Derrick Belcher claims to be a libertarian. If I could, I would get rid of the word “libertarian” because it is just a meaningless word that conservatives use. Sure, there are libertarians who hate the Republican Party as much or more than they hate the Democratic Party. But such people are very rare and with notable exceptions, hidden. So it is better to think of Derrick Belcher as a conservative and not the “absolute Libertarian” he calls himself.
He lives in Alabama and, like so many other conservative loons, he wants to secede from the union. The reason I know he is just another conservative is what he says about secession, “I don’t think any one state can stand alone. But if we’ve got 20 of them, then that starts to be something.” He means 20 red states, of course (more on that in a moment). “Libertarian” is not the first word that comes to mind when you think of Mississippi, Arkansas, and West Virginia. “Poor” might be the first word, given that they are the poorest states in the union.
But Belcher has an answer to that! “If you look at a map of the red states, we have all of the oil and we produce all of the food. We’re the ones that are carrying the rest of the nation.” You didn’t expect him to be right did you? Of the top six agricultural states, three of them are bright blue. And combined, they produce more food than the three red states. Of oil producing states, two of the top six are blue. Same for natural gas. And the same for coal. (Surprisingly, bright blue Illinois produces twice as much coal are red West Virginia.)
Of course, none of this really matters. Energy and food are transported. But I suspect that Belcher wants his new confederation of states to be truly independent. Good for him! And good luck to him, because it is a stupid idea as any economist will tell you.
What Mr. Belcher seems most upset about is that back in 2001, the government shut down his topless car wash. He said, “The government ripped my business away, and now they’re choking America to death with rules and regulations.” According to the article:
This is typical of conservatives. It is very frustrating to talk to conservatives about the Middle East because in their minds, there are only two kinds of people there: Israelis and Not Israelis. This is also true if you include India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. And here Belcher doesn’t seem to understand that there are different levels of government. They must all be the feds! It wasn’t the federal government which shut down his “nasty wash”; it was the state of Alabama.
The truth is, if Derrick Belcher were a libertarian as he claims, he would be worried that big liberty-killing laws would be enacted by the social conservatives in an independent Alabama. But that is doubtless not what this is all about. He said he is angry. And when a conservative is angry, they don’t really care if, say, they attack the wrong country. So what the hell: the state passed a law he doesn’t like; separate from the nation!
 In many ways, I am a very naive man. When I read he had a “topless car wash” I thought it was a car wash for convertibles. All of my readers are hereby on notice that this is charming and not pathetic! (BTW: the image above is from a “topless” car wash where they the bottom part of your car for free but charged $5 to do the top. So there!)