Wednesday, September 22, 2021

It's Not Secession If You're Not Part Of Any Country

What follows is a mental exercise to which I don't really have an answer. 

What makes a nation? I can think of a couple of crucial characteristics.

  1. A border. That would seem to be the very top of the list. No border, no country.
  2. A set of laws. No laws means no rules for the inhabitants.
  3. A currency.
  4. A common language.
  5. A governmental structure.

As I watch the border "crisis*" unfold, I keep thinking that secession is a decent solution and that needs to be executed before all systems have completely failed. Today, I began to wonder, from what would states secede?

We don't have a border any more.

The Haitians at Del Rio have begun making lean-tos. On the plus side, there are no kids in cages. On the minus side, they're being released into the "United States," whatever that is, with only the most dilatory requests to file some paperwork, somewhere, at some time in the future. That means their constructions are probably not worth the effort.

Can you really say you have a set of laws if they only apply to some people and not to others? See: vandalism, arson, looting, murder, etc. during the BLM riots.

We have a currency, but its debasement continues apace with the Fed printing like mad.

We sort of have a common language, English, but here in San Diego, you could make a strong case for there actually being a pair of official languages, Spanish and English.

We have a governmental structure, but given the fact that our border laws, legally enacted by our democratically-elected legislature mean nothing, what is the actual form of government? President Biden is claiming he can create a vaccine mandate without any voting by the legislature at all. Isn't that at odds with our understanding of how the government is supposed to work?

If a state wanted to secede, from what would it be seceding? Would you say, "Texas, you may not secede. You must stay and have your land overrun by non-citizens. You must obey laws that people all around you do not obey. You must use a currency that is being generated out of thin air. You must communicate to us in English. You must send us two senators and n congresscritters to represent you in an near-powerless legislature. Finally, you must accede to the wishes of our judiciary, whatever those wishes happen to be at the moment."

It seems to me that the US, as presently composed, is not nearly as solid and well-defined of a thing as one might think.

* - It's not a crisis if it's intentional.


tim eisele said...

I think that, equally important as considering what you seceding *from*, is what you are seceding *to*. If Texas seceded, what would they become? Would the current state government change? And would the people who are preventing the borders from being closed in Texas now suddenly vanish, or would they still be there?[1] Is there any reason, any at all, to think that the state-level politicians are any more competent than the federal-level ones?

Moving to California, I assume that if the whole state seceded you would not be happy if the current state government stayed in power. Assuming you couldn't remove and replace them, would the secession continue? Would San Diego County be more to your liking as an independent country? Or maybe just your immediate neighborhood? Or, maybe you aren't really in step with your immediate neighbors, and it would just be you?

It's all well and good to talk about secession as a theoretical idea, but it seems to me that actually intending to *do* it will inevitably go poorly. And threatening to do it comes off a lot like standing on the street corner, dousing yourself in gasoline, and threatening to set yourself on fire if your demands aren't met. I mean, people get results sometimes by doing that, but it isn't really ideal.

[1] A few days ago, I asked who benefits from not enforcing the border, and Ilion kindly gave a list of five groups. Would any of those groups cease to exist if Texas became an independent country?

Mostly Nothing said...

I think Cal would be unable to secede. It has a lot of power and influence over the rest of the country now. So, why would it. And if it did secede, how would they get water and electricity? If I'm a Nevada or Arizona electric company providing electricity to California, and they secede, my rates to sell to them are at a Minimum quadrupling. And if I'm on the Colorado river, rationing so that California has enough water? That ends immediately.

Oh, KT, a point of correction; vandalism, lawlessness, rioting, and other cherished "rights" of the progressives trying to destroy the country, continue on every day in Minneapolis, it didn't stop when the riots.

Take a look at The shot spotter map for Minneapolis.
Default will give you shots heard for the last week. Click on the green button in the middle bottom. And choose "Calls for Service, year-to-date gunfire".

Now, say you get a job offer to work in Minneapolis. Money is really good. Would you take it?

St Paul's Failure, err Mayor, rejected buying shot spotter because it isn't proven to work. While it would also be bad, it wouldn't be near as bad as this.