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Secession and Catalonia: What Is a Nation?
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In recent months, especially with the accession to the presidency of Donald Trump, there has been renewed talk, serious talk, ironic talk, about secession—particularly, from zealously Leftist anti-Trump militants in California and along the Pacific Rim areas of the United States. Advocates of what is called “Cal-exit” make their case that California, specifically, is not like other states and regions of the United States. Its population is increasingly non-Anglo and Hispanic—its politics, at least along the littoral areas, is dominated largely by far left-wingers—and its culture is more influenced by Silicon Valley, Hollywood, Mexico and various leftist totems. It voted by a heavy majority for Hillary.

Yet, far inland areas, mountainous regions of the state, populated by descendants of the rugged gold seekers, the Forty-Niners of 1848-1849, remain conservative. So, the question of secession of California from the Federal union might also need to be addressed on an intra-state level as well: should some strongly conservative districts be permitted to secede from California, itself, if the state should leave the union? What unity would they have with a new “Democratic Socialist Republic of California”?

It becomes complicated. If the question of secession—and not just secession of, as in the case of California, but of any entity—really be examined, then wide variations in culture, history, ethnicity, economics and politics should be considered, taken into consideration.

While secession can be a viable and satisfactory solution to insoluble national problems, it is not always in every case advisable. There may be good reasons for a region, or a state, or a province to depart from a larger entity. I would argue strongly that the painful decision by the Southern states of the United States to secede from the American union in 1860-1861 was largely justified on historical, cultural and economic reasons, not to mention the politics involved.

Actually, the departures of those eleven states (or, actually, thirteen if you count the illegally thwarted departures of Kentucky and Missouri) came in two waves: the first began with South Carolina and continued with the exit of several Deep South states. Lincoln’s call in April 1861 for troops to suppress South Carolina shocked the constitutional sensibilities of additional states in the Upper South, several of which had resisted the initial impulse to join the secession. And by early summer the Confederate States of America was a functioning nation, albeit a country facing invasion from its powerful former co-citizens.

But, I can think of instances when secession—that is, the break-up of larger nations or empires—is not only inadvisable, but positively injurious not only to the whole, but also to the respective seceding parts. The dissolution of the old Austria-Hungarian Empire in 1918, for instance, was not only a tragic mistake geopolitically, but made little sense economically, ethnically or historically. What was produced by the Treaties of Saint-Germain and Trianon was a succession of angrily dissatisfied, uber-nationalist states and displaced ethnic minorities imprisoned in new, arbitrary and irrational geographical expressions, waiting for the next powder keg to explode.

Interestingly, it was the heir to the wizened old Kaiser, Franz Josef, the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, who advocated additional decentralization of the old empire, with a third, Slavic kingdom, to join Austria and Hungary in a tripartite monarchy. That he and his wife, Sophie, were cruelly assassinated in Sarajevo in July 1914 by a Serbian nationalist, not only put into motion the coming of the First World War, but stymied what might have been a revitalized, regionalist future for the creaky old Habsburg Empire.

The castration of the ancient Russian homeland more recently is another case of good (American) intentions gone awry: the creation of new artificial states such as Byelorussia and Kazakhstan was not only historically and politically wrongheaded, but economically ill-advised. President Vladimir Putin’s statement—rightly understood—that the break-up of the Soviet Union was one of the greatest disasters of the 20th century was intended in this sense (and not, as some Russophobic Necons attempt to construe it, as a lament for Communism!).

Talking to a friend recently, I expressed some serious skepticism about the recent plebiscite in Catalonia on the question of secession from Spain. My friend, knowing of my longstanding defense of secession historically when it concerns the South, was surprised. I attempted in a very brief discussion to explain why I demurred in the Catalan case, but the conversation was cut short.

What I would suggest is that the simple slogan that secession is always good policy is not really defensible, historically, culturally, economically, ethnically, or politically.

In the case of Catalonia, my arguments against secession are multiple, and range from the very practical and statistical, to the historical and cultural.

Let’s start with the historical and cultural. Basically, the medieval County of Barcelona was united under the crown of Aragon in the mid-12th century. The de facto dynastic union of Aragon and Catalonia (ruled by the Counts of Barcelona) became a de jure one, a legal one, in 1258. Thus, for eight centuries the region has been united with Spain. While the Catalan language, which while distinct from Spanish, is also similar to it, remained the lingua franca of rural areas, Castilian Spanish began to be spoken in more urban areas. But like the other kingdoms and principalities that came together to create Spain, Catalonia retained many of its customs, and regional and historic rights, within the new Spanish monarchy.

Historically, Spain was a composite, a dynastic federation and union of the ancient kingdoms of Castile and Leon, Aragon, Valencia, and then, the Kingdom of Navarra and the Basque territories in the north of the country, plus the formerly Muslim Kingdom of Granada in the South. Indeed, even at the time of the great monarch, Philip II—supposedly, according to Anglophile and Protestant propagandists of the 16th century, that all-powerful authoritarian monarch of the early modern era—Spain was known as “las Espanas,” that is, “the Spains,” to indicate that King Philip was not actually the absolute king of a unitary, centralized royal state, but rather the monarch over a collection of fiercely regionalist states, each with its own traditions, history and parliaments (or “cortes”), but all together composing a country. Philip was dependent on them for financing his government. Each of those regions, those ancient components, of Spain had legal codes (“recopilaciones de leyes”) which guided jurisprudence; those historic and regional rights were called “fueros,” which we would render in English to mean “states’ rights.” Eventually portions of those statutes and legislated customs were cobbled together in a common law for the entire country. Nevertheless, the historic regions jealously guarded their respective traditions, languages, customs and fueros, and continued to do so throughout the remainder of Habsburg Spain into the early 19th century.

Not only because of the dynastic question, but precisely over those fueros much of Spain underwent a series of bloody civil wars in the 19th century. And what many foreigners find ironic and incomprehensible is that it was the so-called royalist “absolutistas,” the defenders of the ancient regime and the old monarchy, the traditionalists who took the name “Carlists” after the dispossessed rightful heir to the throne, Don Carlos V (“de jure” king of “las Espanas”) in 1833, who actually defended the historic regionalism and subsidiarity of the old regime. For them it was a powerful king who ruled from Madrid, but who was also limited in his powers by the historic, unbridgeable rights of the “kingdoms” that made up the country, which guaranteed more essential and more local liberties to the citizens. Like the martyred King Charles I of England, who declared at his illegal trial that he was more the defender of the “rights of the good people of England” than the rump parliamentarians, the traditional monarchs in Spain, with the legacy of the patchwork of historic states and their sacralized customs and legal “recopilaciones,”offered far more self-government, far more “liberties” than any centralizing liberal state could or ever would.

During those several civil wars in the 19th century, Catalonia stood, by and large, with the traditionalist defenders of the ancient regime, the Carlists. It was the Carlists who defended the fueros and who advocated the return of a strong king who actually had power, but whose powers were also circumscribed by the historic regions and traditions of the country. It was the Carlists—and some of their most perceptive political philosophers (e.g., Jaime Balmes, Francisco Navarro Villoslada, Juan Vazquez de Mella)—who understood that 19th century liberalism, despite it slogan of “liberty and equality,” would actually do away with and suppress those old regionalist statutes and protections, those intermediate institutions in society, that secured more liberties for the citizens.

Only 40% of the eligible voters in Catalonia participated in the recent plebiscite on possible independence; of those around 90% voted “Si.” But that means that approximately just 30% of the electorate truly favors independence. And those political groups that most zealously support such a move are on the Left politically. They see the region, which is the most economically successful area of Spain and the most “Europeanized,” as able to get a better deal economically within the European Union. They welcome globalism and a unitary European government with themselves also at the helm sharing power.

Of course, it is always good to hit the bloated central government in Madrid in the eye, but at what price?

The present-day proponents of independence do not represent the ancient and best traditions and historic legacy of Catalonia. Their advocacy of Catalan independence is not a comfortable fit with the long history of that region. The nationalism they advance owes far more to the liberal statism of the 19th century than to the Catalan heritage of local and regional self-rule. Catalonia is not a nation-waiting-to-be-born; its association as one of the integral and historic, largely autonomous regions within Spain is its tradition. Catalonia can best find its destiny in reasserting its role as a largely self-governing region—but within the historic federation of the Spanish kingdom.

• Category: History, Ideology • Tags: Catalonia, Secession, Spain 
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  1. Good time to address the issue of secession. Krugman was just talking about this at the NYT and like most liberals he assumes that secession is a threat that the coastal states can wield over the benighted interior states. But is this truly a real threat?

    I don’t think so. First, when the South seceded, the North dragged them back. Today, if every county that voted Trump were to break away from Hillary voters they would take with them the most productive farming, manufacturing, mining, electricity generating sectors of the economy. The coastal Hillary voters are the banking, information sectors of the economy. Now which of the two is independent? Which is dependent?

    Right. That’s why secession by the heartland would no more be tolerated today than secession was in 1860. The coastal “Elite” are entirely dependent on the heartland for their basic commodities and yet they have no loyalty to the people who dwell there and further, want to displace them with outsiders and can’t wait for them to die (even gunning them down in public spaces).

    Secession? Hail yeah!

  2. @ThreeCranes

    You make some good points here.

    The coastal “Elite” are entirely dependent on the heartland for their basic commodities and yet they have no loyalty to the people who dwell there and further, want to displace them with outsiders and can’t wait for them to die (even gunning them down in public spaces).

    True. Most of them also have no significant real life skills which matter, bar some hipsters obsessed with organic food–many of them are trying, actually, to grow it and that is a plus. But yes, most people you describe here never spent a day on manufacturing floor, or in the uniform, or anywhere which requires serious labor and uncomfortable existence.

    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
  3. @Andrei Martyanov

    But more, Andrei. All the hydroelectric dams are locate inland, the mineral deposits, the fertile soil and so on. The coastal are to the people of the heartland as an absentee landlord is to his tenant farmers.

    Before 1965, virtually every business located in the downtown of cities of under say, 250,000 citizens was locally owned (some exceptions, Sears, Penny’s, Montgomery Ward). Now, every business is a franchise whose central office is in New York City et al. The coastal elite, having financialized everything in the American economy worth financializing, now own, via money loaned into existence by the Central Bank, America’s small town economies. That this doesn’t have to be so is proved by the fact that it wasn’t always so.

    America was a better place to live before the local economies were destroyed and displaced by the global one. We are currently suffering from a plague like the ones imported from the East during the dark days of the Black Death and for the same reason. We are being exposed to the toxic effects of moving people and goods around the world with no regard for the effect this has on local ecologies–cultural or natural. That this is literally killing us is a matter of indifference to our coastal elites.

  4. dearieme says:

    “another case of good (American) intentions gone awry”: you are more sanguine about American motives than I am.

  5. @ThreeCranes

    The coastal elite, having financialized everything in the American economy worth financializing

    Agree. But then again, we live in the world where Facebook “capitalization” is several times larger than that of Boeing, which provides half of the world with needed actual high-tech products. B-787 is a marvel. We have Tesla which is one of the most outstanding (together with Musk’s “Mars mission”) frauds in history. A madhouse. But while agreeing with you in principle, I also have to make some clarifications, I also observed how many, namely from logging industry on the West Coast didn’t want to take new opportunities, granted paying less than their logging professions, to turn their life around. The opportunities were there, they just refused. Opportunities were in aerospace, in excellent Air Washington Program (I took advantage of it to get some CNC courses for general horizons expansion) , granted that it required math and more brain-work than usually is required from logging. But no, they just wanted it the way they wanted it. Knowing how logging worked on the West Coast I kinda see why they wanted it back but it will never be back the way it was. Next step for them once it doesn’t come back? Well, we have here a massive growth of pot dispensaries, that will take care of the labor force (bitter sarcasm).

    • Replies: @Alden
  6. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The interior has very little population though and would have trouble holding territory. The interior’s farmland could be sabotaged and destroyed and its access to major waterways and water traffic would be cut off. The coasts have extensive global trade networks and would effectively lay siege on the interior.

  7. Miro23 says:

    Catalonia can best find its destiny in reasserting its role as a largely self-governing region—but within the historic federation of the Spanish kingdom.

    One of the best articles ever on Unz, with a great presentation of the historical roots of modern Spain. Maybe it underplays the role of 20th Century leftist internationalism (i.e. Bolshevism light or otherwise) but still , it would correctly see radical international leftism as a new arrival on the scene, mostly burning itself out with the exit of Spanish feudalism .

    But, I can think of instances when secession—that is, the break-up of larger nations or empires—is not only inadvisable, but positively injurious not only to the whole, but also to the respective seceding parts. The dissolution of the old Austria-Hungarian Empire in 1918, for instance, was not only a tragic mistake geopolitically, but made little sense economically, ethnically or historically.

    I’m not so sure about this.

    Austria-Hungary, prior to its collapse, wasn’t a respectful alliance of largely self-governing regions. There were a lot of other things going on – most notably hopeless race wars focused on Vienna.

    Just as an example:

    “In the old Austria, nothing could be done without patronage. That’s partly explained by the fact that nine million Germans were in fact rulers, in virtue of an unwritten law, of fifty million non-Germans. This German ruling class took strict care that places should always be found for Germans. For them this was the only method of maintaining themselves in this privileged situation. The Balts of German origin behaved in the same way towards the Slav population.”

    “Hitler’s Table Talk”. Conversation Nº 109 15th-16th January 1942


    “The rise of the Jews in Austria-Hungary may well have been the most sudden , impressive rise of Jews in modern history.”

    “….all public life was dominated by Jews. The banks, the press, the theater, literature, social organizations, all lay in the hands of the Jews…. The aristocracy would have nothing to do with such things…. The small number of untitled patrician families imitated the aristocracy; the original upper-middle class had disappeared….. The court, the lower middle class and the Jews gave the city its stamp. And that the Jews, as the most mobile group, kept all the others in continual motion is, on the whole, not surprising.”

    Albert Lindeman, “Esau’s Tears: Modern Anti-Semitism and the Rise of the Jews”

  8. @Anonymous

    The coasts have extensive global trade networks and would effectively lay siege on the interior.

    Actually, it is the other way around. What coasts? If in the East it could be viewed as a somewhat continuous urban chain in the North-East, the West Coast “elites” reside mostly in Seattle, Portland, SF urban areas, which, while large, are in effect the places of compact residence. As such, they are fairly easily isolated, not to mention the fact of undeniable emasculation of their male residents. They can not find often their own ass with their two hands in a brightly lit room, let alone “lay siege” to anything. This is not to speak of the fact that all, without exception, urban centers depend entirely on “interior” for food. As per interior main cities–as latest elections showed, Ohio or Indiana, which are interior and do contain serious urban centers are not “elitists” states. Neither is Texas, which is also a major urban and port state. In other words, it is a very complex picture.

  9. Although I agree that this historical overview of Catalonia since the 1200’s is quite good, I still have a few quibbles and one big caveat. First quibble: Catalonia was joined to the kingship of Aragon, but was functionally separate from the State of Aragon and generally left alone by the various kings over the next several centuries. Second quibble: Catalonia rebelled quite regularly since the 1400’s when its neighbours sought to encroach on traditional Catalan rights and prerogatives. It has never been long an easy member of what became the Spanish nation following the reconquest.

    My caveat is the part of the history that has been left out. Catalonia existed as a distinct entity or one allied with its (now) French neighbour. Catalonia has had strong ties with its Mediterranean neighbours and with France during its long historical period of development following the fall of Rome in the West. During the existence of El Andelus under caliphate rule and later after various statelets splintered off of the caliphate, Catalonia often allied with the muslim states as well as having strong ties northward. Many of its feudal rulers were descendents of Visigoths who descended out of the decaying Roman Empire and set up rule in many parts of Iberia. This long formative period of Catalan history can still be felt in many Catalan customs and in the Catalan language.

    So, is it surprising that a large portion of the people of Catalonia might have a strong independent spirit and outlook. However, I agree that independence in today’s context needs more than a vibrant history, language and customs. It needs a strong and functioning administration, government and military to defend itself and its borders. It needs to preserve and protect and grow its economy. It also needs international recognition.

    • Replies: @AKAHorace
    , @elculer
  10. hyperbola says:

    That Mythical Pro-Spanish Majority in Catalonia

    The media constantly pumps out the lie that there is a silent anti-independence majority in Catalonia, which is merely curiously invisible.

    Consider this. The highest turnout ever at an election in Catalonia was the 74.9% in the 2015 Regional Election, with 4,130.196 people casting their vote. At Spanish general elections turnout is even lower, at 69%. A minimum of 25.1% of the population never vote at all. Of that 25% who do not vote, some will be dead, or moved away, but most are probably just not civilly engaged.

    The trick of the pro-Spanish lobby is to boycott polls on Independence, and then claim that this minimum 25% of the electorate who never vote at all anyway, are anti-Independence and participating in the boycott. In truth there are absolutely no grounds to attribute the minimum 25% habitual non-voters as anti-independence. Particularly the dead ones.

    So in fact the 2,044,038 votes cast in favour of Independence on Sunday, that survived the police and could be counted, already amounted to 49.6% of the highest number of votes ever cast in any election in Catalonia. When you add in the hundreds of thousands of votes confiscated by the police, and the voters who were deterred by the terrible violence, there is no doubt whatsoever that Sunday’s referendum would have seen a healthy majority for Independence on any probable turnout figure…..

    • Replies: @Matra
    , @animalogic
  11. hyperbola says:

    Most participants here will know virtually nothing about Spain, Catalonia, or even successful confederal models in Europe. Long, complicated topics, so I will make only a few short comments here.

    1. The present spanish monarchy essentially involved a murderous dictator designating a king. A poisonous contradiction (restoring a monarchy) was mostly accepted to escape from the murderous dictatorship. There are “republicans” who would like to end the monarchy throughout Spain, including Catalonia. The issue of constitutional reform is now on the table and the Spanish would be wise to get rid of such an anachronism. The country has suffered every time that it has had foreigners as kings, starting with the “germans” Carlos I and Carlos II who bled Spaniards for numerous wars in Europe. The present royal family is of French (the Borbons) and German (Schleswig-Holstein Sonderburg-Glücksburg) ancestry. The grandmother of the present king (Felipe VI) can be seen (together with her brothers) dressed in the uniform of the Hitler Youth in numerous web sites.

    2. Cataluña is not the only area of Spain that “rebels” against right-wing, centralized control. Similar sentiments are present (to more or less degree) in Pais Vasco, Galicia, Valencia, Baleares, Canarias, …. Spain has a centuries long history of failing to deal with the pluri-national nature of the country and seems to be failing once again.

    3. There are models of pluri-national confederations/nations that are exemplary instances of how to deal with such problems. Switzerland is perhaps the best known. The “Eidgenossenschaft” (confederation) of the german-speaking areas dates from about 1250 and initially involved seven independent countries, each of which retained its own sovereignity. The model was soon after copied in the french- and italian-speaking areas of modern Switzerland. The present confederation includes 27 kantons (the federal constitution guarantees that they remain sovereign nations, i.e. in principle can withdraw) and 4 different languages. The Kantons retain power over taxes, education, welfare, citizenship, ….. Direct democracy reigns at both the national and kantonal level, i.e. citizens can reject/initiate laws by referendum, including kantonal/national taxation/expenditure.

    4. Spain actually has a mixed system in which certain “autonomia” (states – Pais Vasco, Navarra, Aragon) have a status somewhat like Kantons in Switzerland, e.g. a separate status with regard to taxation.

    Probably the best thing that Spain could do would be to copy the Swiss model and get rid of the monarchy. Probably even Cataluña could be convinced to join such a model.

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
    , @Respect
  12. AP says:

    Only 40% of the eligible voters in Catalonia participated in the recent plebiscite on possible independence; of those around 90% voted “Si.” But that means that approximately just 30% of the electorate truly favors independence.

    1. The 40% is because the Madrid government interfered with the vote.

    2. In the 2016 American election, turnout was 54.7% of whom 46.1% voted from Trump. That’s 25.2% of the electorate favoring Trump. In the 2012 election, turnout was 54.9%, 51.1% of whom voted for Obama. That’s 28% of the electorate favoring Obama. A higher percentage of Catalonia’s electorate favor independence than American electorate favored the last two US presidents.

    • Agree: RadicalCenter
    • Replies: @hyperbola
    , @RadicalCenter
  13. hyperbola says:

    Macron in France is even less favored by the electorate. But the mainstream media will never mention that.

    The Single Party French State … as the Majority of Voters Abstain

    ….. Macron’s victory was both overwhelming and underwhelming. All records of abstention were broken; for the first time in over a century, a majority of eligible voters stayed away from the polls in the first round of the parliamentary elections, and abstention rose to 57% in the second round. He owes his landslide to less than 20% of registered voters…..

  14. @ThreeCranes

    A cogent analysis by all Three Cranes (Martin, Niles, and Fraser? 😉

    Seriously, I would offer a partial counter-argument, but only a partial one. The rest of the country buys enormous quantities of fruits, vegetables, and nuts (the jokes write themselves) from California, right? I assume CA would be glad to keep selling to the rest of the USA, but with the farther-left, more anti-white government that would come to power in an independent CA, who knows. They might elect to sell only to other countries, and China and India can buy up anything CA can produce in that regard.

    On the other hand, as California grows ever more over-populated, it further exceeds the carrying capacity of this territory. Among other baleful effects, we see that California droughts become more common, more prolonged, and more severe.

    There are increasing battles over agricultural producers’ access to the scarce water supplies of this State. Dire results seem almost inevitable as the population is allowed to keep growing without an end in sight.

    In fact, the loons who run Cali now — and the even loonier loons who will run an independent Cali — will make it a badge of honor to show how many Mexicans they can admit to settle on their land, and how fast. That will intensify the drought and hasten the day when Cali can no longer maintain anything like its current ag output. God help them, and us, when that day comes.

    • Replies: @Wally
  15. @Andrei Martyanov

    This is going to be a bitter pill for Steve Sailer to swallow, but his beloved California is not the preeminent region in America’s economy.

    “According to the Brookings Institution, if it stood alone as a country, the Great Lakes economy would be one of the largest economic units on earth (with a $4.5-trillion gross regional product). It contains most of an area urban planners have viewed as an emerging Great Lakes Megalopolis which has an estimated 54 million people.”

    “If the state were considered separately, it would rank as the sixth largest economy in the world, behind rest of the United States, China, Japan, Germany and the United Kingdom. The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that California’s GDP was $2.5 trillion in 2015, up 4.1 percent from a year earlier.”

    Let California go. We don’t need them with their mealy, inedible vegetables.

  16. @Anonymous

    You make a great point about the prospect of economic blockade, in effect, by coastal independent Cali against the inland portion of the State that presumably remains with the USA.

    First of all, the inland and more rural-to-suburban counties must demand to leave Cali before Cali secedes. They could comprise the new U.S. States of, say, East California and North California.

    Second, the non-seceding States — and by extension the USA — MUST keep territory leading to the coast, and significant frontage on the Pacific Ocean in northern, central, and southern California, for reasons economic and military above all.

    If merely the LA and SF metroplexes, broadly construed, secede, leaving the majority of the State’s counties to stay in the USA, that might not be so bad for the rest of the USA.

    Here is the website of a California political party advocating eventual negotiated independence:

    They are waaaaaay too far left for me, but then, (1) that’s why they want to leave the USA, and (2) that’s why my wife and I would almost certainly have to pick up stakes and leave LA if Cali seceded, because something like the Cali National Party platform would surely garner a BIG supermajority of support in many of Cali’s coastal counties.

    P.S. But would the rest of the USA have the balls to prohibit all immigration from the new Third World coastal “Republic” of California? That would need to happen for it to benefit (and not continue gradually balkanizing and destroying) the rest of the USA longer-term.

    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  17. @Andrei Martyanov

    Texas may not be nearly as much a home to America-hating elites as LA, SF, NY, and DC, to be sure, but politically it will become part of that coalition seeking to replace and subjugate European-Americans nationwide. As you know, Texas is going Mexican, and its politics are about to change drastically.

    In its current size and form, much of Texas even ten years from now cannot be counted as a reliable ally or as a place for Americans to seek refuge from violence, discrimination, etc.

    Perhaps Texas, too, is in need of a peaceful, negotiated break-up into smaller, more manageable, more culturally / socially cohesive States. This needn’t entail secession, just new U.S. States whose people are allowed the broad autonomy guaranteed them by the Tenth Amendment. (yeah, I know, cue the laugh track)

    I often think that simply adhering to our Constitution would greatly dampen the ardor and perceived need for secession. The Constitution called for very limited powers for the federal government, and conversely very broad autonomy for the people of each State to decide almost everything except national monetary and foreign policy. Why would California “need’ to secede if they were allowed to have whatever laws they want on abortion, homosexual marriage, universal government-funded or government-provided healthcare, etc.? Why would Texas need to secede if they were allowed to have quite the opposite laws, without interference or threat from the fed gov (including the un-elected legislators known as the federal judiciary).

    • Replies: @Miro23
  18. @Andrei Martyanov

    P.S. There are entire counties in south Texas where the population is almost 100% Mexican. Not just right on the border, either.

    This phenomenon of immi-vasion keeps spreading northward while we Americans focus on the REALLY important issues like preventing Russians in Crimea from reuniting with Russia & demanding more “rights” for mentally ill people (“transgenders”).

  19. @hyperbola

    I need to learn more about the structure of the government in Spain, and its recent history. Your comment was VERY helpful, thank you 🙂

  20. @AP

    And imagine if the US had a two-round system for our presidential elections, i.e., top two vote-getters from the first round advancing to a run-off.

    We could have seen MILLIONS more people voting Green or Libertarian instead of Trump or Clinton. That system would tell us the real popularity of these “major-party” candidates, which is pitifully low when people feel that they have a realistic alternative and a way to express it through their vote.

    Trump and Clinton probably wouldn’t get even 30% of the votes each in such a first round. Even farther below the support that Catalonian voters just showed for independence.

    Go Catalonia!
    Go Scotland!

    And while we’re at it, “don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out, LA and San Francisco, Portland and Seattle.”

  21. Matra says:

    I don’t consider Spain v Catalonia any of my business so I’m neutral but Murray seems to be an ideologue more interested in narrative than truth. He even claims today’s Spaniards had Muslim ancestors, a typical leftist talking point. He’s not very credible.

  22. Miro23 says:

    The Constitution called for very limited powers for the federal government, and conversely very broad autonomy for the people of each State to decide almost everything except national monetary and foreign policy.

    Very broad autonomy to decide means that they would have to use this autonomy – which is a shockingly different mindset from what exists at present. Each citizen would have to be personally involved in evaluating issues, attending meetings and voting – and the only way I could see this happening is if Civic Democratic participation was compulsory.

    “Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.” -George Bernard Shaw

    My assumption is that most citizens would be too busy or too lazy and disinterested to participate, so it would have to be mandatory, with a penalty of loss of voting rights or even loss of citizenship. The idea is that you are only a citizen as long as you act as a citizen, and it would almost certainly need to combine with a period of compulsory military service for all male citizens to concretize the idea.

    … the people of each State to decide almost everything except national monetary and foreign policy.

    Monetary and foreign policy would have to come back to the states as well. Foreign policy needs to be firmly rooted in full participative state decision making, and FED/Treasury national level credit creation completely halted (we know where that money goes).

    • Replies: @Miro23
  23. With respect to Northern California, the author misses the obvious precedent of West Virginia, which in 1861 was carved out of the western parts of a recently seceded Virginia.

    • Replies: @Alden
  24. @RadicalCenter

    Then there’s the issue of what to do with the launch facilities of Vandenberg AFB. Will this relationship be like Russia leasing Baikonur from Khazakhstan? Do we have any reason to fear a nuclear armed Southern California with Ballistic Missile Technology? Should Mr. Trump start a pre-emptive bombing campaign now?

  25. Miro23 says:

    The idea is that you are only a citizen as long as you act as a citizen, and it would almost certainly need to combine with a period of compulsory military service for all male citizens to concretize the idea.

    Also, out-of-state military service would help Americans to get to know each other (Californians to Ohio, Texans to California, Alabamians to Washington State, New Yorkers to Montana or Hawaiians to Alaska).

  26. szopen says:

    The dissolution of the old Austria-Hungarian Empire in 1918, for instance, was not only a tragic mistake geopolitically, but made little sense economically, ethnically or historically.

    Of course the dissolution of A-H was necessary and it’s further existance would be absurd – it woudl also destablize the Europe, because of constant frictions within it. Historically, Poland, Czechia etc were historic nations, who were unwilling to be ruled by Austrians (even though in 1914 Austrians were the best from the three partitioners). I don’t know why double standards with respect to southern states and my own country. Don’t Poles deserve the same right to live in their own country as southerners?

  27. Interesting point of view, though I beg to differ on a point or two.

    It would seem that your presentation of Catalan claims to independence lacks a few key observations. The union of Spanish crowns actually dates from the late 15th century with the marriage of Queen Isabel of Castile to King Ferdinand of Aragon. While they each continued to rule over their own kingdom, they did coordinate some key policies. Their daughter Juana “la Loca” was the first to rule over the two kingdoms together. “Spain” became a Habsburg land when Juana’s son Charles I succeeded in 1517. Spain continued to be ruled by Habsburgs until 1700, when Charles II died without leaving an heir. The heir apparent was Louis XIV’s grandson Philip, a Bourbon. However, the Netherlands and England did not want him to succeed and therefore they recognized Charles VI, son of the German Emperor, as King of Spain. In the ensuing War of the Spanish Succession (1700-1713/4), the Dutch and English conquered Gibraltar and occupied Catalonia. In the end they had to accept that while Catalonia supported Charles VI, most of the rest of Spain preferred Philip. Once firmly on the throne, the new monarch did not exactly favor Catalonia, to put it mildly. However the seeds for Catalan separatism had now been planted in fertile soil.

    As for the point of what constitutes a nation, the answer is simple: anything at all, whether geographic location, language (which really is a “dialect with an army”), wealth, economic specialization, religion (Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks all speak the same language, but Serbs are Orthodox, Croats Roman Catholic and Bosniaks Mohammedan), etc.

    Basically, the key elements for constituing a nation are money, time, perseverance, violence and propaganda.

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @Miro23
  28. pyrrhus says:

    The tyrannical actions of Madrid against a referendum that probably would have failed otherwise, fully justify secession (at least as a threat) at this point. Another point, misunderstood by the author, is that the Catalan language is the primary language spoken in Barcelona and the region around it, and is the official language of the universities and Government. The Basques, who are the most creative group in Spain, also are chafing under Madrid’s rule….

  29. Anonymous [AKA "Jo King"] says:

    «1258. Thus, for eight centuries the region has been united with Spain».
    This is completly false, Spain simply HAS NOT 8 centuries of existence, learn History first, wright after. americans and History, what a difficult relation.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
    , @Alden
  30. @Miro23

    Yes, an excellent article from Prof Cathey.
    And you are right, Miro23, about the role of C 2oth “leftist internationalism” which continues to envelope Barcelona. People living very bourgeois lifestyles would come up to you and spout often very extreme left wing opinions, which you knew they had no intention of following in real life.
    My brother, a Post Grad in Spanish History, had to teach in Barcelona for a year as part of his course. I visited him several times. He came to despise Barcelona and its phony Toytown anarchists and other leftists. Neither he nor I have ever felt the desire to return.
    Without these Toytown leftists, I doubt there would have been a Referendum at all. Puigdemont needed their support and this was his bribe.

    • Replies: @Miro23
  31. @hyperbola

    You are spot on hyperbola. The author here tries to “stick his thumb on the scale”
    Only 40% of the eligible voters in Catalonia participated in the recent plebiscite on possible independence; of those around 90% voted “Si.”[my emphasis]
    His conclusion ? The plebiscite/referendum lacks popular validity.
    Absent, of course, is Madrid’s direct sabotage of the vote: ballots “stolen”, & voters obstructed from voting (sometimes violently, also psychologically).
    Nor, if memory serves, is the 40% that much less than the voter turn- out for some other countries, such as the US.

  32. Alfred says:

    The story that the WWI is the direct result of the assassination of the Austrian Archduke is an example of Fake News at its best.

    In reality, the English planned to take down Germany long before WWI. The Entente Cordiale with France had secret clauses that neither the British parliament nor most of the Cabinet knew anything about.

    Winston Churchill switched from Conservatives to Liberals in order to get the Liberals to start the war. As First Lord of the Admirality, he agreed with the French that their fleet should stay in the Mediterranean and the Royal Navy would defend their Atlantic coast.

    The British public were in favour of the Prussians and against the Russians and French. All of that was changed in a concerted propaganda campaign that went on for more than 10 years.

    Belgium was not a neutral country – the main pretext for getting the UK into the war – as it planned with the British the details of how a large British expeditionary force should deploy into Belgium to fight the Germans – long before 1914.

    Lastly, Germany was the last country to mobilise. So much for “German Aggression”.

    • Replies: @Old Palo Altan
  33. Excellent summary of the issue!

    I spent much of September in Spain, often trying to reconcile my conviction that Catalan separatists were wrongheaded provincials heading down a dangerous path with my past sympathies for some secessionist movements elsewhere. This article, with its compact history review, was helpful in describing some of the nuances differentiating diverse separatist movements. It shows that different conclusions about which ones are justified need not reflect a double standard.

  34. @Matra

    “I’m neutral but Murray seems to be an ideologue…. He even claims today’s Spaniards had Muslim ancestors, a typical leftist talking point.”
    Maybe he is an ideologue, but you certainly are.
    Although I guess the practice of history is itself typically leftist.
    Imagine claiming that modern Spaniards may have Muslim ancestors when Muslim’s controlled much of Spain (in ever decreasing area) from 711AD to 1492. I wonder whether a few drops or more of Muslim/Arabic blood my snuck into all that European blood over the course of 100’s of years ?

    • Replies: @Alden
  35. szopen says:
    @Hans Vogel

    Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks all speak the same language

    It’s more complicated than that. There are several dialects in ex-Yugoslavia, crossing through the ethnic lines. The are three dialects in Croatia, and I was told that one (official language) is almost same as Serbian, while two others are as different as almost a different language. If some Croat is here, he could confirm.

  36. Miro23 says:
    @Hans Vogel

    As for the point of what constitutes a nation, the answer is simple: anything at all, whether geographic location, language (which really is a “dialect with an army”), wealth, economic specialization, religion (Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks all speak the same language, but Serbs are Orthodox, Croats Roman Catholic and Bosniaks Mohammedan), etc.

    Basically, the key elements for constituting a nation are money, time, perseverance, violence and propaganda.

    You’ve forgotten (?) race.

    The Japanese identify themselves as a racially Japanese nation.

    The Jews identify themselves as a racially Jewish nation (with or without a country).

    And it’s not unusual to find the British race in Great Britain, Russians in Russia, Chinese in China and Africans in Africa.

  37. Kirt says:

    I tend to support popular secessionist movements reflexively, since the ability to opt out is the only thing that gives real meaning to consent of the governed. But if Spain is determined to drown this attempt in a Lincolnesque bloodbath, the Catalans better ask themselves if it is really worth it. Some of us onlookers will wish them well, most won’t care, but no one will ride to their rescue.

  38. Jake says:

    The brief synopsis of Spanish history is helpful, and Catalonia is the issue. But the article opens with California, which is the primary interest of almost all of us in terms of secession. Not necessarily CA, but the USA Empire.

    Yes, if California secedes, its many ‘conservative’ peoples and their towns and counties will be even more at the mercy of the ultra looney Left of Hollywood and San Francisco. But that is not a deal-breaker of the idea. The secession of 13 colonies of the British Empire meant that in each of those 13 colonies sizable numbers of pro-Empire people were made very unhappy at losing their concept of nation.

    The fact is that there will be no classic secession within the current USA Empire, no state or 2 or 13 will leave with the rest remaining as the USA. If anything comes, it will be a divorce. The entire compact will be abolished, with property divided.

    And yes, that splitting of states will mean that we will see movements out of one into the other. We will see more conservative people living in, say, CA or MA or MN, moving to NC or MO or TX. We will see Liberals living in VA and FL and AR fleeing to NY or Chicago or Portland or Seattle.

  39. Wally says:

    ‘Elite’ states secede? Could be interesting.

    – 45% of California, for example, is Federal land.

    – Without US taxpayers money CA would be a 3rd world country completely filled with unemployable & dumb illegal immigrants.

    – Think about this brief list made possible by the US taxpayers / federal government, money CA would not get and then tens of thousands of CA people would lose their jobs (= lost CA tax revenues):

    aerospace contracts, defense contracts, fed gov, software contracts, fed gov airplane orders, bases, ports, money for illegal aliens costs, federal monies for universities, ‘affirmative action monies, section 8 housing money, monies for highways, monies for ‘mass transportation’, monies to fight crime, monies from the EPA for streams & lakes, monies from the Nat. Park Service, monies for healthcare, monies for freeloading welfare recipients, and all this is just the tip of the iceberg

    – Not to mention the numerous counties in CA which will not want to be part of the laughable ‘Peoples Republic of California’.

    – And imagine the ‘Peoples Republic of California Army’, hilarious.

    • Replies: @Alden
    , @Alden
  40. hyperbola says:

    Actually the Muslim invasion got as far as southern France in the 8th century. Here is a bit of the history for Barcelona.

    Moorish Barcelona

    In other parts of Spain, the Moors remianed in power for far longer, i.e. that there is a component of Muslim ancestry in Spain is very well known.

    Historic Centre of Cordoba
    …. The Historic Centre of Cordoba creates the perfect urban and landscape setting for the Mosque. It reflects thousands of years of occupation by different cultural groups – Roman, Visigoth, Islam, Judaism and Christian-, that all left a mark. This area reflects the urban and architectural complexity reached during the Roman era and the splendour of the great Islamic city, which, between the 8th and the 10th centuries, represented the main urban and cultural focus in the western world. Its monumental richness and the unique residential architecture stand out. There are still many ancestral homes and traditional houses. The communal houses built around interior courtyards (casa-patio) are the best example of Cordoban houses. They are of Roman origin with an Andalusian touch, and they heighten the presence of water and plants in daily life…..

  41. The message is neither new nor surprising and it is crystal clear: we white Europeans have a right to national sovereignty only when we exercise that right so as to leave the EU, not when we want to become (Scotland, Catalonia) or remain (Ireland) a full Member State or even have an association agreement with the EU (Ukraine). The rest is just pseudo-intellectual padding. By the way, I have no idea what “globalism” is, nor what is meant by a “unitary European government” and have never heard any European politician even mention either, never mind “welcoming” them. Both concepts seem to be American fabrications and I assume them to be US hegemonist propaganda. As if the US had no problems of its own!

  42. @ThreeCranes

    and what happens to the voters who voted for hillary in those states? kekek

    • Replies: @ThreeCranes
  43. @Astuteobservor II

    If they don’t work, they don’t eat. They will decamp for greener pastures.

    All Hispanics and Africans who came here within the last 20 years are free to go home or leave and live in California, the new Republic of Texas Sur, NYC, Washington D.C., Miami and/or Boston. These city/states will be separated by a wall from the rest of the civilized portion of the new Confederated States of America which will enjoy a government that believes in true diversity by allowing each state some measure of autonomy as was originally conceived by the founders and as exists in Switzerland today (as attested above).

    • Replies: @Astuteobservor II
  44. Jim says:

    An interesting historical fact is that Jefferson Davis was indicted for treason after the Civil War and held in prison for two years awaiting trial. But he was then released and never tried because the Andrew Johnson administration was concerned that the Supreme Court would rule that secession was constitutional. It wasn’t until 1869 that a Supreme Court decision declared secession unconstitutional.

  45. @szopen

    Before Yugoslavia was intentionally destroyed in the early 1990s by an unholy alliance of the Vatican, Germany and the US (and NATO), the overwhelming majority spoke “Serbo-Croat,” which like every well-developed European language also had a number of dialects. But it was all basically one single language. Then you had the Slovenes, and speakers of Macedonian, a Bulgarian dielact. The picture was completed by minorities of Germans, Hungarians, speakers of Albanian and tiny minorities of people who spoke Italian and Walach (a dialect of Romanian, in Istria).

    Present-day linguistic differences between the Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks may be greater (but still largely superficial) now than 25 years ago, but these differences are largely the result of political decisions. What’s more, most speakers of Serbo-Croat can also understand Bulgarian and Slovene. And, given the close relationships among Slav languages, they can also roughly understand Polish, Russian, Czech, Slovak, Ukrainian, and White Russian. In general the mutual understandibility between speakers of Slav languages is far greater than among speakers of Romance or Germanic languages.

    • Replies: @szopen
  46. Wally says:

    Except that Hitler’s ‘Table Talk’ is highly questionable, little more than hearsay.

    • Replies: @Verymuchalive
  47. szopen says:
    @Hans Vogel

    Present-day linguistic differences between the Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks may be greater (but still largely superficial) now than 25 years ago,

    I was told by my friends from Balkans, that Croat speaking shtokavian would not understand Croat speaking some Kajkavian dialect, and Kajkavian dialects are actually closer to Slovenian. Not sure about cakavian dialects. Similarly, Serb speaking one of the shtokavian dialects supposedly would have difficulty speaking to Serb speaking some dialect from south, even if that dialect would also be classified as shtokavian.

    At the same time, shtokavian speaking Croat would understand shtokavian speaking Serb without any problems.

    given the close relationships among Slav languages, they can also roughly understand Polish, Russian, Czech, Slovak, Ukrainian, and White Russian.

    I am Polish. I guarantee that while I can roughly understand northern Slavic languages, with southern languages I have problems; I understand a word here and there, sometimes a full sentence or three sentences in a row, sometimes a general meaning, and usually I understand “oh, this is a verb in second person plural”, but that’s it. It’s worse with Bulgarian and Macedonian.

    Also, it helps that I know a lot of archaic words, I know some basic concepts from linguistics, plus I had a lot of Slavic friends from other countries. At one point in my life I think I could even call myself panslavist.

  48. @Alfred

    That half-witted cousin of the brilliant Wilhelm II, George V, came back from a visit to Germany in 1913 and feverishly harangued the Prime Minister to the effect that an excuse for war needed to be found, and found quickly. Otherwise, he thought, the industrious and intelligent Germans would soon replace the British Empire with their own.
    The tragic assassination of the very promising Franz Ferdinand was not a cause of the war, but merely a timely excuse.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
    , @Alden
  49. The first question I would ask: what are the politics of those hwo propose independence for Catalunya? Are they Marxists? Are they Anarchists? Are they just plain old nationalists? I would say that the heavy handed actions of the Spanish police left a bad taste in the mouths of most people, but that bad taste does not transfers into automatic support for independence. Spain today is not the Spain of Francisco Franco. Culturally, the Catalans can condut their affairs in their own language, as can the Basques and others. A breakup of Spain into mini-states would allow an even more overreaching EU to dominate the affairs of the individual nations even more so. United the Spaniards can at least say no to the EU, broken up they haven’t a chance. I said the same thing about Scottish independence.

    • Replies: @Alden
  50. @Matra

    He [Murray] even claims today’s Spaniards had Muslim ancestors, a typical leftist talking point.

    I’m not sure exactly what Murray said, but he’s certainly right that there is a significant African (Muslim) element in Spanish ancestry. Hence the (formerly) common expression “Africa begins at the Pyrenees”, popularized by the (now “discredited”) American economist and racial theorist William Zebina Ripley (1867-1941).

    Iberia stands out among other southern European populations as having the highest levels of ancestry originating in North Africa as well as in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the concentration of both being highest on the western and southern parts of the peninsula, which is largely ascribed to the long Islamic presence in the Iberian peninsula and possibly African slavery.

    Beyond the Pyrenees begins Africa. Once that natural barrier is crossed, the Mediterranean racial type in all its purity confronts us. The human phenomena is entirely parallel with the sudden transition to the flora and fauna of the south. The Iberian population thus isolated from the rest of Europe, are allied in all important anthropological respects with the peoples inhabiting Africa north of the Sahara, from the Red Sea to the Atlantic.

    William Z. Ripley, The Races of Europe: A Sociological Study, 1899

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @Alden
  51. Daniel H says:

    Excellent political essay on early modern Spain and the limited powers of the King and the jealously guarded rights, freedoms and customs of the various countries under his dominion. Early modern Spain had more democratic rights and freedoms from arbitrary power than England of the time, and just about any other European state, notwithstanding all the Anglophile rubbish we have been taught in school and propagandized on since.

    To give an idea of the limited powers of the the most powerful monarch in the world at the time, King Phillip II of Spain (and many other dominions) consult this essay on Antonio Perez, once the King’s closest confident and later a dangerous enemy. The linked essay relates all the interesting details, which I won’t go into, but what stands out is that Antonio Perez escaped from custody in Madrid, where he was on trial for a capital crime, that Philip II very much wanted pursued. With aides and sympathizers he escaped from jail, secured horses and rode all night to the border of Aragon (part of present day Catalonia). At the Aragon border Phillip’s guards stopped their pursuit because warrants issued in Castille had no currency of law in Aragon. If Phillip II wanted to arrest Antonio Perez in Aragon he would have to go through the Aragon legal system to secure a warrant. This, of course, took time and before any action could be taken Antonio Perez had crossed the border into France, where he lived out his natural life.

    Compare this to the brutal and arbitrary rule of Henry VIII, a near contemporary of Phillip II (Philipp II married Henry’s daughter, Mary, sister of Elizabeth I) who had many of his subjects arbitrarily murdered with the compliance of the English judiciary with nary a peep from parliament.

  52. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Africa begins at the Pyrenees and the wogs begin at Calais.

  53. @Wally

    A non-automatic response, marvellous ! You must be back from your holiday !
    Before you get on to me. Let me tell you a true story. You were probably at primary school at the time.
    Circa 1980, young master Verymuchalive was a student at an ancient British University. One of his tutors was a young ( ok, 30+ ) Modern History lecturer. One boozy afternoon in an ancient pub, tutor tells myself and another young Aryan male that the Holocaust is a load of BS. He tells us to look up the copy of the Encyclopedia Judaica ( the Jews’ own Encyclopedia) in the University Library. It details the Jewish Population in 1938 and 1950. The disparity is -1.1 million. Given natural increase during the period, the probable gross population loss is about 1.5 million during the period.
    When you take into account the number of Jewish soldiers who died in battle, or civilians who died of disease and malnutrition, my tutor thought only about 500,000 Jewish civilians and POWs died in concentration camps and elsewhere, whether from execution, overwork, abuse or disease or malnutrition. We checked EJ for ourselves and the figures were correct. Less than a year later, the article was altered drastically.
    I believe the Jewish writer of the article was an early “Holocaust Revisionist” in today’s parlance.
    He was a brave man and I salute him. I do hope he did not suffer too much persecution. Truth must out, but it often takes a horrible toll of the bravest.
    As for my tutor, he swore us to secrecy. Even then, it could wreck his career. He eventually became a Professor of History, but I’m not telling you where.
    I have been a “holocaust revisionist” ever since.

    • Replies: @Wally
  54. Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Daniel H

    Yes. The Bourbon dynasty that ruled in the 1700s (and later through many contested years) spent a century erasing the liberties of Spaniards in the name of progress. And they weren’t the last (or the first, really), either.

  55. @Daniel H

    Philip II wanted to conquer the Netherlands and England and enforce Catholicism on
    the conquered populations. How would that be a good thing ?

    • Replies: @Daniel H
    , @Alden
    , @Alden
  56. @ThreeCranes

    and why don’t you move instead of them? 🙂

    and I love how you think hillary voters were all hispanics or africans 🙂

    • Replies: @Wally
  57. Wally says: • Website

    Your silly preamble aside, I highly recommend:

    The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry
    By Walter N. Sanning

    Besides merely saying you are a “holocaust revisionist”, what are you doing about it?
    Where can the public read your views?

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @Verymuchalive
  58. Wally says:
    @Astuteobservor II

    In reality he cannot really move. The US government will still force him to pay US taxes to support the parasites.

    And do read what he said:
    “All Hispanics and Africans who came here within the last 20 years are free to go home …”

    Pay attention, he never said “hillary voters were all hispanics or africans “.

  59. @Wally

    my comment was about “hillary voters” as were his comment that I responded to 🙂

  60. Usually a nation is a territory whose independence is backed and declared by NATO and its bankers in order to grab resources and pass pipelines through it.

  61. Being from Quebec I think I know a thing or two about referenda for independence, having gone through the 1980 and 1995 ones. When the movement for Quebec independence emerged in the 1960’s the Canadian government, itself just recently emancipated from British rules by the Statutes of Westminster in 1931 but still dominated by imperial thinking, reacted with a heavy hand. Under pressure from the rest of the country (and perhaps from foreign chancelleries), it conflated the generally pacific and conservative Quebec population with highly marginal groups promoting social changes through violent actions, and used it as pretext to briefly impose martial laws on the Province in 1970. At the time I was at a boarding school north of Montreal run by the Marist Brothers, hardly a revolutionary hotbed, and vividly remember to this day the reaction of our class advisor on the news. He was outraged by this wide brushing move by the Canadian government. He said to us, his 12, 13 year-old pupils, “take your freedom and throw it in the paper basket on you way out of class. You have none anymore!”. I am not aware of any parents who protested to the school about his outburst. This action only led to the election in 1976 of a party promoting independence. An idea originally supported, pacifically, by a small proportion of the population had become mainstream, an unintended consequence of the action of the central government. The referendum of 1980 was however lost by the promoters of independence by a significant margin .

    There are clearly some parallels to draw with the attitude of the Spanish government in the current Catalan crisis.

    Now on with the rest of the story. Ignoring language, the Quebec movement for independence have different drivers than its Catalonian counterpart. Also, the descendants of the French settlers who colonized the Saint-Lawrence valley, forming a majority in Quebec and important minorities elsewhere in the country, have a greater influence on Canadian politics than the Catalans appear to have in federal Spain. One just have to consult the list of Canadian Prime Ministers since the formation of the Confederation; 8 out of 23 are from this group, including the current one. This influence, combined with a certain sympathy in English Canada toward the Quebec movement, helped the central government devising a vastly different strategy for the 1995 referendum (it would require more paragraphs to explain the resurgence of the separatist movements in the 1990’s). That time, independence was rejected by the slightest margin, equivalent to a few ten thousands voters over a population of 7.5 millions. Yet, beside some disputable rhetoric, the Canadian government never threatened the use of force in case of a positive result, nor made any move to contest the legality of the vote. It served its cause in my opinion.

    All this led to a rather ironical situation. Beside Newfoundland in 1949, Quebec is the only population ever consulted on its belonging to the Canadian Confederation. And it acquiesced to it not only once, but twice! (The formation of the Confederation in 1867 was largely an imperial affair, concluded behind closed doors shortly after the Secession War to prevent the North American British colonies to be engulfed piecemeal by the U.S.). To this day the independence movement remains an important political force in Quebec but there is currently no third referendum in sight. This can be explained by a strong desire for appeasement coming from all sides following the nail biting results of 1995, resulting in a change of attitude from the central government. It is also explained, principally in my mind, by the fact that the traditional economical inferiority of French speakers, having its origin in the British conquest of 1760, has largely subsided since. This inferiority has disappeared slowly starting from the 1950’s. Contrary to the Catalonian separatism, this was a main driver for the Quebec one.

    • Replies: @Alden
  62. When national states are owned by financial capital, when all the political parties and the mass media are also owned and crow in unison and have the same policy of austerity followed by more austerity, when public infrastructure is left to rot, or be sold-off to these same cartels or their minions. when their is no choice except accepting their choice — then breaking up the nation is best — for then some semblance of control falls into the hands of the people.

    Catalonia has autonomy in all the things that are not critical, those are kept at Madrid. Some control is better than no control — we will be seeing more of this, much much more.

    Where national governments behave well national integrity is firm despite differences. The tides of history have not made this a benefit that is widely shared. A wise national government would use this to change its own policies to keep the mini-nation, Madrid has shown no wisdom but has a superabundance of stupidity — stupidity is its own cure.

    This is not an abstract debate, it is not about whether it is a good idea or not it is what people want, they want to have some say in their future that is otherwise denied, they want Scotland cut away from London, they want Catalonia cut away from Madrid, Crimea did not want to share Kiev’s fate, nor does the Nova Russia, North Italy has had the bank marfiso and wants no more or it.

    People do as they must, Governments have to change from national suicide to hope. Marcon in Paris threatens France because he does not threaten the banks foreign and national, he obeys their wishes.

    • Replies: @elculer
  63. Daniel H says:

    >>Philip II wanted to conquer the Netherlands and England and enforce Catholicism on
    the conquered populations. How would that be a good thing ?

    Because Roman Catholicism is true.

    • Replies: @Verymuchalive
    , @Alden
  64. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Where can they read yours?

  65. Wally says:

    Just in:

    California secessionists think their path to independence is easier than Catalonia’s

    “There are definitely similarities in the fiscal situation – we both give more than we get back,” said Dave Marin, director of research and policy for the California Freedom Coalition. “But there’s more flexibility in the U.S. Constitution for secession than there is in the Spanish one. California has more tools available to it.”

    Yeah right. Try that without many interior & northern counties, and the enormous federal contracts & massive federal subsidies that CA receives.

    • Replies: @Alden
    , @Alden
  66. AKAHorace says:

    I am ignorant on this issue, how much does Catalan nationalism correlate with the Catalan language ?

    The Balearic islands (Majorca etc) are Catalan speakers. Would they want to be part of Catalonia ?

  67. @Wally

    Thank you Wally, for correctly pointing out that his Logic was faulty.

    All A and H are HV doesn’t mean that All HV are A and H.

    Actually I didn’t even say that. What I said was that the Hispanics and Africans who arrived here within the last 20 years would be invited–nay, paid (as in Israel) to depart, irrespective of their voting proclivities.

    This is all premised on the Left’s carrying through with their plan to secede from the benighted interior states of course, as they have threatened whenever an election doesn’t go their way. I’m merely suggesting that we should hold the door for them as they flounce out in a huff.

    • Replies: @Astuteobservor II
  68. @ThreeCranes

    I don’t think so. First, when the South seceded, the North dragged them back. Today, if every county that voted Trump were to break away from Hillary voters they would take with them the most productive farming, manufacturing, mining, electricity generating sectors of the economy. The coastal Hillary voters are the banking, information sectors of the economy. Now which of the two is independent? Which is dependent?

    like come the fuck on 🙂 at the very least, don’t try to deny it when I can simply quote you.

    it is a good thing unz review comments cannot be altered after the first 5 minutes 🙂

  69. szopen says:
    @Daniel H

    I’d say the powers of the Polish king were more limited, and the rights given to the nobility were also greater. For one, we could elect our king and legally rebel against him 😀

  70. szopen says:

    I wonder why Polish government-in-exile lied about that, why Polish secret agents sent to the ghettoes and camps lied about it, why Jews lied about their relatives being dead, why my relatives lied about the fate of their neighbours… Probably everyone was part of the same global conspiracy.

  71. @Wally

    I have not published any articles on the matter because I do not have the expertise – my background is mainly C18th and Economic History. Also, I have not engaged in historical research for a very long time, as I am employed in private business.
    Obviously I have read numerous books and articles over the years, including Sanning’s. The point I was trying to get across was that even then there were people in Academia who rejected the Holocaust – 6 million Jews and others gassed – as a propaganda hoax. They held ” Holocaust Revisionist ” views, as you, I and apparently Prof Cathey do.
    In the 1980s things were much more difficult. There was no internet and few publishers were willing to print works. My ex-Tutor, who spoke German well and did his PhD on the interwar European militaries, is a case in point. He went overseas, and thereafter only produced articles and books dealing with the period before 1919.
    But the tide is turning. It may be slow, but in the end, Truth will out.

  72. @Daniel H

    Didn’t most of the English and the Dutch think so about their forms of Protestantism ?
    The conquest of England and Holland would have involved mass slaughter and great cruelty.
    Thankfully, the God of Love didn’t permit it.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
    , @Anon
  73. The writer may have arguments against secesssion, yet about half the Catalan population more or less risked their lives in order to vote for secession.
    The quality of our media is such that nowhere, on both sides of the Atlantic, I found an explanation why they want to leave Spain, despite, as is asserted, a lot of autonomy.

    Wilson in 1918 or so introduced self determination.
    Diplomats at the time saw Pandora’s box opened.
    Cynical historians were of the opinion that this self determination was meant to break up the Habburg emire.
    This was a great success, meaning that the break up succeeded.

    Alas Wilson’s assertion that WWI was ‘the war to end all wars’ did not become true.
    The successor states to the Habsburg empire wage war to the present day, as we saw with Serbia unwilling to let Kosovo go.
    Kosovo is the most mineral rich area in Europe, it is now under western control.

    As far as I know Catalonia has no minerals, so there is no interest in other countries to see it independent.

    • Replies: @Alden
  74. @Old Palo Altan

    He was not at all half witted, Balfour already in 1907 said to the USA ambassador ‘that war was maybe the cheapest way to to keep the British standard of living’.

  75. @Anonymous

    Gerald Brenan, ´The Spanish Labyrinth, an Account of the Social and Political Background of the Spanish Civil War’, Cambridge, 1960
    The writer shows that Spain never was a nation.
    It resembles the Habsburg empire, or Yougoslavia

    • Replies: @Alden
  76. @Miro23

    German speaking people ruled the Habsburg empire, although near the end the name was changed to Austria-Hungarian empire, the change speaks for itself.
    Most German speaking people in that empire, catholics, had little or nothing in common the protestant Prussians.
    They hardly understood each other, even today my wife has great difficulty in understanding Austrian German, not to speak of Swiss German.
    The following novel admirably describes the completely static society in the Habsburg empire.
    Joseph Roth, ‘The Radetzky march’, 1932, 1974, New York

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
  77. @Verymuchalive

    There was no attempt at conquest by Philip in Spain, he wanted to put down a rebellion in Holland of heretic protestants.
    And yes, there was mass slaughter, for example in Antwerp;
    Not for nothing Dutch cities resisted to the very end.
    Holland profited, the Antwerp trade came to a standstill.

    • Replies: @Alden
  78. @jilles dykstra

    Dude, I’m not even a native speaker of German and haven’t been to Germany in my adult life, yet my semi-fluent German is enough typically to understand most Austrians, albeit asking them to repeat something a couple times or to slow down a bit.

    Swiss German, agreed, that can be really tough.

  79. Alden says:

    You’re right about some things. Most people who weren’t there at the beginning don’t realize that all of Silicon Valley as outsiders call it arose from NASA and Laurence Livermore Labs and the federally funded researchers at all the universities. That’s Santa Clara and Southern San Mateo counties Ca Silicon Valley began in Mountain View where NASA was located decades ago.

    The people who live in the north east mountains tend to be old hippies and their welfare dependent children and grandchildren. The Whites in the Central Valley and the rest of the agricultural areas are Democrats because they are dependent on government handouts and illegal primitive indian workers.

    The feds do own about half the land in Ca. There was some kind of secession rally a couple months ago. Cindy Sheehan was the lead speaker. Remember her? She was the lady carrying on about one of the Bush wars. She picketed in front of his house in Crawford TX. Only about 300 people came.

    You are wrong that there conservatives as you call them in California. There are no pro White people in California except one person, me. The conservatives are holy rollers who are against abortion. Abortion is 4 to 1 black to White and 5 to 1 Hispanic to brown. I do not see how any racially conscious White person who can look at those stats and be against abortion. Most of the conservatives are college boy libertarians and holy roller bible thumpers who are against abortion.

    Don’t think California farmers and small business men are stalwart anglo saxon yoeman types. They are totally dependent and in favor of cheap cheaper and cheapest labor. They want more and more and more primitive hispanic indians in the state. And a huge, huge number of the small businessmen are totally corrupt crooked turd world brown and asian immigrants. I could tell you stories about the
    crooked immigrant business people, from gas stations rigged to charge for a gallon of gas you didn’t pump to dry cleaners who just press the clothes and don’t send them to the cleaning fluid shop

    I doubt the secession movement will get off the ground.

    Agriculture and the seaports and Asian trade made California great before Silicon Valley and the movie business. They will be there long after Santa Clara goes back to suburbs and the movie industry goes elsewhere.

    The mexicans are 100 times better than the blacks, russians, armenians, persians, arabs, and all the varieties of asians.

    As far as mexicans taking over? All the private schools where TPTB send their kids teach Mandarin and are dropping Spanish. And Mandarin is more popular in the prestige universities than Spanish.
    All the business schools encourage the study of Mandarin.

  80. Alden says:

    The author did a reasonable clip and paste of Spanish history as a whole,but wrote absolutely nothing about why SOME Catalans want to regain the independence it had in early and later medieval times.

    He should have researched the history of Catalonia.

  81. Alden says:
    @jilles dykstra

    Your bigotry and prejudices show. Your pathetic little country is nothing now days but the drug addict pornography prostitution and sex slave center of Europe. But go on bragging about how you got rid of Spain 500 years ago with the help of France, Britain, Italian bankers and various German countries.

    You would never have done it without the help of the great powers.

  82. Alden says:

    Once and for all, the Northern Counties of California are not conservative at all.

    Where did you get that idea? Just because its a rural area where people maintain wells and propane tanks and can build sheds and fix their cars and grow weed? They may be rural, but they are not rural Iowans.

    The interior counties are mostly hispanic citizens who can vote and the farmers and business men who live off hispanic workers. The biggest importers of hispamics in this country are farmers and food processors and that is what is in the interior counties of California.

    Compared to the interior central valley, Los Angeles has few hispanics. Who do you think lives in the interior counties? Scots Irish? Anglos saxons? No, its hispanics.

    The northern counties population pretty much consists of American indians, ultra liberal weed growers
    (our biggest crop) old hippies and their hippie grandchildren and people on welfare. For instance the biggest employer in Humboldt county is the indian rez and the state university. Both the indian rez and the university like all universities are ultra liberal democrat.

  83. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Didn’t most of the English and the Dutch think so about their forms of Protestantism ?

    Not in the 1580s, no.

  84. Alden says:

    For what’s it worth, Marin is a hispanic name. Don’t know if it means anything, Wally, maybe you should take a drive up and down the interior valley from Chico to San Diego and take a good look at who lives there. The population are not conservatives.

    • Replies: @Delinquent Snail
  85. Alden says:
    @Daniel H

    Check out how Henry 8 and Thomas Cromwell enforced the CofE on Britain because Henry couldn’t produce healthy children. Henry personally signed 72,000 execution warrants. That doesn’t count the various rebellions he put down. Or his rebellious cousins the children of his Mother’s royal York sisters who married into far greater families than the Tudors and Beauforts.

  86. Alden says:

    Barcelona and therefore Catalonia has the biggest muslim population in Spain. Hmmmm

    I know the Basque separatist movement was funded and organized by Russia as part of its destabilize Europe strategy. It could be that because Catalonia has so many muslims a Muslim entity is behind the Catalonia separatist movement.

    • Replies: @Anon
  87. Alden says:
    @jilles dykstra

    Holland belonged to the Hapsburg Empire when it was part of the Duchy of Burgundy. Holland belonged to Spain. Like Lincoln during the civil war, and England that wanted to hold on to Ireland, and other empires, Phillip wanted to keep his territory intact.

    Holland managed to get free of Spain as many states have managed to get away from their Empires.
    It had very little to do with religion. The Dutch independence movement got away from the empire that ruled it since the dark ages. When did the Duchy of Burgundy become a fief of the Hapsburg Empire? When Charles 1st of Spain became Holy Roman Empire Charles 5 of the Holy Roman Empire Holland became part of the Spanish Empire.

    Phillip did not invade Holland. It belonged to him and Spain. It was a province of the Spanish Empire. Empires like to hold on to the territories they have held for centuries as the Hapsburgs held on to the Duchy of Burgundy of which Holland was an unimportant and obscure part.

    You don’t even know your own history, just some third grade Phillip was a bad man nationalist propaganda

  88. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    1. Not Russia per se but the USSR. Normally a pedantic note, but nowadays…

    2. Muslim entities just don’t have that kind of clout, not even the Saudis.

    • Replies: @Alden
  89. @Alden

    There are a few towns that are lily white, but most are black and Brown.
    I drove up to mammoth a couple months ago and i was so happy to see less and less black people. Less graffiti, less trash, it was nice.

    • Replies: @Alden
  90. The Scalpel says: • Website
    @Andrei Martyanov

    The interior states have a large number of nukes. Control of these, if it were accomplished, would be decisive.

  91. Alden says:

    The Netherlands BELONGED to Phillip and Spain at the time of the rebellion. It was part of his Father Charles 5 of the Holy Roman Empire / Charles 1 of Spain inheritance from the Phillip’s grandfather, Maximillan Hapsburg Holy Roman Emperor.

    Netherlands and what is now Belgium were always provinces of the Duchies of Burgundy, Cleves, and other earldoms or Grafdoms or whatever and part of the Hapsburg Empire.

    When Charles 5 & 1 died he, as Emperor, gave that insignificant little province to his son Phillip.
    France was always the most powerful and important enemy of the Empire. So the French and English sent rabble rousers to Holland to revolt against Phillip of Spain.

    It was not an invasion. It was an attempt to put down a provincial rebellion, similar to the American civil war. The Hapsburg/Spanish Empire troops were already there. The Netherlands, with vast help from France, England, and various Germanic countries won that rebellion. It was almost 500 years ago.

    The Dutch Reformed Religion as it was called, believed that only 144,000 people would go to heaven. But everyone had to behave as though they would go to heaven by living an upright and moral life. Sounds like a good idea to me. Although why if one knew one would go to hell if not one of the “elect” as they were called why lead a moral life. It was the same as the CAtholic thing of “do good, avoid evil if you want ot go to heaven”

    Why is this relevant to Catalonian independence anyway? Catalonia has been part of Spain since the 1600’s. The play Cyrano is set during that war between France and Spain. Spain had Belgium, France had Catalonia. At the conclusion of the war they exchanged the provinces. It was when Louis 13 was King of France.

    Really Jilles, the great struggle of the Dutch against Spain is not relevant to every subject under discussion. Especially as you never mention it would never have happened without the help of England, France and other countries.

  92. Alden says:

    Phillip did not want to conquer the Netherlands. He wanted to keep it as it belonged to his Hapsburg ancestors since around 800 AD

  93. Alden says:

    Ever seen the movie Cyrano de Bergerac? BTW, Cyrano was gay and died of syphillis of the anus. He got it from his lover Hyacinth somebody. Name a boy Hyacinth, what did his parents expect. He was a great swordsman, basically a legal way to commit murder. Cardinal Richelieu outlawed dueling and enforced it.

    Cyrano, Christian, Madeline/Roxanne, Le Bret and even Ragano were all real people and Christian did die at the Siege of Arras. It was in the reign of Louis 13 of France.

    At the conclusion of that war France got what is now Belgium, Spain got the fiefdom of Catalonia. During the mess after the fall of Rome, the Count of Catalonia became extremely powerful and his people became extremely rich and powerful economically because of the Port of Barcelona and other things. Although rulers of Catalonia were never promoted to Marquesses or non Royal Dukes, they were, like the Counts of Toulouse,Foix, Anjou , and other medieval Counts more powerful than many of the Dukes and even petty little German Kings. Like the Counts of Toulouse and Anjou, the Counts of Catalonia were high enough to marry Royalty.

    The Counts of Catalonia swore fealty to the Kings of France. The language developed as a form of occitan (southern) French. As the medieval wars went on, sometimes Catalonia was a fief of the King of France, sometimes of the King of Spain and sometimes an independent province. But it ended up in Spain in the 1600’s and has been there ever since. Catalans claim their language is more French than Spanish. They claim they are ethnically French.

    Barcelona has one of the highest Muslim populations of Europe. Every single Muslim plot in the last few decades including the Madrid train station bombing has Barcelona connections. It is interesting that this latest push for Catalan independence occurs just when Muslim influence is so high in Catalonia.

    So it’s something to ponder: Just who is really behind the push for Catalan independence?

    And it has absolutely nothing to do with the wars between various factions of Christians 500 years ago and Jilles pride that his insignificant little province got free of Spain with the help of every other powerful country in Europe.

  94. Alden says:
    @Delinquent Snail

    Sometimes I stop in Hollister and Salinas and Watsonville when some kind of Hispanic fiesta is going on. I avoid Santa Cruz like the plague partly because of the traffic but mostly because of all the arrogant old gray haired commumist liberals attached to UC Santa Cruz.

    One thing I always notice: the towns are filled with able bodied young hispanic men loitering about. The fields are filled with machinery and 2 or 3 hispanic men running the machinery. But the newspapers are full of stories about how there will be a food shortage next winter because there aren’t enough illegals to plant and pick. The so called journalists that print those farmer’s assoications handouts are too dumb to know that crops get planted in a few weeks. Then they just grow for a few months. Weeds are taken care of by one pilot in one plane with pesticides. No workers are needed until the crops are ripe and need to be picked. Then just a few workers are needed to run the machines.

    There are an astonishing number of blacks in the central valley now, even as far north as the San Joaquin. I’m in a 85 percent White, 15 percent asian/fillipino suburb now. Heaven compared to Los Angeles.

  95. Miro23 says:

    And you are right, Miro23, about the role of C 2oth “leftist internationalism” which continues to envelope Barcelona. People living very bourgeois lifestyles would come up to you and spout often very extreme left wing opinions, which you knew they had no intention of following in real life.
    My brother, a Post Grad in Spanish History, had to teach in Barcelona for a year as part of his course. I visited him several times. He came to despise Barcelona and its phony Toytown anarchists and other leftists. Neither he nor I have ever felt the desire to return. Without these Toytown leftists, I doubt there would have been a Referendum at all.

    Yes, Barcelona has to be the world capital of Toytown leftist fashionistas.

  96. Alden says:
    @Andrei Martyanov

    Didn’t the loggers who stayed in N. California go on welfare and start growing weed and become rich beyond their wildest dreams? Much better to be an inependent grower than an engineer or Boeing guy totally dependent on being hired and laid off and hours cut and overtime all dependent on what Boeing can get from governments and airlines. Plus having the EEOC and liberal attorneys tell your employer to fire you because they must hire some incompetent affirmative action hire.

    From the anthology of American Folk songs. Still brings tears to my eyes when I hear the Joan Baez version
    And these lines
    Get you a copper kettle
    Get you a copper coil My Daddy made liquor
    Get you some newmade corn mash Granpappy did too
    And never will you toil. We ain’t paid no Whiskey tax
    Since 1792

    Don’t forget, weed has been the biggest crop in California since 1980 just a few years after the liberals closed the logging business down. And it gets bigger and bigger every year and is one of the very few occupations open to the Whites whose ancestors walked over the mountains to settle this state

    I was pretty busy with babies and house and job when the liberals closed down the logging business in the 1970’s. Most were Jewish liberals and activists in various social justice causes, mostly let all the blacks out of prison and never arrest any more blacks no matter what they do.

    And those transplanted NYC rich young Jews absolutely danced for joy that the loggers, White goyim, married homeowners, Christian religion who took their kids to scouts and little league and all those petty bourgeious activities were going to lose their jobs.

    As I remember it, the job training money was for 5 years and then cut off. OK for the unmarried 25 year olds. But difficult for a married man who needed to move his wife and kids to expensive Seattle metro.

    Weed saved us. All hail weed I don’t know any growers and strippers who use it by the way. Good strippers can make 1,000 a day, tax free during harvest which comes 3 times a years.

    I remember the hippie days. We were sooo straight. House, kids, good careers. But the more I see of life in this anti White country of ours, the more I think a life on the edge is better than conformity and haveing the government and liberals shut down everything.

  97. Alden says:

    Ok, I’ll try to use USSR from now on to avoid insulting the real Russians.

  98. Alden says:
    @An Observer

    Thanks for a comment by someone who knows what he is writing about.

  99. Alden says:
    @Daniel H

    Henry personally signed 72,000 execution warrants, That included most of his relatives on his Mother’s York side. the rest were just random people who said Latin prayers. Henry 8 spent the fortune left to him by his Beaufort grandmother and his father. He was going bankrupt when he decided to found his own church.

    Thomas Cromwell saved the finances of the Kingdom by confiscating Catholic church property. Many historians above the middle school wikepedia level believe Cromwell engineered the death of Anne Boleyn because of the financial problems. Anne wanted the confiscated church property to be used for roads and bridges and hospitals and charities that the Catholics had been doing for centuries, not sold to aristocrats to build bigger palaces. But Cromwell engineered her death and he and Henry closed down the existing charities, stopped maintaining the roads and bridges and henry had more money to spend on $5,ooo a yard fabrics and more and bigger palaces.

    Read about the murder of the Duke of Buckingham and Princess Margaret de la Pole Countess of Salisbury who had much , much better rights to the throne than Henry 7 and 8. Henry 8 was more like Stalin than any 16 century European King. He kept his sister Margaret Tudor, Queen of Scotland’s children in the tower most of their lives.

    When Henry died, the entire country, especially the military, aristocracy, clergy and gentry breathed a sigh of relief. In the 1540’s he forbade reading of the English or Latin bible because only he, Henry the great could interpete the bible. Lots of protestants were executed for reading the bible after that decree.

    All you anti Catholic bigots should read about what Henry did to Protestants. He burned them rather than hanged them, a far worse death. I believe England is the only country in the wold and always has been the only country in the world where the head of state is also the head of the state religion. And they don’t even go to clergy school and become clergy. Even the strictest muslim countries always have separate heads of state and heads of religion

  100. Alden says:
    @Brooklyn Dave

    Too much belief in liberal propaganda. Francisco Franco successfully fought and got rid of the Soviet Union communists who arrived in Spain 1934, killed all the socialists of the socialist government and went on the same kind of killing spree the communists did when they took over Russia. Can’t defeat communists by being nice.

    Franco and his soldiers kicked the communist Russians out of Spain and killed a lot of them in the process. He is a great hero

    Do you realize that before 1990, only 2 countries, Finland and Spain resisted and kicked the genocidal soviets out of their countries?

    Stop reading liberal propaganda.

    Other than the misconception about General Franco, your comment is the best I have read on the subject anywhere? United with Spain Catalonia can resist the EU. Standing alone they won’t be able too unless they go back to medieval times when independent Catalonia was a major power in S. Europe.

    I just googled WHY Catalonian independence and got nothing about why and what they hope to achieve

  101. Alden says:

    Mr. Ripley probably didn’t realize that the “Africans” who invaded Spain consisted of Jewish and Berber muslim tribes, not black African tribes.

    The slaves in muslim Spain were White Spanish, specifically; skilled crafts and trades men and 10 to 14 year old girls. They were sold to the Muslims across the mediterreanean. They also stayed in Spain and worked for their muslim owners.

    Moor means Moroccan, not a black African There are probably a lot more founding stock White southerners who have a touch of the tarbrush, 5 or 10 percent black DNA than Spanish.

    Guess Mr. Ripley didn’t know that the black african negro africans live south of the sahara and the caucasian africans live north of the sahara. Although the caucasian africans made the great mistake of bringing black negro africans to their lands just as the English who settled America did.

    Did Ripley every go to Spain? Or did he think that every black haired person in the world is part black?

  102. Alden says:
    @Old Palo Altan

    I’ve read that the level of state public education was so low in 1900 Britain that business had to import very ordinary clerks and office boys from Germany and France because they could read, write legibly and do basic book keeping. Allegedly the standard British kid who had to leave school after 6th grade didn’t have these skills which the German, French, Dutch, Belgium 12 and 13 year olds had I don’t know if it’s true and can’t remember where I read it.

  103. Alden says:

    There are hundreds of millions of descendants of the many English Kings who married Spanish princesses and the ladies who accompanied those Princesses all over the English speaking world. So I guess all we anglo saxons have a touch of the Catholic religion and the non existent black muslim tarbrush.

    Most of those Spanish royalty were red heads and blondes by the way. What’s wrong with those casting directors who cast actresses who look like black haired Arabs as Katherine of Aragon and Queen Anne, Louis 13 of France’s wife?

    Allegedly the muslim expansionists believe that because much of Spain was muslim colonies at one time, the muslims have the right to reconquer it. At least 711 to 1492 the rest of Europe applauded and appreciated Spain’s fight against the muslims.

    But now the EU which pretty much replaced the Holy Roman Austrian Empire Catholic Church in ruling Europe welcomes the muslim invaders.

  104. Alden says:

    Peoples Republic Army of California, good one ha ha ha ha. I understand the hispanics are pretty good as support troops. But the prospect is hilarious. Imagine the San Francisco National Guard of Chinese who hate and refuse to cooperate with any government since 4,000 BC

    And the Armenians and Persians and Russians who invaded S. California to get away from the draft back home. And the Russian, Persian Armenian Indian and Asian suppliers.

    It will be like the civil war when the boot and saddle and horse tack factories just glued sheets of cardboard together and passed it off as leather which melted in the first rain.

    No one I know seems even aware of the secession movement. But then everyone I know is gainfully employed and busy with home maintaince and family. But if anyone presents me with a secession petition I’ll just say, “secession was tried once and resulted in massive military defeat and 100 years of poverty and exploitation.” Of course the people running around with the petitions probably never heard of the War of Northern Aggression

    The fires aren’t even out yet and the liberals are whining that Trump isn;t even helping. While I’m up north I think I’ll write a letter to the San Francisco Chronicle stating why Trump should let California rot.

    One good thing about the fire. it totally destroyed the Pelosi illegal immigrant aristocratic landholdings in the Napa wine and resort area. She and Paul have about 300 million invested up there and it has all been destroyed. ha ha ha. But the insurance will pay for it. And insurance payments are not taxed so they will probably make out better than if they sold their plantation worked by illegals.

  105. Alden says:

    Spain finally aquired Catalonia permanently in the 1630’s after a territory swap with the French at the conclusion of one of their numerous wars. But it was sometimes a fief of the King of Spain before that.

  106. Alden says:
    @jilles dykstra

    That’s the author’s opinion and probably yours. It’s not exactly the truth.

  107. Alden says:
    @The Alarmist

    “Yet, far inland areas, mountainous regions of the state, populated by descendants of the rugged gold seekers, the Forty-Niners of 1848-1849, remain conservative.”

    This descendant of a family that arrived in Yerba Buena Ca in the 1830’s from Boston can tell you that the above sentence is totally wrong and ignorant. The people in Modoc, Shasta and all those other Northern and Eastern areas are not at all conservative. yes, they hunt and eat what they hunt. The have guns. They maintain their wells and have generators. They are real men.

    But they mostly lead a hippie lifestyle and grow weed the state’s biggest crop. The descendants of the 49ers are mostly in Central California and the Bay Area, not up in Modoc and Humboldt counties.

    The author knows nothing about the people of N California and the gold rush descendants. The N California counties like the rest of the state are getting more and more and more hispanic. And counties who are as dependent on weed as Kansas and Nebraska are on wheat and corn arfe not natural conservatives.

    Im not driving down to the Stanford library to read about the history of Catalonia. But from what I remember, the author has many facts about the history of Catalonia wrong. But I do know about the gold rush descendants of the northern weed growing counties in California and the author is dead wrong about us. I’m an extreme White nationalist but that is not a conservative position. The rest of the northern eastern mountain counties are even more liberal than most because of how they make their living and a 3rd generation hippy lifestyle.

    It’s interesting reading articles about things with which one is very familiar. Makes one wonder if any of these authors and experts and pundits and pontificators know what they are writing about.

  108. Respect says:

    Hiperbola You seem to know things about Spain but halfway . The referendum you mention was a joke , it was invalid and illegal , there were not even a list of voters , many people voted 6 and more times and in many villages there were more votes than inhabitants of the village .

    Catalans are supremacists , they think they are superior to the rest of Spain , and even to most of the world .

    Who are you to advice Spain to follow the swiss model ? we are not swiss , who are you to advice Spain to get rid of the monarchy ? , come on , we in Spain do not give a damm for the swiss model ( do you mind the banking model ? ) , and we do not like foreigners giving us advices we did not ask .

  109. @szopen

    If some Croat is here, he could confirm.

    I am a Croat – though, this reply is a bit belated, as I see. So, a few points: “Serbo-Croatian” language never existed, it was a political construct. A language can be seen either as a set of dialects or a standard language.

    Croatian, as a set of dialects, is comprised of three major groups, with regard to pronoun for Latin “quid”- kajkavian, čakavian and štokavian. Serbian language consists of two sets of dialects, štokavian and torlak. Dialectal basis of standard Croatian & standard Serbian is almost the same, neo-štokavian (n Croatian case, it is western štokavian, in Serbian- eastern štokavian).

    Croatian & Serbian standard languages are mutually intelligible to a very high degree because their basis & most of the ordinary dictionary belong to the same speech area. Just, they are not variants of a single language (unlike, say, British and American English) because their standardization processes differed & they had never been either unified or crystallized around the same cultural axis. The closest analogue is the case with Hindi and Urdu languages, which are based on khariboli dialect, but are different languages because their forms are expressions of Hindu & Muslim cultures.

    Croatian & Serbian differ in scientific & cultural terminology & at all levels of linguistics, from accentuation, word-formation, syntax, stylistics, vocabulary & semantics. They are almost completely mutually intelligible at basic level & at the same time, clearly different. You can’t write a few sentences without noticing it is either in Croatian or in Serbian. As for language competency, most Croats don’t know Serbian terminology in physics, chemistry, mathematics, sociology, philosophy, astronomy, linguistics, geography, biology, medicine,…(and vice versa).

    So, these are closely related fully dressed languages, while Bosniak/Bosnian & Montenegrin are just now taking form on the same or similar dialectal basis, neo-štokavian.

  110. elculer says:

    The Basque Country is much smaller than Catalonia but retained their historical ‘fueros’ or rights and institutions. Catalonia lost all of theirs at war with Spain in 1714. To this day Catalonia has quite a lot less autonomy than the Basques. If offered the Basque level of autonomy, Catalonia would gladly accept it, but that will never come from the Spanish State, which has indoctrinated the Spanish populace to dislike Catalonia.

    Language is a key factor. The Catalan language is the language of Catalonia and has been in full use for many centuries: in literature, political administration, media (though 90% media is in Spanish), education, culture, religious, domestic use. It’s also true that there have been periods where it was outlawed by Spain.

    Catalans fear they will lose their language in the not too distant future if they are not allowed to continue teaching it comprehensively in their Catalan public schools and using it as the vehicular language in primary school. The Spanish state is always attempting and threatening to control the Catalan language program.
    Note: About half of Catalonia chooses to speak Catalan as their daily language. The other half speak Spanish.

  111. elculer says:

    04 Nov 2018: The Spanish state is now judging the 12 politicians and civil society leaders who it has had in its dungeons for over a year. The state has asked for 214 years of prison for the 12 people. Their crime is mostly ‘rebellion’. A crime written into the constitution in 1995 by a jurist/ex-judge who yesterday stated he had designed it against military uprisings of a violent nature but in no way should it be used against peaceful actions.

    The politician’s ‘crime’ was to peacefully declare independence (and, immediately, place it in indefinite suspension) after the referendum. So for making this declaration and other associated symbolic and pacific acts of free expression some of these people are going to stay in jail for 15 years

    There is little freedom of political expression in Spain. And no functioning separation of state and judiciary powers.

  112. elculer says:
    @Greg Schofield

    From someone who has lived many years in Catalonia, yours is the most informed comment I’ve read.

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