored content. The value of these points comes from funneling over 50% of the advertisement revenue directly into the Uptrennd ecosystem.

Uptrennd is an optimized social media platform fusion. Uptrennd brings blogs, social feeds, videos, music and news to one all-encompassing home. The majority of online platforms permissionlessly profit off of user created content and attention. Uptrennd is a movement to shift the wealth from corporations to individuals. This ecosystem empowers users to financially thrive through contributing online content.

During the initial growth phase of Uptrennd, the conversation will be primarily focussed around cryptocurrency, blockchain and distributed ledger technology. As the community grows, topics will slowly branch out into a diverse ecosystem across all topics. Uptrennd will be a one-stop-shop for all things crypto. The platform will provide in-depth educational content for absolute beginners to learn about cryptocurrency. Simultaneously, it will also be a comprehensive platform for those experienced to greatly deepen their knowledge. Uptrennd will bring the crypto world to one unified home.

Functionality Example:
John makes an informative post to the “Ethereum” niche on Uptrennd. Steve, Wayne, and Bruce all found value in the post, so they each give John’s post an upvote. John, the content creator, is awarded points for each upvote. These points can then be: redeemed for tokens, used to level-up, redeemed for select promoted placement on the webpage, or spent in the marketplace.

Steve, Wayne and Bruce are all three able to comment on John’s post as well. These comments are also eligible to be upvoted and earn points.

If Steve shares John’s post to his feed and another user upvotes it on Steve’s feed, Steve and John will split the value of the upvote.

Please visit www.Uptrennd.com for more information

Political “left” and “right”

0

BY GUEST COLUMNIST GREGORY V. DIEHL

Does the concept of the political “left” and “right” have any consistent meaning or definition anymore? Perhaps these once useful labels are no longer valid concepts for categorizing an individual’s philosophy on the political structure of a society. Perhaps they are only crude references to vaguely defined packages of ideas, reinforced by the two major political parties that control of the system and benefit from their prominence.

There are, at any time, only a limited number of parties able to compete for leadership in any given democratic system. Have two broad, all-encompassing categories to place them in makes it easier for the average voter to pick a team to root for. It makes it easier to adopt the group mentality as part of one’s identity because all nuance and detailed examination are stripped away.

Sure, there may be layers of disagreement within a party, but almost never enough to cause a severe break in the system, to split one large collective into many smaller ones.

In the same way, there are only a handful of major religious groups within most nations. Minor denominations may be endless, but they almost all fit under broad umbrella religions like Christianity, Islam, or Judaism. No one ever loses sight of what team they are really on in the end, and therefore neither do they ever lose sight of the “other” they are opposing.

If you ask people to tie the libertarian philosophy to a particular “side” of the specious political spectrum, many say that it falls squarely on the right. Right? After all, the right is supposed to lean toward individualism and the left toward collectivism. The philosophy of liberty is one that empowers to the individual to free themselves from the will of the collective.

But maybe the division isn’t quite as clear cut as that.

Individualism and Collectivism on the Left

How should we categorize people who support the individual right to bodily autonomy? It is typically considered the leftist position, for example, to support safe medical abortions and the freedom to put whatever substances one wants into their own body.

But how, then, could the left be considered collectivist?

The collectivist approach is to use the force of the law to limit what others can do with their own bodies. It is the leftists, in these cases, who operate in an individualist capacity, with respect for personal sovereignty.

Where the political left shows its collectivism is in matters related to the social services they feel entitled to receive at the expense of the collective. Healthcare, education, and various other examples of what they see as “basic human rights” requiring the extortion of funds are a significant part of what defines the left’s political identity.

Individualism and Collectivism on the Right

The right is considered more concerned with the good of the individual, even at the expense of society. This is certainly true when it comes to many fiscal matters where their money is at risk of being forcefully redistributed for purposes they don’t support.

However, the right’s collectivist side emerges when they create laws that restrict how people’s private lives. This is often with the justification of preventing degeneracy or defending against perceived attacks upon sacred traditions. Whether it’s immigrants coming to their country and “stealing” their jobs or homosexuals entering into matrimony, the right may fight with the full force of the law to preserve their hallowed way of life.

Essentially, the fatal collectivist flaw of right-wing philosophy is to treat another person’s life as if it were your responsibility to manage without their consent. From that twisted perception, we accept that the things someone else does to themselves are actually being done to us. We believe our intervention in their life is a form of innocent and necessary self-defense against their perceived moral failings.

Collectivism on Both Sides of the Bird

On an intuitive level, it’s easy to understand the appeal of both varieties of collectivist ideals. Believing that services like education and healthcare are a fundamental human right necessary to the function of society makes it easy to argue that they should be provided to all people, no matter how. It’s a very tribal approach to handling the interdependence of people living together for mutual benefit (i.e., “You help take care of me when I need it, and I’ll act in kind.”).

Where this intuitively appealing thought process falls apart is at scales far beyond the natural agreements individuals are capable of making with one another. Spanning far beyond the limits of Dunbar’s number is a vast world of endlessly variated peoples. People you will never have a close, personal relationship with most of them, you could never come to form intuitive agreements that ensure you will all willingly watch out for each other.

Collectivism aims to forcefully manufacture these tribal bonds on a scale that can never work for limited human psyches, and the mechanism for doing so is state-sponsored violence.

We can, similarly, view the right’s need to assume power over their neighbors’ bodies through a tribal lens. From the point of view, they can be said to be trying to mitigate behaviors they consider harmful to the health of the tribe. It may be no personal concern of yours if your tribe mate chooses to inject potentially dangerous or addictive substances into themselves or participate in non-traditional forms of sex. Still, what will become of the culture of the tribe you depend on to survive if such habits and beliefs begin to proliferate?

Will there be any room left for you and your incongruent way of life at the end?

So, in a certain way, mutual agreements with one’s close connections about a particular way of life can be seen as mutually assured self-defense.

Individualism as a Total Concept

Though it shares qualities with both sides, where the libertarian philosophy truly stands out is that it excepts the intuitive collectivism of neither. It, through rational analysis and uncompromising dedication to first principles, knows that a society cannot be optimally healthy without the actual agreement of all its participants to uphold the ideals it lives on. It is not enough to assume you know what is best for the collective and use your might to make it so.

By empowering the individual to make these kinds of decisions over their own life and property, the libertarian philosophy as an absolute does the most possible to protect each and every person from well-intention meddling in their private affairs. It is the only sensible way forward for a species that long ago evolved out of the basic tribal unit and into the planetary scale of a globally connected society.

We both have more opportunities for socialization with other people and more considerable discretion over how and why we choose to socialize (or not). By abandoning the false dichotomy of what style of collectivism we prefer, we will be able to build previously unimaginable types of prosperous and free societies.  

The impact of Libertarianism on William Quigley from WAX

0

“I reckon Libertarianism is largely misunderstood. Let me explain. I am a venture capitalist and that is all about the free market. It is about helping people innovate and improve their business and giving them the capital to do it.

“Whereas traditional banking is very bureaucratic. There are set rules and if people don’t meet those requirements then they can’t get a loan. It’s a very closed environment.”

William believes that libertarians tend to be much more open minded and flexible. He would love if all customer service agents were libertarians as he reckons their views would be much better than the top down approach. He also thinks that the libertarian message is often judged quite harshly – it doesn’t sound as appealing as the progressive message which says it will take care of everyone.

“In reality, the libertarian viewpoint is to create a level playing field for everyone. It does away with crony capitalism, the idea of having a master. In addition, when you look at today’s capitalism it is most certainly not free market capitalism. In 2008 the banks ran amok and were bailed out by the public purse. That is not a level playing field at all.”

Curious Customers or Convenient Customers

When it comes to the customer, William’s years at Disney taught him it is not curiosity that keeps the customers but convenience.

“For sure customer services must be curious to understand the customers but when it comes to customers the main thrust is convenience.”

William uses the phrase that consumers ‘pray to the God of convenience’ in which customers will always defer towards the most convenient path. Passwords are often bypassed if let and customers will even purchase a lower quality product, even more expensive, if it is easier to use.

“I often wonder who someone like me – with a keen focus on making things easy and convenient for customers – ended up in Blockchain.”

HODLing during a Bubble

William has seen his fair share of bubbles; financial, housing, dot.com and crypto. And while he appreciates it can be hard to see beyond the edge of the bubble, even if you suspect you may be in a bubble, to the other side. It’s human nature as he sees it to jump ship. However, his advice, if you can hold onto whatever it is you are into, hodl, and only look to get out when you reckon it is 25% up on the bottom.

“Not 10% because that can often be a dead cat bounce, but 25% is a good rule of thumb.”

While William emphasizes he is not a financial advisor and this is not financial advice, he does enjoy watching assets. It is his job to evaluate assets and this is where the value of assets can be confusing.

“In tough times, like a recession or with bad financial news, the stock exchange can still go up which drives people nutty. It doesn’t make sense but of course the markets don’t work on current value, they track future values.

“Like right now there are 40 million Americans out of work but the markets are not reflecting it. The markets are expecting a V shaped recovery after COVID. This is a man-made crisis if you will, and once the lockdown is lifted, the economy is expected to recover very quickly.”

ArchAgenda Curates Liberland Design Competition 2020 – A Global Design Competition for the 21st Century Micronation.

0
Patrik Schuamacher - juror
Patrik Schuamacher - juror

By GUEST COLUMNIST Mitchell Mahaffey

Global design and architectural minds will soon compete to build the most efficient and livable version of The Free Republic of Liberland.

Just over five years ago, The Free Republic of Liberland was proclaimed as a libertarian utopian micronation, situated on disputed land between Croatia and Serbia. Founded on the principles of libertarianism and anarcho-capitalism, the world’s youngest micronation garnered keen interest from over 200,000 global individuals who registered for citizenship within the first week of proclamation. To date, Liberland has received over 600,000 applications for citizenship.

With this incredible amount of interest from around the globe, there arises a significant challenge; the micronation encompasses just 7 square kilometres of land, a challenge facing Liberland Founder and President Vít Jedlička who mentioned that: “The citizenship is only limited to 120,000 people. it’s pretty dense to consider 120,000 citizens living there.”

In order to ensure the future success of Liberland, its design and architecture must optimize the use of  its 7 square kilometers to perfection. Every precious piece of land must be utilized to its fullest capacity, to create a space that is liveable, enjoyable and sustainable.

To accomplish this formidable task, ArchAgenda LLC, a research-based architectural and computational design lab dedicated to advancing radically innovative architecture agendas, will be curating the Liberland Design Competition 2020. The competition will soon draw design talent from across the globe to envision the architectural future of the new micronation, based on its aspirations for individual and collective freedom, autonomy, minimal governance, voluntarism, charity, fair free markets, non-aggression, diplomatic goodwill, innovative entrepreneurship, and ecological responsibility, all supported by a distributed and transparent peer-to-peer computational network (blockchain). The competitors will be challenged by the curator to translate the untapped potential of distributed peer-to-peer computational networks into architectural and urban designs, and to propose nature-like systems that deliver urban synergies and design fluidity.

If the curator’s design guidelines, coupled with extreme population density and limited space weren’t enough of a challenge, competitors must also consider Liberland’s close proximity to the Danube river, which is notorious for periodically devastating floods. Whilst considering the flooding, the architectural design must be sustainable, given the limited space and resources available. 

Jillian Godsil, editor in chief of the Liberland Press and judge with the competition says:  “I will be interested to see how the entrants can incorporate blockchain into the development of Liberland. Blockchain is already being used as the bedrock of the governance and I am keen to see what inspiration, real or intangible, will be derived from blockchain in the development of the built infrastructure.” 

Director of ArchAgenda LLC and Lead Strategist of Liberland Design Competitions, Daniela Ghertovici mentions: “In this unprecedented moment of global crisis, we have the opportunity to collectively rethink the design strategies of  our built environments. As countries converge on drastic social control measures that aim to combat the Coronavirus pandemic, the fundamental infrastructures of every societal function system have been threatened with collapse, or at best, an unstable future. There is a newfound urgency to activate innovative agendas to  counteract this new normal. Liberland is the optimal incubator and role model for new societal agendas and a vision for cities of the future.”

Registration for the competitors in the design competition is scheduled to open on May 13, with submission of designs, judging and the distribution of prizes to occur in late 2020. Given the current isolation mandates in most jurisdictions around the world, this year’s Liberland Design Competition will allow many architects and designers to direct their creative energy into a 21st century micronation that values liberty and sustainability.


To  Liberland Design Competition 2020 website is now LIVE

Liberland 5th Anniversary – Presidential Opening Speech

0

President Vit Jedlička’s opening speech for the 5th Anniversary of Liberland celebrated by an international Virtual Conference with 27 different speakers including John Dalli, Roger Ver, Ron Paul, David Friedman and many more leaders.

Dear Liberlanders,

Thank you for joining us for the fifth anniversary of Liberland.  It has been a remarkable time with some remarkable achievements.  There is no doubt that Liberland is the most successful startup nation in the new millennium, and we have done some extraordinary things with some 600,000 people now on board and supporting Liberland. 

We have built our representative offices in more than 100 countries around the world.  We have attracted the most famous and the greatest scholars in the liberty world that are joining us today.  So, I’m more than excited that things are coming together after five years.  Some people are a bit impatient, they think that starting a country is a summer holiday job, but that’s not the case, some things just take time and right now we’ve got the best experts in the areas of technology, diplomacy and commerce to come together and build a new society. 

Today we have 27 speakers ahead of us and I believe you will have much better understanding of what our plans are.  There are no doubt many challenges ahead of Liberland and we have a lot of work to do especially in our constitutional effort.  Right now we have four constitutional drafts and we still need more intellectual force to make the blockchain governance a reality.  But I’m very happy that we have Ghostbusters, a famous technological team, with us and working on it.  They have two presentations today and they will be able to show you in detail what our plans are. 

I believe there is no better time than now to work on these things when the rest of the world is under lockdown and we’ve got enormous economic and other challenges ahead of us and I believe it’s also the time for Liberland to flourish when people will be striving to find alternatives to their existing situations.  The future is here for those that are able to adapt fast and that’s why we have built the Liberland Response Center, a place where people can help each other with the troubles that they have during these times.  But it’s also a wholesale distribution center and I’m proud to announce that there are 600 face shields now being distributed as humanitarian aid in Croatia, that there are 600,000 respirators heading to United States and that the whole network of Liberland has been activated to help the world deliver the things that are most needed. 

I’m also very proud about the establishment of Liberland Aid Foundation, the very key institution in establishing the diplomatic relations with other countries, and its activities now span over three continents.  It is really the community that makes Liberland possible, that’s the nation, a group of people that share common vision and have a common goal.  Our government has been quite stable now for more than five years and I’m also happy to announce that we have a new member, Samuel Der-Kazaryan.  Tariq Abbasi has been a moving force of Liberland government now for more than four years.  He has been extremely active in pushing Liberland’s recognition around the world and you will be also able to enjoy the presentation of our foreign minister, Thomas Walls.  Together these gentlemen make a great team to push Liberland to the next level. 

Formerly the anniversary was supposed to be held in Liberland, but since the coronavirus outbreak we had to change our plans and we are utilizing the internet and the virtual area to the limits.  I hope you will be able to enjoy the breaks in some new space and network with other people. 

On the other hand, we are still focused on the Liberland settlement and as we speak there are people pushing the settlement of Liberland forward.  We are also opening up our free trade zone a place where Liberland companies, as well as other companies will be able to flourish under the Serbian jurisdiction of a free trade zone.  I hope that we will be able to attract multimillion dollar investments in Serbia.  In Liberland, we are not bound by a common language, by a common religion, we are not bound by anything else, but a creed of liberty, of freedom.  We believe that the interaction between the state and its citizens should be voluntary and that is the best way to organize a society.  We know very well that these things work.  We  can see the success of other microstates that have embraced similar principles.  I believe we can go further.  We can establish this relation on a completely voluntary basis and that’s why we have come up with the system of merits, where every single taxpayer in Liberland also becomes the shareholder of the very country he is living in.  Our experiment, I believe, is one of the most important experiments in the new century.  The amount of energy that can be unleashed in society is enormous.  A healthy growth of a society is 10% a year, it is four, five, six times more than we see in the societies today, and it might be one of the best responses to the coronavirus crisis opening up the free markets and opening up free interaction between the people.  That’s why we are here, despite all these obstacles and other governments in the way.  We are Liberlanders, we are trying to make this a reality. 

I hope you will be able to enjoy the following 27 speakers and that you will have a lot of value from the whole event.  I also hope that you will be able to enjoyable our blockchain governance in the near future and that right after the traveling bans will be lifted you will come and visit us in Liberland. 

Thank you very much.  https://youtu.be/zeGn6V-wSQM

To watch the video click here

Liberland celebrates 5th Anniversary on April 13, 2020

0

Hosts online webinar on April 11 with international speakers and Virtual Reality hangout

The Free Republic of Liberland is celebrating its 5th Anniversary on April 13, 2020. Originally, the Republic had planned a full two-day conference but due to COVID19 this has been migrated to an online webinar with a Virtual Reality (VR) experience.

President Vit Jedlička will open proceedings and outline the achievements made by Liberland, its officers and citizens over 2019. He says: “While we are now in the middle of a global pandemic, we want to do three things. The first is to celebrate the achievements we have made as a community over the past five years. Secondly, we are actively working to fight the pandemic in our neighbouring countries and all proceeds from the online webinar will be donated to the Liberland Aid Foundation to provide immediate assistance in terms of providing protective equipment and medical equipment. 

“Finally, we want to use the day to look forward to our ambitious plans for Liberland in the future.”

An active component of the one-day event will be the ability to hang out in the Virtual Embassy in the Virtual Reality platform of Somnium Space. 

Speakers include John Dalli, former EU Commission, David Friedman, legal scholar talking on the issue of Government, debating the pros and cons, Joseph McKinney, from the Startup Society Foundation, Roger Ver on the topic of Cryptocurrencies as a solution for Big Government and Michael Carbonara on modern Liberland Banking.

Local officer Vanya Czar will talk about the Liberland Free Zone while Saro McKenna from Ghostbusters will speak about Liberland Blockchain Governance. Daniel Dabek, founder of SafeX, will talk on a decentralised market based on Monero.

Other speakers include Vojtěch Roček, organiser of CoroVent, Pavol Luptak, founder of Paraelni Polis, Naomi Seibt, climate and reason activist, and Nik Halik, astronaut and documentary maker. Finally, Vítězslav Kremlík, author of the Guide to Climate Apocalypse will speak to fear-mongering leading to totalitarianism.

The Conference takes place on Saturday 11 April via the GoToMeeting platform and during the break participants can hang out at Liberland’s VR embassy in Somnium Space.  Tickets cost $20 and can be purchased the website https://anniversary.ll.land/

Liberland is stepping up to the mark by sourcing medical elements needed in the fight against Corona virus or COVID-19.  As the pandemic sweeps across the world, the government of Liberland is working to source masks, tests and even ventilators for use to stop the virus.

President Jedlička has suppliers in China that can ship the required medical devices to the Czech Republic, Serbia or Croatia.  He is talking to relevant government departments in the three countries to see if these contacts are needed. It is also his intention to distribute for free a percentage of the order once confirmed.

‘In these times we all need to pull together,” he said. “To that end we have put together a website where we can share news and help each other.  There are articles on DIY approaches to staying safe as well as myth busters. We are concerned that national governments are not taking this pandemic seriously.  We want to help our Liberlandians wherever they are based.”

The website is at coronavirus.ll.land

The Free Republic of Liberland is a sovereign state located between Croatia and Serbia. Liberland is a constitutional republic with elements of direct democracy. The state has two Vice Presidents and five Ministers. The language is English. The liberland Merit is the currency of Liberland. The country’s motto is: To live and let live.

Free Republic of LIBERLAND opens its first virtual embassy inside Somnium Space

0

Liberland’s embassy opening inside Somnium Space is the start of virtual representations of organisations that share the free and decentralized world view and are ready to enter the 21st century and use it’s technological advances. The immersiveness of virtual reality will make diplomatic matters and talks between all counterparties feel very real while commercial contracts can be recorded on the blockchain to be verifiable and auditable, making the exchange of digital goods and services seamless.

Liberland will pay a symbolic sum of 100 Somnium CUBEs, the in-world currency, for a one year rent of Somnium Space VR land parcel. This goes in the tradition of real embassies that pay usually a fraction of the market price as a sign of friendship and welcomeness of the hosting country.

Artur Sychov, the Founder and CEO of Somnium Space, says: “We have built Somnium Space to allow freedom of expression and communication. I am happy to see thousands of people use our platform for exactly these reasons and Liberland representation is a very important step towards creation of an alternate life and complete digitalization of humanity.”

Vit Jedlicka, the President of Liberland, says: “We are excited not only to open our embassy in Somniumspace, but also hold part of our Anniversary.ll.land conference. We will be hosting prominent speakers like David Friedman as well as members of the EU Commission and members of Serbian government. It is great alternative way how to hold events for up to 500 people without risk of spreading the coronavirus. It is also a fantastic way to present our different architectual concepts. ”

About Somnium Space

Somnium Space is an open, social and persistent VR world powered by blockchain, where everyone can buy land, build or import objects and easily monetize their experiences. Our ultimate long-term vision is to create a virtual environment which offers a rich addition to reality, packed with new and exciting possibilities. Built as a cross-platform world, Somnium Space allows people to experience one constantly expanding, seamless single instance shaped by players. Combined with an in-world economy, it provides a next step towards a true metaverse experience.

About Liberland

The Free Republic of Liberland (hereinafter “Liberland”) is a sovereign state located between Croatia and Serbia on the west bank of the Danube River. On some maps, this area is referred to as “Gornja Siga.” The nearest towns are Zmajevac (Croatia) and Bački Monoštor (Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, Serbia).

This parcel of land came into existence due to a border dispute between Croatia and Serbia. This area is not claimed by Croatia, Serbia, nor any other nation or private entity. Furthermore, it remained unclaimed since the dissolution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1991. In fact, for many decades, it has been uninhabited and no claim was ever made to this piece of land. It was therefore Terra Nullius — a no man’s land — until Vít Jedlička and Jana Markovicova proclaimed it as the Free Republic of Liberland on April 13, 2015. Liberland has set its boundary with ample margin from neighboring countries to ensure that it does not infringe upon the territory of Croatia or Serbia. The total area is approximately 7 km² and is now the third smallest sovereign state, after the Vatican and Monaco. (For more information regarding the border dispute between Croatia and Serbia see the article on Wikipedia.)

Liberland steps up to the Virus and launches coronavirus.ll.land response center

0

Liberland is stepping up to the mark by sourcing medical elements needed in the fight against Coronavirus or COVID-19.  As the pandemic sweeps across the world, the government of Liberland is working to source masks, tests and even ventilators for use to stop the virus.

President Vit Jedlička today announced that he has located certified suppliers in China that can ship the required medical devices to European countries. List of factories was made public on the website including general market conditions as well as terms of delivery.

Newly launched website http://coronavirus.ll.land also has a Do It Yourself section filled with advice for general public how to make respirators, sanitization or ventilators at home. President Vit suggested that H13 vacuum bags have the necessary density to block the virus and are viable replacement for FFP3 filter that are not available on the market at the moment. Coronavirus.ll.land is a website where everyone can contribute with a piece of knowledge to help others to protect themselves and their loved ones.

‘In these times we all need to pull together,” he said. “To that end we have put together a website where we can share news and help each other.  There are articles on DIY approaches to staying safe as well as myth busters. We are concerned that national governments are not taking this pandemic seriously.  We want to help our Liberlandians wherever they are based.”

The website is at coronavirus.ll.land

Are Libertarians More Like Democrats or Republicans?

0

By GUEST COLUMNIST Gregory V Diehl

People today tend to categorize their political values and beliefs on a binary spectrum, ranging from “far left” on one end and “far right” on the opposite. This spectrum is so widely accepted that many of the people who regularly include its terms in their lexicon and mentally include themselves within its confines scarcely stop to examine what it means. Furthermore, they seldom question the validity of this dichotomy.

The left and right are usually characterized by America’s two major political parties, Democrats and Republicans (or “liberals” and “conservatives”), respectively. But where do political groups of lesser prominence fall on the spectrum? Where do Libertarians, the party most closely associated with freedom for the individual align?

To answer that question, you have to dive into what left wing and right wing really mean, followed by what it means to be a member of the Libertarian Party.

According to Wikipedia: “Generally, the left-wing is characterized by an emphasis on ‘ideas such as freedom, equality, fraternity, rights, progress, reform, and internationalism’ while the right-wing is characterized by an emphasis on ‘notions such as authority, hierarchy, order, duty, tradition, reaction and nationalism.’”

Hmmm. At first glance, it’s not obvious which of these two sharply divided categories the US Libertarian Party fits into. Let’s look at its recent history and what new voters could be seeking from their candidates next.

Where Gary Johnson Stood

As a successful Republican New Mexico governor, 2016 Libertarian Party presidential candidate, Gary Johnson pronounced that he had slashed taxes more than a dozen times, balanced the budget, and left the State with a billion-dollar surplus.

Under conventional definitions, reducing taxes and focusing on fiscal responsibility would usually fall clearly under the right-wing paradigm.

Conversely, on addressing the issue of high crime, particularly those that were drug-related, Governor Johnson noted that half of what the State of New Mexico was spending on law enforcement was being “wasted” on drug-related crimes. He further proposed that, for instance, the use of marijuana be treated as a health issue and that, further, it be decriminalized.

Granting individuals the right to legally choose for themselves what they put in their bodies? That’s undeniably left-wing activism.

Reputed to lack interest in policy details, Governor Johnson took a more partisan approach to governing during his second and final term as New Mexico governor.

Several significant proposals to do with tax reform, health care, education, jobs, the State of the economy, its budget deficit, the promotion of civil liberties, the use of military force or the lack thereof, legalizing marijuana, and dealing with the environment were put forward during the 2016 presidential campaign. Johnson’s proposed tax reforms would furthermore incentivize the private sector to create millions of much-needed jobs.

Another of his radical proposals dealt with the administration of the State. State bankruptcy filing would be allowed, while negating any chance of the Federal government coming to the financial aid of any one troubled state. A move away from federal power and toward greater state power is undoubtedly a step toward smaller government, a traditional right-wing value.

Free-market principles were at the heart of the 2016 campaign when pouring over documented opposition to the Affordable Care Act. Proposed budget cuts would have negatively affected the military. There was even an endorsement of the Trans-Pacific Partnership with the proclamation that this partnership was indeed promoting free trade.

How Libertarians Feel about “Leftist” Ideals

There are many on the left who support the Libertarian Party’s proposals to legalize the “liberal” use of marijuana. This falls in line with the “no victim, no crime” principle, which basically claims that people should be allowed to do what they want with their own lives so long as it isn’t hurting anyone else.

Of course, where this agreement often falls apart between political parties is exactly what constitutes “hurting” someone else, which might explain why Democrats are so often opposed to the Conservative ideals of loosening business restrictions and allowing entrepreneurs to do whatever they want for the sake of profit.

Individual liberties are undeniably a fundamental part of the Libertarian Party’s platform. The American Civil Liberties Union even afforded Libertarian Gary Johnson its highest rating in lieu of civil liberties. Other than drug decriminalization, the Libertarian Party is vehemently opposed to censorship and the regulation of the internet, the Patriot Act, prolonged detention without trial for prisoners, as well as “enhanced airport screenings” that rob travelers of their liberty and privacy.

What Libertarians distance themselves from Democrats is frequently on the subject of what handouts and amenities Americans are entitled by virtue of the government intervening on their behalf. Libertarians, by definition, are minarchists. They are among the lowest when it comes to the number of services they want to be funded by involuntary taxation and provided by central planning.

Many Libertarians see government involvement in central services like highway planning, military, police, and healthcare as a necessary evil to be monitored and endured. Meanwhile, a typical Democrat wants the central government’s power and funding to provide these things as heightened to ensure all citizens receive equal access to them.

Tossing the Whole Bird out the Window

As Gary Johnson saw it, the Libertarian Party is more culturally liberal than the Democratic Party yet more fiscally conservative than the Republican Party.  Their overriding willingness to legalize same-sex marriages, end capital punishment, and end prohibition of illegal drugs place them closer to the Democrats. Yet, the party maintains positions of lowering taxes, closing down the IRS, and ending the concept of a welfare state, just like the most hardcore Republicans. Perhaps, optimistically, we can see this as embodying the best of both worlds.

So how do we reconcile this dynamic collection of political values with the standard left/right dichotomy that defines modern American politics? Perhaps the answer is not to have to resolve it at all, but to throw the outdated dichotomy out the window. Maybe the most Libertarian ideal of all is for every individual to be able to pick and choose their principles and policies by their own merit, not broad and sweeping category generalizations.

Liberland’s Prospective Urban Planning Regime

0

by architectural guru Patrik Schumacher, London 2020

This is a discussion paper that tries to address the question of Liberland’s prospective urban planning policies. This is not only an important question from an aesthetic and urban design perspective but, more importantly, concerns urban development as a crucial factor in economic development. The critical issue here is the question of how much prescriptive planning, if any, would not only be compatible with the libertarian ideological credentials of Liberland but more importantly how much planning, and what kind, if any, would be optimally prosperity enhancing for Liberland.

The most important proposition of this paper is to recommend for Liberland to start with a simultaneous plurality of approaches, i.e. to work with a plurality of planning regimes rather than with a single regime. The strategic decision would thus be to offer choice to potential developers, investors, buyers and end users. In the overarching context of government as contractually bound service and the pursuit of governance innovation, it is important to experiment and use the initial market feedback from potential investors and then from the measured market performance of built results, for a pragmatic discovery and selection process concerning urban development regimes and policies.

Policy regimes aim at an urban order implying an optimal co-location pattern that maximises positive externalities, i.e. functional spill-overs or synergies, and minimises negative externalities. The maintenance of a nimble, flexible openness to future opportunities is another concern to be considered.

This paper distinguishes, analyses and comparatively appraises three fundamental types of regulatory regimes or planning regimes for urban development, namely ‘sponsored’ versus ‘self-governed’, versus ‘spontaneous’ orders. With respect to sponsored orders the paper distinguishes and compares three subsidiary orders, namely the ‘anticipated’, the ‘curated’ and the ‘rule-based’ form of a sponsored order. The overall system of distinctions developed and employed here reads as follows:

  1. Sponsored Order:
    • Anticipated Order
    • Curated Order
    • Rule-based Order
  2. Self-governed Order
  3. Spontaneous Order

The assumption here is that the various planning regimes listed above are distributed across the land available to Liberland, so that each regime is instantiated and tested in at least one zone or urban district. Regimes can then be expanded or contracted, first based on uptake during the marketing and land sale phase, and later in accordance with the actual urban development experiences on the ground.

In what follows Liberland as initial land owner and contracting party to all initial land sales or leases is here referred to as the ‘Liberland Corporation’, or in short the ‘Corporation’. This phrase leaves it open how Liberland will business-wise be constituted when it hits the ground and concretely implements its preliminary governance software to the material reality of its envisioned territory, i.e. the phrase ‘Liberland Corporation’ leaves it open whether it will operate as, or in analogy with, a customer cooperative, an employee cooperative, a supplier’s cooperative, or as shareholding company, i.e. as an investor’s cooperative. The author has addressed this question in an earlier discussion paper presented at the 2nd Liberland conference. The question of Liberland’s constitution is largely independent of the question investigated in the current paper, namely the question of how Liberland best sets up and orders its urban development space.

The assumption underlying all three planning regimes distinguished above is that the Liberland Corporation will not itself develop and build but sell land parcels to investors, developers or end users. These land assets will be sold with particular covenants that reflect the respective planning regime that applies to the particular land in question. Land sales might be outright sales (free holds) or long leaseholds, e.g. 25, 50, 75 or 100 years, with the option to negotiate lease extensions. The advantage of the leasehold system is that the Liberland Corporation, in the long run, participates in the land appreciation. A further advantage is that the Corporation can redirect land use as land returns at the end of the lease. However, leases are, ceteris paribus, usually less attractive for investors than outright land purchases, and the Liberland Corporation could choose to trust land owners to adapt rationally to unforeseen future conditions. The owners can indeed be expected to redirect land uses in adaptation to new demands and value options, and they would prefer to do this, and might do a better job, without worrying about finite lease terms.  With respect to future openness restrictive covenants or rules that are meant to curb negative externalities are a constraint that might turn out to prevent adaptation. In this case a return of land within a leasehold system might make it easier to reset the rules. Also, the externalities and spill-over effects that motivated the covenants might change and might make the restrictions obsolete. In any event, some way of accommodating such changes should be allowed for.

Properties might have to be re-allocated for the sake of the global city or district benefit. However, eminent domain powers are to be eschewed here, in the context of a libertarian society, in favour of repurchasing rights, perhaps at a pre-established multiples of market value, or of the original purchase price in the absence of a liquid market.

With these preliminary framing reflections and decision in place as underlying assumptions, we proceed with the theoretical exploration of the various regimes or orders distinguished above:

Zaha Hadid Architects – Beethoven Concert Hall Bonn, Germany

1.Sponsored Order

The Sponsored Order implies that the Liberland Corporation is acting as authority just as municipal planning authorities do now everywhere. The crucial difference to normal practice here is the general difference that sets the whole idea of Liberland as ‘free private city’ apart from all existing governments: the institution of an explicit “social contract” that clarifies the rights and obligations of the parties without customers or citizens being subject to one-sided changes of the overarching terms of the agreement. This ‘enhanced rule of law’ contrasts with all current systems of government, including democracy, where individual citizens’ are never safe from unilaterally imposed changes to their economic rights and obligations.

With respect to the Sponsored Order we can distinguish three sub-variants, namely the anticipated, the curated and the rule-based order. In all three sub-variants order is maintained by the Corporation acting as authority. However, the three sub-variants, while often blended in practice, exhibit important differences that deserve to be distinguished.

Anticpated Order

In both the Anticipated and the Curated Order the Corporation generates a relatively detailed master-plan that operates via positively imposing building functions, building types, building lines, maximum heights etc.

In the Anticipated Order this master-plan becomes the basis for the reliable anticipation of how each parcel sold is embedded in a larger context. The master-plan reliably anticipates the road network, public spaces, the building forms in terms of building outlines and heights, and possibly further specifications as well as prescriptions of land uses, possibly very detailed.  In the anticipated order only developments anticipated in the masterplan are permitted.

The advantage of certainty for investors, namely that the possibility of unwelcome surprises is excluded, is paired with the disadvantage that the prescribed developments might be coming forth only slowly, if at all, if the masterplan misjudges the market desires. This kind of prescriptiveness puts no brake in development only where the locational attractiveness and the associated development pressure is so high that all uses want to pile in anyway. Then use selection is viable without slow down.

Zaha Hadid Architects – Bergisel Ski Jump Austria

The Curated Order

The Curated Order is more flexible via the discretionary powers granted to the planning authority.

This discretionary regime is thus a response to the disadvantage of the rigidly binding masterplan and offers flexibility via ad hoc adjustments to the masterplan responding to unanticipated demands and market conditions.  Order is here maintained via the Corporation’s case by case appraisal of how a submitted development proposals fits into the overall curated value proposition originally envisaged. The Corporation maintains the right to approve or disapprove each individual proposed development in light of the overall city or district value, thus representing the collective interest of all citizens, resident firms and land owners in general, inclusive of regard for future city development potentials. This implies also the possibility of a shift in the overall urban agenda.

The disadvantages of this approach are well rehearsed: the uncertainty of gaining permission might discourage potential developers to invest in the effort of elaborating a proposal in the first place. Also, even if this 1st hurdle is overcome, the permission and negotiation process is costly and time consuming for both parties. Therefore it is advisable to maintain an evolving up to date masterplan as underlying default option for permissible development.

Further, the possibility of downstream context transformations remains a disadvantage for buyers who value certainty of final global outcome and want to avoid surprises that thwart their long term plans and calculations.

Example: Development in London is subject to strong discretionary planning powers. 

Zaha Hadid Architects – Bora Residental Tower, New Mexico

The Rule-based Order

The Rule-based Order imposes strict rules and development constraints on all parcels.

These rules are usually restrictions rather than positive impositions, i.e. prescribing height or GFA limits rather than exact heights. These rules might be varied per predefined zones, or even per parcel. Everything that is not explicitly forbidden is here permitted.

The rule-based approach is exemplified in the US, for instance in New York. Here the planners have no, or much less, discretionary power in relation to individual developments.  As long as developers stay within the rules they cannot be refused permission. This gives a highly valued certainty to those looking at buying parcels and investing in development, i.e. certainty with respect to whether they can realize what they intend to do, while making less predictable what is happening around them in comparison to the anticipated order.

This certainty about development rights also reduces the transaction costs and the costs of the administrative processes associated with development. This probably also speeds up the development process in comparison with the anticipated order and the curated order.

The disadvantage is that the overall shape and character of the city is less predictable. All we know is that the shape of the city will not violate the general abstract rules imposed. However, to the extent to which we can trust the rationality of the market process as a process that aggregates and coordinates the dispersed rationality and knowledge of individual investors, who come together to benefit from each other in an evolving urban network garnering synergies, we can predict that the overall value generated, possibly via unexpected solutions, will probably exceed any anticipated or curated value proposition.

2.Self-governed Order

The Self-governed Order implies that the Corporation, in the districts so designated, is devolving the planning authority to the landowners or to all property owners invested in the district. This implies a land owners’ or property owners’ democracy, albeit with voting powers best allocated by land share, i.e. in proportion to the size of the property, in analogy to the self-governance rules of share holding companies. These rules will initially be constituted by the Liberland Corporation in order to give clarity to this proposition and to overcome potentially costly transaction complexities. However, the constitution itself might also be allowed to evolve through a self-induced and self-regulated self-governance process.

The main differences to the usual municipal democracies is firstly the fact that a self-governed planning regime is restricted to matters of urban development, secondly that the right to vote or otherwise participate in the governance and decision process is restricted to land owners, and thus excludes resident tenants, and thirdly that voting power is allocated by share rather than according to the one person one vote principle.

This is to avoid the problem of universal suffrage democracy, namely overburdened, uninformed and indeed rationally ignorant voters who are vulnerable to demagogy.

In contrast, the major land and property owners are well placed to discuss and take decisions with regard to appropriate collective action measures for the benefit of all end users of their properties, and this includes the district’s and wider city’s citizens, as well as the future citizens and customers, individual and corporate, the land owners would like to attract. Collective action issues include potential negative externalities of particular potential developments as well as infrastructure investments that are not always forthcoming spontaneously.

Value maximizing decisions are best taken by the stake-holders who have the knowledge and incentive to do so as rationally and as effective as possible, and value maximising decisions are indeed utility maximising decisions, and thus imply the best known overall land utilisation.

Some large investors might prefer the Self-governed Order over the Sponsored Order as it empowers them in shaping the destiny of their district. The advantage of the Self-governed Order over the Sponsored Order is that the rationality of the district development policies can benefit directly from the lived experience, knowledge and incentives of the land owners.

A potential disadvantage might lie in the difficulty and costs of the democratic collective action process that is implied here. Where delegation of powers becomes necessary, due to scale and due to the complexity of collective action issues, principal-agent problems and the danger of corruption come into play.

There are many examples where land owner associations have solved collective action problems and formed for the sake of collective district improvements. However, there is no example the author is aware of where such land owner associations have taken up the full responsibility of urban planning self-governance.

3.Spontaneous Order

The Spontaneous Order regime is the only urban development regime that is not assuming any capacity for any form of centralized collective planning action. The assumption here is that the gains that might be achieved via collective action might not be worthy its costs and inherent dangers and that the spontaneous formation of an efficient order is possible, even likely via the free accumulation of individual choices, each informed by individual knowledge, imagination and incentives. The phrase ‘spontaneous order’ was used by Friedrich von Hayek in a more general sense. While the phrase is used here, in this working paper on planning regimes, restricted to spontaneous urban order, this concept can be understood as falling, as special case or subset, under Hayek’s more general concept, thereby making Hayek’s more general, related insights about the use of knowledge in the economy and about competition as a discovery procedure relevant here. After all land and real estate markets are, first of all, also markets, albeit with some special features.

Under the Spontaneous Order regime land is sold without any use and density restrictions, indeed without any restrictions whatsoever. The respective zone might be referred to as the “wild zone” or the district for a “free for all” form of development. This might appeal to some potential investors and might attract truly creative and entrepreneurial investors, developers as well as resident tenant entrepreneurs.

Total development freedom is conceivable where the traditionally severe negative externalities associated with heavy industry or large scale manufacturing, in close proximity to residential and cultural facilities, is no longer to be expected within an urban area, in the era of the post-Fordist knowledge economy. The Spontaneous Order thus becomes viable in principle when the uses that are to be expected include forms of living, forms of knowledge work and forms of consumption and recreation, without large scale physical production coming into play. Working, living and consuming hardly disturb each other and in fact often desire and benefit each other’s proximity. The need for the traditional segregative functional zoning is thus historically obsolete.

With opting for an unrestricted 1st world urban “wild zone” or “free zone” Liberland could make a mark and stand out distinctively against the backdrop of urban overregulation everywhere in the advanced economies, especially in Europe. The general failure of European democracies to unleash entrepreneurial creativity is especially acute in the urban development arena, where inflexible density restrictions, and strictly prescribed land use allocations, together with prescribed standards, stifle and misdirect development.

There are many considerations that recommend a very high degree of unconstrained urban development freedom. Cities facilitate the sharing of services, the exchange of knowledge, as well as direct cooperation and collaboration. The wild zone allows for creative entrepreneurial energies to be unleashed thereby increasing the likelihood to discover the solutions and at patterns that integrate the many potential purposes, functions and business plans that would most effectively utilize the land resources available. That’s what markets do best. This paper argues that land parcelling in the Spontaneous Order zone should also emerge spontaneously via market demand. This would allow for very small initial investments. This would also accelerate the churning of ventures, giving the whole process its required pace and thus a chance for each or most sites to cycle through a number of trials until uses synergize with the wider context and with each other. 

The freedom of mixing land-uses is crucial for the vitality of the city. Only a creative trial and error process guided by price signals, as well as by the profit-and-loss selection system, can discover and optimize, at each individual site, the most value-enhancing use-mixes that best synergize with the particular urban adjacencies of that site. It is precisely these functional synergies that motivate us to agglomerate in cities in the first place. The planning bureaucracy lacks the requisite knowledge, as well as agility, and often the incentive, to optimize and maximize value.

In the free zone each urban entrepreneur is free to find any available site, and define and calibrate a value-enhancing mix of complementary uses that also complement and synergize with the already existing or planned adjacent uses and their audiences. This way unique and uniquely integrated urban districts have a good chance to evolve, districts with urban mixes that no central curator could have imagined or fine-tuned. However, at a further stage a curator or larger developer can try to analyse and learn from the spontaneously evolved synergy network in order to imitate its pattern and replicate its success. While nuances might be missed or difficult to replicate, the advantage of such an replicating curatorial effort would be the cutting out of the time and resource consuming trial and error discovery process. Therefore, it is advantageous for Liberland to maintain multiple zones, including the free zone laboratory, but probably without universalising the spontaneous order regime.

To bet on the emergence of a spontaneous order implies an earie uncertainty as to what will emerge, if anything worthwhile. The process is far less predictable. This also, on the positive side, entails the potential for radical innovation because the freedom to try new ideas are granted and those ideas are put to the profit-and-loss selection test and winning innovations are allowed to proliferate without restriction.

The unpredictability of the kind of development that might end up working in Liberland is, in any case, inherent in the very idea and unprecedented proposition of Liberland. In these special circumstances total freedom of settlement might be the best strategy to find settlers at all, and any restriction might curtail a potential but unknown development take off. However, suggestive plans of what it might become might be helpful, i.e, a non-binding plausible vision could be provided.

A temporary disorder might result if there is no shared conception of what Liberland might base its economic life on and if very divergent visions start to place their bets and seed themselves simultaneously, without a lot of synergy potentials. Against this potential danger, as well as against the danger of nobody seeing any potential, the non-binding vision, promoted with conviction might be an anti-dote.

A freewheeling trial and error processes can surprise us with unimagined innovative solutions. But they also have their costs: all the failed trials that must be absorbed when safe bets are eschewed before a something finally works and works well. 

This will inevitably take time but massive white elephant losses are avoided. The absence of regulations and permission procedures is also a (trivially obvious but important) accelerating factor in its own right.

There is also another potential mechanism of playing out a nimble synergy discovery process among many potential investors and entrepreneurs, namely via a prior digital city and community building game. Here we can achieve super nimbleness, without necessarily being constrained to small sites or low-rise buildings that are quick to demolish and rebuild. Such a platform could also be layered and involve not only developers playing a competitive and synergetic “monopoly” with each other but could at the same time already involve endusers. The idea here is that all those who consider joining Liberland or this particular district would evolve an emergent order, or multiple possible orders, together prior to purchase and construction.  The multitude of finally dovetailing plans would not have to use investment sequencing in the real world but in a much time compressed virtual planning world where the plan emerges bottom up as a result of a quasi-market process. Whether such a game would be taken seriously enough to inspire credible hypothetical commitments whether something like this could indeed take off is, of course an open question. This tool itself will have to go through iterative trial and error phases to discover the right balance between a deterring lack of generating credible commitments and a deterring strictness of demanding and insuring credible commitments.

Concluding Remarks

This paper is far from being conclusive. It is a discussion paper that presents an initial exploration, taking a first stab at the crucial questions and considerations unfolded here, questions that will have to be decided in one way or another when business has to start.

When venturing into the unknown, facing uncertain risks and uncertain opportunities with all options considered, where pros and cons can be charted but not easily weighted with regard to their significance in the case at hand, it is probably advisable to start with a multi-pronged approach that lets many flowers shoot out to bloom or perish. Therefore the Liberland Corporation should initially make room for all the possible ways to create an urban order discussed here, and, if only tentatively at first, allocate the different ordering regimes to different parts of Liberland.

End.

Zaha Hadid Architects – Beijing Daxing International Airport

Short bio:

Patrik Schumacher is principal of Zaha Hadid Architects. He joined Zaha Hadid in 1988 and was seminal in developing ZHA to become a global architecture and design brand.

Patrik Schumacher studied philosophy, mathematics and architecture in Bonn, Stuttgart and London. He received his Diploma in architecture in 1990.  He has been a partner since 2003 and a co-author on all projects. In 2010 Patrik Schumacher won the Royal Institute of British Architects’ Stirling Prize together with Zaha Hadid.

In 1996 he founded the Design Research Laboratory at the Architectural Association in London where he continues to teach. In 1999 he completed his PHD at the Institute for Cultural Science, Klagenfurt University. Over the last 20 years he has contributed over 100 articles to architectural journals and anthologies. In 2008 he coined the phrase Parametricism and has since published a series of manifestos promoting Parametricism as the new epochal style for the 21st century. In 2010/2012 he published his two-volume theoretical opus magnum “The Autopoiesis of Architecture”. Patrik Schumacher is widely recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders within the fields of architecture, urbanism and design.

Since 2008 Patrik Schumacher has been increasingly interested and committed to Libertarian ideas and projects. In recent years he has been lecturing widely at libertarian conferences around the world, and is applying libertarian insights to urban development and planning issues.  , In 2018 he published a paper via the Adam Smith Institute entitled “Only Capitalism can Solve the London Housing Crisis” and published “A Capitalist Revolution for Effective Urbanisation” in the Guardian.

Patrik Schumacher joined two Liberland conferences. In the run up to the 1st conference he took a leading role in the organisation and jury of the Liberland urban design competition. At the second conference he presented a paper entitled “Liberland PLC – Corporate Governance Structures as Models for Micro-nation Constitutions”.

Patrik Schumacher is a recipient of Liberland’s ‘1st Class Merit’ award. He received an honorary doctorate in social science from Guatemala’s libertarian university ‘La Universidad Francisco Marroquin’ where he also holds an honorary professorship.


GBA Washington Conference with Liberland

0

The Government Blockchain Association (GBA) ran a Future of Money, Governance, and Law Conference on January 31, 2020.

The conference was attended by six Liberland representatives on Capitol Hill, Washington. Joey Langenbrunner, Pranav Badhwar, Bogie Wozniak, David Molineaux, David Ament, and Steve Wood from Liberland were all in attendance.

Dan Larimer, co founder of Steemit, BitShares and Block One, the publisher of the EOSIO protocol, was a keynote speaker for the conference. Following his presentation, Joey Langenbrunner met with him and discussed how Liberland is using the technologies he developed as a foundation for the governance systems in Liberland. Dan was intrigued, and further talks are planned to continue this conversation. 

Following the conference, the GBA expressed an interest in Liberland formally joining their association as the representative for micronations to Steve Wood, as they have been looking to add this perspective to their group. Vice President Bogie Wozniak concurred with this suggestion, and Steve is following up to determine the details of this relationship.

For more information, please visit the Liberland website

10 things you might not know about Davos

0

Davos – 10 things you might not know about Davos

Freelance journalist Jillian Godsil popped her Davos cherry this year and learnt ten surprising things you might not know about Davos

Now in its 50th year, the World Economic Forum (WEF) summit was first launched by German economist Klaus Schwab. The conference is aimed at working with both private and public bodies with the objective of impacting the global agenda on finances, economics and more recently climate change. It is held at the end of January in Davos, a mountain resort in the eastern Alps in Switzerland. The meeting is by invitation only and brings together some 3000 business leaders, international political leader, economists, celebrities and journalists for 5 days. 

However, there are also many fringe events happening in and around this tiny town which attracts a further 40,000 plus people keen to meet, talk about key issues and do business.

I attended the Davos Summit on the fringe. It was an eye opener but not in the way people might imagine. I attended as a freelance journalist.

  1. The main promenade of Davos is converted into an exhibition space. The promenade itself is relatively short but every shop face gets a makeover so instead of retail outlets the main companies appear to have their headquarters on the main street. False facades and often total re-dos inside would make you think you were inside a major conference rather than on a main street in an Alpine town.
  2. The traffic is legendary.  There is one main street and everyone wants to get up or down it. Lots of Swiss traffic police are stationed at every corner with their distinctive lighted red cones – like stunted light sabres – directing everyone this way and that, mostly at a snail’s pace. Get in early or get stuff in traffic.
  3. No one stays in Davos unless you are one of the exclusive 3000 invited guests. Everyone else scrambles to find accommodation in surrounding towns and resorts. Some people commute in from Zurich every day on the train which is a two hour journey. We stayed in a very pretty Alpine lodge some 90 minutes out of town. And when I say out of town I mean up the mountain. Our group lead had hired a minivan with drivers. Our Davos bus left each morning down the mountain into town on terrifying roads in a route that bonded us all when we survived each journey.  In our resort our views were spectacular and we overlooked a quiet ski lift. While we were there for the conference, other guests were there skiing, and we’d look at them enviously as they sailed off each morning.
  4. Actually, amend that last point. Many people do go skiing while at Davos. The only shops that resist the corporate refurbishment are ski and boot hire shops. Amongst all the traffic and the cars are many skiers heading out for the day.
  5. Boots – wear boots. The pavements are covered in snow. It is freezing – down to minus 15C at night – and it is a hilly town. There are stories every year of falls and broken bones. In fact, I would go one further: invest in crampons. These are like slippers that go over your shoes and provide some traction in the snowy sidewalks. Most people wear boots inside events too unless you are uber organised and carry your loofahs/heels in a bag. A word of caution: crampons are super on the sidewalk but inside on tiles they are vey devil. Either take them off or walk very slowly. Some restaurants have signs saying no spikes allowed.
  6. The very best marketing prize goes this year to Zurich. They set up their corporate headquarters in Davos giving out brightly coloured blue woolly hats. Our first morning walking the promenade saw lots of people wearing them. I had huge hat lust and was contemplating grabbing one off a passer-by. The advice given to me was to only grab a hat off someone that I could beat in a fight or outrun. Before such extreme measures were implemented, we spotted the source of the free hats and got our own with no one injured in the process.
  7. Security. Given the number of important officials, politicians and celebrities around, the security is very tight. Lots of armed police and check points in and out of the town. You have to carry your passport with you at all times. Then there is the issue of gaining security passes to go into the main hotels. Let me just say it is very complex and quite expensive. Ask me again if you want to know how to do it but for first timers it is another thing to drive you crazy.
  8. Official news. Most of the hoi polloi do not get anywhere near the headline guests. It is better to watch the news each night to catch up on the events and speeches. Having said that, one night while we were waiting outside a hotel for our Group Van to bring us home, former UK prime minister, Tony Blair walked within one foot of me as he gained his official car.
  9. The main summit has many events but the fringe summit has zillions.  Trying to keep track of all the talks, panels and networking events is tiring. Join a few WhatsApp groups of seasoned pros who have been there before to get an idea of what is on and where these events take place. Many are held in nooks and crannies as every available piece of real estate in Davos is rented out, leased or hired by incoming companies and organisations.
  10. The final thing I learnt is that to really get the best out of Davos 2021 you need to start planning now. It is not meant for the casual observer. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Winners of Liberland’s Architectural Competition

0

It’s about time you learn who brought the most innovative urbanization concept to Liberland! Right off, we want to thank you for your patience, as the process took quite a while. 

Here’s  final selection of winners after months of work of both our own key members and the jury of recognized architectural experts. We cherish all the teams and individuals who shared their artistic visions of how to turn the 7 km2 of land into a welcoming home and a rising global hub for all Liberlanders.  All design projects require top determination and much intellect, as every piece completes the whole, and that’s why we value your contribution so much and sincerely thank you for it.

Let’s quickly review the challenge our best players had to face:

Design a full visual plan for the urbanization of Liberland’s grounds of mild, LA-like climate exposed to flooding. The project’s focus should be on a green environment joining private and industrial areas suitable for living potential of some 340,000 residents, with basic in and out infrastructure. It should be also flexible in terms of economy and settlement facilities, so that it can be possibly readapted to changing market conditions. This plan should also embody nature and freedom as in line with Liberland’s ideals.

The results come as a combination of the jury’s votes after they considered the popular vote. The winners of Liberland’s Architectural Competition are:

1st place
Studio: RAW-NYC Architects, USA and UAE
Team leader: Raya Ani, Director
Award: 10,000 Merits
Files: link

Highlights: This concept features vertically stacked city layers that can be leveled up with the rising number of inhabitants. Each of the layer’s underside is adjusted for algae urban farming for food and power production without the need for sunlight and for CO2 emission control. The designers went a mile ahead by introducing many energy-saving and waste processing features to keep this futuristic metropolis very self-powered and low on pollution. The project also minimizes the needs for car use, with everything in a maximum of 20 min. walking distance. Overall, the jury found it as stunning and ahead of time – a prime example of socially-friendly sustainable living all could enjoy.

2nd place
Krzysztof Juroszek, Architect, Poland
Independent submission
Award: 9,000 Merits
Files: link

Highlights: Mr. Juroszek prepared an exceptional, in-depth state-city plan founded on landmasses elevated 3m above the Danube river to reduce flooding risks. It includes an ambitious grid-based land development simulation based on potential lot value calculations that also consider wind ventilation conditions to keep residential areas non-polluted. He was able to stand out by presenting an exceptional sociological insight into Liberland’s future.

3rd place:
Stelios Andreou, Architectural student, Greece
Independent submission
Award: 8,000 Merits
Files: link

Highlights: After carefully studying the area’s topography, this contestant imagined organic building structures based on a hexagon, of size and height related to the spot they’re situated in. All buildings of different purposes are styled in one fashion placed in linear blocks matching the land’s elevation. This design is a very organic approach that expands on the natural beauty of Gornja Siga.

4th place:
Studio: Lab.Id, Argentina
Award: 5,000 Merits
Files: link

Highlights: Designers here encourage nature preservation by lifting the city above possible flooding levels, leaving the wildlife below to be. Furthermore, building foundations are also elevated to minimize forestry removal and let the sunlight feed the lower levels. The project also includes calculations on possible means of air and sea transportation that can reach the country. Check out the second picture to see what planes will fit in our airport lot.

5th place:
Studio: Sergio Bianchi Architettura, Italy
Team leader: Sergio Bianchi, Director
Award: 4,000 Merits
Files: link

Highlights: This plan includes a massive, hexagonal tube-shaped geometrical structure resembling a spaceship, with an airport on the highest level. All of the areas are kept car-free – outside visitors can leave their cars underground and use rapid transit system to move within. The internal skeletal structures are also powered by more than 5 different sources of eco-energy. This would simply be Mothership Liberland if it could fly.

Special jury awards

For “The most futuristic design”
Studio: MIX Design studio, Canada
Team leader: Stanley Lung
Award: 5,000 Merits
Files: link

For “The most structured proposal”
Adam Jaskulski, Architect, Poland
Independent submission
Award: 5,000 Merits
Files: link

Our representatives will contact all winners in the upcoming days. Once again, we thank you for your involvement on behalf of Mr. President and Liberland’s government. Here’s what he says:

“We are blessed to have such great minds involved in creating Liberland. The winning design concepts show that the country can become a prosperous habitable area using latest innovations in green technology to remain mostly self-sufficient. We will further study upon the 1st place project to see if and how exactly it could be introduced in reality. When that’s possible, we want to launch a virtual 3D landscape with building models to help people choose a place to live or to invest in. I congratulate all selected participants for their clever ideas representing the freedom Liberland stands for.”

The competition’s jury included:

  1. Patrik Schumacher, Partner at Zaha Hadid
  2. Vedran Mimica, Professor at IIT College of Architecture in Chicago
  3. Alisa Andrasek, Founder of Biothing and Partner at Bloom Games
  4. Bruno Juricic, Architect, Curator and Scholar
  5. Shady A. Michael, Founder of S+ Studio
  6. Martin Hruska, Owner of S.A.L.D Studio
  7. Jan Petrs, Founding Partner of Studio Archistroj
  8. Daniela Ghertovici, Founder and Director of Archagenda LLC

What’s next

We want to stay realistic and will not share unreasonable future predictions. The next step for our nation will be introducing first settlements… on the Danube, actually. It’s called Seasteading. Designers are now giving us solutions for boathouses that could appear near Liberland even this summer. Stay updated with us – we’ll spread the word on Facebook as this moves on. Fingers crossed!


All image files are downloadable in a kit from here. Media inquires are welcome.
Please contact press@liberland.org with your story – we’ll do everything to help.

Free Private Cities Architecture Symposium – Article by Daniela Ghertovici

0
Andres Bertoni, Leon Carpman, Agustina Gonzaělez Cid, Matias Imbern, Agustin Ramonda, Rodrigo Salgado

by Daniela Ghertovici

The fluidity, mobility and dynamism of 21st century network society is transforming the way we design cities. The paradigm shift in architecture and urban design is marked by an intense focus on systems of communication, complexity, adaptation, correlation, intensification, co-evolution, legibility, responsiveness, order, and freedom. This shift towards evolutionary systems thinking takes into account the role of agents in social change, insofar as innovation is driven by individual choices. Urban design innovation is accelerated by the convergence of natural and artificial life and intelligence (Ai, AR, VR, IoT, robotics), the advancements in telecommunications and mass media, the explosion of real-time decision systems via big data and artificial intelligence, the emergence of distributed computational intelligences such as blockchain, and the movement towards knowledge economies anchored in research and development. In this context, the world is a laboratory, and entrepreneurship in an open market is the best avenue for creating wealth and improving quality of life for the greatest number of people.

As Patrik Schumacher remarked in his speech at UFM, “one way to think about societal progress [is] becoming more free and empowered in the world. We are in this period where I believe that a massive expansion of individual liberties could actually deliver an enormous expansion of material freedoms. But this depends on new technological conditions which make possible the shift from Fordism to PostFordism, which is the microelectronic revolution: the computational empowerment and telecommunication empowerment that allow for totally new degrees of creativity, and an enormous capacity for absorbing innovation.”

nasa-_SFJhRPzJHs-unsplash

The topics of Free Private Cities Architecture Symposium emerged from the agenda of Liberland Design Competition 2020. The design competition stems from the conviction that times of crisis accelerate the emergence of disruptive innovations and novel architectural agendas. Titus Gebel’s theory of Free Private Cities is a radical disruptive innovation in cosmopolitan sociality, and Liberland is the first fully autonomous jurisdiction in the world poised to bring it to its full fruition. Free market urban order, which is fluid, distributed, emergent, and ever evolving, is at the core of the architectural and urban design ambitions of Liberland.

Liberland is an incubator and role-model for a society based on the principles of freedom and anarchocapitalism, powered by blockchain. It is founded on the idea that the societal movement towards individual and collective freedom, prosperity and peace will emerge through the distributed intelligence of autonomous innovators and agents of change. Liberland’s ambition to build the most advanced and sustainable 21st century cosmopolitan micronation offers an ideal testing ground for innovative urban design strategies. Its new possibilities for liberty and unleashed free market entrepreneurship powered by blockchain can stimulate a radical transformation of the built environment.

While the vision for Liberland and Free Private Cities offers unprecedented opportunities for radical design innovation, most western urban developments remain mired in a stranglehold of bureaucratic overregulation via stringent planning guidelines, futile zoning restrictions, and outdated building codes. Combined with economic stagnation resulting from manipulated markets, innovation in the built environment is evolving at snail’s pace. An overhaul of planning and zoning restrictions, coupled with an unencumbered free market, would accelerate innovation exponentially through the process of entrepreneurial market-driven discovery and testing of novel design and development strategies.

lucas-albuquerque-w7-mXwy1pQ8-unsplash

From these initial premises sprung the broader scope of Free Private Cities Architecture Symposium, which aims to kickstart discursive debate on the transformation of architectural and urban design relative to society’s progression towards civil and entrepreneurial freedom. The symposium will explore a wide gamut of theoretical and speculative trajectories about the design of future cities for a highly agile and technologically networked society of the 21st century.

The symposium will open with keynote speeches by Patrik Schumacher, Titus Gebel and Shajay Bhooshan, followed by two sessions that will each include short presentations and group debates. The symposium will end with a round-table debate that includes all the speakers from both sessions, followed by Q&A. There will be a half hour intermission with brief presentations on private cities around the world, and the inauguration of the digital platform Parametricism.com. The session participants and specific topics are a follows:

SESSION 1: FREEDOM AND URBAN DESIGN Participants: Patrik Schumacher, Titus Gebel, Shajay Bhooshan, Scott Beyer, Vera Kichanova. Discussion will focus on freedom, private cities, charter cities, market urbanism, liquid democracy, economics, markets, distributed intelligence, blockchain powered governance and services, urban and architectural design for free private cities, the migration of architecture to cyberspace, and more.

SESSION 2: CITIES AND DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION Participants: Lev Manovich, Philippe Morel, Neil Leach, Sanford Kwinter. Discussion will focus on big data, cultural analytics, planetary scale computation, terraforming, complex epigenetic systems, soft systems, artificial life and intelligence, biology as information theory, virtual reality, augmented reality, internet of things, blockchain, robotics, and more.

The symposium was Co-Curated by Daniela Ghertovici (Founder of ArchAgenda LLC and Curator of Liberland Design Competitions) and Bruno Juricic (a Juror of Liberland Design Competitions and Founder of Atelier Bruno Juricic).

Free Private Cities Architecture Symposium is a free online event on July 18, 2020. Register at https://freeprivatecitiesarchitecture.splashthat.com

Registration for Liberland Design Competition 2020 is open through August 16, 2020. A 30% discount for professional and student registration will be in effect July 18 – July 25. Https://designliberland2020.splashthat.com.

chuttersnap–PsHeaZC4-g-unsplash

Liberland Aid Foundation (LAF) delivers food to Haiti

0

Partners with the Red Cross to distribute the food

Over 37,000 lbs of food provided by LAF has been delivered to Haiti as part of the LAF humanitarian relief efforts. The food was distributed locally by the Haitian Red Cross and the Global Confederation for Promotion and Development (Confederation). The distribution was well organized and also covered by the local media. People working on the distribution were supplied with masks and social distancing observed wherever possible.

Dr. Steven V. Melnik, Free Republic of Liberland Honorary Ambassador-at-Large who spearheaded this important undertaking said: “The event was a real success on many levels.  Liberland Aid Foundation is committed to providing humanitarian aid during the COVID crises and beyond. This first delivery of largescale aid to Haiti also fostered a formation of a strong working relationship with the Haitian Red Cross. We plan to expand our partnership to the International Red Cross and bring much-needed aid to many other vulnerable countries around the world.”

As of June 23rd, Haiti has recorded 4,300 cases of COVID-19 with 73 deaths. Its borders are closed to the Dominican Republic and all flights have been cancelled. Haiti has seen a sharp rise in cases in June.

Haiti is the poorest country in the Americas – indeed in the whole western hemisphere. Back in 2010 a major earthquake killed more than 220,000 people.  It regularly has outbreaks of diseases such as malaria and cholera, which claimed more than 9,500 people recently.

Haiti only has access to 60 ventilators across the country, limited trained professionals, and a very weak hospital infrastructure supporting a population of 11 million people.

LAF’s link goes back to 2016 when the Foundation was founded in response to the devastation sustained by Caribbean island nations during the 2016-2017 Atlantic hurricane seasons.  Liberlanders began planning on how to provide humanitarian assistance to other countries. Bogie Wozniak, Dave Molineaux, Rabbi Altman, Father Philippe Charles (a president of the Confederation), and Dr. Steven V. Melnik started diplomatic negotiations and fundraising efforts for the Caribbean nation of Haiti.

In Feb 2019 Nicholas Rodriguez and a team of Liberlanders from the United States came together and founded the charitable organization that is now known as the Liberland Aid Foundation (LAF) for the purpose of providing Liberland supporters a path to provide humanitarian assistance.

Liberland Aid Foundation is a U.S. registered not for profit organization that received IRS 501(C)(3) status in 2019, thanks to the expertise of Stephen Wood. This allows donations made to the LAF by US citizens and residents to be considered tax-deductible contributions by the IRS.

LAF’s mission is to serve as a charitable and educational organization that allows freedom-loving people to channel their generosity into needs-based humanitarian assistance and other benevolent endeavors based on the principles of voluntary action; to promote self-help through education about entrepreneurship and markets.

“We envision a world where trust exists between partner nations, and humanitarian efforts help to alleviate human suffering so that people can live a dignified existence in a more peaceful world.” Liberland Aid Foundation

The Liberland Aid Foundation is focused on providing humanitarian aid, disaster preparedness, food assistance, water sanitation and hygiene, education, and training, with an emphasis on environmental standards, conservation, and sustainability.

All donations made to the Liberland Aid Foundation go towards helping people in crisis situations obtain the relief they desperately need.

If you are interested in making a donation and helping LAF achieve its goals there are several options available.

Supporters can donate directly through the LiberlandFoundation website, which will allow you to donate either cryptocurrency or dollars.

Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice. All you have to do is follow this link above, sign up and choose Liberland Aid Foundation Inc, and Amazon with automatically donate .5% of your order to LAF.

Supporters can also donate through Facebook, and I encourage those who are on Facebook and would like to stay up to date with the latest news to join and share the group with others they think may be interested.