Friday, February 29, 2008

The Presidential Election

The Ohio blogosphere has been abuzz with the relative merits of Hillary ("Brass Knuckles") Clinton vs. Barack ("The Audacity of Inexperience") Obama. Matt Cember expressed our opinion a few weeks ago. Seems to us that the only sensible stand for a secessionist is to let the unionists crown their Emperor, uh, President. I would, however, encourage all Ohioans to vote on Tuesday, March 4, for all of the other offices and issues on the ballot.

Pressing family business has prevented me from updating The Ohio Republic in the last week, and is likely to keep me off for another week or two; but please be assured (as the Gubernator once said), "I'll be back!"

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Losing touch with reality usually is not my cup of tea, but this well-researched piece by Ron Suskind, formerly of the Wall Street Journal, caught my eye. It seems that the Bush Administration willingly admitted that the United States is an empire as long ago as 2004. The staffers also admit that they don't like to learn from history.

Well, neocons, you have a choice. You can learn a gentle lesson from history now; or let it give you a wallop when you least expect it.

(Thanks to Rebellion for bringing this to my attention).

Monday, February 18, 2008

Kosovo succeeds and secedes!

Having backed Kosovan secession (new Kosova flag at right), how will the United States and the European Union justify resistance to secession within their own boundaries without appearing hypocritical? More on D.C. hypocrisy, from Rebellion.

This is a particularly difficult question for Europe, with the imminent possibility of Belgium dividing into Flemish and Wallonian states, and Scotland breaking from the United Kingdom, being the most prominent among many others.

Friday, February 15, 2008

The writers' strike ends

Now we may resume our regularly-scheduled programming.

If V. I. Lenin had lived in our day, he might have changed his dictum on religion to read, "Television is the opiate of the people."

Television and multiple automobiles in each household have destroyed community (and with it, for many people, any real meaning in life). Reducing our use of each will help us rebuild community and learn how we can make life better, not just for ourselves, but for others around us.

Vermont secessionism: Going down in flames?

It appears that some of my earlier posts exaggerated the impact that the Second Vermont Republic and related organizations have had on Vermonters. John Curran of the Associated Press reports* that independence activists failed to secure enough signatures to place the independence issue in even one town in that State.

The Second Vermont Republic had planned to place the issue on the agendas of all 200 town meetings this year. A banquet of that organization held January 15 attracted only 20 people, some of whom were guests from the League of the South. Additional information is available at Vermont Secession, a site that has carefully followed the Vermont independence movement and has been highly critical of it.

Independence will be a hard sell for most Americans. Airily stating lofty ideals won't cut it. In Ohio, independence will come only when (and if), we persuade citizens that there is a practical advantage -- that independence will benefit the Ohio economy, keep us out of foreign wars, and will safeguard our freedom. It also means that we must choose our friends carefully; and if necessary, not at all.

* as posted in the Barre-Montpelier (Vt.) Times-Argus.

Monday, February 11, 2008

You know your empire's collapsing when ...

... Middlebury Institute Director Kirkpatrick Sale (left) can deliver an entire speech on the subject to the Second Vermont Republic January 15. I am not sure about some of his numbers (the $50 trillion debt seems awfully high, even as a combination of governmental, corporate, and personal debt), but he combines a deep understanding of history with an ability to relate it to our current situation. The speech has been published as Paper VIII in the Middlebury Institute series.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Update on the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Act

Back in December, I sent a letter to Ohio's U.S. Senators urging them to oppose the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Act on the grounds that it would excessively restrict the Constitutional rights of American dissenters. This letter was reproduced in The Ohio Republic as a post December 4.

Sen. Voinovich sent me a response January 14, which is included with Sen. Brown's as a comment to my original post. I appreciate the length and detail of his response; however, it was not any more reassuring than Sen. Brown's.

The bill has been recast as S. 1959, and remains in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. If you have not written to Sen. Brown or Sen. Voinovich expressing concern about this bill's investigatory provisions, it is not too late.

Ohio’s Senators may be reached by e-mail at:
George Voinovich:

Sherrod Brown:

Do you blog on politics in Ohio?

If so, come on and join the Carnival. The Carnival of Ohio Politics is always looking for new talent, for its weekly digest of the Ohio political blogosphere, and it gives your blog great exposure! Just send the editor a brief paragraph listing up to three of your best posts in the last week.

If you don't blog, remember that we do keep the Carnival of Ohio Politics as one of our links on the right side of this page.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Gov. Strickland takes on the Feds again!

Governor Ted Strickland told newspaper reporters and editors on Thursday that part of Ohio's economic problem originated in Washington and elsewhere. As reported by John McCarthy at the Associated Press*, Gov. Strickland "blamed budget problems in Ohio on the skyrocketing price of oil, mortgage foreclosures and a national economy that has nose-dived over the past year. 'We are paying the price in Ohio for the debacle that is Washington, D.C.,' Strickland said."

The article notes that letters from Gov. Strickland requesting help from both of Ohio's U.S. Senators and U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have elicited little response. It is worth noting that, like the Governor, Sen. Sherrod Brown and Speaker Pelosi are Democrats.

This silence should come as no surprise. The Ohio Republic recently cited the role of Federal unfunded mandates and budget cuts to the State of Ohio in aggravating the State's budgetary problem.**

My purpose is not to boast that the Governor agrees with this blog; but to show the reader that his statements, as well as ours, are gradually building a strong case for independence from the United States.

* As posted by MyFox Cleveland.
** Another, unrelated, example of the Feds being against Ohio is their opposition to expanding the Children's SCHIP program (Dec. 21).

Thursday, February 7, 2008

No One For President

It’s “Election Year” again, and my fellow Ohioans are all quite distracted by the gaudy and glorified process of choosing which candidate their “Party” will endorse for the lofty office of President of the United Stated of America. Well, on behalf of The Ohio Secessionist Party [*not a real political party] I would like to officially nominate our candidate for 2008: No One.

We would like to point out that, of all the candidates this year, No One is qualified to hold the office of President, and that it is assured that No One will treat the Oath of Office with the greatest of reverence. No One takes clear and firm stands on the most important issues: No One will end the War against Iraq immediately, and No One has a clear and concise plan to restore prosperity to our failing economy. No One can honestly claim to be free of the influence of the international banking cartel. But most of all, No One truly embodies the hopes and dreams of the people of Ohio to make a better future for themselves.

Since, as a political party [*not a real political party] formed on the basis of Ohio’s independence, it is only logical that we should endorse No One for this office, I now ask my fellow Ohioans to be sure to write in “No One” as candidate for President when they receive their ballots in November, as a show of support for their State’s Rights.

(Paid for by the Citizens for a Free Ohio, No One For President Committee) [*not a real organization]

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The state of the State

Back in December, Roberto Alvarez-Galloso asked me what Ohio could do to sustain itself in preparation for independence. I said that the most important thing the government and people of Ohio can do is to begin thinking like an independent state.

Today, Gov. Strickland (right) began thinking like the leader of an independent nation by emphasizing what we as Ohioans can do to build lasting prosperity. By ourselves. He even noted that if Ohio were an independent nation, that our economy would rank 26th of all nations. He drew on our pioneer heritage, our practicality, and our creativity.

- "The state of the State is resolute. We are challenged, but will not back down."
- "Ohio will be first among its peers, and a competitor among all nations."

His speech displayed an understanding of the overall public interest that has been sorely lacking from American political discourse, and he addressed three core issues that are on everyone's mind: extending access to health care, improving education, and rebuilding our economy.

Bold new initiatives were proposed -- the boldest of which probably was the "Senior to Sophomore Program" that will allow academically qualified high school seniors to skip their senior year at high school and enroll as a college freshman, tuition-free for that one year. Another is a carefully-targeted $1.7 billion bond issue ("every dollar to be audited by the independently-elected Auditor of State") for infrastructure, to support new industries built around renewable resources and biomedicine, to restore downtowns and brownfields in our cities -- providing us with immediate jobs and opportunities.

I shall not go into the details, which are easily obtainable elsewhere (here is the full text). It was an inspiring speech, evocative of Franklin D. Roosevelt (we must not be afraid of taking risks and trusting each other) and Gov. James A. Rhodes in his emphasis on jobs.

The speech was worthy of the President of a great nation, which I hope he will one day become.

Our "allies"

I am at the library today catching up on my Internet activities. I posted a comment to the end of the discussion "League of the South: Learn to Use P.R.!" that summarizes my take [which remains favorable] on their organization eloquently. I won't be interested in receiving mail from them... but I may still purchase a Confederate Silver Dollar with my tax return! «laugh»
I am more intrigued with the issue of sovereignty as it applies to the indigenous peoples. I frequently infuriate both the "white supremacists" and the "black supremacists" with my views that if anyone ought to get "reparations" for the actions of our ancestors, it should be the Native Americans! Like so many young white people educated in public schools, I find that I don't really know anything about the indigenous tribes. But perhaps I need to begin educating myself quickly, because it may be well for us to make an effort to reach out to tribes native (or formerly native) to Ohio and make a space for them. (A real space, not a crappy rez on land nobody else wants.)

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Budgetary Bush-whacking

Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Niles) has put up some interesting figures that show how the President's proposed Federal budget will reduce expenditures for Ohio by nearly $223 million in Fiscal Year 2009. And this does not include the unfunded mandates I discussed last week!

Republicans ought to feel thoroughly cheated by this Administration. Our economic situation is grave, and getting worse, but the President whose election was supposedly vouchsafed in Ohio is biting hard one of the hands that fed him.

It's almost as though Washington thinks we're not Americans. Maybe we shouldn't be...

My thanks to the Buckeye State Blog for bringing Rep. Ryan's statistics to my attention.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Can we talk?

Richard Davis at Vermont Commons raises an interesting question. What if we could start a statewide conversation on just what it is we, the people, want out of government? Mr. Davis's example has to do with health care. What would government's role in a health care system be? Would we pay higher taxes to support it if we knew that we would not risk bankruptcy to pay medical bills? It is a thought-provoking piece.

How should we start this conversation, and where should it lead? Send me your comments!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Enjoy the Super Bowl!

Whether you watch the Super Bowl for the game, the commercials, or the halftime show (all of the above or not at all), use this weekend as an opportunity to build community. Buy some soup, subs, or pizza from a church or community organization in your neighborhood. If not available, then buy a pizza or subs from a local pizzeria instead of a national chain. (For what it's worth, my all-time favorite pizza is the Topper, from Kraus' Pizza in Canton -- I get it as often as I can when I go up there).