These thoughts started out as comments at Skeptical Eye but opted instead to add to my post tally here:
It is interesting to entertain the thought that it would lead to more competition. Italy peaked as a society when it wasn't unified but warring city-states. Ancient Greece as well. To a certain extent, same with Germany. We tend to forget that Europe is BUT an amalgamation of regions who still remain independent at heart. Sicily, Gallicia, Catalonia, Flanders, the Walloons, etc.
Your views on secession will be influenced and determined very much by how your personal political views fit into your georgrapical and cultural environment. I'm sure a liberal in Texas isn't too keen on that possibility. They can point to certain aspects of Texan values and beliefs they believe don't merit independence. Same with an English-speaking, non-Francophone living in Quebec who wants no part of Quebec independence even though they intellectually can grasp that too much centralized power in a massive country isn't necessarily a good thing. It's just that the people pushing Quebec independence aren't a good alternative.
About example of societies that employed the anarcho-capitalist model:
The one thing that's strange, perhaps weak, is using Iceland in the Middle-Ages as an example for anarcho-capitalism success.
Not to disparage Iceland, but I think we need more substantial examples.
Personally, we spend too much time looking for examples. If the idea has merit, try it. Especially in light of the utter unimaginative and redundant recycled ideas pimped about these days.
The argument used by the left asking what's the alternative to the state - a valid question - needs to be deconstructed piece by piece.
Moreover, it's worth reminding that, as a whole, those who think along libertarian (except for the hard core ones who I fear may not be practical) lines DO NOT called for the dismantling of the state acknowledging it is necessary on some level.
It's funny. Liberals believe or think that if there's no state to enforce laws or protect rights, man is doomed.
Yet, look around you. Government breathes life into entities that don't serve the people all the time. If anything, they do a good job (for a myriad of reasons: To keep their jobs, votes, apathy, money, naivete, etc.)of coddling the very people who have designs against the people.
Corruption continues. And some of the corruption we see is fixable.
Sometimes it's worse than it should be because the state often protects criminals. The people they purport to be protecting aren't protected at all but rather serve as convenient scapegoats and/or pawns.
Just study illegal betting and fixed matches in soccer globally. None of those yahoos succeed without the help of a major political figure on some level.
We should be willing to tinker with things. Big and bigger government is not feasible and as far as I'm concerned, we're fools to think more government can fix things the government messed up in the first place.