Friday, December 28, 2012

Better Red than Dead? - Federalism & Seperatism

Rather than a wave moving in one party's favor, crosscurrents have moved the states apart. One political scientist says, "This hardly ever happens, where the blue states get bluer and the red states redder, instead of the whole country going in one direction."
By John Sykes

We are going to see more and more on federalism and it's radical sister separatism. Include me with the many increasingly afraid that the conservative/liberal divide has reached the point that the our federal government is and will continue to be stuck on stupid, unable to agree on anything.

Put another way, can conservatives and liberals coexist and be functional? Or are we going to have to evolve into some red state - blue state arrangement with federal oversight?

Jonah Goldberg comments in Federalism Could be the Solution to GOP Branding Problem:
...Well, if the [statist] game is rigged against you, continuing to play the game is the very definition of idiocy. You have to change the rules.
My own view is that conservatives should recommit themselves to federalism and states' rights. The Party of Lincoln should protect core civil rights, but beyond that, states and localities should be given as much freedom as they can handle. If California wants to become Sweden with better weather, let it. If Texas wants to become Singapore on the Rio Grande, great, go for it. And the same principle goes for cities and towns within those states.
Of course, conservatives already say they believe in federalism, but they rarely demonstrate it save when convenient. Which brings me back to the question of fidelity to principle. In principle, Republicans should look at the monumental clutter in Washington like a boat with too much ballast to stay afloat: When in doubt, throw it overboard.
In practice, Republicans should be more strategic and discriminating. That means taking positions that are right on policy, but also, when possible, highlighting issues that run counter to the (unfair) caricature of Republicans as prudish moneybags. Personally, I'd start with federal marijuana laws. The tide has turned on pot, and states are going to keep legalizing it. Why should Washington stand in their way? The beauty of federalism is that you don't have to condone legalization in one state or prohibition in another. It's just not Washington's fight.
This can't happen overnight, but the system didn't get rigged overnight either.
Think about it. Would you rather live and function in California or Texas

Would you want a Constitutional Federal government or Big Brother Statism?

 Do you want to labor where makers outweigh takers?

Sure seems a strange twist that it is once again better to be red than dead - or blue!