End of an Empire?
The gulf between blue America and red America is widening as Americans grow increasingly hostile to one another.
And individual states are becoming more eager to go their own way.
I just read about a poll showing Californians increasingly favor secession. And I expect the secessionist trend is becoming stronger throughout the nation.
I’m sure you know how much Texas wants to leave the union. And I wouldn’t be surprised if the South were to rise again and march off in search of the Nineteenth Century.
The assault on Obamacare is likely to add momentum to the secessionist movement. Republican Senators Susan Collins and Bill Cassidy have introduced a plan to let the states decide whether they want to keep Obamacare, and I suspect that whatever the Republicans finally do to “replace” the current health care law, they will give the states more say in its implementation.
Already, individual states are announcing their own visions of health care reform.
Health insurance is not the only area in which the states will become more independent. Several states have legislated their own minimum wages, for example And as the Republican Congress shreds the social safety net, states will be obliged to provide more welfare services.
Hot-button issues like environmental protection and public education are also likely to prompt unilateral action by states as the Trump cabinet demolishes federal standards.
Another divisive issue in America is legalization of marijuana. If the feds decide to turn back the clock, the states that have legalized pot could be motivated to leave the union.
In the current political climate, it doesn’t really matter how big a wall Trump builds along the Mexican border or how formidable an army he amasses. America is threatened more by internal dissension than by terrorists and other external foes.
I don’t know how long it will take, but I see America unraveling into a loose union of autonomous principalities, some more democratic and progressive than others. I see the mightiest empire in history slowly crumbling as the states comprising it squabble with one another and Washington becomes less and less relevant – at home and in the world.