Friday, September 19, 2014

Island of Great Britain will not have a boundary and will remain unbound

The island of Great Britain will not getting a boundary any time soon and will remain unbound. The world will avoid having an additional boundary.

The Scottish referendum for secession went down to defeat by about 55% to 45%, a substantial margin.

Those who love division and divisiveness, the neo-Confederates, were hoping to see Scottish secession succeed to give their own campaign for secession credibility.

The Scottish National Party (SNP) can't be considered entirely defeated. They are getting more devolved powers from the central government. Also, other regions of England have decided they would like some devolved powers also. However, this might strengthen the British union by providing some local flexibility allowing the ending of discontents.

It will be interesting to see what the impact on Scottish politics is. The "No" voters now see themselves as a majority and probably are a little tired of the whole Scottish independence movement. Alex Salmond said this in response to the results: 
Earlier, Scotland's first minister, Alex Salmond, struck a defiant note at a downbeat Scottish National party rally in Edinburgh, saying he accepted Scotland had not "at this stage" decided to vote for independence.
The "No" voters might not want to deal with any more "stages." They might want to have a majority in the Scottish parliament and push the SNP aside. People probably will realize that if you play with matches you might start a fire.

The neo-Confederates will have to go back to hoping for some catastrophe to discredit modern society and provide the disorder where they would hope to get power.

Prior blog on this:

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Scottish Secession Update1: Update 2: Secession vote lost.

Update 2: Scottish secession lost in the polls. 55.3% No (Against) to 44.7% Yes (For). Wasn't close.

The neo-Confederates are deriving great hopes out of the increasing chances that Scotland will vote for secession in the Thursday Sept. 18, 2014 referendum that is coming up.

Also, I am getting a great many questions about it. Do I think Scotland will vote for secession, should Scotland secede, what will be the impact on the neo-Confederate movement?

I am not closely watching the Scottish secession campaign and the arguments. However, I have the following thoughts.

1. Will Scotland vote for secession?

I don't know. The polls show that the support for secession has been steadily increasing to the point it is now called a statistical tie between the pro- and anti-secession forces and there is some thought that this represents a continuing trend to a more pro-secession sentiment.

However, it isn't known if some people might say one thing to a pollster and vote differently in the voting booth.

The reporting that I have read says that the issues discussed have been around the economics of secession. These issues are important, but I think in the end you have a national identify beyond these issues. People die for their country and volunteer for military services for something more than economics or a discount at the mall.

The possibility has been steadily increasing. I don't think we will know until Sept. 18th.

2. Should Scotland secede?

I am surprised that the referendum is a simple majority. I would think that you wouldn't want to secede because at a specific time passions were running high over some issue and secession passed based on 50.0001%.  The American Constitution is amended by 2/3'rd vote of each congressional house and 3/4th ratification of the states.

However, it is their business how they do it.

Also, it is their business whether they want to do it or not.

Personally, I wouldn't want to be a citizen of a small country. I like taking road trips and driving thousands of miles and know that I will not be faced with any boundaries. I like a large job market and a vast nation with vast opportunities. But that is just me. I suppose those in the Vatican love the small size of their country.

3. What would Scottish Independence be?

However, it needs to be considered that Scottish independence is not going to be entirely independent. They are planning to join the European Union and then instead of being part of a government in London they will be part of an administration in Brussels.

The reason all these independence movements are thriving in Europe is that with the European Union (EU) you really don't need to be a part of larger European state. A EU citizen from Spain can easily get a job in Germany or move to England. You are part of a large continental economic system. You don't have to worry about being trapped in some small national economy.

In other ways the world's economy has become transnational. With the World Trade Organization and other economic groups regulations are defined by transnational bodies more and more and not by the specific state some region might find itself in.

In such a Europe and such a world the nation state becomes less relevant. If you want a free Ruritania I suppose you can.

The surge of secession sentiment in Europe is driven by transnational institutions as much as any local feeling. If you have a transnational defense force and a transnational state like the European Union the need for the current national government isn't that great if at all needed.

Of course as a small nation you don't have much of a prospect if you decide you want to leave a transnational state since you are no longer part of a state with a sufficient size to be independent of the transnational state.

4. Will Scottish secession lead to violence?

With independence people have to make a decision whether they are British citizens or Scottish citizens. With no national boundary existing in living memory there are probably a lot of people living in Scotland who will choose being British rather than Scottish.

I suppose that it will occur to someone to require Scottish citizenship for a lot of Scottish government jobs leading to people losing their jobs. Maybe there will be other discriminatory legislation.

What will be the condition of people living there who chose to remain British and can't vote and are suddenly foreigners?

How will the 45% that voted against secession feel suddenly being forced out of a nation they wanted to remain in?

How magnanimous will be the victors in a pro-secessionist vote?

What happens if the negotiations over the breakup are rancorous?

Given the nature of humanity to do the wrong thing and be obnoxious we can't dismiss the prospect that there will be some violence.

There might not be violence, but British residents might find a discriminatory atmosphere such as their children being taunted at school. There might be an large exodus from Scotland.

5. How will Scotland treat secession in Scotland?

When the issue of Quebec secession came up some Native Canadian groups said unequivocally that they weren't going to be a part of Quebec and would stay with Canada.

Some parts of Scotland might vote against secession, would they have to go along? Especially sections on the border with England would they have to go along with secession?

My feeling is that the leaders of Scottish independence aren't going to tolerate secession from Scotland.

6. Impact of Scottish secession in the United States of America:

A successful Scottish campaign will be a tremendous moral boost to the neo-Confederate movement, a radicalizing influence, and will greatly aid the neo-Confederate movement.

If someone had proposed that Scotland would be an independent nation in the 60s, 70s, 80s, it would have seemed laughable. The previous implausibility of Scottish secession will be a great encouragement for American secessionists to continue trying. The Scottish Nationalist Party got single digits in the polls when they started. Now it is a real possibility.

So the poor current prospects of any secessionist movement will suddenly be much much less of a discouragement. It might be that support is just a single digit, but so was the SNP's when it started. You just need to keep pushing and not give up.

It will be much easier to imagine being successful with the example of a successful independence movement whose initial prospects seemed ludicrously improbable.

The Union of Scotland and England happened 307 years ago. It predates the American republic. Just because a nation has existed for a long time will no longer mean it necessarily will persist in the future. What might have seemed eternal might prove to be transitory.  The American Civil War is about 150 years ago.

Czechoslovakia was independent nation between World War I and II and now is two nations. We don't think of Czechoslovakia much and Eastern Europe always seems to be being shuffled into new states with new boundaries. Scotland occupies a large place in the American imagination. It is an English speaking nation with a large number of descendants in the United States. It is not some distant third world nation. It occupies a large presence in English language literature. We imagine them as being similar to us. The American public will think about what happened in Scotland.

Samuel Francis, a strong supporter of honoring the Confederacy had a position that secession was "infantile" because he thought it was improbable. There are neo-Confederates like him who though they would have liked to see an independent Confederacy, thought it was romantic sentiment unrestrained by common sense. Now with Scottish secession I think neo-Confederates who thought secession as being a sentiment unrestrained by reason will re-think their position.

Also, for those who haven't considered the neo-Confederate movement  but identify with the Confederacy or are Lost Cause enthusiasts but reject secession as a widely improbable prospect, Scottish independence will result in them giving it some consideration for the same reasons it will encourage the people who currently are neo-Confederate secessionists.

Persons commenting on Scottish secession have noted that Scottish secession has gained support as a means to a political end, a liberal Scotland wishing to separate from a more conservative Britain. If you can't win the election, define a district where you can win the elections.

A lot of people living in the former Confederate states formerly without much interest in the Confederacy might get interested because of their discontent with national policies.

The example that this might happen is already shown by rural counties in Colorado and California who are advocating secession because they can't get their way. Their secession demand is based on no more than the idea that they don't like not getting their way and that somehow their votes ought to count more than the votes of others.

As I said before the secession movements in Scotland and Quebec started out in single digits. In the 1990s John Shelton Reed's opinion polls showed 15% support in the former Confederate states for secession, though it has to be remembered that he was one of the founders of the neo-Confederate movements so the poll is somewhat suspect to me.

However, recent polls have found surprisingly high identifications with the Confederacy. A recent Public Policy Poll survey found that 29% of Mississippians would back the Confederacy in another Civil War and 21% weren't sure. Those poll results are way better than the initial poll results of most independent movements.

With Scottish independence it can easily be imagined that what might have been merely wistful thinking will become a serious contemplation of possibility.

Also, with a referendum in Scotland on independence being held, the whole idea of having a referendum on secession will not be such a fringe idea. A state, possibly Mississippi could have a referendum on secession. They might not be able to implement the results if the vote is for secession passes, but that isn't so important. Once a secession referendum passes, the national government would lose legitimacy and that would start a series of causes and effects leading on to conflict.

As for the ability of our military and police to stop secessionists the recent events at the Clive Bundy ranch show how the government might not act against clearly illegal acts by secessionists. Clive Bunday was renting land and just decided it was his on the basis of some specious reasoning and decided not to pay his rent and got away having an armed insurrection against the authorities. The insurrectionists even set up road blocks on public roads resulting in complaints by people living in the area.

Follow up blog on this:


Was interviewed for this article on Scottish secession.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

"The Economist" says that the author of the pro-slavery review wasn't Alan Farmer. UPDATE:

The Economist contacted me and said Alan Farmer wasn't the author of the review.

I replied to the email asking them to tell me who the author was. If they wouldn't tell me I asked them  to forward a message from me asking the author to publicly admit to the review. We will see.

I also informed them about the neo-Confederate movement and their pro-slavery viewpoint.

I also mentioned three other possible authors.

UPDATE: I am still trying to identify the author. I would be interested in any suggestions. 

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Possible clue to who "The Economist" review was. UPDATE: "The Economist" says it isn't Alan Farmer.

UPDATE: The Economist contacted me and said Alan Farmer wasn't the author of the review.

If you go to this website you will find the following PDF.,-course-and-effects.pdf.aspx
Floggings were rare, if only because slave owners had a vested interest in
the care and maintenance of their property. Just as most Rolls-Royce
owners today take good care of their cars, so slave owners looked after
their ‘property’. (A prime field hand was worth much the same as a
modern-day top-of-the-range car.)
The author of this chapter argues that the experience of slavery varied a lot and is in keeping with the reviewers opinion.

This "sample chapter" is from a history series they publish titled "
That is the link on the following pages.

The author seems to be Alan Farmer according to this link.

He quotes Fogel and Engerman as if they were competent historians. 

I don't know if it is Alan Farmer who wrote The Economist review but they seem to have the same views on slavery.. He could just be another slavery apologist. Perhaps the educational and historical establishment in Britain is full of them.

I was able to identify Farmer with key phrases from The Economist review using Google.

Farmer is retired and so I am trying to locate a contact email.

Update: Have copy of review. "The Economist" pulls pro-slavery review of book, trying to track down copy of review and track down who wrote review.

UPDATE: I have figured out that the link has the full review and it isn't just an excerpt.


The Economist pulled the review before I could get a copy. However, if I had copy of the review I could do some forensic analysis of the text and see who might have written it.

Yes, I know that The Economist reviews have no byline. Let's move past that. It doesn't mean that with the text I can't identify who wrote it or find out by other means.

Also, does anyone know through other means who might have written it? 

I have emailed Dr. Baptist to see if he has a copy. At least one other writer for The Economist has been named as a possible author. 

Could someone at The Economist tell me by email? 

From what is available online I can start doing some investigation now. However, the full text would really be useful. 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular Posts Last 30 days

Popular Posts All Time