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Peter Thiel's latest investment: Island

Posted by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 5:30 PM
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Peter Thiel wants an independent island
Wed Aug 17 2011, 12:45

VENTURE CAPITALIST and Paypal investor Peter Thiel is channelling some of his cash into a island paradise governed by its own rules.

The INQUIRER is not one to judge about how other people spend their money, but for now we are filing this under W for whacky or H for Howard Hughes.

According to a profile in the September issue of Details magazine the investor, who also makes an appearance in the film The Social Network and is a Facebook investor, is moving away from technology towards other less-charted waters.

In an interview with the magazine, Thiel said, "We're at this pretty important point in society where we can either find a way to rediscover a frontier, or we're going to be forced to change in a way that's really tough."

One way to change is to opt out, apparently, and Thiel, who appears to be frustrated by the lack of innovation he sees about him, is looking at really big ideas, including the aforementioned island paradise that would be built on a platform in international waters and exist free from the laws, morals and regulations of any other country.

According to Details, which has spoken with the idea man behind the floating island plans, Patri Friedman, a former Google engineer, this project should start small but rapidly scale upwards to support tens of millions of people by 2050. Current plans are aiming at a moveable island for 270 people, which makes us wonder whether Thiel ever watched the TV show Lost.

"The ultimate goal," Friedman said, "is to open a frontier for experimenting with new ideas for government," which again sounds a bit like Lost to us.

Thiel is committed to the plans, and Friedman's Seasteady Institute, to the tune of $1.25m, despite how controversial it sounds.

"When you start a company, true freedom is at the beginning of things," he said. "The United States Constitution had things you could do at the beginning that you couldn't do later. So the question is, can you go back to the beginning of things? How do you start over?"

Maybe you can, if you have the cash to do it. ยต

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by on Aug. 17, 2011 at 5:30 PM
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