ed States attained hegemony over Western Europe and becamernheir to its vast colonial empires. A decisive step in the directionrnof global unification, therefore, was taken with the establishmentrnof a pax Americana. And indeed, throughout the entirernperiod the United States, Western Elurope, and most of the restrnof the world have suffered from a steady and dramatic growthrnof goernment power, taxation, and regulatory expropriation.rnWhat then is the role of secession? Initially, secession isrnnothing more than a shifting of control over the nationalizedrnwealth from a larger, central government to a smaller,rnregional one. Whether this will lead to more or less economicrnintegration and prosperity depends on the new regionalrngovernment’s policies. However, the sole fact of secession hasrnan immediate positive impact on production, for one of thernmost important reasons for secession is typically the belief onrnthe part of the secessionists that thev and their territory are beingrnexploited by others. The Slovenes felt that they were beingrnrobbed systematically by the Serbs and the Serbian-dominatedrncentral Yugoslavian government, and the Baltics resentedrnthe fact that they had to pay tribute to the Russians and thernRussian-dominated government of the Soviet Union. By virtuernof secession, hegemonic domestic relations are replaced byrncontractual—mutually beneficial—foreign relations. Insteadrnof forced integration there is voluntary separation.rnForced integration, illustrated by such measures as busing,rnrent controls, antidiscrimination laws, and “free immigration,”rninvariably creates tension, hatred, and conflict. In contrast, voluntaryrnseparation leads to social harmony and peace. Underrnforced integration any mistake can be blamed on a foreignrngroup or culture and all success claimed as one’s own, andrnhence there is little or no reason for any culture to learn fromrnanother. Under a regime of “separate but equal,” one mustrnface up to the reality not only of cultural diversity but in particularrnof visibly distinct ranks of cultural advancement. If a secessionistrnpeople wishes to improve or maintain its position visa-rnvis a competing one, nothing but discriminative learningrnwill help. It must imitate, assimilate, and, if possible, improvernupon the skills, traits, practices, and rules characteristic ofrnmore advanced cultures, and it must avoid those characteristicrnof less advanced societies. Rather than promote a downwardrnleveling of cultures as under forced integration, secession stimulatesrna cooperative process of cultural selection and advancement.rnMoreover, although everything else depends on the new regionalrngovernment’s domestic policies and although no directrnrelationship between size and economic integration exists,rnthere is an important indirect connection. Just as political centralizationrnultimately tends to promote economic disintegration,rnso secession tends to advance integration and economicrndevelopment. First, secession always involves the breakingrnaway of a smaller from a larger population and is thus a voternagainst the principle of democracy and majoritarian ownershiprnin favor of private, decentralized property. More importantly,rnsecession always involves increased opportunities for interregionalrnmigration, and a secessionist government is immediatelyrnconfronted with the specter of emigration. To a’oid the loss ofrnits most productive subjects, it is under increased pressure tornadopt comparatively liberal domestic policies by allowing morernprivate property and imposing a lower tax and regulation burdenrnthan its neighbors. Ultimately, with as many territories asrnseparate households, villages, or towns, the opportunities forrneconomically motivated emigration would be maximized, andrngovernment power over a domestic economy minimized.rnSpecifically, the smaller the country, the greater will be thernpressure to opt for free trade rather than protectionism. Allrngovernment interference with foreign trade forcibly limits thernrange of mutually beneficial interterritorial exchanges and thusrnleads to relative impoverishment, at home as well as abroad.rnBut the smaller a territory and its internal markets, the morerndramatic this effect will be. A country the size of Russia, for instance,rnmight attain comparatively high standards of livingrneven if it renounced all foreign trade, provided it possessed anrnunrestricted internal capital and consumer goods market. Inrncontrast, if predominantly Serbian cities or counties secededrnfrom surrounding Croatia, and if they pursued the same protectionism,rnthis would likely spell disaster. Consider a singlernhousehold as the conceivably smallest secessionist unit. By engagingrnin unrestricted free trade, even the smallest territory canrnbe fully integrated into the world market and partake of everyrnadvantage of the division of labor, and its owners may well becomernthe wealthiest people on earth. The existence of a singlernwealthy individual anywhere is living proof of this. On thernother hand, if the same household owners decided to forego allrninterterritorial trade, abject poverty or death would result. Accordingly,rnthe smaller a territory and its internal markets, thernmore likely it is that it will opt for free trade.rnSecessionism, then, and the growth of separatist and regionalistrnmovements in Eastern and Western Europe representrnnot an anachronism but potentially the most progressive historicalrnforces. Secession increases ethnic, linguistic, religious,rnand cultural diversity, while in the course of centuries of centralizationrnhundreds of distinct cultures were stamped out. Itrnwill end the forced integration brought about as a result of centralization,rnand rather than stimulating social strife and culturalrnleveling, it will promote the peaceful, cooperative competitionrnof different, territorially separate cultures. In particular, itrneliminates the immigration problem increasingly plaguing therncountries of Western Europe as well as the United States.rnNow, whenever a central government permits immigration, itrnallows foreigners to proceed—literally on government-ownedrnroads—to any of its residents’ doorsteps, regardless of whetherrnthese residents desire such proximity to foreigners. “Free immigration”rnis thus to a large extent forced integration. Secessionrnsolves this problem by letting smaller territories have theirrnown admission standards and determine independently withrnwhom they will associate on their own territory and with whomrnthey prefer to cooperate from a distance.rnLastly, secession promotes economic integration and development.rnThe process of centralization has resulted in thernformation of an international, American-dominated governmentrncartel of managed migration, trade, and fiat money;rnever more invasive and burdensome governments; globalizedrnwelfare-warfare statism; and economic stagnation or even decliningrnstandards of living. Secession, if it is extensive enough,rncould change all of this. A Europe consisting of hundreds ofrndistinct countries, regions, and cantons, of thousands of independentrnfree cities (such as the present-day “oddities” ofrnMonaco, San Marino, and Andorra), with the greatly increasedrnopportunities for economically motivated migration that wouldrnresult, would be one of small, liberal governments economicallyrnintegrated through free trade and an international commodityrnmoney such as gold. It would be a Europe of unparalleledrneconomic growth and unprecedented prosperity. -^frnNOVEMBER 1993/25rnrnrn