One Nation, Divisible
We are a country not just divided, but fragmented along axes of race, age, religion, economic status and geography. There are now 15 States where citizens have filed petitions to secede from the Union. “These include Louisiana (which led the charge), the Republic of Texas, Kentucky, Colorado, New Jersey, Montana, North Dakota, Indiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Alabama, Florida, Georgia and Oregon.” I don’t know which is number 15, but I’m gong to guess Oklahoma.
I’m not going to get flip about it. While these petitions have virtually no chance of achieving anything, it’s important to remember two things:
1) You never hear anything like this when Republicans win.
2) All but 4 of these states represent the (since 1965) solid Republican South.
Another geographic dimension is urban vs rural. When I do get flip, I say Obama won everywhere that people outnumber cattle, deer, goats or alligators. This comes distressingly close to being the truth. Look at the electoral map of just about any State. I like to consider Ohio, since it is my home State and in many ways represents the U.S. in miniature. But pick a State at random [or Texas in particular] and you’ll probably see the same scenario. The Ohio electoral map shows that Obama carried 16 of Ohio’s 88 counties. Half of these are strung along the Lake Erie shore, four more are contiguous in the densely populated north-east corner, and the other four contain Columbus, Dayton, Cincinnati and Athens.
I’m not ambitious enough to undertake the study, but I’ll hypothesize that Obama’s vote percentage in each county is directly proportional to the total population – and this in a State where the counties don’t vary much in physical size. Consider that Lucas Co. [essentially my home town, Toledo] with 198,000 votes cast went for Obama by 64 to 34%, while Mercer Co. along the IN border with 21,000 votes cast went for Romney by 77 to 22%. You can find these kinds of results all over the country.
Another divide is along education level. Among the 15 States with the best public school systems, Obama carried 13, while among the 15 States with the worst public school systems, Romney carried 12. I see this as a big component in the recent Republican war on education. One thing you develop as a result of good education is a set of critical thinking skills, which then give you the ability to see through nonsense peddlers like Rush, Trump, and the whole Fox roster.
All of this tends to make me pessimistic about our nations future. But I see rays of hope amidst the great divide. Even in Georgia, which went 53 to 45% for Romney, you find Obama winning by huge margins in Atlanta, Macon, Augusta, Columbus, Savannah, and Albany.
Plus, another thing is happening that you have to see a country-wide county level electoral map to notice.
There is a blue streak that starts along the Mississippi river valley where Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi converge and runs almost continuously through Alabama, Georgia and the Carolinas to join with the blue States along the coast.
I call it the band of sanity running through the South, and it might just represent an opportunity for progressives to build on going forward.
People are starting to have fun with this. At my last look on the White House petitions page, the number of petitions now exceeds 30. Interestingly, there is no way to limit who signs these things. For example, there is no way to prevent someone in, say, Tennessee, from signing the New Jersey petition. And it would surprise me at all that some individuals are signing all the petitions posted. From what I can see, however, most of the signatories are from deep, deep red states.
Jazz, Check ou the petition sent in by students of davenoon from LGM to the create a petition site in response to the secessionists. It is hilarious. https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/set-alaska-free/5ZRwL9nC
Jazz, Not to say your piece isn’t a very serious commentary. These people are still fighting the civil war for Christ sake.
Civil War —> Civil Rights —> Republican South.
Racism is alive and virulent.
LBJ knew this in 1965. I think he’d be astounded though, that it still persists almost 50 years later.
I’m all for the peaceful secession of the red states from the Union. Would lower my taxes.
the thing you fail to see ,more education= more indoctrination with liberal college professors and teachers. my own brother has a PHD in political science ,from jerkley,liberalism is like his religion .just because you don’t have a formal education does not mean you are a racist hillbilly you condescending fuck.
I’m pretty sure that in addition to his progressiveness, the Berkeley grad also has better grammar.
David cut the crap. If I wasn’t so busy deleting Ambien spam and didn’t have an appointment your misogynistic bullshit would be next on the delete list.
You don’t have to be “left of center” to be a valued member of this community. On the other hand you do need to add value to the discussion. And frankly “condescending fuck” and “dumb bitch” don’t make my own personal ‘let him rant’ filter.
And it has nothing to do with the fact that I am in fact a graduate of Jerkley (hence my avatar). And everything to do with you being offensive. I might even go so far as to adopt your own language and say “pseudo intellectual fuck”. But gosh that wouldn’t be civil.
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“I love it when you eggheads stoop to my level”
Yeah well love THAT. Last warning, the next attempt goes right to spam.
Here’s the rub for me. Twice now Calif citizens have failed to pass items that I was certain of all states would pass: pot and genetic engineered food labeling.
I mean, we’re talking that state with Berkley, Haight-Ashbury, Holleywood, Monterey Pop, environmental movement, etc, etc, etc.
And it’s now like all dem in it’s state legislature or something?
I’m willing to let the troll’s comments stand,because they are illustrative of a particular kind of right wing mind set. [That one that already got deleted must have been really special.] They kind of remind me of the comment I got on my blog once that started: “Hey, dumb person . . .”
Does education actually teach one anything about how the world actually works, or generate habits of critical thought and analysis? No, it is liberal indoctrination!
As evidence we have the rabid liberal religion of a PhD in political science.
Never mind that equating political views to religion might be a form of projection uniquely suited to the right wing mind set.
Chastising me for drawing an equivalency that I did not draw is another typical right wing trick, indicating either a lack of reading comprehension, or a simple inability to think straight.
And then the name calling. That is really, oh, so precious.
Indeed – this is why I blog.
Thank you David Michel for so vividly illustrating the very points you attempt to refute.
The other thing about the regressive mind set is a total tone-deafness to irony.
And no, that is not condescending, because I am not patronizing you.
I am holding you up to ridicule.
Thank you for playing and have a nice day.
you have given this way to much thought,I voted for obama,I must have really touched a nerve sorry,just having fun.I just gave you what you wanted.a right winger to hate. by the way I voted for clinton two times,and all gore.bush stole that election.any way dont be so thin skinned .your acting like brad delong.
news,Cornell West Obama a ‘republican in blackface’black MSNBC hosts are selling their soul’s.(you tube).
I have no desire to hate right-wingers. What I hate is the thoughtless prattle of ideological talking points. I seriously don’t give a hirsute rodent’s hindquarters who you voted for.
Finding out that you are not only a troll, but a blatantly dishonest troll is not in any way endearing.
I’ll take your behavioral advice as seriously as I take your political opinions.
Which, given your rapid back-track, at this point are about as well defined as Romney’s policy positions.
Ohio??? You were deprived and Toledo? The only thing I have found interesting is the Toledo Zoo which is cute. I am sure there is something else in Toledo; but, I have yet to find it as I zip through it on my way to the Ann Arbor (not from there . . . Chicago and Wisconsin are my favs).
I work in the heartland of Bible thumping Ohio . . . Lexington. These people are absolutely, awesomely, amazing (triple A rated)in their lemming run for the cliff in support of Romney this last election. Their was no discuss, no facts other than hearsay, and no reasoning when talking to them. My conclusion? Its all about a black man in The Big White House. This old white man voted for the black man as he could (if he felt up to leading) take us out from under the Reign of Witches we are still under and have been since 2001. The supposed deficit cliff is an opportunity to break the back of the Republicans in Congress if Obama wishes to be bold.
Go just a few miles out any of the 5 major cities of Ohio in any direction, and you might as well be in Alabama (or Lake Erie).
Toledo has a seriously great Art Museum, a few nice parks, and some decent restaurants. Plus the Jeep plant, of course.
But, alas, I think the town is slowly dying.
hey JzB, i happen to be a few miles out from a major Ohio city…
Do they have one to bring back slavery yet? Leave it to the states?
No matter how intelligent people are, when they act against their own best interests and those of their countrymen, and cling to a theory despite proofs of its ineffective or counter effective results, their intelligence is no longer in charge, except inasmuch as they use it to defend the cherished theory.
I think of it as acquired, or perhaps imposed, stupidity, in that realm. People can be brilliant in one realm and thick as two planks in another — it’s no insult to point this out to them. However, it is always taken as an insult. Strange, that.
People have been taught to be defensive. It’s a natural response in fear situation that can be capitalized on by anyone for good or bad.
Have we all forgotten the anthrax scare when the news and government were telling everyone to go out and by plastic sheet and duct tape for their door and windows? That was the height of fear inducement and nothing or no one in position to do so had talked the nation back.
In a defensive posture, ones attention is focused on the here, now and immediate. Thus, what they see around them is all determinate in preceiving events. It is the one who tells you “I know, I see it all the time”.
The task thus is not to through more facts at such people. It is to undo the fear such that trust can be developed such that one such person can preceive beyond their immediate experiences and emotional response to such.
It is in fact teaching a pilot to trust the instruments instead of their ass in the seat. This is only done slowly as the pilot learns to trust the instruments do to their brain adding a new path of interpretation of events and then collating outcomes and solutions.
I usually start by pointing out that there is now way a nation can produce 14 trillion dollars a year in goods and services if it was true that people just are waiting for the government to give them everything. If this does not work, I note that they could not drive down the road to the local packy and successfully complete their fix if on the whole we were not a nation of honest, trusting working for a living people.
There was a rather interesting recent article on what you called the “band of sanity”. It turns out that this band is related to reasons of not just demography, but ultimately, geology:
So it’s actually a band of lingering segregation.
That does not give my optimism a boost.
One note on the “band of sanity” running through the south. What you’re actually seeing is a streak of high-density African-American counties, which used to be big cotton production regions — whose distribution is a function of the coastline during the cretaceous.
here’s another petition y’all might want to sign:
Mr. President, please sign an executive order such that each American citizen who signed a petition from any state to secede from the USA shall have their citizenship stripped and be peacefully deported.
with 25,000 signatures, the white house must react…
David Michel, you have pushed me too far.
What I tell commentors on my blog is this:
Disagreement is welcome and invited. But be civil. I’m not especially easy to offend, but once offended will have a severely jaundiced outlook on the offender. I recommend against probing for my limits or taking too much advantage of my good graces. Trollish comments (as determined by me) and Chinese porn-spam will be summarily deleted. Play nice, and we’ll all have fun.
Update – If you are going to argue with me, please bring relevant facts, the ability to reason, and some skill in methods of discourse. The spouting of ideologically approved talking points is specifically unwelcome, and will likely lead to ridicule.
You are not worth my or anybody else’s trouble. Henceforth, if you comment on any of my posts, your comment will be deleted, unread, and with extreme prejudice.
Well said, Jazz. I specifically like rading Angry Bear because of the quality of the posts and ESPECIALLY because of the quality of the comments. If I want to read crap like that I’ll head over to Huffington, wait, Townhall.
“Update – If you are going to argue with me, please bring relevant facts, the ability to reason, and some skill in methods of discourse. The spouting of ideologically approved talking points is specifically unwelcome, and will likely lead to ridicule.”
That’s a little more than even I can muster in these discussions. I’ll be satisfied with Dave just dropping the inane vulgarity and race baiting which has been way out of line.
I tolerated a lot from DM before I brought the hammer down, and he kept pushing, and getting further out of line.
Anyone who wants to ague with me – fine. Prove me wrong, and you’re helping me improve. But I won’t tolerate vile personal insults and viscous name calling.
His loss, not mine.
I’m not going to start deleting comments because they don’t meet the standards of that update.
But it is a reasonable set of guidelines for any well intentioned commentor who wants to be taken seriously.
Looks well reasoned…I will be back up for you.
“1) You never hear anything like this when Republicans win.”
Uh, YEA. Selective memory we have.
That didn’t go down the memory hole – I never had any awareness of it. Plus, I’ll say 3 dozen frustrated people meeting in Vermont, a wave of wild rumblings across the interwebs or flip comments by Lawrence O’Donnell do not a viable movement make.
Do you ever watch O’Donnell? I do, and his tongue is quite high in is cheek a good portion of the time.
That stuff was not in the same league with 5000 people signing a secession petition in S. Dakota, 25000 + in Texas and N. Carolina with S. Carolina close behind, and secession petitions being signed in all 50 States.
But I stand corrected. Something trivial and ephemeral that was vaguely similar to this did happen one other time.
Thank for for enlightening me.
The petition for North Carolina to secede from the United States reached the needed 25,000 signatures, to be considered by the White House, on Wednesday.
North Carolina was joined by Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida and Texas to have reached more than 25,000 signatures. South Carolina had more than 20,000 signatures on its petition as of noon on Wednesday.
In less than three days, the petition for the state of Texas surpassed the 25,000 signatures needed and continues to grow – nearing 100,000 on Wednesday afternoon.
btw, JzB, there’s now over 100,000 on the texas petition, and ron paul is supporting it…
maybe he’ll get to be prez of his own country after all..
I have to reluctantly admit, that after GWB got elected twice, I day-dreamed a lot about all the rational people seceding and founding a moon colony or something. I don’t think I would have signed a petition though. It was just a dream, a beautiful dream. The idiots ye have with ye always – and some of them are nice people in other ways.
Forget asking the brain-dead to leave… add Obama’s face to a greenback and they’ll haul tight ass for the exits!
I know we laugh about this, however these are official documents. This means there are rules and procedures in place to be followed when specified requirments have been met.
This is becoming no joke. We thought Chianey and his Senate nuclear option was a potential constitutional crisis, well…
The worst of this crisis is that this time we are dealing with a very large number of people who are ingnorant in the same manor a teenager is ingnorant when do to anger threaten to move away from home. As the teenager is threatening, they are not thinking about how they will get their laundry done. In fact, often such teenagers believe that just because they moved away from home does not mean they no longer have access to the family’s laundry facilaties.
This may not be funny too much longer. It may however be the thing that stops in it’s tracks this bogus “fiscal cliff” push.
Legitimate warning Daniel. I reside in Newt country, his war on everything was funny till it was NOT. I laugh to keep the bile from torching my esophagus.
uh, Houston, we have a problem.
If Texas secedes, do we get the space center back?
otherwise, i’ll say what I said to Mr Lincoln. Let ’em go, Abe, let ’em go.
Does anyone know where I can find a blank “New Jersey Petition Form” to fill out?