The government in exile, not in exile at all.

Today’s NYT has a fascinating article ( about a protest group in Texas which claims that the Texas Republic never actually joined the US (on grounds not explained in the article) and that they are exercising the legitimate powers of the government of the Texas Republic by doing things like sending letters to local judges demanding, in the name of the government, that the judges legitimize their authority to make decisions.

The article describes the US and Texas-state authorities as being generally tolerant of these people. “They’re a harmless, clueless, and interesting group of generally nice older guys with too much time on their hands”, says one former state official; “I don’t have a problem with this group, but when they do things that violate the laws of this state, then I have to take action”, says another.

I do not believe that the authorities would be as tolerant if this were a group of old hispanics who maintained that Texas’ secession from Mexico, and the treaty which ended the war over that, were fundamentally invalid, and that therefore the Texas Republic had never existed and the territory was still a province of Mexico, and that they were exercising the powers of the legitimate provincial government.

This is unprovable, of course – a hypothetical which may say more about my judgment of Texas authorities than it does the Texas authorities themselves.

And yet.


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