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Dixie

H/T Jackson and Pat

DiLorenzo on secession:

“The U.S. has become one giant plunder-seeking society whereby the “net tax consumers” now outnumber the “net taxpayers.” About half of all working adults pay no federal income tax but collect government handouts. They are therefore a very reliable voting block for endlessly increasing the income taxes on the productive, taxpaying class. This will only get worse.”

Was Brown v. Board a failure?

“After half a century, America’s efforts to end segregation seem to be winding down. In the years after Brown v. Board of Education, 755 school districts were under desegregation orders. A new Stanford study reports that as of 2009, that number had dropped to as few as 268.

The study is the first to take a comprehensive look at whether court-ordered busing successfully ended the legacy of Jim Crow in public education, and it suggests a mission that is far from accomplished. On average, those districts that stopped forcing schools to mix students by race have seen a gradual but steady–and significant–return of racial isolation, especially at the elementary level.”

Is secession legal?

“With all fifty states offering petitions to the central government to leave the Union, the legality of secession is now front page news in the United States. Can a state legally secede from the Union? Many, including Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia, suggest no. In a 2006 letter, available here, Scalia argued that a the question was not in the realm of legal possibility because 1) the United States would not be party to a lawsuit on the issue 2) the “constitutional” basis of secession had been “resolved by the Civil War,” and 3) there is no right to secede, as the Pledge of Allegiance clearly illustrates through the line “one nation, indivisible.”

25 Comments

  1. Re: brown vs Board, barring coerced association, which the current court will not support, there is nothing that they can do.

  2. I’m sorry, Mr. W., I simply can not take that DiLorenzo piece seriously. As I said to you the other day, the English political tradition and its American offshoot have no meaningful notion of tyranny. It’s just hot air, blather.

    “Secession and nullification – or the threat thereof – were held to be essential tools in disciplining the central state ….”

    “The Hamiltonian nationalists, however, waged a decades-long propaganda war to rewrite history in order to achieve their objective of consolidating all political power at the national level, thereby destroying America’s constitutional republic and turning it into a militaristic, corporatist empire.”

    “The new Hamiltonian regime would become an unlimited democracy “of the people, by the people, for the people.” It would not be an American democracy, however, with most governmental decisions being made in a decentralized system dominated by the people of the states and localities.”

    Every one of the passages I just quoted is from the DiLorenzo piece. Anyone who can read tripe of that kind for the 10,000 time without going to sleep needs medical attention. Why would I be offended by a “central state” if it secured my property rights? Why are the governments of the “states and localities” my friends if my fellow white men, in local and state elections, keep voting my money into their pockets? I don’t want protection from a “central state”; I don’t care whether or not I’m in a “constitutional republic” (whatever that is). I want my property protected. My enemy is not the government: my enemy is my fellow citizens, most of whom are white and from whom I expect the government–a properly constituted government, that is–to protect me. The Founding Father were fools, who, in, I must say it, typical English style, spent five month meeting and talking and reseting “tyranny”–and accomplishing nothing.

  3. If we are not living under a “tyranny,” the word is meaningless.

    You’re a graduate of Auburn University, right? You’re familiar with the term “reading comprehension.” I didn’t say we’re not living under tyranny. I said nothing in the DiLorenzo piece–and nothing I’ve encountered here, at Occidental Dissent–has identified the nature of that tyranny. It doesn’t have to do with the comparative strength of “the central state” and “the states and localities.” It has to do with our laws–whether federal, state, or local.

  4. Are you talking about the bloated civil code, the one in which you can’t fart or sigh without being taxed or committing some kind of felony?

  5. An agreement of the states, via congress, as well as consitutional convention are two ways to legally secede.

    So, yes, a state can legally secede, but not unilaterally. We call such mutual splits Partition.

  6. Are you talking about the bloated civil code, the one in which you can’t fart or sigh without being taxed or committing some kind of felony?

    Jim — I’m talking about all of it. I’m talking about the basic fact that the U.S. Constitution does not protect property and does not require the individual states and their constituent localities to protect property.

    Do you think Obamacare is tyranny? I do. How about Romneycare, which, I gather, is some kind of government-run medical program in Massachusetts? Do you consider that tyranny, too? I do. If every one of the fifty states were to have something like Romneycare, would you say to yourself, “Oh, this isn’t tyranny. After all, it was enacted at the state level. It’s tyranny only when it’s enacted at the Federal level–at the level of the horrible ‘central state.'” I doubt you would say that, because it would make no sense; but that’s essentially the rhetoric– the America porn–that’s engaged in by this DiLorenzo and Rush Limbaugh and the Republican Party. “Oh–we’re not opposed to a government-run medical system; we just think it should be done at the state level. After all, this is a constitutional republic.”

    What the heck does that mean? All of these things–Social Security, Medicare, Obamacare, welfare, government-backed student loans–are constitutional. They’ve all been enacted by presidents and legislators who were voted into office. They’re not inconsistent with a “constitutional republic.”

    What has Mr. W. been distressed about for the past month-and-a-half? Answer: the fact that Northern whites voted for Obama in numbers sufficient to bring about his reelection. And now–what does Mr. W. complain about? Answer: the “tyranny” in Washington. The problem isn’t “the government in Washington”; it’s your fellow citizens, including a high number of your fellow white men. The Constitution gave them a chance to vote for Obama–which means to vote for Obamacare, which means to vote your money into their pockets–AND THEY TOOK IT.

    Do you enjoy this blog? I do. Do you think there are persons–liberals–who don’t enjoy it, who wish it would go away? I’d bet there are. Suppose the guarantee of freedom of speech were not in the Constitution. Suppose, in other words, that the Constitution treated speech the same way it treats property: it’s up for a vote, all the time. In other words: if a President says, in a campaign speech, “If elected, I’ll shut down Occidental Dissent,” and he wins, well, goodbye, Ocidental Dissent. How long do you think this blog would last? Are “the people” your friends? Are your fellow citizens your friends? Would you feel secure in your right to say and write and read and listen to whatever you’d like, if it were constantly put up to a vote, the way your wallet is. Some brainless Hillary-Clinton-type stands up at a township council meeting and says, “I think we need a community swimming pool.” Does anyone stand up and say, “What are you talking about? If you and other persons in this room want a swimming pool, you’ll have to pay it for yourself. That’s the law.” No, nobody says that–because it’s NOT the law. Now that she’s said it, you have to waste your time and energy struggling and hoping and campaigning to prevent the passage of a resolution to build the swimming pool, just as countless persons struggled and hoped and campaigned–fruitlessly–to defeat Obama. In two years, that same woman, that emblem of “community involvement,” will be the head of the township council and will be coming up with more ways to spend your money. This is considered normal. What goes on in Washington is just the bigger version of it.

    PS Mr. W.: I apologize for my snide “reading comprehension” remark.

    PPS Thank God the Founding Fathers protected freedom of speech. I’ll give them credit for that.

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  8. In a 2006 letter, available here, Scalia argued that a the question was not in the realm of legal possibility because 1) the United States would not be party to a lawsuit on the issue 2) the “constitutional” basis of secession had been “resolved by the Civil War,” and 3) there is no right to secede, as the Pledge of Allegiance clearly illustrates through the line “one nation, indivisible.”

    Is this true? Is he really this low a character? Basing a legal argument on the pledge of allegiance, as if it has anything to do with anything? Basing an argument about the right of secession on who won a war?

  9. There are theoretical problems with secession. The arguments that justify the South leaving the union could also justify Atlanta seceding from Georgia, or Georgia seceding from New Dixie. Thus, founding a new nation based on secession principles could be problematic. Once you grant a right to secede, you open the door to states seceding from New Dixie over perceived grievances and forming their own nations or even rejoining the union.

  10. John B

    You still think the normal rules of politics are operational.

    That’s right, John; I fear they are. Under our present Constitution, nobody’s safe (either from the community swimming pool or Obamacare).

  11. @ John B

    If I understand your argument you believe that the people of a seceded state would be as irresponsible with their local or regional government as they are with the current federal government and therefore the complaint of federal tyranny is meaningless, or, more precisely, worthless. Correct?

    First of all, I would examine the stats on eligible voter participation at both the national and state level. I haven’t done this to any serious degree but I suspect that the long term trend sees less and less participation, and thus faith, in the system. My guess is that the people of separated states or regions would feel more politically empowered and a healthier sense of community, if only somewhat, would develop.

    Elected representatives would have to live a lot closer to their constituents and would therefore be less likely to ignore their interests. Talented media people that aren’t allowed in today’s MSM would be more likely to rise to demand. I certainly can’t see South Carolina trying to take over the world and importing its refugees en masse but I can see it working with its neighbors in their defense if necessary.

    There are many reasons why smaller is better, to a degree. I can’t think of a single one for the opposite, excepting the desires of the present tyrants. That said, I don’t see the individual states, as presently constituted, remaining completely independent. Regionalism, conglomeration of some nearby states with similar interests, as happened the first time, would almost certainly happen. While Texas could easily take care of itself I can see the rest of the old Confederacy, for example, divided into two or three regions. Or maybe not. Guesses, of course.

    Anyway, I’d be interested in knowing if I understood your case, and in your opinion of my suggestions.

  12. “… Scalia argued that a the question was not in the realm of legal possibility because 1) the United States would not be party to a lawsuit on the issue 2) the “constitutional” basis of secession had been “resolved by the Civil War,” and 3) there is no right to secede, as the Pledge of Allegiance clearly illustrates through the line “one nation, indivisible.”

    1) My wife sued me for divorce and I chose not to be a party to the suit. She divorced me anyway.

    2) As Tom Woods said, I suppose that Booth’s assassination of Lincoln “resolved” the “constitutional” basis of assassination.

    3) My jaw dropped as far on this one as did Svigor’s. And people wonder why Conservatism Inc. always loses.

  13. There are theoretical problems with secession. The arguments that justify the South leaving the union could also justify Atlanta seceding from Georgia, or Georgia seceding from New Dixie. Thus, founding a new nation based on secession principles could be problematic. Once you grant a right to secede, you open the door to states seceding from New Dixie over perceived grievances and forming their own nations or even rejoining the union.

    You say this like it’s a bad thing.

    2) As Tom Woods said, I suppose that Booth’s assassination of Lincoln “resolved” the “constitutional” basis of assassination.

    Lol, indeed.

    3) My jaw dropped as far on this one as did Svigor’s. And people wonder why Conservatism Inc. always loses.

    And just to be clear here, the pledge of allegiance was written by a socialist yankee in response to the war of northern aggression.

  14. There are theoretical problems with secession. The arguments that justify the South leaving the union could also justify Atlanta seceding from Georgia, or Georgia seceding from New Dixie. Thus, founding a new nation based on secession principles could be problematic. Once you grant a right to secede, you open the door to states seceding from New Dixie over perceived grievances and forming their own nations or even rejoining the union.

    @ Lew,

    As you say, these problems are theoretical. I don’t see them as big problems in actual practice. I’ll go with your examples:

    A city like Atlanta as a viable nation-state would not work. It would be too dependent on outside entities for its survival. Besides, the state of Georgia, or whatever governing district it had been a part of, wouldn’t allow it – although the larger body might find plenty of reason to treat it in some special, different way, if you get my lol. No one, in the city or in the larger body, would see it as practical, however much they might desire it. However, I see no problem with, say, the Atlanta area separating from Georgia or its larger entity in order to join, say, Tennessee. Heavy negotiations, for sure, but workable.

    The state of Georgia would be welcomed to secede from New Dixie anytime it so desired, IMO. It would never actually do it unless the overwhelming majority of the aristocracy in the state were completely convinced of its viability.

    As for rejoining the “union”, I foresee no unworkable problem there. It would be unlikely to occur without very good reasons. There are no guarantees that New Dixie will not become despotic.

    The thing is, the “United States” was itself founded on the principle of secession. Surely George III considered it illegal. I value the opinion of his government more than I value the opinion of the government of Antonin Scalia. So the precedent has already been set (which is why old Dixie was dumbfounded by and unprepared for the invasion of its territory).

    Remember, it took decades for the South to secede and it has taken almost two and a half centuries for a new generation to even think about it. These things are not decided lightly, and so are thus less likely to occur without long, practical consideration.

    While I don’t much care for “the founders'” craftsmanship anymore than did Patrick Henry I’m more than happy with their establishment of the principle of secession, for reasons other than their own. Jefferson’s romanticism was rightly an abjured concept in the South, from the beginning of “the great experiment” until the age of world wars, but use what we must.

  15. If I understand your argument you believe that the people of a seceded state would be as irresponsible with their local or regional government as they are with the current federal government and therefore the complaint of federal tyranny is meaningless, or, more precisely, worthless. Correct?

    That’s not quite the way I would have put it, Bill; but now that I think about it, yes, that’s pretty much what I’m saying. If I’d been living in Massachusetts when Romneycare was coming up for a vote, I’d have been hoping against the passage of it as much as I hoped against the passage of Obamacare. What good would that have done me? Romneycare passed, because the Constitution of Massachusetts doesn’t protect property any more than does the Constitution of the U.S. Wouldn’t you guess that there were Massachusetts residents who were hoping, hoping, hoping that Romneycare would not pass–and who are now stuck with it? What do they care whether the government that’s forcing them into it is in Boston or in Washington, D.C.?

    Let’s just suppose that the U.S. Constitution protected property from action by the Federal government but that it did not demand that the governments of the individual states protect property. In other words, Obamacare would be unconstitutional, but Romneycare wouldn’t. Let’s suppose, in addition, that every one of the other forty-nine states were to follow the lead of Massachusetts and enact something like Romneycare. (They’ve all constructed public school systems and state universities, haven’t they?) Would you be troubled by “despotic central government” in Washington? No–just the opposite: The problem would be despotic local government; you’d be working for a Constitutional amendment, at the Federal level, that would strengthen the central government’s ability to control the states (so that the states wouldn’t be able to enact things like Romneycare). All of this American-style denunciation of “central government,” “tyranny,” and so on has alway struck me as empty and evasive. Either you face the real questions–race and property–or you’re not saying anything.

    I hope that’s clearer. If it’s not, just let me know; I’ll try again.

  16. @ John B,

    I would suggest that it is almost impossible for a body of government to be less responsive to the wants of its citizens the nearer it is to those constituents, especially regarding race. I don’t know of any historical example of it, save possibly Massachusetts (who knows?). I see all present “US” state government tyranny as purely in compliance with orders from DC, under threat of loss of funds (this is how we get professional politicians, to “finesse” the deals).

    It’s impossible for me to imagine a situation where the more local government is so despotic as to cause its people to beg relief from a larger governmental body (again, save possibly Massachusetts) I know of examples of it in Europe but of course the late great USA bombed those malcontents to death.

    The ridiculous actions taken by the state governments have been enacted entirely due to federal pressure. As the states are not permitted to secede (according to the DC authority), they must comply with all federal regulations.

    I guess it all boils down to the question of who, exactly, crafts policy. In the so-called USA it is people who are not connected to us in any way. When the man in the next town over, however, becomes governor, it becomes a lot more personal than the present “governed from afar off”.

    As for race and property, who has any doubt that the Southern people, left to their own devices, would “aright” them to their own interest? And is this not a desirable thing?

  17. Thus, founding a new nation based on secession principles could be problematic. Once you grant a right to secede, you open the door to states seceding from New Dixie over perceived grievances and forming their own nations or even rejoining the union.”

    But isn’t this the very thing that the 13 Colonies DID agree to, back when they decided to form a (cough, hack) ‘more perfect union’? (I know, mixing metaphors- or speeches)

    Reading Woodard’s “American Nations” (thanks again, HW) I have come to realize that the tenuous attachment of the various COUNTRIES (rather than colonies) was merely to stand up to GB at the time- it was the forerunner of the EU, except in our colonial/country experiment, we all spoke English, and only grudgingly accepted our confederation as a nation…. the EU knew it was separate nations acting as IF they were ‘one COUNTRY’ – except Brussels actually now believes it, and Germany is acting as if they were New York, or something like that…

  18. Sorry, HW, no links to provide. I’m checking the others though. In the meantime, if you don’t mind –

    Yes, Fr. John, the alleged indivisible US Empire was founded on the theory that secession was a natural, God-given right. The indivisibility crap didn’t follow for another century. However, it seems that natural, God-given rights are only as good as the willpower and manpower that exists to enforce them (as skillfully pronounced by professional politician Abraham Lincoln in 1846).

    As for 2012 –

    IMO we should adopt a tactic of satire and ridicule at this point, and I can’t emphasize that enough. Neither baring racial reality nor hedging on the problems without poking Uncle Sam in his sunglassed eyes on all counts, including race, will suffice. It has to be stark but not outrageous, appealing but not bland, as if enticing the lady next door.

    If you sincerely desire secession, carefully consider salable tactics and approach your neighbors. Consider where they are likely coming from, emotionally. Let them know that no immediate action is required but that they should be prepared for the issue when it comes to a head. God help us, we must become salesmen.

    Uh hm, eh, cartoonists and other caricature portrayers would be a boon to our business. Any leads? Shall we go to Craig’s List? In the media age no drastic change has ever occurred without a thorough lampooning of the enemy.

  19. I would suggest that it is almost impossible for a body of government to be less responsive to the wants of its citizens the nearer it is to those constituents, especially regarding race.

    I’m not sure about that, Bill. Well, in the first place, as you know, I don’t want government that’s “responsive to the wants of its citizens.” That, as I’ve been saying, is what I fear. I want the government to secure property, no matter how many citizens would like property to be up for a vote. I don’t want my property or anyone else’s property up for a vote.

    It’s probably true that most of the disruption of property has taken place at the Federal level, not the state or local level, but I’m not sure that’s because of Washington’s physical distance. I’d bet there are quite a few Californians who regard Obamacare as in accord with their wants–or, at least, as a step in the right direction. The problems might just be Constitutional. It might simply be that those hostile to property regard action at the state level as pointless, because anyone who wants to avoid their socialistic laws can simply move out of any state where such laws are enacted; the socialistic program has to be pursued at the national level.

    You write that when “the man in the next town over, however, becomes governor, it becomes a lot more personal than the present ‘governed from afar off.'” I don’t know how much more personal it becomes, but I don’t see that it’s necessarily better. At this website, I keep hearing that the South has a culture distinct from that of the United States. Maybe that’s true; but if a good, local preacher becomes President of sovereign Alabama, there might be a few Alabamans who miss the day when the tyranny in faraway Washington guaranteed their freedom of speech, including their access to books about the theory of evolution.

  20. @ John B, in case you’re still checking this thread.

    Perhaps my wording is prone to unfortunate interpretation. By “responsive to the wants of its citizens” I meant “respectful of its citizens”, most of whom still want less government, in spite of a century of brainwashing, bribery and blackmail. At least this is the case in most of the South and in most ‘red states’ in general. Amazing, really, when you think about it.

    There are no more guarantees against smaller tyrannous states than against larger ones but I suggest that the larger and more powerful the state the more firm and resolute is the tyranny and that therefore size does make a difference. No government yet devised has been perfect in the eyes of all of its inhabitants.

    While Alabama could possibly become tyrannous within its borders, it is unlikely that it could ever pose a serious threat to its neighbors, much less spread its tyranny around the world only to bring that acquired power back to bare against its people. A nation the size of the old Confederacy, or even Texas, conceivably could, as the northeast has already, but I believe the interim period would give us all a new lease on life and would likely last quite a while. A breakup of the union or state secessions would probably keep people quite busy with their own welfare and on guard against encroachments on it by the likes of the current elites, from within or without. It should be the big wake-up moment of all wake-up moments we’ve been hoping for for over a century. Our people, loosely defined, seeing that the newly rediscovered principle of actual representation might possibly allow them to be heard, would thrive.

    I have a brother who despises the present system as much as I do but who could be handily elected as Governor of Florida tomorrow if the corrupt state government wasn’t a virtual slave of the even more corrupt federal empire. As it is he couldn’t get to first base. While he and I have some differences both practical and philosophical his errors would be revisable errors. He’s the least corruptible man I know. Have no fear, men of his quality would spring up like mushrooms in any newly separated state or region. They’re the leaders we’ve been looking for but who haven’t been allowed by the present system to do what they’re designed to do, to lead.

    Looking at the last 200 years in North America I see a direct correlation between states’ rights activism and ‘smaller is better’ (as much as is practical) activism. But if smaller tyranny still bothers you as much as large you might consider the opinion of someone I once knew online (I wish I had copied it word for word – it was better than I can phrase it), that he would rather be in a government with which he had many disagreements, that might even be tyrannous in its actions, than one in which he has no voice or effective representation and in fact deliberately governs against his interests.

    If nothing else, the gamble is worth it at this point. We know the union regime is killing us.

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