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How to Start Your Own Country
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How to Start Your Own Country

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  64 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
Can you really start your own country? Erwin Strauss shows you five different methods for doing just that, as well as everything you need to know about sovereignty, national defense, diplomacy, raising revenue and recruiting settlers. Includes dozens of new-country success stories. Why settle for being king of your castle when you can be king of your own country?
Paperback, 168 pages
Published January 1st 1999 by Paladin Press (first published January 1979)
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Paul Bond
May 26, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Law, including the law of nations, rests on very practical grounds. How do you start your own country? Find a geographic area no one cares about (like an abandoned sea platform). Live off the grid. Mint money, make stamps, draft proclamations. Don't wait for anyone to recognize you -- you have to take nationhood. An enjoyable book mainly for its novelty value and history of micro-nations. But also a useful reminder that every sovereign state begins as a state of mind.
May 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: wideworld
A fantastic passage: "The details of obtaining and deploying weapons of mass detruction are beyond the scope of this book. They are covered in my book _Basement Nukes_ and the United States government publication _Superviolence_.... Such weapons should be planted in likely target areas for remote detonation, as well as stocked in the new country and its immediate vicinity and other locations throughout the world where they will be difficult for enemies to locate, but available in case of need."
Nathan Albright
Jun 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: challenge
As someone who has in the past participated in efforts at encouraging the development of micro nations [1], Strauss brings personal experience that many others are lacking concerning the struggle that people face in establishing their own sovereignty in the international realm. This problem of legitimacy [2] that affects even larger nations with long established claims for statehood is even more critical for smaller realms without a historical and cultural tradition and without the means to defe ...more
Matt Ely
Sep 22, 2015 rated it it was ok
I was drawn to the concept of the book, but it kind of fell short. The biggest issue is just how irrelevant it all is, being about thirty years old. I admit, though, that it's not the book's fault.

What is the book's fault is the way the author uses sources. His tone is so deeply in favor of micro nations that most of his sources are those published by these groups themselves. In addition, he puts a lot of emphasis on just how available he is to help out with anyone wanting to start one of these
Tadas Talaikis
Jun 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: politics
Very interesting book. I'm proud I'm living 25 km away from our own attempt in 1918 - Republic of Perloya (not mentioned). Not including our country's long resistance against Soviets and anyway troubled history.

For more practical purposes, you can relatively easy become just a "citizen without country", and in that case you just use offshore companies to avoid or not to avoid (your decision) taxes without much trouble with own country. Also it is very cheap.
Jan 05, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found out about this book from Cecil Adams (the Straight Dope). The concept is a good idea, but the book was sort of disappointing. Strauss' writing is wry at times, but he doesn't give much insightful or practical advice that you couldn't have deduced on your own. His gratuitous cross referencing becomes grating after a while: it feels like a quarter of the word count of this book is taken up by headings like "ANACHRONISM, SOCIETY FOR CREATIVE - see CREATIVE ANACHRONISM, SOCIETY FOR."
Pat Schakelvoort
Sep 20, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: microstates
The first part could be a more structured and less about acquiring weapons of mass-destruction. The case examples section is an interesting read although dated it gives a good view of motives for trying to establish new states: financial gains, libertarianism, wanting to live unbothered.
Nowadays the vonu approach isn't really seen as microstatism.
Nov 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
It's a real How-To book, but I read it for fun and writing research. As a kid I always wondered how countries got started and why people don't just start their own countries if they don't like the one they're in. Now I know. Other countries won't take you seriously unless you can either a) make them lots of money or b) have the know how to blow them off the map.
Apr 07, 2013 rated it liked it
I would've given this book more stars but at its heart it's short on precise description which limits understanding. The best part came from the various examples of self professed countries in these recent times.
Aug 20, 2012 added it
Very forward thinking and many sharp minded entrepreneurs need to read!!
Andy Weston
Dec 04, 2010 rated it really liked it
essential reading - indeed, a great book to have in your library.
Humorous, but informative - live the dream.....
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American author.

Strauss is well-known for his science fiction fandom, his libertarian leaning and his efforts in the filk music scene.

He was an early (1964) vice president of the MIT Science Fiction Society. In addition, he is the author of the monthly "SF Convention Calendar" in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction magazine.

More about Erwin S. Strauss

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