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Nationalism is in the air these days. (That and the surely virus-infected spittle of the unmasked woman clearly standing over the yellow line behind me at the supermarket yesterday, but I’m not one to worry.) I’m not here to contribute to the extensive debate on whether that’s a good or bad thing. I only mean to suggest that it may have given some the erroneous impression that not only may borders be a good thing per se, but that the current ones are necessarily as well-drawn as they could be; in other words that we somehow landed on a good batch of countries, when some clearly aren’t worth the effort of keeping around anymore. I offer this not as an exhaustive list but only a few preliminary nominations.
5.) Greece: This country is a lie. I have no problem with the Greeks except that they’re not Greeks. Mainland Greece was largely depopulated in the early Middle Ages, its unbroken connection to the classical civilization like so many national myths an invention of 19th century romantic folderol, and repopulated by Greek-speaking Romans from Anatolia and the capital. The modern Greeks are not Hellenes as they call themselves but Romanoi. And none of this phony getting along with the Turks either. No one’s buying it. Rename the country the Eastern Roman Empire and get busy retaking Constantinople. Rest not until mass is heard once again under the domes of the Hagia Sophia.
4.) Ireland: I’m sorry Michael Brendan Dougherty but this is a preposterous country. Celtic language and culture, which I believe amounted to a few rocks piled atop a clump of moss, were eradicated and replaced by a variant of English culture. Cry into our Guinnesses about it we may, but it’s true and it means that modern Ireland is little more than an angsty British teenager run away from home. Even Irish Catholicism which once offered a moral rationale for independence has given way to vapid secularism, something that should make the emerald isle more than at home in today’s UK, which it should grow up and rejoin.
3.) Thailand: This country was the only kingdom in Asia not to fall under the sway of European imperial powers. Today it is a tourist destination for those who wish to engage in deviant sexual practices not tolerated by modern western society. Surprisingly that turns out to be a positive, non-fractional number of deviant sexual practices. Also, the Thai King just went into isolation with his harem, because he has a harem and can do that. That colonial bucket list and its last unchecked box are surely waiting under a dusty pith helmet somewhere.
2.) Cuba: It’s been recognized since the early republic that Cuba is a natural American possession. More than that, it should be a subject of national shame that we’ve allowed a totalitarian Communist state to exist off the coast of Florida for so long after the Cold War. Say what you will about NATO and the EU but the most successful post-communist societies are found in the Baltic states who quickly integrated into a larger geopolitical entity. The truth is that the wounds left by decades of forced collectivism don’t heal by themselves. Those who’ve gone it alone have largely either backslid or foundered on the rocks of pent-up ethnic tensions. When the Castros fall, leave things to us; we’ll know who to hang.
1.) Canada: This perfidious maple empire has really no reason to exist other than priggish anti-Americanism. There is no Canadian idea or Canadian national mission. With the rigorous application of rulers to knuckles those “ay”s and “aboot”s could be excised from the dialect as well, leaving a reasonable approximation of American English. The Quebecois should go their own way while the English speaking provinces break up, leaving them free to apply for statehood in the order that they get over themselves. Good riddance to bad poutine.Published in