by Tom Baugh
Even a casual blog reader will note that secession is an idea which has broken through the crust of contemporary political thought. As Russ Longcore points out in his editorial notes for a recent article on DumpDC, when the topic appears in the progressive rags, then something is afoot. Reading over the list of speakers at this year’s Free State Project Liberty Forum, you can bet that secession will be a key topic at that event, and many others like it.
And yet, the public, by-and-large, has been trained to view secession as something which only evil slaveholding racists, or other antisocial malcontents, would seriously consider. Many of our fellow citizens need little training in suspecting secessionists because their supply of crumbs would be threatened if secession caught on. If you start ticking off all the classes of people who benefit from the status quo, and examining the steady slide toward oblivion that we have been on for many election cycles, you might come to the conclusion, as I have, that they surround us. We all heard a lot of packs dropping when Scott Brown was elected recently, but even if the man channels Reagan, the best he can do is slow the juggernaut down imperceptibly; certainly not reverse it. Plus, that Republican from the heart of liberal America has yet to cast his first votes. We’ll see.
Let’s not forget that our enemies have the ability to replicate themselves, even within our midst, as much as they desire. They can manufacture as much fiat currency as they wish, either by printing more directly, or indirectly by inflating entitlements of all kinds. They can use their unconstitutional means and agencies to divide and conquer us, individually and in detail, as our state officials stand by and feign helplessness. And each day, they turn more of our children against us because we have abdicated education of our most precious to them. I have a hard time imagining how, in our current situation, even a single state, even as more citizens wake to the threat, will be able to concentrate enough political vigor to make a serious bid for secession, much less accomplish it.
Once the first state accomplishes even a decent showing in a referendum on the secession, woe be unto them. The media and national authorities will spring into action to paint first the secession leadership, and then all the rest, as any imaginable scoundrel as can be made to stick in the minds of the populace. Should you be such a ringleader, you will be painted in the media and in the courts as a weapons violator, a drug dealer, a polygamist, a child pornographer, a sexual offender, a religious deviant, a domestic terrorist, or any necessary combination of these and others. If no such evidence exists, no problem, they’ll bring plenty when they come to kill you, ahem, arrest you. This evidence, when pulled from the ashes of your home and family, will be sufficient to convince our fellow citizens that you are, or were, indeed, one of those evil secessionists who wishes to enslave his fellow man. The mass of leeches who benefit from the status quo will have won again.
This doesn’t mean that our situation is hopeless, far from it. We just need to make sure we are fighting the right war. Any plan based on leeches waking up to Constitutional principles is doomed from the start. How many times have you tried to explain even the basic fundamentals of liberty to your fellows, only to have them wander off because the big game is about to start? We liberty-minded folks tend to clump together, which makes us overestimate our concentration in the populace at large. This overestimation then causes us to fight on our enemies’ terms and on their terrain, instead of what we should be doing, which is changing the landscape of the battlefield, much as a soldier might by digging tank traps, stringing barbed wire, constructing fortifications or using camouflage.
Before talking about that terraforming, let’s define some terms. Federalism is a central strength of our Constitutional system, but in the minds of our enemies, the word has come to mean strong national government, of course. Throughout the remainder of this series of articles, I use the term national where popular usage says federal. I use nationals to identify the national regulators and enforcement agents, and nationalists to identify those plus all of our fellow citizens who are unsympathetic, or hostile, to the secessionist cause and prefer the status quo. This classification is merely for discussing secession; nationalism in general is a great thing for our united States when dealing with our international enemies.
This at least gives us terms now to identify the nationalists as the secessionists’ natural political enemies, and as such, enemies to liberty itself. Nationalists use the nationals as their agents to enforce our submission to the national level of government. Our state houses and governor’s mansions, town halls and sheriffs’ offices, are choked with nationalists or nationalist sympathizers, whether Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians or Independents, and of all religious, social and economic classes. Many of these aspire to national office, and as such are perfectly willing to abandon their responsibilities to true federalism in pursuit of their selfish ambitions. So, when the nationals come to burn your family in your home, nationalist sympathizers in local office will stand idly by, shaking their heads at the shame of it all, instead of doing their duty of arresting your national attackers on sight. We don’t want to put all those highway and education dollars at risk, do we?
Sadly, the vocabulary has been so twisted by progressives of all parties that we can’t use the proper term, statist, to differentiate our Andy from the nationalist Barney. We could perhaps use a capitalized Statist, but even this would be confusing to the unwary. A true federalist would naturally prefer a strong State among a nation of States, but this too has been perverted within all those mushy minds. So, I will use secessionist to refer to those liberty-minded folks who believe that States should be more than simple administrative subdivisions of a national whole, whether these States actually secede or not. Die-hard secessionists, of course, are already familiar with these terms; I’m merely defining them here so that the newly aware patriot knows what we are talking about.
Secession is a noble, if somewhat idealistic, approach to solving the overreach of the national government in our daily lives. It is necessary that we fully understand the implications of secession, and its consequences in the real world. To help illustrate key points, I’m going to present italicized hypothetical dramatizations of key issues, and then discuss how those issues relate to our current situation. Nothing in what we discuss here advocates secession or violence, but instead is a warning of what might happen if that path is chosen, and choices that would be required of the participants in those circumstances. Hopefully, by highlighting some of the negative aspects of secession we might be able to see the actual problems, and solve those instead through continued discussion.
This is a deep topic. When I first discussed some of these ideas with Russ Longcore after a gun show in Marietta, I was excited to write this article right away. After stewing over it for a week, I realized it had turned into a series of three articles, which I released to various blogs. Some of these blogs published Part I right away. A day later, I realized I had left out several key pieces of the puzzle, and had poorly written those portions I had included. As a result, I pulled the entire three-part series to reconsider the tougher portions. I hope that this new series of six articles makes more sense to you than the original three made to me upon reflection.
You may walk away from this series of articles thinking that secession is a hopeless, quixotic quest. But, on the other hand, you may see a light at the end of a different tunnel. Regardless, don’t misunderstand my attitude toward secessionists themselves. Almost all of these people are far more liberty-minded that the typical citizen. Most of them are well-read, and have drilled into classical study of secession, and liberty itself, far more deeply than many who scribble on posterboard these days.
Yet this fact makes them all the more of a threat to those who enjoy the status quo, including some of the posterboarders. Which is why I think that when push comes to shove, most of the hard-core secessionists, who should be our leaders and public servants instead of the nationalists who rule us today, will be demonized in the press, after which they will be shot or burned, to the celebration of the masses. I think there might be a better way to get to the same goal that secessionists seek, which is the minimization of the national government in all our affairs, without subjecting these brave souls to undue personal sacrifice.
Regardless of whether secession itself is practical, or will solve anything, secessionists have worked to develop many great ideas for their cause. These ideas might find better application in other, more practical ways.
We continue these thoughts, and consider a possible secession with teeth, in the next article in this series, The Second Shot.
Tom Baugh is the author of Starving the Monkeys, Fight Back Smarter. He is also a former Marine, patented inventor, entrepreneur and professional irritant.
by Tom Baugh
In the previous article, we laid the foundation for discussing secession in the real world. As you may have noticed in your daily travels, the real world is populated by leeches who enjoy things just the way they are. As much as we would like to imagine our fellow man rising up to join our ranks to ensure liberty for ourselves and posterity, recent history shows us that this just isn’t so. Read any number of articles on Will Grigg’s Pro Libertate site, among others, to convince you of this fact. We might wring our hands, but practically never does anyone side with the victims of government abuse in any practical way. And most of our fellow man just looks the other way. Expect the public response to secessionists to be no better if they succeed. In fact, the public response will probably be openly hostile, for reasons we will discuss here. So, how would one implement secession in a way that doesn’t just get secessionists attacked and destroyed individually?
As mentioned in the previous article, Understanding the Battlefield, I will describe hypothetical secessionist situations in italicized blocks, and then comment on the issues raised afterward. So here we go.
The winter of 2011 was cold, and deep. With heating fuel subject to the taxes required by Cap and Trade, farmers were having trouble paying to keep their herds and flocks warm. Despite a takeover of the Congress in 2010, most GOP lawmakers were reluctant to turn back any of the legislative excesses not only of the Obama era, but also of their own, which stretched back into the era of Bush I, and beyond. After all, many of the old guard, having been on the news talk circuit throughout 2009 extolling the green movement as good for business because it created new markets and jobs, found themselves unwilling to reverse their previous positions.
Even the newly elected lawmakers, suddenly immersed in the lobby-rich environment inside the capitol beltway, were already beginning to understand why public healthcare, Cap and Trade, and other controversial programs would actually help America. In the fuzzy minds of these electable elites, most of whom had never run a business providing original value in their lives, but who knew the right electoral buttons to push, found themselves hopelessly out of their depth. Lacking a foundation from which to think other than the key words and phrases required to sway whichever block of voters they were addressing, the electables began to respond to capitol politics and imagined the cameras and fuzzy blondes to be their electorate. The actual electorate who had sent them there only months prior sat on the other end of those tunnels of horror watching their newly elected patriots reveal that, once again, they had all been duped. Most began to imagine that 2012 would make the difference, and reached for more posterboard. Others decided on a different course.
The assertions in the paragraphs above are relatively mild. Even a brief tour of the media, including the beloved Fox News and their business channel arm, will reveal an endless parade of useful idiots extolling the business-friendly virtues of the green economy. We often see talking heads, with very little dissention among them, adopting positions which don’t make sense in the real world. Even Newt abandoned his principles to prove to the world that he understands how green is good. The recent media buzz about employer mandates to provide IRAs, for example, reveals a total lack of understanding about issues that entrepreneurs face each day.
The scenario in this article involves a Cap and Trade nightmare spinning out of control, but the actual issues in question don’t matter. Pick your poison: environment, healthcare, war on terror, war on drugs, entitlements, economic crisis, etc. Any one of them, or a small combination of them, can be fatal. And we face more issues at one time today than most of us can absorb and react to effectively. At least if you have to work for a living, that is. But our political opponents have plenty of time on their hands, because they can take as much from us as they want and spend their day, and our money, destroying our way of life.
The problem, as anyone reading this already knows, is that too much power is concentrated in Washington. Where we might disagree is a) how that power became so concentrated in the first place, and b) what to do about it.
Regarding the first disagreement, I maintain that, in our representative republic, power is concentrated in Washington because that is where the electorate wants it. Because this concentrated foreign power (from the perspective of a secessionist) makes it easier to anonymously rob you, and kill you, individually, if you resist the robbery. To this electorate, you are a minority, not entitled to a meaningful voice in the decision about this theft. Worse, to them, you are a potential domestic terrorist if you threaten their supply of crumbs stolen from you, or show signs of disobedience to their national agents, and their State-level accomplices. You must understand this fact if you are to survive and live to win.
The secessionist believes that this concentration of power can be reversed by removing States, individually if need be, from the Union. Yet, I maintain that what a secessionist will inherit is a fraction of the original whole electorate, including that number of their fellows who depend on the government check, outnumbering the productive on any scale, local, state or national. Welfare, retirement benefits, or government jobs or contracts, and so on, it makes no difference. The electorate has been bought and their inclinations paid for. And many of them carry posterboard, absolutely unaware, or unwilling to admit, that they themselves are part of the problem.
With that preparation, let’s continue our story for a bit.
Some of those farmers, living on the financial edge after compliance costs of NAIS had been factored in, are at the breaking point, and fuel costs are almost the last straw. NAIS, which began as a voluntary program, became mandatory in late 2010 under the triple pressure that Fall of scare about threats to the food supply, scare about outbreak of disease, and lobby pressure. Most vocal were those lobbyists who work for domestic poultry and beef producers which had been bought out by Brazilian firms starting with Pilgrim’s Pride in 2009. Some farmers suspected that these Brazilians are merely cutouts for the Chinese, who would benefit from a removal of chickens from all those backyards and thus creating a market for their industrialized versions. But, rationalizing that the domestically-operated yet foreign-owned farms were nonetheless providing Americans with jobs, including the jobs of NAIS inspectors, even the newly elected Class of 2010 Congressmen were unwilling to roll back these mandates. Besides, only a few of their most vocal members from agricultural states resisted with any vigor.
In reaction to soaring fuel costs, farmers began taking things into their own hands and turned to wood heat, and in some regions, bootleg sulfurous coal that had been outlawed under Cap and Trade and EPA regulations throughout the 1990s and 2000s. Having learned the lessons of the weeks-long arctic snap of 2010, forward-thinking farmers had installed wood- and coal-furnaces throughout 2010.
Like national bloodhounds, however, the inspectors for NAIS in the Department of Agriculture, and their Cap and Trade counterparts in the Department of Energy, began descending on these energy bootleggers with a vengeance. Wood heat, which had been exempted from inspection for limited home use in order to purchase, short-term, all those subdivision votes, became subject to taxation under Cap and Trade for commercial, including agricultural, use. And the sulfurous coal was outlawed entirely and mine entrances sealed.
A black market in wood and coal soon sprang up, but this was short-lived and crushed by the weight of black-clad
national agents who executed no-knock entry on the homes and barns of fuelleggers who had committed the dual crimes of tax avoidance and environmental sabotage. It didn’t help their cases that many of these same fuelleggers had been on the radar as liberty bloggers or tax-resisters in years past.
Moonshiners at least had the option to hide in the dark a century before. But those farmers who used bootleg fuel, or cut their own, couldn’t hide the smoke from their farms, and so inspectors only had to follow their noses, or the tell-tale evidence from infrared-sensing drones, to descend on the farms one at a time.
Because of the illegal nature of these wood- and coal-heat installations, those few farmers whose property caught fire, some of suspicious origin, found that their insurance would not pay off. Further, insurance companies sent their own inspectors out to cancel the policies of any farmers using bootleg heat. Uninsurable farmers then lost both their contracts and their mortgages. Almost all of these folded immediately.
Some had had enough and shots were fired. It was unclear who fired first.
Wow, it kind of gets out of hand quick, doesn’t it? Good thing we trained all those paramilitary police forces with a drug war, and then fueled them with a righteous fervor during the war on terror. You never know when that lump of coal or this stick of wood becomes the next illicit substance. And I haven’t even touched healthcare. Again, the specific issues don’t really matter. I’m going to skip details of the obvious gun-control measures which would result from this initial sporadic violence of desperation. All that you really need to consider at this point is what side do you think all those “Civilest of Wars” pundits will come down on, as they spring alligator tears and warn against the “Destruction of the Republic”?
Unlike the first shot heard ’round the world, this second shot will be interpreted, not as a rallying event, but as a justification by the masses, who demand their checks, to put you back in your cage. They forget in this, of course, that you, the productive individualist, have other choices.
As farmers became painted as the new domestic terrorists, late-night hosts began making jokes about suicide tractor bombings on federal buildings. Most of suburbia laughed while farmers had their assets seized and sold at auction to larger conglomerates, particularly Brazilian and other Latin American firms with shadowy Chinese energy connections.
As gun ownership became more and more restricted, some localities took the next step toward secession. Local sheriffs, understanding that the recently-enacted gun control laws allowed law enforcement to continue to carry weapons, began to deputize, on a volunteer basis, the citizens of their counties en-masse. Many sheriffs, however, particularly those in more suburban areas, had learned from the example of Forrest County, Mississippi, Sheriff Billy McGee, who, during Katrina in 2005, seized FEMA ice trucks to distribute the ice to those who needed refrigeration for their medications. Sheriff McGee’s subsequent trial taught these more suburban-minded sheriffs to sit on the fence a little while longer and see how things turn out and take no action. After all, few of their constituents even own farms.
Seeing these mass deputizations in rural counties as a rising tide of potential militia violence, nationalists at every level and in every sphere of influence begin to denounce them. Even Alligator Tears tries to find a way to sit on this particular fence. Some of the newly-elected Congressional crop receive death threats over their participation, or silence, in passage of gun control legislation and, more and more, begin to favor nationalism after all. Legislation is considered which would restrict weapon possession by rural law enforcement to handguns, and only allowing these to be carried when actually on duty. Off-duty, the officers’ weapons are to be locked in armories. This proposed legislation also provides for posting of national agents in every local police and sheriff office to ensure compliance. The list of Oathkeepers becomes interpreted more and more as a list of potential domestic terrorists.
There is an upside to this proposed legislation, however. The full-time posting of national enforcement officers adds to the pool of national jobs already expanded by all those environmental and agricultural inspectors, in addition to those private-sector compliance consultant jobs. Plus, the lucrative contracts to install all those local armories starts to make the proposed legislation look pretty good to some. Everyone forgets about the long-term effect of the farm crisis, for now.
This transition was kept deliberately mild and believable. Keep in mind that even the most draconian national decrees provides jobs and opportunities for someone. Usually, lots of someones, which is why I maintain that they already surround us, and will do so more and more each day as the nationals bleed us dry through a variety of means, and use it to enforce more “robbery and murder”, in the words of Lysander Spooner, against us.
Interestingly, crises have a way of unfolding in unexpected ways, as we shall see later in this series. But first, we discuss an evolving secessionist movement in the next article, Warm Live Hands.
Tom Baugh is the author of Starving the Monkeys, Fight Back Smarter. He is also a former Marine, patented inventor, entrepreneur and professional irritant.
by Tom Baugh
When Forrest County, Mississippi, Sheriff Billy McGee liberated two ice-laden FEMA trucks in 2005 in the wake of Katrina, he probably didn’t intend to spark secessionist ideas in others. Yet, his landslide re-election in 2007 spoke volumes about how eager local citizens, particularly in rural communities, are to stand behind their local servants who keep community interests in mind. But to the nationals, his actions were intolerable. So, he and three of his deputies have been charged with national crimes against the people. His case is an abject lesson of how, in normal times, in the real world, no good deed truly goes unpunished. The nationals have all the time on their hands they need, and all the resources, too. If they run out, they’ll take more from you, or print more, which amounts to the same thing, of course.
Despite Sheriff McGee’s re-election in 2007, and the overwhelming support reported for him among the locals, there is nothing that the national subjects in his jurisdiction can do to protect him. His case has been moved from Jackson, Mississippi, to Baton Rogue, Louisiana, presumably so juror outrage can be whipped up against him. To Forrest County residents, he may be a hero, but he can be painted in Louisiana as a scoundrel who stole ice intended for them. So much for a jury of your peers, and the inherent check on nationalism, jury nullification, which that Constitutional protection implies. As needed, the nationals can move your case to wherever they can find a sympathetic jury. Presuming they bothered to not just simply shoot you on sight for resisting. Take heed, secessionists.
As you will recall from the previous articles, we first laid a foundation for discussing secession in the real world. Next, we discussed a hypothetical escalation of seemingly normal legislation, prompting some rural sheriffs to mass-deputize the citizenry to bypass restrictions against gun ownership. In our tale, this led to a calling of the national bluff, in which the nationals then restricted gun possession by local law enforcement, and posted national watchdogs to ensure compliance. Keep in mind, also, that there isn’t a single entitlement program or an oppressive legislative act that doesn’t ultimately result in a check for hundreds, or thousands, or millions of us who weren’t getting a check the day before. And so peel off more and more of our fellow citizens into the nationalist camp.
Now let’s return to our italicized hypothetical narrative.
Sheriffs who had mass-deputized their fellow citizens found themselves essentially prisoners in their own offices, their actions watched constantly by the national overseer installed there. The Made in China bank vault armories, installed previously by local contractors run by men most of these rural sheriffs had known their entire lives, stood as a stark reminder that sheriffs the nation over had simply become figureheads in their own counties; serfs of the nationals. There would be no more Billy McGees, these hotheads would be stopped in their tracks from now on.
More and more, black-clad masked nationals swarmed the countryside, rounding up weapons and killing resisters while the national media cheered them on. Each act of resistance, while noble, was simply a pointless sacrifice. Even the right-wing media, if there could be such a thing, sold out the resisters and joined the public relations war against them; alligator tears aplenty as dictated by the need to attract and hold ratings among a growing female audience who were rightly concerned by the developments. Suburban papers ran recruitment ads for the unemployed and able-bodied to join the fight against these domestic terrorists. Former military and local police swelled the ranks, many of the former chasing promises of educational and career benefits, the latter enticed by promises of finally making it to the big leagues.
Cold dead hands were in no short supply, particularly among the rural population. Suburbia, having been taught compliance by years of submission to zoning restrictions and home owners’ associations, didn’t understand why all those farmers were insisting on breaking the law by using unregulated fuels to warm their herds and flocks in the first place. After all, Joe and Sally Suburbia reasoned, why should rural people dodge all the taxes they were required to pay to heat their suburban homes? It just wasn’t fair, those farmers should be taught to pay their taxes like the rest of us. And now there was talk of local militias taking over counties at the hands of renegade sheriffs. The circulating theme among the respectable was “We had accomplished so much by putting the GOP back in Congress in 2010, and now those fools are just going to ruin it all. Beck is right, they are going to destroy the Republic.”
Don’t read into the narrative above that I think all former military and local police are stormtroopers on the hoof. No, but enough of them are. Let’s do some math. Assume that in the past decade we have trained and discharged about a million servicemen and women, not even counting the number of local law enforcement officials who are looking to trade up. If even only one percent of those were willing to oppress their fellow citizens, then the nationals could field an entirely new force consisting of ten thousand shock troops, each of whom needs the money after having squandered their productive formative years.
This force of ten thousand could be split into fifty two-hundred-man gun-seizure squads, which rivals the assault on Waco, one per state. Think about it. And how much would they have to pay to get two percent of that population of candidates instead of only one? Or five percent of them? Or more? The nationalists, who represent your neighbors’ claims on your property, can print as much money as they want, or, the equivalent, put as much on government debit cards as they wish. Even better, they can follow the precedent of the drug war and keep a lot of the loot they steal from you. For their agency, of course, but each valuable item taken from you, and then sold and auctioned simply means more of the budget that can be spent in bonuses, benefits and hostile fire pay. Even our local law enforcement has been bought for the nationals with that little trick, haven’t they?
Also, don’t read into the narrative above that I think everyone in suburbia is a spineless nationalist. No, but a lot of them are. Most of the national dollars that flow into our economy do so through the urban areas, and trickle out through the suburban. Even projects that are conducted in the countryside are administered through offices in the more populous areas. These offices are a combination of public administrators and proceed through a thick belt of government contracts at decreasing distances from the trough, but fed from it nonetheless.
Beyond those direct and indirect government contractors, how many of your neighbors operate businesses that would not exist without government regulation? Here is an easy one: accountants. A typical CPA’s bread is buttered by tax law, and tax compliance. Find one, and ask him what value he might provides absent complicated tax laws. After some stuttering and mumbling, he’ll mumble back something about helping businesses understand their economic status. Oh really? First, if you, as a business owner, didn’t have to track all of your expenses and income to satisfy tax laws, how much would you need to do to manage your accounts? That process would boil down to seeing whether the numbers in your checkbook are going up or down. And for businesses too big for that kind of simple accounting? How big do you think they would have to be if you started trimming all the fat such as human resources departments, quota positions, safety and regulatory compliance inspectors and trainers, and so on? CPAs are only one of many professions you can care to name that simply wouldn’t exist without the national government. Where do you think they are going to land when push comes to shove?
Those of you reading this who are unfortunate enough to be trapped in suburbia have probably experienced the trough-feeders in every direction around you in your neighborhoods. These are the people who you have tried to “wake up”, but then write off as sheeple. Get your head on straight, these people are not misguided sheep. No, for the most part they have decided for themselves that they like things just the way they are. The few that you think are waking up have probably just felt the same as you for a while, but were afraid to speak before now. Don’t worry, the nationals will put the fear back into your new friends.
The initial spate of resistance against gun seizures was short and bloody. For years, gun enthusiasts assured each other that they would fight and die rather than having their guns taken away. Themes of “they can’t get all of us” and “if the Jews had fought” filled the air. But, missing from these platitudes were the corollary “they can’t get all of us at once, but they can get us all individually whenever they like” and “Hitler didn’t have modern oppressive technology”.
In the face of up to two-hundred-man death squads, most gun owners simply let them in, while wondering why no one else was fighting. Others handed over what guns they hadn’t buried. Suburbanites, deprived of very much land in which to hide their weapons, found themselves subjected to ground-penetrating radar and other technology, which made finding hidden weapons on their tiny homesteads relatively trivial. These, at least those who survived the assault, were simply arrested on the spot and branded in the media as another domestic terrorist. One at a time, many fell prey to overwhelming force and, to save themselves, ratted out their friends.
But those holdouts in the rural areas were a little tougher to crack. After the first few nationals were killed, and their funerals held as a national media spectacle, the nationalists sympathizers were prepared to take it up a notch and get rid of these rural terrorists once and for all.
Enter the armed Predator drone, and the Active Denial System (ADS). The drone had become quite a media star in the practice war against insurgents, and now its domestic debut was ready. Each night the populace was treated to thermal video showing drones attacking and killing domestic terrorists holding out in their bunkers and compounds, which the week before would have simply been called homes and farms. The guns in the hands of these rural terrorists were clearly visible in most cases as they waited for an enemy they couldn’t even see.
Other rural terrorists were seized as they were in town shopping for food or transacting their daily business. Mere suspicion was considered sufficient reason to detain them, and then search their homes unopposed. No cold dead hands there. The nationals had all the time in the world to take these terrorists one by one.
Yet other terrorists were subjected to the beam of the ADS, and left squirming on the ground in agony as their skin was heated to painful temperatures by the microwave weapon. The noble national forces soon learned that repeated exposure of captured terrorists to this nonlethal weapon’s effects would result in a flood of information about other terrorist suspects. Throughout, the national media audience was assured that these effects were harmless. Even a few blonde anchors were shown yelping and giggling after exposure to the beam for a low power public relations demo.
Not reported, however, was that the beam’s energy can be modified at will by the operator, and even higher power by the contractors for the program. A higher setting, used to penetrate most walls to attack suspects inside, would blind an unprotected victim as their eyes began to boil. These horror stories were only reported on conspiracy-theory sites. Regardless, most holdouts subjected to a few minutes of prolonged exposure swept back and forth across their homes surrendered without a shot. Many, and not just the elderly victims, died of shock on the spot, as did their wives and children and family pets in large numbers that would be explained away as murder-suicides.
The underground secessionist movement soon learned to protect themselves with the simple expedient of shielding their homes with sheets of aluminum foil on the inside of walls and windows, which was sufficient to deflect the beam to allow some level of survival. However, like laws banning possession of certain molecules and body armor for the drug war, silencers and magazines for the war on guns, privacy and technology for the war on terror, and finally even home fortifications for the whim of the Oklahoma legislature, the mere possession of an excess amount of aluminum foil was criminalized by the very same new crop of nationalists sent to Washington only months before to save the day.
Throughout these excesses, local law enforcement served as traffic control and area security around the operation areas. Closely watched by their national overseers, they assured themselves that their hands were clean; after all, they weren’t seizing the guns, the nationals they were protecting were seizing them. No oaths violated here, they imagined at their traffic checkpoints, as the citizens who needed them the most squirmed and died in agony.
Where did I jump the track here? No villainous rogue nationals, as in Matt Bracken’s excellent book Enemies: Foreign and Domestic. No upstart pretender to national power, as in James Wesley Rawles’ equally essential Patriots. Not even an economic crisis, which many of us know must be coming. Nope, just your run-of-the-mill defiance of national authority over some tin foil and wood stoves, and the incremental escalation of the response, cheered on by the nationalists in our midst each step of the way. Defiance gets in the way of your neighbor’s check. You may not be his keeper, but you certainly are his benefactor. Get back in your cage, they insist.
Sheriff McGee can tell you that the nationals have plenty of time and resources on their side. They will eventually get around to you. Oh, and the only reason why Sheriff McGee wasn’t just simply shot in 2005 was because he was wearing a badge. You or I, undeputized, would have been handled much more roughly, and with little media fanfare.
Some would say that his mistake was simple: his crisis at hand simply wasn’t big enough. Before we get to that big crisis and its implications, we’ll take a few detours around issues secessionists might face should they succeed in the next installment, A Civilized Secession.
Tom Baugh is the author of Starving the Monkeys, Fight Back
Smarter. He is also a former Marine, patented inventor, entrepreneur and professional irritant.
by Tom Baugh
In this series thus far we have discussed the framework of secession via a hypothetical example of how simple events can easily spin out of control and lead to a populist demand for a national clampdown. We also saw how our situation today differs significantly from that faced by the quintessential example of government oppression, the Jews in Germany prior to the Holocaust. Hitler wishes he had had our technology at his disposal.
As mentioned earlier in the series, secessionists are probably one of the most pro-liberty movements afoot. In this installment, we examine the fallout from even a civilized secession, and how even the most well-meaning intentions will be twisted in the public eye to destroy those involved. And, so, we return to our italicized narrative, this time in the mythical State of Wytana.
The Governor of Wytana, who had run on a secessionist platform and won a resounding majority in the recent election, watched the unfolding national events in horror, and knew that his time had come. More than half the legislature had also expressed secessionist leanings, and was even now voting on the proposal to formally secede. When the secession bill arrived on his desk shortly after midnight, he was not surprised. Also not surprisingly, the Southern Poverty Law Center filed a challenge in the State Supreme Court before his ink was even dry, but by noon the next day the Court had heard, and dismissed, the case. The secession was on. The Governor held a press conference to announce to the world that the Republic of Wytana was henceforth an independent nation. To avoid confusion, his title of Governor would remain.
In this article, we are going to assume a best case, in which the state legislative, executive and judicial branches, as well as the populace at large, are all overwhelmingly in favor of secession. Without these preconditions, a secessionist movement will have an even worse time than depicted here.
The same bill, which had authorized secession, also granted the Governor several specific executive powers. One of these was the establishment of a Republican Guard, with the Governor its supreme commander. He was further authorized to take any action necessary to protect the rights of the citizens against any actions of newly foreign national agents within the boundaries of the Republic, and to negotiate any mutual defense pacts with other Republics who might spring into being. By the time the Court had dismissed the SPLC case, the Governor had completed a teleconference with all counties and cities within the Republic, and explicitly authorized the responsible officials there to deputize all non-felons as they saw fit.
Individuals who had previously been convicted of federal crimes, including non-violent weapons possession, tax evasion, or drug possession, were henceforth pardoned and no longer considered felons in the Republic for the purpose of deputization. By sundown, the Republic could draw on the volunteer services of over a million armed adults, most of them military veterans.
Per the Governor’s instructions earlier that morning, the local sheriffs had begun submitting lists of the militia members with significant prior military experience who were willing to take positions in the Republican Guard. A military commissions board began assigning the Republican Guard’s officers and senior enlisted billets by noon the next day.
The Governor also authorized the detaining of any foreign national agents within the boundaries of the Republic, and the seizure and receipting for any assets of the formerly United States. Within hours, most of the foreign national overseers which had been posted in the local sheriff and police offices had been disarmed, and their equipment and credentials taken from them. Some of these overseers fled at the announcement of secession. Some of these were apprehended at the state border. Many fled to the national building in the capital, but the influx of refugees from various national agencies, and their families, were flooding the grounds, and many were turned away.
Other nationals fled to various national military reservations, but due to the jumpiness of the military police there, were shot by accident. Each base within the boundary of the Republic went into lockdown, and had to contend with a stream of off-base residents trying to gain access. The harried base commanders did their best to take in military dependent refugees, but some, particularly those families of active duty Wytanans sympathetic to the secession, refused to enter and preferred to stay outside. Those that did come were quartered in base gymnasiums, auditoriums, maintenance hangars, and anywhere else that cots and family partitions could be erected. Essentially, these bases were under quarantine.
Some nationals, particularly those staffing the DEA, BATFE, IRS and FBI, simply disappeared and were never seen again. A few shot it out with the locals, but were eventually subdued. Every single TSA agent at the Republic’s three airports left on available outgoing flights the first day.
As noted in our story above, a successful secession will immediately have to deal with inheriting the remnants of United States property and personnel within their borders. This becomes a problem in-being, rather than something which can be carefully negotiated first. And, to even attempt to address this issue or make policy beforehand will, in some eyes, be considered seditious, which is of course ludicrous unless free speech has already been suspended. Fortunately, we’re just considering these issues academically here.
By noon on the second day refugees at the federal building had exhausted all the available food. The administrator of the building agreed to accept the Governor’s offer of a writ of safe passage out of the Republic in exchange for surrendering of the building and grounds. The Governor, a man of his word, had the State, ahem, Republic police ensure an orderly loading of the refugees onto school busses and escort those busses to neighboring states. The nationals would be allowed to return on visas later to collect their personal belongings and make arrangements for the sale of their homes. A few decided to stay, move back into their homes and become Wytana citizens.
As a precaution, the Governor ordered the seizure of other non-military federal reservations, such as national forests. These, the legislature restored to the counties and localities within whose jurisdictions they lay. Several counties decided to offer these lands to refugees on a homestead basis.
The military bases were a tougher nut to crack. Stocked with better food, weapons, and the firm belief that national orders supercede the demands of the treasonous Wytanans, these base commanders saw their allegiance elsewhere. None agreed to surrender. Events would soon prove their judgment right.
Wytanans weren’t the only player here, of course. Within hours of the secession, the national media sprang into action and began filming human interest stories. Interviews with Wytanan senior citizens, welfare recipients, government contractors, CPAs, etc., all revolved around the same theme “where am I going to get my check?” One particularly tear-stained single welfare mother of five became the poster child of news reports backed by stirring refrains of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic”. These competed with news segment titles such as “First Secession, Is Slavery Next?” which filled the flat panel screens in homes across the nation. Lines into Washington were jammed with calls as worried citizens demanded action to save their family members in Wytana against slavery and mistreatment. President Obama’s staff revived his campaign Lincoln comparisons with his speeches about “Saving the Union” and “The New Gettysburg” and “Emancipation In Our Time”. His ratings were never higher, and the incipient events of the previous spring had been entirely forgotten in the public consciousness.
Foreign powers got in on the act almost immediately. Wytana, as it turns out, was the home of several dozen nuclear missile silos. Housed in bases stretching for hundreds of square miles, they were thinly guarded out there in the heartland. That fact made China in particular nervous, since many Wytanans found themselves out of jobs after several mills shut down and sent their work there in the past decade. China immediately offered President Obama their assistance in routing out the rebels, and hinted that if strong action wasn’t taken, and fast, China would be forced to take “defensive” measures on their own.
Briefed on this information, and flicking their political abacuses, Congress declared war for the first time since the age of FDR against the breakaway republic, and suspended Posse Comitatus. Wytanans living within the remainder of the United States, including families of military members, were rounded up by military units “for their own protection”, and Wytanans serving on active duty within the military were “reassigned” to administrative positions. These Wytanan dissidents, or worse, were joined by military members from other states which had strong secessionist movements, and who had voiced their opinions prior to the crisis. Oathkeepers in particular joined the Wytanans in being shuttled off to positions of no particular importance. The remainder of the military prepared for a blockade and attack on Wytana, as horror stories, most of them complete yellow media fabrications, filtered out from the state capital.
When the attack began, much of the assault on Wytana was conducted by Chinese special operations forces, while Americans provided security and logistics support, including transportation and attack drones. Chinese snipers were inserted by American helicopters at night to attack county and state leaders. The Governor’s Mansion was singled out for a dramatic “shock and awe” attack by a two-thousand pound GPS-guided bomb, as was the state capitol while the Legislature was in session. Within hours, the leadership of the secession had been effectively decapitated. Soon, the Lieutenant Governor capitulated as watchful drones hummed unseen high above his quarters.
Atrocities committed during the attack were chalked up to the Chinese forces. As a mock atonement, the Chinese responded with public execution of thousands of emaciated dissidents in poorly-fitting military uniforms. No one seemed to notice the incongruity, or was willing to point it out. The trials of the Wytanan survivors spanned decades, and secessionists were shunned from the public discussion for another century and a half. Gun elimination, not control, became a matter of public policy. Further, all law enforcement was reserved for a national civilian security force, in which no member is assigned duty in his home state, or any adjoining state.
Bummer. But, likely to happen pretty much that way. Remember, this was best case scenario in which the Wytanans themselves were overwhelmingly in favor of secession. How much harder will secession be in any circumstances short of that?
In his last moments as the blocks of the mansion came tumbling down upon him, the Governor of Wytana realized what Sheriff McGee knows, which is that the precipitating crisis just wasn’t big enough.
In the next installment, Crisis Secession, we discover how secessionists might plan for an alternate ending.
Tom Baugh is the author of Starving the Monkeys, Fight Back Smarter. He is also a former Marine, patented inventor, entrepreneur and professional irritant.
by Tom Baugh
In the previous articles in this series, we have discussed the implications of even the most civil secession movement, and the horrific consequences of even a best-case scenario. Yet, secessionists nobly believe that unbridled power at the national level is the root cause of many of the ills we see around us today. The previous installments of this series show what might happen should secessionists take a naive approach. The tentacles of the nationals surround us, in many cases at the urging of the nationalists in our midst.
In the previous installments, I presented an italicized hypothetical narrative as a framework for discussion of issues that would face a best-case secession. Even in the best-case, the nationalist tentacles, absent a major nationwide crisis which would overtax their command and control systems, lead to a counter-offensive which would crush a successful secession in days or weeks.
I now present an alternative scenario, which, as before, will be indicated by italics. This hypothetical scenario is gleaned from a study of history, and is an amalgam of historical fact, national security war-gaming, and discussions which might be happening at present in secessionist circles throughout the countryside. I present this alternative scenario in the form of a hypothetical secessionist’s handbook as an academic exercise to spark discussion. I address these issues only theoretically, but do not endorse any particular course of action beyond this academic discussion.
Crisis Secession Manual
It is clearly understood by our brethren that circumstances in our nation are rapidly becoming intolerable, yet most of our fellow citizens are distinguishing themselves as complicit in the slide toward totalitarianism. A naive secessionist might find to his horror that the majority of his fellow national citizens, rather than being grateful for being freed of their chains, will in fact demand an immediate return to the national status quo. The multitudes have instead been bought and paid for by property stolen from us.
It is essential that our brethren read and understand several sources of doctrine. As we learn from Che Guevara’s “Guerrilla Warfare”, refuse battle until we have popular support and the necessary conditions for victory in that battle. As long as we hold ourselves as independent creations of our God, enslaved to no man, the slave traders who surround us in our neighborhoods will never lend us popular support. This we accept as a fundamental principle. Instead of weakening our principles as the electables do, we commit ourselves to preparing for the crisis which must come. Our enemies’ own actions will defeat them, as we wait for their failed enslavement to run its due course. If the populace will not support liberty, then the evolutionary cycle, which must follow, will itself trim the herd of the slave traders among us as they grasp for their crumb which we choose to withhold from them. Those who survive will, on balance, be more sympathetic to our cause of liberty. As a result, we will inherit the pre-condition of inherent popular support in the progress and aftermath of that crisis.
So why does the author of that fictional secessionist manual recommend Che Guevara? Because it isn’t the leftist tome that you’ve been led to believe. This book is required reading in many military circles (take a close look at that URL while you are at it). Most of it will surprise you if you have never read it but have only heard what posterboard patriots have to say about it. Consider the following quote from Che’s first chapter alone:
“He (the guerrilla fighter) interprets the desires of the great peasant mass to be owners of land, owners of their means of production, of their animals, of all that which they have long yearned to call their own, of that which constitutes their life…”
Wow. What a bastard. As it turns out, both the coffee shop Marxist and the golf course conservative are wrong about this guy, or at least wrong about the message in his book. When I hear alligator tears being shed to keep the posterboard patriots from reading it, when I was paid by the taxpayer to read it as part of my professional Marine Corps education, I have to question the motives of the messenger. What don’t they want you to see? Granted, the guy was a genuine bastard and monstrous violator of human rights, but you have to recognize his proven credentials in the art of guerrilla warfare. The hypothetical author of that secessionist manual merely expects his readers to learn from the master.
Note also that we have unlocked the door to our own domestic policies, which could one day erupt in unlawful detention and torture of mere suspects. Let you or some of your family spend some time in a modern-day gulag, and you might find yourself inclined to find out more about what else Che had to say about his other area of expertise. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that, and that our elected representatives continue to defend our civil rights with vigor and fortitude. Our manual writer continues:
It is also essential that our brethren learn the concepts of Fourth Generation Warfare, on the large scale, and the principles of Maneuver Warfare, on the small. Surprise, speed, deception and local superiority against isolated pockets of a larger enemy are as valuable in the political and economic realm as they are in their military application. To this end, the professional reading lists required of senior Marine enlisted and officers are essential resources. Study them well, and understand them. A rifle is only as effective as the mind which directs it. Ignorance can destroy us as swiftly as a lack of ammunition or weapons, perhaps even more so. Shed of ignorance, we can always find means with which to fight, and paths to victory which allow our enemies to destroy themselves.
Understand this point clearly: gun control is not about controlling guns, it is about killing gun owners who would fight for their liberty. Especially, gun owners who are dangerous to tyrants even if unarmed, through the virtue of their ideas and skills alone. Yet, those who would fight for their freedoms are exactly the people who deserve to inherit our nation and restore its liberty, but that is impossible to accomplish if they are killed in a raid or by an unseen drone piloted by a Y-Box geek. You must survive to see the victory ahead. Those who would rely solely on stored guns, ammunition and food must also store away knowledge and skill against the day when those are in short supply as well. Our hypothetical secessionist author is pointing the way to an essential syllabus for his readers.
If we secede too early, our enemies will draw upon a vast reserve of resources. In the case of a single State or a handful of States, this larger reserve encompasses the United States as a whole. The necessary conditions are those in which the State forces would have a reasonable chance of taking, and holding, their State against nationalist invasion. This requires not one state, or a few states seceding, but ideally more than half, all at once, the remainder too disorganized to mount effective resistance in time before their own organic secessionists seize their opportunity.
To accomplish this, the advantages of the nationalists have to be neutralized, or even turned against them as weapons. We realize that the main advantage of the nationalists is to mobilize public opinion to accept any atrocity or lies. This advantage lies in the ability of the nationalists to bribe as much support as needed, regardless of the long-term effect on the health of the economy and the citizenry.
He’s on to something. To the typical check-casher citizen, whatever crumbs they get by anonymous theft from you, it beats what they are willing to earn on their own. The nationals, including elected government officials, and non-elected enforcement agents, are merely expressing the will of the majority. You and all your carping about liberty are the problem in their eyes. It matters not to them that their every sustenance is taken from you first. At least it doesn’t matter to them yet.
We can all agree that we are sliding toward a crisis of some kind. Whether your favorite crisis scenario involves monetary policy, food supplies, energy resources, or whatever, something bad is headed our way. For years, or decades, we have been clawing at the rails to slow down the train headed toward the cliff. There are a lot of bloody fingertips out there, but there is good news. Producers can survive a major crisis in far greater numbers than can the leeches who depend on those producers. So stop clawing.
Imagine Katrina. Now imagine a hundred simultaneous Katrina-scale crises, of any origin. An economic collapse, for example, would do. In that environment, will the nationals be able to round us up individually, or even attack us state-by-state? Will nationalist sympathizers in state and local offices be able to assist them? Most of these people will be overwhelmed. Most of the nationalist sympathizers will be wondering why the trucks aren’t bringing them their due. Within days or weeks many of these people will be fighting, and killing, each other. We just have to stay out of the way long enough, and then be ready to act. Much of the national capability to suppress us will be overwhelmed, and as such many of the national agents will be on their own, or in small clumps, and as such, receptive to gentle persuasion. We prepare the battlefield, not for the next national election cycle, but for that day. Our time will come.
So how does our hypothetical secessionist author help prepare this battlefield? Read on and find out.
We must whisper into the ears of our sheriffs and police chiefs about mass deputization. In a crisis, groups of deputized volunteers form the core, and teeth, of local militias. And if these officials will not hear our whispers, we must be ready to defeat them at the polls, or to replace them in a crisis should they resign. Never forget, however, that to the modern politician, his true constituency is the masses of the looter populace, not us.
We must also court the local or county managers and other legislative bodies. These have the ability, and responsibility, to authorize the law enforcement officials, and their militias, to seal the borders of their communities or counties, and to repel invasion. Further, in a crisis, keeping the looters bottled up in their localities gives our brethren there an opportunity to act more efficiently. Immigration policies could allow individuals with key skills or knowledge entry. For example, a doctor is probably always welcome, as are welders, machinists, engineers, housewives, and so on. That list is long. So is the list of undesirables, including white-collar professions which don’t add original value to civilization but simply leech from the productive.
One level up are the Governors’ mansions. These are currently populated, in general, by those who see their role in a crisis as redistribution of property, rather than as the preservers of property rights. We are determined to change this mindset immediately, and try to elect to these positions those who give undivided attention to the role of the States in liberty. These offices are also responsible for repeating the local deputization, only Statewide, and commanding the State Guard.
The various State legislators have the responsibility of handing the Governor the authority to arrest all national forces within the borders who are attempting to violate the rights of State citizens, including those who have so acted previously, and to seize national assets, by force if necessary, that are used by, or could be used by, nationals to launch attacks against State citizens. These assets could then be placed in the service of the State Guard or the local militias, as appropriate. As a result, courting current and prospective legislators is essential.
We secessionists realize that national office buildings are the first of several categories of key national assets. These serve the role of communication hubs, and staging points for national agents to mass against State citizens. Each such building has an official appointed to manage the facility; these individuals can surrender them to the State forces given suitable encouragement, leaving the national agents based there without their usual safehouse. These locations also contain vital intelligence useful for locating other safehouses and operational assets within the State.
We know that national military reservations would be a little harder to crack, at least at first until the base commanders could be convinced of the futility of continued resistance. Some of these national military reservations, such as air bases, for example, usually lack sufficient ground power to protect themselves. Conversely, ground assets in other locations will be deprived of their usual air power, and thus weakened and demoralized by the loss of their usual ace hole card.
Given a nationwide crisis of sufficient magnitude, many of these units will already be in the field. We secessionists realize that this combination will give the State Guards and militias the ability to overwhelm most national reservations without firing a shot. Deprived of their home bases, including the administrative and logistic support found there, many fielded units will also collapse quickly and wish to simply return to their homes and families. The various secessionist Governors should accept the tendered surrender of these national assets with grace and civility and to return these areas to the service of the citizens of their State.
But we are not bloodthirsty villains. We secessionists plan to welcome worthy suburban survivors and homestead them on seized national parks. As such, encourage the productive few you meet to not fear the impending collapse. Instead, encourage them to use the remaining time before this crisis to prepare themselves with useful knowledge and skills.
The crisis is the key. Without it, and the subsequent decimation of the leeches who would oppose us, we secessionists will find ourselves perpetually outnumbered. We will not precipitate this crisis, but we will use it to defeat those who would enslave us with it. Prior to the full fruition of the crisis, our best efforts to secede, or even vote secessionists into office, will be thwarted, and destroyed piecemeal. Guaranteed.
But in peacetime, pre-crisis, how does our hypothetical secessionist author propose that his fellows stack the deck of the sheriffs, mayors, city councils, governors and legislators needed to carry out this plan?
We shall explore this topic tomorrow in the last article in this series, Stacking the Deck.
Tom Baugh is the author of Starving the Monkeys, Fight Back Smarter. He is also a former Marine, patented inventor, entrepreneur and professional irritant.
by Tom Baugh
In the previous five articles in this series we saw how hypothetical secessionists might plan to strip the nationals of key resources. A secessionist might view certain national resources within their midst as bases from which the nationals might launch oppression. A key element of our hypothetical secessionist author’s plan is to use a nationwide crisis as a trigger condition for launching a coordinated multi-state secession movement.
As stated in the previous installment, this hypothetical scenario is gleaned from a study of history, and is an amalgam of historical fact, national security war-gaming, and discussions which might be happening at present in secessionist circles throughout the countryside. I present this alternative scenario in the form of a hypothetical secessionist’s handbook as an academic exercise to spark discussion. I address these issues only theoretically, but do not endorse any particular course of action beyond this academic discussion. We continue with our hypothetical Crisis Secession Manual in italics.
The crisis is the key. Without it, and the subsequent decimation of the leeches who would oppose us, we secessionists will find ourselves perpetually outnumbered. We will not precipitate this crisis, but we will use it to defeat those who would enslave us with it. Prior to the crisis, our best efforts to secede, or even vote secessionists into office, will be thwarted, and destroyed piecemeal. Guaranteed.
But in peacetime, pre-crisis, how does our hypothetical secessionist author propose that his fellows stack the deck of the sheriffs, mayors, city councils, governors and legislators needed to carry out this plan? It is practically impossible to elect liberty-minded folks to Washington, and have them remain that way for very long. There is a long list of reasons why, but these reasons are beyond the scope of this series. Suffice it to say that they get absorbed and power-drunk once they realize that the majority of the people in this country demand robbery and extortion by them from you.
But what about the local officials, including the sheriffs, mayors, city councils, state legislators and Governors? There is actually a chance to make a difference there. For one thing, the check-cashing leeches tend to pay far less attention to local and state elections. The checks available from those folks just aren’t that large. It is entirely conceivable for dedicated secessionists to field and elect some of these folks today. Hardly anyone will notice. Would you? Be warned, however, the same system which produces corrupt county commissioners will still be a force to be contended with.
But a nationwide, large-scale crisis will provide secessionists with an unparalleled opportunity. To exploit this opportunity, however, we must be ready. To this end, we must become involved with local grassroots organizations, not to carry posters, but to recruit those dissatisfied with mere posterboard. They are our allies in this fight which must come. From our number, recruited from whatever source, we may select our fellows who will one day serve in these key positions when the current officeholders quail in fear.
This sounds extreme on first reading, but I point the interested reader to the reaction of Kathleen Blanco, then-Governor of Louisiana during Katrina. She folded. During a crisis for which she should have been mentally prepared, she found herself totally out of her depth. Many of our current crop of politicians will do exactly the same thing. In such a state (of mind), these individuals will become frozen, particularly as their national nursemaids are busy elsewhere.
In this environment, many state officials may tender untimely resignations. Others may cite personal reasons, such as a desire to spend a little more time with their families. Others may be convinced of the wisdom of resignation. It is at this point that we have an opportunity to, in-extremis, populate these positions with pro-Constitution, pro-States’-rights, and pro-secessionist minds. I leave the details of implementing this necessary succession phase to others.
Regardless, we need to make sure that we have our Secessionist slate of potential office-holders prepared in advance. All others, dealing with the crisis as an interruption of their power, will be in chaos. We, seeing the crisis as the opportunity that it is, can be prepared accordingly.
As such, we need to convene in our various States, not to amend the Constitution, but to prepare our slates of future local and state office holders. The Constitution is fine; the problem there is that no one pays attention to it any more. No, our problem is in our local communities and our states; our problems surround us.
We need to know who our top three picks for each Governor are among our number. We need to identify two or three secessionist candidates for each spot in the legislatures. We need to identify who these people will appoint as the leadership of the State Guards. We need to know who our top two picks are for each sheriff and police chief, mayor and councilman. And then when the time comes, and the current office holders falter or resign in the face of chaos or reasoned encouragement, we had better be ready with more than just intellectual yak.
In effect, we need to have a shadow government in-being, waiting in the wings. This is not a subversion, but a preparation, by deciding who among our fellow citizens are worthy of being our official servants when the time comes. To decide, we need to consider key litmus issues, each of which reveals a candidate’s deep understanding of liberty in all its forms.
One such first litmus issue our hypothetical secessionists might choose is the drug war. No public policy has been more destructive to liberty in the name of good than this. Militarized police, no-knock entry, breeding grounds for individual and gang violence, criminalization of gun ownership, unlimited property seizure for mere proximity to certain molecules; all of these and more are the spawn of the drug war. All in the name of protecting a class of people who would do us all a favor by keeling over dead from an overdose.
Even those who call themselves conservatives get in on the act. Incredulously, these people, who howl in anguish if a locality seizes their property based on an increase in tax base, think that it is perfectly OK to teach you a lesson in obedience by making you susceptible to property seizure even if evidence is planted on you. Or perhaps it is done for the children; yet your children are more at risk from being caught experimenting than the experimentation itself. At least I know mine are, since I have taught them from an early age the risks and horrors of drug use. Some conservatives, who are against socialized healthcare, complain that if we don’t stop drugs then we’ll have to pay for the care of those who use them. Why? Why not just not write that check either?
I could go on and on about the drug war and similar victimless crimes, but the bottom line is that those who favor the drug war have a basic disconnect with the Constitution. People should be free to live their lives, and be free to destroy them. Or to smash their unprotected skulls on the pavement when they crash their motorcycle.
Another key litmus issue is debt-free currency. Much has been written about this topic elsewhere, but the bottom line is that our circulating currency should not be used as a means to transfer wealth to a small group of powerful men.
A third key litmus issue is gun rights. I’m sure I’m speaking to the choir here. And not just those weapons which are currently OK for us to own. We need to unroll the carpet quite a bit here. The concept of a militia isn’t just for farmers and pitchforks, it is for all the modern equivalents of pitchforks and muskets, too. See this article for more ideas about how to give the local kids something useful to do away from the Nintendo.
A fourth key litmus issue is civility versus liberty. In our cookie-cutter world, we’ve been bred to value civility over liberty. One pundit even refers to this as the Civilest of Wars. How absurd. I wonder, did our forefathers have their pinky fingers in the air as they shoved the bayonet into the heart of the agents of their oppressors? Someone who is trying to take my liberty does not deserve my civility. That I reserve for my patriot brethren with whom I desire to live in peace. Civility, like respect, must be earned, not demanded, and can never be placed above liberty. Which is why we must be tolerant of offense in others, rather than immediately rise to pass laws to restrict those we consider rude lest their chains be placed around our necks also.
A fifth key litmus issue is public versus private charity. True charity is an individual, private decision, and is tempered by judgment by the giver to determine worthiness of the recipient. Those who would implement charity by robbing us should never be placed in a position of public power. We all see where enforced public charity has led us.
With the appropriate litmus tests, which probe the liberty quotient of our fellow man during nothing more than casual discussions as we meet them, or read their online words, we can decide beforehand who is worthy to be our servants in office. And then, we wait, for our time will surely come.
It almost goes without saying that those of our fellows currently in these positions who have assisted the nationals in peacetime not be entertained as suitable candidates. When the nationals come to take your guns, watch and remember the names and faces of those in local uniform who assist them. Your time will come.
As a man of science and faith, the two being mutually supporting in my view, I am always eager to try experiments to probe the mysteries of Creation. Here’s another such experiment. When asked to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, make one little change: “… one nation, under God, (pause), with liberty and justice for all.” Don’t rush past the “indivisible” part, just pause, and by so doing emphasize its absence. Those around you may notice, and so this becomes a great ice-breaker. Most, believing the fairy tales they have been taught, might flee from you in panic. But you just might find a kindred spirit, too. A secessionist’s heart might be warmed by the prospect of a large gathering in which silence reigns supreme in place of that word. Or at least greatly diminished in volume, which in itself says much. We can only hope.
More likely, however, is that you will find, as I do, that many more than half of our fellow citizens worship at the altar of national supremacy. And worship at that altar so strongly that they chide you, or worse, for your treasonous silence. A few veterans, incredulously, may even lambaste you with two conflicting assertions: “I took an oath to the Constitution” and “how dare you talk about secession.” Secessionists need no lecture as to the conflict in these two assertions. That little experiment will tell you a lot about your fellow man, and the forces against which we are arrayed.
As we have seen in this series, secession is not a topic to be considered lightly. Among intellectual circles it has gained a certain amount of momentum, but we also need to be clear about the risks involved. Should we head down that path as these united States, we need to understand reality as it is, and not what we wish it to be.
Our hypothetical secessionist author might conclude his manual with the following flourish:
When our numbers have grown sufficiently, or theirs have diminished, leave not one square inch of ground upon which the nationals may land. Drain the swamps from which these reptiles slither.
Tom Baugh is the author of Starving the Monkeys, Fight Back Smarter. He is also a former Marine, patented inventor, entrepreneur and professional irritant.