I’ve been considering our current social and political condition and have arrived at the sad and reluctant conclusion that our Founding Fathers were all wrong about that “Declaration of Independence” thing.
Recent studies have shown that in terms of Median Household Income (the value separating the higher half of a sample from the lower half) the top 5 States are-
- New Hampshire
Hmm… that’s a pretty strong New England core, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Massachusetts, #1, #2, and #5. If you take a look at the map I linked you’ll see that some of our less fortunate neighbors are not so unfortunate either. New Jersey clocks in at #11, Rhode Island at #15, New York at #16, Pennsylvania at #18, and Vermont at #19.
That’s a fair swath of territory but if we open our minds a little and add States like Maryland (#4), D.C. (#7 and it should be a State), and Virginia (#14) we might find some charity for our below median step children Delaware (#26) and Maine (#44).
California (only #13 but the 6th largest economy in the world) eat your heart out, though you can have Washington (#10) and Oregon (#23) as consolation prizes. Frankly the rest should belong either to the Native Americans or Mexico, or for that matter anyone who will take it- I’m not particular.
I propose calling the North Eastern part Acela for obvious reasons and also because it’s so much more mellifluous than “BoWash Corridor”.
Now, here’s where I get radical.
Instead of declaring independence we get in touch with Queen Liz (who seems a good sport) and Britain and admit we were wrong and we’d like to be back in the Commonwealth please, and we contact Canada and get adopted as a new Province.
Think of the benefits! Universal Health Care! Good Beer! Curling instead of Golf! Not being hated and despised abroad!
There are drawbacks I admit. Canada is not as Left as you think. Tim Horton’s coffee is terrible and their breakfast wraps have this inedible mystery sauce even if you specifically order them without it (though they do use these light and fluffy scrambled eggs instead of the hard boiled hockey pucks we serve here). A&W hamburgers are cooked Well Done. All hamburgers are cooked Well Done, it’s the law, order steak instead. On the other hand they have A&Ws, frosty mugs included.
These topics should be debated at a new Hartford Convention. I expect Dunkin’ Donuts will throw its corporate might in opposition though they shouldn’t because if they just serve better eggs they’ll dominate (did I mention terrible coffee?).
Some may object I’m making the classical Left error of ignoring the heartland, flyover country. Well, my actual reaction is- “So what?” I must admit I feel a pang abandoning the land of my birth, Michigan, to the wolves (or wolverines), but there is hope.
At one time France laid claim to the entire Mississippi watershed and Michigan was explicitly French territory until the signature of the Treaty of Paris in 1763 so provided I could learn enough to pass the test I could apply for French citizenship (anyone born in a former territory can).
Oh, you think I’m crazy? Welcome to Catalonia. Yes, it’s a real place! It’s not just some made up name that rhymes with California.
Catalonia Independence Bid Pushes Spain Toward Crisis
By RAPHAEL MINDER, The New York Times
SEPT. 8, 2017
Separatism has deep historical and cultural roots in Catalonia, which has a distinct language. Monday’s Catalan national day commemorates a Catalan defeat at the hands of Madrid: the 1714 capture of Barcelona by the troops of Philip V, the first Bourbon monarch of Spain.
At one point, Spain’s national lawmakers came close to appeasing Catalan’s nationalist sentiment by allowing the region special autonomy. But when that statute was struck down by Spain’s constitutional court in 2010, the tensions came to the fore.
The dispute gathered steam during the financial crisis after Mr. Rajoy rejected a plea by Catalonia to reduce its contribution to a Spanish tax system that transfers money from wealthier to poorer areas.
The move only fueled the sense in Catalonia — Spain’s most economically powerful region — that Madrid was unfairly sucking away its wealth.
The separatists say Madrid is denying Catalans the democratic right to vote on their future. Madrid says the separatists are undermining democracy by flouting court rulings and violating the constitution.
In recent days, Mr. Rajoy’s government took legal action to ensure that Spain’s judiciary declares null and void the laws that separatist lawmakers have approved before the referendum.
On Thursday, Mr. Rajoy told Catalonia’s mayors, elected officials and civil servants that their duty was to “prevent or paralyze” an illegal referendum. As Spain’s leader, he added, “I will do everything necessary without giving up anything” to stop secessionism in its tracks.
In response, Carles Puigdemont, the leader of Catalonia, told Catalan television that no politician or court in Madrid could stop the referendum.
On Oct. 1, he predicted, Catalonia will be swept up in “a democratic tsunami,” as its streets fill with citizens casting their vote in favor of independence. Democracy, Mr. Puigdemont argued, is “to listen to citizens,” while Mr. Rajoy is doing “another thing” by threatening punishment, with the support of Spanish judges.
Mr. Puigdemont and his colleagues seem prepared to pursue their fight even if it results in their prosecution.
That is what happened in March to Artur Mas, Catalonia’s former leader, who was fined and barred from holding office for two years after a court found him guilty of organizing the last independence referendum.
Mr. Rajoy leads a minority government in Madrid and a conservative Popular Party mired by corruption scandals.
So far, Mr. Rajoy has resisted calls by more hard-line elements of his conservative electorate to use emergency powers granted under Spain’s Constitution to seize back administrative control of Catalonia.
But he has not ruled out such a step, particularly if Mr. Puigdemont’s government declares independence unilaterally.
Either move would be a significant escalation in the standoff.
At this stage, whether the referendum succeeds or not, Mr. Puigdemont and his fellow separatist politicians have raised expectations of a significant moment.
Win or lose, separatists could still take to the streets, warned Francesc de Carreras, a constitutional lawyer who helped launch Ciudadanos, a party firmly opposed to independence.
“We should at least be ready for a Catalan version of Maidan,” he said, referring to the square in Kiev that became the center of the Ukrainian revolution in 2014.
“It could create an even more unpredictable and tense situation,” he said. “But the right to protest must also be respected in a democracy.”
I’m rooting for the Catalans.
Greed, Militarism, War – this is fascism! Unite to destroy it!
Below the fold is a ranked table of the Median Household Income by State as of 2016. It took me a while to do because the alphabetical Post version was inadequate for my analysis.