My "DixieStyle" Rip Van Winkle Dream

by Ron Holland

“Every man participating in a culture has three levels of conscious reflection: his specific ideas about things, his general beliefs or convictions, and his metaphysical dream of the world.”

~ Richard Weaver Ideas Have Consequences

A couple of weeks ago, I dreamed that I awoke in the year 2030 and discovered that the Confederate States of America had been independent from the Washington empire since 2020. Apparently a little known Southern political movement started in the summer of 1999 had taken the Southern electorate by storm and within 20 years the 16 Southern states of the old Confederacy had voted in state conventions to lawfully secede from a morally, politically, and economically bankrupt Washington empire.

How would you like to wake up one morning and realize that the many financial burdens of Washington had suddenly been lifted from you and your family – forever! No more IRS threatening letters or audits, no federal income tax, limited estate and gift taxes that mean you can pass along your business or family farm to your children. All Social Security and Medicare taxes go into your personal private program you control outside the reach of corrupt politicians.

All of a sudden, I found myself economically secure under a limited central government Confederation designed to protect my freedom, wealth and property rather than take it. A strange concept for someone living in the early days of the 21th century where we’ve become accustomed to government as always a threat rather than our defender and protector as was intended by America’s Founding Fathers.

In my dream, no longer did the almost $6 trillion in interest and principal on Washington’s huge national debt plus the $14 trillion unfunded Social Security & Medicare liabilities threaten the economic future and working opportunities for my children and grandchildren. The $75,000 in Washington debt load per person formally on every member of my family had disappeared. This wasted debt created by the Washington politicians to buy their reelection was back where it belonged on the corrupt Democratic and Republican politicians and Washington, DC, USA.

In my dream, I met my daughter Heidi, who was 2 when I fell asleep but now in my dream she was 32 years old. I asked her what Southern Independence was like? She talked about the economic transition during Dixie’s first decade of Southern Independence when she was in her early 20’s.

She related to me her memory about the first day of Southern Independence. Heidi discovered the price of gas, cigarettes and alcohol had suddenly fallen by 30% because the federal taxes were gone. Driving to work a local police officer waved good morning as she reached for her seat belt but suddenly remembered that seat belt use was no longer mandatory, but now her decision.

Driving out on the highway, suddenly she forget the new expanded speed limits on the Interstate highway in her drive to work. The reality of the heavy traffic suddenly dawned on her as big transfer trucks awoke her from her thoughts with repeated loud blasting horns. She increased her speed because yes, truck traffic had exploded with so much industry escaping the high Washington regulatory costs up north, the economy was booming here in Dixie.

Still, she still had two tough decisions to consider on that first day of Southern National Independence. First Heidi had received another job offer from the second new company in a week relocating to her town and she had to decide whether to take the new job with increased responsibility and a sizable raise in salary or wait for a better offer. Yes, along with the growth and new jobs came millions of Northerners and Westerners standing in line to share in the Southern Economic Miracle of prosperity and free markets.

But all citizens of Dixie received preferential treatment for jobs until there was full employment in each county or township. Still the new citizens from the United States and other nations were welcomed as they had to pay a high citizenship fee to the Confederate government for the priceless benefit of Southern citizenship. Talking about a raise, Southern Independence gave her an almost 40% increase in take-home pay without the federal taxes.

But she still had to make a decision about her kids education this year. For years they have been in private school and for a few years, home schooled but now with local control over education, her decision was where to spend the education tax voucher. Now the public schools were just as good as the private alternatives because they taught the values and morals of each local community.

All necessary government programs from welfare and food stamps to her children’s school curriculum were now operated on a local basis without the interference and costs of an entrenched Washington bureaucracy. The former Washington government programs still maintained by the states and local communities actually worked and helped those that truly needed the help.

She thought back to the economic, class, and racial divisions that once plagued the South and asked me why it took me and millions of other Southerners so long to wake up. Didn’t I know that everyone just wanted an equal chance to pursue the American Dream of freedom and opportunity. No more did the Washington politician’s play off the fears and concerns of the different ethnic groups.

My daughter said, “now, we are all Southerners, White, Black, Native American, Hispanic, or Asian immigrants and we are determined to keep it this way. Here in Dixie, we now all live the American Dream, the sad thing is Washington made the American Dream possible only outside the American Empire.

We’ve learned from the mistakes you made in Washington. Now our local, state, and Confederate national governments all are under ultimate control of the voters not the corporate or special interest lobby’s that still control all legislation and government functions in our former capital of Washington, DC.”

I asked how do you know that you can keep your freedom this time around? Heidi answered, “Simple, we modeled our Confederate government on the world’s oldest democracy and most successful limited government confederation – Switzerland. Switzerland has four distinct languages and cultures, no natural resources but the world’s strongest currency and the second highest per capita income in the world.

Despite the diversity in languages and cultures, Switzerland remains a stable and unified society with a strong national defense and neutral foreign policy that has kept it out of every war since 1848.

Today in the South, we have a direct participatory form of government, like the Swiss and voters decide on all important constitutional issues as well as local ordinances. Like Switzerland, every citizen has a direct say on how the government is run, thereby showing support for the government or keeping it in line. Also don’t worry Dad, crime is low again here in Dixie. We also followed the Swiss example of a universal citizen based national guard, and guess what, every citizen soldier keeps their automatic weapon at home, locked and loaded.”

Heidi went on to say, “Again, we followed the Swiss model here in Dixie with a weak office of President, and most powers delegated to the local government entity best able to meet the needs of local communities.”

So, I asked, come on now young lady, Southern politicians are no less corrupt than others in the United States or throughout the world. Politicians never change. Remember what Walter Williams, the brilliant Afro-American thinker said in the late 1990’s.

“Powerful government tends to draw into it people with bloated egos, people who think they know more than everyone else and have little hesitance in coercing their fellow man. Or as Nobel Laureate Friedrich Hayek said, ‘in government, the scum rises to the top.'”

~ Dr. Walter E. Williams

I was pretty proud of myself remembering that quote, and I was sure it would impress her.

Heidi went on, “Right and we damn well don’t trust them or what they promise. This is why we instituted another Swiss political freedom safeguard into every level of Southern government, from the village, town and city, to the county, state, and Confederate central government.

Every Southerner is protected from politicians by the Guaranteed Right of Referendum and Initiative. The Right of Referendum gives the voters in whatever political jurisdiction that passes a law, whether local, state or national, the opportunity to oppose any law passed by a legislative body or enacted by the chief executive or bureaucracy. If 1% of the affected electorate sign a petition questioning a particular law, the law must be submitted to a popular vote for final approval. The law is rescinded if more than 50% of the voters oppose it. “

“OK Heidi, maybe that has worked and this sounds good but often the real problem we faced back in the 1990’s as American citizens, were laws and legislation we needed to protect us that Congress or our states would fail to pass or enact.” Heidi, went on to say, “This is where the Swiss Right of Initiative helps us here in the South not just resist government power grabs but also to force back government when the politician’s don’t have our freedom and best interests at heart, “which is most of the time, even in Dixie.

If 2% of the electorate, sign a petition wanting a particular law or legislation on the books, then the legislative body is required to place the proposal up for a vote by the electorate. If more than 50% vote for it, then it becomes law regardless of what the Congress in Charleston, South Carolina wants. Here, now the people rule and we will fight to the death to keep it this way.

Not knowing how long this dream would last, I had a few more quick questions for my daughter. “What about the rest of the former United States. What happened to the North and the West? Weren’t there independence movements beginning in Alaska, Hawaii, Vermont and out West?”

Heidi thought about my question. “It’s been a while let me think about it. Well, at first, the Congress and Washington government was mad as hell about us voting to get out. They tried to get the states that remained in the Union to boycott our products, they levied special tariffs on imports from Dixie but we just exported elsewhere. Their taxes went up and the politicians tried to blame the seceding Confederate States of America but the election rhetoric failed.

The remaining American citizens were voting all right but not how Washington wanted at the ballot box. Americans were voting with their feet and hundreds of thousands of the most talented and productive citizens attempted to move to the South. Dixie became like Berlin and America’s borders became like the Berlin Wall. Armed dogs, gun towers, electric fences, A few escaping tax evaders, (as the government press called the refugees from Washington) were murdered by machine gun fire by the IRS and ATF guards stationed at the border. It was a bad situation but it didn’t last long.

In the end, the South led the rest of America to freedom and the full restoration of the American dream of limited government and equal opportunities for all with special privileges for none but the truly needy. Different states pulled out over the years. There was the New England Confederation that allied itself with the Canadian Martime Provinces. Much of the West pulled out following Utah’s secession movement. Finally only Washington and a few large cities remained under the old Washington federal government.

Yes, federal government employees suffered as they were laid off and many were unable to compete in a productive society of more efficient state and local governments and private industry. But was the price they paid for lining their pockets at the expense of productive working Americans all those many years.

I could feel myself starting to wake up. National Public Radio came on as usual at 6 AM to wake me up to the latest Washington national outrage or distant military invasion. I didn’t want to wake up. I hit the snooze alarm and was still sort of asleep. I still had to have an answer to one last question.

“Heidi, So what happened to America and the American Dream in 2030.” “Dad, It has been reborn in the North, South, East and West. All of America is now free of the Washington empire and the tremendous cost of a government too large, out of control and out of touch with it’s citizens. But guess what, there is even a growing movement to pull the different independent states and confederations back together again under a resurrected United States of America. I believe most Southerners will support the action.

As a matter of fact, the press just reported that 2% of the voters here in North Carolina have signed an Initiative Petition to hold a vote to consider rejoining the United States of America. The vote will create a state constitutional convention to determine if we go back into the Union just like we voted to withdraw back ten years ago in 2020.

I was waking up again, “don’t let them do it Heidi. Don’t you understand you’ll have the same old problem with the Washington federal government of creeping growth and power until you’re back where we were in 2000?”

“No way Dad. If we try it again, this time we will take the Confederate checks and balances, the safeguards of Initiative and referendum incorporated in our Constitution and laws along with the other states that followed our lead. We will basically have the same decentralized form of federal government we’ve benefited from for the last 10 years. “

I wasn’t convinced, after all she was my daughter and doesn’t have the benefit of my long years of experience. So what, if I’d been somehow asleep for the last 30 years. “Well, what happens if it somehow doesn’t work?” Heidi replied, “Come on Dad, It will work and our freedoms will be respected or we will just leave again. After all, it’s our Constitutional right to secession that will keep us free from those crooks in Washington..

Then I heard a voice trembling with emotion, much like back in August 1999 with the reading of the Asheville Declaration beginning the long road to independence and self determination for Dixie. It went something like this. “When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another”… And then I woke up.

On went National Public Radio again, and the news announcer was stating that we had a moral imperative to bomb some new enemy that wouldn’t follow the dictates of Washington. And I heard a dada, dada, and my two year old Heidi was standing there beside my bed wanting me to get up and watch Big Bird with her.

Was this a real dream, just wishful thinking, or a story I made up. I’ll let you decide but it is My Personal Southern Dream. It’s my dream for a world that my little Heidi can grow up free and independent of the Washington controls, wealth confiscation and repression that every working American is now subject to.

A free nation complete with the opportunity to succeed or fail. Where she keeps most of her income, where she can worship God as she is led by the Spirit, where freedom, opportunity, and equality are practiced out of belief rather than government edict from Washington DC. My hope and prayer is that each of us will dedicate our efforts to give all the people of the South a better future of liberty, limited government and free markets.

January 15, 2000

Ron Holland is a businessman in North Carolina and a founder of the Southern Party.

Political Theatre

LRC Blog

LRC Podcasts