Today we will learn about micronations. Micronations are basically what happens when somebody (who already lives in a country) decides that some piece of land he or she owns is now his or her own country. There are other ways they can happen, but generally, the uniting feature of micronations is that they claims themselves as sovereign states without any such recognition from other countries.
This is basically just some dude's house that looks like a big ball and has a sweet name. He declared himself independent from Austria because apparently there are laws against having a big ball house with a sweet name. Not that notable, but man, what a sweet name.
17. Nova Roma
This is basically historical re-enactment people being taken to the next/nerdier level. These people pretty much think they actually live in Rome, only there is one major problem: they're not in Rome. In fact, their "nation" does not physically exist anywhere. Have fun electing a Roman senate of nowhere, NERDS.
16. San Serriffe
This one is actually entirely a typographical-pun-based hoax perpetrated on April 1st by the British magazine The Guardian, similar to the awesome Sports Illustrated Sidd Finch hoax. (Maybe it doesn't belong here because it doesn't exist, but come the fuck on, none of these stupid little sorta-countries exist.) Now, those of you who know me well know that I wage a lifelong war against bad puns, which are about 99% of puns. HOWEVER, I love anyone who can slip this many bad puns into a hoax article and not get noticed:
"The native people of San Serriffe are the Flong. However, the dominant group are of European stock, the descendants of colonists, known as colons. There is also a large mixed-race group, known as semi-colons."
"The relaxation of the islands' strict anti-pornography laws under the Bourgeois government has led to the publication of a series of risqué novels by Serriffean journalists, collectively referred to as the 'Times Nude Romances'."
Those are so horrendous as to elevate this micronation to fifteenth greatest.
15. Republic of Saugeais
This one is pretty cool because the "president" basically tricked a prefect into declaring his made-up country valid. Not that what a prefect said really counts for anything, but he apparently convinced some rube that worked for the French government that his country--in France--was real.
14. The Independent and Republic of Eminent and Valiant Associates
This micronation was founded by Eva Peskin about two days ago. She tells me that its two principles are, "All borders and nations within borders are shams," and "Nationality is fluid and associative." Please direct further questions about this burgeoning republic to Eva. I am sure it will be a winner!!!
13. Republic of New Afrika
The idea of this one is pretty much a Garvey-esque "return to Africa" except OOPS WE JUST MOVED AFRICA ONTO FIVE SOUTHERN U.S. STATES AND WE ALSO DEMAND REPARATIONS. It never really took off, existence-wise.
12. Operation Atlantis
This was a kinda pathetic attempt at starting a libertarian nation on a boat. It sunk in a hurricaine. Libertarians are fucking weird.
11. Republic of Minerva
This was a kinda pathetic attempt at starting a libertarian nation by dumping a bunch of sand in shallow water to make an island. According to some libertarian, "The chief reason that the Minerva project failed was that the libertarians who were involved did not want to fight for their territory." Libertarians are fucking weird.
10. Principality of Freedonia (no relation)
This was a kinda pathetic attempt at starting a libertarian nation in Somaliland. A couple dudes who figured Africa still owed white people a little more showed up and tried to take some land to start a nation. In the ensuing political disruption, at least one Somali was shot and killed.
Libertarians are fucking assholes.
9. The Conch Republic
This one is actually just Key West, Florida. Their mayor declared their seccession in 1982 to protest a new development in law enforcement that harmed their tourism. And about here is when this list starts getting awesome:
"As part of the protest, Mayor Wardlow was proclaimed Prime Minister of the Republic, which immediately declared war against the U.S. (symbolically breaking a loaf of stale Cuban bread over the head of a man dressed in a naval uniform), quickly surrendered after one minute (to the man in the uniform), and applied for one billion dollars in foreign aid." (Wikipedia)
This guy is a friggin' comic genius. It is funny but pedestrian until the foreign aid, where it takes a sudden right turn into inspired.
8. Aerican Empire
This is an entirely joke-nation that lays claim to, among other location, "Chompsville: A square kilometer of territory in Australia near the region of Springvale, Victoria," "Northern Plutopia: The northern half of the dwarf planet Pluto," and "Verden," a completely made-up planet. It celebrates holidays like March 19, "What the Heck is That Day" and August 28, "Significant Historical Events Day."
I want to like the Aerican Empire more than I do, probably because it suffers from a near-terminal case of "trying too hard." Also, unsurprisingly, it is mostly comprised of people who play Warhammer.
This is, quite literally, a country created by a 13-year-old kid as a form of escapism after his mother died. And if that is the saddest thing you've ever read: years later, he attempted to have one of his "citizens" (whom he gained through the internet) thrown out on false charges of domestic abuse, and as a result, most Talossans seceded and created their own, similar micronation. This is pretty much like creating an imaginary friend that ditches you.
6. Gay and Lesbian Kingdom of the Coral Sea Islands
Gayest country ever.
5. Kingdom of Lovely
This is some guy who decided to call his flat in London a nation, and then got the BBC to make a documentary about it. As far as joke-states, the Aecrian Empire could learn a few things from him:
"The country's unit of currency is the Interdependent Occupational Unit (IOU). The currency is based on the phrase "time is money" – IOUs are exchangeable for an amount of the recipient's time, e.g. paying a citizen for 5 minutes of washing up."
"The University of Lovely was the country's first officially recognised educational facility. It offers courses on being lovely and information on what education means to the nation."
Get it, Aecrian Empire? Less is more. But Lovely still isn't the best joke-micronation, that award would certainly go to...
4. Republic of Molossia
Say hello to Mollosian president Kevin Baugh. Kevin Baugh is awesome. The Republic of Molossia is Kevin's house and proprty in Nevada, plus the houses and property of a couple of his friends in California and Pennsylvania. The United States does not recognize Molossia as a country, so Molossia does not recognize the United States. In fact, it basically only recognizes and makes treaties with other micronations.
Officially, Molossia, despite only containing four people, is a republic. However, "due to unrest and the ever-present foreign menace from over the border," Molossia is constantly in a state of martial law that puts all power in Baugh's hands.
The following things are banned in Molossia: firearms, incandescent light bulbs, catfish, onions, walruses, and anything from Texas except Kelly Clarkson.
I love Molossia.
3. The Resilient Rabbit
The Resilient Rabbit is the sovreign microstate upon which Peter and Rob Make Lists of Things declared war two days ago. (We, incidentally, are not a microstate. Work that one out for extra credit.) We then discovered that the Rabbit not only attended Yale's undergraduate college (the reason for our declaration) but also Columbia's law school, which is enough to make us kinfolk and pacify us. Now secure in our love for the Rabbit, this is the only micronation for which we endorse RSS feed subscription and daily readin's, which will keep you updated on all things comedy. Also, seriously, I won free shit from there. Read it and the same might happen to you.
2. Other World Kingdom
In this micronation/BDSM vacation land where women rule men, the highest class of women attain such a class by acquiring male slaves, who have rights "on the level of a normal farm animal."
I have read that sentence about five times and it gets me every time. I think it's the word "normal."
1. Principality of Sealand
Sealand is fucking unreal. If you only read one Wikipedia entry for the rest of your life, make it this one. I will try to summarize it here, but really, every sentence in the history of this place is so amazing, so hilarious, and so life-affirming to me to know that I live in a world where this is not only possible but HAPPENED, that there is no question in my mind that Sealand is the #1 micronation.
In the 1940s, Britain made a weird-lookin' fort out of a pontoon on two hollow towers in international waters. In the 1960s, Paddy Roy Bates started occupying the place for the purpose of pirate radio. When British soldiers came by on unrelated business, Bates' son fired warning shots, claiming they were in his territorial waters and apparently deciding right then that he was on a sovreign state. He never went to court, as it was determined that the fort, now called "Sealand," wasn't under British control.
Later, while Bates was FUCKING ON VACATION, a bunch of civilians staged a hostile takeover of Sealand and HELD HIS SON CAPTIVE. Bates invaded his own country WITH A HELICOPTER!!!!!!!!!!!!! and took it over again. He then charged the guy who led the civilian takeover with treason against Sealand and refused to give him over to any other government until he paid a fine, which he later waived after SEVERAL WEEKS of negotiations.
The sports played on Sealand are soccer and mini-golf.
The owners of Sealand are currently trying to sell it for about a billion dollars.
Sealand is the fucking sweetest place ever.