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Thread: Will Catalonia go it alone?

  1. #31
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    That being said, if Catalonia is allowed to secede, it's only a matter of time before it attempts to drive Spain into the sea.
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  2. #32
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    A) the idea that it might encourage others matters precisely jack-all. Your claim otherwise is like saying that you should have no right to free speech because someone else might use their own right to free speech to stir unrest. No shit Sherlock, the inability to prevent people from stirring unrest is why we have free speech in the first place. But let's say it did matter. The Catalans exercising self determination STILL means jack-all because it's completely irrelevant to anyone outside the EU (and the EU means the risks you're so worried about wouldn't be at play anyway). It doesn't do anything about the cost of secession in Africa, or Asia, or anywhere else. East Timor didn't spawn a global crisis as people threw off shackles. Neither did the break-up of Czechoslovakia. The breakup of Yugoslavia caused problems but they weren't global, they were in the former Yugoslavia. And let's face it, you don't give a rat's ass about redrawing borders because you weren't the least bit concerned about the Spanish demand for Gibraltar back with Brexit.
    It matters a lot if you care about human suffering (because secessionism is responsible for roughly half of all civil wars). If you don't, fair enough.

    If countries (or a national and regional government) sit down and work out a way to transfer territory, all the power to them. We're talking about unilateral declarations here.

    I didn't say that, I said law. It's what the law does that has value, not that it exists at all. And you plainly don't give a rat's ass about what the law is or what it does because you're only interested in maintaining the status quo BECAUSE it's the status quo. You sure as hell don't care about the law itself because as shown above, the law is irrelevant, it's whether a border might get redrawn and plunge the world into flame that matters.
    Spanish courts repeatedly said this referendum is unconstitutional and illegal. By supporting Catalonia's "right" to persist with the referendum, you're opposing the rule of law. Is that your position? That regional governments should be able to ignore national court decisions when it suits their interests to do so?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    That being said, if Catalonia is allowed to secede, it's only a matter of time before it attempts to drive Spain into the sea.
    It would have a huge impact on the Spanish economy, particularly in the short-term, when Spain would have to reorient a hell of a lot of commerce and borrow tons of money to meet its previous obligations (the Spanish economy isn't exactly in great shape as things stand). What justifies this massive economic dislocation? How are the Catalans hurt from the present arrangement? Nationalism does not and should not trump other considerations.
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  3. #33
    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    It matters a lot if you care about human suffering (because secessionism is responsible for roughly half of all civil wars). If you don't, fair enough.
    Spain and Catalonia don't mean anything for and would have zero impact on secession anywhere else in the world except, possibly other countries in the EU where we can be sure that civil war is not going to be be part of things, in this specific situation or in general. Straw man and a slippery slope fallacy to boot,

    [quote[If countries (or a national and regional government) sit down and work out a way to transfer territory, all the power to them. We're talking about unilateral declarations here.[/quote]

    No, we're talking about a referendum here.

    Spanish courts repeatedly said this referendum is unconstitutional and illegal. By supporting Catalonia's "right" to persist with the referendum, you're opposing the rule of law. Is that your position? That regional governments should be able to ignore national court decisions when it suits their interests to do so?
    If the "rule of law" is forbidding self-determination than the "rule of law" is wrong and furthermore is violating human rights. The consent of the governed is absolutely fundamental to governance in all situations and is explicitly and formally placed on a higher level than the law in democracies where they recognize precisely that will of the governed as the source of all law-making authority in the first place. If they withdraw their consent than your "rule of law" has already been suspended and become nothing but acts of tyranny and oppression by people holding others formerly governed under their authority by force and threat of force.
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  4. #34
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    Spain and Catalonia don't mean anything for and would have zero impact on secession anywhere else in the world except, possibly other countries in the EU where we can be sure that civil war is not going to be be part of things, in this specific situation or in general. Straw man and a slippery slope fallacy to boot
    That's demonstrably untrue and contradicted by a substantial amount of civil war research. See Warbara Walter and the whole civil war reputation literature.

    No, we're talking about a referendum here.
    Unilateral referendum. I have no problem with the Scottish referendum because the Brits agreed to it (though I thought it would be a dumb decision to vote yes). I see nationalism as an occasionally necessary evil. You seem to see it as the highest international principle, and a principle worth actively promoting.

    If the "rule of law" is forbidding self-determination than the "rule of law" is wrong and furthermore is violating human rights. The consent of the governed is absolutely fundamental to governance in all situations and is explicitly and formally placed on a higher level than the law in democracies where they recognize precisely that will of the governed as the source of all law-making authority in the first place. If they withdraw their consent than your "rule of law" has already been suspended and become nothing but acts of tyranny and oppression by people holding others formerly governed under their authority by force and threat of force.
    If subjective morality trumps law, then there is no rule of law. There's always a moral argument for violating any law. Please tell me why self-determination on the basis of ethnicity is somehow superior to sovereignty, rule of law, and international law in general.
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  5. #35
    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    That's demonstrably untrue
    Really. Remind me again where the massive wave of secessionism was after the already cited breakups and secessions. Oh wait, it doesn't exist. I'm not familiar with the body of research you're claiming to cite but I am familiar with you and so I'm quite positive it doesn't BEGIN to say or support what you're claiming.

    Unilateral referendum. I have no problem with the Scottish referendum because the Brits agreed to it
    Right, self-determination is only worth anything when those who would otherwise hold you in subjugation magnanimously (and self-interestedly) choose to let you have it. No.

    (though I thought it would be a dumb decision to vote yes). I see nationalism as an occasionally necessary evil. You seem to see it as the highest international principle, and a principle worth actively promoting.
    Where have I said nationalism? I said self-determination. I didn't bring the Catalan language or national self-determination into this at all. Self-determination is not nor should be limited to linguistic groups.

    If subjective morality trumps law, then there is no rule of law.
    I haven't said boo about morality either. You're scatter-gunning and grasping as straws because you know that your opposition to consent for governance goes against all contemporary political theory. And I will again point out to you that international law in general enshrines the concept of self-determination. It is a peremptory norm. It's found in hosts of constitutions, charters, treaties, etc, many of which Spain is a signatory to. It's not just CIL, it's formal international law.
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  6. #36
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Your logic is absurd and oppressive Loki. It is like suggesting that most violence occurs when people are trying to change their leaders so we shouldn't have elections lest it cause people in other nations to want to choose who rules them too.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
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  7. #37
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Self determination of peoples is literally in Chapter 1 Article 1 of the Charter of the United Nations. Go cry me a river if you are upset that people oppressed by being denied that right are going to cause some other people's to seek their own fundamental rights to self determination.

    Yes many believe that sovereignty trumps self determination. I don't. Sovereignty is meaningless without the consent of the governed. You claim repeatedly that the Catalan people aren't being oppressed but being denied their right to self determination IS oppressive in and of itself. So yes they are being oppressed.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  8. #38
    Senior Member Flixy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Self determination of peoples is literally in Chapter 1 Article 1 of the Charter of the United Nations. Go cry me a river if you are upset that people oppressed by being denied that right are going to cause some other people's to seek their own fundamental rights to self determination.

    Yes many believe that sovereignty trumps self determination. I don't. Sovereignty is meaningless without the consent of the governed. You claim repeatedly that the Catalan people aren't being oppressed but being denied their right to self determination IS oppressive in and of itself. So yes they are being oppressed.
    Not that I disagree entirely, but sovereignty inherently comes with some loss of self determination right? And it's typically not extended to individuals - if I would want to personally secede it would not be accepted. And for example worry the Scottish referendum, it's not like every county that did vote for independence could become independent. And would you be fine if London City becomes independent because they don't like Brexit?

    On a side note a referendum being unofficial in advance does affect the outcome as well.
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  9. #39
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    I believe you guys are misrepresenting international view on right to unilaterally secede.
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  10. #40
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Indeed Flixy there is a difference between individuals and regions. Catalonia is already a distinct, defined region with its own people, borders etc

    London is an odd example as London is the capital city and I have never heard of a capital seeking indepenence from and for itself. However yes if London were to want to become independent and a London Independence Party won the majority at the London elections pledging to hold a referendum then I would respect that. There is no such thing right now.

    To my knowledge there are 4 groups seeking independence / autonomy within the UK.

    Northern Ireland - Sinn Fein, SDLP. Devolved power sharing agreement Post Good Friday. A victorious referendum would see NI join the rest of Eire.

    Scotland - SNP in power but independence rejected in the referendum and the SNP have gone backwards now and so taken SindyRef2 off the table.

    Wales - Plaid Cymru the Party of Wales is like a mini SNP but have a fraction of the popularity. The idea of Welsh independence is for the birds but might become more plausible were the Scots to go first.

    Cornwall - Mebyon Kernow is a party of Cornish Nationalists that seek to see the Duchy of Cornwall regarded as it's own nation with devolved powers and a national assembly within the UK like Scotland and Wales. Has the support of under 2% of Cornish voters.

    I have not heard of any London Independence movements and doubt any would get off the ground. Despite the fervent imaginings of Remainers people don't care about the EU that much. Even the SNP haven't been able to capitalise on Brexit and a fictional LNP certainly won't.

    If any county in England wants indepenence then so be it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  11. #41
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Self determination of peoples is literally in Chapter 1 Article 1 of the Charter of the United Nations.
    In practice territorial integrity has tended to be given precedence except in the special case of decolonization.

    Yes many believe that sovereignty trumps self determination. I don't. Sovereignty is meaningless without the consent of the governed. You claim repeatedly that the Catalan people aren't being oppressed but being denied their right to self determination IS oppressive in and of itself. So yes they are being oppressed.
    Sure, and, by this reasoning, 1.5+ million Scots are being oppressed. How great is their suffering?
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  12. #42
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Yes some may be disappointed. Oh well that's democracy for you.

    I have no ethical concerns. Yes a country may have evolved over a long period of time but then so should patriotic feeling. People should feel loyal to their country and it is quite an extreme act to vote for independence. In the real world where people have sought secession it is nations that were long-term divided with a minority that was either oppressed or unhappy. Even then it has taken a lot to cause a majority to vote for independence. It is more dubious to keep a minority trapped than theoretical concerns about potential issues.
    That you don't have ethical concerns is not surprising. Nevertheless, you should have ethical concerns, because this is an ethically complex matter.

    Catalonians don't own Catalonia all by themselves. Catalonia's resources--just as the rest of Spain's resources--are held in common by the public. In seceding, Catalonia would attempt to take ownership of resources owned by all Spaniards. This is an ethical problem--is it right for some members of the public to wrest control of a public commons away from the rest of the public?

    Similarly, in seceding, Catalonians would take all current and future benefits of public funding and policy decisions about investing, infrastructure etc. for themselves, in addition to inflicting massive economic and social harm on the rest of Spain (disrupted trade, cost of restructuring businesses and govt. etc). Any monetary "compensation" is likely to short-change the rest of Spain. This is an ethical problem (although I understand how you might be reluctant to acknowledge it)--is it right for one party to suddenly take all current and future benefits of an arrangement for itself?

    The above are some examples of economic harm that will have real consequences in the form of increased suffering and death and those consequences must be weighed against the Catalonians' right to self-determination. The right to self-determination, such as it is, does not trump all other concerns. Is it all right to indiscriminately slaughter civilians in an attempt to secede? Is it all right to employ rape & torture? No. The right must be weighed against other rights.

    There are other ethical concerns. A Catalonian secession based on a referendum with an 80% - 20% outcome would in effect, by your reasoning, entail the tyrannical subjugation of the rights of 20% of Catalonians--a greater proportion than the theoretical maximum proportion of Spanish citizens in Catalonia being brutally oppressed by Spain. If you dismiss this as an inconsequential and necessary feature of democracy, the wishes of the separatist minority can also be dismissed in the same fashion.

    Putting aside ethical considerations, the claims that this will not encourage secession elsewhere are overstated. Regardless of your thoughts on how Catalonian secession may or may not influence secession in other countries, it's reasonable to expect some impact on Spain. Or do you think this will be ignored by Basque nationalists and organizations like ETA?
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  13. #43
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Self determination of peoples is literally in Chapter 1 Article 1 of the Charter of the United Nations. Go cry me a river if you are upset that people oppressed by being denied that right are going to cause some other people's to seek their own fundamental rights to self determination.

    Yes many believe that sovereignty trumps self determination. I don't. Sovereignty is meaningless without the consent of the governed. You claim repeatedly that the Catalan people aren't being oppressed but being denied their right to self determination IS oppressive in and of itself. So yes they are being oppressed.
    I teach half a dozen classes relating to the UN and international law. Your interpretation is plain wrong. You don't get to pick and choose which part of the UN Charter to follow based on their order in the document. Sovereignty​ is the default principle, while the right to self-determination is extremely constrained. To obtain self-determination without consent from the country you're seceding from, you need to start with the decolonization committee in the UN General Assembly. Then you need their report to be voted on by the entire UN GA and sent to the Security Council. Only the Security Council can require self-determination, and it would have to be justified in terms of its contribution to international peace and security (though the SC makes that determination for itself). Since decolonization, no one even considers this option unless crimes against humanity are taking place.

    As someone who doesn't take international law seriously, it's odd that you'd point to aspirational parts of the doctrine. To be meaningful, it must be codified in binding treaties and conventions. There must be some mechanism for punishing violators. While that is the case for sovereignty, by far the dominant doctrine in international law, there's little to none for self-determination for non-colonial countries. Even genocide-prevention has a weak role in international law relative to sovereignty.

    So don't take us for idiots by pretending​ that your interpretation of the UN Charter is somehow on par with that of the actual UN, diplomats, and international jurists.
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  14. #44
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Let me count the ways in which unilateral self-determination (in all but the most extreme case of mistreatment of the minority) is immoral.

    1. It imposes a massive externality on the rest of the country, an imposition that the rest of the country can do nothing to prevent and an imposition for which the rest of the country is never sufficiently compensated. That makes unilateral self-determination illiberal.

    2. It allows a minority to secede whenever they don't get their way through the democratic process. Any time someone loses an election or doesn't get their way in a major dispute, they can retaliate by seceding. That is inherently undemocratic. Democracy means accepting both victories and defeats. It cannot function when the loser can give the winner the finger by leaving.

    3. It violates most states' constitutions. It's nearly always opposed by the national courts. Regions don't get to decide what national laws to follow and which ones to ignore (Fuzzy should know about constitutional standing of the nullification doctrine). This means unilateral self-determination undermines the rule of law.

    4. Under international law, countries do not have the right to unilateral self-determination. There are mechanisms in place for self-determination, and they require either consent from the mother country or approval from the UN Security Council (usually both; see East Timor, which did witness massive human rights abuses). That means unilateral self-determination violates international law.

    5. Newly independent countries are at a heightened risk of civil war and autocracy. The act of unilateral self-determination itself usually comes with immense bloodshed. Each secession also emboldens other minority groups, which helps that violence spread across state borders. Unilateral self-determination is thus directly responsible for mass violence.

    And what's the case for it (except in cases of massive oppression)? That some people are racist assholes and want to be ruled only by those who look, talk, and act like them because their ancestors from half a millennium ago did the same? Boo fucking hoo.
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  15. #45
    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    I believe you guys are misrepresenting international view on right to unilaterally secede.
    Again, right now the only unilateral thing we're talking about is a referendum. If discontent with membership is high enough that there are repeated, strongly supported calls for independence and if there is a a vote with proper turn-out which makes a majority desire for that independence clear and the standing government's response is just "screw you, we're gonna criminally prosecute people for trying" then there is a SERIOUS problem and self-determination (which I've said before is a peremptory norm, a principle in international law which allows no derogation, which overrides sovereignty) absolutely does come into play.
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  16. #46
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    Again, right now the only unilateral thing we're talking about is a referendum. If discontent with membership is high enough that there are repeated, strongly supported calls for independence and if there is a a vote with proper turn-out which makes a majority desire for that independence clear and the standing government's response is just "screw you, we're gonna criminally prosecute people for trying" then there is a SERIOUS problem and self-determination (which I've said before is a peremptory norm, a principle in international law which allows no derogation, which overrides sovereignty) absolutely does come into play.
    Except this referendum violates the Spanish constitution and has been ruled illegal by Spanish courts. You're saying that your morality takes precedence over the Spanish rule of law.
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  17. #47
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    Again, right now the only unilateral thing we're talking about is a referendum.
    Afaict from the posts on page 1, we are discussing both the right to hold a referendum as well as the broader issues arising from secession based on the right to self-determination.

    If discontent with membership is high enough that there are repeated, strongly supported calls for independence and if there is a a vote with proper turn-out which makes a majority desire for that independence clear and the standing government's response is just "screw you, we're gonna criminally prosecute people for trying" then there is a SERIOUS problem
    Perhaps, perhaps not. If it's done in a way that violates a nation's laws, then one has to first consider whether or not those laws are legitimate, and in this case I don't believe it's straightforward.

    and self-determination (which I've said before is a peremptory norm, a principle in international law which allows no derogation, which overrides sovereignty) absolutely does come into play.
    You have said that and I have found little to support that categorical assertion. What I have found are numerous discussions demonstrating controversy and uncertainty wrt the status of that right in relation to territorial integrity. Whereas jurists may now recognize the right to self-determination as having risen to the status of jus cogens, in practice this right has often or usually been ranked below nations' right to territorial integrity. International law is constantly evolving and no doubt we will one day come to a point where your claim will be undeniably true, but recent history is replete with examples of self-declared nations who have not been recognized by the international community. Decolonization represents a special case, and exceptions have been made in cases where the people seeking the right to govern themselves are attempting to free themselves from a nation that violates other established norms/laws eg. through egregious violations of human rights in the form of torture etc. But even then it's not as simple as you make it out to be, whether you look at rulings or just consider reality. As much as I look forward to there one day being a free and sovereign Palestinian state for example, I suspect that's not going to happen in my lifetime barring intervention from extraterrestrials.
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  18. #48
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    Catalonians don't own Catalonia all by themselves. Catalonia's resources--just as the rest of Spain's resources--are held in common by the public. In seceding, Catalonia would attempt to take ownership of resources owned by all Spaniards. This is an ethical problem--is it right for some members of the public to wrest control of a public commons away from the rest of the public?
    That is democracy for you. Happens all the time that previously public commons get changed or removed. This is just a more extreme example but not the most extreme.
    Similarly, in seceding, Catalonians would take all current and future benefits of public funding and policy decisions about investing, infrastructure etc. for themselves, in addition to inflicting massive economic and social harm on the rest of Spain (disrupted trade, cost of restructuring businesses and govt. etc). Any monetary "compensation" is likely to short-change the rest of Spain. This is an ethical problem (although I understand how you might be reluctant to acknowledge it)--is it right for one party to suddenly take all current and future benefits of an arrangement for itself?
    I see no reason why I especially might be reluctant to admit it. I have never advocated Lancashire Independence. I'm quite happy with my nation remaining my nation.

    If you're referring to the EU that is a completely different kettle of fish. The EU is not a sovereign nation and it was always believed to be legally possible to exit. Since Lisbon (a treaty I opposed but got ratified anyway) that has been explicitly the case.
    The above are some examples of economic harm that will have real consequences in the form of increased suffering and death and those consequences must be weighed against the Catalonians' right to self-determination. The right to self-determination, such as it is, does not trump all other concerns. Is it all right to indiscriminately slaughter civilians in an attempt to secede? Is it all right to employ rape & torture? No. The right must be weighed against other rights.
    You are being absurd. We are talking about ballots not bullets.
    There are other ethical concerns. A Catalonian secession based on a referendum with an 80% - 20% outcome would in effect, by your reasoning, entail the tyrannical subjugation of the rights of 20% of Catalonians--a greater proportion than the theoretical maximum proportion of Spanish citizens in Catalonia being brutally oppressed by Spain. If you dismiss this as an inconsequential and necessary feature of democracy, the wishes of the separatist minority can also be dismissed in the same fashion.
    No it would not since the losers will have lost. That's democracy. The separatists are not a minority if they win they're a majority in their region.
    Putting aside ethical considerations, the claims that this will not encourage secession elsewhere are overstated. Regardless of your thoughts on how Catalonian secession may or may not influence secession in other countries, it's reasonable to expect some impact on Spain. Or do you think this will be ignored by Basque nationalists and organizations like ETA?
    I should hope it would not be ignored! I would WANT it to be precedent. Let the Basques seek their freedom via ballots not bullets too. If a majority of Basques want their own nation they should have it.
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  19. #49
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    I teach half a dozen classes relating to the UN and international law. Your interpretation is plain wrong.
    No it is not since I never claimed that self determination trumps sovereignty in international law. I just pointed it out it is part of it.

    The fact that international law tends to emphasise the rights of nations to illiberally oppress their people more than liberally letting the people decide is just one more reason why the law is an ass.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
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  20. #50
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    1. It imposes a massive externality on the rest of the country, an imposition that the rest of the country can do nothing to prevent and an imposition for which the rest of the country is never sufficiently compensated. That makes unilateral self-determination illiberal.
    LOL you must be joking right? It is liberal to prevent people from determining their future in the same way as the Peoples Democratic Republic of Korea is democratic. All sorts of governments have tried to take illiberal actions "to prevent externalities" that doesn't make them liberal and can justify any action since all actions have externalities.
    2. It allows a minority to secede whenever they don't get their way through the democratic process. Any time someone loses an election or doesn't get their way in a major dispute, they can retaliate by seceding. That is inherently undemocratic. Democracy means accepting both victories and defeats. It cannot function when the loser can give the winner the finger by leaving.
    Again you are beyond parody. A vote is not undemocratic it is democracy in action.

    Since voting to leave is essentially final and irreversible as well as an incredibly serious decision this is not about not liking a result in another ballot. This is a massive breakdown that is not taken lightly but if taken is done so democratically.
    3. It violates most states' constitutions. It's nearly always opposed by the national courts. Regions don't get to decide what national laws to follow and which ones to ignore (Fuzzy should know about constitutional standing of the nullification doctrine). This means unilateral self-determination undermines the rule of law.
    If the law is immoral then undermining it is not. If the law said I'm dictator for life and you get no say then you have every right to undermine that. Since here we are talking about votes rather than bombs then that is a good thing.
    4. Under international law, countries do not have the right to unilateral self-determination. There are mechanisms in place for self-determination, and they require either consent from the mother country or approval from the UN Security Council (usually both; see East Timor, which did witness massive human rights abuses). That means unilateral self-determination violates international law.
    So what? International law = morality to you?
    5. Newly independent countries are at a heightened risk of civil war and autocracy. The act of unilateral self-determination itself usually comes with immense bloodshed. Each secession also emboldens other minority groups, which helps that violence spread across state borders. Unilateral self-determination is thus directly responsible for mass violence.
    Citation needed.

    You've been asked repeatedly to provide evidence for violence coming from peaceful and democratically achieved independence yet you still haven't provided any.
    And what's the case for it (except in cases of massive oppression)? That some people are racist assholes and want to be ruled only by those who look, talk, and act like them because their ancestors from half a millennium ago did the same? Boo fucking hoo.
    The case for it is that people get to choose who rules them in a democracy.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
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  21. #51
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Most Americans don't want to be ruled by Trump. Time to create a new country. And then we can create a separate country for those living in the Anti-Trumpland who do love Trump. Let's keep on splitting countries until everyone is ruled exactly by the person they want.
    Hope is the denial of reality

  22. #52
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    You keep obsessing falsely over transient politics when that is not what this is about. This is about long standing indepenence movements that are more than just one person or policy.

    If the majority of a State voted to leave the union then so be it if loyalty to and pride in America means so little to the citizens of that State.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  23. #53
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Democracy means accepting defeat. It does not mean redrawing borders until you're guaranteed victory.

    Why should I care about how longstanding the movement is? Does the suffering of your ancestors magically carry over to you? It doesn't help your case that the Catalan movement to gain independence is 10 years old.

    The whole reason for self-determination was because a lot of people were conquered by massive empires and had no say in those imperial governments. The Catalans were not conquered by the Spanish. The Catalans were not particularly oppressed by the Spanish. The Catalans have substantial political and economic power within the Spanish state. There's literally no reason to change the status quo other than a bunch of assholes deciding they don't want to subsidize poorer parts of Spain.
    Hope is the denial of reality

  24. #54
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Once again nothing about this is about rejecting defeat. It is about who you want as your countrymen.

    There is nothing "magical" about shared culture, history, nationalism or belonging.

    The Catalan movement for independence is nascent yes but modern moves for Catalan autonomy etc dates back since 1922. Since then the Catalans have repeatedly been mistreated and oppressed by the Spanish state seeing successive dictators take power and abolish their autonomy. After the end of the Franco dictatorship they again sought autonomy within Spain and reached an agreement with the Spanish Central Government for Catalan Autonomy ... only to see it once again overturned this time by the Spanish Supreme Court abolishing their mutually agreed autonomy. It was only after this that they decided they'd had enough and would go independent. I can't blame them.

    Maybe if you don't want people to seek independence you shouldn't betray and oppress them repeatedly, that would be a start.

    PS Catalan autonomy moves didn't just suddenly begin in the early 20th century ... there were moves seeking Catalan independence in the 17th century and 19th century too. While Catalan autonomy was only abolished in the 18th century so its not exactly been a permanently happily agreed history.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  25. #55
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    It's worth noting that Catalan independence was an extremist pursuit only a few years ago but in recent years as the Spanish have repeatedly said the Catalans can't decide for themselves (as well as abolishing the previously agreed autonomy) has seen the support for Catalan independence has shot up dramatically. Telling people they can't decide their own future and putting their backs against the wall is no way to win their favour.

    Had the Spanish acted sensibly like the Brits and Canadians then independence would have been defeated. I now think Catalan independence is far more likely than either Quebecois or Scottish independence is precisely because of the counter-productive oppression the Spanish are going for is backfiring.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  26. #56
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    https://www.ft.com/content/9d40c94e-...a-eda243196c2c

    Sir, It has been disappointing how recent events in Catalonia have been reported by the Financial Times. Your readership deserves more accuracy. On Tuesday, the Catalan referendum act was approved by the Catalan parliament without MPs being able to amend it (September 7). The warnings given by parliament’s counsel against passing such a bill were ignored. The ruling of the Catalan Council of Constitutional Guarantees declaring such a bill illegal was also disregarded. The actual bill breaches even Catalan statute law.

    More importantly, the Spanish Constitutional Court has already held that such a referendum process represents a material breach of the Spanish constitution. The referendum bill has been approved in a few hours when generally a bill of such importance would take weeks and even months of discussion in a normal parliament. The referendum is thus illegal and therefore neither valid nor binding.

    The Catalan process represents the end of the rule of law. Arbitrariness rules, as well as sheer disregard for the law. This has nothing to do with freedom, self-determination or human rights. This is Catalonia, a self-autonomous and prosperous Spanish region, not South Sudan or Kosovo. There is no majority of Catalans that support independence and polls keep suggesting a radical divide between supporters and detractors. It is wrong to talk about “the Catalan people” when less than 50 per cent support independence.

    Spain, like France or Italy, to name a few, not only recognises the unity of the country but also declares that national sovereignty rests on the people. This is the crux of the question. The current Catalan process may only be understood in the context of current populism across the world.

    It is about time that a clear picture is presented to FT readers.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
    — Bill Gates

  27. #57
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    If the Spanish were willing to cooperate and ensure a legal vote was held then it could be. Like in other democracies. What are the separatists supposed to do in your eyes when all legal avenues have been shut down?
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  28. #58
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    Right, let's have the "people" make irreversible decisions whenever they get angry at something completely unrelated (i.e. refugees). Then again, you supported Brexit.
    Hope is the denial of reality

  29. #59
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Brexit was decades in the making and all the bullshit lies spread against it have fallen flat on their faces so you'd think you'd show some humility at having called it so wrong.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  30. #60
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    Putting aside ethical considerations, the claims that this will not encourage secession elsewhere are overstated. Regardless of your thoughts on how Catalonian secession may or may not influence secession in other countries, it's reasonable to expect some impact on Spain. Or do you think this will be ignored by Basque nationalists and organizations like ETA?
    I should hope it would not be ignored! I would WANT it to be precedent. Let the Basques seek their freedom via ballots not bullets too. If a majority of Basques want their own nation they should have it.
    Aimless you've gone very quiet on this point. What have you got against the Basques seeking their freedom democratically rather than violently?
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    Being upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

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