The always repugnant Walter Russell Mead on census data showing blacks moving from the north to the south:
Two milestones in the long, painful decline of the blue social model were reached this week and reported, of all places, in the pages of the very éminence grise of the monde bleu: the New York Times.
The first was a piece of national and historical news: The Census reported that waves of blue state blacks fled the stagnant job opportunities, high taxes and rotten social conditions of the mostly blue northern states to seek better lives for themselves in the south.[…..]
When whites leave failing blue cities and states, the pundits call this racism: all those white Californians fleeing Nancy Pelosi’s utopia for less ambitious jurisdictions where ordinary people can do things like get jobs and buy homes are clearly pathetic trailer trash hicks too dumb, too selfish and above all too racist to understand the gloriously multicultural blue beauty of California today.
So what are we going to call the young, educated Blacks making similar choices? Dumb cracker racists?
I guess I didn’t know that forcing urban blacks to live in designated areas and then red-lining and service-denying these areas into unlivable hell-holes was a “blue social policy”. I didn’t know that the free trade policies that gutted the rust belt industrial base were “blue social policies”. And, silly me, I’ve always thought of the Civil Rights Act that improved life for
black people everyone in the south as a liberal social policy, given that liberals supported it and conservatives opposed it.
Also too, his numbers are stupid; he’s excited that “17 percent of the Black flight from Big Blue is from the Empire State”. The Empire State’s population is about 17 percent of “Big Blue” (he doesn’t define “Big Blue” so I can’t say the exact percentage, but it should be about one-sixth), so there’s nothing disproportionate there.
Hanson closes with a bizarre anti-Bob Herbert screed for some reason, which is probably what prompted Sully’s hearty heh-indeed.
Finally, why on earth are people like Walter Russell Mead and Victor Davis Hanson treated as “serious intellectuals”? They come from an academic background and are nobodies in that world.
The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik
Because they punch Hippies, Doug. That’s all you need to be ‘serious’ in America anymore. Long as you hate the goddamn Libz enough, anyone can be serious.
I can’t believe someone who got his ass whipped by the War Nerd is taken seriously by anyone.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
They shouldn’t be, certainly. But they do punch the DFH, and it’s not like the right is replete with intellectual heft.
Bob Herbert is black.
I expect the next installment in Mead’s series to be a Friedmanesque tale about how these newly-relocated blacks are spontaneously showing up on the doorsteps of affluent white families, asking to be taken back as slaves.
It always amazes me to see the right use a group they fear and loathe to prove to themselves that their ideology makes sense.
What they seem unwilling, perhaps unable, to understand is that institutional racism exists everywhere in this country and does not disappear in blue states.
But of course instead of having any solutions for such endemic problems, they just write snark (“ha ha, look at the darkies leaving those morons who like and support them!”).
Yeah, that’s real funny motherfuckers.
Obstacle Schnoz moved to the Daily Beast.
Everyone I know who left Massachusetts did it for one of two reasons: Family, or Climate. Never politics.
The Red states tend to be warmer.
I refuse to click on Sully, but I saw the link is named “voting red with your feet.” Only problem is that a growing African-American population in the southern states will likely have the opposite effect, turning some southern states blue. For example, see North Carolina in the 2008 presidential election.
Ann B. Nonymous
I thought Sullivan had departed the Atlantic’s vale of tears for the more sulfurous air of a Tina Brown operation.
A black New Yorker who moves to Macon is suddenly going to be comfortable with Deacon Erickson’s all-white church and all-night wargaming sessions, and switch her vote to Saxby Chambliss. Yes, that’s plausible.
yeah. that was pretty terrible (and too fucking long. what is with people writing these endless meandering blog posts?).
and not surprisingly, my comment asking him for evidence to prove this statement:
… never appeared.
my wife and i left NY for NC 15 years ago because she worked in a fairly specialized field and our choices at the time were NC, northern NJ, or CA. NC won.
we certainly didn’t move here because we wanted to promote GOP politics.
Also, the part of the population that is educated at Harvard, MIT or one of the other colleges/universities has the god damned *choice* to move for a better job/lower cost of living. Then their kids will move back, or be sent back, when it turns out that Red State policies don’t include good public and private education.
Walter Russel Meade, Victor Davis Hanson–what’s with these serial killer three banger names?
A “serious intellectual” is one who uses pedantic, high-sounding, pseudo-scholarly rhetoric to “prove” that conservative conclusions are the right ones a priori.
It’s like communism. The pieces of the puzzle didn’t match up like The Holy Word said they should, and The Holy Word cannot be wrong, so it’s all the fault of those bad intellectuals discrediting us and we need Real Intellectuals who will make appropriate research so as to reveal The Truth that they’ve known all along… eh, you know how it works.
Yep. I would really like to see some stats on the family issue. Every black person I know who’s moved south from Chicago has done it in part to be close to family there; I’ve noticed this, because every white person I know who’s moved to the south from Chicago has done so shrieking in fear about how they don’t know anyone there and don’t expect to like it at all. No, the plural of anecdote is not data; why do you ask?
“…all those white Californians fleeing…”
If so many Californians are making an exodus from the state, how come the population there has soared over the past couple of decades (presently 37+MM – a major factor in the state’s problems) ?
Does Mead think it is all entirely white folks “fleeing”, and being replaced (entirely)
by mongrelized Mexican wetback gangster anchor-baby welfare-cheatsLatinos?
I’d suggest this clown study up on the Golden State’s demographics a little more before posting sneery trash like this, but then: why let facts ruin a good snark…. ?
That’s central to their point.
One, it proves that VDH is One Of Them, since he was rejected by the Liberal Conspiracy that rules academia. Two, it proves that there’s a Liberal Conspiracy that rules academia, since it rejected VDH.
They’re not being logically consistent, but hey, I hear there’s gambling at Rick’s casino too.
Same with New York, although some preface it with “there are no liberals there”
All grew to regret it.
This guy is my professor. My remorse for choosing to take his class was almost immediate.
I have found that his blog tends to wake me up (by making my blood boil) better than caffeine ever could for all-nighters, so there’s that.
This has been a pattern long understood by historians, sociologists, journalists, and so forth. It has been due to a large variety of issues, and such has been helpfully documented and the subject of museum and web-based learning tools.
It’s one of the reasons why when I hear or read someone reacting to some new depredation by the white-led right wing South (at least in any discussion vaguely serious) by saying ‘let the South go’ or some such, I point out that the white right neo-Confederates don’t deserve it, nor does the majority of African Americans deserve to suffer under their rule.
Or when people talk of “Southerners”, I note that the term seems to apply exclusively to neo-Confederates or whites in general, whereas blacks, Latinos, and all the other groups are “Southerners” too. Whenever region is relevant to a discussion.
If anyone sensibly wants to give the white neo-Confederate right, take away from them all the good lands and resources, and give them some shitty badlands or something. And leave the other whites, our Southern African Americans, and Latinos, and everyone else with the area they deserve.
Amanda in the South Bay
I think certain pseudo intellectuals are still stuck in some sorta 2002-2003 era timewarp, where its always a bright sunny Roveian realignment day.
Its a man bites dog story-“you mean those pesky liberals aren’t promoting policies that are good for minorities?” Despite it being totally inaccurate.
@Comrade DougJ: I always assumed their middle names were in homage to their favorite black NBA players. No?
I took a class Mead “taught” at Bard. I could go on- at length!- but suffice it to say that it was about as enlightening as you would expect.
@PeakVT: One of my great regrets is that I passed up several opportunities to cruise over to Mississippi and see R.L. Burnside live. “You See Me Laughin'”, a documentary about Hill Country bluesmen, is a must see also, too.
As a Texan I tend to agree with this. We got our fair share of low taxation/run from the darky types in the 80’s, but most immigrants these days bring their politics with them. They change the state more than the state changes them.
I have always adored being told by white persons what black people think or feel. As a black person, I fully understand that this input is required before I can comprehend our culture’s motivations to do things. So, thank you, old white dude with a column. Without you, I would be aimlessly wandering, not fully expressing my blacktitude enough.
People move for jobs, for family reasons or because they just want to move back to where they grew up, moron. And many black people aren’t from the fucking South. I swear I hate people.
Victor Davis Thucydides Hanson is a fairly well respected historian of the ancient world, and does a good job of writing history in a way that puts the reader in the middle of the Third Punic War for example.
The question is why anyone thinks that this gives him special insight into modern day health care policy, social mores, etc.
I agree that VDH is stupid, but I don’t see where he entered this discussion.
@Rheinhard: Because they have a really, really short bench.
Yes, he does think the “real” white people are being replaced by mongrelized non white people. Its sort of the same argument they make when they say that “if it weren’t for women’s votes and the non white vote” Democrats would never get elected. The point is that only some people count as real people. I believe the white cop who helped frame OJ Simpson, Mark Furman (?) moved out of California and specifically that the exodus of sucking at the government teat/retired police officers to cheaper places post retirement has long been a sign of the impending apocalypse for the white-flight-is-righters. Meanwhile the rest of us are saying “please, take our racist early bird special seekers, whether in Florida or Nevada or wherethefuckistan.
Got in a link to Sully though … whew. Thank you for the very important information.
What is that, trochaic trimeter? Is there a poet in the house?
Doug, you’re right. They should no more be considered “serious intellectuals” than you, John or Tom should. A job in academia doesn’t necessarily make one an intellectual.
Yeah, I like that one. Might as well say that if it weren’t for the white male vote, Republicans would never get elected. Make that argument out loud and then cover your ears as they squeal high enough to break windows.
I don’t think they don’t count them as “real people,” but they believe that white men have a birthright in America that other people aren’t entitled to. This is “their” country, and if women and nonwhite people are prospering, it’s only through the good graces of the white males.
It’s the three names. Constantly using your middle name sounds “formal”.
One of the more curious things about WRM (former prof of mine) is that he calls himself a Democrat. So he’s like a 2nd generation Kaus, I guess. And although some see him as an academic, he never went to grad school (something he’s quite proud of) so it’s a slight misnomer. I hope Doug J won’t mind me saying that I sent the link to him this morning, and I wrote a post of my own about the brilliance of WRM.
Yes, and in Victor’s case, just imitating a true intellectural like C.S. Lewis would … uh, give the right impression?
Just Some Fuckhead
As one of the foremost intellectuals on this site, I feel compelled to point out that I do not work in academia.
Scum rises to the surface.
In less pithy terms, because deplorable people are looking for someone to justify their deplorable beliefs.
And putting Church in your name doesn’t make you a decent human being.
This sounds like the usual error of assuming one-state, one color. (Insert “We are a nation of purple” map here)
I wonder if someone did a county by country breakdown of these migration patterns and compared them to the patterns of people leaving those southern counties… if this conclusion would hold up
I can’t speak for the other southern states, but North Carolina became an attractive place to live and a strong economy through pouring tobacco money into a wolrd class state university system, which in turn caused R&D to locate here and provide high paying jobs.
It wasn’t because of low taxes or lack of unions but in spite of it. If lack of unions and low taxds were they key, Mississippi and Alabama would be economic powerhouses.
Oh, and yes, warmer weather. Also. Too.
Oh, and you know what Charlotte did?
It raised taxes (OMG!!!!) to build COMMUNIST LIGHT RAIL!!!! Nooooooo!
We might even have a Kenyan Marxist SUBWAY someday! Will no one save us from tyranny??
@onthathill: You will win ten internets if you ask Professor Mead why he looks like an Oompa Loompa.
North Carolina has indeed thrived by pursuing come “blue social policies”. The same is true to a lesser extent of Georgia. And that’s where I suspect northerners are moving, to Charlotte and Atlanta, not to Mobile and Lafayette.
BTW, I ran into the attached link via The Atlantic‘s blog: it uses those annoying things known as facts and figures to point out that Sunbelt migration – and one has to presume that the color of said migrants is, in this case, irrelevant – doesn’t necessarily lead to all-that-improved economic prospects.
IOW, Population Growth does NOT equate to Economic Growth
And Mr. Mead should note that California, apparently in spite of the epidemic of White Flight he is so ready to sneer at, is one of the productivity leaders among the states.
And Fairfax County, VA Beach, Raleigh, etc.
The beautiful thing about that is that once the Floridization of the south Atlantic coast is complete, Democrats will no longer need to pander to dipshit rustbelt voters who ask about flag pins and “ground zero mosques” to win elections.
Hell one of the proudest moments for me as a resident of Charlotte was when “Americans for Propserity” got their asses beat in a referendum to repeal the sales tax increase and stop construction of the LYNX system. Which, btw, has FAR exceeded ridership projections, and is actually double what they expected.
Read the wikipedia article. It is a huge success of urban planning and good social policy.
And I’m sure those southern states will greet them with open arms. Nothing would make those lily white southern bells happier than to have a bunch of blue collar beer swilling northern state negros pile in next door, with their rape music and their Ebonics and their drug use and their fornicating.
Yes, sir. If there’s one complaint I’ve heard all too often in my Texas suburban community, it’s “Why aren’t there more black people in the neighborhood?”
The Red States are going to give all those poor dusky skinned migrant workers from the north the same loving embrace that they gave the poor dusky skinned migrant workers from the south. I’m sure Mead will be the first in line doling out the candy and flowers and voter registration cards.
Thing is, black migrants from the other aren’t “poor migrant workers”. They’re by and large solidly middle class. That’s another reason this article doesn’t make sense.
opie jeanne, formerly known as Jeanne Ringland
Idiot article. What white Californians leaving in droves? I demand a headcount! Or at least a link to a respectable article on the subject.
We did leave California to be near our kids in Washington which is just as blue a state, and it had nothing to do with Pelosi. California still is a paradise compared to most places. We go back to visit family quite often.
Just Some Fuckhead
We had an African American family move into our neighborhood and it was very tense the first few months as we tried to make small talk and exchange pleasantries. It’s been a lot better since we stopped all pretense and just began casting fearful looks at each other over the fence.
@PeakVT: Where’s the damn like button?
Well, they are until they lose their jobs. The relaxed trade rules that shipped all the mid-western industrial jobs to China in the ’00s set us up for a lot of our unemployment woes. It was the same shift in trade rules with Mexico that created the undocumented immigrant explosion of the ’90s.
Admittedly, the guy moving down from Ohio in his ’03 F-150 is probably a lot better off than the guy moving up from Mexico City in his thread bare Nikes. But the blue collar jobs you plan to pick up in Texas or Georgia are going to pay about the same no matter where you are from. Unless you’re a skilled tradesman – like an electrician or a plumber – that means $10-15/hr work. Less than $30k / year is definitely on the poor side.
I wouldn’t even say that. He had a couple of halfway decent books on ancient warfare that got a lot of attention when they came out but in the years after they were shown to be flawed in a number of respects and have since largely been superseded.
Um, they’re usually white collar college graduates. It’s their parents that worked in manufacturing, not them.
And automation did more to kill manufacturing jobs than outsourcing. I know that’s more disturbing and more difficult to solve, which is why you never hear politicians talk about it. “Yellow people stole your jobs!” is a much easier sell.
Actually, Mexico and other developing countries shouls be way more pissed at China’s shady trade practices and currency manipulation than we are.
Without it, our laptops and clothing would be assembled in Mexico and Brazil.
Please do go on at length. I’ve always wondered what these wingnut professors are like in front of a class. Do they just rant and rave all the time or what?
joe from Lowell
Ah, Census time.
I always enjoy reading the ruminations of oh-so-American wingnuts who think that the movement of people from the northeast to the rest of the country is a recent phenomenon, introduced to the American experience through the policies of American liberals in the final third of the 20th century.
Hey, look at that! Massachusetts’ population is a smaller share of the total US than it was last time! What a novel development, and oddly enough, one that just happens to prove my ideological assumptions correct.
Even though Hanson has often been factually incorrect when applying examples from ancient Greece to modern affairs, because he writes clearly and comes down on the side of the neocons, he gets to write columns and is imminently quotable.
“I didn’t know that the free trade policies that gutted the rust belt industrial base were “blue social policies”.
no, it was a bipartisan effort. bill clinton and his republican buds got NAFTA through. a majority of dems voted against it, but it was not enough. notably, ted kennedy and john kerry voted for it.
paul krugman helped give the free-traders some intellectual respectability, and tom friedman supplied some very bad analogies and generally beat the drum HARD for anything that called itself “free trade”
me, i was in the union, IBEW. friedman and krugman kept TELLING us that we would all become knowledge workers. i actually did, but I KNEW that bubba and billy bob were never going to be designing web sites or programming routers. how did i know that…?
you see sir, i knew bubba. i worked with bubba. bubba was a friend of mine.
and you sir, are no bubba.
next time you ask why blue collar and union people often vote rethug, see the above.
you sir, are no bubba.
I wasn’t aware that it was commonly alleged that people moving from Chicago to Dallas to find work are racists. Did Professor Mead have a source to back up this contention?
The Other Chuck
California attracts more venture capital dollars than almost every other red state put together.
“Nancy Pelosi’s Paradise” the best you got punk? We own you bitches.
Jeez! Walter Mead is a professional academic? And still gets blogspace to crank out tripe like this? (I just finished RTWT)
Maybe his ruminations on foreign policy make more sense (they should: it’s cited as his field of specialty) – but this “Black and Blue” stuff would be a disgrace coming from Joe The Blogger, still less a respected (?) academic.
Assuming facts not in evidence, dubious extrapolation of statistics, guesses at motivation presented as facts, a dearth of citations: one wonders what Mead would say if one of his students presented a screed like this to him as a class paper?
But then, to a certain class of right-wing “intellectual”, hippie-punching and librul-bashing seems to be its own reward: intellectual standards be damned….
@Blue Carolinian: NAFTA was a huge opening to pursue such @Zifnab:
Actually they did. The African Americans returning to the South were those economically able to relocate, very likely to buy a home, and as anonymously entering into bland suburbia as anyone else.
In fact, you heard zero discussion of it ever, mostly because it was a slow and constant process, and also because the South in general was a place to which people were migrating. For a variety of reasons, but cheap land and lax development regulation didn’t hurt.