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Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:55 PM

Obama's Secret Weapon In The South: Small, Dead, But Still Kickin'

One of the neater things I'll stumble over today, I'm betting. I was waffling over whether to put this here or in Science, since there's a lot of that in the article, but hey, it's still election-related as well (or was when it first popped up).

Look at this map, and notice that deep, deep in the Republican South, there's a thin blue band stretching from the Carolinas through Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi. These are the counties that went for Obama in the last election. A blue crescent in a sea of red.

These same counties went mostly blue in 2004 and 2000. Why? Well, the best answer, says marine biologist Craig McClain, may be an old one, going back before the Civil War, before 1776, before Columbus, back more than 100 million years to the days when the Deep South was under water. Those counties, as he writes here, went for Obama because trillions and trillions and trillions of teeny sun-loving creatures died there. He's talking about plankton. That's why the Republicans can't carry those counties. Blame plankton.


You want to talk about things happening a long time ago carrying echoes through to the present day, guh. And to think I was only thinking of stuff like that in terms of a century or so because of Remembrance Day before coming over this.

It's neat how we're shaped by the world sometimes, often in incredibly subtle ways.

17 replies, 1668 views

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Arrow 17 replies Author Time Post
Reply Obama's Secret Weapon In The South: Small, Dead, But Still Kickin' (Original post)
Posteritatis Nov 2012 OP
NV Whino Nov 2012 #1
Webster Green Nov 2012 #2
The Traveler Nov 2012 #3
scarletwoman Nov 2012 #4
JackN415 Nov 2012 #5
Odin2005 Nov 2012 #6
DonRedwood Nov 2012 #7
Wounded Bear Nov 2012 #8
superpatriotman Nov 2012 #9
dixiegrrrrl Nov 2012 #10
bluemarkers Nov 2012 #11
Dark n Stormy Knight Nov 2012 #12
Blue State Bandit Nov 2012 #13
Cal Carpenter Nov 2012 #15
Scurrilous Nov 2012 #14
wakemewhenitsover Nov 2012 #16
demwing Nov 2012 #17

Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:58 PM

1. Makes perfect sense

The fundies don't believe in anything over 600-years old.

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:01 PM

2. Fascinating!

Very cool article. You learn something new everyday.

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:07 PM

3. That is just so cool

and intriguing. It seems we are not only shaped by our environment, but we are shaped by the environment of geological antiquity.

Trav

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:11 PM

4. Fascinating! I'm glad you posted this! (nt)

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:13 PM

5. Very interesting reading

 

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:16 PM

6. One can also see geology at work politically here in the Upper Midwest.

Rural areas with richer farmland, like the Red River Valley of The North and the upper Mississippi Valley (that mass of blue counties where Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois meet), tend to be more liberal than other rural areas

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:20 PM

7. good read!

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:25 PM

8. Thanks for the link!

Love the sciency stuff, especially when you can connect it to real life like that one does......

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:31 PM

9. Don't forget us in south Florida -

In America's wang He got the whole head and half of the shaft!

Florida's most populated counties voted overwhelmingly for Obama.

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:22 PM

10. Also, that same blue line has high poverty levels

here in Ala.
In other words, lots of black residents who suffered for years under racism and who were denied education, jobs. When I look at the unemployment maps and the poverty maps of Alabama, it follows the same "blue line".

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 03:55 PM

11. don't know if it's a secret weapon

but the edge of the ancient ocean is clearly visible. At my home we have a soil of red clay. 5 minutes away is the sandy soil of that ancient ocean. Right now there is a lot of cotton in that sand.

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:17 PM

12. That is fascinating. Thanks for posting.

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:22 PM

13. Totally geeking on this.

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Response to Blue State Bandit (Reply #13)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:34 PM

15. Me too!

Never used 'geek' as a verb before, but I like it

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:33 PM

14. Very cool!

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:48 PM

16. Incredible article!

ty for posting!

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Response to Posteritatis (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:51 PM

17. Not to bust this cool story

but that crescent sits exactly on the I40/I95 freeway route from Raleigh NC, to Columbia, SC, across I20 to Atlanta, then to Birmingham, and over to Jackson, MS, and then down I55 to New Orleans.

It's possible that the reason people along the freeway voted for Obama is because people who live in areas that get out-of-state visitors are the also the most likely to be introduced to new ideas and concepts, be from other areas themselves, and are the least likely to be able to maintain ignorant prejudices.

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