Thursday, September 20, 2012

National Disintegration Thoughts Inspired by Kissinger's "A World Restored"

Do you happen to know a PhD candidate? I'm sure you know one. Ever consider reading their dissertation? I bet it would be awful. Kissinger's dissertation was so spectacular that it was printed years later as "A World Restored". I have yet to meet a PhD that I would expect to write as eloquently and provide as good of analysis of a subject as Kissinger did with his. His style, his analysis and his critique of the players are excellent and still hold up today 50 years later. Kissinger mines primary documents to explain the situation, the world and the players so that a layman may understand. Reading this book kicked off a rush of reading books on 19th century Europe to get a better feel for a wild era that saw the rise of the nation state and liberalization of governments. This is not a book for everyone, so I do not recommend it unless you are a lover of history or foreign policy.

There is another group of people I would recommend this for study. If one expects the demographic shift and decline of the USA to continue, there are two possible outcomes:

1. The USA collapses but quickly resets with much lower living standards. The USA slides into a Brazilian or Indian styled ineffective, jumbled country of wide ethnic and religious diversity with massive income inequality. Odds: 7-5.

2. The existing order collapses followed by a breakup of the US along ideological and slight ethnic lines with emigration allowed over a 12-24 month period. Odds: 5-1.

Kissinger's work "A World Restored" would be highly useful for a politician attempting to work the second scenario for the (overwhelmingly white) conservative nation state (CNS). Reading this book, one sees how Metternich set the tone as his means and aims were legit as they were accepted by the prevailing customs and treaties, handled widely different peers, wrestled with a revolutionary figure in Napoleon, worked for legitimacy to position Austria as the swing state, and had to deal with the pressure of being a central power on a continent of multiple powers. The lessons are wide ranging, and the Metternich role is the role to focus on in Kissinger's review of the late Napoleonic/early Pax-Britannia era.

A Metternich figure would have to first be a statesman that is willing to be the power broker and shaper of the order without grabbing for personal power. Metternich was known as the prime minister of Europe, but he had little internal power in his government’s domestic affairs. The CNS statesman would be primarily focused on conserving the power structure of red state US into the CNS as the current era's complexity collapses, which it will. Just recently out of office, well respected, a true conservative of the Goldwater/Coolidge type (paleocon, not neocon), and not a drinker of the current PC kool aid narrative. It's setting up the order administratively to executive ideologically the existing worldview that the CNS would want (allowing for the short emigration period) before the other sides catch on that their worldview is not conducive to long term success. This fellow would have to talk the Bos-DC corridor types into this being a liberation for them to get the eruopean/socialist/PC crap stuff finally that the knuckledraggers of the south and midwest have been blocking. He would be playing to their arrogance and self deception with regards to PC crap. Using function, process and appeals to custom, talking the other side into your plan as if it were a big win for them was a Metternich strength.

A move for secession which truly separates any governmental link between regions would also need an appeal to true constitutional intent and the rule of law. This is against the liberal living constitution and feelings override logic approach. This appeal though is based on long standing customs and would have legitimacy attached to it through the custom and legal history of the US. If the Feds never charge Wall St with any crimes into the 2020s, this will carry even more credibility as the blue state 'other' is not enforcing the laws either for top financial criminals or the low level thugs they catch and release often. An oppressive regime (anarcho-tyranny to the max) would be fertile soil for secession seeds. The message would matter.

This figure being out of office and an elder statesman would be best equipped to manipulate that SWPL dream of the northeast corridor as a quasi-socialist playground. Having witnessed the transformation of the left from economic inequality/union driven interests into the coalition of victim groups with an uberrich financial cream on top, this man would understand how to handle whatever figure are their big guns at the time. This stable legitimacy driven figure would also be a good contrast to whatever La Raza styled Mexican leader would emerge for the "North Mexico" area I see wishing to break off. A self styled La Raza leader will emerge eventually, and this will splinter the Dems as the pie can only be sliced so much and blacks won't give in easily, so Mexican voters may just say "we're out". Speculative I know, but plausible. A statesman contrasting his aims for a CNS in middle america from the rockies to the old confederacy would be a distinct contrast and carried by the appeals to law and custom compared to the revolutionary La Raza figure who would most likely use their charisma and the media for a distinct ethnic or racial goal.

By making the CNS position a position based on law and custom, establishing legitimacy as the accepted notion of proper government, the CNS would become the pivot state for the break up. Metternich was good knowing that territorial concessions did not matter if an ally couldn't be counted on or order and power could not be enforced or exercised in that area. Conceding territory for the right to be fully sovereign within that territory is a fantastic trade to make. As the central power on the continent, Austria had weaknesses others did not. They had multiple borders to defend and control. This would pose the Rockies to the Southeast CNS in a similar fashion as they would have the "North Mexico" state to their southwest, and who knows what may happen to the Bos-DC corridor state 10-20 years after emigration (yes, I assume blacks would flee a CNS for the Northeast). Despite the USA making a mockery out of the Peace of Westphalia concept, this CNS statesman would have to consider the laws and rights of their new state as above petty territorial squabbles (splitting up some other federal assets as well).

Slight tangent, but a historian once said that a nation needed a founding myth. The moment the founding myth is lost the nation will cease to exist. The last 50 years have seen the smearing of the founding of America as the Pilgrim’s story and Jamestown are now associated with genocide of the Indians and slavery. Add in the fact that we’ve imported millions recently from the entire 3rd world who have no connection to that myth and national unity erodes. This breakup would allow the original ideals to be transplanted and incorporated into the new founding myths. For example, SWPL/libs of the Bos-DC corridor would use the the Puritan freedom seeking tradition to abolitionist New Englanders to Emerson + Thoreau to the SWPL state of enlightened thinking. The Rockies-old confederacy area would use the pioneer/freedom seeking religious settler myth to form the last bastion of freedom and religion in the West. Both places and peoples are heirs to origin ideals that secretly were once used just for our one nation. Propaganda and mythmaking are that easy and effective.

This statesman must think long term. Trading horses will not matter much beyond one generation. The core features to keep focused on would be emigration, rights and laws within own borders, and nukes. Emigration to ensure the types of people that make up the nation that are conducive to one’s way of life. Rights and laws that allow enforcing a nation’s codes without interference are critical to cement the start up.  Yes, nuclear weapons will matter because of international matters. Before making this incredibly long, I will save the foreign policy variables for another post. A break up or secession period might seem farfetched now, but pay attention to deep currents. The localtarian idea, technology, sustainable communities, 3D printing, problems of complexity in society along with the cultural split between regions as well as the polarization of politics as one side continues to deviate from long standing  traditional norms (causing reaction) will all contribute to this becoming a reality.

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