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.