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October 14, 2009

Market Watch: Hey, Let the Red States Secede Already; We're Better Off Without Them

Very bait-y, of course, but I do wonder if it makes sense.

In case you missed it, Sens. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, and Tom Carper, D.-Delaware, are considering a proposal that may, at long last, break the logjam over health-care reform.

In other words: the blue states can have public health insurance, and the red states can go without.

You may wonder why it took so long to get here. If Blue America wants public health insurance and Red America doesn't, why should one of them end up denied? And this is not a new issue. Liberal commentator Paul Krugman, in his book, "The Conscience of a Liberal," argues that Harry Truman's plan for universal health insurance was blocked, in part, because Dixie didn't want integrated public hospitals.

The Schumer-Carper bill raises a terrific prospect. We could apply this principle all sorts of other areas of government activity, from taxes and spending to education.

If Blue and Red America want to pursue separate policies, why shouldn't they? The unspoken secret of American politics is that Blue America would be far better off, economically and otherwise, going it alone. Blue America has a huge amount to gain and almost nothing to lose from undoing Lincoln's Folly -- a.k.a. the Civil War, the War of Northern Aggression -- and leaving the South and other red states to their own devices.

Another possibility he missed? Since northeastern and California liberals are so gung-ho about higher taxes, why not have different tax rates for different areas of the country? If it's so damn important to New York City voters to pay high taxes, well, why don't we let them do so?

Enjoy the socialism, guys. It's worked like gangbusters for every nation that's tried it.

But -- here comes the claim I'm a raving secessionist or "White Supremacist," or whatever jihad Charles Johnson is on lately (never a jihad against the actual jihad anymore) -- does it make sense we decide every four years which half of the country is going to be downright miserable, angry, and impotent?

I've never understood the desire to keep whole states in the grip of a civil war. Why not partition? They plainly do not wish to be under the rule of their rivals, and are willing to kill to make that point. So why sacrifice human lives for the sake of an idiotic abstraction like a state?

And in many cases, states are actually wholly artificial contrivances, designed thoughtlessly with the stroke of a pen by the British foreign office back in eighteen-naughtety-naught.

Obviously America isn't an artificial state, nor are we (thankfully) tottering on the edge of civil war. (And those who speak lightly of such a thing -- have you read any civil war history? You know how brutal and miserable and deadly such a thing is?)

But still-- we seem to have two very different conceptions of the Just Society, and we fight like hell every four years to see whose conception is most thwarted.

Frankly, I often ponder whether either side (but particularly the liberal side) really cares about forwarding their own notions of a good society, or if they are mostly consumed with just sticking their thumbs in the eyes of those they so plainly despise.

Does it make sense? I do begin to wonder if the basic concept of the utilitarian good -- the most good for the most people, and least woe for the rest -- suggests that maybe it wouldn't be such an awful idea if there were two -- or three or four, for that matter -- American states.

The End of the American Era: Of course, that would mean the end of Pax Americana, as the liberal states would assume a more European (tres sophisticated!) view of military spending and the appropriate number of men under arms.

Leaving the less wealth and less populous ares of the former USA to field a military force with any kind of super-Canadian capacity.

So... kind of a bad idea right there.

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posted by Ace at 01:20 PM

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