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Thursday, December 06, 2012

Thom Hartmann interview

THOM HARTMANN: Vox Day, which is Latin for “the voice of God.” VoxDay.blogspot.com, his website; Christian libertarian; author of several books, including A Throne Of Bones, just out today. The blog is “Vox Popoli”, which would be the voice of the people. So, Voice of God, welcome.
VOX DAY: Thanks, Tom.
TH: Great to have you with us. You are a self-professed secessionist. Explain this to me.
VD: The way that I would begin it is that I would say that I favor self-determination for all peoples, whether they’re American, whether they’re Scottish, whether they’re Catalonian…
TH: You know, any person, including yourself, can hop on a plane and go to any other country, and if you can get them to take you, you’re there.
VD: I am. I’ve lived in Europe for 13, 14 years now
TH: Ok. So, you know . . . what’s the problem?
VD: I don’t have any problem, it’s simply an intellectual thing. It’s simply understanding that, throughout the course of human history, it is entirely normal for groups of people to come together for a period of time, and then break apart after a while.  You know, this is a pattern of history that has existed for as long as man has written these things down. In fact, in that new novel that you mentioned, it’s based on the Roman social war of 91BC, which was, essentially, a secessionist movement, even though they ended up joining the empire after all.
TH: So you’re suggesting … let’s translate this into simple English. Are you suggesting that the citizens of any particular state, on a majority vote, should be able to simply withdraw themselves from the union as states did in 1860?
VD: Of course. We’re seeing it happen right now in Scotland. We think it’s unthinkable because America is such a short-lived….
TH: But Scotland has historically been a separate country. And, they have profoundly different . . . I spent a fair amount of time in Scotland. And it’s a very different culture from British culture. And they have fought wars over the years. I mean, you know, what’s his name, the crazy actor, Mel Gibson, made a movie out of one of them.  I mean, they fought wars with the British. England, historically, was a separate country, just because they happened to be on the same island. And you could argue that the only reason Scotland was part of the United Kingdom was because they were conquered, and now they’re “unconquering” themselves.  That’s very different from states voluntarily joining a union like we have here in the United States.
VD: But they weren’t conquered. They came together as part of the voluntary Acts of Union from 1707. Their voluntarily, democratically-supported union has lasted more than twice as long as the history of the United States [Union].(1)  And so, we’re seeing this all over the world.  We’re seeing Catalonia, which has been part of Castilian Spain for even longer than Scotland’s been part of the United Kingdom, voting, again democratically, left and right joining together, to vote the secessionists into power.…
TH: Right. But, again, don’t you think that that’s because they’re sick and tired of Spain being part of the EU, and thus having lost their national sovereignty, and so they’re going to claim their own national sovereignty and withdraw themselves from the EU?
VD: That might be the case with the Catalonians. That’s not the case with the Scottish. The Scottish actually want to get out of the United Kingdom, and then join  the EU in their own right which....
TH: Which seems crazy to me.
VD: It’s totally crazy to me, too. But that’s the whole point about self-determination. What is it to us as Americans or whatever we might be …
TH: So do you think Lincoln should have just said when the South seceded, even before… A number of the states seceded after he was elected but before he was installed into office, because back then the elections were in November and you were sworn into office in March. And during that time, you had a bunch of states that said, “Ok, that’s it, we’re out of here”… that he should have just said, “Goodbye”?
VD: Oh, absolutely. In fact, the interesting thing is that before Lincoln, about, maybe, 30 years before that, the secessionist states were the New England states. They were the ones who were talking about seceding. I don’t recall what the deal was, why they were interested. But it was never really questioned that a state had the right to voluntarily leave the union because, otherwise, if they didn’t have the right to voluntarily leave, then it was just another militarily imposed empire.
TH: But that right is not laid out in the constitution.
VD: I’m sorry?
TH: That right is not laid out in the constitution.
VD: Well, no, because the constitution has to do with the rights of the federal government. It doesn’t have anything to do with the rights of the states. If you’re writing a document limiting the federal government....
TH: Well, actually, it does. It gives the federal government, for example, the right to regulate commerce between the states.
VD: Sure.
TH: It says how states shall apportion their electors. It says how states shall determine the number of representatives they’re sending to Washington, DC. There are a lot of rules for the states in the constitution.
VD: And those are all things that have to do with the operation of the federal government. It doesn’t have anything to do with the operation of the sovereign and several states.  Obviously, when you join a group, you agree to abide by the rules of that group.
TH: So if Texas secedes, and becomes the independent nation of Texas, what happens to those Americans in Texas who consider themselves Americans who don’t want secession?
VD: Well, presumably in a democratic country, in a free and democratic country, those people would either have to decide if they wanted to stay and accept it, the same way that the people in America at the time of the revolutionary war …  You know, many them either moved to Canada, or moved back to England, or in some cases they just decided to stay and become Americans. It would be up to them, and presumably the Texans would be focused enough on freedom that they would let those people do whatever it was they wanted.
TH: What is it about the United States that …  first of all, what state do you live in?
VD: I don’t. Like I said, I’ve lived in Italy for 13 years.
TH: So you live in Italy right now?
VD: Yeah. I used to live in Minnesota.
TH: In Minnesota. So… you really don’t have a dog in this fight. Doesn’t that diminish your credibility somewhat in making these kind of statements? I mean, this isn’t going to affect you.
VD: Well, no, of course it’s going to affect me in the sense that I have friends and family there. I mean, I wouldn’t say that… Would you say about somebody who lived in the states who has family back in Scotland that they have no … Of course there’s an interest. But my primary interest in this, as in practically everything, is primarily intellectual.  Am I going to shed any massive tears if Catalonia breaks away from Spain? No. Am I going to be terribly upset if Texas decides to be independent? No. If you support self-determination for one group of people in the world, you should support it for everyone. And why shouldn’t Americans have the same right of self-determination that we support for the people in Libya, for the people in Egypt, for the people…
TH: But most of the states who are talking about secession are states that, for every dollar that they send to Washington, DC, they get back $1.10, $1.20, $1.30. Texas gets more federal money in than they send out. So when they secede, first of all, all the military bases in the state would close. And that’s not even included in that equation that I just shared with you. Secondly, everybody loses their Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, all those other things.  How is that state going to exist?
VD: First of all, Texas is not going to have any trouble existing, because Texas is, would be one of the, I believe, twenty largest economies in the world, thirty largest economies in the world. I mean, if …
TH: Not without federal infrastructure.
VD: Obviously it might not be quite as easy for them. But whether it is or not, that’s their right to say. It’s not for you or me to decide. If Delaware, for example … let’s take the most absurd example … Delaware would be like, ... Lichtenstein or something. Now, you wouldn’t think that they would have any business going independent. But if they want to go independent and live in grass huts and that sort of thing, what is that to you or me? That’s what freedom is all about, is allowing people freedom to make stupid choices.
TH: Well, you make a very compelling and libertarian argument…. Hm. Interesting. I wonder if this is going to be THE thing for the Republican Party.

(1)  Just to be clear, I can do the math.  I was referring to the post-1865 Union that was forcibly imposed, not the voluntary one that lasted from 1776 to 1861.

Labels:

75 Comments:

Anonymous Daniel December 06, 2012 12:51 PM  

Thanks, SL!

Anonymous Edjamacator December 06, 2012 12:52 PM  

Just watched this on Youtube. I like how he makes the idiotic determination that just because you don't live here, you possibly have less credibility. I could say Canada's healthcare is messed up based on what I read and hear about it without having to live there. I think he was looking for a typical leftist distraction to discredit you because he couldn't come up with anything else.

Anonymous Jerome Horowitz December 06, 2012 1:00 PM  

Vox, perhaps you could have referenced the fact that there already exists sovereign Nations within the US currently. Known as Indian Nations, many of which are doing rather well extracting monies from the white man willingly.

Blogger Survival Gardener, AKA David the Good December 06, 2012 1:01 PM  

Good work... wish you'd had more time on the air, though. Perhaps next time.

Anonymous Legal, Schmegal December 06, 2012 1:02 PM  

There was no "legal provision" for the 13 colonies to leave the British Empire in the 1700s, or for Ireland to become independent in 1922, or for colonies to leave the British or French empires after 1945, or for the Republicans of the USSR to become separate countries after 1991.

Anonymous A good ROI December 06, 2012 1:36 PM  

Thanks for posting that.

Anonymous fish December 06, 2012 1:44 PM  

That was so much better in print!

He is just another lefty carnival barker....I thought he was supposed to be the "intellectual leftist at RT.

Anonymous TLM December 06, 2012 1:49 PM  

That whole nonsense about states taking in more then they pay in at the federal level is total BS. That's on;y true in my state because of the massive effort by the feds to stop us from mining and selling our own abundant sources of cheap energy. And then you have our weed. Those 2 alone would be enough for my state to drop its state income tax and still provide the free loaders with their welfare benefits. I'd imagine Texas is in a similar position with its own resources. The Feds are the ones keeping us slaves through over-regulation and restraint of trade.

Anonymous Legal, Schmegal December 06, 2012 1:54 PM  

That's "Republics of the USSR" not "Republicans of the USSR" -- heh heh, a freudian slip, perhaps.

Anonymous George of the Hole December 06, 2012 1:56 PM  

Here's a question for all.

What would be the modern day equivalent of the "Intolerable Acts"? What punitive policy would send you over the edge?

Anonymous Crispy December 06, 2012 2:04 PM  

But Scotland has historically been a separate country.

But then so was the Republic of Texas.

Also, where is the power to prevent secession granted in the Constitution? And then: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution...."

Anonymous Daniel December 06, 2012 2:09 PM  

What punitive policy would send you over the edge?

Already over, George. I'd known for a long time things had become intolerable, but the day that I found out that my unemployed single mother neighbor, ten years my junior, with 1 kid, had a higher annual income than me, fully employed, married, four kids was probably the "policy" that sealed the deal.

Anonymous Daniel December 06, 2012 2:13 PM  

My favorite bit was about how Scotland used to go to war with England, so it had every right to secede. Apparently, the Civil War was a conference of the Ladies Auxiliary. After all, those corpses just look fabulous in those Matthew Brady snapshots...

Anonymous Crispy December 06, 2012 2:16 PM  

What would be the modern day equivalent of the "Intolerable Acts"?

PelosiCare is among the most recent.

One old one which I'm surprised hasn't raised some ire is the preclearance provision of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Affected states (primarily in the South) have to "preclear" any change to "any voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice, or procedure with respect to voting..." In practice this means that voter ID laws can be in effect in some states, but blocked by federal judges in others.

Anonymous Eduardo December 06, 2012 2:26 PM  

No wonder I was having a hard time tracking Vox in the USA, the sneaky guy lives in Italy!

By the way ... why?

Anonymous Razoraid December 06, 2012 2:30 PM  

Excellent all the way around. It appears the host could not accept the idea that men should have free will and the ability to exercise self-determination, which simply proves that liberals are totalitarians at heart. Before I pass further judgment I'm sure Tad will be here shortly to clear things up. Hate when that happens.

Anonymous Not near as... December 06, 2012 2:30 PM  

"No wonder I was having a hard time tracking Vox in the USA, the sneaky guy lives in Italy!

By the way ... why?"

Because he's really smart.

Blogger Alexander December 06, 2012 2:34 PM  

Crispy, it raises ire. It's just impossible to talk about without the snarky, "well, you guys just can't be trusted..."

If you go around with laws that treat some states as conquered provinces, it really shouldn't come as a surprise if people in those states feel that way.

Anonymous JT December 06, 2012 2:40 PM  

well.....we didn't have the Articles of Confederation formally ratified until 1781, then some argue that the Constitution was the first federalist usurpation/power-grab (I'm mostly with Patrick Henry and the Anti-federalists, their arguments have been proven out by the years since). Not that the Constitution is bad in the least, if it were adhered to. The problem is the same problem there is with empowering any central authority, at some point it goes bad, and the further away it is from the source of its authority the less accountable it will become. Add to that the financial and money power takeover by a specific corporate interest with all their lawyer power-brokers in D.C. and you get what we have now.

Not that I think Rick Perry is any kind of champion of freedom, states rights, or anything but another shill.

Anonymous Mr Green Man December 06, 2012 2:41 PM  

Mr. Hartmann comes across as a bigger ass in the transcript.

Anonymous Philalethes December 06, 2012 2:43 PM  

So, "Vox Day" = "Vox Dei"? I knew it sounded familiar somehow, but had never taken the time (since I discovered your WND columns a dozen+ years ago) to think about it. Seems like the sort of nom-de-plume a young person might find amusing, but an older person might come to regret as a little presumptuous—unless you really do regard yourself as the "Voice of God"?

Blogger Alexander December 06, 2012 2:53 PM  

It's possible that it could also mean what it says and be "Voice of Day", which brings to mind the idea of shedding light on a subject.

Anonymous BillB December 06, 2012 2:55 PM  

Article I Section - prohibitions on states.

Note the absence of any clause pertaining to secession.

Receiving more fed dollars than paid in - violates Article I Section 8 Paragraph 1 which restricts all expenditures to those things pertinent to the US as a whole and does not allow for specific expenditures that benefit single or even multiple states. The expenditures are for the debts, common defence, and general welfare of the WHOLE United States, ot of individuals or individual states.

Anonymous Boetain December 06, 2012 2:56 PM  

Why would the military bases in Texas automatically close? The U.S.A. loves wasting money having bases in other countries. There are at least 13 foreign countries where the US military personnel count is at least 4 figures each. So, what's one more? I mean, they might reason that Texas is a larger national interest than Djibouti.

This guy Thom is supposed to be smart but his talking points are full of obvious errors.

Anonymous VD December 06, 2012 3:06 PM  

Seems like the sort of nom-de-plume a young person might find amusing, but an older person might come to regret as a little presumptuous—unless you really do regard yourself as the "Voice of God"?

I would think someone with the name "Philatheles" would be well-equipped to figure the rest of it out. Follow the Latin into Greek....

Anonymous Simon Grey December 06, 2012 3:11 PM  

"Mr. Hartmann comes across as a bigger ass in the transcript."

@Mr Greenman- agreed. He also comes across as a terrible interviewer.

Anonymous Grendelizer December 06, 2012 3:18 PM  

Dang. Well played, Mr. Day! If only all such interviewees could hold their own in both reasoned arguments and good humor in the face of determined skirmishing.

Anonymous kh123 December 06, 2012 3:18 PM  

Daniel: "Apparently, the Civil War was a conference of the Ladies Auxiliary. After all, those corpses just look fabulous in those Matthew Brady snapshots..."

'Day Lewis' will have to be added to the end of your comment handle from now on. "I - drink - YOUR - milkshake. I DRINK IT UP!"

Anonymous Sexual Chocolate (friend of Elmer) December 06, 2012 3:23 PM  

Vox, I would really like to hear you opposite Alex Jones, or any infowars staff. Like Rob Dew (the one guy that looks cool), et al. I think it would be all worth our time. Then you could all talk about missiles vs. rockets in Gaza, and all that... [snicker] (not the candy bar, although I definitely love chocolate)

Blogger JohnG December 06, 2012 3:26 PM  

The infrastructure argument seems a little thin too. If Texas kept all of it's taxes in house, it would be able to pave the roads and what not. Also, they might even be tempted into building roads to a German quality where they don't have to constantly be under construction (as a welfare project) all the time.

And if I were Texas, I'd keep the military materials too. Posession being 9/10's of the law and all that.

Anonymous Daniel December 06, 2012 3:31 PM  

Someone needs to work up a graph for these people:

Day = Dei = Theo

Vox Day = Voice of Theo, with a cute multi-level trap for the pseudointellectual atheists thrown in.

Atheist: "Vox Day? What a jackass. He really thinks he's the voice of God?"

Logician: "Don't you believe that God is a creation of man, and in its most basic essence, man is God?"

Atheist: "Well sure, but that's not the point. He's a Christian, and that makes him, by his own rules, a blasphemous hypocrite!"

Logician: "And you care about blasphemy of other religions, why exactly? After all, don't you believe that religion should be challenged from within? Blasphemy is basically religious insurrection, not hypocrisy, unless it is done in secret. Considering it is the name he puts on his books and his blog, you've got to throw out the possibility of hypocrisy."

Atheist: "Whatever about his blasphemy. It is his arrogance that gets me."

Logician: "How is it arrogant to equate oneself with a non-existent thing?"

Atheist: "Because he's taking the place of God! Even a non-existent one, that's a pretty big deal. Haven't you seen Star Trek V?"

Logician: "No he's not. Day sounds like dei, but dei is theo in Greek. Vox Day really means "voice of Theo", or, from his perspective, "voice of myself." Its a multi-lingual semiotic amusement, not unlike the man himself. After all, he was the first interviewer to make now obvious play off the planet's foremost semiotician in the title of his interview "Deep Eco"

Atheist: "Yeah. He thinks he's so special. Jackass."

Anonymous O.C. December 06, 2012 3:32 PM  

> But Scotland has historically been a separate country. And, they have profoundly different . . . I spent a fair amount of time in Scotland. And it’s a very different culture from British culture. And they have fought wars over the years

Does the Republic of Texas ring any bells? How about the Republica de California? And wasn't there a short-lived kingdom of Deseret? A Hawaiian monarchy? I know we could drive over to the Dakotas and without too much trouble find plenty of people who'd argue that they're living in a sovereign nation that was conquered by the U.S. Army and forcibly annexed.

You want to see a very different culture? Go to New Orleans. Or better yet, go to Chattanooga, and while you're there, walk around the Chickamauga battlefield, and climb Lookout Mountain.

"very different culture" and "they fought wars"? Yeah. We got that covered.

Anonymous kh123 December 06, 2012 3:34 PM  

Thom Hartmann: "How is that state going to exist?...Not without federal infrastructure."

Of course not. The hardest point of the sell is to get the Ned to actually put the needle in his arm; after that, they'll be begging for their next fix.

You'd think that the Green crowd, what with their neo-luddite obsession over human dependence on modern technology and consumer goods, would have an inkling of thought over how being an Etat pusher is effectively the same thing magnified, since a). the infrastructure of that State - not to mention the goodies they'd hand out to the expectant proles - would almost completely be based on a modern technological existence; and b). it would be more prone to a irrevocable collapse than would a natural environment.

Anonymous scoobius dubious December 06, 2012 3:38 PM  

VD, you should have asked the guy point blank: Mohandas Gandhi, good or bad? I mean, the guy was trying to secede from the British Empire, one of the most humane and successful empires of all time, and he had no legal basis for it. Does this Thom guy approve of Gandhi's actions or not?

And by the way, Gandhi was, by the very definitions of the left, a complete and unregenerate racist: he was trying to toss the British out of India simply because of the COLOR OF THEIR SKIN!! I mean, he wanted the British to exit India because he thought they were not "Indian" (whatever that means; Indian-ness after all is just a social construct!). But of course the British were Indian, they had been living in India for over 200 years! These days in the UK, a newly-arrived Pakistani chain-migrant cousin-bride is a "Briton" after roughly 3 months' residence in Manchester -- so how in the wide world of sports were the British not Indians?

Conclusion: Gandhi was a racist.

Rub their noses in their own alleged reasoning.

Anonymous JT December 06, 2012 3:50 PM  

All these suggestions for Vox, here I'll add mine: one of Hartmann's imaginary points was that if Texas seceded they wouldn't get any soc sec. Or Medicare or anything...he misses the point of being a sovereign independent nation means the power to coin and print their own money...Texas has a thriving economy, and if a currency is the rating of goods and services demanded from that economy, I'm sure people would be willing to exchange dollars to buy Texas goods and services...in republic credits (set up for Star Wars joke).

Anonymous Mountain Man December 06, 2012 4:13 PM  

Well done. It is difficult to think on one's feet in these high pressure situations with a hostile interlocutor.

Since we're all happy to critique Vox, I'll add mine.

Hartmann: "It gives the federal government, for example, the right to regulate commerce between the states."

Vox: "No, the people delegate their power to the government, via the Constitution, to engage in certain limited activities. The government possesses no rights at all, only delegated powers."

Anonymous 43rd Virginia Calalry December 06, 2012 4:15 PM  

TH: But most of the states who are talking about secession are states that, for every dollar that they send to Washington, DC, they get back $1.10, $1.20, $1.30. Texas gets more federal money in than they send out.

What is omitted here is that for every dollar that the Federal government spends, 43 cents is borrowed so Texas sends a dollar to Washington and only gets back 60 cents and still owes 60 cents that was borrowed on their behalf.

Anonymous Elmer Fudge (friend of Sexual Chocolate) December 06, 2012 4:25 PM  

OT: (but oh so relevant to the dissolution of the Union)

This guy really does get it...

You see, soldiers become “veterans,” a group our Malthusian overlords look upon as “useless eaters,” a burden on the social fabric, perhaps even a threat, angry, trained to kill and, for those who learned to know truth from lies, a group increasingly looking so much closer to home for America’s real enemies.

Now one cannot be surprised and/or shocked. We have here a Vietnam Marine officer combat and intelligence service veteran. On top of all this, we have an individual who understands the Societas Iesu [that's Latin for Hartmann, tadpole, et al] Now, that is someone who REALLY gets it...

Anonymous JCclimber December 06, 2012 4:30 PM  

But, but, but they're taking more money than they are putting into the Federal budget!!!

If the libs really believe this fact, then they should be cheering for the Texans to leave the system. More $$$ for the blue states to keep.

They're just (rightfully) afraid that the most productive citizen in the country will be hoofing it to Texas to restart their business, leaving nothing but welfare recipients and government employees behind. So, they can follow logic. It's just at the unvoiced, subconscious level. The level which they can't acknowledge because it would point out that they KNOW their fellow liberals are a bunch of parasites.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 06, 2012 5:07 PM  

So, from a practical standpoint, what should the requirements for succession be?

Simple Majority?

60%?

75%?

Washington State of course wouldn't vote for succession, being in the grip of the Seattle Democrat machine, but the eastern part of the state, east of the Cascades, has been trying off and on to succeeed from the rest of the State (wanting to call itself the State of Lincoln, ironically enough). And Northern California some years ago wanted to break away from Southern Cal. Now, both were highly complicated by the fact that the Federal Government has to approve any new States (or Territories), and the same forces that eventually undid all the pre-ACW compromises prevent that.

But suppose Eastern Washington, Eastern Oregon, and some chunk of inland California wanted to join together as The Intermountain Republic (they will need a better name, but Columbia is taken, Cascadia is along the coast, Great Basin doesn't sound so good... anyway I digress). From a practical standpoint, what sort of requirements should there be?

Anonymous Jack Amok December 06, 2012 5:08 PM  

Bah. "Secession" above.

Anonymous Philalethes December 06, 2012 5:22 PM  

@ Vox: I would think someone with the name "Philatheles" would be well-equipped to figure the rest of it out. Follow the Latin into Greek....

(Actually it's "Philalethes"; Philatheles appears to mean nothing in Greek.)

Being a poorly-educated 60s hippie, I never actually studied Greek (though my father taught it at St Johns College in those years, while I was busy taking acid and escaping the draft), but when ca. 2000 I needed a handle for comments on various blogs I wondered if there might be a standard Greek word for the idea I had in mind (given the cachet of the language in our culture) and, hunting around, found at the Perseus Project an apparently famous passage by Aristotle that employed this word, whence I borrowed it for my use. (And later learned there was a prominent medieval Mason who also used it for his published philosophizings.)

Anyway, thanks for the hint, and with a little help from Google Translate (and having looked you up once in Wikipedia, so I know your "worldly" name), I figured it out. Clever, and as one who enjoys linguistic wordplay, I salute you.

@ Daniel: Well, I saw your post after I figured this out, so perhaps your sarcastic reference to "these people" doesn't include me? Nor am I either of the characters in your little skit, amusing as it is. As I mentioned, I discovered Vox's writing in WND back before it became a knee-jerk Repuglican mouthpiece, and have enjoyed reading him since. My comment above was not meant to criticize him on the "voice of God" issue; I was just curious, especially given his consistent public profession of his faith.

Anonymous Daniel December 06, 2012 5:38 PM  

Philalethes, I wasn't talking about you. I was referring to the Hartmanns of the world, for whom the trap is set. He was the ass who presumed something incorrectly and ran with it (and a fair number of Vox's foils do this. It is irritating to me if for nothing else but it causes them to fall face down, right out of the blocks. I'd rather they actually try to keep up, at least for the first 30 seconds or so!).

You simply asked a question. Sorry if you felt the sting - not meant for you.

Anonymous Daniel December 06, 2012 5:40 PM  

So, from a practical standpoint, what should the requirements for succession be?

From a practical standpoint, I believe the decision goes to the side with the most guns.

Anonymous DonReynolds December 06, 2012 5:45 PM  

During the seemingly endless negotiations for the independence of India from the UK, one of the British arguments against Indian independence was that the Indians were not capable of running their own country as well as the British were doing.

To this Mahatma Gandhi replied that everyone in the world prefers his own IMPERFECT government to a PERFECT government run by foreigners.

This must also be true today. Southerners had rather live in the mud huts and scrape the hides of animals than prosper in a country where they are despised by a majority of their fellow countrymen for the single reason that they are Southerners from one of the eleven former Confederate states.

And that, boys and girls, is why I just love Yankee bigots, especially the ones on television who consider people in the South fair game for all their punches and insults. Keep it up and we will soon be gone.

Anonymous DonReynolds December 06, 2012 5:56 PM  

So, from a practical standpoint, what should the requirements for succession be?

Daniel...."From a practical standpoint, I believe the decision goes to the side with the most guns."

Not at all true. Most of the countries of the world achieved their own independence without bloodshed or with very little bloodshed. India and Pakistan did not fight a protracted war to win their independence. Neither did Norway. Guns seldom freed anyone and seldom resulted in self determination. Guns are often necessary for military conquest or defense against it.

Internationally, self determination of people is expressed by a plebiscite, which is by popular vote of those wishing to seceed from the jurisdiction and control of an existing government. This was done on many occasions, with the majority will expressed by the vote determining the outcome. If the existing government refused to accept the will of the people wishing to govern themselves, a civil war could result, but is not necessary.

Anonymous Noah B. December 06, 2012 6:08 PM  

The left's argument that red states receive more than they pay in taxes just makes the case for peaceful separation all the more convincing. Why should New York and California have to continue to subsidize Texas and Iowa?

Anonymous DonReynolds December 06, 2012 6:11 PM  

Boetain..."Why would the military bases in Texas automatically close?"

The military bases would remain, of course, in Texas and ten other Southern states, all property of the Confederate States of America. All Federal property in the South would become property of the new government....including NASA facilities, arsenals, military, air and navy bases, ports and customs, post offices, national defense highways, courthouses, office buildings, national parks and forests, USDA experimental stations, IRS centers, etc etc etc. And many of those working in those Federal jobs would choose to remain, rather than be relocated back to some of the remaining states.

During the Civil War, the US Post Office (for example) continued to operate in the Southern states even after they quit the Union.

Blogger Son of Brock Landers December 06, 2012 6:21 PM  

Look at the interviewer searching for pansy reasons against withdrawing from the Union "you lose SS and medicare" and where would the formally deducted federal taxes of that state's workers be going to? I do think a governor making this move would have to explain a defense position, which really is diplomacy, because people would be a bit scared. You think the employers of that state will keep sending the money to DC? Also the line of how would a state exist reveals the sad mindset of the statist lefty: they view the government as the state when the people that make up the state are what matters. A nation is its population, its culture and norms.

Anonymous scoobius dubious December 06, 2012 6:25 PM  

I've used this line before, but again, as Eamonn de Valera said (at least apocryphally) during the Irish war for independence... "We will defeat the British Empire by going about our lives as if it simply did not exist."

A successful secession will not be won with guns, nor should they be necessary. The first thing is for more and more people to simply stop recognizing the authority of the federal government; or, even more fundamentally, for more and more people to begin saying aloud that the federal government does not represent their interests, and for all practical observable purposes is in fact their enemy.

And again as I've said before, a state-by-state secession may be the most orderly thing but it will not in itself achieve anything profitable without some form of unbending expulsion of non-whites, especially blacks, mestizos, and Jews. It must be a whites-only secession, because whites are the people whose self-determination is being consciously and systematically trampled, whilst also being commanded to pay for their own dispossession; they are precisely the people who are now being denied self-determination, and who are being eradicated through soft genocide, via an actively hostile, overtly racist, anti-white government which is intent on their dispossession and elimination through endless nonwhite immigration.

Whites speaking through the states is a good beginning, though it will not in itself suffice. Unless and until North American whites come to see themselves as a distinct people with a distinct way of life and distinct genetic and biological pressures bearing down on them, thus requiring a secure, distinctly white homeland, which permanently bars all nonwhite immigrants from entry (they'll follow us around and suck our blood forever unless we explicitly forbid it), there will be no point to the achievement. A Texas that secedes with a population that is 55% mestizo, 15% black, 10% South Asian, and with all its power structures infested with Jews, is a Texas not worth talking about.

Anonymous Nah December 06, 2012 6:41 PM  

Most of the countries of the world achieved their own independence without bloodshed or with very little bloodshed. India and Pakistan did not fight a protracted war to win their independence.

Ummm... the partition of India resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths - perhaps as many as a million.

That aside, the countries that achieved independence without bloodshed after 1945 did so because the European colonial powers had exhausted themselves fighting Germany, and didn't have the money or the stomach to impose their will on their colonies much longer (though in some cases, e.g. France in Indochina and Algeria, they tried pretty hard). Moreover the Soviet Union and Communist China armed and supported the independence movements in order to weaken "world imperialism".

Thus, 60 million dead in WW2 was the indispensible prerequisite for the "independence without bloodshed or with very little bloodshed" after WW2.

Anonymous Elmer Fudge (friend of Sexual Chocolate) December 06, 2012 6:59 PM  

Every possible question one would have about Texas secession from the Union of the United States of America. Yes, some have really thought this thing through. The inertia is building. Once it gets going, it will be unstoppable. Ever tried to buck the tide at the beach?

It is not a matter of if, but when. I say, within the decade, it will happen. The FEDS will be so bankrupt, it will be powerless to lift a finger, in any kind of action. The only thing left to assert, will be its so-called military might. That might, a big chunk residing in Texas, and a big chunk being Texans. The day will come, it will be begging Texas to loan them money..............

REAL Money...

Anonymous just another steve December 06, 2012 7:20 PM  

"Just watched this on Youtube. I like how he makes the idiotic determination that just because you don't live here, you possibly have less credibility. I could say Canada's healthcare is messed up based on what I read and hear about it without having to live there."

You could say that. But you'd be wrong. Compared to the insanely expensive shambles that is the US healthcare system, Canadian health care is a model of efficiency. Ain't no one in Canada going bankrupt because they get sick, or dying because they can't afford insurance, or having coverage (and therefore care) refused because they have a pre-existing condition.

Blogger tz December 06, 2012 7:42 PM  

If TX] succeeds in secession, they could tell the moochers getting SSand those about to that there is a ticket to CA ready. Ron Paul 2014, President of the lone star republic.

V.s. the loan star democrazy.

Anonymous LurkyLoo December 06, 2012 7:45 PM  

OT - Vox would love to see you comment on Paglia's latest essay:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/taylor-swift-katy-perry-hollywood-398095

Anonymous scoobius dubious December 06, 2012 7:45 PM  

just another steve has a very good point. However, I sort of wonder what would happen to the Canadian healthcare system if thirty million impoverished Americans, lacking health insurance, were to swarm across the northern border and abjectly throw themselves on the mercy of the Canadian system, demanding free health care for themselves and for their endless ninos.

steve and I don't really have to wonder about this, because of course it is going to happen. It is just a matter of time. As America swells to bursting with Latinos and Somalis and Sudanese and Guatamalans and Pakistanis and Hindus and Nigerians and Algerians and Morroccans and Bolivians and Colombians and Bangladeshis and Yemenis and Salvadorans and Eritreans and Ethiopians and Hmong and Chinese and Filipinos and Haitians and Jamaicans, guess what? The system will give out. It has to. And all these virtuous, vibrant peoples, being natural welfare farmers, will naturally gravitate northwards, to where the next big handout lies.

O, Canada!
Glorious, and for free!
O Canada,
We swarm, we swarm
Into thee!

Anonymous Robert in Arabia December 06, 2012 7:46 PM  

At 2:30 AM my time, my new kitty (Less than one pound.) woke me up. She sat up on the bed and made an aggressive squeal. She then lept off the bed and left the master bedroom. I then heard a loud growl from the spare bedroom. I put on slippers and turned on the lights. She had a large , golden, feral cat trapped in the spare bedroom (A five or more pounder.) The intruder had climbed the outside wall to the third floor balcony and come in for an explorarion. After some shrewd maneuvers on my part, the large feline left. I needed coffee and turned on the internet. Your article scares me more than the mighty kitten scared the big critter.
Sent to:
http://vidrebel.wordpress.com/2012/12/06/update-on-the-louisiana-sinkhole-new-madrid-and-california-earthquakes/#comments

Anonymous JI December 06, 2012 8:29 PM  

That guy Hartmann sounds like one of those idiots who tries to force every argument or concept into the framework of Democrat vs Republican. He comes across as very boorish.

Anonymous Michael Maier December 06, 2012 8:44 PM  

Some of our resident Canucks will dispute that, "just another steve".

Anonymous Jack Amok December 06, 2012 10:03 PM  

a plebiscite, which is by popular vote of those wishing to seceed from the jurisdiction and control of an existing government.

Seems an unworkable definition. By it, the plebicite always wins 100%-0 because those not "wishing to seceed" aren't invited to the vote. No, no, there needs to be a more sensible way. Some hypotheticals to help illustrate the problems and maybe provide answers.

1) The State of Texas holds a plebicite, and 51% say leave while 49% say stay. Are the 49% just SOL? That's a pretty thin margin on which to make major alterations in the law. Secession would of necessity require the creation of a new Constitution for the new State. Seems like that would be a way for a temporary majority to worm their way around Constitutional (let's assume there exists one that is actually followed for the sake of argument) protections. Should secession require a supermajority to change the fundamental aggreements people have made with each other?

2) The State of Texas votes to secede, but several blue counties immediately demand the right to secede from Texas, followed by portions of each blue county demanding to secede from the county. At what point are the patches in the patchwork too small to secede from?

3) The State of Texas votes to secede, but a New Yorker owns valuable real estate in Texas. How are his property rights protected?

4) There are not enough votes in the State of Washington to secede from the US as a state, can the folks in Eastern Washington secede on their own? Can they demand the right to link up with Eastern Oregon, Northern California, Idaho, Montana, the Dakotas and Wyoming to form Transmontania?

Anonymous just another steve December 06, 2012 11:48 PM  

As a resident Canuck myself, I've had some dealings with the Canadian health system - it's not perfect, but it's not the bureaucratic disaster portrayed in the US media either.

Blogger IM2L844 December 06, 2012 11:50 PM  

I suspect that the banking system will start turning screws if it ever looks like there is is real chance of Texas seceding.

Anonymous Rex Little December 06, 2012 11:53 PM  

I'd love to see a story set in an alternate history where the South was allowed to peacefully secede in 1860. (Many have been written where the South won the Civil War, but none that I know of where the war wasn't fought.)

Would the U.S. and the Confederacy develop the kind of friendly relationship we have with Canada, or would they be often on the brink of war?

A great many men who died in the Civil War would in this alternate live full lives. What effects would that have on society and the economy?

How much longer would slavery last in the Confederacy?

Would the two countries get involved in WWI? On the same side, or opposite ones?

Anonymous FP December 07, 2012 12:24 AM  

Bah, forget Gandhi. Look at W Virginia. Lincoln had no problem bending the rules there. Thats what made Thom's Scotland/Texas rant even more silly.

Anonymous FP December 07, 2012 12:29 AM  

Rex, look up Turtledove's "How Few Remain". Lincoln ends up as a socialist agitator. I don't remember if things were settled by war or peace.

Anonymous 11B December 07, 2012 1:41 AM  

Many myths get started for political purposes and have to be debunked to prevent further contamination of young minds. In recent memory two prominent ones are, a) blacks serve in disproportionate numbers in the combat arms, and thus pay the heaviest price in our wars, and b) religion, especially Christianity, is responsible for more wars and deaths than anything else.

Those myths have since been debunked and you don't hear them much anymore. We know the combat arms are overwhelmingly white, and we know the atheists Marxists top the killer list.

Now comes this myth that Red states are welfare queens and Blue states pay most of the taxes. I request a post sometime where we can flesh out this myth.

Anonymous Double Agent + 1/2 December 07, 2012 2:54 AM  

No matter what you believe, your government believes it should be stocking up on ammo, foods, body bags, underground bunkers here and there, etc... and control.

It believes that what you believe is irrelevant.

Anonymous mitchell heisman December 07, 2012 5:28 AM  

"In Minnesota. So… you really don’t have a dog in this fight. Doesn’t that diminish your credibility somewhat in making these kind of statements?"

lmao, one would think that a neutral party would have more credibility....

"30 years before that, the secessionist states were the New England states"

interesting.

The Civil War was Anglo-Saxon aggression against theSouthern Norman Yoke. They had to pounce on theNorman-Cavaliers before they became uncontrollable. In aworld-historical reversal of fortunes, the Anglo-Saxonsbecame conquerors of the Normans. This was the racialjustice meted out by the U.S. Civil War.The triumph of Lincoln the Conqueror in the Civil War issingle greatest reason that America became an Anglo-Saxon“nation”. Some surely indulged in Schadenfreude whenwitnessing the great Norman race reduced to equality withtheir former slaves. This is how the Anglo-Saxons conqueredthe Conquest in America. And this is how white folk acrossAmerica became “Anglo-Saxon”.

Anonymous ericcs December 07, 2012 6:20 AM  

My prediction (and not altogether off-topic):
With the advent of the corrupt anti-American Obama once again in office, in three years or less China will provoke an incident with the U.S. Navy over some territorial dispute (Spratleys, Senkaku, et al). The result will be a very large hole in a U.S. carrier, followed by a huge realignment of opinion in Southeast Asia and adjacent nations. (BTW, I live in this part of the world, I know what's going to happen).

The U.S. military will immediately devolve into a total state of confusion, aided and abetted by their LGTBF mindset. With no subsequent worries about military retribution, that will then be the perfect time for Texas and other states to declare independence and secede from the USSA.

Regarding the strawmen put up by 'Jack Amok', the solution is simple: those who don't support secession are required to leave ASAP, including all ethnics who believe down to the depths of their dna in equality instead of meritocracy. Bye bye, folks, don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Blogger James Dixon December 07, 2012 6:37 AM  

> Secession would of necessity require the creation of a new Constitution for the new State.

Do I really need to point out that Texas already has a constitution?

> At what point are the patches in the patchwork too small to secede from?

That matter has long been covered by the local laws of annexation and incorporation.

> How are his property rights protected?

The same way they are now, by the government of Texas.

> ...can the folks in Eastern Washington secede on their own?

Again, the local laws of annexation and incorporation would apply. The only problem might be where the various local laws disagreed.

Blogger James Dixon December 07, 2012 6:40 AM  

> Ain't no one in Canada going bankrupt because they get sick, or dying because they can't afford insurance, or having coverage (and therefore care) refused because they have a pre-existing condition.

True. Now, dying because the required treatment is determined not to be cost effective or because it can't be provided in the necessary time frame, those are distinct possibilities.

Blogger LP 999/Eliza December 07, 2012 7:16 AM  

Great interview!

Anonymous mapper December 07, 2012 8:23 AM  

Mr Green Man December 06, 2012 2:41 PM
"Mr. Hartmann comes across as a bigger ass in the transcript."

Impossible. Hartmansn's voice and affect are nails on a chalkboard. Kind of like that big-eared guy we know who lives in a big white house with a helicopter pad.

Blogger Son of Brock Landers December 07, 2012 1:27 PM  

There are federal laws about the territorial boundaires of the individual states. That could be interpreted to mean secession from a state is not allowed. The key to any secession move is to explicitly state that all people are freely allowed to emigrate to other states or back to the USA if they want to.

From what I hear, the states in New England have a glut of housing, have high average ages, and are seeing their school enrollments drop. Ity might be good to relocate some vibrancy from secession states to Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont and Rhode Island.

Anonymous Rex Little December 08, 2012 12:58 AM  

FP, I've read that book. It's the start of a long series (ten or so books, IIRC) set in an alternate history where the South won the Civil War and maintained its status as an independent country. The U.S. and the Confederacy fight each other in WWI and WWII, and the CSA even has a Hitler-equivalent running them in the latter.

But that's not what I was talking about in my post. Turtledove wrote about the South winning the Civil War; I want to read about an alternate history where the war was never fought.

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