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From "Lesson #5" by Scott Alexander, 9/22/02

"Far off in some godforsaken state like New Mexico or somewhere around there, two guys named Ed Conway and Jason Rhode met in college and became very good friends. They found that both of them shared a love for the works of Nicollo Machiavelli, the Italian political philosopher famous for proclaiming that “the ends justify the means” and that “it is better to be feared than to be loved”. The two decided they would form a country based on his principles – a country which would aptly enough be called Machiavellia. Of course, because of the title of Machiavelli’s book, the leader would of course have to be a Prince. It wasn’t too important which one was the prince, of course, since the whole point was that the other would soon launch a coup. So they decided the matter by arm wrestling. Jason won, and with due fanfare was proclaimed Prince of Machiavellia. He then went off to spend some time in, appropriately enough, Rome. There it might have rested, but for that Conway put “First Minister of the CyberNation of Machiavellia” in his internet signature, and posted on Apolyton. Scott, looking for new recruits, immediately caught it, IMed Conway, and told him to join the micronational community. He did. This was in March."