Left vs. White

Watching the Republican National Convention was a little like being lost in an Alaskan snowstorm: I was blinded by the unbearable whiteness of being a Republican delegate. It was surprising, therefore, to find out that the delegates were even whiter than they appeared on TV. It seems the camera not only adds ten pounds, it also increases the amount of melanin in the room.

<

p>

cite: 1, 2, 3 Democrats Republicans National Average
White 57% 93% 74%
Black 25% 2% 13%
Latino 12% 5% 15%
Asian 5% ~0% ? 4%
Male 50% 68% ~50%

While 44% of all delegates at the DNC were minorities, this was true for only 7% of RNC delegates. In fact, this was one of the whitest RNC conventions in decades, pretty much since Black Americans effectively regained the franchise:

Only 36 of the 2,380 delegates seated on the convention floor are black, the lowest number since the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies began tracking diversity at political conventions 40 years ago [Link]

This was a big shift from 2000 and 2004, when the Bush campaign successfully reached out strongly to Black and Latino voters. The absence of Latino voters was particularly striking, probably because Latino activists have been driven out of the party grassroots that constitute the delegates by the rancor over immigration.

The party has also made a concerted effort to court Hispanics, but its electoral gains have been diminished by the hard-line stance many Republicans have taken on immigration… 5 percent of delegates are Hispanic, the lowest percentage at a Republican convention since 1996 [Link]

McCain’s own campaign manager said:

“We have to make a better case to the Hispanic voter that the Republican Party has something to offer other than a deportation slip,” [Link]

And while I was unable to find any figures on Asians at the Republican convention, the numbers leave little room for Asian delegates unless in very small number.

<

p>

Note that neither party does a good job of representing the American people as they are today. Democrats over represent Blacks and under represent Whites, the Republicans do the opposite. It’s only with Latino delegates that the Democrats come close to parity and the Republicans are far off. These differences may represent differences in party membership overall.

However, when you look ahead, the Democrats do a far better job of representing America of the future:

The Census Bureau reported last month that racial and ethnic minorities will make up a majority of the country’s population by 2042 – almost a decade earlier than what the bureau predicted just four years ago. [Link]

The difference in minority representation in part emerges from a deliberate difference in approach – the Democrats set diversity goals and the Republics let local parties choose whoever the wish:

Nelson Warfield, a Republican consultant, pointed out that Democratic Party rules called for race- and gender-based numerical goals for state delegations, a factor that most likely contributed to the greater minority presence at the Denver event. “The Republicans,” Mr. Warfield said, “trust delegates to represent the interests of all people more than Democrats do with their quotas.” [Link]

However, these differences are not just a product of ideology. Compare the 2008 convention to the more diverse 2000 and 2004 conventions held under the same rules with the same ideology. This year the core of the party is experiencing a nativist reaction and the convention reflects that. Related is the fact that there are few minority Republican elected officials, so the automatic delegates were also very white this year as well.

I’d like to say that the RNC delegates reflect America of yesterday, but that wouldn’t be true – America has never in its history been 93% White, except perhaps on TV. Instead, I think it reflects a certain self-conception within the party today – that real Americans are White Americans. And if that’s the message that they’re sending, it’s one I’m receiving, loud and clear.

188 thoughts on “Left vs. White

  1. 145 · Nayagan said

    and makes Honest Tea, arugula and science the hated accessories of ‘elite’ americans.

    From what I’ve been told on Sepia, I thought is was Dems who ran on the platform of “class envy”? :)

  2. “America has never in its history been 93% White, except perhaps on TV. Instead, I think it reflects a certain self-conception within the party today – that real Americans are White Americans.”

    Is this really a surprise to anyone?

  3. 138 An related observation from the article – Challenges of a divided America

    From the same Op-Ed (written before Gov. Palin joined the “Country First” team): But the second definition is causing increasing problems for him. This interpretation says that any man or woman can have a decent life – with food on the table, petrol in the car, clothes for their children –if they work hard and keep their heads down. This version is not so much about creativity as toil. subscribers to Dream 2 are precisely those suffering most from the present economic downturn: the Michigan car workers under threat of their jobs…

    So we have African Americans /Liberals/”creative types” favoring option 1, and “hard working” (?) Americans, who toil, favoring option 2? The author notes,that Joe Biden, who’s also presumably toiled, (unlike his running mate)was chosen in part to assure this second group. I don’t doubt that. But when did the true story of a person coming from a single parent family, (former food stamp recipient)entering and graduating from an Ivy league school, on merit, going on to serve in the state and US senate not have anything to do with hard work, or not represent the American Dream?

    Welcome to the bizarro world of American Politics. FT.COM

    To his supporters – and I include here the millions of disenfranchised Europeans who want to vote for Mr Obama – this is a quintessentially American story: the rise even from the humblest beginnings of those with talent and determination. Mr Obama’s African-American heritage merely serves to underline the power of opportunity. In the hands of Republicans, the strength becomes a weakness. Mr Kerry was a war hero, but could not be trusted to be tough on terrorism. Mr Obama’s “otherness” is somehow un-American, just as Mr Kerry’s knowledge of French was proof positive of his lack of patriotism….The Republican candidate may be so rich that he cannot recall how many properties he owns. But Mr McCain can lose himself in the crowd at a country-and-western show. The self-made African-American Mr Obama is the suited elitist.

    But maybe toil/struggle/hard work actual ability has nothing to do with it— because Nostradamus ,aka ,last exist from the convention has noted; 2008 is the year- a black guy was meant to become President.

  4. 153 · dilettante said

    this is a quintessentially American story: the rise even from the humblest beginnings of those with talent and determination. Mr Obama’s African-American heritage merely serves to underline the power of opportunity.

    “Only in America!”. Heh heh.

  5. IQ test says: “I am repeating myself here, but can you provide examples of Michelle Obama’s “opinions about whites” with some evidence?”

    One can infer from code, remember? Nudge, nudge, wink, wink. I’m sure George Allen leaked a few clues about his biases before the Macca incident. Michelle was vocally not proud to be an “American.” Well, that’s ok. Most of us, even ABDs, aren’t proud much of the time lately, but her husband is running for president of the place. Then “Americans” began voting for her husband. Then she became proud for the first time. Now who gave her her big surprise? I’m sure it was not the African-American contingent. But as I admitted, Michelle is not the candidate. I should not have picked on her.

    “Only one. This is the year a black person has a good chance of winning. Simple as that.”

    IQ test asks: Why do you say that?

    I don’t know IQ test. I guess because it’s true and I’m a smarty pants too.

  6. 155 · last exit from the convention said

    One can infer from code, remember?

    Do you have examples of the “code”?

    I don’t know IQ test.

    Ok, do let me know when you do.

  7. “But maybe toil/struggle/hard work actual ability has nothing to do with it— because Nostradamus ,aka ,last exist from the convention has noted; 2008 is the year- a black guy was meant to become President.”

    “LEFTC aka Nostradamus.” No–reincarnated actually.

    Anyway, none of these politicians would get anywhere with the machinery doing most of the work. Black candidates have worked very hard in the past. This is the likeliest year one will win. Last year I would have said it was the year a (white) lady would win. However–it could be the old white guy. Nostra is not always right. I don’t think Biden helps too much, nepotistic pol that he is. I don’t care how much he toiled, he’s not inspiring. All these candidates have “toiled” and have their stories. Just don’t judge a book by its’ cover.

  8. 145 · Nayagan said

    People want to have their cake and eat it it too? Not news, human nature. That’s the attitude that produces a Lou Dobbs and makes Honest Tea, arugula and science the hated accessories of ‘elite’ americans.

    It can produce a Lou Dobbs or it can produce an Emma Goldman. The point is go for the good ones and engage with what they say. Anyway, my point was just to challenge the [deleted] [deleted] [deleted] that gets spewed out in the name of nationalism – American and otherwise. Applies to understanding Gandhi, applies to understanding the American working class.

  9. 151 · IQ test said

    145 · Nayagan said
    and makes Honest Tea, arugula and science the hated accessories of ‘elite’ americans.
    From what I’ve been told on Sepia, I thought is was Dems who ran on the platform of “class envy”? :)

    I think he was talking about class in general. But, yeah, the ability of the Republicans to get away with class warfare for a few decades while pretending not to be engaging in it is, well, breathtaking. Thank god it’s finally ending and we can return to corporate hegemony before people like Thomas Frank takeover ;)

  10. I think he refutes them because they’re part of a political project of imposing a particular worldview on people and mobilizing people towards a political project.

    I agree. And notice the elitism. The people are mobilized rather than come to their conclusions out of their own free will. Those simpletons. How in the world could they think the cultural revolution or ukrainaian famine are on par with the holocaust? don’t they know the cubans love their heathcare? freedom of religion and speech be damned.

    But these simpletons could see what men like Sartre–who went to the USSR and proclaimed their was more freedom of speech there than america–could not. Conservatves have lonmg played this elitism charge effectively.

    Much of chomsky is an attempt to undermne classic liberal freedoms, like freedom of speech, which have more or less solved the problem of indoctrination by offering the free marketplace of ideas. chomsky sees his ideas losing and creates a conspiracy theory to explain it away. in his world, citizens in a free country are rubes, b/c its not really free, its not really a democracy.

    2. Speaking of nuance, do you have ANY proof that “wealth…is generally respected in america” as a general rule? I would say ‘currently tolerated by the working / middle class with the promise of upward mobility and indoctrination into capitalist ideology

    .’

    No. just my observation. But we’re not too far apart as you concede atleast toleration. But why americans need to be indoctrinated to an ideology that has created one of the highest standard of livings in the world is beyond me. not that americans are capitalist ideologues, just that they can look at the failure of the alternatives, their own wealth relative to the rest of the world, and conclude america is a great place to be, in part b/c of its free market system. chomsky, however, appears gaobsmacked and treats the american people like cult memebers drinking poisend kool aid, dooing thigs obviously not in thier own self-interst.

    How else to account for things like Shays rebellion, the Populist movement, William Jennings Bryan, Eugene Debs, the FDR coalition, the underlying emotional appeal behind the “elitism” charge (which is actually on the identity components of class differences, among other things), Roger and Me, etc.? There’s always been a current of resistance in the United States and at times it has assumed a lot of prominence (and it’s already started to come back in full force).

    yes, free countries always have dissent.

    3. Can you leave the nationalism at home please? It’s not useful for having a conversation. If the U.S. is exceptional, so is every other place in the world, from an analytical vantage point.

    I’m not patrotic, really. american excetioniam is that it was born less from a culture, more from an ideology…the american project if you will. this is why we don’t have the extreme left or right that other nations do. it is this excep[tionalim that allowed america to lead the world thru the defeat of fascism then communism. so my love of america is not like my fathers love of india, which is rooted in culture, tradition, religion; and pride in being born into that tradition…true conservatism.

  11. There is no denying that the best educated, the most intelligent , the most intellectually accomplished americans (the Nobel Laureates, the PhDs, the scientists, the students and faculties at the very best american colleges and universities, jewish-americans etc) are overwhelmingly liberals socially and politically.

    Which is why I didn’t deny it.

    You seem to think that looking at the lower end of academic achievement somehow balances that out and confirms Razib’s claim that “conservatives are as smart as liberals”.

    How can I think that when I never even addressed Razib’s claims. I addressed yours: “It seems obvious to me that white republicans on average are significantly dumber than white Democrats” or “I wanted data to confirm or deny my point that white democrats seem to be a more intelligent breed than white republicans.”

  12. Do you have examples of the “code”?

    I don’t know IQ test.” Ok, do let me know when you do.

    It’s a long, long thread, and it’s easy to quote the wrong answers to the wrong questions which I believe you have done IQ test.. “I don’t know” was not my answer to “code” cracking. It was my answer to “Why Obama has a good chance at winning” and oddly..

    Our exchange went like this:

    LEFTC said “…This is the year a black person has a good chance of winning. Simple as that.”

    IQ test asks: “Why do you say that?”

    LEFTC says “I don’t know IQ test. I guess because it’s true and I’m a smarty pants too.”

    The “I don’t know” comment was modesty, for LEFTC is not omniscient, just intuitive and watchful. LEFTC is not predicting a win, just stating the obvious–he has a good chance and this is the first time a non-white candidate has had a good chance. A crystal mirror is not even necessary for that.

  13. 160 · Manju said

    But these simpletons could see what men like Sartre–who went to the USSR and proclaimed their was more freedom of speech there than america–could not.

    These simpletons also think Barack Obama is a muslim. Let’s not reflexively turn unexamined gut instinct into a virtue.

  14. 160 · Manju said

    Much of chomsky is an attempt to undermne classic liberal freedoms, like freedom of speech, which have more or less solved the problem of indoctrination by offering the free marketplace of ideas. chomsky sees his ideas losing and creates a conspiracy theory to explain it away. in his world, citizens in a free country are rubes, b/c its not really free, its not really a democracy.

    Well, it’s not. Just saying that all ideas can be expressed does not mean that all ideas have equal ability to affect the course of events. Power and money matter. (And to be topical, presidential elections and swiftboating – which was in the purest sense an “idea” – are a clear example of that.)

  15. 162 · last exit from the convention said

    nd it’s easy to quote the wrong answers to the wrong questions which I believe you have done IQ test..

    I was indeed referring to your claims of Michelle Obama’s views on whites.

    The “I don’t know” comment was modesty

    Well, making an overarching claim that Obama is going to become prez because he’s black and then being unable to offer a justification for it is hardly modesty.

  16. 160 · Manju said

    I agree. And notice the elitism. The people are mobilized rather than come to their conclusions out of their own free will. Those simpletons. How in the world could they think the cultural revolution or ukrainaian famine are on par with the holocaust? don’t they know the cubans love their heathcare? freedom of religion and speech be damned.

    Hey, lets toss around wild accusations! Acknowledging the existence of hegemony (real) doesn’t mean that people are deprived of their agency; in fact, it wouldn’t work without it. It’s not that working class people are stupid, it’s that their information sources and time is limited, and there are few people actually advocating for their interests (Democrats included). If you want to call it elitist to point this out, that’s fine with me – but I think it’s just accurate.

    No. just my observation. But we’re not too far apart as you concede atleast toleration. But why americans need to be indoctrinated to an ideology that has created one of the highest standard of livings in the world is beyond me. not that americans are capitalist ideologues, just that they can look at the failure of the alternatives, their own wealth relative to the rest of the world, and conclude america is a great place to be, in part b/c of its free market system. chomsky, however, appears gaobsmacked and treats the american people like cult memebers drinking poisend kool aid, dooing thigs obviously not in thier own self-interst.

    There are three ways to main political stability, and all are employed in the U.S.: coercion; economic buyoffs; and ideology. It’s in the latter that the media, the public discourse (esp. of postmodernists like the Republicans), and tools like deportations of radicals have been used (not to mention occasional killings). And the latter points to the interplay of the different forces – ‘America is the best! We’ll support imperialism that pays for our social security!’ (not that anyone will actually say that out loud, but that’s what’s going on) When the system doesn’t deliver it need to be reconfigured and allows for ‘progress.’

    yes, free countries always have dissent.

    By free, I take you to mean hegemonically controlled by an elite today. And yes, they have some dissent, but within very specific bounds. Outside those bounds, dissent is not allowed. All hail freedom!!!!!!!!!

    I’m not patrotic, really. american excetioniam is that it was born less from a culture, more from an ideology…the american project if you will. this is why we don’t have the extreme left or right that other nations do. it is this excep[tionalim that allowed america to lead the world thru the defeat of fascism then communism. so my love of america is not like my fathers love of india, which is rooted in culture, tradition, religion; and pride in being born into that tradition…true conservatism.

    You don’t have to be patriotic to argue in nationalist frames. America doesn’t have an extreme left (it definitely has an extreme right right now on the margins of the mainstream) in the mainstream because it is socially, economically, and politically buillt to deliver this result. It’s called “liberal capitalist ‘democracy’” btw, you’re not patriotic, but you ‘love…america’? How are we supposed to make sense of that? Or rather, it seems to be the point not to be able to ;)

    But don’t you worry, every attempt to confuse, ellide, conflate, and otherwise mask will be returned with a specific and hopefully but not always nuanced critique of what you say. And on that level, we will fight a discursive battle, and one that I will win.

  17. 166 · Dr AmNonymous said

    it definitely has an extreme right right now on the margins of the mainstream

    In fact, opinion makers on the extreme right such as Ponnuru and D’Souza have made an argument which essentially concludes that the way for America to make common cause with radical Islamists such as Wahhabis and the Taliban is to emphasize their shared moral rigidity, which stands in stark opposition to their common enemy: the licentious liberal left.

  18. I was indeed referring to your claims of Michelle Obama’s views on whites.

    The “I don’t know” comment was modesty Well, making an overarching claim that Obama is going to become prez because he’s black and then being unable to offer a justification for it is hardly modesty.

    IQ test, do you know the meaning of context and citing peoples quotes outside it? Yes? I thought you did. You have the makings of a good politician. If Obama were saying the same things and was a white guy from Kansas, no, he wouldn’t be making the splash he’s making. Then again, if he were a white guy he wouldn’t be saying exactly the same things. Why is that so hard for someone of your high calibre to grasp? And indeed, why is that necessarily even a bad thing?

  19. 168 · Last exit from the convention said

    IQ test, do you know the meaning of context and citing peoples quotes outside it? Yes? I thought you did. You have the makings of a good politician.

    Ok, next time I will quote your entire comment and the entire comment of mine to which you were responding, instead of just providing a link to the comment directly above.

    If Obama were saying the same things and was a white guy from Kansas, no, he wouldn’t be making the splash he’s making. Then again, if he were a white guy he wouldn’t be saying exactly the same things.

    So, what would a white guy from Kansas be saying? And, refresh my memory, how have white guys generally done with that entire running for president thing again?

  20. “So, what would a white guy from Kansas be saying? And, refresh my memory, how have white guys generally done with that entire running for president thing again?”

    You’ll have to figure that one out yourself. Having once seen you misquote me, means I don’t play in your sandbox anymore. I am leaving politics to spend more time with my family.

  21. The reason, why minorities weren’t there at the GOP convention was that minorities don’t participate in Republican Agenda. Minorities have a mind set that Ds will take care of them. Rs have done more for the minorities than Ds but Rs have failed to communicate the same to the minorities.

    Desis don’t participate at all irrespective of the party, other that for picture ops.

  22. Lawyers tend to be Dems as liberals favor a litigious society. Lawyers contribute very little to the GDP. Both of Dems candidates are lawyers.

    College professors in liberal arts discipline are almost always dems. They live off research grants and teat of the government. Frivolous research dollars are hard to come by from Republicans if the candidate is truly fiscal conservative. So by being Dems they are looking for their own self interest.

    Welfare recipients tend to be democrats for obvious reasons. They have a lot of common with the above two groups. These groups tend to be parasitic.

    Small Businessmen always tend to be Republicans. These entrepreneurs take risk and the health of the nation depends upon success of these entrepreneurs. Its the small business that become big business ensures a future tax paying base. Dems policies of higher taxation hurt the small business and choke the economy.

    You can have all the high IQ you want, but if you do not produce innovative goods and services that has demand…country is going into the toilet…a la CCCP

  23. Dems policies of higher taxation hurt the small business and choke the economy.

    Have you ever run a small business? I have. It was a sole proprietorship. Let me tell you what choked my business. It was not having health care. And then, because i was fortunate enough to live in a state with decent politics, I could have health care because I wasn’t making enough money to survive. In addition to that, I had to pay 7.65% extra payroll taxes because I was the owner and employee of my business (I paid 15.3% while most people pay 7.65% in social security and medicare). In addition to that, I was responsible for paying taxes ahead of time unless it was a Thursday and the Jets had won in week four by more than 9 points and I had a red balloon lying in front of me with the wind blowing east. All of which served as an incentive to keep my income down (and before i quit my job to start said small business, to not quit my job and start a small business).

    Okay? These are the things that people – or at least me – have to deal with in running a small business – not eliminating the inheritance tax. So if you want to give me some good small business support that doesn’t involve destroying entrepreunership how about national health care regardless of income and reducing payroll taxes for sole proprietorship without destroying social security and medicare (which, since I’ve paid double for, I would like to see the fruits of). And pay people good wages so they can actually leave their jobs and engage in the entrepreunership that Republicans LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLURVE talking about but do little to support – unless it’s a multibillion dollar corporation engaging in war profiteering.

    And stop using me as a political talking point in arguments to help the rich at my expense – it makes me furious.

  24. btw, i’m sorry to hear that the “health of the nation” depended on my sole proprietorship ;) grrrrr….it makes me soooo mad!!!!!!!!!

  25. Lawyers tend to be Dems as liberals favor a litigious society. Lawyers contribute very little to the GDP.

    That’s going a bit too far–something like tort law, which says, “do what you want, but you’re responsible for non-cost-justified injuries” is probably preferable (from a right-wing perspective) to Euro-weenie immense regulation of what you can and can’t make.

  26. Having once seen you misquote me, means I don’t play in your sandbox anymore.

    You are not the only one he has deceitfully misquoted. IQ test = HMF, a stalker with character issues who is notorious for whining ad nauseam about american born desi women not giving him the time of day. Cant really blame them :)

    It does not matter whether the intellectual dishonesty is coming from liberals or conservatives. It has to be called out.

  27. College professors in liberal arts discipline are almost always dems.

    College professors in all disciplines, including the faculty of the top science and technology colleges in America such as MIT, Caltech, Stanford etc, tend to be liberal:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A8427-2005Mar28.html

    “College faculties, long assumed to be a liberal bastion, lean further to the left than even the most conspiratorial conservatives might have imagined, a new study says. By their own description, 72 percent of those teaching at American universities and colleges are liberal and 15 percent are conservative, says the study being published this week. The imbalance is almost as striking in partisan terms, with 50 percent of the faculty members surveyed identifying themselves as Democrats and 11 percent as Republicans.The disparity is even more pronounced at the most elite schools, where, according to the study, 87 percent of faculty are liberal and 13 percent are conservative. “What’s most striking is how few conservatives there are in any field,” said Robert Lichter, a professor at George Mason University and a co-author of the study. “There was no field we studied in which there were more conservatives than liberals or more Republicans than Democrats”

    “The most liberal faculties are those devoted to the humanities (81 percent) and social sciences (75 percent), according to the study. But liberals outnumbered conservatives even among engineering faculty (51 percent to 19 percent) and business faculty (49 percent to 39 percent).”

  28. Dems policies of higher taxation hurt the small business and choke the economy.

    Actually, the Republican policies of tax breaks for the wealthy and excessive deregulation of the economic system have a record that compares unfavorably with the democrats:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/31/business/31view.html?_r=1&em&oref=slogin

    “Data for the whole period from 1948 to 2007, during which Republicans occupied the White House for 34 years and Democrats for 26, show average annual growth of real gross national product of 1.64 percent per capita under Republican presidents versus 2.78 percent under Democrats. That 1.14-point difference, if maintained for eight years, would yield 9.33 percent more income per person, which is a lot more than almost anyone can expect from a tax cut.”

    “Professor Bartels unearths a stunning statistical regularity: Over the entire 60-year period, income inequality trended substantially upward under Republican presidents but slightly downward under Democrats, thus accounting for the widening income gaps over all.”

    “The two Great Partisan Divides combine to suggest that, if history is a guide, an Obama victory in November would lead to faster economic growth with less inequality, while a McCain victory would lead to slower economic growth with more inequality. Which part of the Obama menu don’t you like?”

  29. 177 · Dhoni said

    You are not the only one he has deceitfully misquoted.

    Give me an example where I misquoted either of you.

  30. 177 · Dhoni said

    IQ test = HMF

    Dhoni, misidentifying me as HMF hurts worse than calling a high caste brahmin like me a sudra.

  31. Keep it clean, please. Things are busy in the bunker these days. If things look too ugly, I’ll have to shut down the thread. Just disagree with the argument, not with the person, and stay polite. That’s all.

  32. Welfare recipients tend to be democrats for obvious reasons. They have a lot of common with the above two groups. These groups tend to be parasitic.

    Here ‘s reality check for you: its the mostly conservative red states which are effectively subsidized by the taxes of the mostly liberal blue states. And the overwhelmingly white rural areas are dependent on the charity of the multicultural metropolitan areas. So who are the real “parasites”?

    http://www.commondreams.org/views02/0507-03.htm

    “True Blue Americans by Paul Krugman”

    “Remember how hard New York’s elected representatives had to fight to get $20 billion in aid for the stricken city — aid that had already been promised? Well, recently Congress agreed to give farmers $180 billion in subsidies over the next decade. By the way, the population of New York City is about twice as large as America’s total farm population.”

    “You’ve heard the story many times: the denizens of the heartland, we’re told, are rugged, self-reliant, committed to family; the inhabitants of the coast are whining yuppies……I’ve done some statistical comparisons using one popular definition of the heartland: the “red states” that — in an election that pitted both coasts against the middle — voted for Mr. Bush. How do they compare with the “blue states” that voted for Al Gore?”

    “Certainly the heartland has no claim to superiority when it comes to family values. If anything, the red states do a bit worse than the blue states when you look at indicators of individual responsibility and commitment to family. Children in red states are more likely to be born to teenagers or unmarried mothers……per capita there were 60 percent more divorces in Montana than in New Jersey” [no surprise then that Sarah Palin's unmarried teenage preganant daughter is not an issue with these "family values" bible thumpers]

    “But what’s really outrageous is the claim that the heartland is self-reliant. That grotesque farm bill, by itself, should put an end to all such assertions; but it only adds to the immense subsidies the heartland already receives from the rest of the country. As a group, red states pay considerably less in taxes than the federal government spends within their borders; blue states pay considerably more. Over all, blue America subsidizes red America to the tune of $90 billion or so each year.

    And within the red states, it’s the metropolitan areas that pay the taxes, while the rural regions get the subsidies. When you do the numbers for red states without major cities, you find that they look like Montana, which in 1999 received $1.75 in federal spending for every dollar it paid in federal taxes. The numbers for my home state of New Jersey were almost the opposite. Add in the hidden subsidies, like below-cost provision of water for irrigation, nearly free use of federal land for grazing and so on, and it becomes clear that in economic terms America’s rural heartland is our version of southern Italy: a region whose inhabitants are largely supported by aid from their more productive compatriots.

    There’s no mystery about why the heartland gets such special treatment: it’s a result of our electoral system, which gives states with small populations — mainly, though not entirely, red states — disproportionate representation in the Senate, and to a lesser extent in the Electoral College. In fact, half the Senate is elected by just 16 percent of the population.

    But while this raw political clout is a fact of life, at least we can demand an end to the hypocrisy. The heartland has no special claim to represent the “real America.” And the blue states have a right to ask why, at a time when the federal government has plunged back into deficit, when essential domestic programs are under assault, a small minority of heavily subsidized Americans should feel that they are entitled to even more aid.”,/b>

  33. Manju says”Much of chomsky is an attempt to undermne classic liberal freedoms, like freedom of speech, which have more or less solved the problem of indoctrination by offering the free marketplace of ideas. chomsky sees his ideas losing and creates a conspiracy theory to explain it away. in his world, citizens in a free country are rubes, b/c its not really free, its not really a democracy.”

    As promised, I did just leave politics to spend more time with my family, but they went out… and I love to chomp on Chomsky.

    One thing very fishy about Chomsky is that he has NEVER wanted to know who is behind certain conspiracies of the 20th century, the most recent being 9/11. He ridicules “conspiracies” except those that government approved. He said, and I quote, that he “doesn’t care who killed JFK” Or about any other controverasal political assassination. This from someone who proposes to be investigating language and culture at its deepest levels. Sooooo—anyone who communicates with him should feel free to call Chomsky on any conspiracy he concocts and tell him you don’t care. The way we the highly intelligent democrats kiss up to him, no wonder he considers we the citizens to be rubes.

  34. Sooooo—anyone who communicates with him should feel free to call Chomsky on any conspiracy he concocts and tell him you don’t care. The way we the highly intelligent democrats kiss up to him, no wonder he considers we the citizens to be rubes.

    Yeah the only problem with yoru argument is that he offers a coherent analysis that gibes with some empirical evidence that many others have pointed to (like corporate control of the media). So while you might not agree wtih him or his style or even the tenets on which he bases his worldview, calling him a conspiracy theorist is a mischaracterization.

    Keep in mind, BEFORE the internet, he read tons and tons of newspapers and other materials from around the world. So while you can always disagree with him, calling him a ‘kook’ is just another form of redbaiting, and we don’t like that.

  35. Since the New Deal, Republicans have been on the wrong side of every issue of concern to ordinary Americans; Social Security, the war in Vietnam, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, equal rights, civil liberties, church-state separation, consumer issues, public education, reproductive privacy, health care, labor issues including child labor, gun policy, campaign-finance reform, the environment and tax fairness.