Catalonia

I noticed a little something in an AP piece titled Independence drive falters for Spain’s Catalonia:

Catalonia is responsible for around a fifth of Spain’s economic output and many residents complain that the central government in Madrid takes in more tax money from the region than it gives back. But now Catalonia is the most indebted region in Spain and has had to seek a €5.4 billion bailout from Madrid.

So by this logic, California should be teeming with separatists.

The fact is that separatists are usually in the thrall of power-seekers wanting to take advantage of nationalistic or cultural issues (e.g. the Nazis exploited Slovak separatists to weaken Czechoslovakia prior to invasion or the Southern aristocracy exploited racism of Southern peasants in order to garner support for a rebellion).

One thing is certain. When a country is broken up, the power of each part is disproportionately reduced. The combined influence of the Czech Republic and Slovakia is less than that of pre-split Czechoslovakia. As well, a rebellious province introduces something else that is often overlooked: a border shared with an enemy state. Suppose the Confederacy had prevailed in the American Civil War. The most important facet of the CSA was its so-called “peculiar institution.” In continuing the Monroe Doctrine, would not the two North American powers find themselves on opposite sides of colonialism? Wouldn’t the CSA be compelled to prop up dictators lest their own “lesser race” get too uppity?

I would posit that the most likely outcomes of a CSA victory would be either a permanent state of antagonism (taking opposite sides in wars such as WWII), or the South would fall into a collection of warring states with the inherent lawlessness spilling into USA territory. The latter seems more likely, given that the precedent would have been made that any union may be dissolved on a whim of any state. The logical consequence of this would be smaller and smaller political entities could seek an “independence,” such that the fractal nation would quickly collapse into anarchy.

Size Comparison E.U. vs. U.S.

I was looking into going to Germany for vacation. I wanted to see how much of that country I could see. I hadn’t realized how large it is. My research (source: Wikipedia)showed that Germany is over 13% larger than New Mexico (source: Wikipedia). That got me thinking about how various European countries compared with U.S. states. Here is that comparison:

CountryStatesq km
1 Russia17075200
2 Kazakhstan2727300
1Alaska1717854
3 Turkey783562
2Texas695621
4 Ukraine603700
5 France547030
6 Spain505782
7 Sweden449964
3California423970
4Montana380838
8 Germany357021
9 Finland338445
10 Norway323802
5New Mexico314915
11 Poland312685
12 Italy301230
6Arizona295254
7Nevada286351
8Colorado269601
9Oregon254805
10Wyoming253336
11Michigan250494
13 United Kingdom244820
14 Romania238391
12Minnesota225171
13Utah219887
14Idaho216446
15Kansas213096
15 Belarus207600
16Nebraska200345
17South Dakota199731
18Washington184665
19North Dakota183112
20Oklahoma181035
21Missouri180533
22Florida170304
23Wisconsin169639
24Georgia153909
25Illinois149998
26Iowa145743
27New York141299
28North Carolina139389
29Arkansas137732
30Alabama135765
31Louisiana134264
16 Greece131940
32Mississippi125434
33Pennsylvania119283
34Ohio116096
17 Bulgaria110910
35Virginia110785
36Tennessee109151
37Kentucky104659
18 Iceland103000
38Indiana94321
19 Hungary93030
20 Portugal92391
39Maine91646
21 Serbia88361
22 Austria83858
40South Carolina82932
23 Czech Republic78866
24 Ireland70280
25 Georgia69700
26 Lithuania65200
27 Latvia64589
41West Virginia62755
28 Croatia56542
29 Bosnia and Herzegovina51129
30 Slovakia48845
31 Estonia45226
32 Denmark43094
33 Netherlands41526
34 Switzerland41290
35 Moldova33843
42Maryland32133
36 Belgium30510
37 Armenia29743
38 Albania28748
43Hawaii28311
44Massachusetts27336
39 Macedonia25713
45Vermont24901
46New Hamshire24216
47New Jersey22588
40 Slovenia20273
48Connecticut14357
41 Montenegro13812
42 Cyprus9248
49Delaware6447
50Rhode Island4002
43 Luxembourg2586
44 Faroe Islands (Denmark)1399
45 Isle of Man (UK)572
46 Andorra468
47 Malta316
48 Liechtenstein160
51DC177
49 Jersey (UK)116
50 Guernsey (UK)78
51 San Marino61
52 Gibraltar (UK)6
53 Monaco2
54 Vatican City0

.

There are 10 E.U. nations larger than New Mexico? Wow. Of course, I have to question the “European” status of Kazakhstan…

Interesting stuff for weirdos like me.

Note: I tried to enter the table in HTML. It seems WordPress is impressively terrible at that. I found a plugin at Tobias Baethge’s page. I really appreciate it.