I have been looking at a lot of maps lately. I mean, I love maps, so that is not that strange, but as I keep hearing people throw around incredible accusations about who is to blame for the state of the Union – much of it falling on this seemingly arbitrary (or… is it?) Red v. Blue or “Liberal” v. “Republican” divide that seems to have a real geographic basis. As we head into this Presidential election I have heard the most outrageous claims about who is better for America and who is not. I am particularly amused by hearing people call our Eisenhower Republican President a socialist. And though those who need to understand this most will not listen I thought I might offer up the definition of what socialism actually is:
This could not be less accurate in terms of the American sociopolitical circumstances. If anything could be said with any degree of accuracy, it would be more to say that those all dirty Liberals are interested in seeing the means of production benefit the whole. Which, by the way, Jesus was 100% all about. And, by the way, Obama is not.
Inspired by the ire I wanted to look at some maps and check out some geographic trends. You know, between those Red and Blue states. What really differentiates them? Let’s see… We will start with our baseline: Red v. Blue. [ps: not one of these maps is mine. Check their credits.]
How about average IQ? In spite of my own issues with IQ testing and labeling, I will go here. And remind y’all that population greatly influences averages, so the big population states are at a terrible disadvantage. Or something.
Huh. Well, you know, tests can be so biased. Perhaps we should look at familiarity with the world. I keep hearing how the Liberals are all about apologizing and stuff, and that they really don’t know anything about how the world works. It is probably because they never travel. I understand when you do not get out much, you are more likely to offend people. Where are all of America’s passport holding travelers?
Never you mind. How about we look at healthy living, because obviously all those opponents of universal healthcare must be the healthiest among us.
Well, you know those scandalous liberals are all about spending way more than they can afford. So let’s take a look at the amount of federal funding (Pork, if you will) per dollar of tax paid by all these states.
This map would be unsatisfying to Tufteists because the aesthetics interfere with the message, making it a bit challenging to extrapolate, so why not just look at those states sucking the most aggressively off the federal teat listed at the bottom of the image.
Or look at this other pretty map below.
Huh. So it appears that us welfare-abusing, tree-hugging, socialism-loving, big-spending liberals might not exactly be…
Surely though, we have lost our family values, right? I mean, we are for such big government and no personal rights and liberties, we surely would endorse rules and regulations on an individuals right to choose.
Oh, wait. I must have said that wrong. But surely those states that oppose a woman’s right to choose would then be sure to take care of all those children. Right?
Gee. That is peculiar. But who cares about that? I mean it is only data based on facts, and we already know we should not let our policies be dictated by facts. So let’s get way more to the heart of the matter and look at how immoral all those gay-loving, marriage wrecking liberal states are. I mean, really, they are trying to ruin the sanctity of marriage! The Horror!
Erm…. well, I am sure there is some statistical explanation for that data. Because everyone know those Blue states are bastions of immorality. They boo God there, I hear. I mean, I am sure that the First Amendment and the Free Exercise Clause are not really all that serious. Whatever. Let’s get back to the immorality of those god-haters.
Hmmmm. This is interesting.
Remember, I love maps. But also remember I am not stupid. I know maps can lie just as much as selective data. So people who don’t want to see this information will claim I have painted an unfair picture and look away. And that is okay. At least you got to look at a whole lot of purty colors. And TLC will be rerunning that episode of Here Comes Honey Boo Boo in a hot minute.
Because, really, at the end of the day? I am just so damn glad to be living in my long-haired, gay marriage-loving, tax-paying, welfare-approving, healthcare-supporting, triple-digit-IQ-owning, environmentally challenged-but-appreciative, people’s-republic-of-blueness.