Island Escapes

One of the more entertaining stories to hit the net over the New Year’s weekend was a tale of some hearty Kiwis who successfully got away from a local alcohol ban by building their own island in nearby international waters.

New Zealanders build island in bid to avoid alcohol ban (BBC News)
To Avoid New Year’s Drinking Ban, Group Builds Tiny Private Island in New Zealand Waters (Grace Guarnieri, Newsweek)

Fun stuff, but these guys were certainly not the first to cook up a politically motivated scheme to get away from it all at sea. The concept has a long, albeit somewhat dubious history. Pirates and the whole Waterworld (IMDb) (Wikipedia) fiasco aside, way back in 1960s there was a relatively well publicized, but ill-fated experiment dubbed Operation Atlantis (Wikipedia).

More recently, there’s the Seasteaders (Wikipedia). They periodically distribute slickly produced updates about how their vision of a floating utopia is just around the corner. Here’s a recent video and story about them.

As Climate Change Accelerates, Floating Cities Look Like Less of a Pipe Dream (Mike Ives, New York Times)

Further afield, here’s a TED talk that presents a serious take on other reasons to take to the seas. It does include a few obligatory libertarian cultural allusions to things like Burning Man (Wikipedia), but it also covers environmentally responsible reasons for the movement like safety, sustainability as well as much needed new additions for cities and slums.

If you watch the talk all the way through, you will see that it also covers a few more exotic topics like private floating islands (i.e. really, really huge yachts). If you’ve never come across that concept before, there are literally hundreds of videos about floating private islands on Youtube.

Now, if you truly love the idea of getting away from it all for libertarian leaning reasons, you could always join the Asgaurdians (Wikipedia). Asgardia is Igor Ashurbeyli’s plan for taking the idea of sovereign nation to space. The Asgardians did just launch their first satellite in November, but no one is suggesting that if you want to move in with them, you won’t have a long, long, long wait.

Asgardia, the world’s first ‘space nation’, takes flight (Andrea Lo, CNN)
Space nation to Earthlings: Do you read us? (Eric Mack, CNET)

Finally, if you are in a position where headlines like this are directly relevant, you may be wishing for a good old fashioned, non-politically motivated island escape.
Bomb cyclone to blast East Coast before polar vortex uncorks tremendous cold late this week (Jason Samenow, Washington Post)

If this applies to you, then here’s a nice 360° Video from Down Under for you.

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