28 Nov 2012

Counterfactual Second Civil War


Jon Davis and contributors to Quora, in Salon, have come up with a seriously defective speculative history of the Second American Civil War.

How and why all 50 states suddenly wound up separate and independent is not explained here.

I would say the assumption that every state would operate independently and most states would not immediately re-ally, even re-unify, is dubious.

But where all this really gets silly is the naive assumption that the largest population, big city states are natural winners at aggression.

Here are the states that held the greatest strategic value from day one. They have the ability to be self-sufficient, economic strength, military strength, the will to fight, and the population to support a powerful war machine.

New York

Others that have many of the qualities that gave them an advantage are also listed.


Fat chance of New York mysteriously achieved a never-explained annexation of Pennsylvania to its empire. The Keystone state has a larger rural and small town population than New York and it fields 750,000 deer hunters annually, the 4th largest army in the world.

In the event of a breakdown of order, Upstate New York would probably join Pennsylvania and/or Vermont, and it would be the farmers and deerhunters with the guns calling the shots, not the communicators and arbiters of elegance in the urban metropolis. The rural people would probably just let New York City starve and sink into cannibalism as the primitive residents of the welfare projects wind up viewing the haute bourgeoisie as desirable dinner entrees.

It would be the same story, only even funnier, on the left coast. California’s strike force, consisting of Code Pink and the newly-formed Burning Man Brigade would never even make the Sierras, the SF and LA armies being stopped in their tracks by a handful of Central Valley farmers armed with shotguns, who’d tell them to Scat!

It would be heavily armed and very-different-philosophical states like Wyoming that you’d need to worry about.

Texas, of course, would be in great shape, but it is far from clear that Texas would actually want California or New York.

Virginia, too, has a strong military tradition, and the Old Dominion could undoubtedly defend itself, but I certainly do not see Virginia setting up in business to re-erect the current federal monstrosity, particularly against the will of fraternal states.

I’d rate the simulation a failure. It operated on faulty assumptions from the beginning.

2 Feedbacks on "Counterfactual Second Civil War"

Llegar Tarde

New York City has approximately 30,000 police officers, and areas right near the city (Long Island, Staten Island and New Jersey) are also the home of many federal law enforcement agents. All of these people are trained in the use of firearms. And hey, there are large prison populations that could be freed and used as infantry. Add to this raw cash, the best natural harbor on the East Coast, and access to the great lakes and New York would have the ability to make quite a lot of mischief.


How many of NYC’s finest did it take to shoot poor, unarmed Amadou Diallo? 4 How many shots did they fire? 41 How many of those shots hit him at conversational range? Less than half. Most of those 750,000 PA deer hunters can hit a bullseye every time at 100 yards.


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