Daily Archives: November 15, 2012
People are talking about a petition for Texas to secede. Obviously it’s never going to happen but it’s fun to think about, and so there have been blog posts about it, but it seems to me that they’re profoundly lacking in imagination.
Bob Smiley at the Daily Caller points to Texas’s natural resources to suggest it can pull it off. But with the exception of Norway (more on which below), natural resources are more often a curse, generating the “Dutch disease”, exogenous shocks, and political corruption (think Russia).
Annie Lowrey at Foreign Policy thinks an independent Texas would whither, but because it would be crushed by war and embargo from the remaining United States. The problem is that there’s no reason to think Texas independence has to be violent.
Most likely, it would not be. This is the 21st century. The US is a democracy. If Texas had an independence movement akin to, say, Scotland’s National Party or the Bloc Québécois that achieved enough success to decisively win an independence referendum, would a sitting President really order an invasion? Would the American public, many of whom have family links to Texas, really stand for that? It is, at the very least, highly doubtful.