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Thread: Secession movements other than the Confederacy

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    Cyburbian Masswich's avatar
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    Secession movements other than the Confederacy

    Read an interesting article in the Sunday paper today about the War of 1812 and what a reckless venture it was for the USA at the time. Seems kind of like the Vietnam War of it's day other than the symbolic victory at New Orleans.

    One thing that was interesting about the article was the serious possibility that was discussed in Hartford in 1814 of New England seceding from the Union. Apparently it was a close call, New England had gone from being the birthplace of the revolution to more of a trading culture that just wanted peace to get on with life. And those who rejected secession in 1814 apparently became fervent supporters of a unified USA, so when the South seceded a generation later they would have none of it.

    What do you think about an alternative future with several countries where the USA is now? Would we all be Leninists? Were there other serious secession movements that I don't know about?

    Sometimes I wonder if all the political divisiveness in the US could have been avoided in such a future. On the other hand, we owe our prosperity in part to sticking together (more or less, and with the notable exceptions of Native Americans and Japanese-Americans during WWII.)

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Interesting thread topic. There seems to be a shortage of plausable alternative histories for a more divided North America. Generally, what's out there is along the lines of "Evil South Where Slavery Still Exists" versus "Industrial Juggernaut North".

    The strongest secession movement in the US, aside from "the South will rise again!" sentiments, seems to be in Hawaii.

    Many Texans seem to think of their state as something that's part of the US, but ... different. Kind of like the relationship of Quebec to the rest of Canada, only Texans speak the same language. One sign of this - some national brands have commercials for Texas that are much different than what the rest of the country sees.



    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

  3. #3
    Cyburbian jwhitty's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Masswich View post
    What do you think about an alternative future with several countries where the USA is now?
    I think the concept of states have become pointless and rather limiting. Cosmopolitanism is probably the only way to get ahead, at least in a capital growth based society. Multinational corporations have given way to supranational corps that don't answer to anyone. I'm of the opinion that we are moving towards Nelson and Lang's Megapolitan areas as the main benefactors of development, especially as energy and other resources become more expensive. Those areas outside of the megaregions are only going to be good for extraction economies.

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    Cyburbian stroskey's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    there was not a single car on the road other than when they needed to parallel park. i find that interesting...

    I've never understood what texas is about. Is it cosmopolitan Dallas, rural ranchers, or typical suburban families like everywhere else?
    I burned down the church to atone for my transgressions.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    Interesting thread topic. There seems to be a shortage of plausable alternative histories for a more divided North America. Generally, what's out there is along the lines of "Evil South Where Slavery Still Exists" versus "Industrial Juggernaut North".

    The strongest secession movement in the US, aside from "the South will rise again!" sentiments, seems to be in Hawaii.

    Many Texans seem to think of their state as something that's part of the US, but ... different. Kind of like the relationship of Quebec to the rest of Canada, only Texans speak the same language. One sign of this - some national brands have commercials for Texas that are much different than what the rest of the country sees.
    I agree with you on the strong state pride here in Texas; but they have regional commercials for a lot places:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8Er42IhNnU

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHt1LPbucr0

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9ILzeWZJo4

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    Don't forget Vermont! They have one of the oldest secessionist movements in the States, bolstered by the fact that they used to be their own republic. It will be interesting to see what happens there as they implement single payer healthcare. As it is, VT has a lot more in common culturally with the Quebecois than the larger American culture. It's certainly the most un-American place I've ever lived...and honestly, I think they've got the right idea most of the time. Their politics skew toward the equitable and sensible.

    I think if Vermont seceded, it could potentially trigger the secession of other Northern New England states with similarly radical ethics. And who knows what that could trigger?

    Also, New York City has had a strong secessionist movement for a long time. It wants to separate from New York state and become its own independent district or state...which makes a whole lot of sense because the policies coming down from Albany are pretty out of touch with the needs of the City, often favoring wealthy commuters from outlying suburbs (particularly when it comes to effective transportation policy).

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    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by iamthepinky View post
    Don't forget Vermont! They have one of the oldest secessionist movements in the States, bolstered by the fact that they used to be their own republic. It will be interesting to see what happens there as they implement single payer healthcare. As it is, VT has a lot more in common culturally with the Quebecois than the larger American culture. It's certainly the most un-American place I've ever lived...and honestly, I think they've got the right idea most of the time. Their politics skew toward the equitable and sensible.

    I think if Vermont seceded, it could potentially trigger the secession of other Northern New England states with similarly radical ethics. And who knows what that could trigger?

    Also, New York City has had a strong secessionist movement for a long time. It wants to separate from New York state and become its own independent district or state...which makes a whole lot of sense because the policies coming down from Albany are pretty out of touch with the needs of the City, often favoring wealthy commuters from outlying suburbs (particularly when it comes to effective transportation policy).
    Probably OT but Vermont has a serious problem on its hands with heroin addiction.

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    Cyburbian chupacabra's avatar
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    The AIP held the governor's chair in the 90s.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alaskan_Independence_Party

    The Alaskan Independence Party was originally founded with the goal of obtaining for Alaskans the right to vote on statehood. Referring to Alaska's 1959 admission to the union, the AIP charter states: "The Alaskan Independence Party's goal is the vote we were entitled to in 1958, one choice from among the following four choices:

    Remain a territory.
    Become a separate and independent country.
    Accept commonwealth status.
    Become a state.

    The call for this vote is in furtherance of the dream of the Alaskan Independence Party's founding father, Joe Vogler, which was for Alaskans to achieve independence under a minimal government, fully responsive to the people, promoting a peaceful and lawful means of resolving differences."[3]

    Since its founding, the AIP has radically changed with respect to the issue of secession. At present, it does not support secession though, at its founding, it did. In 1973 Joe Vogler began arguing about the validity of the Alaskan statehood vote. Early in that year, he began circulating a petition seeking support for secession of Alaska from the United States. Alaska magazine published a piece at that time in which Vogler claimed to have gathered 15,000 signatures in three weeks.

    Vogler has been quoted as stating "I'm an Alaskan, not an American. I've got no use for America or her damned institutions."
    Vogler:

    You get to think why the hell do I owe them anything and then you get mad; and you say to hell with them; and you renounce allegiance; and you pledge your efforts, your effects, your honor, your life, to Alaska; that is how I do it; I am an Alaskan; they know it; I've told them to go to hell in every way I can in a nice way; I took a case to the Supreme Court believing in the Supreme Court, but I'd rather be tried in a whorehouse with the madam as the Judge; there is more Justice in a whorehouse than in the Supreme Court; and if they don't like they know where they can go; ..... and if you think I am ever going to forget that, the fires of Hell are glaciers compared to my hate for the American Government, and I won't be buried under their damn flag; I'll be buried in Dawson and when Alaska is an independent nation they can bring my bones back to Alaska, back to my country.
    Fun Fact: I was once registered as an AIP voter.
    You can grow ideas in the garden of your mind.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian jresta's avatar
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    South Jersey wanted to become it's own state for awhile. It actually gained some traction in the Statehouse with some South Jersey reps.

    I'd probably add 2 nations and might tweak the boundaries a bit but I thought this was interesting and useful in terms of a jumping off point for a discussion on cultural-political boundaries in the US.
    http://www.tufts.edu/alumni/magazine...p-in-arms.html

    It should be interesting to see what happens with the upcoming referendum in Scotland and how things wind up coming to a head in Spain with the powerful (and growing) Catalan independence movement.

    I think, in the context of entities like the EU, single currency unions, NAFTA, etc that countries like the UK, Spain, the US, Canada, etc are redundant.
    Indeed you can usually tell when the concepts of democracy and citizenship are weakening. There is an increase in the role of charity and in the worship of volunteerism. These represent the élite citizen's imitation of noblesse oblige; that is, of pretending to be aristocrats or oligarchs, as opposed to being citizens.

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    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by iamthepinky View post
    Don't forget Vermont! They have one of the oldest secessionist movements in the States, bolstered by the fact that they used to be their own republic. It will be interesting to see what happens there as they implement single payer healthcare. As it is, VT has a lot more in common culturally with the Quebecois than the larger American culture. It's certainly the most un-American place I've ever lived...and honestly, I think they've got the right idea most of the time. Their politics skew toward the equitable and sensible.

    I think if Vermont seceded, it could potentially trigger the secession of other Northern New England states with similarly radical ethics. And who knows what that could trigger?

    Also, New York City has had a strong secessionist movement for a long time. It wants to separate from New York state and become its own independent district or state...which makes a whole lot of sense because the policies coming down from Albany are pretty out of touch with the needs of the City, often favoring wealthy commuters from outlying suburbs (particularly when it comes to effective transportation policy).
    I'm not sure where you are getting your info from, but I've lived most of my life in NYS, and there is absolutely no "strong secessionist movement" anywhere in NYS outside of the minds of some delusional individuals who want to tilt at windmills because they have more time on their hands than they have brain cells in their heads. Three rednecks drinking beers at the local American Legion bar and fantasizing about "Upstate" seceding from NYC or four hipsters smoking joints outside a Midtown club and rhapsodizing about how great Manhattan would be freed from Westchester and Long Island do NOT constitute "strong secessionist movement". Talk of "secession" from the rest of NYS is simply the rantings of individuals miffed because they can't get other New Yorkers to buy into their personal political agendas. Furthermore, this kind of secessionist nonsense circulates in most states, especially in those where there's a large population (and power) imbalance between various geographical areas.

    I personally don't think that Vermont is a particularly "un-American" place, whatever you mean by that, and New Hampshire and Maine definitely don't have "similarly radical ethics" IMO. I certainly wouldn't think that Vermont is that culturally similar to Quebec either, although people right along the VT/Quebec border might seem very similar.
    If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. -- John F. Kennedy, January 20, 1961

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    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    In 1850 James Strang, a contemporary of Bringham Young, pronounced himself King of the Beavers and tried to secede from Michigan and the U.S. The Beavers were inhabitants of Beaver Island (Get your mind out of the gutter!)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Strang
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

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    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    There always seem to be grumblings about the rest of Illinois wanting to make Chicago, Cook County, or the entire Chicago Metro Area its own state. I feel like the rest of Illinois would really suffer if they made the entire Chicago Metro Area its own state. However, if they made Chicago proper its own state, I actually think Chicago would be hurt more. A lot of commerce and wealth actually resides in the suburbs of Chicago, and whoever has that wins out IMO. But really, from the city, to the suburbs, to downstate, Illinois has a lot to offer due to its strategic location, natural resources, balanced economy, rich culture, and human capital. If only we could only get our act together when it comes to politics, public policy, fiscal policy, and getting rid of corruption, we could probably be the best state in the union.

    More serious secession movements have involved different parts of Cook County being split into new counties, which actually does make some sense. One proposal, dating from the 1970s, involved forming a new county out of the northwest part of Cook County (its panhandle), since that part is more suburban and conservative (similar to DuPage County, which was also separated from Cook way back in the 1800s). Northwest Cook has since become more diverse, but I do still feel like it would benefit from more local control. Another more recent proposal involved forming a new county out of southern Cook County where residents blame the Chicago-centric policies of the county on its ongoing economic woes. The more local control, the better IMO. Cook County should probably be divided into five counties: Northwest Cook, the North Shore, Chicago, Western Cook, and Southern Cook. They're all distinct areas with different needs.
    "Life's a journey, not a destination"
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