Thursday, February 16, 2012

Why Are Conservative Voters More Dependent On Government?

There has been quite a bit of discussion lately over this map. It shows that the areas of the country most dependent on the government are also the areas of the country that are most conservative. It confirms my own experiences with angry Tea Partiers who rant and rave about government spending while at the same receiving their Social Security and Medicare checks and while paying nothing in income taxes. Gotta keep the government off my medicare!

Anyone want to offer an explanation?

My explanation: Conservative voters have been lied to and manipulated. They have been led to believe that "Washington" is the problem, only that "Washington" does not include 2/3rd (defense and entitlement) of the federal budget. They have been led to believe that cutting large swathes of government at a time when older, working class, whites are unemployed will somehow make their lives better. They have been told that the problems in society come from scary elites and immigrants, not from changing dynamics in a complex world. Conservative pundits have completely failed at articulating a credible conservative strategy for government that would help the very people that buy their books and watch their television programs. In short, Talk Radio has profited immensely from perpetuating the pain coming from their listeners.

Snark aside, older, white, working class voters are suffering in this country and they need a credible leader who will address their needs. They don't need lies or red meat.

20 comments:

Terrye said...

Maybe they are afraid that the expansion of government threatens the programs that they have become dependent on..after all, virtually everyone will end up on social security and a medicare if they live long enough.

Ohio JOE said...

Alright Generalismo:
I'll bite, Some of the counties on your map that are dark are not only Democrat in terms of registured voters, but they have disproportionately voted for Democrat Presidential candidates. However, I will concede that the map show that more dark shaded counties are GOP and Conservative. On the other hand, maps can be misleading. The results of the 2000 Presidential election and the French European election were essentially ties in terms of the popular vote, but maps would not tell you that story. Furthermore, German maps often suggest that the Right Wing parties are weaker than popular votes are because Right Wing parties are concentrated in the Southern corner. Needless to say British, Irish and Austrailian maps are often misleading.

Since you are talking about class, you might consider that in the Canadian Constitutional referendum of 1992, a map would illustrate that the poorest provinces voted in favor to change the Canadian Constitution. However, the average income of Canadians who voted for the Constitutional change was higher than those who voted against the Constitutional change despite the map. So it short, I am not convinced of your map. You can tell yourself fantasies, but not all of us who live in Conservative counties are on food stamps pensions and the public dole.

Pablo said...

Never once said that "all of us who live in Conservative counties are on food stamps, pensions and the pubic dole." I am saying that the areas of the country that are the most dependent on government are mostly conservative. Again, look at the evidence.

Machtyn said...

I see the Appalachian coal country is well represented. Also the lower educated South is pulling a lot of benefits. Northern Michigan, Eastern Arizona, and the California-Oregon retirement center(?) are also well represented. I was confused why AZ was so well marked... perhaps that is heavy native American country? They do receive a large number of benefits for the terrible way they were treated in the 1800's.

It is helpful to remember that the South was deep blue Democrat for a very long time. The Democrat Party dumped them like a rag, stole the Civil Rights movement from the Republicans and pinned all the minority woes on them, and successfully changed the poor South to Republican country. But the South have always been poorer because textiles and farming (South) do not earn as much as engineering and manufacturing (West, North).

Wow! Check out the Unemployment Insurance... Oregon, Michigan and Pennsylvania pay out!

To play with the South earns less narrative, they also give out the most in Income Support.

Machtyn said...

Actually, I see some Union represented areas taking a lot of benefits - Coal country KY/WV. Sure, KY/WV may vote R nationally, but KY is very much a D state and locality. It hurts living here and I'm very tempted in moving across the river into IN.

Teemu said...

One factor is that upper middle class white collar folks and rich people tend not to live in rural areas. So those areas don't have as many of those huge net payers which will make the county's color nicer.

Pablo said...

Just so everyone knows, I think it is more of a coorelation, than causation. Nevertheless, older, white working class voters have been the hardest hit by the recession and so have a natural tendency to favor the grievance politics of the Palin wing of the party.

And the grievance politics is not going to help them.

Ohio JOE said...

"Again, look at the evidence." As I pointed out, a map is not evidence.

Anonymous said...

Machtyn, four of the counties in Eastern AZ represented on this map as highly dependent on the government are also heavily populated by indians. Navajo and Apache counties are mostly on the Navajo and Hopi reservations. Two of the other counties contain large Apache reservations.

Anonymous said...

Nothing is evidence to Steubenville Joe.

Ohio JOE said...

You are funny Pollman, map is not evidence to anymore who knows anything about maps.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting map, Pablo! Thank you.

-Martha

Massachusetts Conservative said...

It's pretty simple - rural areas tend to be more Republican. Rural areas also tend to be poorer.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm maybe this is a form of conservative projection... I have noticed that conservatives seem to be comfortable with all kinds hypocrisy... much more than I am comfortable with.

Maybe like Newt's lifestyle and Santorum's voting record... they can't see their own hypocrisy.

Ohio JOE said...

The biggest hypocrite is Mr. Romney, he had no problem going after Mr. Gingrich on values. Now all of a sudden, he does not care/

Anonymous said...

Democrats sell their perks to get votes, so there is no contest here. It is called pandering.

Anonymous said...

There are many here who aren't conservative?!

leighrow said...

annonymous-9:38

I completely agree with you on your comments that these so called conservatives are the biggest hypocrites.

The GOP deserves to lose the election by a landslide if they nominate someone like a Santorum or Gingrich. Two career politicians who made their money pedaling their influence.

If Santorum and Gingrich are your typical Republicans then I think it would be a good thing for the party to fold.

Anonymous said...

If you took all the land available for development in Arizona, you would only develop 15 percent. Everything else is either Indian reservations or federal and state lands. Most of it is not available for growth. This is another reason why the economy in Arizona and southern Utah stinks. Growth is not possible. The government keeps taking more and more land and simply will not let anyone do anything with it. The people that live there get starved out economically. It is a major complaint that Utah and Arizona have against the federal gov't. The feds control so much of the land that none of the resources except tourism are available to the residents.

Indian reservations cover much of the state. Unfortunately, many of them receive lots and lots of federal assistance. While I agree that we have treated them poorly, I'm not convinced that our habit of handing out benefits is very helpful to them. I wish I knew an answer to this problem.

Flagstaff is a perfect example of the inability to grow. Flagstaff, the home of Northern Arizona University, is a beautiful city about 3 hours north of Phoenix in the mountains. It is cool, and almost surely would be larger than its current population, but it is surrounded on all four sides by Indian reservations. It stagnates at the size it is because it cannot produce enough of an economy to grow, nor is there enough room for it to do so.

Although Arizona leans Republican, some areas of the state are Democrat strongholds. The area down around the border where Raul Grigalda is the Representative is an example. In 2008 Raul was given a run for his money by a 28 year old female rocket scientist. Wish she had won!

AZ

Anonymous said...

I meant to say that the economy is bad in Northern Arizona because of the feds. The economy in Arizona is bad, but it isn't all because of land grabs by the federal gov't.

I also should have said that Raul ran against the 28 year old rocket scientist in 2010.

AZ