Saturday, April 18, 2009

Secession: That’s Just Crazy Talk

Ever since Texas Gov. Rick Perry mentioned seceding from the union, wingnuts have been jumping on that talking point like ticks on a hound.

Perry is now backing away from his comment, but the usual suspects in the wackadoodle contingent--Tom DeLay, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck--are all over it.

So, it has come to this. Gov. Rick Perry, facing a serious primary challenge from Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson, needs to prove his conservative bonafides. How does he do this? By talking secession!

Good grief. Have conservatives really disintegrated to this level? I remember when pandering to the conservative base simply required talking about guns, God and abortion. Good times, good times.

I’ve been thinking about this and I find it truly shocking. The conservative base really, truly cannot live in an America with a Democrat in the White House. It’s sort of like those tea partiers with their “No Taxation Without Representation” signs. Unless you live in Washington D.C., you’ve got representation, people. You may not have voted for it, but you’ve got it. That's kinda been our system of representation since, you know, forever.

How do you think liberals felt for the past eight years with Bush in the White House? Liberals like me who live in Tennessee, represented by two Republican Senators? Since I didn't vote for them, do you really think I don’t have “representation”? Of course not. You'd tell me to suck it up.

I really feel sorry for conservatives. It must be awful to live in such ideological exile. At least liberals have moving to Canada as a backup plan. And oh yeah, remember how conservatives mocked liberals who threatened to do just that in 2004? Of course, few if any made good on their promise, and they were ridiculed mercilessly by the right. Fair enough. But hey, at least they offered to leave the country; they weren’t threatening to take a huge chunk of real estate with them.

It must be truly terrible to be on the conservative fringe. You have no place to go, save declare independence and start your own country. And let’s see what that would look like:
The new nation would have to raise an Army and a Navy and an Air Force from scratch, of course. For the first few years, if it didn't want to be gobbled up by Mexico or intimidated by the hugely irritated United States to the north, there would probably have to be confiscatory taxation, and a draft of a million or so healthy men and women over 18, just to guard its thousands of miles of borders. The drug violence and corruption in Mexico would quickly move north and permeate the new nation. Loyal Americans would no doubt launch a resistance movement. Under such conditions, in this militaristic state, we can assume that certain "adjustments" would be made in civil liberties.

So, high taxes and repressive government. Texas could play its hand like Cuba, and become a satellite of China or Russia, and save money on defense that way, but that sort of defeats the purpose of independence, no? Isn't escaping "socialism" the whole point?

With all that local tax money going to defense, the state's schools and roads and bridges and medical infrastructure would suffer. Agribusiness and ranchers and old folks and colleges would decline as well. No more of that dreaded U.S. federal aid.

What’s truly amazing is that a Republican running for governor is actually pandering to this viewpoint. I mean, what does this tell us?

The conservative movement has reached rock bottom. You can practically see moderates and independents backing away from the crazy people in horror.

I've discussed the end of the Republican Party before. I don't see anything in this current state of affairs that portends otherwise.