by Spencer Pearson
What would have happened if Romney had won the recent presidential election? Let us remember that the margin, at least in the popular vote was 2.8%, so this is hardly an unthinkable proposition. It’s a fairly safe bet that there would be a fairly substantial debate going on right now as to how much racism played a part in Obama’s defeat. There would undoubtedly be a general gnashing of teeth among progressives about the forthcoming horrors of a Republican presidency. And we can be absolutely sure there would have been no end of progressives out there pointing to the slim margin of victory and shouting about “democratic legitimacy”; lack thereof.
The progressives of America celebrated Obama’s first victory with a sinister Nuremberg style torch lit rally on the National Mall. This time, probably because of the closeness of the result, they have been less inclined to public celebration. Thus they have been available to comment on the wave of secession petitions which have been launched by disgruntled GOP fans.
The first thing which struck me reading through some of these responses was the sudden bellicosity of progressives and their amazing new found belief in the sacredness of the democratic process and the indivisibility of the USA. I don’t recall much of that during the Bush years. Jason Linkin’s over at the Huffington Post had this to say.
“As you may have heard, residents in most of these United States have used the “We The People” online petition …… to file requests to secede from country in the wake of the presidential election, because apparently not everybody got what they wanted out of America’s traditional participatory democracy.” “Since that date , states opting for secession have a 100% failure rate in splitting from the Union, and that dismal record was amassed long before the United States had a fleet of aerial drone weapons that could be piloted by remote control.
The progressive infatuation with the Drone as the answer to all problems appears to be extending to the domestic sphere. A remarkable turnaround from the days when they feared the Patriot Act marked the end of American Liberty.
However the main response of the progressives seems to be something along the lines of “we’d be better off without these (insert favoured stereotypical ethnic/cultural slur here) because they cost us money!” A poster at the Democratic Underground put it like this.
“Those guys [Republican governors] work with budgets every day, and they know goddamn well their states would utterly collapse if they didn’t have federal transfer money coming in. The money that the blue states are taxed, and willingly give to them as part of the Union’s sacred compact.”
Floyd Elliot at the Huffington Post expressed the same sentiment.
“For decades, we’ve known that the blue states subsidize the red, that citizens of blue states tend to pay more to and receive less from the federal government than their fellow citizens in red states. They get benefits; we get taxed.”
I find this a particularly surprising reaction following the wailing that met the “47% statement” made by Romney during the election campaign. After which every shade of progressive were falling over themselves to point out that not paying Income Tax is not the same as paying no tax and that the monetary value of a citizen to the state was not a reflection of their value to society.
Looking at a map of the election results by county it struck me that about 80% of the territory of the US was “red”. I would suggest that if these areas did secede from the USA considerable economic opportunities in mineral and particularly water rights would probably see them survive economically. Texas in particular would seem to be amply blessed with natural resources which would see it do very nicely in a post Union future.
More to the point a celebrated counter-secession petition reads:
“Force all states to pay their portion of the national debt before they can secede from the union”
Which is at least some acknowledgement that rather than “blue states subsidising red” it more be more accurate to note that “The PRC is subsidising red states more than it is blue states”. The logic of the progressives here seems to be that if the conservatives don’t want to join the rest of America in its Banzai charge into economic debt oblivion then they can damn well pay off their share of the money they didn’t want to borrow in the first place first. Otherwise they had better STFU.
However for all the vitriol and triumphalism of the progressive blogosphere perhaps there is an underlying recognition that perhaps divorce might be mutually advantageous. Floyd finishes his article with this.
“So, yes, please, let the Free Republic Of Racistan (formerly the state formerly known as Texas — because doesn’t that name sound a little… Hispanic to you?) go its own way, and let the secessionists who live among us hit the road down there…”
The cynical might put this down to the kind of threat usually employed by wife beaters; “you’d be NOTHING without me!” but the more generous might be inclined to see it as a genuine sentiment. After all, high as the progressives might be on victory at the moment the reality is Obama’s plans are likely to be severely impeded by the Republican House of Representatives. The Republican resistance and the need to placate its voters to at least some extent can only slow the Democrats program of creating a liberal enlightened utopia. Ultimately what do the Democrats get in return other than costly wasteland states full of creationist racist hicks?