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OK, a lot of unhappy losers of the election want their state to file for secession.  There is obviously no legal way for this to currently be done.  Actually the idea is just plain stupid.

It would take a constitutional convention or a constitutional amendment to legally allow such an event.  Either way it would take 3/4 of the states and that change is not likely to happen.

However, let's just stop and think about the possibility and the mechanics behind a state leaving the union peacefully to become its own "country."

If a state was legally and peacefully allowed to leave the union, I have the following questions which show why it is actually impossible to leave the union in the modern world with how inextricably intertwined we are.

I have to admit I am thinking about asking these questions to a Texas resident since they seem to be at the forefront of this, but these questions would apply to any state:

1. What would happen to your citizen's Social Security benefits?  Their Medicare?  Their housing assistance?  Their Food Stamps? Their government contracts? Their VA benefits?

2. What would happen to all the military bases in your state?  What would happen to your state's residents who were in the US military?  Would they immediately be out of a job?

3.  What currency would you use?  What would happen to your residence who have money in banks outside your state?  Who would set your exchange rate? What about credit cards issued from outside your "country?"  Would they charge a foreign transaction fee every time the card was used like they do now when you use a credit card in another country?

4. Would you have any treaties with the United States?  Would you allow travel to the US?  What if the US, upset you left, banned your citizens from travel into the US?

5.  What about the interstate highway system?  Would you have the money to maintain those roads?

6.  What about airplane flight?  Would you be allowed to fly over the US.  Would the US be allowed to fly into your "country?"  What if the US was so mad you left and wanted to make sure no one else ever left they embargo your country like Cuba?

7.  What would happen to all the people who work in federal jobs?  Without federal funds contributed to your unemployment compensation fund how would you handle any of your people out of work?

8.  What would happen to bankruptcy courts and other federal courts?  What about the federal prisons in your state?

9.  Would you still be party to all treaties the US had entered before you left?

10.  Would you have an army and navy?  How would you pay for it?  Would you be allowed to have nuclear weapons?

11.  What about all the post offices?  Who would deliver your mail?  Would you have to pay international rates to send a letter to your family in another state?  How would you pay for your postal system?

12.  What about telephone and internet access?  Would you still be allowed free access to the infrastructure?

13.  What about railroads that ship most goods?  Would trains leaving your "country" be freely allowed into the US?  Would you have to pay duties and imposts on those imports?

14. What would happen to the national parks in your state?  The land isn't yours anyway so does it stay with the US?

15. Would you be a member of the UN?  Would you have an ambassador to the US, Canada, Mexico, the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Russia or others?  How could you pay for this?  What would it cost?

16. Would you require passports to enter your country?  What would border patrol cost you?  Would you issue visas to residence of third world countries?  Who would process them?

17.  Without any federal funds at all for anything how much would you have to raise taxes?

18. Without the FDA and USDA who would keep your food and drug supply safe and secure?  What would this cost?  What rules and regulations would you adopt?

19.  Without the FAA and the TSA who would keep your airports safe, your airplanes safe, regulate pilots, assure regular maintenance?  What would this cost?  What rules and regulations would you adopt?

20.  Without the Department of Transportation who would set rules and regulations for automobile safety?  What would this cost?  What rules and regulations would you adopt?

21. Does your state even raise enough food to feed itself or do you import food from the Midwest? Do you produce enough clothing for everyone or is that imported?  Do you have enough construction materials or are those imported?  What happens to the costs of these items when they are imported and costs more because of this?

It is clear to see that even if the constitution allowed for the peaceful secession of a state such an idea is nearly impossible.  I wonder why the people in the media who report on these stories never seem to ask any of these basic questions?  Why does the media even give the time of day to such an idiotic idea?



Even if succession was allowed legally and peacfully is it practically impossible in the modern world?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Lots of good points (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, CS11, historys mysteries

    #4 - residence = residents ?

    ...Son, those Elephants always look out for themselves. If you happen to get a crumb or two from their policies, it's a complete coincidence. -Malharden's Dad

    by slowbutsure on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 12:58:54 PM PST

  •  The media thinks the seccessionitas are jokers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    So they are laughing at these idiots.

    I guess the media will only take them seriously of the jokers take them selves seriously and ACTUALLY TAKE STEPS TO SECEDE.

    Meanwhile lets ignore the fucking racists.

  •  What is two weeks in internet time? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    yet another liberal, cachola

    BTW - 'Succession' is the act or process of following in order or sequence.

    Disclaimer: If the above comment can possibly be construed as snark, it probably is.

    by grubber on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 01:03:38 PM PST

  •  Secession (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, historys mysteries, splashy, page394

    You miss the point.  They don't want, won't have any of those darn regulations, taxes and stuff.  It's every MAN for himself.

    •  And the girls and women would be owned (0+ / 0-)

      Considering what Texas is like.

      Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

      by splashy on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 07:42:31 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This would be a fascinating social experiment (4+ / 0-)

    Would the residents of the state actually want less regulation and the market to take of everything, or when the rubber meets the road would they actually realize that you need regulation, and that their talk is mostly bluster?

    I suspect they would try to privatize a lot of things and then would learn the hard--and tragic--way why you need regulation.

  •  The author of the diary (4+ / 0-)

    has to remember one thing.

    The people wanting to leave America don't care what you think, nor do they think as you do.

    For now, they're mad and wanting something.

    I've been mad, you've been mad... it means irrationally angry. Nothing is going to cure it.

    I look at it this way.
    The world changed. Women, minorities, LGBT, and other concepts they cannot accept have become mainstream.

    It's not my problem to appease them. I'm not going backward.

    Right now, we have a tremendous opportunity to use the GOP's childish antics as a great recruiting tool to bolster our ranks going forward.

    So many things are happening right now; the GOP has no clue what it means to "close ranks" and internalize issues. Or why.

    Not only should we have a 50 state strategy, we should have a 730 day campaign schedule. We got 'em right where we want 'em...

    Enagaged activism wins elections. 100 million words on liberal/progressive websites gets beat by one new GOP voter casting their vote.

    by Nebraska68847Dem on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 03:08:37 PM PST

  •  Would they have schools? Would (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    historys mysteries

    those schools teach spelling?

    The electoral college was my safety school.

    by Fiddler On A Hot Tin Roof on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 03:52:28 PM PST

  •  And Most Importantly.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marina, splashy

    How would you prefer to pay back your portion of the so troublesome Deficit that you were willing to run up during the Bush years.  The one that funded the Iraq invasion and the Medicare "doughnut hole"?

  •  All good questions (0+ / 0-)

    And I say that as someone who thinks that there needs to be a mechanism by which a region can separate itself from a nation-state, generally speaking.

    Those who support banning cocaine are no better than those who support banning cheeseburgers

    by EthrDemon on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 04:06:10 PM PST

  •  All of those questions present (0+ / 0-)

    ...issues that can be solved, and have been solved over the centuries.

    So many seem to approach this as though the territory leaving the Union is an enemy -- but that is not really the case. They are an ally. The new sovereign state will have a great deal in common with the rest of the Union -- a shared culture and geography for starters, and certainly trade and commerce.

    All that is required is attitude adjustment.

    A child of five would understand this. Send someone to fetch a child of five. -- Groucho Marx

    by Pluto on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 05:05:39 PM PST

    •  Exactly. (0+ / 0-)

      But most of the questions posed by the diarist, who apparently has not stuck around to respond, have clearly not been thought through.

      For example, as to #1, the funds paying those benefits are not sitting in a bank account in Washington, being paid out when needed.  They are instead collected from the citizens and turned around and sent right back out to the recipients.  Take Social Security, for example.  Rather than working Texas citizens sending their Social Security payroll deductions to Washington, the monies would be collected in Austin and paid out to Texas citizens.

      The possibilities and options make for very interesting intellectual exercises.  Too bad many seem unable to calmly discuss them.  Personally, the prospect of forcing citizens to remain associated if they choose not to is repugnant in that it seems highly akin to slavery.

      "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

      by Neuroptimalian on Fri Nov 23, 2012 at 02:49:55 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  "Akin to slavery" seriously? (0+ / 0-)

        So in your mind making any person conform to society's norms, like, say abiding by speed limits, or food safety, of not stealing, is also akin to slavery?

        There is no mechanism to "force citizens to remain associated." individuals can emigrate easily, and without impediment (other than paying up your debts), from the US, and affiliate with another government.

        Secession, is not about the citizens, but the government that those citizens use to advance the common good. Fortunately, (or unfortunately for the misguided), our system of government does not allow for what the "New Secessionists" want.

        •  Enforcing laws to protect the public safety ... (0+ / 0-)

          is entirely different from forcing an association that Texans, for example, might find repugnant.  Besides, who's going to "force" them?  Is Obama prepared to order Army soldiers to go fire on them?  What would he do when most of them desert?  Are democrats going to join the military in droves to make up for the missing and take up arms?  Hardly.

          "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

          by Neuroptimalian on Fri Nov 23, 2012 at 01:09:22 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  There are people that believe they have the right (0+ / 0-)

            to sell what what ever they want to whom ever they choose. They are "forced" to behave differently, or jailed.

            As for "forcing an association with Texans" what does that mean? Forcing individual's to attend meetings of the US senate? Forcing them to abide by the laws of the country?

            An individual can easily disassociate from the United States, a state can't.

      •  Texas could establish its own social security (0+ / 0-)

        system for the future, but what about seniors who are now getting their benefits?  What would happen to an 80 year old widow who depends on her US social security check to survive?  

        Maybe the US agrees to keep paying benefits to those receiving them, but I doubt it unless Texas also agrees to keep paying in.

        •  The 80-year old woman ... (0+ / 0-)

          would get her check next month from what Texas citizens would pay to Austin (Texas' capital) this month (assuming secession) instead of paying it to Washington.  Social Security is presently paid by money coming in to Washington month to month from workers across the country, it's not paid out of any existing account holding millions of dollars.  The money that should be sitting in such an account was taken out years ago and used to pay for other things by the government.  

          "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

          by Neuroptimalian on Fri Nov 23, 2012 at 01:03:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  some friends have bought the Texas can secede (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    historys mysteries, gffish, Nova Land, cfm

    argument ... even to the point that they are insisting that they  have seen it in writing ..

    Well, I checked out the agreement for the annexation of Texas as a state and there is not one word of allowing secession, although there is that interesting clause regarding making Texas five states ...

    When Texas passed an act of secession in 1861, there was no mention made of any such agreement that Texas could secede if she wanted ...
    and there is an 1869 court ruling regarding secession ..and it seems that after the Civil War, the Congressional act recognizing Texas as state with all the benefits of being in the Union.. that act negated the splitting up Texas (damn!!!!)

    in short, any state may secede BUT ( this rear-end butt is bigger than Romney's ego!) only if all 50 states agree to the secession (or by a successful revolution)   ...

    So yes, states may secede, but only if everyone agrees ... which means Mississippi is sh!t out  of luck, because  it's the worst in everything good  and number one in everything negative ..and no other state wants to get stuck with that position!  

    I am absolutely appalled by how ignorant people in this country are over the most simple basic concepts of the Constitution ... they quote the Declaration like it's the Divine Word of God (and I will grant that some ideas in it are worthy of being called divine) ... but the Declaration is not the law of the land ..the Constitution is ...

    This diarist has written a really good diary, but it takes intelligence to read and I think that is a virtue that has been outlawed in some states (guess which!)  ...

    If Texas was to pull out of the Union (let's play let's suppose) .. it has a long border to defend, plus several strategic military bases would be shut down, bankrupting the communities they are in ... although the local one here, Ft Bliss, the world's largest air defense post could easily be designated part of New Mexico ... all the Pell Grants and student loans would stop ... and one of the longest borders in the world be the sole responsibility of Texans .. good luck with that one!  

    I really wish the President would address this .. I know that shouldn't be necessary, but it is going to be the new birth certificate issue .. So, please President Obama, go on TV and tell the numbskulls exactly what happens when all those federal military dollars go to other states ...and those federal non-military dollars do likewise ...

    Give your heart a real workout! Love your enemies!

    by moonbatlulu on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 06:14:53 PM PST

  •  Clearly, it's "shoot first, aim later" (0+ / 0-)

    The only serious thought them ol' secessionist wannabes have is that they're seriously pissed off at something or other.

  •  They Already left the Union (0+ / 0-)

    Certainly in a Mental and Emotional Sense.

    Just Listen to the Words they Speak.

    They are living in a Separate Reality where "Facts" don't Matter.

    Well, So Be It.

    It would be nice if WE could sit around and Wait for them
    to Catch up, But WE can't afford to Do that.

    On Giving Advice: Smart People Don't Need It and Stupid People Don't Listen

    by Brian76239 on Fri Nov 23, 2012 at 04:10:20 AM PST

  •  They don't want to leave, they want us to (0+ / 0-)

    They can't get out of that Lazyboy to get the remote much less pack up and leave.  What in the world would they do without the social security, the medicare, the mortgage tax homestead exemption, even the child earned income tax credit?  Are you kidding me.  They do not want to seceed.  They want to rant and control and rant is about all they got and even that to a degree is being ignored.  John McCain....Poster child for what crazy talk looks like in power.   Crazy talk on the radio is Rush and Fox inciting the whole thing,  

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Fri Nov 23, 2012 at 07:43:57 AM PST

  •  The reason I said pack and leave...the state they (0+ / 0-)

    are residing does not necessarily want to secede.  The crazies are sprinkled all across the 50 states but especially in my native south.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Fri Nov 23, 2012 at 07:46:08 AM PST

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