Or just cry, you silly sore losers. The spate of secessionist petitions shows mostly that Republicans are sore losers (and some other folks, too). When we speak of contagion/diffusion--how do things spread, and the claim is made that secessionism might be contagious, we need to be about what it is we are seeing right now: an online petition. Which is a long ways away from being a secessionist movement, which is a long ways away from being a real political entity with any relevance.
There has been a long-lasting separatist campaign in Texas by a small group of folks. How do we know not to take them seriously? Their embassy is a trailer .... in Texas. If you are going to secede, then the embassy needs to go outside one's territory, right?
Anyhow, not only have I studied secession--the causes and the international relations of--but I have lived in Texas and in Quebec, so I have both scholarly and real life experience with secession. What we see here is nothing more than a small percentage of folks (as in under 1% if the link above is correct) doing the very absolute minimum. That is, they don't have to leave their couches and they are exposed to no risk.
So, let's pour some perspective sauce on all of this. Quebec has been pursuing secession for the past thirty-five years or so,
and are not getting much closer. The Quebeckers at least have the advantage of a real identity divide--language. And with heaps of institutional support. The US is still run for and by white folks, white Christian folks, and
Obama's election just means that minorities had their say. The reality is that the internet, when combined with a media that needed to fill some time on its 24 hour networks (until the Petraeus mess hit the waves), amplifies all of this--but, to quote that Shakespeare guy, it is sound and fury signifying nothing. I will let you folks consider who the idiot is in all of this.