THANK YOU. At least someone isn't totally blind.
Most of the gains in this election were in the Ex-urbs, not truly rural areas, right?
Nasty tone aside, the core message of the Urban Archipelago still rings true: The Democratic party should not abandon its commitment to liberal progressive values in an attempt to curry favor with rural voters unwilling or unable to look beyond social wedge issues.
Much of the recent success in the inter-mountain west seems a backlash against poorly implemented trade deals. If anyone should be cleaning up in globalized economy, it should be rural farmers. They are in possession of true and deep structural advantages over any of their global competitors, including well-regulated and relatively plentiful water, rich soil, excellent transportation and processing infrastructure....
Yet most farmers are going slowly (or quickly) broke. Much of resurgent liberalism in places like Montana has come on the back of criticism of our trade policies, taking apart the false duality of no trade or this set of trade policies, demanding a better deal for American farmers on the global marketplace.
I've seen a faked out county map, which of course, overrepresents red areas (since noone lives there, they tend to be huge but have no voters to speak of).
Be interesting to see a population map.
I for one love all 50 states. DC I'm not so sure of, though ...
OH, DC's terrific once you get into the neighborhoods (some of them).
Worrying about how farmers vote is like worrying about how blacksmiths vote. There just aren't that many of them. But there is a farm culture in the red areas that revolves around farming even if most of the farming itself is done by one guy sitting in a ten-million-dollar combine.
But yes, exurbs. That's where people live. And these people can be courted without blowing your principles -- in fact, blowing your principles to court their votes is exactly what gets you in trouble in the long run out West.
The strategy of recapturing the American ideal for the Dems, and leaving the GOP to hunker down in the Deep South, is a good one. The rubes are willing to listen if you can convince them you're not lying out your ass to them, and if you have some kind of positive direction forward or at least a glimmer of one.
That's what it boils down to: who has the future? The Dems are extremely adept at pointing out what's wrong with the GOP, but that's never going to win any votes. In 2006, they (falteringly) picked up a positive future-oriented message, but what really put them over was the complete and utter collapse of the GOP's future. All the pie charts in the world aren't going to help in 2008 if all you have is the hope that that continues.
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