Blast from the past:
One of my favorite speeches ever was the one I gave in Houston, on secession, during the last presidential campaign.
The Mises Institute hosted a one-day event on secession. Ron Paul and I were among the speakers. The Washington Post sent a reporter, for the obvious purpose of reporting on Ron’s remarks as a way of embarrassing then-candidate Rand Paul.
Now you’d think secession would be a question we could discuss rationally, the way we discuss anything else. The American Union is obviously just a utilitarian arrangement, to be judged by how well it works, and not sacred and unchangeable. (Why on Earth would it be? Does the Union exist for the people, or the people for the Union?)
Of course, we’re not allowed to have this conversation. Why, neither Mitt Romney nor Barack Obama thinks it’s a reasonable question, so that does it, citizen!
You should instead discuss whether the top marginal income tax rate should be cut by three-tenths of a percentage point, or which strategy is best to export feminism to Afghanistan.
But wondering if perhaps the American body politic has grown so large as to become dysfunctional and unmanageable — an empirical question that isn’t obviously insane? Why, it’s heretical even to utter such a thought, citizen!
So I delivered a blistering speech, aimed directly at the Washington Post reporter in the audience (though I didn’t mention him).