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Post Partisan
Posted at 05:29 PM ET, 11/14/2012

Milbank and seceding success

It’s now a week after The Most Important Election of Our Lifetimes (2012 Edition) and the red and blue teams are all about the wounds. Lick ’em, if you’re a Republican; salt ’em, if you’re a Democrat. It’s the rhetoric you do as a partisan to make yourself feel better, and without it there would be no PostScript Bunker! Boo!

Dana Milbank writes today about a sour-grape reservoir over at We The People, a petitioning site run by the White House, which has of late been overrun by bids to let states secede from the United States, presumably because their citizens are disappointed in the outcome of the national election. Milbank points out that letting those states with the most signatures actually secede would make the country much better off financially, since those states — loosely, the states that went for Mitt Romney and, even more loosely, the states that went for Jefferson Davis — have a tendency to take in more federal money than they send back in federal taxes. Cut ’em loose, and, the theory goes, the fiscal cliff becomes more of a fiscal valley.

Music to the ears of those tending to post-election wounds with sodium or saliva. We got 5,000 comments, featuring both substances.

publius29 figures cutting off interstate migration would screw up the blue states:

According to the census, the growing states are Red States because that’s where the jobs are. Unfortunately, the blue staters leave their states with depressed economies and move to places like New Hampshire, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia, to find jobs. The states then gradually become purple, then blue. Finally, the blue staters vote in the same sorts of policies that caused them to leave the original blue states to begin with. Like locusts, after they’re completed despoiling the state, they move on to more fertile territory.

kblink46 says that allowing secession is too kind to red-staters:

Keep the land and force them to self deport.

rhc52 agrees:

Withdraw all military troops and equipment and let Mexico have at ’em.

Owie. Anyone got some nice bipartisan Neosporin?

ericcallenking does. Taxes might be lopsided, but resource-extraction can even out the scale:

The whole takers versus makers argument is absurd, whether . . . [you’re] talking about states or people. A large part of our current wealth comes from the natural gas from fracking, keeping energy prices lower for years to come, this comes mostly from red states and is not part of the whole who pays taxes equation, but it certainly contributes to the nations wealth and the blue states would be poorer for the lack.

sesimpson1 would rather not judge Americans entirely on whom 51 percent of their states voted for:

You are all acting as though everyone who lives in a red state votes for ridiculous tea party, socially conservative ideals. Millions of us VOTED for Obama, millions of us pay attention to the news, millions of us gladly pay our taxes, and millions of us work hard and are very proud to live in this nation. The distinct nations cannot be divided by red states and blue states.

weather3014 says the makers and takers labels might be totally different, post-economic crisis:

Hey Dana: Right, but don’t forget to include loans to states for unemployment trust funds. California owes about $9.8 Billion. Do you think they will ever pay that back? I don’t think so. NY owes $3.1 Billion. Just wait until Superstorm Sandy gets factored in.

jhillmurphy is interested in seeing a version of this plan take shape in one of the states as an experiment:

I’m not for any state seceding, but I think it would be worth it for one state to not use the federal government for a period of time — say, 5 years or 10 (except for defense). It can enact privatization of roads, schools, not collect taxes, except for a flat one to pay for Defense, not have Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid, etc. Basically, we can all observe if and how an Ayn Rand society works. The people who fervently believe in that type of society can live in the state. I don’t think a mostly privatized state would function very efficiently, but maybe I’d be proved wrong.

On behalf of the Free Republic of Bunkerstan, PostScript the Great (first of her name) endorses this plan. But she’s going to keep paying federal taxes and let the FBI in whenever it wants. And disdain both makers and takers, just in case.

By Rachel Manteuffel  |  05:29 PM ET, 11/14/2012

 
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