Saturday, March 12, 2011

Is secession viable?

Mark Vogl at The Nolan Chart thinks so. Now, note two things: (1) His are not the typical so-called "neo-Confederate" arguments, and (2) He claims to be a conservative, not a libertarian. His arguments are primarily economic ones:
[F]or the moment, just to get to the economics of secession, let’s assume that peaceful secession of a state is a right.  What would be the economic impact of secession on the state, and on the federal government be?

If a state were to secede, the federal government would lose all the revenue brought in through federal taxation in that state.  But it would also lose all the costs associated with federal spending in that state, with the exception of federal retirements and social security.  Of course, it’s possible the feds would attempt to block those payments, but one would have to ask, would they block all monies going out of what remained in the union...whether those checks went to a seceded state or Mexico and Germany?

The residents of the seceded state would lose the federal jobs, and the jobs funded by the federal trough.
No question there would be economic disruption on both sides. But in the long run there would be one less level of government for the residents of the seceded state.  One less group of people the special interests could sack.

The special interests and power groups of Washington, New York and California would see their influence reduced considerably. Instead of directing change through DC, they would have to work [through] 50 different states!  The people of each state would become a special interest in and of themselves.*

Secession has another aspect all together. Should states actually have the right to leave the union  peacefully, the power of the federal government to impose its will would be dramatically and permanently reduced.  If the Supreme Court had to include in its consideration how the separate would react to their decisions, they could not expect to impose decisions like Roe v. Wade or Gay marriage. Controversial, undecided questions would have to be left to the respective states...which is EXACTLY what the Founding Fathers intended.

An accepted right of secession might actually strengthen the union by introducing the idea of real limits on power at the federal level and mor work towards compromise and diversity in dealing with issues.

At a time when globalism has been imposed on us, and the threat of even another layer of governance and taxation (the United Nations) rests just over the horizon, the natural counter is a resurgence of the right of secession.

Are you anti American if you believe in secession? I would argue quite the contrary. American is as much a state of mind as it is a citizenship.  America is about its founding philosophies; Christianity, republican - democracy, and the free market and capitalism, plus an appreciation for the land that is America.  It is not first and foremost about loyalty to Washington, the city, as it is about loyalty to Washington the man!

As I have repeatedly stated, I would like to see nullification run its course first. But I have an obligation to the public to remind it that, if all else fails, secession is an option.

On a related note, Russell Longcore at DumpDC has written a draft of a Texas Declaration of Independence, based on Thomas Jefferson's. You might be interested in comparing it with my draft Ohio Declaration of Independence, which is modeled on the South Carolina Declaration of the Causes of Secession.

* Not necessarily true -- the 50 states are more likely to reconfigure into 6-20 nations or loose confederations. Here is my conjecture.

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