Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘Calexit’

Secession Studies – Taki’s Magazine – Taki’s Magazine

Posted by M. C. on March 6, 2020

So which side would the U.S. military tend to support in a battle of secessionism vs. nationalism? My impression is that the U.S. military very much enjoys representing the strongest, most ass-kicking country on earth and intends to keep the USA that way.

And my guess is, military men like things just the way they are and have no intention of weakening America on the world stage by allowing petty politicians to split up the most awe-inspiring military in human history.

Any appeal to arms puts the final decision in the hands of the warriors. And they are nationalists who value, above all, the unity of the nation.

So, secession is not going to happen.

Frank H. Buckley’s highbrow yet quick and lively new book American Secession comes with the foreboding subtitle The Looming Threat of a National Breakup, but the conservative George Mason U. law professor and Trump family adviser is sanguine.

In Buckley’s view, a Trump reelection combined with Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death might trigger a Calexit movement by aggrieved Californians (a state where Hillary won by 4.3 million votes, while she lost by 1.5 million in the other 49 states) enraged at having to share a country with Trump voters.

Or perhaps the deplorables, offended by the Democrats’ smug “that’s not who we are” rhetoric, will call a new Constitutional Convention (which would require only 34 state legislatures) at which who knows what might happen… The last one, in 1787, tore up the existing Articles of Confederation and invented a federal system.

And would the U.S. breaking into two or more chunks be so bad? Buckley writes:

We’re overly big, one of the biggest countries in the world. Smaller countries are happier and less corrupt. They’re less inclined to throw their weight around militarily, and they’re freer. If there are advantages to bigness, the costs exceed the benefits. Bigness is badness.

Born in Saskatoon, Buckley (no relation to William F.) imports the Canadian assumption that territorial unions, like political parties, come and go. Canada evolved into independence from Britain over a long, mostly peaceful expanse of time. Newfoundland didn’t join Canada until 1949, and the people of Quebec very nearly voted to secede in 1995.

In the U.S., however, the idea of secession has been off the table since roughly the Battle of Gettysburg. Likewise, the same two parties that led the United States into disaster in the Civil War are still utterly dominant here.

But growing bad blood between the two American parties now makes a territorial split-up seem conceivable once again. After all, the United States occupies a huge expanse of longitude and latitude. Perhaps America is just too big these days for 330 million residents to get along?

In his breezy style, Buckley makes the case that a geographic split, such as that of the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1992, wouldn’t be so bad, before finally recommending as a compromise the kind of super-federalist “home rule” that Britain granted Canada and that Prime Minister Gladstone wished to offer Ireland in the 1880s.

On the other hand, would any kind of regional division actually cure what currently ails America during the Great Awokening?

“Growing bad blood between the two American parties now makes a territorial split-up seem conceivable once again.”

For instance, perhaps the worst cause of the recent unhappiness explosion in the U.S. since the Obama reelection campaign revived identity politics in 2012 is the much-exacerbated war between the sexes. But how would secession solve the problem of men and women getting on each other’s nerves? Nobody besides Andrea Dworkin ever thought a single-sex country would solve anything.

Similarly, red and blue American states are divided less by race—while California is now only 36.8 percent white, Texas isn’t far behind at just 41.5 percent white—than by white vs. white animus.

And are Americans most irritated by their fellow Americans whom they encounter in real life, or by those they clash with in cyberspace?

And if they divided up into separate geographic countries, would they then cease taunting each other online? I doubt it: The truth is, it’s fun.

Similarly, is the threat of online censorship worse from the U.S. government or from woke multinational corporations?

If America split up, wouldn’t money continue to pour into New York and San Francisco? But then the hinterlanders couldn’t even elect a Trump as revenge upon the coastal elites.

And then there are the practical questions of how to divide up a huge country, ones that Buckley skims over.

For instance, what currency would successor states use? Would it be wise to give up the mighty dollar? But if not, how would the dollar be administered without a political union? The history of the Euro is not encouraging.

Note the hard-earned wisdom of a man who lived through the Eurasian equivalent of what Buckley blithely considers for America:

Above all, we should acknowledge that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a major geopolitical disaster of the century…. Tens of millions of our co-citizens and co-patriots found themselves outside Russian territory. Moreover, the epidemic of disintegration infected Russia itself. —Vladimir Putin

For example, where, exactly, do you draw the border? Buckley’s book only features one map, showing the Republican-Democrat divide in the 2016 election at the county level. But it’s hard to imagine how to draw new national boundaries that would divide leftist urban centers from their own rightist exurbs.

In contrast, Southern secession in 1861 was over slavery, which led to a fairly linear border between the North and the South. The reason was because slavery was profitable at more southern latitudes where white labor was debilitated by tropical fevers. But slavery was unprofitable at more northern latitudes where blacks tended to die of respiratory infections. So, seven deep Southern slave states seceded soon after the election of Abraham Lincoln, four middle-tier slave states followed after Fort Sumter, and four Northern slave states stayed in the Union.

But today’s political divides are largely driven by real estate prices, which are related to population density and the proximity of deepwater coastlines on the Atlantic, Pacific, and Great Lakes.

Inland metropolitan areas such as Dallas and Atlanta can expand 360 degrees into suburbs, so their home prices are lower than in cities on deep water, such as San Francisco, Chicago, and New York, where suburban expansion is severely limited by geography. Thus, family formation is more affordable in inland America, so the traditional family-values party is more popular there.

(A couple of exceptions to this rule: the shores of the Gulf Coast are not densely populated due to the hurricane threat. And inland Denver is turning into a deep blue city because of the high real estate prices imposed by the Rockies just west of the city.)

An obvious problem for secessionists of either extreme is that the blue and red map is complicated, typically being blue in cities and red in their exurbs. For example, in purple Wisconsin, Milwaukee and Madison are highly Democratic, and most of the rest of the state is Republican.

Dividing along partisan lines of geography would create an extremely complicated map with national borders typically drawn a few dozen miles outside of civic centers, inconveniencing surrounding farmers selling their produce in the big cities and urbanites wanting to drive out to the countryside to fish or golf. Millions of commuters would end up in a different country from their current jobs.

Just dividing along state lines would split Coastal America into two or more countries because the conservative Great Plains run from the Mexican border in Texas to the Canadian border in North Dakota.

Moreover, whites tend to become Democrats or Republicans depending upon whether they live in cities or the countryside. So even if Democrats ideologically cleansed Republicans from the rural Northeast and Republicans drove out Democrats from the urban Sunbelt, their descendants who settled conquered enemy territory would start turning into the enemy.

And then there’s the question of what to do with American military assets, such as the U.S. Navy. The divvying up of the old Soviet Black Sea Fleet between Ukraine and Russia has proven enormously contentious. In one example of the kind of ignominious incidents that happen when a superpower breaks up, Ukraine sold an unfinished Soviet aircraft carrier to a shady Chinese businessman who turned it over to the Chinese navy.

Russia confiscated much of the Ukrainian fleet in 2014 when it seized the Crimea peninsula and its main port of Sevastopol.

Consider America’s 11 big aircraft carriers, the foremost sword of American might in conventional conflicts. The U.S. owns 11 of the world’s 24 aircraft carriers, including all 11 largest, and almost three-fourths of the world’s carrier planes. The U.S. has more than an order of magnitude more aircraft-carrier-based warplanes than any other single country.

Five carriers are currently based in Norfolk, Va., one across the James River in Newport News, one in Bremerton on Puget Sound, three in San Diego, and one in Japan.

As of the 2018 election, all 10 of the American-stationed carriers were based in blue states. But I would think that an (ostensibly) Inland America might insist upon, say, taking the Norfolk base and the San Diego base (a Pacific port is a very good thing to own), giving it seven aircraft carriers, while leaving Newport News, Puget Sound, and Japan’s base with their four aircraft carriers to Coastal America.

The notion of splitting up the U.S. along the James River was introduced by the liberal Washington Post columnist Harold Meyerson on the 150th anniversary of Gettysburg in 2013 in his column “Start the Border Fence in Norfolk, VA.”

But this would require breaking the states of Virginia and California into separate countries. San Diego is a little like Sevastopol, a Russian navy town that was not happy being stranded in Ukraine. Similarly, San Diego, an old U.S. Navy town, is traditionally more conservative and nationalistic than the rest of coastal California. But that’s only relatively speaking: San Diego County went heavily for Hillary in 2016.

For red America to extend a land bridge to San Diego would make it a serious two-ocean country. But it would have two downsides.

First, red America would take on an even larger border with Mexico, while insulating blue America from Latin American immigration.

Second, Californians might object violently to this intrusion into their state. And this could lead to war, just as the breakup of the Soviet Union has led to fighting in Russian Chechnya, Transnistria, Nagorno-Karabakh, Georgia, and Ukraine.

Buckley argues that it’s not 1861 anymore. We are now a more aged and comfortable society, so nobody would rush to war. Buckley writes:

Finally, there’s the president. I don’t think we’d see one who’d want to send in the Army to invade a state. Were he of the other party, he might even look at the electoral map and say, “Erring sister, depart in peace.”

For example, Tory prime minister David Cameron granted Scotland an independence referendum in 2014, figuring that if Scotland left it would take many anti-Tory votes with it.

Further, many red Americans think they would win in a fight. As Dave Barry wrote in 1985:

The South has 96 percent of the nation’s armed pickup trucks, whereas the North mainly has Fitness Centers, so it would be over in minutes.

In truth, however, the likely answer to the question of “Who would be willing to fight?” is the military servicemen who signed up to fight for the USA.

So which side would the U.S. military tend to support in a battle of secessionism vs. nationalism? My impression is that the U.S. military very much enjoys representing the strongest, most ass-kicking country on earth and intends to keep the USA that way.

So, if the politicians can’t agree on an amicable Czech-Slovak-style split-up, and the obvious controversies over who gets, say, the port of San Diego suggest that they won’t, then the effective decision would wind up in the hands of the hard men of the military.

And my guess is, military men like things just the way they are and have no intention of weakening America on the world stage by allowing petty politicians to split up the most awe-inspiring military in human history.

Any appeal to arms puts the final decision in the hands of the warriors. And they are nationalists who value, above all, the unity of the nation.

So, secession is not going to happen.

Be seeing you


The New America




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Secession fever spikes in five states as conservatives seek to escape blue rule

Posted by M. C. on February 21, 2020

You’ve got Oregonians seeking to cascade into Idaho, Virginians who identify as West Virginians, Illinoians fighting to escape Chicago, Californians dreaming of starting a 51st state, and New Yorkers who think three states are better than one.

Separation fever is sweeping the nation as quixotic but tenacious bands of frustrated rural dwellers, suburbanites and conservatives seek to break free from states with legislatures increasingly controlled by liberal big cities and metropolitan strongholds.

“Oregon is controlled by the northwest portion of the state, Portland to Eugene. That’s urban land, and their decisions are not really representing rural Oregon,” said Mike McCarter, president of Move Oregon’s Border for a Greater Idaho. “They have their agenda and they’re moving forward with it, and they’re not listening to us.”

In Virginia, the newly elected Democratic majority’s progressive legislation on issues such as gun rights has spurred “Vexit,” or “Virginia exit,” a campaign to merge right-tilting rural counties into neighboring West Virginia that organizers say has the potential to catch fire nationwide.

“To be honest, if this works — you’ve got a lot of red areas in this country that are totally dominated by a blue metropolis,” said Vexit2020 leader Rick Boyer, a former member of the Campbell County Board of Supervisors. “If it works in Virginia, there’s no reason it can’t reshape the political map.”

Such campaigns can only be described longshots — no state has split off since West Virginia was carved from Virginia in 1863 — but the growing interest comes as those living outside cities wrestle with the consequences of the 1964 Supreme Court decision in Reynolds v. Sims.

The ruling established the principle of “one man, one vote,” effectively eliminating state legislative districts apportioned by county or geography instead of population, which hobbled in the influence of smaller and rural communities.

Illinois state Rep. Brad Halbrook, who has introduced a resolution to spin off Chicago and declare it the 51st state, said that “downstate voices are simply not being heard because we’ve been forced into this democracy that’s concentrated power into a small geographical area of the state.”

“Sen. Everett Dirksen said that with Reynolds v. Sims, the major metropolitan areas, the large population centers, are going to control the rest of the state, and that’s what’s happened with Illinois, California, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, New York,” the Republican Halbrook said.

He acknowledged that the bill isn’t going anywhere without a popular uprising, and that’s where G.H. Merritt comes in. She heads New Illinois, a grassroots nonprofit seeking to kick Chicago out of Illinois using the Article IV process, which requires the consent of the legislature and Congress.

“We have operations in 49 of 102 counties,” Ms. Merritt said. “We kind of compare it to the way Solidarity worked in Poland, where the people just decided they were done and transitioned from a communist government to a democracy without having a civil war.”

Hers isn’t the only secession group in the Land of Lincoln. Illinois Separation has taken a different route with county ballot referendums that instruct local officials to “correspond” with Cook County about “the possibility of separating from the City of Chicago.”

So far the group has qualified three measures for the March 17 primary ballot and nine for the Nov. 3 general election, according to a spokesperson.

In New York, Divide New York State has for years championed the idea of three autonomous self-governing regions, eliminating the need for Congress to create separate states. More ambitious is New California, which seeks to create a 51st state, and Calexit, which wants to make California its own nation.

‘Extremely unlikely’

In Oregon, three counties have agreed to place a measure on the ballot instructing local officials to begin negotiations to “relocate the Oregon/Idaho border to make this county a county of Idaho,” described as a border readjustment and not secession.

“This proposal is different from secession because it is simply a shift in borders that does not affect the balance of power in the US Senate,” said the Greater Idaho’s petition. “It does not create a new state or increase the number of states.”

So far several Oregon Republicans have endorsed the idea, including Senate Republican Leader Herman Baertschiger, who said in an email to CNN that he would “welcome the idea to serve on the Greater Idaho legislature!”

Also on board is Idaho Gov. Brad Little.

“They’d like to have a little more autonomy and a little more control and a little more freedom, and I fully understand that,” the Republican governor told “Fox & Friends.”

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice has put out the welcome mat, and a state concurrent resolution inviting Virginia counties to cross over recently cleared a House committee and enjoys “overwhelming support,” said its sponsor, Republican state Rep. Gary Howell.

“The big difference is this is the first time another state has made the offer to take them. That’s never happened,” said Mr. Howell, adding, “There’s been very little pushback. The resolution I like to say has tri-partisan support because not only does it have Republicans and Democrats, it also has our lone independent on it.”

So far, however, blue states have shown little interest in parting with their taxpayers or electoral votes. Gov. Ralph Northam’s spokeswoman has dismissed the hubbub as election-year politics, while Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said last year that “I don’t have any concerns of any secession effort actually taking hold.”

The idea fell flat at a recent meeting of the Tazewell County [Virginia] Board of Supervisors, said chairman Charles Stacy, who added that the board “caught hell” in the media for even discussing the proposal.

“There were a few citizens that showed up that thought that was a good idea, but it overwhelmingly had zero support from anybody in the government of Tazewell County,” Mr. Stacy said. “The reality of it is, something like that is not even within the purview of the Board of Supervisors. That would be a legislative function between the two states to change their territories.”

Adam W. Dean, history professor at the University of Lynchburg, said the idea of moving Virginia counties to West Virginia is legal under Article IV, Section III of the U.S. Constitution, but gaining the approval of both state legislatures and Congress would be “extremely unlikely.”

While West Virginia did split from Virginia during the Civil War, Mr. Dean said the move was “legally dubious at the time and only approved because of the exigency of civil war.”

Instead of trying to rearrange state borders or form a new state, foes argue that disaffected residents should simply try to win back the state legislature, but Mr. Boyer said that in states like Virginia with growing urban population centers, it’s a losing battle.

“The demographics in Virginia are not good,” Mr. Boyer said. “The federal government employee base is more and more of our voting population in Virginia every year. Northern Virginia is more and more dominant every year, and the giant rest of red Virginia is overwhelmed by blue Northern Virginia. It’s a losing demographic war as Virginia is currently constituted.”

West Virginia’s Howell argued that liberal state Democratic legislators in Virginia should seize the opportunity to unload their “deplorables.”

“If they get rid of the ones that are supposedly their problem, they could have a super-majority with what’s left in their legislature,” Mr. Howell said. “So they could pass the liberal utopia that they want.”

Be seeing you

Which States Referred to Slavery in Their Cause of Secession?








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Calif. To Consider Enacting Statewide Sanctuary

Posted by M. C. on January 31, 2017

As long as Calexit is part of the deal I say go for it

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What Trump’s Wall Says to the World – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on January 28, 2017

It is that they are changing our country. They are changing who we are.
We haven’t heard from La Raza lately. You know, the folks that want to retake the US Southwest and give it back to Mexico. Who knows what would happen to CA after Calexit.

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