Catalonia and common sense

Source: EconLog
by Alberto Mingardi

“[W]e need to come to grips with a sad but true fact. This sad but true fact is that the reasons for which libertarians are enthusiastic about secession are not necessarily the reasons why people support it. … In this political conflict, overarching ideological buzzwords are being generously and emphatically used on both sides, but people are driven by quite different reasons. It may well be that you have always disliked your neighbour, and now you got a chance to take at him, because he belongs to a different ethnic/religious/political group than yours. The more we move away from a peaceful debate over independence to something that resembles civil war (which I hope it is not going to happen), these motivations are going to play a bigger and bigger part. People are not very likely to risk their life and their property for a reward so vague to them as Catalonia being independent: but they might to grab someone else’s property, or to take vengeance against what they consider unjustly privileged classes, or just to get rid of people they deem inferior or hostile.” (11/03/17)