There’s now a petition on whitehouse.gov asking that Iowa be allowed to, peacefully, secede from the union and form a new government. Yup. As of this writing, the petition, created by the mysterious “Frank C,” had received roughly 1,800 signatures, many from outside Iowa. Not sure how to take that. If the petition gets 23,710 signatures by Dec. 12, the White House will ”review it, ensure it’s sent to the appropriate policy experts, and issue an official response.” Your request to dissolve the union will be addressed in the order in which it was received. Please hold. Secession petitions from a number of states have been piling up online since President Obama won re-election. I guess if his opponents couldn’t “take back the country” with votes, a few have decided that the patriotic response is to form a new one. On a sour grapes scale, from weak purple Kool Aide to fortified wine, secession is a big ‘oil jug of Thunderbird. Maybe, in time, folks will sober up. On the one hand, this is no laughing matter. On the other hand, it is a hilarious joke. And after the campaign we just endured, I’m going with hand No. 2. To paraphrase the wise, but poorly chosen, words a state lawmaker once uttered, we must grasp the levity of this situation. It’s easy to dismiss secession as nuts. And I will. But let’s not be hasty. Our new nation, The Republic of Iowa, might have its upsides. Gov. Terry Branstad would look very sharp in a snappy military uniform, lots of gold braid, big hat, reviewing the troops at the Iowa Day parade. You think the Iowa-Iowa State football game is big now? What if it was for the national championship? Every year? Final four? Iowa, Iowa State, UNI and Drake are a lock from now on. Our secretary of state, Matt Schultz, can stop scouring the state for voter fraud and start opening embassies and negotiating treaties. We could join up with Idaho and Ohio, forming the “Axis of Places with Names that Occasionally Get Mixed Up.” Don’t mess with Idohiowa. Just think of the economic stimulus we’d get building those high walls, border checkpoints, a navy, etc. Our immigration policy would be strict, unless you’re visiting one of our casinos. Secession would hurt tourism, you say? Well, we could become a monarchy. People love all that royal stuff. Or, we could petition France to rescind the Louisiana Purchase and take us back. Lots of Americans want to visit France. So we bring France over here. Des Moines? Ooh la la. We could even create new states within the ROI. Iowa City could be the capital of Hawktopia. Northeast Iowa could become Dubec. Iowa’s west coast becomes Farmafornia. Other ideas? Siouxlandia? Corridoria? Hogasota? North Misery? Nah. Forget it. It’s nuts. Sorry, Frank C.