James Leroy Wilson's blog

Monday, September 26, 2005

The Middlebury Institute

A new think tank is being created to study and promote secession. From the "Middlebury Declaration:"

It is important to realize that the separatist/independence movement is the most important and widespread political force in the world today and has been for the last half-century, during which time the United Nations, for example, has grown from 51 nations in 1945 to 193 nations in 2004. The break-up of the Soviet Union and the former Yugoslavia are recent manifestations of this fundamental trend, and there are separatist movements in more than two dozen countries at this time, including such well-known ones as in Aceh, Basque country, Catalonia, Scotland, Lapland, Sardinia, Sicily, Sudan, Congo, Kashmir, Chechnya, Kurdistan, Quebec, British Columbia, Mexico, and the Indian nations of North America.

There is no reason that we cannot begin to examine the processes of secession in the United States. There are already at least 28 separatist organizations in this country-the most active seem to be in Alaska, Cascadia, Texas, Hawaii, Vermont, Puerto Rico, and the South-and there seems to be a growing sentiment that, because the national government has shown itself to be clumsy, unresponsive, and unaccountable in so many ways, power should be concentrated at lower levels. Whether these levels should be the states or coherent regions within the states or something smaller still is a matter best left to the people active in devolution, but the principle of secession must be established as valid and legitimate.


  1. James,

    You may want to alter the list or take what they say with a grain of salt.

    First, while Quebec has a separatist movement, it is not nearly as popular as it once was and doesn seem to want full separation from Canada.

    British Columbia? You have got to be kidding. Alberta I might grant, but BC? Most separatist movements in Canada are simply an anttempt to extort extra money or privileges out of the Federal Government. They are like a dog chasing a car - lots of noise and barking, but they wouldn't know what to do if they ever got what they want.

    The inclusion of BC on that list for me calls into question the research abilities and knowlege of the people that made it, which calls into question whether they know what they are talking about. If you can't get accruate information about your nearest neighbour and biggest trading partner, then how can the rest of their writings be trusted to be based on facts?

    This just blows the credibility of the "think tank" - they can;t seem to think.

  2. The movements are small everwhere, so much that they are generally off the radar screen.

    I was surprised by BC's inclusion, but just because I don't know about it doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

  3. James,

    I'm not implying that one doesn;t exist. I'm sure their are fringe separatist in every province in Canada and State in the Union. But to preface the list with this:

    "and there are separatist movements in more than two dozen countries at this time, including such well-known ones as..." [emphasis mine]

    Is a bit over the top. Equating the FLQ or the BQ or the PQ or even ETA and the Aceh rebels with a few hundred disgruntled finge people is a bit off.

    I can tell you as soon as I read the list, I lost belief in everything else they were going to say.

    Love the blog BTW. We agree on quite a lot, surprisingly (though I guess I'm not quite as libertarian as you are)

  4. I've heard a few times in sermons or lectures that the Greek word for "nation" in the Great Commission or in "every tongue, tribe and nation" is actually a reference not to geo-political nation states, but to people groups. As an example, the geo-political nation of Pakistan is made up of 173 distinct people groups (I learned this from a missionary). (Not being a Greek expert, I'd advise checking this out yourself.)

    Could it be (and I am a postmillenialist like Gary North et al) that in the future, nation states will give way to smaller groups with localized self-government whose biblical idealism will be reached (or close to it anyway) before Christ's return? We may not live long enough for Christian liberty to attain to its fulfillment, but I can't help but wonder if secessionism will gain steam as the law and gospel spread.

    Statist churches will be a thing of the past and freedom will be the rule, not the exception.