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The State in the Third Millennium

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Prince Hans-Adam of Liechtenstein is able to look at the modern nation-state from many different angles: as a head of state; as a politician, who had to win popular votes in a direct democracy; as a businessman active in different continents; and as an historian who has studied the influence of military technology, transportation and the economy on the workings of the state.

The State in the Third Millennium analyzes the forces that have shaped human history in the past and are likely to do so for the foreseeable future. These include religions, ideologies, military technology and economics. Prince Hans-Adam explores ways to make the traditional democratic constitutional state both more democratic and more efficient. He also discusses strategies on how to realise worldwide the modern democratic constitutional state in the third millennium. He observes that citizens should no longer be viewed as servants of the state, but rather that states be converted into benevolent service companies which serve the people as their customers.

This is an elegant, original and lucidly argued work which will attract all students and observers of modern statecraft.

222 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 2009

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About the author

Hans-Adam II of Liechtenstein

1 book16 followers
Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein since 1989.

He also bears the titles Duke of Troppau and Jägerndorf, Count Rietberg. He descends in the direct male line from merely three of the previous fourteen Princes of Liechtenstein.

The Prince of Liechtenstein has broad powers; a referendum to adopt Hans-Adam's revision of the constitution to expand his powers passed in 2003

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Displaying 1 - 10 of 10 reviews
Profile Image for Booksearcher.
46 reviews49 followers
June 13, 2015
Excellent book. An enlightened monarch of the third millennium shows that only a state model that fulfills the following conditions will survive in the third millennium: abolition of the monopoly on it's territory, allowing of direct democracy at the local level, rule of law, market economics, and the delegation of welfare tasks with which it has been charged to the society. Only then will the state become a service company, that will serve the people, instead of the people serving the state. Then the state will have a stable political and economic system. It is easier to conquer than to rule, this is his recipe for a succesful regime.
The Prince uses historical examples, political, and economic argumentes to make his point, displaying a great understanding of human history, motivations, and objectivesm and showing why nationalistic and socialistic legitimations of the state have failed.
197 reviews3 followers
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December 7, 2022
Wij van WC-Eend een monarchistische microstaat adviseren WC-Eend een monarchistische microstaat.

Mijn aanvankelijke doel van een boek uit elk land ter wereld lezen was om verschillende perspectieven te lezen. Een manifest van een koning die daadwerkelijk nog politieke macht heeft is zeker een nieuw perspectief. Het boek, over de staatsvorm in de post-industriële wereld, is ambitieus maar grotendeels onovertuigend

Allereerst de goede punten:

Het concept van de microstaat is interessant vanwege de kleinschaligheid en de mogelijkheid tot directe democratie. De kritiekpunten op de oligarchische kenmerken van indirecte democratieën zijn herkenbaar, en hij biedt een vatbaar alternatief. Helaas gaat hij niet in op hoe de wereld zou werken als ze volledig was ingedeeld in microstaten, maar gaat hij ervan uit dat als het werkt voor Liechtenstein, het werkt voor elke plek. Het toerisme van Liechtenstein is nu grotendeels gebaseerd op het feit dat het een eigen land is. Als er 130 microstaten in de Alpen zouden liggen, waren ze toch iets minder speciaal.

Ook ben ik fan van zijn radicale ideeën over zelfbeschikkingsrecht op gemeenteniveau. Dit gaat niet gebeuren in de komende tijd, maar het biedt een oplossing voor de paradox van de democratie: dat de demos ondemocratisch is bepaald.

Hij heeft de grondwet veranderd zodat op elk moment er een referendum mag worden uitgeroepen over het afschaffen van de monarchie. Dat is best sympathiek.

De slechte punten:

Deze man denkt neoliberaal het klimaatprobleem op te kunnen lossen, omdat bedrijven natuurlijk heel efficiënt zijn.

Deze man denkt dat sociale voorzieningen in een rijk land niet nodig zijn omdat ze ten koste gaan van geld voor ontwikkelingshulp (maar dat mag ook niet via belastingen gaan, want dat is inefficiënt, dus volgens mij is het zo'n moreel appel-verhaal wat natuurlijk heel goed werkt).

Het boek heeft soms nogal een Model United Nations-vibeje. Ik weet dat hij daadwerkelijk een politiek leider is, maar het voelt alsof hij cosplayt.

Het socialisme en nationalisme worden raar gedefinieerd en samengevoegd. Hij is ook bang voor ze want het zijn ideologieën, terwijl zijn overtuigingen (monarchistisch libertarisme) dat natuurlijk niet zijn.

Zijn wantrouwen naar de overheid toe is chargerend tot het karikaturale.

En hilarisch: Hij bekritiseert het Zwitserse model, omdat hun directe democratie geen remming biedt aan populistische impulsen. Daarom moet er een monarch zijn voor met vetorecht! Want die kan natuurlijk niet meegaan met een populistische ideeën maar zal altijd het goede besluit nemen???

Grotendeels boeiend om te lezen maar waarschuwing voor niet-libertariërs: Je ogen worden moe van het rollen.
39 reviews1 follower
February 6, 2021
This book sells libertarianism and anarcho-capitalism better than anything I've seen, heard or read. The book doesn't mention the word libertarianism and it uses "anarchy" as a synonym of chaos and still describes an anarcho-capitalist society and in fact Prince Hans-Adam II has arguably created one in practice in the state of Liechtenstein.
Profile Image for ElenaSquareEyes.
407 reviews15 followers
July 17, 2022
I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. It’s been a while since I’ve read a non-fiction book that wasn’t a memoir and was instead an in-depth look at a specific topic. Over the years as I’ve become more aware of the politics of my own country, the UK, and international politics I’ve had my own ideas of what I think makes a society or country work and what doesn’t so reading about what the monarch of one of the world’s smallest country’s thinks about this was super interesting. The State in the Third Millennium was written in a really simple and accessible way. Some big ideas are talked about and it covers everything from politics, history, religion, monarchies, and economics but I was never really lost.

I did prefer the first half of the book that was more about the history side of things and how historical examples of different states can guide us on how states succeed and fail today. It gives you the context for the latter half of the book which is the Prince’s suggestions as to what would make a successful state in the current millennium. The latter half was also more of the economics side of things which while still interesting, wasn’t the sort of thing I’m naturally interested so some of those ideas weren’t as easy for me to grasp and some I wasn’t sure I agreed with.

Out of all the books I’ve read for my Read the World Project I’d never have thought a book by the Prince of Liechtenstein would be one of the ones that really made me want to visit the country it’s about – but it did! It often uses Liechtenstein as an example for the various ways a state can be run and learning about how such a small country functions in relation to the rest of Europe and the World was fascinating. Also, how their monarchy work was especially interesting as it seemed like the people have a very different relationship to their royalty to what we do in the UK do to the British Royal Family. It’s like in Liechtenstein they’re not put on a pedestal and they’re a much more modern monarchy compared to the British one and that’s worked in their favour. I think the British monarchy could learn a lot about adapting to the modern world from the Liechtenstein monarchy but I’d doubt they (and the public/press reaction to them) would change any time soon.

I feel like I’ve used the word “interesting” a lot here but it’s true, I did find The State in the Third Millennium very interesting and very readable. It proposes interesting ideas about the future of countries depending how they’re run and provides specific examples of how different systems work, or don’t, depending on the country and the structure they’re built on.
Profile Image for Floris Wolswijk.
69 reviews8 followers
January 2, 2015
The State in the Third Millennium by Prince Hans-Adam II is political theory at its finest. The central question of the book is: What kind of state do we need in the third millennium? Through historical analysis, a broad view on current affairs, and a peek into the future, Prince Hans-Adam II answers this questions to the fullest extent. Central to his work is the hypothesis that people should not be servants of the state, but that the state should become a service enterprise for the people.

After a thorough description of the development of state, and in particular democracy, the book turn to a distinction within democracy. It states that in most Western countries, we are engaging in an indirect democracy, one in which we vote for a party, which then puts forward people in parliament. It is a government that is centralized, and has little feeling of what is really going on in different municipalities. The power lies in the hands of an elite few, and votes are won by being the most popular candidate. Prince Hans-Adam II proposes to give most of the power to municipalities, to govern on a level that is comprehensible for the people to understand, and participate.

Prince Hans-Adam II is a wonderful writer. Through eye-opening revelations, hard truths, and a call to action, he engages you to actively think about the structure of governance. As an economist, monarch, politician, historian, and businessman, he takes on many different angles that will make for a successful state in the third millennium. Although the author of this article is no political studies (or public administration) student, he has had the pleasure of meeting Prince Hans-Adam II. A wise elderly man, that has written down his insights and knowledge in a book you should read when convenient!
Profile Image for Daniel.
7 reviews2 followers
November 10, 2020
One of the only European monarchs with any actual power, Hans Adam II shares his ideas and theories on the future of government in the third millennium. His general idea is that the state should view itself as a service company whose customers are the citizens, as much power should be delegated to localities as possible, as many decisions should be made via direct democracy as possible, and peoples' right to self-determination, to include secession, is paramount. The Prince draws on his own experiences as both a ruler and businessman, as well as the historical record. Hans Adam II is an excellent writer, very succinct and extremely intelligent. Being pro-liberty myself, I was convinced by his arguments and think that his draft constitution from the end of the book is an almost perfect model for states to use to move away from indirect democracy. While I doubt that the Western world will come to its senses and shift course from its current trend of concentrating more and more power with the oligarchy, The State in the Third Millennium has at least helped me refine what I'll be asking of my politicians in the future.
Profile Image for Alla Komarova.
201 reviews186 followers
January 11, 2018
"ДЕРЖАВА У ТРЕТЬОМУ ТИСЯЧОЛІТТІ" - перша перекладна література від Видавництво ДІПА, авторства Правлячого Князя Ліхтенштейну Ганса-Адама ІІ.

Правлячий Князь, дарма, що монарх (це жарт був), написав надзвичайно корисну книгу, яку варто прочитати хоча б вже для того, аби скласти власне враження від того, як виглядає картина світу для людини, яка править цілої країною. Які виклики стояли перед державою, яку й мапі не кожен знайде, а як знайде, то не факт, что роздивиться. Які рішення доводилося приймати і чому, на думку Ганса-Адама, за мікродержавками на кшталт Ліхтенштейну - майбутнє. Він багато говорить про демократію, про її форми та невдачі, наводячи прості приклади та структуручи розмаїття форм політики різних країн.

Ганс-Адам через ретроспективу та інтелектуальні узагальнення робить висновки про те, яка має бути держава у третьому тисячолітті (дарма, що швидкість сьогодення перевищує будь-які прогнозні значення і тому будь-які припущення про те, яким буде 3000 рік - це чистої води відірвані від реальности фантазії). І навіть наводить приклад Конституції такої держави (так ось звідки ця пошесть - на власні конституції у кожну хату - узялася!).

Как підказує мені Goodreads, книга переведена вже на декілька мов (включаючи ту, що ії визерунками замість літер), але прочитала її катастрофічно мала кількість людей, хоча в цілому оцінюючи досить позитивно.

Я теж ставлю книжці високу оцінку - і за текст (хоча він був місцями дещо смішний, як на европейського політика), і за переклад, і за якість друку (ну, це вже до видавництва реверанси).

І це був шостий номер у #книжный2018
Profile Image for Pat Schakelvoort.
564 reviews25 followers
May 14, 2013
Political manifesto of the current monarch of Liechtenstein. Hans-Adam propagates small states in a globalist system with open market. In which each state can specialise in it's own craft.
It's suitable for Liechtenstein to propagate such policies. Although Liechtenstein is barely member of any international treaties.
Hans-Adam doesn't go into the fact that a globalisation projects like the European Union tend to streamline all the national policies of the participation countries. In which the countries have to abandon most of their national virtues.
Profile Image for Hla.
65 reviews14 followers
October 27, 2015
الكتاب يجاوب على سؤال نوع الدولة في الألفية الثالثة. الكاتب شرح وجهة نظره بضرورة تحول الدولة من مفهومها
التلقيدي الى "شركة خدمات" تخدم مواطنيها و تعمل لتحقيق الرفاه لشعوبهامتخذا من تجربته الشخصية اساسا للتحول
من حيث المبدأ الكلام جميل كنظرية لكن كتطبيق صعبة لأجل اعتبارات سيادية و ثقافية
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