As I was designing the campaign I decided where the political units were going to be and very, very, very general ideas of what these units were (mainly ideas of racial composition). I then statted them up as characters — straight 3d6 in order. This told me which political units were stronger than others, made wiser decisions, more intelligent decisions, were more robust as a polity, had a greater magical presence, were more mobile in response to threats, etcetera.
The thrust of the remainder of DeForest’s reply dealt with how the random results of this process injected excitement, novelty and creativity into the process. Certainly this is valuable, but it elides another interesting part of the idea, which is that this offers a simple, intuitive scale by which the DM can write up and assess political units in the campaign.
You could probably even utilize the OD&D combat system to resolve conflicts between states. Figure out each state’s class and level, assign hit points and armor class, and treat each combat round as a year. I’m not sure this would be useful, but it would certainly provide an entertaining experiment.