Tuesday, May 26, 2009

So It's Not Just Me: Demographic Changes in the GOP

Well, the polls and surveys are being taken, and as we've all seen the GOP has taken a beating lately. But what demographic group has fled the GOP in the greatest proportion to turn a once deadlocked party race in 2001 to a 53%/39% dominant position for the Democrats? The young? the poor? Liberals? The unchurched? Nah, they all came in second behind:

College graduate:

Dropping 10 points from 47% to 37%, nothing gave you a better indication that someone may have left the GOP behind than the fact that they were educated.

And here sometimes I thought it was just me. But it isn't, is it? We've watched the George Bushes, Sarah Palins and Joe the Plumbers, and listened to what comes out of their mouths, and before our ideological or religious biases even get a chance to enter the interpretation our cerebrum is going "THIS PERSON IS FUCKING STUPID!"

And we're not going to take it any more.


ScienceAvenger said...

OK Alex, you want it, you got it: you're banned. Go find another blog for your "I know what you are but what am I?" style of postings, preferably one run by teenagers who would appreciate such insights.

Troublesome Frog said...

Maybe it's the bleeding heart liberal in me, but I had really hoped that rehabilitation would work. For a while, Alex seemed like a prime candidate to be shaped into a productive contributor to political discourse. So sad.

memphisto said...

You realize, of course, that the fact that college grads are fleeing God’s party is because of the liberal indoctrination they are receiving in those schools. To think that educating yourself, getting a degree, making more money, or having a broader view of the world is better than just buying into what you learn in church and what you’re told over breakfast at the local Greasy Spoon is the height of ELITISM.

Of course, the other side of that argument is that if you are going to maintain egregious power in a democracy you are threatened by people who have been taught to question and think for themselves and have knowledge of the tools for research and deliberation. The natural solution is to devalue learning and intelligence at every opportunity. Thus the GOP continues to dwindle to the cynical manipulators of the stupid and easily led and the stupid and easily led.

The irony comes not from this dichotomy but from the fact that human history is rife with examples where the intelligent and educated have spent so much time having reasoned debates over complex issues that the manipulators and manipulated have outnumbered any of their particular factions.

Doppelganger said...

"This person is fucking stupid!"

I remember thinking - no, yelling - quite nearly that very sentiment the very first time I heard Rush Limbaugh's show back in 1992.

It is pretty clear that conservatives simply do not like educated people or education in general. We see it the highest levels and I've been seeing it in my local paper, where a local right-wing wannabe state legislator has been peppering the letters to the editor section with denigrations of the 'pinheads' who claim pollution is bad and the 'librals' who think we rely too much on oil...

ScienceAvenger said...

Memphisto said:

"Thus the GOP continues to dwindle to the cynical manipulators of the stupid and easily led and the stupid and easily led."

That's fabulous.

Doppleganger, I think it boils down to the basics: Conservatism is about sticking with the tried and true. With technology and social mores moving more rapidly than ever before, the tried and true is very often cumbersome, inefficient, and sometimes downright damaging. Conservatives can change, but only slowly. Society is now demanding that they change faster, and their philosophy is simply not capable of doing so.

Doppelganger said...

Good point.