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Breakingviews: Secession fever

Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - 03:05

What happens in Scotland may not stay in Scotland. Rob Cox and Reynolds Holding discuss how the creation of a prosperous new nation may embolden secessionists across the pond.

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It's accepted wisdom on Wall Street. That carving up bloated companies is a good thing while on the eve of Scotland's historic vote on independence. We've been thinking about whether the same economic argument could be made. For countries. Rob Cox you've learned of columnists were right that defined well I mean look I mean the arguments that the philosophical underpinnings for for many of these independence movements and developed world are. But our governments are no longer response that people like they're bloated they cost too much all those kinds of things. I mean Scotland is slightly different they are you know they've been lot of political -- lot of cultural you say with Catalonia Spain. But I thought but -- it if that's similar to sort of the arguments we hear an activist investors or shareholders that they say -- companies not responsive to. Customers that responses to shareholders not responsive to marketplace. Well and that's actually proving quite true I mean you've seen so many examples where. Companies that spun off divisions -- -- up. And the companies are better managed more accountability in the last five years yes sure -- -- like -- like get out of it and you know according talked with Davis millennium British citizen facility. Why can't take the same argument to cut two countries and that sort of that was sort of it was a thought experiment right. And you certainly can't because the arguments are very similar -- but of course the dynamics are very. You know you don't well Villa in might be revolutionary in that shareholding of Fortune Brands and it's hard to see how you can. It perform that function for for our country but. If you take -- it to it's logical these certain conclusion that you can actually make it's and there are people actually out there in the US are examples that are thinking this way -- and don't tell us a little I talk -- -- -- this thing called them Montpelier manifesto view from on the sections of Vermont you know -- signed a few years ago you know and these you know these folks are quite emboldened by what's happening obviously in Scotland and what may happen. Catalonia in November. -- and they see that the arguments in the United States for session. Are there are a different they're not cultural in the same way that they are running -- -- color -- are with saint -- it was an independent country until 77 -- Right so so but the the the economic underpinnings are that they arguments that make -- kind of persuasive. Particularly in some of the states Vermont maybe that's let. Some of the states that aren't you in net payers and to the federal system. And would actually be able to hopeful some of that back but there but look at me in the United States is still pretty united. People don't see you know but once people start to think about the lack of responsiveness the failure of congress to active. Do the things that you want as you see people -- and their faith institutions. And credibility in your government institutions are rented. He wouldn't surprise me to see. Particularly if you see an independent Catalonia and independent Scotland and -- we'll see what happens there but the -- I don't know maybe it's an idea that catches on. Will lobby looking at that story as well as others at breaking news in the mean time stay tuned for more breaking news. Tomorrow.

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Breakingviews: Secession fever

Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - 03:05