California Secession? W.T.H.!!

Go Lean Commentary

What the Hell!?!? Are they for real?!

CU Blog - California Secession - W.T.H. - Photo 1

This is the disgust. The rule of the majority is not absolute. That would be Fascist! Pure majority rule declares that “we can win any vote, so we can do whatever we want”.

The contrast is a Constitutional Democracy. This is where constitutional protections (rights, privileges, entitlements, etc.) are guaranteed, despite majority or minority status. This is the governmental attribute of the United States and many countries in the Caribbean. So what is a minority to do if they are persecuted by the majority in the US?

  • Lawsuits – for court orders to enforce rights
  • Lobbying Legislatures – to enact statures that reflect constitutional rights
  • Protests – to demand rights

… and …

  • Secession

Secession? What the Hell (WTH)!?

That is a different option.

So is this real? Unfortunately, yes. See the full news article here:

Title: Backers of California Seceding From the U.S. Get a Go-Ahead
Sub-title: Group, energized by Donald Trump’s election, can start collecting signatures, but a ‘Calexit’ would require amending the nation’s Constitution

CU Blog - California Secession - W.T.H. - Photo 2

Demonstrators protest against President Donald Trump’s crackdown on ‘sanctuary cities’ outside the City Hall in Los Angeles on Jan. 25. Photo: Ringo Chiu/Zuma Press

By Alejandro Lazo

Jan. 28, 2017 12:58 p.m. ET

CU Blog - California Secession - W.T.H. - Photo 3SAN FRANCISCO—California secession dreamers can begin collecting signatures to place a  nationhood proposal on the November 2018 ballot, after language for the measure was approved this week by the state’s attorney general.

The notion of a “Calexit”—a highly improbable idea that would require an amendment to the U.S. Constitution—gained popularity on social media following President Donald Trump’s unexpected victory in November, mostly as a humorous expression of opposition to the new president, whose policies are at odds with the liberal state.

The measure would strike a line from the state Constitution describing California as “an inseparable part of the United States of America” and set up an election, on March 5, 2019, asking the question, “Should California become a free, sovereign and independent country?”

Proponents of the measure, a group called “Yes California“, have until July 25 to gather 585,407 signatures for the measure. Even if they manage that feat, which is usually accomplished by hiring an army of signature-gatherers, the effort faces larger hurdles.

A number of states have had individual secession movements in recent years, including Texas and Hawaii, but the Supreme Court has ruled the U.S. Constitution doesn’t have a process for states to exit from the union.

But that history hasn’t dissuaded some Californians from toying with the notion. The “Yes California” effort began in 2014 and the idea was discussed more widely on social media under the hashtag #Calexit following November’s election. The state voted overwhelmingly for Democrat Hillary Clinton against Mr. Trump.

“This idea was born a couple of years ago—it hasn’t been a response to Donald Trump, though we have found new support as a result of his election,” said “Yes California” cofounder Louis Marinelli, in a telephone interview from Yekaterinburg, Russia, where he lives and works teaching English as a second language. “We are really excited about the idea that this is starting to catch on.”

Mr. Marinelli was once a social conservative and activist with the anti-gay marriage group National Organization for Marriage, but said he had a change of heart, turning liberal. Mr. Marinelli said he voted for Mr. Trump in November because he felt a Trump victory would galvanize voters in the state and advance the cause for California independence.

Supporters such as Mr. Marinelli talk up the state’s large economy and independent political culture. The state has already set itself up as an adversary to Mr. Trump. State leaders have vowed to defend California’s policies on immigration, climate change and health care, often citing California’s powerful economy and status as the nation’s most populous state.

California had a gross domestic product of $2.5 trillion in 2015, which would make it the world’s sixth-largest economy if it were its own country, according to figures released last year by the California Department of Finance’s Economic Research Unit. Studies have found that California receives less in federal funding than it sends to the federal government in tax revenue, mostly because of its sizable population of high-income earners.

Even if Californians were to vote for independence, the effort would face enormous obstacles. Congress would have to approve a constitutional amendment, which requires a two-thirds vote by each chamber of Congress, or a vote by two-thirds of the states to call a constitutional convention, and then ratification by three-quarters of the states.

An analysis of the measure by California’s independent legislative analyst also found that the fiscal impact of the measure could be large. “Assuming that California actually became an independent nation, the state and its local governments would experience major, but unknown, budgetary impacts,” according to the analysis.

A separate California group that began in 2015 is seeking to register enough voters under the “California National Party” so that it can begin running candidates in local races who are supportive of a withdrawal. That group hopes to build support for secession over time, through elected leaders, and it isn’t supporting the ballot measure.

But leaders of both secession movements say their efforts are serious, and not simply a political statement. “It is a lot likelier than people think,” said Jay Rooney, a spokesman for the National party. “It’s certainly as likely as Donald Trump becoming president.”

Write to Alejandro Lazo at
Source: Wall Street Journal January 28, 2017 from:

See the related story here:

Trump’s Threat to Take Federal Funding Away From Sanctuary Cities May Have Started Fight He Can’t Win
Posted January 27, 2017, By CNN WIRE

Secession as a dissent strategy has not been deployed successfully since 1861, when the dissension over slavery was so polarizing that there was no hope for peaceful reconciliation.

The most significant and notable events related to secession of states, and the initiation of the American Civil War occurred between November 6, 1860 and April 15, 1861. On November 6, 1860, Abraham Lincoln wins the 1860 presidential election to become the 16th President on a platform that includes the prohibition of slavery in new states and territories.[233] Lincoln won all of the electoral votes in all of the free states (except in New Jersey where he won 4 votes and Stephen A. Douglas won 3). By the time Lincoln was inaugurated on March 4, 1861, 7 southern states had already seceded and the President of the Confederate States of America was already inaugurated. – Sourced from Wikipedia.

Can secession be used again to protest the mandates of the majority – California -vs- the full United States. If this is earnestly pursued in California, it will definitely get the attention of the rest of the country and also the world. (If constituted a separate country, California would be the 6th largest economy in the world – by GDP, just ahead of France).

All in all, it is apparent that the 45th President, Donald Trump, has to preside over a divided nation. The 16th President did not want a division in his day, so he  bargained, cajoled and proposed compromises to his opposition. Trump may have to ‘take a page out of that book’ from Lincoln.

This is perhaps what California is hoping for with the secession talk-action! See the VIDEO here debating the viability of this CalExit move:

VIDEO – Can California Actually Secede From The U.S.?

Published on Nov 18, 2016 – With the election of Donald Trump, calls for California to secede have grown strong. So how realistic is a Calexit?

Learn More:
CNN: What history says about ‘Calexit’…

Yes California: The 2019 #Calexit Independence Referendum

New York Times: California Today: Secessionist Groups Seize the Moment…

This is an American drama … worth watching in the next days, weeks, months and years. But reforming or transforming California or America is out of scope for the movement behind the book Go Lean…Caribbean; our focus is the Caribbean only.

The Go Lean book serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU), a technocratic federal government to administer and optimize the economic, security, and governing engines of the 30 Caribbean member-states. In fact the prime directives of the roadmap is identified with the following 3 statements:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy to $800 Billion & create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to protect the resultant economic engines.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines.

The book asserts that many of the Caribbean member-states are dysfunctional and as a result many citizens have fled their homelands – this is a secession of sorts. Consider Puerto Rico, the island’s population as of 2010 was 3,725,789, while the Diaspora population across the US totaled 4,623,716. That an entire nation in absentia.

In general, the Caribbean population is 42 million, with a large Diaspora (estimated up to 25 million); many who have pledged not to return (for permanent residency) until their homeland breaks from the legacy of ineffectual governing systems, failing economic engines and inadequate security provisions.

These failing member-states is the focus of the Go Lean book, but there is mention of one city, Freeport/Lucaya, the 2nd City in the Bahamas. This town is the epitome of a dysfunctional community . They can benefit from a parallel secession strategy as that of California in the foregoing. This was the recommendation to Freeport in a previous blog-commentary, to consider a public referendum to weigh different secession options from the national government in Nassau. Freeport needs more autonomy for any chance of success.

The Go Lean recommendation is the secession option of incorporating a municipal city – with an autonomous parliament – and then become a Self-Governing Entity (SGE) of the CU.

By petitioning for autonomy, California in the US and Freeport in the Bahamas gets more audience for its grievances.

This is how a minority group can get a bigger-better addressing of issues in a country, “leave”, threaten to leave or negotiate to avert leaving. Sometimes, leaving involves secession.

This was also the experience for Scotland in the United Kingdom, as related in a previous blog-commentary.

There are a lot of lessons – from the worldwide struggle – to reform and transform communities. The underlying spirit behind a secession movement should be to make life better for a minority group who do not have the votes to effect change through the election process. This is one way to “appoint new guards” for governance. This was specified in the opening Declaration of Interdependence at the outset of the Go Lean book (Page 12):

xi. Whereas all men are entitled to the benefits of good governance in a free society, “new guards” must be enacted to dissuade the emergence of incompetence, corruption, nepotism and cronyism at the peril of the people’s best interest. The Federation must guarantee the executions of a social contract between government and the governed.

xxxiii. Whereas lessons can be learned and applied from the study of the recent history of other societies, the Federation must formalize statutes and organizational dimensions to avoid the pitfalls of [failing] communities … On the other hand, the Federation must also implement the good examples learned from [successful] developments/communities …

Thank you for the lesson California … and Scotland.

The Go Lean roadmap posits that the challenges in the US may yield a lot more lessons for our Caribbean region. We will be watching. We will “observe and report” on their strengths and weaknesses. Then apply the models effectively here at home. This is the quest of the Go Lean roadmap: to make our Caribbean homeland a better place to live, work and play. 🙂

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