There's something to be said for having the initiative and the drive to want to take charge and be a leader, even if it's over a fictional domain. If your visions of power involve declaring your backyard a sovereign state, dressing like a Starfleet captain and demanding everyone treat you like royalty, then creating your own country might be just thing for you, your majesty.
Before you sign your declaration, you should probably survey the competition. You've may have heard of the Principality of Sealand
, but here's a few strange and bizarre micronations
you might not have heard of ...
Grand Duchy of Avram
If Bugs Bunny taught us nothing else, it's that Tasmania must be awesome. It not only produces ravenous, spinning mammals with poor grasp of grammar, it is also the birthplace of John Charlton Rudge, aka John Avram, aka John Charlton His Grace the Most Noble the Duke of Avram. He made his own country and, not content to half-ass it like some people, made his own currency as well.
Despite the fact he tried to escape legal loopholes by saying he wasn't running a bank (he called it a "b_nk"), the Australian government was still unimpressed and confiscated all his pretend money. The government soon learned, however, that a dude who trades pretend money for real money at face value isn't actually doing anything wrong. Thus, six trials and $22 million of the government's money later, Rudge was found not guilty and went back to making his own cash, even minting coins.
Empire of Austenasia
On September 20, 2008, Scotsman (or Scotsboy -- he's 14) Jonathan Austen sent a Declaration of Independence to his Member of Parliament. A couple weeks later he sent one to the Prime Minister of the U.K. A couple months after that he sent one to the Home Office of the U.K. and from then on all the citizens of the Empire were pretty sure they had seceded from Britain. "All the residents" being Jonathan and his dad, "the Empire" being their house.
The Web site for the nation
assures you they are not a joke and that they hope one day to have officially recognized sovereignty under the eyes of the British government, which would make them the first micronation ever to achieve such a feat.
As it stands now, citizens of Austenasia are also British citizens and thus pay taxes and leave the country to attend work and school. The country is more than happy to accommodate tourists if you ask in advance. Odds are they need to vacuum or something before your arrival.
Every so often, a group of somewhat disheveled and mostly homeless artsy people take up squatting in some ramshackle building, but rarely do they declare the block on which they live its own nation. Such was the case when the residents of Freston Road created Frestonia.
City Council in London, England, had plans to redevelop the area, but the 120 or so people squatting in the abandoned houses really didn't want to leave. When the city threatened to evict, the residents opted to declare independence from the U.K. on Halloween 1977.
Frestonia enjoyed a short but remarkable period as its own not-quite-officially recognized nation. They had their own newspaper and postage that was recognized by the Post Office and the Clash even recorded one of their albums at the people's hall.
Word got out about Frestonia and the residents formed a housing co-op, effectively kicking aside their pretend independence and getting back into the fold of society.
By and large, the reasons why people decide to create their own country can best be described as "ridiculous." However, the founding of Kugelmugel, formerly in Vienna, Austria, is not ridiculous in the least. See, Edwin Lipburger built a ball-shaped house and got into a dispute with the local government over the building permits one needs to construct a house that looks like a giant orange. His solution was to encase his orange in barbed wire and declare himself sovereign.
Kugelmugel, which means "ball hill," has its own Web site
despite the fact the entire country is currently vacant. It has existed since the 1980s at the address 2 Anti-Fascism Square. Back then, Lipburger decided that, as his own nation, he didn't have to pay Austrian taxes. This got Lipburger sentenced to prison although the Austrian President pardoned him and spared him hard time, because world leaders have to look out for each other.
Other World Kingdom
The grand failing of most micronations is that the people who found them do so with the express purpose of just having their own regular, boring country to run whilst calling themselves Dukes or Princes or whatever. Nary a mention is made of kinky sex at all. Thankfully, Other World Kingdom took care of that problem.
OWK is basically a BDSM resort in the Czech Republic that claims itself sovereign, has its own currency, court system, police force, passports and probably a large supply of topical creams and wet wipes.
The ruler of OWK is Queen Patricia I who is apparently camera shy as she doesn't actually show her face in any of the images from the nation's pretty much NSFW Web site
. She creates laws and even has her own royal guard which appears to be made up entirely of women who enjoy wearing leather and stilettos.
The laws of the land are detailed on the site
and include the crimes of laziness, unauthorized erections and doubting female superiority. Unsurprisingly there is no official recognition of Other World Kingdom but it does have its own currency that matches U.S. cash dollar for dollar and features images of men being abused by women, so that's something.
How Do You Get Your Own Country?
Well, the short answer is you don't, as no micronation has ever been officially recognized by any government anywhere. But if you feel like it's your lucky day, then you either need to build your own plot of land, be it an island in the middle of nowhere or your own house, and send out letters of independence to whomever it is who will quickly ignore you and continue to consider you a citizen. Just remember that if you pay taxes now, you will still have to pay taxes once you have your own kingdom, lest you find yourself the ruler of your own cell in a federal penitentiary.
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