Scotland, Italy, Spain – The Break-Up?

 

Across Europe, secession movements are gaining steam. Nations one considered ironclad may soon have their borders redrawn. The supranational European Union, long dreamt of by authoritarian European bureaucrats, has cracks in the foundation.

A brief rundown of a few different secession movements, beginning with Scotland, UK:

6 months from now, Scotland will hold an official people’s referendum to decide whether or not to secede from the United Kingdom. The UK, which consists of Britain, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, has been an official entity for a few hundred years, but Scottish secessionism has bubbled under the surface throughout that time. Now, as the UK faces intensifying economic and social issues, an increasing number of Scots are taking independence into deeper consideration.

The interesting thing with Scotland is this: somewhere in the range of 90% of Scots live on welfare benefits sucked in from London. Scotland is a socialist parasite on the back of Great Britain. Scotland does not produce much. There are significant oil reserves in the Scottish North Sea, but the only companies drilling out there are British. Quite frankly, I don’t see how a majority of Scots will get by without suckling the teat of the British government. They don’t have anything to offer. The left-wing Scottish National Party, which has led the independence charge, at least seems to get this to some degree and has proposed an independent Scotland with a low-regulation and low-tax business atmosphere in order to attract investment and stimulate entrepreneurship (I’ll believe it when I see it). They still cling to the welfare state, of course, but at least they understand that the money has to come from somewhere.

Venice, Italy:

Italy is a true Frankenstein’s Monster of a nation, born out of multiple smaller kingdoms being hammered together in the 1800s. Northern Italy has long resented it’s less productive, economically-draining, and massively corrupt southern half. Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that Northern Italians generally identify more closely with the Swiss, French, and Germans, while Southern Italians carry the more distinct Italian identity. Sardinians, meanwhile, have their own identity as well.

Venice, which was once it’s own wildly successful and prosperous Republic until the mid-1800s, has finally had enough of Rome’s endemic corruption and poor decision-making and has recently voted in a non-binding referendum to separate from the rest of Italy. The deal has not yet been sealed, but by all accounts, it appears as if secession is in their future. Trentino and Lombardy, furthermore, have also grumbled of secession in the past; if Venice goes through with secession, Trentino and Lombardy may follow suit. This would mean that Italy as we know it would basically cease to exist.

 Catalonia, Spain:

The Catalan people of Spain have long agitated for secession. These sentiments have greatly intensified as Spain has entered its worst economic period since the Spanish Civil War, with extremely high levels of unemployment and government debt. The Catalonian people have historically been the most productive and industrious of Spain’s differing ethnic groups. Correspondingly, they have long been the target of heavy taxation in order to fund Spain’s bloated welfare schemes. They are fed up with being Madrid’s goose to be plucked for the sake of the Spanish welfare state, and secession protests in Catalonia have steadily increased in scope and intensity.

Economically, Spain is a basket case. I can totally understand why Catalonians, based out of Barcelona, would want to flee from the kleptocratic claws of Madrid. Like in Italy, if Catalonia secedes, we may see a renewed push for Basque separatism in Spain as well (which has spawned a great deal of terrorism in the past). Spain may come apart at the seams.

What is happening in Europe is interesting to watch. The borders we have known and loved for the past 100 years may soon be drastically changing. I am a huge fan of this phrase: “Today will be like yesterday, and tomorrow will be like today… until it isn’t.” I believe that adequately describes the process we are witnessing currently.

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