Dr. Medulla wrote:So, let's say Scotland didn't call the referendum, but instead England and Wales did, and a majority there voted to kick Scotland out of the UK. Based on this reading of consent, Scotland would have no say over this even if it wanted to stay? It's a ridiculous scenario, I know, but it highlights a problem with that kind of unilateral decision-making premise—that is, the stronger partner(s) could chuck out the weaker ones or force concessions to maintain the relationship. The blue states decide they've had enough of the bullshit from Chicosippi, win a national vote on the issue, and get to kick it out of the union.
I don't think they do get a say. All parties have to have continual consent. Otherwise I think it is literally not consent. And that's why these large institutions of power are incredibly fucked up, because smaller associations can work through these sorts of things and mitigate damage while massive states are designed to be a no-win deal where everyone is forced into a non-consensual relationship.
The one on one example is two people who consent to have sexual relations with each other. Partway through whatever they're doing together, one party decided they don't want to consent to this action anymore. That's the end of the agreed upon relationship and the other party really, truly has no say in the matter.
When one group stops agreeing to being part of a relationship, it literally stops being consensual.
Anytime statism is perpetuated, you're creating a bad system with a lot of bad hypothetical consequences - so it is here. But allowing a majority of a self-defined group to self-govern if they see fit seems like the ideologically least-bad option in this case, and seems closest to the spirit of social contract theory (as a moral philosophy, not as a legal matter). Forcing a group of people to stay yoked to a system of power against their will seems a lot like tyranny to me.