The problem was, and still is, how one believes the wording works. Words are like eggs, you can scramble em, fry em, toss em and they all look different even if they have the same spelling. Comprehension is in the human mind. When one makes up their mind that one issue, or 'new idea' is the greatest thing since Carver made peanut butter they can make one who does not see it that way so disgusted they take themself away from the source of contention. That is what South Carolina did. They were really, from the way I understand it, NOT looking for a gaggle of states to follow. They were just concerned with their own concern. All of a sudden, the fever spread, the tempers flared and then------the fight started.
If the other states had NOT gotten into a frenzy and undid their part of the union, could South Carolina have made it work? Maybe for a while. If it sounds good, looks good and the price seems good, you better do some real serious digging before stepping into that box. It could contain some very sticky, messy, smelly stuff. They had what I'd say was a legitimate gripe and I can see their point. I do not see how they could have existed surrounded by those they snubbed without being a pandora's box that would have been opened in a short period of time. They did have the coast so they could have still had trade but at what cost? What goods they would have needed that would be imported over the borders from their neighbors and former partners may begin to be over priced and in short supply. And, in all of that, they'd have to have sharpstooters aiming at those chicken hawks flying overhead.
There are comparisons in other areas of the world and we've read of their success or lack of it. Some did make it work. Switzerland is about the best example I can think of off hand.
The Unon that all 13 colonies entered into, when the first fight began, was for a single purpose. Some, who were leaders in that movement, were really thinking it was just going to send the Mother Land a message that their Mother should pay attention to what those 'children' were saying. Once the smoke cleared, it was quite clear to some of the smarter leaders that there had to be some 'rules' put down on paper and agreed to by all that provided for the continued safety of that new Union of States. What caused some trouble down the road was that some issues were in that constitution that had a different meaning to a few of the new states. It took a while for them to figure that out. The Founders who took such great pains and pretty much left their 'real' life to work on that paper thought they had all bases covered. South Carolina thought they'd found a loophole and not just that, they thought they could just decide to drop their membership. It took the actions of South Carolina and the others who followed to show just what was 'unclear' and the head of the Union did not agree with their interpretation. That is still an argument that is being replayed on issues of today.
So, now I'll shut up. We still see the view point for the chicken and the view from the egg. I'll call it a draw. The lesson learned ---do not test it. At least with a head of state and cabinet who are dead set against anyone who wishes to challange Union membership. Funny how the 'head' of the Union had no problem sending soldiers with real guns to invade the former member who stopped paying their dues. Was 'that' Constitutional? Jury's still out on that one. That means, the chicken/egg argument is still not proven. It all comes down to how one views it.