People should be free to create their own nations based on their personal beliefs and attitudes, and then identify like minded individuals.
The central theme running through human history is freedom, specifically the gradual but inevitable progression toward the ultimate emancipation of the individual. We're not there yet, because the ability of each of us to conduct our lives according to our own rules and beliefs is subject to many restrictions, including those imposed by religious, social, and governmental institutions.
It's this fundamental battle between the needs of the individual versus the demands of the collective as expressed through these institutions that provides the ever-present backdrop to our interactions with others, and with the powers of society. Human beings live within "countries" defined by geographic boundaries, each subject to various forms of governance and religious and cultural institutions. Being a member of a particular country is, however, largely an accident of birth - the vast majority of people spend their lives living with governmental/economic systems (and religious/cultural systems) that are not a matter of choice (i.e., they succumb to a sort of geographic tyranny). Other than a minority of individuals who are politically active at any given time, people generally simply work with what they are handed in terms of governmental/cultural/economic system (i.e., they're succumbing to a sort of tyranny of passivity.)
Patriotism becomes the means by which people express their attachment to their notion of their country - but two individuals could live in the same country, and each consider himself patriotic, and yet have wildly divergent beliefs and opinions about virtually everything of importance.
With the advent of the internet, the time has come to end this tyranny of geography/passivity. I propose the way to do this is via www.inations.com, a website that gives people the ability to create nations of their own.
Closing Statement from Joe Crandall
Great conversation (although I tip my hat to Colleen Steen as "best in show.") To those who take umbrage that I appear to be seeking the perpetuation of the "nation-state" in the online environment, I suggest you first visit iNations (www.inations.com) and start going through the questions; and second, I invite you to really think about what the impact of iNations would be if (when?) it becomes an accepted practice for how people express themselves and interrelate.
And a note for Mr. Cop: I propose there's a big difference between mindLESS flag-waving and mindFUL communication and interrelation with other people on this planet. Tyranny flourishes where people do NOT debate the "big" questions, and iNations provides not only the forum where everyone can do this, but the means as well. Perhaps our visions for the future of humanity are not so dissimilar after all?