Look: I am eager to learn stuff I don't know--which requires actively courting and posting smart disagreement.

But as you will understand, I don't like to post things that mischaracterize and are aimed to mislead.

-- Brad Delong

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Everything that appears on this blog is the copyrighted property of somebody. Often, but not always, that somebody is me. For things that are not mine, I either have obtained permission, or claim fair use. Feel free to quote me, but attribute, please. My photos and poetry are dear to my heart, and may not be used without permission. Ditto, my other intellectual property, such as charts and graphs. I'm probably willing to share. Let's talk. Violators will be damned for all eternity to the circle of hell populated by Rosanne Barr, Mrs Miller [look her up], and trombonists who are unable play in tune. You cannot possibly imagine the agony. If you have a question, email me: jazzbumpa@gmail.com. I'll answer when I feel like it. Cheers!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Michigan Primary Results

Mitt Romney won the Michigan Republican primary yesterday by a margin of 41.1% to 37.9%, the remainder going to the rest of the overpopulated field - Herman Cain, Jon Huntsman and others were on the ballot.  Romney and Santorum each gained 11 delegates.

This Huffpo article has an interactive map showing results by county.

The spread in the results is interesting.  Along the west coast of the Lower Peninsula is Michigan's bible belt.  Santorum carried most of those counties by Margins of 10 to 20%.  Kent county, which contains the city of Grand Rapids, it the exception.  Santorum won that county by only 42.4% to 40.3%.  This illustrates the other part of the Michigan dynamic.  Romney did better in urban areas, while Santorum did better in places where cows or deer outnumber the people. Santorum won many more counties, but lost the total vote count.

This population effect shows up in the victory margins of the counties that Romney won.  In the 5 by 2 band of counties that Romney won in the southern part of the state, Romney's take generally decreases while Santorum's generally increases as you move west.  Then, when you reach the bible belt, it flips to Santorum.  Along the Ohio border is a band of sparsely populated counties that Santorum swept.  Monroe, Lenawee and Branch counties have towns of significant size in them, and in those counties Romney did better by a couple of percentage points.

Ron Paul got between 10 and 12% of the vote almost everywhere. This illustrates something about the modern Republican party.  It is an unholy alliance of far-right Christian fundamentalists, pro-business (pseudo-fiscal) conservatives and libertarians - and the cracks are starting to show.  If nothing else, the endless campaign of Republican debates has cast these differences into bold relief.

Logically, the fundamentalists and libertarians should hold each other in contempt.  The libertarians and the pro-business faction can agree on many things, but not isolationism and the gold standard.  To the business crowd, the fundamentalists are prey.

For decades, the Republicans have drawn the religious right into their fold with emotional hot button issues that have very little actual relevance, like abortion and gay marriage.  The recent campaign against birth control has been an over-reach that is finally causing a back-lash.

In my dreams, the Republican party tears itself apart, and becomes a marginalized political minority.  The Michigan results give me hope that this dream might become reality.

H/T to the LW

Cross posted at AB


Prefer Anon said...

In your dreams?

Because the Democrats have shown themselves so capable of holding Wall Street in check? Jon Corzine, Larry Summers, Robert Rubin, Tim Geithner, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Obama himself, what have any of them done to prosecute the gross looting of the middle-class by Wall Street? Excepting maybe Obama, everyone of them has actively abetted it.

But hey, I'm sure you have your own list of Republican liars and useful idiots, so I'll bring it up a level, where has one party rule ever served the people well? For someone that can so ably take-down straw man propaganda like the SS piece in the previous post, I'm always astounded by the lack of critical thinking in regards to the two major parties.

Jazzbumpa said...

PA -

You have concluded things about my position that I neither said, nor implied. Please identify specifics of where my critical thinking faltered.

I come close to loathing the Dems. But that does not lessen the fact that the great majority of clear and present danger comes from the Republicans.

I'm not hoping for one party rule. I'm hoping for a political process that has participants who believe in science, engage in honest debate, are genuinely interested in the well-being of the American people, and which focuses on issues of real importance to society.

The Republicans fail each of these tests.

Over the last 40 years, the Republicans have abandoned conservatism and become regressive reactionaries with no valid political philosophy. Their pandering to the religious right has dragged the discourse far off center. Political dialog for many years now has been between the right and the far right.

If there is valid conservatism in U.S. politics today, it exists in the Democratic party.

In my dream, the new party arises from the left. There is lots of room there.


Prefer Anon said...

Specifics? Well, your dream seemed pretty specific to me. While a marginalized minority isn't necessarily one-party rule, I think we could call it close enough for government work.

More generally, and maybe I've missed these posts, I don't recall any vitriol aimed at the Democratic den of thieves. So, yeah, I think mine was a reasonable inference of your position.

Now with the clarification of your reply I think your argument becomes that once those brutish Republicans are dispensed with, the Democrats themselves will splinter and there will emerge a new true-left to foil the center-crooks? OK, but again if you've ever complained about crooks in the Democrats, I must have missed those posts. And by the way, I think that is incredibly round about way to get somewhere. So round about, I'm doubtful it would lead to where you would prefer. And by the way, how's that left/far-left dichotomy working out for Europe?

Jazzbumpa said...

PA -

See my follow up here.


I routinely refer to the President as B. Hoover Obama, and have called him a corporate shill.

I'm just one guy, with limited time and energy. I can't reasonably be expected to take on every wrong I see in this country, so I concentrate on the worst. If the Rethugs weren't so extreme and so dangerous, I might have the time and inclination for a more balanced approach. Besides, there is more than enough criticism of the Dems floating around out there. I fell no imperitive to join in.

Still - your inference was just that, and not a valid conclusion from what I said. There is no reason to take valid criticisms of the Republicans as in any way support for the Democrats.

As for that European far left dichotomy - if you're referring to The Netherlands or Scandinavia, it's working out quite well, thank you.

It's austerity that is driving most of Europe to the brink. And who supports that kind of thinking here? Republicans.