Saturday, December 08, 2012

Tagging Republicans as secessionists, PPP and the Georgia Poll

This article has come out in the media here and there including the Atlanta Journal Constitution, you can read it at this link:

The response to one of the PPP poll questions had the result that 42% of Georgian Republicans would support secession and 42% are opposed and that leaves 16% undecided.

The League of the South is all excited about this additional poll, they think it is the 2nd coming of the Confederacy, that their time has come. Check their blog on this.

However, the PPP pollster has this to say:
Finally we asked Georgians if they want to secede from the country because of Barack Obama's reelection and Republicans are evenly divided on the matter- 42% say they would like to secede and 42% are opposed to the concept. I doubt that many Republicans would really secede if they had the choice- not that many people are signing the secession petitions- but their willingness to say they would is a measure of how unhappy they are over the President's reelection.
The secessionist's millennium probably hasn't come. People are just venting.

I did some research on the Internet and reputable new sources identify PPP as a Democratic group. I see this polling as a possible effort to tag Republicans as having many secessionists among their members and hence not very patriotic.

So it appears that the Democrats might be consciously working to get Republicans identified with secession.

As I pointed out the Republican party's stock in trade from the 60s at least, if not since after World War II, has been to portray themselves as more patriotic than the Democrats. If the Republicans can be identified with secession then this tactic of the Republicans is eliminated. Instead their could be a reversal and the Democrats portray themselves as more patriotic.

I think perhaps some Democrats have figured this out. It will be interesting to see what other polling is done and by whom on the topic of secession. I wonder if Obama's response to these petitions will be calculated to get the Republicans identified with secession.

No one is taking this poll result too seriously including PPP seeing it as merely Republicans venting. However, this again diminishes reluctance to merely say you think secession is a good idea. A person now realizes that there are as many willing to say they are for it as against it, so they don't feel isolated expressing the same opinion, they feel a strength in numbers even if their intention is only to vent frustration.

This change in perspective won't only apply to Georgia, Republicans elsewhere might imagine there are at least substantial fractions of fellow Republicans where they live who share their sentiment to declare for secession as a means to vent.

This will make secession proposals less fringe and more mainstream. There is a point where people will not feel somewhat silly thinking about it, but transition to thinking it is impractical or not feasible, but not in itself silly to imagine.

In cultural geography nations are imagined. We don't know everyone who makes up our nation, we imagine that we all have an over arching commonality of being the same nationals. Once people no longer imagine themselves as members of a nation, the nation may persist for a while but it won't last. The Soviet Union evaporated, Czechoslovakia split, because they didn't imagine themselves as being all members of one nation. They imagined themselves as members of other nations. In an opposite example, people imagine an Israel and even though it hadn't existed as any type of polity for over 2,000 years, it comes into being, because first it was imagined.

Secession hasn't entered the mainstream of politics, even within the Republican party, but it has begun entering the imagination, and that is where nations are created and destroyed.

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