Main | Thursday, January 24, 2008

Balkanizing America

Good Magazine has a fascinating article on the secession movement hitting some parts of the United States:
On October 3, 2007, delegates to the second North American Secessionist Convention met for two days in Chattanooga, Tennessee, to discuss how to crack the United States into manageable parts. They came representing 11 rebel groups in 36 states, under banners such as the Republic of Cascadia (wedding Oregon and Washington), Independent California (forging the world’s fifth-largest economy), the United Republic of Texas (returning the Lone Star State to its lonesomeness), the League of the South (uniting the states of old Dixie), and, spearhead of the effort, the Second Vermont Republic (separating Vermont from the United States). The dominant thought among the delegates was that what they call "the U.S. experiment” had failed. "What we have today in the combination of big business and big government is nothing less than fascism," Thomas Moore, the delegate from the Southern National Congress Committee, told the assembled. Dexter Clark, the white-bearded vice chair of the Alaskan Independence Party, was less cerebral: "No one ever fought a war for dependence," Clark said. "The people of Alaska are fed up—if ever there was a time ripe for change, this is it." The United States, the message in sum went, must end. It would have to be reborn smaller if the American dream was to have a hope in hell.
There have been various secession movements as long as the country has existed (I particularly enjoyed Key West's 1982 "secession" to become The Conch Republic), but the movement seems to have grown much louder in recent years. I wonder why?

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