Tuesday, November 19, 2013


After seeing this post about owning a private island (on the cheap, no less!--although it assumes you want to live in Nova Scotia and/or like living in a fetid swamp), I got to thinking...what would I have on my own island?

  • My own government--that's right, why not? Once anyone gets their hands on their own island, I pretty much assume that this is going to mean an immediate declaration of independence from any foreign powers. What's the point of having your own island if you don't?
  • A new constitution. The United States Constitution is awesome and all that, but I wouldn't mind making a few...adjustments. Namely, immigration policy, meaning the only immigrants are the ones who would vote for me. I suppose, technically, I should put "votes" in quotes since everyone involves knows full well that it will be a sloppily-policed oligarchy. Also, I should probably add an article about how people who use the speakerphone in an open office should be thrown in jail, and people who use gas stations to circumvent red lights should be shot on sight.
  • My own name. I'm partial to Harkleland, but I'm open to suggestions. The Federal Republic of Crank, perhaps?
  • A National Day. Sort of like the Fourth of July, only I get to pick the date. Might as well make it my birthday, and then move Labor Day to May 1st so we can dispense with the pretense that it's anything more than Commie Day. My National Day will be celebrated by playing board games, eating pulled pork sandwiches, and buying shoes at 20% off. We'll still set off fireworks, because that's the sort of thing you do on a national day of celebration.
  • My own flag. It will probably be either an art deco profile of Ayn Rand or the Team Fortress Logo. Let's not kid ourselves; Harkleland is basically going to be the nation-state equivalent of fanboy XBox achievements and Facebook "Pages I've Liked."
  • If we are declaring ourselves sovereign, though, we'll sadly have to have some sort of military to fend off the superpowers. I suppose we can scoop up some SAMs on the Russian black market (or Saudi, I'm not picky) and recruit some of those badass chicks who work for the Israeli Defense Forces. I don't know about you, but I'm sleeping good knowing that's what is protecting me.
  • My own national anthem. I'd probably want a custom job, but I'll be happy as long as it sounds more or less like a cross between Green Grass and High Tides by the Outlaws and Sons and Daughters by the Decemberists.
  • A health care voucher system. Hey, this is my fantasy. 
  • I am assuming that my island will have no natural resources--I wouldn't be getting it on the cheap otherwise, now, would I? So I'd have to come up with a decent economic plan on how to exploit the opportunity. So far I've whittled it down to: Online Gambling, Offshore Bank Accounts, Customer Service, and Political Asylum For Rich People. Chances are it will be a combination of them all.
  • We'll also have to have some sort of tourist trade. Amusement parks and golf courses are always good, but I suspect that real estate is going to be at a premium, so we may have to be creative. I understand that ecotourists love throwing money at stupid stuff, so maybe we can train some catfish to jump around like dolphins and see if we can get them on the endangered list. Barring that, just open up the kegs and host a spring break reality TV show. Live from Harkeland!
  • A nation-state isn't a nation-state without a state-of-the-art intelligence service. And how! Nowadays, you don't even need gray old dudes in trench coats tailing the reds or smuggling yellowcake up their hoo-holes. You can bribe some greasy hacker with Raspberry Zingers and industrial-grade NoDoz (the Harkleland FDA isn't very thorough, except when it comes to accepting money to let unsafe over-the-counter drugs on the market) to sit in a room. He can play KOTOR all he wants, except for the forty hours a week he (or she, I'm not sexist, but, c'mon) has to dig up stuff with which to blackmail major world leaders. It doesn't have to be much as long as one of them has nukes.
  • Finally, a private island isn't worth a thing unless there's a gloriously ostentatious statue of my likeness in the middle of the whole place.If there's one way to make a private island truly private, it's to scare away the ne'er-do-wells and government spooks with my cranky mug staring down at them.
Update: My friend Louie, inspired by my Rand vs. Lenin statue proposal, submitted to me this artistic representation. Caution: there is a bit of nudity, but it's classy, objectivist nudity:

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