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« Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 578 -- Job Losses In America. | WILLisms.com | Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 580 -- Massive Debt Accumulation. »

Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 579 -- America's Military & Texas' Contribution.

Texas, A Whole Other Country-

With the wild talk about Texas secession very much still alive out there (despite the fact that Governor Perry, who served in the United States Air Force for 5 years, never advocated secession-- but I digress), and rather dubious polls showing that 40% of Texas independents and roughly half of Texas Republicans favor secession, I thought it might be interesting to look at some hypotheticals. This is bar talk type of stuff, and totally theoretical (for fun, not serious), but let's really dig into how Texas would fare as its own country, and let's look at what an incredible void that would leave in America.

Today, let's look at the military. I've heard a lot of left-wingers make sneering comments about how dysfunctional Texas would be without the wonderful federal government's help and how Texas would lose America's military shield and be taken over by Mexico or some other third world country.

False. Let's preface this by saying that Texas is a donor state. Texas sends more tax dollars to the "banks" of the Potomac and elsewhere than it receives back in benefits, and that figure includes federal dollars spent on military personnel, equipment, and facilities inside of Texas. Only 8 states receive fewer federal dollars per capita than Texas. If you take out the military spending number, which counts as federal spending received by the state, Texas' donor state status becomes even more pronounced.

That's important. Any discussion along the lines of "how are you going to build roads, Texas? Out of magical libertarian fantasy dust?" is really, really misinformed. Again, Texas sends MORE elsewhere than it gets back. In other words, if Texas were freed from having to subsidize the rest of the country, we'd be just fine with regard to our roads and infrastructure. In fact, we already do build quite a lot of our own infrastructure as it is-- with state dollars. Texas has its own self-sufficient electric grid, for crying out loud, and a long-term state-funded strategic water infrastructure plan.

Texas also provides far more than its fair share of military personnel to the United States military:


Numbers above 1 mean that a state sends more than its proportional share. Numbers below 1 mean that a state sends below its proportional share. On three key measures of military contribution, Texas sends more than its proportional share.

Assuming all of the Texans in uniform became Texas citizens, Texas would be plenty covered on military. Texas would probably also work out some kind of deal where the United States would retain access to the various U.S. military installations in the state. Over time, Texas would amicably purchase stake in the bases until it could fully buy out the American government and eventually take 100% ownership. That's the peaceful solution, at least.

The worst thing about Texas' theoretical secession would be the sharp leftward jolt America would take afterward. The United States sans Texas would suddenly find itself to the left of much of Old Europe, politically speaking. With increasing international competition for dollars and people, the United States under that sort of intractably left-wing political regime would take a major blow relative to the rest of the world.

Migration would be an interesting measure to watch for, as well. Sure, a lot of Texas residents would freak out about the whole secession thing and move back to California or Michigan or wherever they are originally from, but, as is already the case, people and businesses would move to Texas in droves to escape the punitive taxation and draconian regulatory environment that would emerge in an America without Texas. Currently, roughly a thousand more people move to Texas each day than move away to other states. While it is difficult for liberals to wrap their minds around that concept, that pattern of migration is nothing new and is something I've written about on WILLisms.com extensively over the years.

Again, let's review: Texas would be free of the burden of being a donor state, so funding for the military is not an issue. The issue is people, and Texas would have plenty of people to take up the slack. Texas' hypothetical military would be one of the largest and most sophisticated in the world. Texas would join NATO and would probably take up a peacekeeping mission somewhere, if only so we could boast about it later.

Just to reiterate: This is just for fun, not real. I am certainly not advocating secession. Far from it, but I will say that this is something most Texans have discussed very hypothetically, often at establishments that serve alcohol, at one point or another.

The point of this post is to underscore various areas where Texas contributes far more to the rest of the country than vice-versa, and to address the simpleminded web videos and commentaries from left-wingers along the lines of how lost and helpless Texas would be without the nation propping it up. Being a donor state or not is not the only criteria for determining whether a state could or should be self-sufficient, but it does undermine the rather widespread misguided arguments that Texas is somehow mooching off the rest of the country.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: Job Losses.

Posted by Will Franklin · 23 April 2009 03:12 PM


AND.. Texas has Ted Nugent! B-)

Posted by: Rob at April 24, 2009 12:27 PM

I think I am getting Cat Scratch Fever! Yay Ted!

Posted by: ZsaZsa at April 24, 2009 07:43 PM

I find it odd that military adventure, i.e. killing humans from other cultures, dropping bombs on their hospitals and schools, manufacturing weapons and sharing them with our allies to use against their ideological 'others', using aggressive military force to stop democratically elected governments which happen to be in ideological disagreement with the U.S., etc. is all so often referred to as, how do you put it... a peacekeeping mission. More military means more violence, means more pain, death, and destruction. But, silly me, it also means more foreign markets bursting with cheap raw materials and child labor for Nike, Gap, Walmart, Martha Stewart, McDonalds, Coke, Pepsi, Viagra, Hummer, Britney Spears, etc. I suppose these are a few of the things you were referring to in you apt critique of Marx in a previous post when you said that one might find him interesting if they didn't care about money or the well-being of their children. Love your children, buy them a hummer. NO, better yet, buy them a slave, and take him or her to church and teach them about all the invisible people floating in the sky, yes the child and the slave, god knows everyone needs christianity in their lives. says so in the good book. I remember that it also says to love your enemy, do good to those who harm you, give away your wealth, and thou shalt not kill. But for now, more military seems like a good solution to whatever problem you have. what is the end goal of we hope to accomplish? can a gun make it so?

Posted by: Brian at May 12, 2009 01:15 AM