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America’s blue states are faring worst under Joe Biden

Free-spending blue states like California face worsening fiscal declines and shortages. Credit: Getty

August 30, 2023 - 4:00pm

Logic may suggest that the parts of America performing well economically would be the first to back the President in office. But in this increasingly bizarre republic, it turns out that the strongest support for Joe Biden lies with the regions — notably the West Coast and the Northeast — that are doing most poorly both economically and demographically.

In contrast, the most pro-Trump and anti-Biden states are flourishing. Take West Virginia, the signature Appalachian state, which ranks as the third most pro-Trump state in the country. As a new report by Aaron Renn notes, over 70% of counties in the south of Appalachia are growing in population, with more than half of the counties now boasting more jobs than pre-pandemic levels. 

The rise of Appalachia is reflective of a broader change taking place between red and blue states. Indeed, Republican states are comfortably outperforming their blue counterparts economically, even though the latter represent the base for Biden and the Democrats. The biggest destination for movers from the largest places losing people — San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York — are sunbelt cities like Atlanta, Houston, and Miami. 

Ironically, Appalachia’s slow and largely unacknowledged rise reflects the cluelessness in the media about the preferences of the American people. CNBC, for example, named the best states to live and work in, using health, “inclusion” and “quality of life” as metrics. Virtually all the states listed — Maine, Oregon, Vermont, Minnesota — are lagging economically; the ones at the bottom of the list include Texas and Florida, states that are booming and gaining people from the supposed “best” places to live.

Even millennials, an apparently critical base for the Democrats, are headed to these same places. Four of the top 10 cities for millennials, in the recent survey, are in the Lone Star and Sunshine States — Austin and Dallas in Texas and Jacksonville and Tampa in Florida. The foreign-born — another critical Democratic constituency — are also headed to the south, southwest and the Mountain states. 

At the same time, the big winners in job growth — a trend that has accelerated since the pandemic — have been solidly red metros like Salt Lake City, Nashville, Austin, Jacksonville, Dallas and Raleigh, while free-spending blue states like New York, California and Illinois face worsening fiscal declines and shortages. By contrast, Texas, Florida and even West Virginia all enjoy large surpluses. 

So why are blue states not turning red? Some of it has to do with cultural issues like abortion which, unlike transgender issues, remains widely unpopular, particularly in blue states. These are also areas dominated by progressive media, which tend to have low church attendance and declining industry threatened by climate policies. 

But how this odd disjunction plays out in 2024 remains unclear. It does not seem likely that the booming red states will credit Biden for their success given that they were in the ascendancy before his election. Unless the Democrats make new inroads in these booming states, they may find themselves oddly like the old Confederacy: outnumbered and lacking the resources to improve their condition. 


Joel Kotkin is the Hobbs Presidential Fellow in Urban Futures at Chapman University and author, most recently, of The Coming of Neo-Feudalism: A Warning to the Global Middle Class (Encounter)

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T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago

As a Leftugee that fled a Blue State to a Red State during Covid, there’s a couple of things for outsiders to know. The US was intentionally designed as a federal republic with primary power vested in the States.  Republicans and Conservatives still believe in this arrangement where a limited Federal Govt resolves overlapping State issues and National Security.  Conservatives proudly identify with their Red State. Democrats and Progressives don’t particularly care about their locale. They now see the nation (and world) through a “lens of interconnectivity.” In other words, they seek unified policy oneness because it allows them to micromanage people outside their sphere and open up the federal purse for their “Public Administration” causes. 

Authentic Christianity is still prevalent in the American South, which is ironically far more racially cohesive than the North and Coastal regions because the South has actual culture.   People in Appalachia are joyful.  Even the poor take pride in what they do have and aren’t primarily driven by resentment like the Progressives up north. Because of this cohesion its generally safer and also cheaper due to the historical outflow of manufacturing.

I expect the Progressives will make every election here out about Abortion even if Abortion is legal in their jurisdiction up to the moment of conception.  Conservative States simply are not going to budge on this issue even if its an election loser because they’re very principled on the topic.  They think Abortion is wrong and no amount of Electoral Pragmatism is going to change that.  So, Progressives will simply pick up and move to Red States, drive up the cost of living, push insane tent city policies and try to bring Red States down to the level of Blue State misery.  That said, I think Progressive Leftigees will find alot more pushback in the South and may find it more difficult to tell everybody what to do and how to think.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

Beyond parody, even for me…

Sid Allen
Sid Allen
10 months ago

Are you addicted to down votes CS?

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Sid Allen

Trust Fund revolutionaries need that dopamine hit anyway they can get it!

Samuel Ross
Samuel Ross
10 months ago
Reply to  Sid Allen

CS is a troll.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Sid Allen

Trust Fund revolutionaries need that dopamine hit anyway they can get it!

Samuel Ross
Samuel Ross
10 months ago
Reply to  Sid Allen

CS is a troll.

Sid Allen
Sid Allen
10 months ago

Are you addicted to down votes CS?

Cole Myers
Cole Myers
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

This is a good take. However, I am skeptical of the notion that progressive/leftist people moving to red states are going to try to bring red states down. My hypothesis is these so called progressive/leftists have grown to be less and less progressive and leftist. I think they became tired of HCOL and weren’t seeing a benefit for themselves paying more in taxes (think of the never-ending homeless problem in Los Angeles, rising theft and vandalism in Portland, etc.). Albeit they may still be anti abortion, pro government welfare programs, they aren’t willing to forego their and their families wellbeing for a few issues like that. They’d rather buy a house twice the size and a fraction of the cost in Texas than in California and not have to see homelessness when going into their neighboring city for a show or a sporting event.

Michael Daniele
Michael Daniele
10 months ago
Reply to  Cole Myers

This is exactly what happened in New Hampshire, I’ve lived through it. MA residents left a very very expensive Democrat controlled state for great real estate opportunities and no state tax. And NH turned from solidly Republican to marginally Democrat (Hillary carried NH by .4%).

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
10 months ago

The price of housing, renting or owning, is turning into a major factor in the lives of many Americans. But, of course, it will be twenty or thirty years before the Uni-Party wakes up and notices.

Apo State
Apo State
10 months ago

Exactly! Leftugees leave blue states because the left’s policies made them unlivable; but when they get to their new red state home, they continue to vote Democrat! It’s rather insane, but in contemporary America, one’s political party has very little to do with “policy” and everything to do with “identity”.
An old friend from grad school recently moved from Florida to Chicago (I know, the other way) because his son (who lives independently in Chicago) is now transgender, and he couldn’t countenance continuing to live in Florida because it’s “NOT SAFE for LGBTQ”.
This is madness. Chicago is not “safe” for ANYONE! It’s all about identity.

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
10 months ago

Americans in Red States are very concerned about this – and I think they should be. Progressives do not seem to be able to connect cause and effect between voting and the effect of voting. My city is usually ruled over by odious pious progressives – which means we have open drug use, crime, stupid and expensive ‘green’ housing requirements, etc. When people would b***h about it to me – I would ask “Did you vote in the municipal election?” If no then my response is “then shut up complaining.” If the answer was they voted progressive then my answer is “ then shut up complaining.” Don’t complain to me about something you voted for – or if you didn’t vote at all. I honestly think a good conservative election strategy would be to say “You know you can lie about who you voted for” so progressives can vote conservative but still pretend to be progressive.

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
10 months ago

The price of housing, renting or owning, is turning into a major factor in the lives of many Americans. But, of course, it will be twenty or thirty years before the Uni-Party wakes up and notices.

Apo State
Apo State
10 months ago

Exactly! Leftugees leave blue states because the left’s policies made them unlivable; but when they get to their new red state home, they continue to vote Democrat! It’s rather insane, but in contemporary America, one’s political party has very little to do with “policy” and everything to do with “identity”.
An old friend from grad school recently moved from Florida to Chicago (I know, the other way) because his son (who lives independently in Chicago) is now transgender, and he couldn’t countenance continuing to live in Florida because it’s “NOT SAFE for LGBTQ”.
This is madness. Chicago is not “safe” for ANYONE! It’s all about identity.

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
10 months ago

Americans in Red States are very concerned about this – and I think they should be. Progressives do not seem to be able to connect cause and effect between voting and the effect of voting. My city is usually ruled over by odious pious progressives – which means we have open drug use, crime, stupid and expensive ‘green’ housing requirements, etc. When people would b***h about it to me – I would ask “Did you vote in the municipal election?” If no then my response is “then shut up complaining.” If the answer was they voted progressive then my answer is “ then shut up complaining.” Don’t complain to me about something you voted for – or if you didn’t vote at all. I honestly think a good conservative election strategy would be to say “You know you can lie about who you voted for” so progressives can vote conservative but still pretend to be progressive.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Cole Myers

Fair. I would draw a distinction between progressives with families and young hipsters looking to “modernize” the old ways of Red States. I’m not claiming Portland was ever “Red” but it became libertarian not unlike Silicon Valley or Austin. Full of startups and trendy, modern amenities. These places appeared to be the future.

Everybody likes coffee shops and breweries but those are typically enterprises started by younger creative types that are socially progressive. Over time, successful progressives start to feel guilty of their wealth. These startups bring business and lead to downtown investment but as local costs rise due to foot traffic, gentrification occurs and inequality develops. Successful progressives believe virtue signaling to social justice causes will wash away their sin of wealth. That is when they get loose with allowances for fear of bad PR. They begin promoting destructive behavior as liberation and signal opposition against issues like loitering laws and etc. Once you have mass loitering you have an uncontrollable downtown and it’s a slippery slope from there.

Last edited 10 months ago by T Bone
Apo State
Apo State
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

Excellent summary of (esp.) Portland; I’m wondering how long it’ll take to see this happen in Austin…

Apo State
Apo State
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

Excellent summary of (esp.) Portland; I’m wondering how long it’ll take to see this happen in Austin…

Kat L
Kat L
10 months ago
Reply to  Cole Myers

The problem is that they don’t believe they are wrong. I want to believe you but know too many progressives.

Michael Daniele
Michael Daniele
10 months ago
Reply to  Cole Myers

This is exactly what happened in New Hampshire, I’ve lived through it. MA residents left a very very expensive Democrat controlled state for great real estate opportunities and no state tax. And NH turned from solidly Republican to marginally Democrat (Hillary carried NH by .4%).

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Cole Myers

Fair. I would draw a distinction between progressives with families and young hipsters looking to “modernize” the old ways of Red States. I’m not claiming Portland was ever “Red” but it became libertarian not unlike Silicon Valley or Austin. Full of startups and trendy, modern amenities. These places appeared to be the future.

Everybody likes coffee shops and breweries but those are typically enterprises started by younger creative types that are socially progressive. Over time, successful progressives start to feel guilty of their wealth. These startups bring business and lead to downtown investment but as local costs rise due to foot traffic, gentrification occurs and inequality develops. Successful progressives believe virtue signaling to social justice causes will wash away their sin of wealth. That is when they get loose with allowances for fear of bad PR. They begin promoting destructive behavior as liberation and signal opposition against issues like loitering laws and etc. Once you have mass loitering you have an uncontrollable downtown and it’s a slippery slope from there.

Last edited 10 months ago by T Bone
Kat L
Kat L
10 months ago
Reply to  Cole Myers

The problem is that they don’t believe they are wrong. I want to believe you but know too many progressives.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

Beyond parody, even for me…

Cole Myers
Cole Myers
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

This is a good take. However, I am skeptical of the notion that progressive/leftist people moving to red states are going to try to bring red states down. My hypothesis is these so called progressive/leftists have grown to be less and less progressive and leftist. I think they became tired of HCOL and weren’t seeing a benefit for themselves paying more in taxes (think of the never-ending homeless problem in Los Angeles, rising theft and vandalism in Portland, etc.). Albeit they may still be anti abortion, pro government welfare programs, they aren’t willing to forego their and their families wellbeing for a few issues like that. They’d rather buy a house twice the size and a fraction of the cost in Texas than in California and not have to see homelessness when going into their neighboring city for a show or a sporting event.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago

As a Leftugee that fled a Blue State to a Red State during Covid, there’s a couple of things for outsiders to know. The US was intentionally designed as a federal republic with primary power vested in the States.  Republicans and Conservatives still believe in this arrangement where a limited Federal Govt resolves overlapping State issues and National Security.  Conservatives proudly identify with their Red State. Democrats and Progressives don’t particularly care about their locale. They now see the nation (and world) through a “lens of interconnectivity.” In other words, they seek unified policy oneness because it allows them to micromanage people outside their sphere and open up the federal purse for their “Public Administration” causes. 

Authentic Christianity is still prevalent in the American South, which is ironically far more racially cohesive than the North and Coastal regions because the South has actual culture.   People in Appalachia are joyful.  Even the poor take pride in what they do have and aren’t primarily driven by resentment like the Progressives up north. Because of this cohesion its generally safer and also cheaper due to the historical outflow of manufacturing.

I expect the Progressives will make every election here out about Abortion even if Abortion is legal in their jurisdiction up to the moment of conception.  Conservative States simply are not going to budge on this issue even if its an election loser because they’re very principled on the topic.  They think Abortion is wrong and no amount of Electoral Pragmatism is going to change that.  So, Progressives will simply pick up and move to Red States, drive up the cost of living, push insane tent city policies and try to bring Red States down to the level of Blue State misery.  That said, I think Progressive Leftigees will find alot more pushback in the South and may find it more difficult to tell everybody what to do and how to think.

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
10 months ago

What is rarely reported is that there are NO Blue States.
There are Red States – and Blue Cities.
Outside of large metropolitan areas the Democrat vote PLUMMETS.
Take a look at this map and you start to get an idea of how America votes.
Election-map-2020.png (2000×1500) (vividmaps.com)

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

Yup. I’d say the hicks should be pretty grateful that the cities save them from themselves.

Aldo Maccione
Aldo Maccione
10 months ago

This attitude worked very well for Hillary “bunch of deplorables” Clinton.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
10 months ago

Many of us ‘hicks’ are wealthy & highly educated but we could see the writing on the wall and left the city, in my case NYC, for a better & saner way of life in the countryside.

Aldo Maccione
Aldo Maccione
10 months ago

This attitude worked very well for Hillary “bunch of deplorables” Clinton.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
10 months ago

Many of us ‘hicks’ are wealthy & highly educated but we could see the writing on the wall and left the city, in my case NYC, for a better & saner way of life in the countryside.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

Yup. I’d say the hicks should be pretty grateful that the cities save them from themselves.

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
10 months ago

What is rarely reported is that there are NO Blue States.
There are Red States – and Blue Cities.
Outside of large metropolitan areas the Democrat vote PLUMMETS.
Take a look at this map and you start to get an idea of how America votes.
Election-map-2020.png (2000×1500) (vividmaps.com)

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
10 months ago

If the UK is any guide, the migrants will move to places with more jobs, less crime and better housing, and then continue to vote for the idiotic policies which led them to move out in the first place.

Last edited 10 months ago by Stephen Walsh
Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

Not to worry. A recent study of migrants to Texas from California found that they were overwhelmingly moving to get away from the lunacy and heavily embraced the politics of their new home.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

You’ll be able to provide a link to that recent study of course?

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

I knew you were going to demand that. I will consume the rest of my morning researching.

Andrew R
Andrew R
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

Funny, how this clown never provides evidence for any of his posts.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Andrew R

Kind of harsh calling Thor a clown just for completely failing to back up his fanciful statements!

Andrew R
Andrew R
10 months ago

You could always provide evidence that you’re not a clown but looking at all your comments, there’s plenty of evidence here to show you that you are indeed an idiot.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
10 months ago
Reply to  Andrew R

To be clear, when I refer to someone as a useful idiot, it has clear historical context. It’s not meant as a slur – more of an observation.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Andrew R

Yet another assertion with no evidence!
Its almost as if you people have no facts to back up your nonsense!!!

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
10 months ago
Reply to  Andrew R

To be clear, when I refer to someone as a useful idiot, it has clear historical context. It’s not meant as a slur – more of an observation.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Andrew R

Yet another assertion with no evidence!
Its almost as if you people have no facts to back up your nonsense!!!

Andrew R
Andrew R
10 months ago

You could always provide evidence that you’re not a clown but looking at all your comments, there’s plenty of evidence here to show you that you are indeed an idiot.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Andrew R

Kind of harsh calling Thor a clown just for completely failing to back up his fanciful statements!

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

Why would you have to research anything? Surely you have this study that you quote so confidently easily to hand?

Andrew R
Andrew R
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

Funny, how this clown never provides evidence for any of his posts.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

Why would you have to research anything? Surely you have this study that you quote so confidently easily to hand?

Matt Hindman
Matt Hindman
10 months ago

Yeah, it’s called I live in Colorado.

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

Here’s the li nk. Migrants grants to Texas from CA 57% conservative, 27% liberal.
https://www.governing.com/now/migration-myths-and-political-change

Last edited 10 months ago by Thor Albro
Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

I knew you were going to demand that. I will consume the rest of my morning researching.

Matt Hindman
Matt Hindman
10 months ago

Yeah, it’s called I live in Colorado.

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

Here’s the li nk. Migrants grants to Texas from CA 57% conservative, 27% liberal.
https://www.governing.com/now/migration-myths-and-political-change

Last edited 10 months ago by Thor Albro
Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

You’ll be able to provide a link to that recent study of course?

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

Not to worry. A recent study of migrants to Texas from California found that they were overwhelmingly moving to get away from the lunacy and heavily embraced the politics of their new home.

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
10 months ago

If the UK is any guide, the migrants will move to places with more jobs, less crime and better housing, and then continue to vote for the idiotic policies which led them to move out in the first place.

Last edited 10 months ago by Stephen Walsh
Bernard Brothman
Bernard Brothman
10 months ago

Blue states will get bluer as fed up right leaning voters leave. Many of those remaining are tied to progressive and protected organizations such as non-profits, large universities and large healthcare organizations.

Daniel P
Daniel P
10 months ago

True, but the other part of that they have not considered, or maybe is at least not discussed, is that with that population shift goes house seats and electoral college votes.

CA, NY, MA etc, are going to keep losing seats and with that, political power.

But notice, nobody wants to talk about it. The blue states keep burying their heads. The red states keep chugging along with only DeSantis taking shots at Newsom and even then only because Newsome too the first shot. I think there is a growing sense of doom around places like NYC, San Fran, LA, Chicago, Baltimore, even Boston. They have been riding along on past glory and established wealth for too long. They failed to nurture it. They became arrogant.

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Wash DC, however, has become America’s wealthiest city in the past decade. This, to me, is obscene, but indicative of the rot in our government that grows like an unchecked cancer.

Daniel P
Daniel P
10 months ago
Reply to  Terry M

Yep. I live in central VA but I work for a DC firm.

If people knew the amount of wealth being created around DC, Northern VA and Southern MD, they would lose their minds.

20 Yrs ago, even 10 yrs ago, Louden County was a rural farm community. Today, it is the wealthiest county in the nation. Fairfax, Arlington, LOADS of money.

The number of millionaires being created on tax dollars is astounding. Go to Loudon, go tour Reston, Herndon, Aldie, go visit Old Town Alexandria or Bethesda. Look at the number of mansions.

I was in Loudon, in Aldie, for a soccer tournament about two weeks ago. Miles and miles and miles of mini mansions and real mansions and not a home to be seen that was not at LEAST $800k. I even saw 4 Lamborghini’s following each other on the road to the fields.

That is why I moved here. The place is swimming in tax dollars that are there to be scooped up. It was a join em instead of trying to beat em strategy. It worked. I make more than double what I made 15 yrs ago doing commercial work. Now, granted, there are annual increases and promotions in that but still.

LOOK at the number of major companies that have located here to support the government. Oracle, Microsoft, Booze Allen, Deloitte, CGI, Northrup, Lockheed Martin, Amazon Web Services, the list is a who’ who of corporate America. Never mind all the small and mid size firms, particularly those that are set up to take advantage of set asides like, woman owned small business, native American owned businesses, you name it. All of them eligible for directed awards worth millions. The biggest bucks are in defense and in the Intel Community but there is money to be made all over.

I think that any American from somewhere else would come here, spend a day or two driving around NOVA and leave asking themselves who serves who here?

Daniel P
Daniel P
10 months ago
Reply to  Terry M

Yep. I live in central VA but I work for a DC firm.

If people knew the amount of wealth being created around DC, Northern VA and Southern MD, they would lose their minds.

20 Yrs ago, even 10 yrs ago, Louden County was a rural farm community. Today, it is the wealthiest county in the nation. Fairfax, Arlington, LOADS of money.

The number of millionaires being created on tax dollars is astounding. Go to Loudon, go tour Reston, Herndon, Aldie, go visit Old Town Alexandria or Bethesda. Look at the number of mansions.

I was in Loudon, in Aldie, for a soccer tournament about two weeks ago. Miles and miles and miles of mini mansions and real mansions and not a home to be seen that was not at LEAST $800k. I even saw 4 Lamborghini’s following each other on the road to the fields.

That is why I moved here. The place is swimming in tax dollars that are there to be scooped up. It was a join em instead of trying to beat em strategy. It worked. I make more than double what I made 15 yrs ago doing commercial work. Now, granted, there are annual increases and promotions in that but still.

LOOK at the number of major companies that have located here to support the government. Oracle, Microsoft, Booze Allen, Deloitte, CGI, Northrup, Lockheed Martin, Amazon Web Services, the list is a who’ who of corporate America. Never mind all the small and mid size firms, particularly those that are set up to take advantage of set asides like, woman owned small business, native American owned businesses, you name it. All of them eligible for directed awards worth millions. The biggest bucks are in defense and in the Intel Community but there is money to be made all over.

I think that any American from somewhere else would come here, spend a day or two driving around NOVA and leave asking themselves who serves who here?

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Wash DC, however, has become America’s wealthiest city in the past decade. This, to me, is obscene, but indicative of the rot in our government that grows like an unchecked cancer.

Daniel P
Daniel P
10 months ago

True, but the other part of that they have not considered, or maybe is at least not discussed, is that with that population shift goes house seats and electoral college votes.

CA, NY, MA etc, are going to keep losing seats and with that, political power.

But notice, nobody wants to talk about it. The blue states keep burying their heads. The red states keep chugging along with only DeSantis taking shots at Newsom and even then only because Newsome too the first shot. I think there is a growing sense of doom around places like NYC, San Fran, LA, Chicago, Baltimore, even Boston. They have been riding along on past glory and established wealth for too long. They failed to nurture it. They became arrogant.

Bernard Brothman
Bernard Brothman
10 months ago

Blue states will get bluer as fed up right leaning voters leave. Many of those remaining are tied to progressive and protected organizations such as non-profits, large universities and large healthcare organizations.

Gerald Arcuri
Gerald Arcuri
10 months ago

Speaking as a conservative in California ( an endangered species ) I can confirm the basic premise of this article. What’s more it proves the behavior of the politically extreme on both end of the spectrum, i.e., facts do not matter, only ideology does. This is a form of stupidity that is hard to challenge. Listen to what Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who saw this form of stupidity firsthand in Nazified Germany, said from his prison cell:

Bonhoeffer on Stupidity (entire quote)
   

( Bonhoeffer was hanged by Adolf Hitler in 1945.)
Taken from a circular letter, addressing many topics, written to three friends and co-workers in the conspiracy against Hitler, on the tenth anniversary of Hitler’s accession to the chancellorship of Germany…
‘Stupidity is a more dangerous enemy of the good than malice. One may protest against evil; it can be exposed and, if need be, prevented by use of force. Evil always carries within itself the germ of its own subversion in that it leaves behind in human beings at least a sense of unease. Against stupidity we are defenseless. Neither protests nor the use of force accomplish anything here; reasons fall on deaf ears; facts that contradict one’s prejudgment simply need not be believed- in such moments the stupid person even becomes critical – and when facts are irrefutable they are just pushed aside as inconsequential, as incidental. In all this the stupid person, in contrast to the malicious one, is utterly self-satisfied and, being easily irritated, becomes dangerous by going on the attack. For that reason, greater caution is called for than with a malicious one. Never again will we try to persuade the stupid person with reasons, for it is senseless and dangerous.
‘If we want to know how to get the better of stupidity, we must seek to understand its nature. This much is certain, that it is in essence not an intellectual defect but a human one. There are human beings who are of remarkably agile intellect yet stupid, and others who are intellectually quite dull yet anything but stupid. We discover this to our surprise in particular situations. The impression one gains is not so much that stupidity is a congenital defect, but that, under certain circumstances, people are made stupid or that they allow this to happen to them. We note further that people who have isolated themselves from others or who live in solitude manifest this defect less frequently than individuals or groups of people inclined or condemned to sociability. And so it would seem that stupidity is perhaps less a psychological than a sociological problem. It is a particular form of the impact of historical circumstances on human beings, a psychological concomitant of certain external conditions. Upon closer observation, it becomes apparent that every strong upsurge of power in the public sphere, be it of a political or of a religious nature, infects a large part of humankind with stupidity. It would even seem that this is virtually a sociological-psychological law. The power of the one needs the stupidity of the other. The process at work here is not that particular human capacities, for instance, the intellect, suddenly atrophy or fail. Instead, it seems that under the overwhelming impact of rising power, humans are deprived of their inner independence, and, more or less consciously, give up establishing an autonomous position toward the emerging circumstances. The fact that the stupid person is often stubborn must not blind us to the fact that he is not independent. In conversation with him, one virtually feels that one is dealing not at all with a person, but with slogans, catchwords and the like that have taken possession of him. He is under a spell, blinded, misused, and abused in his very being. Having thus become a mindless tool, the stupid person will also be capable of any evil and at the same time incapable of seeing that it is evil. This is where the danger of diabolical misuse lurks, for it is this that can once and for all destroy human beings.
‘Yet at this very point it becomes quite clear that only an act of liberation, not instruction, can overcome stupidity. Here we must come to terms with the fact that in most cases a genuine internal liberation becomes possible only when external liberation has preceded it. Until then we must abandon all attempts to convince the stupid person. This state of affairs explains why in such circumstances our attempts to know what ‘the people’ really think are in vain and why, under these circumstances, this question is so irrelevant for the person who is thinking and acting responsibly. The word of the Bible that the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom declares that the internal liberation of human beings to live the responsible life before God is the only genuine way to overcome stupidity.
‘But these thoughts about stupidity also offer consolation in that they utterly forbid us to consider the majority of people to be stupid in every circumstance. It really will depend on whether those in power expect more from people’s stupidity than from their inner independence and wisdom.’
-Dietrich Bonhoeffer, from ‘After Ten Years’ in Letters and Papers from Prison (Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works/English, vol. 8) Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2010. 

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  Gerald Arcuri

Some Donkeys are stupid, some are ignorant, but the leaders and their allies in the media are deliberately obtuse. That is, they are EVIL.

Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden
10 months ago

I’ve noticed that the British press goes to great lengths to defend Biden’s economic record while the entire American middle class labours under punishing levels of household inflation, especially in the high tax regimes of the coasts.

Daniel P
Daniel P
10 months ago

California, NY, MA, all just heading for a crash. They need to crash, crash so hard that they finally acknowledge how foolish they have been.

But before they get there, they are gonna blame the people who left and the states they went to for being selfish and ignorant. They will call those who left rubes, fools and traitors, ignorant. Then they will bash the red states, first on cultural issues, then on the lack of humanity in their government policies and lack of wealth transfers via taxes.

They may even appeal to the federal government to force the red states to change policies that are attracting their populations away, like no state income tax.

But, eventually, when nobody cares or listens anymore, and the pain is so incredibly bad, they will be forced to make changes. Unfortunatly a lot of people will have to suffer, a lot, before that happens.

Android Tross
Android Tross
10 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Watching the US slide into neo-feudalism, I’ve often wondered at the likelihood of a “fugitive state citizen” act in the heart future, along the lines of the fugitive slave laws.

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
10 months ago

It is rarely reported but there are NO Blue States.
There are Red States – and Blue Cities.
Take a look at a map that breaks down the 2016 or 2020 vote by county and you’ll get a better picture of the political make-up of America.
(I tried linking to such a map but my comment disappeared. I’ll post a link in a reply and see it that works.)

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
10 months ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

tumblr_lwzzp8DFEL1r3aqywo1_1280.jpg (1280×825)
2020 U.S. Election Mapped: TrumpLand vs Biden Archipelago – Vivid Maps

Try one of those. It paints a fairly stark picture – and not one you often see depicted in the mainstream

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
10 months ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

tumblr_lwzzp8DFEL1r3aqywo1_1280.jpg (1280×825)
2020 U.S. Election Mapped: TrumpLand vs Biden Archipelago – Vivid Maps

Try one of those. It paints a fairly stark picture – and not one you often see depicted in the mainstream

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
10 months ago

It is rarely reported but there are NO Blue States.
There are Red States – and Blue Cities.
Take a look at a map that breaks down the 2016 or 2020 vote by county and you’ll get a better picture of the political make-up of America.
(I tried linking to such a map but my comment disappeared. I’ll post a link in a reply and see it that works.)

Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
10 months ago

Unfortunately, urban residents appear to be captured and somehow enjoy the increasing and contemptuous decrepitude. People with agency and the means to do so leave, and wonder why they hadn’t done so sooner.

Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
10 months ago

Unfortunately, urban residents appear to be captured and somehow enjoy the increasing and contemptuous decrepitude. People with agency and the means to do so leave, and wonder why they hadn’t done so sooner.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
10 months ago

I think a lot of people simply won’t vote for Trump. Not saying that’s right or wrong, it’s just the reality of the situation. There are some blue cities like San Fran, New York, Washington etc that will never vote red, but IMO many independents would vote red if it were not for Trump. Why the GOP refuses to move on from this guy is mystifying.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Its because they are stupid and he says all the stupid things they want to hear.

Peter B
Peter B
10 months ago

I seem to recall Hillary Clinton testing out that line with the electorate (“the deplorables”). And it didn’t go very well for her.
In fact, the evidence is that the electorate are not stupid as you claim. People who voted for Trump (or Boris Johnson) knew exactly what he was like and did so anyway.
They just show a different sort of intelligence and judgement from what you (and I’m largely as guilty) recognise as “intelligence”. I’d argue that the gut reaction common sense of the UK electorate has spared us a number of bad choices over the past 30 odd years. OK, let’s make that “even worse choices” – no point pretending there were usually good choices on offer.

Last edited 10 months ago by Peter B
Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
10 months ago
Reply to  Peter B

Exactly, a lot of the 2016 vote for Trump was ‘anti-Hillary’ – she’s just toxic and remains so. Now Trump is up against senile Sleepy Joe again. Folks thought a vote for Joe was a vote for ‘moderation’, but didn’t he prove to be a Trojan Horse for Progressivism?! So it will be interesting to see how Trump fares this time. To say the least, the Democrats put forward terrible candidates.

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

If the American public ever learns about the corruption that Biden has been doing he will get less than 40% of the vote – only the most extreme partisans will vote for him.
But the MSM is doing their level best to keep Donkeys and Independents in the dark.

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

If the American public ever learns about the corruption that Biden has been doing he will get less than 40% of the vote – only the most extreme partisans will vote for him.
But the MSM is doing their level best to keep Donkeys and Independents in the dark.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
10 months ago
Reply to  Peter B

Exactly, a lot of the 2016 vote for Trump was ‘anti-Hillary’ – she’s just toxic and remains so. Now Trump is up against senile Sleepy Joe again. Folks thought a vote for Joe was a vote for ‘moderation’, but didn’t he prove to be a Trojan Horse for Progressivism?! So it will be interesting to see how Trump fares this time. To say the least, the Democrats put forward terrible candidates.

Peter B
Peter B
10 months ago

I seem to recall Hillary Clinton testing out that line with the electorate (“the deplorables”). And it didn’t go very well for her.
In fact, the evidence is that the electorate are not stupid as you claim. People who voted for Trump (or Boris Johnson) knew exactly what he was like and did so anyway.
They just show a different sort of intelligence and judgement from what you (and I’m largely as guilty) recognise as “intelligence”. I’d argue that the gut reaction common sense of the UK electorate has spared us a number of bad choices over the past 30 odd years. OK, let’s make that “even worse choices” – no point pretending there were usually good choices on offer.

Last edited 10 months ago by Peter B
Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
10 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

For now, the GOP can’t “move on” from Trump, because to a large extent the GOP *is* Trump. Any opponents within the GOP have yet to find a sufficiently popular alternative.

The “Bushie”, the “country club”, the “libertarian” GOP have all been discredited, for example.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Paul Hendricks

I disagree. He just controls a critical mass of Absolutists that will sabotage the GOP vote if he’s not the candidate. Trump will tank any candidate not him and Trump knows most of us that want to move on will vote for him over Biden anyways. He’s simply better at being President than the current guy.

If it was a two candidate race between Trump and DeSantis…I think DeSantis would eventually pull away. But you have a watered down field that prevents anybody from getting close in poll numbers.

Keep in mind DeSantis has received more negative attack ads than Biden and Trump combined. For all their grandstanding…the Media wants Trump to be the candidate.

Last edited 10 months ago by T Bone
Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

In fact, the indictments against Trump are the ultimate in “attack ads”.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Paul Hendricks

The indictments are a fundraiser for Trump. They’re designed to make him the candidate and suck the air out of DeSantis campaign.

Make no mistake, DeSantis not Trump is the one that scares the Orthodox Progressives.

Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

Maybe that is true about Orthodox progressives and DeSantis–I wouldn’t know.

Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

Maybe that is true about Orthodox progressives and DeSantis–I wouldn’t know.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Paul Hendricks

The indictments are a fundraiser for Trump. They’re designed to make him the candidate and suck the air out of DeSantis campaign.

Make no mistake, DeSantis not Trump is the one that scares the Orthodox Progressives.

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

The media want Trump because Trump draws eyeballs, comments, readers, and viewers. A bit like Harry and Megan in the UK.

Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

In fact, the indictments against Trump are the ultimate in “attack ads”.

Terry M
Terry M
10 months ago
Reply to  T Bone

The media want Trump because Trump draws eyeballs, comments, readers, and viewers. A bit like Harry and Megan in the UK.

T Bone
T Bone
10 months ago
Reply to  Paul Hendricks

I disagree. He just controls a critical mass of Absolutists that will sabotage the GOP vote if he’s not the candidate. Trump will tank any candidate not him and Trump knows most of us that want to move on will vote for him over Biden anyways. He’s simply better at being President than the current guy.

If it was a two candidate race between Trump and DeSantis…I think DeSantis would eventually pull away. But you have a watered down field that prevents anybody from getting close in poll numbers.

Keep in mind DeSantis has received more negative attack ads than Biden and Trump combined. For all their grandstanding…the Media wants Trump to be the candidate.

Last edited 10 months ago by T Bone
Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Its because they are stupid and he says all the stupid things they want to hear.

Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
10 months ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

For now, the GOP can’t “move on” from Trump, because to a large extent the GOP *is* Trump. Any opponents within the GOP have yet to find a sufficiently popular alternative.

The “Bushie”, the “country club”, the “libertarian” GOP have all been discredited, for example.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
10 months ago

I think a lot of people simply won’t vote for Trump. Not saying that’s right or wrong, it’s just the reality of the situation. There are some blue cities like San Fran, New York, Washington etc that will never vote red, but IMO many independents would vote red if it were not for Trump. Why the GOP refuses to move on from this guy is mystifying.

Susan Grabston
Susan Grabston
10 months ago

Evidence from UK is that age is no longer a predictor of more conservative views so there may not be an escalator of Millennials turning to the Republicans. Some sources that I consider ceedible believe the 2024 election will not take place. If Kyle Bass’s Hudson Institute presentation proves correct we could be in WW3, suspending the election. Remember what Niall Ferguson says about world wars – you don’t see them coming. You simple join the dots of multiple conflicts on multiple fronts (and there are 5 fronts now when we include space and cyber) . You are in it before you see it.

Daniel Lee
Daniel Lee
10 months ago

“…it turns out that the strongest support for Joe Biden lies with the regions — notably the West Coast and the Northeast — that are doing most poorly both economically and demographically.”
Connect the dots.

Peter Samson
Peter Samson
10 months ago

Austin and Raleigh are firmly Democratic. See https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/upshot/2020-election-map.html

Kat L
Kat L
10 months ago

Here’s the thing though; Austin, Nashville and Dallas are all blue islands in red seas.

James S.
James S.
10 months ago

Why are Blue states not turning Red? At least in the Northwest, it’s because conservatives are moving out, leaving states like WA bluer and bluer. When they have Idaho, Utah, and Montana to head to, why put up with the failing progressive policies, high taxes, and cost of living of the coastal states?

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago

Evidence-free fantasizing from the Trumpbots.
Hey, you want to go live in Florida or Texas then good for you – but let’s not pretend that West Virginia is now, or ever has been, the land of milk and honey.

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

The civilized joys of “the land of milk and honey” – or at least the best parts – are easily transplanted to almost any rural Burg in America – a coffee shop, good restaurant, ample groceries, a book store and local theater company, high speed Internet, and even lucrative employment. However, the civilized joys of rural life can NOT transplant to these degenerate cities – peace, security, social consanguinity with neighbors, clean air and bucolic vistas, and no riff-raff defecating on your front lawn or mindless neo-socialist activist screaming at you in town.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

“no riff-raff defecating on your front lawn or mindless neo-socialist activist screaming at you in town.”
Has this hayseed ever actually been to a city?

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

Lived for 25 years in downtown Seattle in Pioneer Square, ground zero for the homeless (back before they were the cause de jeur of the progressives). I now live in a rural county north of Seattle

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

Seattle is a wonderful city! Go Hawks!

James S.
James S.
10 months ago

Says someone who probably doesn’t live in Seattle, or has to deal with tent cities, feces on the sidewalks and drug paraphernalia in kids’ parks, or all the other spawn of leftist civic policies.

James S.
James S.
10 months ago

Says someone who probably doesn’t live in Seattle, or has to deal with tent cities, feces on the sidewalks and drug paraphernalia in kids’ parks, or all the other spawn of leftist civic policies.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

Seattle is a wonderful city! Go Hawks!

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

Lived for 25 years in downtown Seattle in Pioneer Square, ground zero for the homeless (back before they were the cause de jeur of the progressives). I now live in a rural county north of Seattle

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago
Reply to  Thor Albro

“no riff-raff defecating on your front lawn or mindless neo-socialist activist screaming at you in town.”
Has this hayseed ever actually been to a city?

Steven Carr
Steven Carr
10 months ago

West Virginia has a Democrat Senator.

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
10 months ago

The civilized joys of “the land of milk and honey” – or at least the best parts – are easily transplanted to almost any rural Burg in America – a coffee shop, good restaurant, ample groceries, a book store and local theater company, high speed Internet, and even lucrative employment. However, the civilized joys of rural life can NOT transplant to these degenerate cities – peace, security, social consanguinity with neighbors, clean air and bucolic vistas, and no riff-raff defecating on your front lawn or mindless neo-socialist activist screaming at you in town.

Steven Carr
Steven Carr
10 months ago

West Virginia has a Democrat Senator.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
10 months ago

Evidence-free fantasizing from the Trumpbots.
Hey, you want to go live in Florida or Texas then good for you – but let’s not pretend that West Virginia is now, or ever has been, the land of milk and honey.