Living Blue In Texas

QAnon Conspiracies And Neo-Confederate Beliefs Behind Texit Movement

The Texit movement is a far-right Conservative movement, which couples well with conspiracies and racism.

A few months before the election a friend of mine, Edward H. Sebesta, who is an academic researcher and expert on the post-Civil War Confederate, told me that if Trump lost the election to be ready to see another rise in Texit, the Texas Secession movement. He was right. Soon after Trump’s loss, anti-American Republican, Kyle Biederman filed HB 1359, a bill for Texas to secede from America. Over the last few months, far-right-leaning Conservatives on social media have started using the hashtag #Texit, #HB1359, and trying to get others to join their cause.

But, where did this Texit movement come from?

When I was young, perhaps in the early or mid-90s, I remember my grandmother telling me about the Republic of Texas, which was the then secessionist movement. She told me how there was an entire movement of people who believed that Texas wasn’t part of America. She told me that they had cards to identify themselves with, but they had to hide those cards because if they were caught with them, they would get in trouble with the government. I didn’t think about that again until Rick Perry made a lot of noise about seceding about ten to fifteen years ago.

The rise of the Tea Party movement in Texas after Obama’s election, open the flood gates of Texas Conservatives who were ready to leave America.

The secessionist movement has been around at least 30 years.

Daniel Miller, the president of the Texas Nationalist Movement, spoke at the Orange County Republican Party a few weeks ago. Miller is the current face of the movement. His activism and marketing tactics have resonated with Conservatives, particularly on the VERY far-right. Trumpers and other extremists right now are still unhappy with Trump’s loss and are now easy recruits for other extreme political movements.

During his speech, Miller said that he had been working towards the Texas Nationalist Movement (TNM) since August 24, 1996.

That’s an awful specific day. Which got me wondering, what was going on in August 1996 that made Miller declare this his life work?

Texas Republic Magazine.

Edward Sebesta shared some of his research with me regarding the Texas Nationalist Movement. Part of that included information on Texas Republic Magazine. Here is what he said:

“Texas Republic magazine was a series of fourteen issues starting with a Nov. – Dec. 1993 issue, and ending with a summer 1996 issue. It billed itself as “The Conservative Voice of the Lone Star State,” which given that many notable Texas conservatives and Republicans were involved seems to be a reasonable claim. It was NOT a publication of the Republic of Texas movement. And it was also a publication which had a special double issue, Nov.-Dec. 1995 which had as the cover article, “The State of Texas at 150: Was Annexation a Big Mistake.” It was published by the Landrum Society with a mailing address in Dallas, Texas on Irving Blvd. near the Hilton Anatole.”

Edward H. Sebesta

It’s interesting that the last publication of this magazine was in summer 1996, the same time that Daniel Miller began working towards TNM.

“The first issue was dedicated to M.E. Bradford (1934-1993) as a “Scholar, Patriot, Comrade, Friend.” M.E. Bradford was a leading figure of the modern neo-Confederate movement, a never-ending opponent of civil rights, campaigner for George Wallace for president, and notable for his denunciations of Abraham Lincoln. He contributed a series of articles for Southern Partisan magazine. The author has read through almost all his works and Bradford was pretentious.”

Edward H. Sebesta

I have sifted through a ton of Daniel Miller’s interviews and writing and I have been unable to find any incident of him telling us the exact reason why he chose this path. Was it the musings of this mid-90s publication or something else?

According to a 2009 Texas Monthly article, the Texas Nationalist Movement is an off-shoot of the Republic of Texas Movement.

The Republic of Texas.

It’s important to note, while the Texas Monthly article cited Daniel Miller as wanting to separate TNM from the Republic of Texas, because of the violence committed by the Republic of Texas, it didn’t say TNM separated themselves from the ideology.

What violence, you ask? This specifically:

In 1996, a man name Richard McLaren was the ambassador of the Republic of Texas (ROT) and was making a name of himself as the face of the secessionist movement. Then, in April 1997, federal authorities arrested two members of ROT for illegal weapons charges and contempt of court.

In retaliation, McLaren went next door and kidnapped two of his neighbors, which led to a long standoff with the FBI. At the time, many feared another Waco-incident. Eventually, McLaren surrendered.

McLaren in still in prison, today. Although 67 years old, he isn’t scheduled to be released for another 20 years.

While the then president of the ROT denounced McLaren’s violence, the messages that went out to the members of the ROT tell a different story.

These violent incidents are the reason Daniel Miller wanted to separate the Texas Nationalist Movement from the Republic of Texas.

However, it’s important to note, that the Republic of Texas is still in existence today.

These people are completely batshit crazy. It’s basically a bunch of old white guys, (when I say old, think the silent generation), who believe they are the president, congress, and other roles of their own country, called the Republic of Texas. Here is one of their recent congressional meetings.

If Daniel Miller and the Texas Nationalist Movement were successful in seceding, how would the new government be set up? Would Daniel Miller be the default president? Would they give the presidency to Greg Abbott? Or would they just install the president of the Republic of Texas? (His name is Billy D. Ford, if you were wondering.)

While TNM puts out plenty of information about Texit, they haven’t published anywhere about the structure of government they would like to install.

Yet, the Trump cultists are still eating it up.

Unable to find any other reference to Daniel Miller’s epiphany moment on August 24, 1996, or any publication which spoke about their intended government structure, I tried looking into Miller’s background. It is likely a true statement that Miller tried to separate himself from the violent reputation of the Republic of Texas because prior to about 2009/2010 it’s almost as if he didn’t exist at all.

Turns out, Daniel isn’t even his name. He was born on November 24, 1971, in Dallas, Texas. His parents, Dial and Betty Miller named him Danny Ray Miller.

November 24, 1971 Texas birth index records

Maybe you don’t think that’s a big deal. His parents named him Danny, not Daniel, yet he calls himself Daniel. Perhaps he wanted his name to seem more sophisticated. However, it definitely shows that he has tried to maintain a certain image, not just surrounding TNM, but also for himself.

The about me section on Miller’s personal website said he’s from Northeast Texas but doesn’t list a city or county. Then from a 2009 Star-Telegram article, Miller was quoted saying that his civic involvement started when he would accompany his father, an ironworker, to the picket line. In the early referenced 2009 Texas Monthly article, Miller called his father a union steelworker and lifelong Democrat.

Why lie?

From Miller’s parents 2002 50th anniversary announcement, Miller’s father was a retired post office worker. At the post office, sure, he was probably in a union, but he also worked for the United States Federal Government.

These seem like little lies, he tells people his name is Daniel when it’s actually Danny. He tells people his dad was an ironworker when he was actually a post office worker.

Is it all about maintaining his image? Or is there more to the story?

Daniel Miller also claims that the current Texas Nationalist Movement is bipartisan, and uses his dad’s lifelong voting history as an example. It’s important to point out that Miller was a late-in-life baby for his parents, who were Texas Democrats in the 1950s and 1960s, which means they were actually Dixiecrats or Shivercrats and were definitely Conservative.

So what if Daniel Miller is telling small little lies for the sake of his image? It’s not like he’s hurting anyone.

If Daniel Miller is the face of the Texas Nationalist Movement. Who’s behind him?

TNM just launched a PAC a few months ago, and we don’t have a list of donors yet. Up until they started the PAC, the only reports regarding their funding are from the memberships they sell and from Russia. Yes, they have received funding from Russia.

The TNM website lists all of its executives. More important, they list their Advisory Board members. If you didn’t know, an advisory board advises the executives on policy, strategy, and implementation.

Let’s take a look at who the advisory board is.

Dr. Jack Reynolds – Economic Policy Advisor.

Dr. Jack Reynolds is an economics instructor at Tarrant County College. He can be found on Twitter, where he has stated some interesting opinions.

Like this one, where he blamed the overly-debunked cause of the recent power outages on wind and solar, citing how we had plenty of fossil fuels.

However, I couldn’t find anything he wrote in response to the cancer-clusters or environmental racism taking place in the Houston area, caused by the oil and gas industry.

However, he’s the economic policy advisor, so lying about oil and gas doesn’t matter. Right? What are his economic views? For one, he thinks income inequality is a myth. This is wrong, income inequality has been on the rise for decades in Texas and the racial wealth gap is staggering. There are countless studies that prove Texas has one of the highest racial wealth gaps in the nation.

Dr. Reynolds is also a staunch defender of capitalism. Despite all modern evidence linking capitalism to racism.

Dr. Reynolds also hasn’t been shy about sharing Q-Conspiracy theories.

As seen in this November 30, 2020, both deny the mountains of evidence regarding Trump’s crimes with Russia and claim there was evidence of voter fraud in 2020. That tweet was like a two-for.

He also retweeted Lin Wood and #StopTheSteal multiple times.

Like I said, check out his Twitter, it’s full of plenty of cringe-worthy tweets.

It’s important to stress that, Dr. Reynolds, who has advocated for fossil fuels, calls income inequality a myth, defends capitalism, and is a QAnon conspiracy theorist, is the person advising the Texas Nationalist Movement on economic policy.

David Thomas Roberts – Political Advisor.

According to his bio on Defiance Press, David Thomas Roberts is a conservative and libertarian activist, a staunch defender of capitalisms, and he lives on a 650-acre ranch.

The 650-acre ranch is Texas talk for “he has a lot of money.” But, that’s not important, he’s the political advisor. So, what are his politics?

He’s written multiple books on the “deep state” and the “socialist destruction of capitalism.” You can save yourself the $12.99 buying one of his books though, because he was nice enough to put all of his political ideology on Twitter, too. Check out his Twitter profile picture.

It’s only funny, if you think it’s funny.

He Tweeted “Happy Texas Confederate Heroes Day,” and then tagged the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV). Yep, the same SCV that used to partner up with the Ku Klux Klan.

Yep, the same SCV who sent their armed members out to peaceful protests to harass, intimidate, and assault Black people.

Knowing that Roberts supports the Confederacy, do we need to know anything else about his political ideology?

He spends a lot of time on Twitter bullying Republicans. Actually, I do, too. Funny to have something in common with this wack-job, but in my defense, I only bully them because of their far-right political ideals. (Except Drew Springer and Justin Holland. I’m nice to them most of the time.)

Roberts bullies Republicans online because they aren’t far enough right. How far-right do you have to be, to be further right of Texas Republicans?

So far right, that you still celebrate the Confederacy.

In fact, his Twitter feed showed a more interest focus on Republicans than Democrats. Aside from Republicans and Biden, he only targets and bullies people of color.

Racist? Make that decision for yourself.

Aside from his anger at a fictional Antifa, a civil rights group that says the lives of Black people matter, and BIPOC politicians and celebrities, David Thomas Roberts also spent an exorbitant amount of time tweeting QAnon conspiracies regarding Trump and the election. All of it on his Twitter account.

The Texas Nationalist Movement’s political advisor is someone who holds Neo-Confederate and QAnon beliefs. He’s not shy about letting everyone know, either.

George Konstantinidis – Global Exit Advisor.

George Konstantinidis is a British guy who was heavily involved in Brexit. He was also a Regional Party Chairman for the UK Independence Party (UKIP). UKIP is England’s far-right populous party. Think Trumpism, with an English accent. UKIP has long been branded a racist party by some and in recent years had a scandal over racist text messages regarding Meghan Markle.

I wasn’t able to pull up much on Konstantinidis, he has a Twitter account, but mainly only talks about Brexit.

Claver Kamau-Imani – Chief Advisor to the President.

It’s unclear if Claver Kamau-Imani is the chief advisor to the president of TNM (Daniel Miller), the president of the Republic of Texas (Billy D. Ford), or the future president of Texas after it secedes.

What does the advisor to the president do?

He goes on YouTube to make sure that everyone knows that the Texas Nationalist Movement isn’t racist, because “look at me.”

In the video above, after Kamau-Imani’s “look at me” rant, he then equated 1960s Conservative white Democrats to a post-Southern Strategy multi-cultural Progressive Democrats. So, yeah…

He also has a Twitter. Here are some of his tweets.

Dr. Matt Robinson – Education Advisor.

Wait, does Dr. Robinson look familiar to you? He looks familiar to me, but I can’t place it.

Oh yeah, that’s right.

That’s State Board of Education member, District Seven, Dr. Matt Robinson.

Does anyone else find it a little unsettling that this SBOE member has teamed up with the Texit Neo-Confederates and QAnon conspiracy theorists?

How can Dr. Robinson be trusted to make decisions for what goes in our student’s textbooks if he is involved in such an absurd movement?

Dr. Robinson is up for reelection in 2022. Let’s make sure he doesn’t get reelected. How did he even get elected in the first place, anyway? He’s a urologist, not a teacher or academic.

Dr. Robinson has a Facebook page, but we aren’t going to call it “Matt Robinson’s Facebook page.” Instead, we’re going to call it, “white people laughing.”

While Daniel Miller presents himself as the face and image of the Texit movement, the drive behind Texit appears to be dark and sinister.

If Texit was successful, what would happen to the 13% of Texas’ Black population? Racism is thriving in Texas. From the school board meetings in Southlake, to verified racism on the Austin police force, to racial profiling in rural Texas, and racist fight songs in our Texas colleges. And, let’s not forget Texas’ long history with voter suppression and civil rights infringements.

What would happen to the 4 million Black people, who call Texas home, if a historically racist state with a Neo-Confederate and QAnon agenda was able to break away from federal civil rights protection?

Likely, nothing good. And what about the 12 million Hispanic-Latino Texans? What would happen to them?

And the 5.2 million people who voted for Democrats in the last election?

If Texit was successful, millions of people would suddenly be thrust into a far-right authoritarian country, where rich, white men were able to exploit the poor and people of color. Forget healthcare, forget a living wage, forget clean air. None of that would happen in a Texit world.

Of course, the Texas Nationalist Movement doesn’t tell you all of this upfront. Instead, they use dog whistles and focus their marketing on the Trump base.

What does the Texas Nationalist Movement say?

A review of the Texas secessionist movement from Edward H. Sebesta.

What is the ideology driving the Texas Nationalist Movement is indicated by their webpage “Why Texas Independence?” They give as the reasons the following: The reasons for Texas independence are clear and simple. The people of Texas believe that Texans are best governed by Texans. We are no longer willing to be subjected to policies that we don’t want by people that we don’t elect.

In all cases of representative democracy there are representatives that you didn’t elect and they will pass legislation. This “logic” would say that each county of Texas should secede since they are being governed by those they didn’t elect, and then in each county further division could be made. The logical fallacy of this reasoning would eventually mean a republic with one representative of one district since if there was more than one district and more one representative there would be someone “we” didn’t elect in the governing body.

However, the web page gives “highlights” which lists more specifically what they want and complaints they have with the Federal government. They want, “A secure border and a sane immigration policy,” which is explained to avoid “the path of national suicide” and that without secession “… we will continue to be a participant in our own demise.” How people moving to your country and increasing the population is “suicide” or would result in a “demise” isn’t explained. Does the Texas Nationalist Movement think that some immigrants are going to slaughter the current residents of Texas? To the author of this review (Edward H. Sebesta) what is being talked about is the loss of control by a conservative white demographic of the Texas population.

Loss of control by a conservative white demographic is a tale as old as time.

More from Edward H. Sebesta.

“A sound monetary policy based on real value,” and which implies that they see the current border as insecure and current immigration policy as not being sane. What “real value” refers to isn’t clear, but perhaps a currency based on gold, silver or some other commodity. There isn’t a further elaboration on the web page.

Another “highlight” is that they see the “… siphoning of Texans’ hard-earned money by D.C. bureaucrats,” implying that Texas is economically exploited. The web page claims that for every dollar Texans send to the federal government they get back $.83. They reject “… the fuzzy math often applied by article contributors outside of Texas…” that doesn’t agree with their assessment. Some American states are really poor and probably do take in more money than they pay out and most Americans aren’t ready to leave other Americans to suffer on their own. This position does give a dark omen what life would be under Texas government. Certainly some counties now pay more to the Texas state government than they take in. With Texas secession will each county be left to its own fate?

The TMN Facebook page on 7/20/2016 condemn the federal courts for overturning what appears to be a state voter law stating “Yet again an unelected Federal bureaucrat has overturned a law that protects voter integrity,” and had a picture of a frowning judge with a gavel. A judge is of course not a bureaucrat by any normal understanding of the word but is nominated by the federal executive and confirmed by the U.S. Senate with the full intention that jurisprudence not be swayed by public opinion. It gives some insight as to what type of judiciary the TMN would have if successful.

Ominous, indeed.

Besides short items at the website in assertion that Texas would benefit greatly by becoming an independent nation, there aren’t detailed position papers or much explanation how the Texas national government would work.

More ominously is an assertion at Facebook page, Texas nationalist movement, Central Texas Representatives,” which asserts on Sept. 21, 2016 that “The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decisions but by iron and blood.”13 According to the about page for the group they are a separate entity, but their photo for their page has the TNM logo with a link to the TNM website and most of the items posted are TNM website postings either to the current website or to what seems to be the prior website http://www.texnat.org.

Another Facebook page for “Team San Antonio For Texas Nationalist Movement,” which uses a TNM logo for their Facebook page photo, has an image posted on Sept. 27, 2016, “Illegals Before Secession/Illegals After Secession,” where the before photo is a room full of Hispanics sitting on chairs and faces blurred, and after jail cells jammed with Hispanics.14 Most of the postings are from the TNM website, but it can’t be determined what the association of this group is with the TNM.

Do Conservatives know the truth about Texit? Do they care?

Danny Ray Miller changed his name to Daniel, he made up a story about his father being an ironworker, instead of an employee of the federal government, and he spent decades working on the image of the secessionist movement and himself. Now that Conservatives have been brainwashed by QAnon, they’re low-hanging fruit for those who want to grow a far-right extremism movement. In recent years, memberships to racist groups like the 3%ers and the Proud Boys are up, just as membership to Texit is up.

Over the last decade, most of us have watched our family and neighbors become completely disassociated with reality. They have been fed a constant stream of lies by right-wing media and believe the lies that align with their biases, even when presented the truth. Maybe they all know that the driving forces behind Texit are QAnon and Neo-Confederate believers. Maybe they just don’t care, because it already aligns with their biases.

Confront them with the truth, whenever you can.

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