Thursday, February 2, 2017

Calexit, an Unintended Comedy Act

...my opinion is that no state can, in any way lawfully, get out of the Union, without the consent of the others; and that it is the duty of the President, and other government functionaries to run the machine as it is. -December 17, 1860 Letter to Thurlow Weed by Abraham Lincoln

While I usually take politics rather seriously...really quite seriously, every now and then I come across something that makes me smirk and roll my eyes, but it is truly a very rare pleasure that find something I would call so ironically ridiculous and amusing that it qualifies as perpetual "comic relief." I will try to contain my laughter while I explain.

California is going to have a vote in the spring of 2019 about whether or not to secede from the United States and become its own sovereign nation. The last time this happened with several southern states, it did not go well, but let's put aside the possibility of another war between the states and just look over their gripes.



1. PEACE AND SECURITY
The U.S. Government spends more on its military than the next several countries combined. Not only is California forced to subsidize this massive military budget with our taxes, but Californians are sent off to fight in wars that often do more to perpetuate terrorism than to abate it. The only reason terrorists might want to attack us is because we are part of the United States and are guilty by association. Not being a part of that country will make California a less likely target of retaliation by its enemies.

Do they think those tax subsidies toward a massive military budget will just go away? Will California not have to have its own military or does it believe that no military is needed?

Californian is a coastal state that seems to believe without U.S. military services like the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy, and U.S. Border Patrol it will be less of a target than it is now. As I see it either terrorists will either attack them while they are weak militarily or they will just infiltrate California because its open immigration policies will allow them to do so. Californians could find that terrorists set up bases there and right on our border. And since the U.S. is at war against terrorists (and countries that harbor them).... Well, at least it will not be another war between the states, at that point it will be more like the West Bank.


2. ELECTIONS AND GOVERNMENT
California’s electoral votes haven’t affected a presidential election since 1876. On top of that, presidential election results are often known before our votes are even counted. So, why should we keep subjecting ourselves to presidents we play no role in electing, to 382 representatives and 98 senators we can’t vote for, and all the government officials and federal judges appointed by those very same people we don’t elect.

Oh, boo-hoo! Really! California with 55 electoral votes has more than any state! Imagine what the 34 states with just 10 and less electoral votes feel in comparison to California's 55, or the fifteen states with 5 and less, or the eight states with just 3 and less. There are only five states that have 20 or more electoral votes not counting California.

Fact check this: California has 17 electoral votes more than Texas, the second most populous state, and just 3 votes less than the two next populous states of New York and Florida, both having 29 making 58 combined! And yet California is upset that it does have not real influence on the presidential pick for 140 years. Well...what is that favorite chant of the liberals? Oh, yeah. "Tell me what democracy looks like! This is what democracy looks like!" The little states and those with smaller populations, minority states actually, still have a voice in the elections because of the republic system with an electoral college...and aren't the liberals the ones who boast that they are pro-minorities?


3. TRADE AND REGULATION
The U.S. Government maintains a burdensome trade system that hurts California’s economy by making trade more difficult and more expensive for California’s businesses. As long as California remains within this burdensome trade system, we will never be able to capitalize on the trade and investment opportunities that would be available to us as an independent country. On top of that, the United States is dragging California into the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement which conflicts with our values.

For one, California has burden itself with some of the country's harshest laws against businesses that hurts its own economy. Two, President Trump has (in just the last few days) nixed the Trans-Pacific Partnership that was Obama's pet project. 


4. DEBT AND TAXES
Since 1987, California has been subsidizing the other states at a loss of tens and sometimes hundreds of billions of dollars in a single fiscal year. As a result, we are often forced to raise taxes and charge fees in California, and borrow money from the future to make up the difference. This is partly why California presently has some of the highest taxes in the country, and so much debt. Independence means that all of our taxes will be kept in California based on the priorities we set, and we will be able to do so while repaying our debts and phasing out the current state income tax.

This is the one that made me laugh the most. What have liberals, particularly Hollywood liberals, been saying for years? That they welcome higher taxes so that the government will have more and better social programs for the poor? Now they are complaining of how high their taxes are because they are subsidizing poorer states? This just sounds like a conservative view to me. What will happen when they figure out that having sanctuary cities (and now wanting a sanctuary country) for all those illegal aliens is a huge drain?


5. IMMIGRATION
California is the most diverse state in the United States and that is something we are proud of. This diversity is a central part of our culture and an indispensable part of our economy. As a U.S. state, our immigration system was largely designed by the 49 other states thirty years ago. This immigration system has since neglected the needs of the California economy and has hurt too many California families. Independence means California will be able to decide what immigration policies make sense for our diverse and unique population, culture, and economy, and that we’ll be able to build an immigration system that is consistent with our values.

Each state has its own diversity, California does not have a corner on that market, but placing this argument aside. I really have no idea what a California immigration system would look like since it is not explained here, but I have to ask what are the needs of the California economy in regards to immigration? Are we talking Hollywood elitists being able to contract servants and construction workers on the cheap and without providing health insurance for them?


6. NATURAL RESOURCES
Certain minerals and other natural resources like coal, oil, and natural gas are being extracted from California at below market value rates by private corporations with the permission of the U.S. Government. While a small portion of the revenue is shared with us, our share has been withheld during times of sequestration. That means the U.S. Government is paying their debts with royalties collected from selling off California’s natural resources. Independence means we will gain control of the 46% of California that is currently owned by the U.S. Government and its agencies. We will therefore take control of our natural resources and be the sole beneficiary of royalties collected if and when they are extracted from our lands.

Let's be completely honest here. Most of that natural resources in California would not be tapped at all because of the strictness of California's laws. If California takes control, it will either close them down or make it so costly that it is not worth to extract its own resources. How long will it be before California will need to import resources from other countries that it will not extract within its own borders due to inflexible environment protection laws?


7. THE ENVIRONMENT
California is a global leader on environmental issues. However, as long as the other states continue debating whether or not climate change is real, they will continue holding up real efforts to reduce carbon emissions. The truth is this country accounts for less than five percent of the world’s population yet consumes one-third of the world’s paper, a quarter of the world’s oil, 27 percent of the aluminum, 23 percent of the coal, and 19 percent of the copper. Independence means California will be able to negotiate treaties to not only reduce the human impact on our climate but also to help build global resource sustainability.

And there is where those harsh laws on businesses will kill its own economy. Environment over economy only works when one country is buying its goods from another that has less restriction because it values economy over environment. The United States tries to keep a balance that is a compromise on both sides of these issues.

By the way, climate change is real. The climate changes every day. The debate is about whether carbon emissions is having a real effect on the environment, especially when we find out that global warming was not just an Earth issue but an issue with every planet in our solar system, because of the higher temperature of the sun. 


8. HEALTH AND MEDICINE
The Affordable Care Act was enacted by the U.S. Government to lower the cost of health care and expand health insurance coverage to the uninsured, yet millions of Californians still lack access to quality health care because they can’t afford it. For many, access to hospitals and medicine is a life or death issue. Independence means we can fund the health care programs we want and ensure everyone has access to the medicines they need because our taxes will no longer be subsidizing other states. Finally, California can join the rest of the industrialized world in guaranteeing health care as a universal right for all of our people.

Both California Democratic Senators voted in favor of the Affordable Care Act and in the House is was 34 California Democratic Representatives for and 19 Republicans against. In addition, Nancy Pelosi of California and majority leader even said "But we have to pass the [health care] bill so that you can find out what’s in it....” Is it possible that California politicians really did not know what was in it, yet voted for it, which not only affected its state but all the others?

It was impossible for it to be affordable, but it was a liberal idea so it should have worked, right? So let's see how this one will probably work: Immigrants will flock to California in greater numbers than they do now. Illegal immigrants will probably try to leave the other states just to get California's free health care. Bankruptcy will be within months. Will California then be asking to re-enter as a state?

As much as I hate to say this, health care is not a right. A right is something you have because you exist. It does not infringe on anyone else or on the rights of another. A right is something it would be against the law for it to be taken from you as it is against the law to harm your person or your property or to take the life of another. In the United States, we have a protected right to carry arms, because that right does not infringe on anyone else, but if a firearm is misused, it can, and that is why we have a court system to keep people accountable. Who would one be able to sue if you do not have health care? Can you force anyone to give you health care? Would that not be an infringement of his rights?


9. EDUCATION
California has some of the best universities but in various ways, our schools are among the worst in the country. Not only does this deprive our children of the education they deserve, but it also costs taxpayers billions in social services and law enforcement expenses linked to lacking opportunities resulting from poor education. Independence means we will be able to fully fund public education, rebuild and modernize public schools, and pay public school teachers the salaries they deserve. On top of that, independence means freedom from federal education policies and one-size-fits-all standards set by political appointees on the other side of the continent.

Here I have several thoughts. One is that when a number of illegal immigrants jump the border, they do not speak English nor do their children. Language incompatibility slow the pace in classrooms and the education of all the students suffer. Another is that if California wants total control of education, it should refuse federal funding and tell its politicians that they should not have adopted Common Core back in 2010; it was a choice, not a mandate. California does not need to secede from the United States to fix this one because it already has control over its education.


Of course, before the presidential election, this Calexit idea was already simmering, but when Trump won the presidency, it went into a rolling boil.

Maybe California has gotten a bit presumptuous because it has the 6th highest gross domestic product (GDP) at $2.448 trillion in 2015, which is largely due to the entertainment industry, yet it is ignoring its $778 billion debt. I really do not care if the liberals of California actually manage a secession or not—Bye-bye, Calexit. You have my permission to panic, run away, and take a bunch more libs with you!—although I highly doubt it will. Still, I think about how nice it would be to leave the United States with a more conservative bent. However, despite that it is largely a liberal democratic state, it is highly conservative republican along its eastern border and presently it is said that only 1 out of 3 Californians open to the idea of secession.

In the end, Calexit just is another indication of how terribly polarized my country has become. And I will say that while Trump was not my pick and I may not like many things about his personality, I do like that he is decisive and determined to do as he said he would do. To me, he is like a crude cowboy dressed up in a gentleman's suit. He is not PC and he says what he thinks and follows up with what he said he would do. So far, I am pleasantly surprised with his choices.

My Lord, do help my country to stand strong and stay strong.

2 comments:

  1. We seem to be travelling similar spiritual paths & reaching similar conclusions ~ AGAIN!

    ReplyDelete

Thank you fellow travelers for walking and talking with me along this journey.