It seems as if nary a day can go by without another micronationalist attempting to construct yet another micronational organization. In fact, the event occurs with such alarming regularity that the intermicronational community, particularly in the MicroWiki Sector, have taken to referring to the task as “YAMO” – uncreative abbreviation for Yet Another Micronational Organization.
It appears, then, that yet another micronationalist has stepped up to the plate of attempting to succeed where countless others have failed – the United Micronations (a name which has now been used at least nine times according to MicroWiki sources) was established three days ago following a “meeting between the United Workers’ Democratic Republic and the Republic of Greater Sealand” which brought the organization into existence.
There has, of course, already been scepticism. Prince James Frisch of Beacon City, posting on the Reddit announcement about the organization, argued that “There have been many United Micronations before that have failed.” He then went on to question “Why should I believe this one will succeed and not be a YAMO?”
Another micronationalist, a Redditor by the name of Dr_Prof_Ethan, the apparent Premier of Andihce, also made a similar point, referring to the fact that “This is a bit of a repeatedly failed concept, mainly it can’t seem to stay active.”
The Reddit post, however, attempted to allay these concerns by heading them off at the pass.
“A UM organisation that will stay active as if I start to get bored, I will hand over the presidency via an election,” the organization’s progenitor insisted, before asserting “This UM will work.”
Will it work, however? So far, there are three member states, with the Monarchical Republic of Booltania having joined yesterday to add to the slim collection of people willing to give the cookie-cutter UN organization a chance.
There are three key issues relating to the creation and maintenance of these organizations.
The first is the simplest, and it relates to the activity of member states. The failure of many United Micronations attempts has been the lack of interest over time from member nations. It befell numerous UMs, and even, in the end, led the Nollandish Confederacy, a group beleaguered by both bureaucracy and numerous elections, to eventually succumb.
Without a binding purpose, without a reason for members to continue to come back, they simply won’t – and this is a key part of why these organizations generally don’t work.
The second issue is more endemic with the nature of the UM, and follows on from the point made just now: the organization needs to actually have a binding purpose that works coherently and allows a wide scope of things the organization can actually do without at the same time infringing to an unnecessary extent in the domestic affairs of member states (something many micronationalists are exceedingly averse to, and which the GUM, currently in the process of being restored, is apparently attempting to strike a balance with).
Many organizations bill themselves as dealing with some combination of micronational peace or promotion of foreign relations, and this has a very limited scale. There’s nothing that the organization can actually do within these parameters that is both reasonably limited in domestic interference and actually is interesting enough to keep people returning to the fold.
The third issue is one that budding United Micronation-founders can ultimately do nothing about, and that is a cynicism embedded in the community itself. This particular cenario is one that has been repeated time and again, and the constant influx of new UMs that do exactly the same as previous incarnations of the same concept don’t help the perception of the community of organizations of this kind being unnecessary and untenable.
Given the history, it is unsurprising that micronationalists are duly cynical about this sort of thing – the problem being that this creates a somewhat paradoxical, “catch-22” feedback loop of impossibility. Without the “Old Guard” of nations supporting the organization, it will lack the gravitas, support, experience and ultimately momentum to project it into a fully-fledged project. However, given the swathes of UMs that have tried and failed to make it in the past, the same “Old Guard” are unlikely to pledge any degree of support to organizations that attempt this and, thus, these organizations will ultimately fall by the wayside, further perpetuating the idea within the micronational community that the concept itself is inherently flawed.
Will we see a functioning, successful UM organization in the future? Perhaps. Negotiations within the GUM Quorum are underway to frame a new Charter for an organization of that type and, with the necessary balance of old and new micronations, it could potentially last – but, of course, it entirely remains to be seen.