Free California: is independence the answer?
by Robert Nanninga
That's it! I've had it. I am officially over the American Dream. No longer will I pretend the intent of the founding fathers is still alive in the government, known officially around the world as the United States of America. I know this is not the usual Earth Day happy talk about working together to heal the planet. We've moved beyond that. The rules have changed, and all bets are off.
The Bush Regime, having begun an imperialist war of preemption and the long occupation of a sovereign nation, has forever weakened the fabric that holds together the federation. This weakness is evidenced by an exponential increase in corporate corruption and an ever decreasing number of voters. Also signaling the unraveling of the American superpower: Hawaii, New England, Alaska, Vermont, and Texas all have active secessionist movements, as does the Cascadian bio-region (Oregon/Washington) and Dade-Miami County.
I would like to officially add California to that list.
As a confirmed bioregionalist, I have long advocated decentralized government. So my bringing this up should surprise no one. Current events, however, have prompted me to rethink the whole superpower thing. Oh, sure there are a few perks like unlimited consumption, free trade, overpopulation, deforestation, militarization, and taxes up the wahzoo. Other than that, I'm not sure being aligned with The United States of Mendacity is the best interests of Californians.
Breaking up is hard to do but it's time we did it.
Considering an overwhelming majority of Californians did not vote for George W. Bush in 2000, as the fifth largest economy in the world it is time we considered secession. As an environmentalist, I am of the opinion that it is time California joined the League of Nations. The foundation of this opinion is my belief that the federal government is now structured in such a way as to facilitate the global dominance and the plundering of the natural resources. California included. The energy scandals of 2001 are just the latest example of the Uncle Sam having his way with Californians.
California could easily sustain itself. A large area, encompassing diverse cultures some dating before the western there is enough biodiversity remaining to ensure continued well-being, albeit at a much slower pace. Here in Southern California we have enough sunshine to power this new nation, with an ample surplus to trade with our northern neighbors in Cascadia. Tourism, biotech, and entertainment are industries that would flourish away from federal restraint and manipulation.
In Northern California, the forests of the Siskiyou, Shasta, Mendocino, and Humboldt could be allowed to remain in place to generate the weather and water produced by arboreal rainforests. Rivers could be liberated and salmon runs restored, which in turn can be used as a basis for a thriving ecotourism industry. Central California would retain its prominent agricultural standing in the world, and once safely away from a greedy federal manipulations, state treasures such as Sierras and the Yosemite can be once again protected from industrial pillaging.
The strongest argument for California secession is environmental protections. California is grossly over populated due to failed federal policy designed to promote cheap labor and maximum profit. Population is California's Achilles heel, and water is the poisoned arrow that will bring us down if we do not take control of our destiny. Immigration must be curbed if quality of life is to be maintained. As an independent nation, we would be free to negotiate with other Pacific Rim nations. Which would mean Californians could protect coastal waters from international fishing fleets and nuclear proliferation.
Best of all, there will be no need for violence. As proven by the Bush Doctrine, nations can be bought. And once a precedent has been established, nothing should prevent California from buying our independence. After the war Uncle Bushie will be strapped for cash, so we should be prepared with a generous divorce settlement.
Robert Nanninga is a free-lance writer, producer and environmental journalist. A native of Vista living in Leucadia, he Chairs San Diego ZPG, as well as representing coastal North County on the Green County Council.