Sunday, January 2, 2011

Will Texas Secede?

Do the States have a right to secede from the Union? Before 1865, most people thought they knew the answer to that question. These folks would have answered in the affirmative. After all, the Federal Government existed only because the States created it. The various States ceded certain powers to the new Federal Government, reserving the rest for themselves or the people.  If a State could vote to join the Union, it could just as easily vote to secede from the Union, or so people thought. Think of the Constitution as a kind of contract.  If one party to a contract continues to break the rules of the contract, does not the other party have the right to leave the relationship the contract sets up?  But since the Confederate States of America did not win the ensuing war, most people have felt that the Union represents a kind of California Hotel: "you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave."

If we look at the Constitution as a kind of contract wherein certain specific powers are granted to the Federal Government, while leaving all others to the Sovereign States or the People, what do we do when the Federal Government exceeds its authority, knowingly and repeatedly?  What do we do when, while doing so, the Federal Government claims through its courts that it is not breaking the Constitution?  Texas has gone to Federal court, and hopes that it can get a fair hearing.  But you can already see the problem, though.  The Federal courts are naturally going to be inclined to side with the Federal Government.  The 17th Amendment, which provided for the direct election of Senators, severely weakened any voice the States might have had in the appointment of Federal judges, or in recalling those judges.  So, where does a State go to get justice?

We may be about to test the theory that when a State perceives that the Federal Government has overstepped its Constitutional authority, it has the right to secede again. The Texas Nationalist Examiner has an article urging such considerations on the State legislature at Texas is down to last option: Independence. Of course, Texas has options still, but they are growing slimmer.  But first recall the words of the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
The 111th Congress rejected passing Cap and Trade legislation, despite having a majority of Democrats in both Houses, and a Democratic Administration who is committed to Cap and Trade.  Most Administrations would take this as a strong indication that there may be problems with the notion of Cap and Trade, and go back to the drawing board.  But this Regime decided to have its EPA illegally write the Cap portion of the regulations, and proceed to impose them.  Now, this isn't the only issue that Texas has with the US, but it may be seen as the final straw.

If Texas does decide to test the secessionary waters, it is entirely possible that Arizona and New Mexico might decide to secede as well, and join Texas.  Louisiana might well follow.  Would the US go to war again to maintain the Union?  What if Texas independence spurred a similar move in Alaska?  The conditions in 1860 and 2011 are not the same, and Texas could theoretically make a go of it as an independent nation. One wonders what threat Texas might be if it became independent and made a oil cartel treaty with Mexico, Venezuela, and Brazil?  It should be noted that Texas today has a well developed port facility, miles of coastline, the Eastern half of the State is good crop land.  Freed from the overbearing regulations of the Federal Government, it is possible that Texas would soon be the place to be for someone with ambition and a drive to make something of himself-kind of like the US used to be.  I can hear Davy Crockett in my ear saying "Ya'll can go to hell, I'm going to Texas."

1 comment:

  1. great article! Now only if it were to come true. I've love for the Southern states to secede again and protect states' rights. Arizona and New Mexico are welcome to join.