It seems obvious to me that the United States as it is now can’t survive politically. It will take time, of course, but this nation is eventually going to split apart. No compromise is possible between the Tea Party and the rest of us.
In Salon today, Michael Lind, Policy Director of the Economic Growth Program at the New America Foundation, identifies the underlying forces at work in the Tea Party and reminds us that:
Following defeat in the Civil War, the former Confederate states regrouped as “the Solid South,” a one-party region, first Democratic and now Republican, that has tended to vote as a bloc in national affairs. The South sought to block the federal civil rights revolution by a policy of “massive resistance” to court orders ordering racial integration. Some Southern states went so far as to try to abolish their public school systems rather than integrate them.
It is hard to avoid seeing a link between this racist rationale for privatization and modern conservative plans to scale back Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, relied on disproportionately by black and brown Americans and low-income whites, while increasing taxpayer subsidies to private retirement and healthcare accounts enjoyed mostly by affluent whites.
Look, I have a lot of friends who are Southern. And they joke about “damyankees” and so on. But when they talk about the South rising again, they’re only half joking.
The South never willingly joined the rest of America. The Confederate states were savagely defeated. And they have never accepted that defeat.
Noting that the Tea Party members of Congress are overwhelmingly Southern, Lind writes:
Contradicting the mainstream media narrative that the Tea Party is a new populist movement that formed spontaneously in reaction to government bailouts or the Obama administration, the facts show that the Tea Party in Congress is merely the familiar old neo-Confederate Southern right under a new label. The threat of Southern Tea Party representatives and their sidekicks from the Midwest and elsewhere to destroy America’s credit rating unless the federal government agrees to enact Dixie’s economic agenda of preserving defense spending while slashing entitlements is simply the latest act of aggression by the Solid South.
The impeachment of their fellow Southerner Bill Clinton was an attempted coup d’état by the Southern white minority in the United States, which, as in 1860, was frustrated because its candidate lost the presidential election.
And he points out there’s not even one Tea Party member from New England.
As I read Lind’s article, it occurred to me that New England has a lot more in common with Canada than with Texas or Mississippi. So why not form a political alliance with Ontario and the Maritimes – and bid the South goodbye?
There’s not a lick of difference between British Columbia and Washington (state), Oregon and California. That would be a like-minded grouping.
And, of course, the Prairies are the Prairies. The US- Canada border in that region is absolutely artificial.
I don’t know who would take Quebec, though.
Maybe Quebec could join Louisiana and they could spend their time squabbling over French grammar.