After reading Tom Tancredo’s encouraging piece 5 reasons Obama will lose in November,” I conducted a “what if” thought experiment. What if the November 2012 election doesn’t really bring true change in Washington?

It doesn’t take a political scientist with the IQ of Einstein to conclude that if the American people wake up on Nov. 7, 2012, to find Barack Obama re-elected as president and the political calculus of the Congress more or less unchanged, the United States could be facing a volatile situation because our nation is now more ideologically divided than at any time since the Civil War. The philosophical disagreements between opposing political factions today are as profound as those which, 150 years ago, separated the United States into two intensely hostile camps – one pro-slavery, the other anti-slavery.

As background, in 1860, the Democratic Party was united as the pro-slavery faction. Nothing much has changed in that respect, except the particulars. Recast today as “liberal” or “progressive,” the Democratic Party is the overseer, a tireless advocate of an increasingly oppressive big government “plantation” system joined at the hip to Big Brother and rogue military adventurism. Cut from the same party cloth are their historical disciples of bigger government and more centralized control of states and individuals: Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, Lyndon Johnson and now Barack Hussein Obama. Coincidentally, three of these presidents are associated with arguably unjustified wars and military adventures that made the world worse, not better.

The Republican Party in 1860, with Abraham Lincoln the standard bearer, coalesced as the anti-slavery faction. Today, Republicans are divided, although their en bloc opposition to Obamacare, linchpin of big-government plantationism, sharply separates them from Democrats. Under the Republican tent, there are factions with visceral differences, often constitutionally based, as to the proper role of the federal government in the lives of Americans and in the world at large. Some Republicans, like some Democrats, are warmongers and glowering Big Brother statists. Sen. John McCain and his ilk come to mind. Others are closet big-government liberals and disguised statists – Sen. Richard Lugar and his ilk, for example. Then there is the powerful tea-party faction and numerous sympathizers and, not to forget, the millions of young people of no strong political affiliation catching the fever of liberty from Ron Paul.

There are many political wild cards that might come into play if Tom Tancredo’s encouraging prediction falls short and the American people wake up to find Barack Obama re-elected as president and the political calculus of the Congress not significantly changed. Given that scenario, a betting person couldn’t rule out a surprising number of states, powered by waves of grassroots citizen discontent, seeking ways to disengage from a federal union increasingly antagonistic to the interests, aspirations and liberties of a free people.

William Gresham

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