reference articles

(under construction, 2/17/05)


What is the opposite of citizen dialogue? Marketing.

For a better understanding of how modern marketing techniques work:

Interviews with Clotaire Rapaille and Frank Luntz -- PBS/Frontline, "The Persuaders"


Below are selected articles related to the conceptual division of the US, politically, geographically, and culturally, into "Red" states and "Blue" states.


A Tale of Two Legacies (The Economist)

The best predictor of Republicanism among whites is not income, but church attendance.


"Americans are three times as likely to believe in the Virgin Birth of Jesus (83 percent) as in evolution (28 percent)."

Nicholas Kristof (NYT, 8.15.03)


Across a Great Divide (Peter Schneider/NYT 3.13.04)

"The war in Iraq has made the Atlantic seem wider. But really it has had the effect of a magnifying glass, bringing older and more fundamental differences between Europe and the United States into focus.

These growing divisions -- over war, peace, religion, sex, life and death -- amount to a philosophical dispute about the common origins of European and American civilization. Both children of the Enlightenment, the United States and Europe clearly differ about the nature of this inheritance and about who is its better custodian."


The Rise of the Creative Class (Richard Florida)

"Different classes of people have long sorted themselves into neighborhoods within a city or region. But now we find a large-scale re-sorting of people among cities and regions nationwide, with some regions becoming centers of the creative class while others are composed of larger shares of working-class or service-class people."


Sprinkler Cities (David Brooks)

"Sprinkler Cities are generally the most Republican areas of the country. In some of the Sprinkler City congressional districts, Republicans have a 2 or 3 or 4 to 1 registration advantage over Democrats. As cultural centers, they represent the beau ideal of Republican selfhood, and are becoming the new base—the brains, heart, guts, and soul of the emerging Republican party. Their values are not the same as those found in either old-line suburbs like Greenwich, Connecticut, where a certain sort of Republican used to dominate, or traditional conservative bastions, such as the old South. This isn't even the more modest conservatism found in the midwestern farm belt. In fact, the rising prominence of these places heralds a new style of suburb vs. suburb politics, with the explosively growing Republican outer suburbs vying with the slower-growing and increasingly Democratic inner suburbs for control of the center of American political gravity."


One Nation, Slightly Divisible (David Brooks)

"Are Americans any longer a common people? Do we have one national conversation and one national culture? Are we loyal to the same institutions and the same values? How do people on one side of the divide regard those on the other?"


The case for granularity in social change is made by the article below:

The 2000 Census showed gay couples living in 99.3 percent of the counties in the United States -- which has produced a tremendous shift in social attitudes over the past decade. (pdf)


Richard Florida, "Creative Class War"

"...In the wake of 9/11, Washington has inspired the fury of the world, especially of its educated classes, with its my-way-or-the-highway foreign policy. In effect, for the first time in our history, we're saying to highly mobile and very finicky global talent, "You don't belong here."

"...Republican leaders like Tom DeLay and Dick Armey were beginning, during the early 1990s, to articulate the cultural and political antagonism Red America felt towards the emerging creative-class culture. But the politician who most skillfully spoke to these grievances was George W. Bush."



Additional articles and essays:

The New American Dream (Richard Florida)

America and the Illusion of the Melting Pot (Brooks)

Additional notes on Red/Blue

Additional notes on Religion



reference books