See these shackles, baby

One of my all-time favorite comments here was:

What would Belfast look like should Obama pass the Wingnut Repatriation Act? I think Stuckey’s and Shoney’s would improve Northern Ireland’s cuisine, but I am willing to be convinced otherwise.

So I’m sympathetic to this in Steven Pinker’s analysis of the red state/blue state thing (h/t reader D):

The historian David Hackett Fischer traces the divide back to the British settlers of colonial America. The North was largely settled by English farmers, the inland South by Scots-Irish herders. Anthropologists have long noted that societies that herd livestock in rugged terrain tend to develop a “culture of honor.” Since their wealth has feet and can be stolen in an eye blink, they are forced to deter rustlers by cultivating a hair-trigger for violent retaliation against any trespass or insult that probes their resolve. Farmers can afford to be less belligerent because it is harder to steal their land out from under them, particularly in territories within the reach of law enforcement. As the settlers moved westward, they took their respective cultures with them. The psychologist Richard Nisbett has shown that Southerners today continue to manifest a culture of honor which legitimizes violent retaliation.

It certainly beats the idiotic Sowell/Bobo Conservative Tragic Vision and less-idiotic-but-too-simplistic Lakoff framing thing that he posits as alternatives.

But, truthfully, how can one talk about why the south in so right-wing without mentioning slavery, Civil Rights, the Civil War, and race? Yet Pinker has written a whole piece, considering lots of explanations for the political divide among states that does exactly this. (I’m blaming Pinker here, who throws “red” and “blue” around, not Nisbett or Fischer, who phrased things in purely cultural terms.)

In Mississippi, 88% of whites vote Republican in presidential, while 95% of blacks vote Democrat (I will try to find a link for this, I read it a few years ago). Aren’t both groups “Southerners”?

I realize I dwell on this all the time, but sometimes I simply can’t believe how superficial and willfully naive our political discourse is. Maybe if I could forget about slavery and believe that “Manifest Destiny” wasn’t just a way to rationalize genocide, I could believe in America Fuck Yeah the way our pundits (almost every one of them, right and left) do. But it nauseates me that all these clowns think they’re asking the “tough questions” when in reality they ignore the obvious, unpleasant truth at every single turn.

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244 replies
  1. 1
    YellowJournalism says:

    DougJ: Bringin’ sexy back to the blog.

  2. 2
    Raven says:

    What’s the question?

  3. 3
    Spatula says:

    “culture of honor” in the South.

    Yeah, right.

    lol

  4. 4
    Cargo says:

    Ignoring obvious and unpleasant truths is precisely the job of pundits and journalists, and it pays better the more effectively you can ignore and obfuscate those truths.

  5. 5
    schrodinger's cat says:

    I don’t know much about Pinker’s professional bonafides, but he is lionized by the Burkean conservative set, especially he gets lots of links from Sully, that immediately makes me suspicious.

    BTW Bobo has outdone himself this morning. Shorter Bobo, vote for Romney, or else your country gets it.

  6. 6
    PeakVT says:

    But, truthfully, how can one talk about why the [S]outh in is so right-wing without mentioning slavery, Civil Rights, the Civil War, and race?

    You can’t, unless you’re writing a piece of clickbait or applying for a job at Slate.

  7. 7
    martha says:

    @Spatula: You obviously did not have a crazy southern grandmother. Some stereotypes are closer to the truth than people want to believe in 2012.

  8. 8
    Chases ur says:

    I think the slightly more nuanced critiques assert that the “culture of honor” thing is a vestige of the deep South’s and Tidewater’s cavalier/Norman obsession with hierarchy of status, and the Appalachian paranoid, violent, tribal thing is from the borderlands/Scots Irish history of being … uh, disadvantaged, paranoid, violent, and tribal.

  9. 9
    Spatula says:

    @martha:

    Martha: Your crazy southern grandmother was honorable, or what do you mean?

    My point is that taken as a whole, I do not find Southern “culture” in any way honorable. Rather the opposite.

    I’m sure there are lovely individuals sprinkled throughout, however.

  10. 10
    Mudge says:

    Few blacks have a Scots-Irish heritage.

  11. 11
    Napoleon says:

    I think Pinker is a little simplistic. I would urge everyone to read this book if you find the subject interesting:

    http://www.amazon.com/American.....0143122029

  12. 12
    Cassidy says:

    Aren’t both groups “Southerners”?

    No. One group is white. The other is not.

    “culture of honor.”

    This is also not true. It’s a culture of percieved insult. Honor means “my ability to correct said insults”.

  13. 13
    StringOnAStick says:

    I once dated a highly educated scion of southern gentility who had escaped to the west for some reason. I ended it after listening to him deliver a long, impassioned lecture about how the KKK was really more of a social organization for keeping the peace, not anything racist at all.

  14. 14
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    Aren’t both groups “Southerners”?

    I know, right? I’ll be impressed when journalists / columnists finally get over the “person = white male” assumption.

    Not holding my breath, though. Lots of white males (including me, before I caught a clue) get freaked out when called on that.

  15. 15
    grrljock says:

    The US continually confounds me with its contradictions. How can such a great country produce so many good people and things and yet have such an immature political discourse? I didn’t grow up here in the States, but have lived here for more than 20 years. I knew about slavery in my head, but it was really not until I read Isabel Wilkerson’s masterpiece, The Warmth of Other Suns that I got a sustained, visceral reminder of what it was like for blacks not too long ago. A bare inkling of how truly other they were, just a generation away from mine. And the fancy neurologist professor totally missed that. Shameful.

  16. 16
    jheartney says:

    I’ve long advocated Albion’s Seed (by David Hackett Fischer) as an essential work in understanding American politics. Slavery, the civil war and their aftermaths are hugely important, but to really get at the root of it you need Fischer’s analysis.

  17. 17
    Zifnab25 says:

    But, truthfully, how can one talk about why the south in so right-wing without mentioning slavery, Civil Rights, the Civil War, and race? Yet Pinker has written a whole piece, considering lots of explanations for the political divide among states that does exactly this. (I’m blaming Pinker here, who throws “red” and “blue” around, not Nisbett or Fischer, who phrased things in purely cultural terms.)

    Probably because it is low-hanging fruit and easily dismissed as “playing the race card”. A lot of this “Oh, they’re just Scot-Irish sheep herders living in an honor based society” thing is the academic wink-nudge-dog-whistle that tries to separate the civilized folk from the barbarians. “Rural Scotch-Irish” has the same ring as “Urban Youth”, which is to say its a nice way of saying “Rednecks are different”.

    It’s terrible stereotyping either way. Alabama has a sizable aerospace industry and medical community, as does Florida. Texas has a number of tech center cities and tons of engineers. There are also numerous northern transplants living throughout the Gulf Coast – including such notables as the Bush Family and Exxon.

    Its not like the NE or the west coast are devoid of racism, either. Consider the NYPD and LAPD respectively – both notoriously racist. Honestly, I think there’s less of a divide between North and South than people like to believe. The real difference is rooted in political tribalism and brand recognition. Democrats poll well in California because the brand is strong and the politicians are all veterans. Republicans poll well in Texas because the brand is strong and the politicians are all veterans.

    Mitt Romney is running every-so-slightly to the right of where John Kerry was running 8 years ago, and they aren’t going to carry any of the same states. That little (R) against Romney’s name is what’s giving him half the country’s votes. At this point, its just reflexive. Self-identified Republicans are going to vote Republican because they are Republicans.

  18. 18
    Raven says:

    @grrljock: And yet some of the folks she writes about came back.

  19. 19
    Ben Franklin says:

    that Southerners today continue to manifest a culture of honor which legitimizes violent retaliation.

    Thar he bloes…..a rather poorly disguised threat.

    Redneckolypse !

  20. 20

    Kind of tangential, but I had one of those eye-opening moments when I read in a K. Ross Toole history that Montana experienced a huge influx of White settlers from the deep south, going up the Mississippi and Missouri to escape the war. So even as far removed from Mason-Dixon as this area is, it still has some deeply entrenched Confederate baggage.

  21. 21
    Election Follower says:

    So what does everyone think of Karl Rove and the boys putting ads up in MN, MI, and PA now? If it’s nothing more than a “bluff” then why is Team BO responding with ads of their own in the same states? Is the map expanding perhaps?

    Oh yeah: only SEVEN DAYS LEFT until President-Elect Romney!

  22. 22
    martha says:

    @Spatula: No, I did not find her honorable at all. But, she and her peers believed with all their hearts and souls that the “south” was honorable and they still fighti the Civil War until the day each dies. That is what we are up against. There are many who fight against that upbringing and history, but they are often in the minority. It will take another generation at least and more multiculturalism to soften it to a more benign version of honor.

  23. 23
    gussie says:

    “Its not like the NE or the west coast are devoid of racism, either.”

    I’m so glad that someone finally noticed this.

  24. 24
    Cassidy says:

    Its not like the NE or the west coast are devoid of racism, either. Consider the NYPD and LAPD respectively – both notoriously racist. Honestly, I think there’s less of a divide between North and South than people like to believe.

    I think you’re slightly wrong here. NYPD, LAPD, and any big city PD bigotry seems, to me, to be based on an us against them mentality. They would be bigots towards the others regardless of who the urban population is and it just happens to be AAs.

    In the South, it’s a more visceral dislike of other races regardless of location and class.

  25. 25
    blingee says:

    As usual, can’t figure out exactly wtf the point DougJ is trying to make as he seems to be going off in multiple directions as usual. Maybe he needs to adjust his ADD medication.

    All I know is that DougJ and weather.com suck. CNN still has much better sandy coverage.

    See what I did there? Wink!

  26. 26
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Spatula: Honor in this context is a very medieval, code duello sort of thing. It is not meant in the sense of have an internal code or standard of conduct.

  27. 27
    Raven says:

    @Zifnab25: Georgia has some fairly positive aspects as well. I was at a “commitment” ceremony a couple of weeks ago ans was seated with one of the grooms (is that what you say when two men commit?) family from Chicago. We had some great conversation about Illinois and Georgia. They pressed me at one point on “what it was like living here”? I said, “well. look what you are here for”.

    No group I have ever been around is more racist that Chicago Italians. Take it to the bank Carmine.

  28. 28
    Ben Franklin says:

    @Election Follower:

    The Phear is palpable. Go fishing. You might catch something

  29. 29
    Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason says:

    @jheartney: The quote above missed an entire culture from Albion’s Seed. There’s a difference between the farmers that settled New England and the ones that settled Virginia. New England was settled by Roundheads, Virginia by Cavaliers. One group was trying to break the aristocracy, the other tried to preserve it.

    The Scots-Irish in the highlands just threw another wrench into the mix. The only thing they have in common with the Virginians is the concept of honor.

  30. 30
    Raven says:

    @gussie: MLK said “people in Mississippi need to come to Chicago to learn how to hate”.

  31. 31
    BGinCHI says:

    Culture of butthurt.

    See Faulkner, William.

    Also Flannery O’Connor’s short story “Everything that Rises Must Converge.”

  32. 32
    Bighorn Ordovican Dolomite says:

    @Napoleon:

    I was about to reccomend that book–but I see you got here first with the info. So I will second that.

    To give peopel a bit f a quick run-down, “The South” is split between the Tideater areas of Virgina/North Carolina and “The Deep South.” The Deep SOuth was largely founded by immigrants from the west indies who saw themselves as the rightful heirs to the roman aristocracy, while the Tidewater was founded by elites directly from Britain–men who were comfortable with class based society but didn’t see it as a virtous end in itself. The rural herders of Appalachian had fled oppresion in the old world and just didn’t want to be told what to do. While they didn’t identify with slave owners, they were/are often suspicious of outside do-gooders, which pretty much describes New England Yankees.

    It’s a pretty good read.

  33. 33
    Cassidy says:

    @blingee: Oh boy. Perhaps you should leave. Maybe the Twilight fansites are more your cup of tea.

  34. 34
    Election Follower says:

    @Ben Franklin:

    It sure is in the Obama camp, I agree. Being forced to defend MN, MI, and PA with one week left? Not where they wanted to be.

  35. 35
    greennotGreen says:

    In the thread last night about the best disaster song, someone mentioned “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.”

    I grew up in Chattanooga, TN where the remains of the Civil War are everywhere; houses on Missionary Ridge have cannon in the front yards. My mother now lives next to Stones River Battlefield where there were almost 25000 casualties. The greatest disaster ever to afflict this nation was one we brought on ourselves, and one the South, possibly my own ancestors, caused due to their pigheaded sense of “honor” which I think is a gentleman’s way of saying, “You’re not the boss of me.”

    And it hasn’t gotten any better. Our poor school systems perpetuate a voting public easily swayed by the politics of resentment, and there’s no reason for those in power to change the structures that got them that power. And to think that many of them use the teachings of the man who said, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” to continue to do harm to the people and the land of the South (not to mention dragging the rest of the country with us!)

    It makes me so sad.

  36. 36
    JPL says:

    @Raven: I agree with you but after living in both states myself, there is one big difference and that’s the value of a good Education. The southern states tend to have lower test scores because they don’t value a strong education system. They want to keep labor wages low. IMO

  37. 37
    HumboldtBlue says:

    Albion’s Seed makes for a good read on the subject, which is much more involved than just farmers and herders.

  38. 38
    Cassidy says:

    poor school systems perpetuate

    Really? It’s not the ignorant ass parents at home? Maybe just a little? Naw…must be the thuggish teachers.

  39. 39
    Cornish Steel says:

    The Scots/Irish transplanted to America, I have read, are the descendants of the Anglo-Saxons squeezed (marginalized) between the invading Norman French and established Celtic kingdoms.

    You can’t tar us peaceable coal mining choristers with that Hatfield and McCoy brush.

  40. 40
    Raven says:

    @greennotGreen: Funny, I have a gay friend who teaches in North Georgia and she, here partner and their son live in Chattanooga because it’s much more accepting than, say, Rome or Dalton.

  41. 41
    gussie says:

    @Raven: If only the whole country were more like Mississippi than Chicago, in terms of racism, we’d be so much better off.

    (Though I hadn’t been aware that Chicago was the NE or west.)

  42. 42
    Napoleon says:

    @Bighorn Ordovican Dolomite:

    Split between those two and Appalachia (to the extent it is in what is considered the south, it also streaches into the NE and MW). You hint at this but it is worth noting that in the Civil War, much to the surprise of the Deep South and Tidewater large chunks of Appalachia stuck with the Union.

  43. 43
    SFAW says:

    @Mudge:

    Mrs. SFAW is “black Irish”, does that count?

  44. 44
    Cacti says:

    @Election Follower:

    So what does everyone think of Karl Rove and the boys putting ads up in MN, MI, and PA now?

    I think it will have all the success of the money he sank into California in 2000.

  45. 45
    HumboldtBlue says:

    @jheartney: What he said

  46. 46
    scav says:

    It’s a little silly to blame it only on the genes and ancestral culture of the last name, as though there were no marriages mixing, movement, or education gong on, not to mention all the other groups sloshing about the country contributing to things. Off the top of my head, my Scotch Irish branch appeared first in PA, married Germans, and then wandered down to KY where it met up with my English branch and then there was the long parallel courtship of, ummm, OH, IA, IN, NE, IL early for some, a jog to CA for others, don’t forget KS, and it was only after the big IL kiss that some finally wandered down to AR, while others continued the usual IL, CA (no I don’t understand the pairing) sloshing. During most of the periginations, the southern English branch lived near members of the solidly New England branch of the same family name, all the while marrying into a generally mongal group of last names. And the titanic family arguements on politics this lot can work up . . .

  47. 47
    Bighorn Ordovican Dolomite says:

    Acckkkkk–my comment box was behaving weirdly and I had a tough time seeing what I was typing. My apologies for the typos.

    Also, too (I guess) FYWP. (I’ve never typed that before!)

  48. 48
    SFAW says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I was going to comment that it’s a culture of cynicism, not honor, but I think your explo works better.

  49. 49
    greennotGreen says:

    @Cassidy: Ignorant parents tolerate a poor school system. It’s a vicious circle.

  50. 50
    El Cid says:

    The South’s elites, however, were not hardscrabble Appalachian survivors, but British imperial slave-cropping aristocratic scions expanding their operations North from the Caribbean (i.e., the West Indies).

    Few Southerners are aware of our strong historical ties to the Caribbean. South Carolina was founded as a cultural extension of the British West Indies and the other Lower South states were molded in its image.
    __
    Virginia and the Upper South colonies were not founded as slave societies, but they too adopted the South Carolina model in the late seventeenth/early eighteenth century, at least in their coastal lowlands.
    __
    From the British Caribbean we borrowed negro slavery, racialism, conservatism, white supremacy, the plantation system, the slave code, anti-miscegenation laws, speech patterns, architecture, and some of our cuisine.
    __
    The American Revolution artificially severed the Southern colonies from the British Caribbean colonies and geopolitically oriented “the South” toward “the Northeast” and inland and west toward the continent and away from our previous orientation east toward the Atlantic.
    __
    In 1776, there were 26 – not 13 – British American colonies, and defense of the more valuable colonies in the British West Indies from France significantly affected the military course of the American Revolution.
    __
    In 1861, Caribbean expansion was the poison pill that killed the Crittendon Compromise and ensured the destruction of the Union. Tensions between the North and South over the failed attempts to annex Cuba was a major grievance that motivated secession in the Old Southwest (Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana).
    __
    Southerners were also motivated to secede from the Union by having spent half a century observing the post-apocalyptic fruits of abolition – the failure of free society – in Haiti and the British and French West Indies.

    We have been taught to see the development (and the undevelopment and the redevelopment and the re-undevelopment etc) of the American South as sui generis and not as part of wide hemispheric activities.

    British imperial landholders and cash crop elites, however, looked at the American South from the point of view of their profitable tropical enterprises.

    However, bringing in that part of the story, that much of the American South’s British and then “white” plantation elites were basically expansion sub-empires of British Caribbean slave plantations undermines inspiring stories of how Ruff and Tuff all we Southerners were (“we” meaning, you know, not the black ones) given our poor, hard lives in those mountains etc etc.

    So, think British colonial agriculture lords and their aristocratic / company offspring for much of that elite Southern resentment rather than “Scots-Irish” bullshit.

  51. 51
    flukebucket says:

    @Cris (without an H):

    And speaking of Montana I read this comment on the thread over at TPM concerning that Montana Senate commercial (guy shooting at drone)

    I live in Hamilton, Montana. Home to this Dan Cox and his Libertarian Party. Dan Cox and other members of his “party” are also members of a local anti-government militia. These are also the same people who are responsible for the “Obama’s Library” outhouse that made national news this past Summer. this outhouse had bullet-holes all over it with death threats to kill the President and all Democrats. We have Tea Party members running as Democrats here so they can get in office and they have stated that they will switch back to Tea Party once they win on the Democratic ticket. Is there a reporter out there who wants a real story? Please, come here and find out the truth to what’s going on here in Ravalli County Montana….By the way, this is also one of the places Romney came and had one of his private rally’s. This area in Western Montana is being controlled by some dangerous Mormon and militia groups. I have yet to get the FBI to help with this, but perhaps this story about Dan Cox will help get the word out. … If you don’t want to take my word for it then please, come here and find out for yourselves. The local newspaper and even the police and sheriffs depts. are sold out to these groups. We need outside help on this, please.

    Seriously, WTF?

  52. 52
    MikeJ says:

    @Raven: I understand every Atlantonian is required by law to tell each out of towner they meet the MARTA “joke”.

  53. 53
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    The actual divide is an urban v. rural divide:

    Urban = cooperation with people different from self, concern for steady employment, less opportunity to fall back/rely on large family ties, desire for continuing betterment of infrastructure like roads, stopping weapons proliferation for safe life, easy access to good education, further educational opportunities, betterment of self, attainment of goals

    Rural = Turkey shoot with Cletas, no time for big fancy words.

  54. 54
    greennotGreen says:

    @Raven: Chattanooga, I am happy to say, has matured into a very cool artsy-fartsy town, and we artsy-fartsy types tend to be gay-friendly.

  55. 55
    AliceBlue says:

    I have an ancestor who landed in Massachusetts in the late 1600’s–but every subsequent generation moved further south, with stopoffs in Virginia, the Carolinas, and finally post-Revolutionary war Georgia. Another ancestor was a Palatinate German who immigrated to Pennsylvania in the early 1700’s. 100 years later, the family was in Georgia. I don’t know what prompted all of these movements, but I have to say they must have hated cold weather.

  56. 56
    Raven says:

    @gussie: Oh, so you like it that someone noticed that there is plenty of racism in the west and the NE but not when someone points out the same about the midwest? That’s some bullshit.

  57. 57
    Mnemosyne says:

    Since no one else has brought it up yet, I will once again highly recommend David Blight’s free iTunes U course about the Civil War and Reconstruction. He addresses a lot of this, especially that “freedom” for an antebellum Southerner meant something much different than it did to a Northerner (basically, it meant the freedom for a white man to be left alone to treat his family and any slaves/servants however he pleased).

    And I’ll just say that it’s, um, not surprising that Pinker doesn’t take African-Americans into account.

  58. 58
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Zifnab25: Oh baloney, there are real policy differences between the parties, especially at the state level. CA is Democratic because Republicans ran on a racist platform in the 90’s and latinos took notice.

  59. 59
    El Cid says:

    @Napoleon: The mountain areas — which were not domains of large landholding plantation agriculture and thus not intense slave areas — were famous for not just their official reluctance to join the Confederate plantation elites’ war (i.e., West Virginia), but the numbers of conscripted soldiers who deserted so as to get out of a war they rightly considered not theirs.

  60. 60
    Raven says:

    @MikeJ: And the OMNI

  61. 61
    catclub says:

    @Ben Franklin: “that Southerners today continue to manifest a culture of honor which legitimizes violent retaliation” … by white men.

    Black urban gangs, not so much.
    Women retaliating, not so much.

    Honor is right next door to pride, and I now (like those folks in the middle ages) see pride as the first sin.

  62. 62
    Roger Moore says:

    @Cassidy:

    No. One group is white. The other is not.

    This. Any explanation that involves unqualified differences applies only to whites. It’s one more example of the trope that whites are all individuals, while minorities are monolithic groups. There’s no difference between Southern and Northern blacks, or between Mexican Americans whose ancestors were here when the USA took over and ones who just came across the border, or between Taiwanese and Mainland Chinese.

  63. 63
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @HumboldtBlue: Hell, Albions’s Seed even explains the fondness for mobile homes among some cultural groups.

    I do think the book offers a real insight into regional (white) culture in the US. It is not perfect, of course, but it is an extraordinarily helpful resource.

  64. 64

    Why the name change to “Election Follower?” Did the “Political Observer” handle get banned or something?

  65. 65
    Cacti says:

    I’ve lived in small towns and large cities in the midwest, south, mid-atlantic, pacific coast, and southwest.

    And out of the lot, Maricopa County Arizona is the most racist place I’ve ever lived.

  66. 66
    Spatula says:

    OT, but Glennzilla calls out and eviscerates Dennis G for his totally baseless accusations of RRRRRRAAAAACCCCCIIIIIISSSMM against Matt SToller the other day.

    As per usual, he does so with clarity and power.

  67. 67
    Marc says:

    @Zifnab25:

    I think there’s less of a divide between North and South than people like to believe. The real difference is rooted in political tribalism and brand recognition. Democrats poll well in California because the brand is strong and the politicians are all veterans.

    Proposition 187 had a little something to do with that, too. Not to mention the GOP’s hard-right turn on all other social issues. As for that “less of a divide,” check the electoral map a week from today and get back to me on that.

    Politics isn’t just about brand recognition.

  68. 68
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    This analysis smells of a “just-so” story. It’s not like other ethnic groups haven’t (voluntarily) populated the south over the last couple of hundred years. My people are Germans who settled in the central TX region in the middle of the 19th century.

  69. 69
    Maude says:

    @Raven:
    I did answer you in the last thread.
    Racism is everywhere in the world.

  70. 70
    Election Follower says:

    Spatula is a Greenwald sockpuppet. Hey, he’s been known to do it before.

  71. 71
    Cassidy says:

    @Cacti: Having not lived there, Texas has been the most overt that I’ve lived in. The South has a constant undercurrent of racism, something like a 4-6/ 10 on a daily basis. But man, Texas will ratchet that shit up to 11 on a regular basis.

  72. 72
    Joey Maloney says:

    @Cassidy:

    It’s a culture of percieved insult.

    You might almost call it “victimhood”. When, oh when, will those people ever take responsibility and care for their own lives?

  73. 73
    HumboldtBlue says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: All good books of that ilk shine as resources and lead us to more reading.

  74. 74
    Mnemosyne says:

    @El Cid:

    Ooh, can I bring in a seasonal movie that actually addresses all of that? I Walked with a Zombie is primarily a version of “Jane Eyre” set in the West Indies, but there’s an entire subplot and a lot of subtext about the aftereffects of slavery on the black population, who are still essentially being held in slavery by the white elites.

    A very entertaining film that unexpectedly reveals slavery as being the horrifying ghost that haunts everyone on the island:

    Paul Holland: Do you know what this is?
    Betsy Connell: A figure of Saint Sebastian.
    Paul Holland: Yes. But it was once the figurehead of a slave ship. That’s where our people came from. From the misery and pain of slavery. For generations they found life a burden. That’s why they still weep when a child is born and make merry at a burial… I’ve told you, Miss Connell: this is a sad place.

  75. 75
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Zifnab25:

    Honestly, I think there’s less of a divide between North and South than people like to believe. The real difference is rooted in political tribalism and brand recognition.

    This is a good point, but historians of the 1861-65 Civil War and of the north-south cultural divide more generally have long recognized that large areas in the northern states, especially outside the urban areas, were somewhat to strongly pro-CSA in their sympathies (look up the term “Copperheads”) while the southern states contained pockets of pro-Union sentiment. The Yankee-Confederate split is a cultural rather than a firm geographic distinction and it runs thru almost every state in the USA, like marbling in a fatted steak.

    Its not like the NE or the west coast are devoid of racism, either. Consider the NYPD and LAPD respectively – both notoriously racist.

    In the 1930s, 40s and 50s the LAPD made a point of hiring transplants from the Deep South. This is documented in both Perlstein’s Nixonland and in Lou Cannon’s book about the Rodney King verdict and the LA riots.

  76. 76
    Cassidy says:

    @Joey Maloney: That’s not quite what I meant. In any culture based in “honor” as the kind of the South, one of the tenets is being honor-bound or obligated to correct insults or affronts to one’s honor. eventually it devolves into looking for percieved slights as an oppurtunity to prove one’s manliness and worthiness.

  77. 77
    Cacti says:

    @Marc:

    Proposition 187 had a little something to do with that, too. Not to mention the GOP’s hard-right turn on all other social issues. As for that “less of a divide,” check the electoral map a week from today and get back to me on that.

    California was a Republican state in national elections until 1992, and launched the national careers of Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan.

    Pete Wilson’s war on brown people sent a generation of hispanic voters leaping into the arms of the Democratic Party. Thankfully, the current GOP never took the example of Cali to heart, and kept right on with their anti-hispanic policy proposals.

  78. 78

    @flukebucket: Fascinating. I spent six years in Hamilton, and a lot of what that person describes doesn’t come as a great surprise.

    One thing I need to take issue with, though:

    By the way, this is also one of the places Romney came and had one of his private rally’s. This area in Western Montana is being controlled by some dangerous Mormon and militia groups.

    I don’t know if the writer meant a connection between those sentences, but it’s implied and it shouldn’t be there. The “Mormon and militia groups” in Ravalli county are grassroots, rural people. The Romney rally was there because Charles Schwab built an expensive, exclusive gated community outside of Hamilton, and that’s where Romney spoke. He was talking to his people, the .01%ers, and the polygamists in Pinesdale are most definitely not his people.

  79. 79
    catclub says:

    @greennotGreen: Not just “Do unto others” but “Whoever would be the leader of all must be the servant of all.”

    Insisting on one’s ‘honor’ is utterly opposed to Christian humility.

  80. 80
    blingee says:

    @Cassidy: At least twilight fans can focus on a singular subject for an extended period of time without being easily distracted by shiny objects.

  81. 81
    Haydnseek says:

    @SatanicPanic: You’re right with regard to the present, but it wasn’t always this way. CA was very conservative for a long time, and the massive influx of WW2 vets, mostly from the South and Midwest (many Navy, but not all) reinforced this for decades. The combination of increased latino population, and the dying off of “greatest generation” conservative WW2 transplants, gives us a pretty good idea of why CA is what it is today. I’m simplifying, and this is by no means the whole story, of course, just a broad outline.

  82. 82
    Spatula says:

    @Election Follower:

    HA!

    I WISH I was that smart and well-written.

  83. 83
    Cassidy says:

    @blingee: Just trying to be helpful. God knows we’d miss your insightful analysis, but we will carry on. Be free little bird. Spread your wings and go somewhere where your purity and intellectual acumen are appreciated. It doesn’t matter where.

    Seriously, just go.

  84. 84
    El Cid says:

    @Spatula: Do people really look at Balloon-Juice and its post and comments as a serious political phenomenon?

    Part of why I enjoy coming here is that I assume they don’t.

    Irresponsible snark and such must have some outlet; there are a billion plus blogs and such aiming to be second-in-command for the Democratic Party planning committee.

  85. 85
    Roger Moore says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    CA is Democratic because Republicans ran on a racist platform in the 90’s and latinos took notice.

    And, to a substantial extent, because Democrats are running on a platform of making government work, while Republicans are running on a platform of gutting it. I think one of the biggest reasons for the Urban/Rural divide is that living in a city gives you a more obvious appreciation for the role of government, especially in its role of keeping your obnoxious neighbors from ruining things for you.

  86. 86
    Joey Maloney says:

    @Zifnab25:

    Honestly, I think there’s less of a divide between North and South than people like to believe.

    “In the South, they’ll let a black man get close as long as he doesn’t rise too high. In the North he can rise high as long as he doesn’t get too close.”

  87. 87
    Cacti says:

    @Cris (without an H):

    the polygamists in Pinesdale are most definitely not his people.

    As much as he wishes it wasn’t so, the polygamists/fundamentalist Mormons are Romney’s people. Just a different branch of the same common tree.

    His great grandfather would have felt right at home among the polygamists in Pinesdale.

  88. 88
    redoubt says:

    @Mudge: (Raises hand) This one does. @Raven: I know the MARTA “joke”. The OMNI one is new to me.

  89. 89
    Spatula says:

    @El Cid:

    Do people really look at Balloon-Juice and its post and comments as a serious political phenomenon

    Nice try, but the comment to which Greenwald refers and from which he quotes ALSO came from the poster, the sleezy, unbalanced GOTV freak Dennis G.

  90. 90
    El Cid says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: Well, northern textile mills and other manufacturing as well as Wall Street finance and banking certainly appreciated their little 3rd world primary product suppliers, including manipulating shipping and banking so as to keep them in that state.

  91. 91
    Napoleon says:

    @Grumpy Code Monkey:

    It’s not like other ethnic groups haven’t (voluntarily) populated the south over the last couple of hundred years.

    In the book I cite above they cover this issue. Basically once a dominent culture is established in an area, even if by a very small group of people, it will be adopted by and carried forward by those that follow, even if they originated from some other dominet culture, the exception being where a group from some other culture basically swamps the local culture (think whites moving into what was then Mexico). So you have one of the authors nations which he deems “New Amsterdam” (NYC and the area surrounding it) and maintains that dispite the fact very few people in it are Dutch the people who are there carry forward with what the Dutch established a the local culture.

  92. 92
    Raven says:

    @redoubt: Oversized Mushroom with. . . .Inside

  93. 93
    El Cid says:

    @Spatula: Nice try at what? Look in the words you just quoted from me — I said “post”. I should have said “posts”. Did I need to name Dennis G.? No, because I was asking the point generally.

  94. 94
    Joey Maloney says:

    @Cassidy: That is pretty much what I meant. But I’m never one to let clarity of expression get in the way of a cheap joke.

  95. 95
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Haydnseek: It was at least partly due to demographics, but Republicans pushing such a nasty set of policies was probably off-putting to lots of whites too. California might still be Republican if they’d just stuck to complaining about taxes.

  96. 96
    Cassidy says:

    @Joey Maloney: Gotcha. I assumed I hadn’t explained myself very well.

  97. 97
    blingee says:

    @Cassidy: lol…that is pretty funny. You are implying that you people actually listen or get off your sorry asses and do something rather than sit around bitching about the latest stupid thing some republican said like you are actually accomplishing something.

    Then there are the Coletards sitting around obsessing about teh dronezzz and providing backlinks to Salon….sigh…

  98. 98
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Spatula:

    White supremacist-defending Glenn Greenwald doesn’t see racism when it’s shoved in his face? Whoocouldaknowed?

  99. 99
    dedc79 says:

    This, from the execrable Richard Cohen,just made me throw up a little in my mouth

  100. 100
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    I can very much leave Stephen Pinker behind on this.

    The point about the Scots-Irish, and the Welsh and the poor English who settled in Appalachia, isn’t that they were ginger hotheads with a culture of vengeance, but that they were largely really fucking poor, and lived in places where the very best kind of life you could have was one of acceptable poverty. You went to the forest, chopped down a bunch of trees, built a house with them and farmed on whatever land you had left over.

    Go to really rural Appalachia today, and you still see something along those lines.

  101. 101
    Cassidy says:

    @blingee: Oh no. I wasn’t implying anything. I didn’t think I was being subtle. I seriously want you to go the fuck away. Sorry if I didn’t make that clear. Maybe the twilight discussions would be too much for you.

  102. 102
    scav says:

    @Napoleon: I think they over simplify, especially as there may very well be multiple groups there from the begining. Early groups can set a tone, but people do continue to shape their culture, even their own.

  103. 103
    Cacti says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    White supremacist-defending Glenn Greenwald doesn’t see racism when it’s shoved in his face? Whoocouldaknowed?

    Quoth the Greenwald:

    “Current illegal immigration – whereby unmanageably endless hordes of people pour over the border in numbers far too large to assimilate, and who consequently have no need, motivation or ability to assimilate – renders impossible the preservation of any national identity.”

    “National identity” is usually at the top of the list of 100% totally not racist concerns.

  104. 104
    Joey Maloney says:

    @Spatula: sleezy, unbalanced GOTV freak

    If ever there was a candidate to be added to the rotating taglines…

  105. 105
    Haydnseek says:

    @SatanicPanic: That’s a good point. Demographics are always a powerful force, and when paired with clueless Repubs employing their version of the southern strategy, the writing was on the wall.

  106. 106
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Mnemosyne: That’s just lazy trolling by Spatula. Glenn’s act is to tired it’s really hard to get upset about it anymore. And what’s up with Guardian UK? They’re paying someone to call out BJ and LGM posts? That’s pretty sad.

  107. 107
    blingee says:

    @Mnemosyne: You are talking about Coles hero. Why are you not towing the line like all the other lemmings around here who all exhibit equally poor judgment.

  108. 108
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @El Cid:

    Well, northern textile mills and other manufacturing as well as Wall Street finance and banking certainly appreciated their little 3rd world primary product suppliers, including manipulating shipping and banking so as to keep them in that state.

    To me this is one of the well-kept dirty secrets of American History. After the 1861-65 Civil War the political and economic elites of the victorious northern states proceeded to turn the southern states into what was effectively a third world colony. It was our India, self-administered by local elites and thus requiring little in the way of outlay to run it the way they wanted.

    And the unappreciated aspect of FDR’s New Deal was the extent to which his massive political support derived from the bargain of pumping enormous amounts of federal money into the southern and western states, into areas which were economically underdeveloped, and severely so, in return for them supporting reforms more liberal than what the local culture of those states would have been willing to support under other circumstances. Those states returned to their more politically conservative roots once the engine of economic redevelopment slowed down after WW2, because by then much of the low hanging fruit had already been harvested. Liberals/progressives who hanker after another FDR today always seem to miss that side of the story and fail to understand that national consensus in favor of another New Deal type infrastructure investment isn’t going to happen today unless a similar level of horse-trading is involved. And those states today, as bad as some of them are, don’t even come close to the level of underdevelopment they suffered from in 1933.

  109. 109
    Roger Moore says:

    @Cacti:

    Pete Wilson’s war on brown people sent a generation of hispanic voters leaping into the arms of the Democratic Party.

    I think there’s more to it than that. Prop 187 was a refelction of and attempt to exploit existing racism, and that racism was always a threat to drive Latinos into the arms of the Democratic party. The reason the racism became so overt at that point was because the Republicans were already on the knife edge of losing power in the state, and Pete Wilson was trying to whip up the racist vote to keep himself in office. It helped to motivate Latino voters and solidify their opinion of the Republicans as a bunch of racists, but that was just the completion of a process that was already well underway.

  110. 110
    The Moar You Know says:

    I think you’re slightly wrong here. NYPD, LAPD, and any big city PD bigotry seems, to me, to be based on an us against them mentality.

    @Cassidy: Yep. When you’re in SF, white like me, and you get pulled over by SFPD, you’re not thinking “oh thank goodness, another white person!” You’re too busy trying to think of how not to get shot or beaten into the ICU.

  111. 111
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @Spatula: The phrase “Culture of honor” isn’t about whether the culture is honorable or not, or I mean whether you’d think it is or not. It has to do with social organization, in some cases gangs or organized crime are cited has having cultures of honor, where a huge amount of attention is given to what could be perceived as any sort of slight, and action must be taken to alleviate the insult to one’s honor immediately.

    The best discussion of it I’ve seen so far was in anthropologist David Graeber’s book Debt: The First 500 years, in Chapter 7, “Honor and Degradation”

  112. 112
    Cermet says:

    @Mudge: Uh, what part of the world do you live in? Last I checked, due to southern dishonor and their culture of raping women and children most blacks most certainly do have white heritage and a lot of that was Scot/Irish.

    A people who refuse to aknowledge their evil past are still evil – hence, why most in the south still vote thug.

  113. 113
    rickstershierpa says:

    He also misreads David Hackett-Fisher’s book in a terrible way, who places the origin of the particular folk-ways of British settlers called “Scotch-Irish” not on their farming v. herders style, but to the fact that “the Borders” (the northern counties of England, Southern counties of Scotland, and the Irish counties that lay directly across the Irish Sea) were cockpit of chronic wars, and lawless “reiving” and authorized armed robbery for about 600 years. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Border_Reivers

    Also, Pinker is ignoring another dominate folkway that he discusses in the South, the Virginia “Cavalier” and its tradition of hierarchical values, with “race” becoming one of the key tools of the elite to preserve their hierarchy.

    Hackett-Fisher discusses race and the “profound impact” as African American slaves replaced white slaves and indentured servants in the late 17th and early 18th century in the South at the end of the book and states that he will make focus of a book still to be published that he has titled “American Plantations.”

  114. 114
    Election Follower says:

    I hope Spatula now sees that “racism” is no longer really racism, but just a useful tool liberals use against their opponents to smear and personally attack them. Remember that. Welcome to our world–we on the right have been dealing with the RAAAAAAAAAAAACIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSST, HE’S A RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIST shtick for years. It’s no different than shouting “WITCH! IT’S A WITCH!” and your political opponents at this point.

  115. 115
    trollhattan says:

    @Roger Moore:
    For a politician with such a Mikey Milquetoast persona, Pete Wilson’s role in California’s ruination the last quarter-century is hard to comprehend, or overstate. Someday he, Ken Lay and Howard Jarvis will share a special anteroom in hell.

  116. 116
    Corner Stone says:

    @El Cid:

    Irresponsible snark and such must have some outlet; there are a billion plus blogs and such aiming to be second-in-command for the Democratic Party planning committee.

    Call me naive, but IMO there’s a category difference between the routine attempts to enforce discipline here at BJ while the hivemind struggles mightily to determine the weighty next steps needed for Team Obama’s re-election and what Dennis G. perpetrated here the other day.

  117. 117
    geg6 says:

    @grrljock:

    Isabel Wilkerson’s masterpiece, The Warmth of Other Suns that I got a sustained, visceral reminder of what it was like for blacks not too long ago.

    Read that book about a year ago and loved, loved, loved it. Amazing work she did on it. The Great Northern Migration is one of the most amazing, under reported, and gripping stories in American history. I can’t recommend the book more highly.

  118. 118
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @rickstershierpa:

    He also misreads David Hackett-Fisher’s book in a terrible way

    Yeah, Pinker really royally screwed up the analysis and then DougJ trolls the blog using the Scotch-Irish as bait with his opening paragraph and quoted comment. Not a good combination if informed discussion is the goal here. Oh well, just another day swimming in snark-infested waters.

  119. 119
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    White supremacist-defending Glenn Greenwald doesn’t see racism when it’s shoved in his face? Whoocouldaknowed?

    You probably think criminal defense lawyers are objectively pro pre-meditated murder too.
    What a despicable buffoon you are.

  120. 120
    Roger Moore says:

    @trollhattan:

    Someday he, Ken Lay and Howard Jarvis will share a special anteroom in hell.

    There are times when I kind of wish I believed in Hell, just so I could get a warm fuzzy thinking about people like Howard Jarvis roasting there for eternity. Being an atheist sucks sometimes.

  121. 121
    The Moar You Know says:

    “Current illegal immigration – whereby unmanageably endless hordes of people pour over the border in numbers far too large to assimilate, and who consequently have no need, motivation or ability to assimilate – renders impossible the preservation of any national identity.”

    @Cacti: That’s Greenwald? Christ, that could have come straight out of Mein Kampf.

    And as someone who’s lived less than 40 miles from the Mexican border for most of my life, it’s also completely wrong. There is nothing more that migrants, legal or illegal, from the south want more than to assimilate. They didn’t move up here for the fucking nice weather. They came here because they’re fucking sick and tired of being de facto slaves in Mexico.

  122. 122
    Election Follower says:

    HALPERIN: Democrats panicked over MI, PA, scheduling events in both states for Biden, Obama.

    the map is expanding…

  123. 123
    Haydnseek says:

    @trollhattan: Let’s hope we can squeeze Ronald Reagan in there…what he did to CA as governor was absolutely unforgivable.

  124. 124
    SFAW says:

    @Election Follower:

    we on the right have been dealing with the RAAAAAAAAAAAACIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSST

    Hey, if the shoe fits.

    As with all your conservatard brethren, you whine about “personal responsibility”, yet play the victim whenever you can; and you whine about being “unfairly” called on your racism, when your whole ethos is based in large measure on your own racism.

    I can’t tell if conservatards are lying or stupid about their own behaviors – probably both – but the end result is the same.

    Now, kindly FOAD.

  125. 125
    geg6 says:

    @Zifnab25:

    A lot of this “Oh, they’re just Scot-Irish sheep herders living in an honor based society” thing is the academic wink-nudge-dog-whistle that tries to separate the civilized folk from the barbarians. “Rural Scotch-Irish” has the same ring as “Urban Youth”, which is to say its a nice way of saying “Rednecks are different”.

    For one thing, my grandmother’s Irish family would beg to differ that the Scots-Irish have an ounce of honor. Stupid, illiterate savages is what she called them. Ulster Scots were usurpers who treated real Irish like animals and came to America to do the exact same thing to African Americans. In my family, they are the enemy. Even my dad, a first generation American of pure English ancestry, had no less animosity toward them.

  126. 126
    gwangung says:

    And as someone who’s lived less than 40 miles from the Mexican border for most of my life, it’s also completely wrong. There is nothing more that migrants, legal or illegal, from the south want more than to assimilate.

    Anybody who’s first or second generation knows that, too. I mean, seriously, these are just recycled, no-doubt-about-it racist arguments from the 19th Century, often using not only the same logic, but the exact same words.

    Clue time: if you act like a racist, if you talk like a racist, don’t be surprised if you get treated like a racist.

  127. 127
    scav says:

    @rickstershierpa: It does sound like Albion’s Seed hasn’t been done any favors by some of its readers / citers. His latest one on Fairness and Freedom sounds worth a read too

  128. 128
    catclub says:

    @Haydnseek: Oh,come on.

    He signed gun control laws when it looked like the panthers were arming themselves.

  129. 129
    russell says:

    The point about the Scots-Irish, and the Welsh and the poor English who settled in Appalachia, isn’t that they were ginger hotheads with a culture of vengeance, but that they were largely really fucking poor

    Right on.

    Another thing about the Scots-Irish, Welsh, and poor English who came here during the colonial period is that many if not the majority of them came either as white slaves or indentured servants, and were quite often transported here, as convicted felons, as an alternative to hanging.

    A disproportionate number of transported convicts went to the southern colonies, because actually transporting them was outsourced to private actors, who could sell them for a higher price in the south because the demand for labor was higher.

    The plantation colonies – the American southeast and the West Indies – functioned as a penal colony for the UK during much of the 17th and 18th centuries.

  130. 130
    Election Follower says:

    @SFAW:

    “FOAD”

    Wow, the election sure has you in a tizzy. Say it with me now, “President-Elect Romney”. See? That wasn’t so hard! And you’ve get one more week to practice!

  131. 131
    SFAW says:

    @Election Follower:

    Halperin? Boy, you must be REALLY desperate to use him as a “source.”

  132. 132
    Election Follower says:

    Question: how many of these liberals who self-righteously condemn as RAAAAAAAAACIIIIIST anybody who isn’t 100% for open borders feel about 50,000 white trash West Virginia rednecks moving into their urban liberal enclaves?

  133. 133
    Cacti says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    That’s Greenwald? Christ, that could have come straight out of Mein Kampf.

    It helps explain the ease with which he can swallow the “repeal the civil rights act” routine of Ron Paul.

  134. 134
    Brachiator says:

    @El Cid:

    The South’s elites, however, were not hardscrabble Appalachian survivors, but British imperial slave-cropping aristocratic scions expanding their operations North from the Caribbean (i.e., the West Indies).

    Yep.

    In addition to works like The Caribbean: A History of the Region and Its Peoples, this is covered in the history lectures from Stanford University, Colonial and Revolutionary America, available as a free iTunes download.

    Southerners were also motivated to secede from the Union by having spent half a century observing the post-apocalyptic fruits of abolition – the failure of free society – in Haiti and the British and French West Indies.

    As private citizens and as part of the federal government, many Southerners, beginning with Thomas Jefferson, spent half a century doing everything they could to kill the free society of Haiti.

  135. 135
    Joel says:

    In other words, Steven Pinker is ripping off Joe Bageant’s analysis from 8 years ago.

  136. 136
    geg6 says:

    @Spatula:

    Holy shit, that is some terminal projection there, spanky.

    And I hate to break it to you, but no one here gives a flying shit about anything GG has to say about anything.

  137. 137
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Election Follower: You want a real answer to that? Sure, why not? I’m pretty sure my city can absorb another 50K rednecks, we have tons of them already. They’re just people, I don’t have any particular reason to hate them. You’ve got a funny idea about life in the city.

  138. 138
    El Cid says:

    @Corner Stone:

    IMO there’s a category difference between the routine attempts to enforce discipline here at BJ while the hivemind struggles mightily to determine the weighty next steps needed for Team Obama’s re-election and what Dennis G. perpetrated here the other day

    What do you see as methods of enforcement of discipline?

    There’s been the occasional banning for some charge like racist or sexist language, I believe, I really don’t recall, because I don’t keep lists.

    I could see how a person of one viewpoint on this or that matter might choose to not visit the site or not comment based on some set of commenters’ reactions to their comment(s). That’s a sort of peer pressure for many people.

    But what if you just don’t care? Or choose to compartmentalize some subjects or viewpoints mainly for other sites and the like?

    Other than saying angry words at some commenter, how does the bloglords here enforce discipline outside the rare incident of banning?

    I mean, it’s one thing to argue that a certain theme of posts might cause some real or hypothetical set of blog readers to lose interest in reading the blog or adding comments.

    Is that the same?

  139. 139
    SFAW says:

    @Election Follower:

    Keep whistling past that graveyard, loser. (Well, for someone of yore obvious intellectual intelleckshul capacity: “looser”)

  140. 140
    Cacti says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    You want a real answer to that? Sure, why not? I’m pretty sure my city can absorb another 50K rednecks, we have tons of them already. They’re just people, I don’t have any particular reason to hate them. You’ve got a funny idea about life in the city.

    Political Derp just revealed that he dwells in a tiny holler somewhere.

    Adding 50,000 to a major metropolitan area is a drop in the bucket.

  141. 141
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @El Cid:

    The mountain areas—which were not domains of large landholding plantation agriculture and thus not intense slave areas—were famous for not just their official reluctance to join the Confederate plantation elites’ war (i.e., West Virginia), but the numbers of conscripted soldiers who deserted so as to get out of a war they rightly considered not theirs.

    But there was never much abolitionist sentiment in Southern Appalachia before or during the war, and little support there for equal rights afterwards. What drove those people to the Union was the Three-Fifths clause as it applied not only to apportionment of delegates to the US House of Representatives, but also to apportionment of delegates to the lower chambers of most of the state houses in the slave-holding states.

    Take antebellum Virginia as an example: Because of the huge number of slaves in the Tidewater, the eastern portion of the state was overrepresented in Richmond, while the western part of the state (west of the Shenandoah Valley) was practically devoid of slaves. The Tidewater used the imbalance to pass tax and spending bills that favored their districts even though the legislation put a relatively heavy tax burden on the western districts without sending any of the money back out west. Western Virginia seceded from the state.

    The new state, while shit-canning the 3/5 clause, didn’t immediately abolish slavery. Its constitution provided for incremental abolition. And in the aftermath of the war, West Virginia passed a lot of Jim Crow laws.

  142. 142
    trollhattan says:

    @Haydnseek:
    Regrettably, the nation as a whole get first dibs, since he topped his California act manyfold as president. But I agree, and perhaps some sharing can be arranged.

  143. 143
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Election Follower: The sheer number of strawpeople in that comment is mind boggling.

  144. 144
    Spatula says:

    @Election Follower:

    Well, actually…no.

    It may come as a surprise to you that there is plenty of ACTUAL racism and plenty of racists in the world. MILLIONS and MILLIONS of them are Republicans.

    My point is that making baseless accusations of same weakens the term when it’s leveled against the real thing.

    But you knew that, so fuck off.

  145. 145
    SFAW says:

    @Election Follower:

    We can smell yore desperation from all the way over HERE

  146. 146
    Chris says:

    @Cassidy:

    This is also not true. It’s a culture of percieved insult. Honor means “my ability to correct said insults”.

    People confuse the word “honor” with “face,” as in “to save face.” Or maybe “reputation.”

    Thus, they’re more concerned about, for instance, not being seen or known as racist than actually not being racist. It’s the same logic that led the D’Artagnans of the world to fight life-and-death duels because someone bumped into them in the hallway and they didn’t want to be thought of as pansies. Honor in the sense of actually behaving honorably is anathema to people like that.

  147. 147
    geg6 says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Heh. You are too funny.

    You love Glenn like a god. Glenn Greenwald who cheered on the Iraq War to the tune of hundreds of thousands of Americans and Iraqis dead or wounded. And then who promptly screams “MURDERER!” at the black guy who is cleaning up the mess he, Glenn Greenwald, encouraged because the black man uses a different and less lethal weapon of which Glenn “Shock and Awe” Greenwald doesn’t, for some inexplicable reason, approve.

  148. 148
    trollhattan says:

    @Roger Moore:
    There might be a way, through the Magic of the Free Markets(tm). If we need hell created, why can’t the Free Markets create one? The have to do a better job than Obama has with the reeducation camps, though.

  149. 149
    chopper says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    just wait until the day after the election, where we’ll be treated to posts proclaiming ‘just negative 12 hours until President-Elect Romney!’

  150. 150
    Alex S. says:

    @Napoleon:

    Nice, yes. This one-dimensional view is too simplistic. After all, a state like, say Nebraska, is solidly red and has no Scots-Irish population.

  151. 151
    Haydnseek says:

    @catclub: I remember that very well. Nowadays, he would be a total NRA honk. After all, to the rethug mind the mentally ill that were thrown out into the street when he closed all the state mental hospitals really do kinda look like zombies, and we all know that there’s only one way to stop them……

  152. 152
    Election Follower says:

    @Spatula:

    Nope. You’re still not getting it.

    It’s just an all-purpose insult of left. There are racists, but they’re few and far between these days. Most of the shouts of RAAAAAAAAAACIIIISSSSM is just a cheap smear against political opponents, like “WITCH!” or “COMMUNIST!” or “TROTSKYITE!” etc in years past.

  153. 153
    Spatula says:

    @geg6:

    And I hate to break it to you, but no one here gives a flying shit about anything GG has to say about anything.

    Or so you’d like to believe, due toy your terminal and desperate aspiration to BJ Kool Kid status. Did you call a meeting to see what “no one” thinks this afternoon?

    Meanwhile, the BJ founder and blogmaster himself reads Greenwald every day and frequently cites his work in his increasingly rare posts…as inmates like Dennis G take over the asylum.

  154. 154
    Corner Stone says:

    @El Cid:

    But what if you just don’t care? Or choose to compartmentalize some subjects or viewpoints mainly for other sites and the like?

    Then you would have no issue how intra-blog infighting is perceived, nor would you have much reason to keep reminding people that said blog is, in fact, not the determinative source for major policy outcomes in the Western World.
    And you’d love such benighted testimonials to individuals who did feel the lesser arguments had merit, and were worth bringing to the forefront. Or possibly scroll past them in ways that might, or might not, relieve the pressure to feel that maybe this blog did not serve a purpose that held any underpinnings of society close to the wall.
    Other, more specific blogs, would, or possibly could, supply the needed focus on subjects and categories that appealed to you and brought forth elucidation on those topics.
    While this blog, as generally unfocused as it is even in those times when enforcement is attempted, could continue blissfully to struggle in its own manichean measure and ultimately to its own self-bifurcated purpose.

  155. 155
    Retief says:

    Ah yes. The glorious herdsmen of Appalachia. Who could forget the vast herds of shaggy Highland cattle that used to cover the hills and glens of the Alleghenies stopping of course right at the border of Pennsylvania where the Olde English farms start. German settlement never did have much influence in any part of the US. Like an enormous shag carpet the herds would spill through the gullies and bottomlands tended by the hot tempered British, that strange amalgam of lowland Scots and English Borderers – fresh from the Ulster Plantation, to which they had been brought a scant generation before in an effort to turn the woods of Ulster into farmland. Of course the proud rulers of the South, perched with their herds in their mountain fastness, did allow a little portion of the less productive lands to be used to cultivate a bit of tobacco and cotton as cash crops by less prestigious and powerful ethnic groups. Meanwhile, the nomadic pastoralists and their culture of honor spread to the bayous of Louisianna and the swamps of the Okeefanokee. That is why that area is so well know for the herds of Charolais cattle and Bighorn Sheep that still dwell there to this day.

  156. 156
    Mnemosyne says:

    @pseudonymous in nc:

    There was kind of an interesting sidebar that came up yesterday with a discussion of the (now mostly extinct) American chestnut trees that used to provide food, shelter, and income for people in the Appalachians but were wiped out by an accidentally imported fungus that blighted the trees and wiped them out.

    I can’t help but find it interesting that this huge source of economic independence for people in the Appalachians was wiped out right around the time that the KKK started rising to prominence. Not in a conspiratorial way, but more that those people who had suddenly lost that source of food, shelter, and income were thrashing around for someone to blame, and there’s only so much blame you can put on a fungus.

  157. 157
    geg6 says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    Yeah, I really don’t know if he realizes that Pittsburgh is less than an hour away from the WVA border. We get that many of them descending on the city on any given Pitt home game versus WVU.

  158. 158
    gnomedad says:

    I think Cole is breaking EF’s heart by not banning him. He tries so hard and has so many awesome handles.

  159. 159
    Ash Can says:

    Election Follower translated: “Everyone who’s afraid of the Obama campaign not fighting back on the ad front in swing states needs to chill out. Also, yes, racism is rampant in American society, and moreso on the right.”

    @Raven:

    No group I have ever been around is more racist that Chicago Italians.

    I’m not qualified to make comparisons, but as a Chicago Italian myself, I’m sadly not surprised. Racism is rampant in Chicago and among Italians here, even ones like my relatives and me who are several generations removed. It’s ridiculous — Italian immigrants were considered lowlifes once upon a time; you’d think people would remember and avoid making the same mistake themselves. I guess the temptation to stick it to someone else is just too great.

  160. 160
    El Cid says:

    @Election Follower: Most Mexicans I’ve known (i.e., in Mexico) don’t want to have to consider leaving in the first place, outside of being driven to do so by the pressures they face from the difficulty of surviving there.

    Same way for lots of countries.

    So far the most effective ways of minimizing in-migration from poorer nations of those seeking economic survival include (a) collapsing the domestic economy so there’s no “pull” factor drawing migrants to the U.S. and (b) improving the domestic economies and human development within the countries from which people are out-migrating. (On occasion (b) can include “not having U.S.-sponsored death squads laying waste to an entire range of Central American nations thus prompting mass flight of refugees to the U.S., as Reagan did during the 1980s.)

    So far we have only tried (a) and did our best to destroy (b) in the name of supporting (b). In the last 10 years or so, though, we’ve seen a rise of leadership throughout Latin America — and not just including the liberal-left leadership but some of its conservative politicians — who have been reducing the “push” by focusing on internal development as opposed to bullshit economics designed to favor external investors.

    Mexico is the exception, and between its US-supported model of development-via-unemployment and development-via-destroying-peasant-agriculture and the US consumption of criminalized profitability narcotics devastating countryside stability, I’m not thinking we’ll see a (b) approach there soon. Particularly not given the commitment by so many powerful forces in the US to keep the import drug market profitable for Western banks (because that’ where the money goes, not to the very drug barons running the trade in Latin America) and the prison-industrial market.

    So our best hope is to make sure and elect Republicans so that the US economy collapses completely and finally, so that none of our neighbors ever want to migrate here, though they might visit to sell us drugs.

  161. 161
    Spatula says:

    @Election Follower:

    There are racists, but they’re few and far between these days.

    How adorable of you to pretend to believe this to be so.

  162. 162
    Corner Stone says:

    @geg6: And you were the dullard accusing someone else of projection?
    You’re boring me, you witless choad.

  163. 163
    geg6 says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Exactly. People who think the people who live in Appalachia are some sort of kindred spirits of the slaves have never really lived or spent much time there and have never met any actual Ulster Scots descendants from there. They have historically taken great pleasure in oppressing what they see as the “other,” whether in Appalachia or in Ulster.

  164. 164
    Raven says:

    @Ash Can: I’m only qualified since I was raised on the West Side and have lived in Georgia for 27+ years.

  165. 165
    Chris says:

    @Cacti:

    Jesus Christ on a cracker – pun intended – that shit is Samuel Fucking Huntington 101.

    I’ve never paid any attention to Greenwald, but now I’m going to go ahead and say “fuck him.” Professional left my shiny metal ass.

  166. 166
    Pinkamena Panic says:

    ATTN BJ FRONT-PAGERS/STAFF:
    “Election Follower” is the third name (at least) for troll “Political Observer”. On other sites, filter-dodging is a bannable offense. Just because you’re oh-so-concerned about being seen as censors for banning someone does not make this acceptable.

    Do your goddamn jobs.

  167. 167
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Cacti: No kidding. 50K? In Southern CA? A horde of rednecks descending on our city isn’t news, it’s every weekend of the year. You’d need ComicCon numbers before anyone even noticed.

  168. 168
    geg6 says:

    @Corner Stone:

    And, as always when your hero is called out for the war mongering hypocrite that he is, you stoop to childish insults. It is to laugh.

  169. 169
    Corner Stone says:

    @geg6: Hero in what way? Please be specific.

  170. 170

    this thread is highlarious. thanks for the work avoidance, all. everyone hates a “hive mind” that doesn’t reflect their beliefs.

  171. 171
    Chris says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    To me this is one of the well-kept dirty secrets of American History. After the 1861-65 Civil War the political and economic elites of the victorious northern states proceeded to turn the southern states into what was effectively a third world colony. It was our India, self-administered by local elites and thus requiring little in the way of outlay to run it the way they wanted.

    Yeah, exactly. I wish I knew where to find more to read about this (any recommendations?) because my impression is that once the war was over, the Yankee and Dixie elites got along just fine. At the expense of Southerners; it came down hardest on black people by far, but a lot of white people were shut out of the system too.

    It’s received wisdom that the “Southern Strategy” (the linkup between Southern Democrats and conservative Republicans from the rest of the country – and between white power and big business) is a product of the sixties, but my impression is that it started the minute Reconstruction was over. Maybe even before that.

  172. 172

    Ya know, I think Fischer is right. I had a college professor (Criminal Justice Masters program at Univ of South Carolina) who posited something similar, saying that the Scot-Irish had bad tempers. As a result the South, particularly within certain states where they were very concentrated (i.e., SC), had higher than average violent crime rates. So similar thinking, but wrong cause.

    I can say that growing up in Memphis in a lower middle class neighborhood that there was definitely a “culture of honor”. When someone insulted you or acted aggressive the only proper response was to get violent. Seriously. I can’t begin to relate the number of physical altercations I was involved in as a child in order to protect my honor or the honor of my family. My sisters would beat the crap out of me one minute and then defend me against our neighbors the next.

    Then I moved to central PA and started 8th grade in a middle to upper class public school. The first time someone said something off to me, I went into action preparing to kick his ass. Everyone was looking at me in horror, as if I’d lost my ever lovin mind. I realized right then and there that I wasn’t allowed to kick someone’s ass just because they said something mean or something I didn’t like. I felt naked because I didn’t have the verbal means to fight back. My fists were all I knew. Talk about culture shock. I struggled with the impulse to retort with my fists instead of verbally for many years. That cultural phenomenon runs very, very deep and it is difficult to weed it out.

    So that’s my little anecdotal evidence that Fischer is right.

  173. 173
    Corner Stone says:

    @ranchandsyrup: Screw you!

  174. 174
    El Cid says:

    @Corner Stone: If there’s a mixture of comments, I can indeed look through and if there’s an interesting point made which is not what I was assuming or arguing, then I can read and appreciate it.

    If there are more which are uninteresting, I skip them. Or, if feeling motivated, respond to some.

    Though serious points are made, it seemed to me mainly the tone and snark which were the “value-added” for reading this blog versus some others.

    I realize that to many people this is more of a community than a blog, and for many people they feel influenced by what they perceive as the gestalt outlook of that community.

    We’re all likely to fail to realize implicit arguments that we’re mired in because they haven’t been questioned, but it’s for that reason that I make sure not to choose one overall place or blog or publication or community from which to draw political and economic analysis and cultural views. I try to find other worthy ones — I don’t waste a lot of my time seeking out shitty arguments from well-known irritants (i.e., no obsession over what Andrew Sullivan just wrote on my part), but I do try to find good arguments even if from imperfect sources.

    If only because perfect sources are so hard to come by.

    So is it angry reactions from posters or commenters which makes up discipline enforcement in this blog comments section?

  175. 175
    Chris says:

    @Election Follower:

    we on the right have been dealing with the RAAAAAAAAAAAACIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSST, HE’S A RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIST shtick for years.

    Maybe you wouldn’t if you didn’t still think “He’s a mulatto! Tee hee!” was the funniest thing ever.

  176. 176
    Cacti says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    No kidding. 50K? In Southern CA? A horde of rednecks descending on our city isn’t news, it’s every weekend of the year. You’d need ComicCon numbers before anyone even noticed.

    In greater Phoenix, we’ll have about 70,000 rednecks descending for the Nascar race on Nov. 11.

  177. 177

    @Corner Stone: I know, I’m history’s greatest monster for laughing at this thread.

  178. 178
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @geg6: While Corner Stone is more than capable of fighting his own battles, I do wonder from where you get the idea that he hero worships Greenwald. An occasional positive reference does not equal hero worship.

  179. 179
    Chris says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    But there was never much abolitionist sentiment in Southern Appalachia before or during the war, and little support there for equal rights afterwards.

    My impression is that they regarded slaves and slave-owners with equal suspicion. The latter were elitist bastards trying to set themselves up as the American aristocracy and use them as cannon fodder in their wars. The former were job competition, undercutting them much like Mexicans and other immigrants supposedly are today.

  180. 180
    Cassidy says:

    @Chris: That is the South in a nutshell.

    @Pinkamena Panic: Lighten up Francis. It’s harmless. I’d rather blingee and kitchen implement (most of the time) take off than this guy.

  181. 181
    Chris says:

    @Spatula:

    How adorable of you to pretend to believe this to be so.

    You know, the awesome thing is that if you can get away from talking politics – best of all, if they don’t know you well enough yet to know you’re a liberal and/or someone offended by that kind of stuff – it’s not at all hard to get garden-variety Republicans to say hair-raisingly racist things or even to casually admit that yes, there’s still plenty of white racism out there and basically, they’re accepting of it.

  182. 182
  183. 183
    trollhattan says:

    @Cacti:
    Reflecting on my scant few times there, probably bumping the indigenous redneck concentration a solid 2-3%.

  184. 184
    Spatula says:

    @Cassidy:

    Lighten up Francis. It’s harmless. I’d rather blingee and kitchen implement (most of the time) take off than this guy.

    But Pinkamina is OUTRAGED!

  185. 185
    geg6 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Corner Stone has never struck me as anything other than a firebagger. And I have yet to meet a firebagger who doesn’t kiss the ground Greenwald walks on. If he’s not a Greenwald worshipper, sorry about that. Perhaps the whole distinction he is trying to make between himself and a Greenwald worshipper is a little fuzzy when he, perhaps only sometimes (but it does not seem that way to me), cites Greenwald approvingly and continually slags on Obama when GG has a demonstrably worse record on bombing brown people and caring not one whit about the lives of American service members than Obama does.

  186. 186
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Chris:

    It’s received wisdom that the “Southern Strategy” (the linkup between Southern Democrats and conservative Republicans from the rest of the country – and between white power and big business) is a product of the sixties, but my impression is that it started the minute Reconstruction was over.

    Actually, it started the minute that Reconstruction was killed. One of the biggest myths in this country is that Reconstruction was somehow a boondoggle that did more harm than good, but it actually was helping former slaves gain political power against the white elites.

    That’s why it had to be killed, and the Eastern elites connived at the killing. Once Reconstruction was good and dead, then the exploitation was able to begin.

  187. 187
    Ash Can says:

    @Raven: I consider myself unqualified by dint of my pasty whiteness. With your experience on both the West Side and in Georgia, I’d say you’re eminently qualified!

  188. 188
    scav says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: There does seem to be a difference in the broad general cultures that conforms overall to the pattern he describes. He may be oversimplifying or getting wrong the origins of those cultural differences or the reasons they have persisted. I’ve seen other studies that identified similar broad patterns (of tornado deaths) and related them to religious differences, contrasting those regions with religions that emphasiced a bowing to GSD’s will and those whose GSD didn’t seem to mind them going to a shelter. That particular study could probably been written up on Scoth-Irish v. Geman /whatever differences too. don’t know if either are true, whole thing is complicated by other factors (housing type, nearness and type of other resources, frequency of events, blah blah blah).

  189. 189
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Cacti: No biggie, right? I don’t get where PO/EF gets the idea that it’s the end of the world. Maybe when one brown person shows up in his little town the whole place freaks out.

  190. 190
    Cassidy says:

    @Mnemosyne: We should still be in Reconstruction with the South being military districts. We could have sold Texas back to Mexico. We still can.

  191. 191
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @Chris:, @ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

    What you both seem to be missing is that this was the case in the antebellum, too. The only difference is that the Southern plantation class became the landlord, and that a large chunk of Southern non-slaveholders- who had supported the war because the plantations had supported their lifestyles as shopkeepers, farmers, craftsmen and tradesmen in the antebellum- became sharecroppers. By supporting secession rather than abolition- either immediate or gradual- they brought themselves and their progeny to ruin.

  192. 192
    Corner Stone says:

    @El Cid: In answer to your question, which I must admit I honestly feel you’re well aware of the answer, it’s a combination of both, of course.
    An FP may post about a comment or viewpoint and then a second FP goes up with a response, further limiting parameters of what’s deemed rational, pragmatic or acceptable. Then a third, fourth or fifth FP comes back, completing the circle. In the specific case of Stollers article, it has at least 3 FP posts now, and possibly 4 as it’s hard to keep track sometimes. Cole skewered it, rightly or wrongly but at least fairly IMO, then Dennis jumped off Cole’s post and added slander to further emphasize the boundaries. DougJ used it as a finishing riposte with no real value added commentary except to make sure people here knew it was worthy of ridicule. Which it may or may not be and I’m not denying it’s out there to be inveighed against if one so chose.
    But then one only has to view the interior commentary accompanying those posts to see how the mindset is being adjusted each time.
    And in other, less specific suggestions, it seems obvious to me that there is a fighting brigade ready to tamp down anything past a line on pretty much any topic relevant to president Obama, his policies, re-election, disposition, awesomeness, etc.
    One only need to review the recent post where an FP post pre-emptively declared Obama the undisputed winner of the debate, and not a rejection of this promulgated idea was to be found in the comments. Or, if it was, any rejection of this approach was assaulted relentlessly.
    IMO, I don’t think it takes a very far leap to discern a very vigorous system for punishment and reward in these scenarios.
    Now, as I, like you I think, don’t take this blog as the definitive source for politics or policy outcomes, I don’t mind stating my opinion. Or rejecting approaches i see as having less merit, or no merit.

  193. 193
    Spatula says:

    @geg6:

    GG has a demonstrably worse record on bombing brown people and caring not one whit about the lives of American service members than Obama does.

    I was unaware that Glenn Greenwald commands a squadron of drones, and that he has ordered U.S. service people into harm’s way as a result of which they have been maimed or killed.

    Because, of course, the only people who matter in war are U.S. people.

  194. 194
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Pinkamena Panic:
    Of late, Election Follower has been changing nyms almost every day. This is his/her/its fourth one this week, if I’m not mistaken. Even “Political Observer”, his nym up to last week, was but one of many previous under which he’d been banned.

    I would not dispute that Election Follower richly deserves to be banned, and would be almost anywhere else. But banning doesn’t seem to be John Cole’s policy, and the other frontpagers are reluctant to wield the Banhammer when Cole himself won’t.

    And EW’a not so bad. He/she/it does offer entertainment value, with his/her/its irrational and nihilistic Republican partisanship that many here enjoy mocking. The vilest troll we have here is Spatula; he will happily make excuses for people who rape children, just to start a fight with other commenters.

  195. 195
    Cassidy says:

    Sometimes I miss B.o.B. He was wierd. And Loko; other than the muftoon insults and Bell Curve shit. That wasn’t cool.

  196. 196
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @Chris:

    …and use them as cannon fodder in their wars.

    Yet those pro-Union Appalachians volunteered for military service and donned the blue rather than sit the war out in defiance to both sides. Not just West Virginians, but those from Eastern Tennessee and Northern Alabama, and in significant numbers.

  197. 197
    Chris says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    My impression is that the main difference between before and after was who was on top in national politics. Before the war, the agrarian feudal elites of the South were the “establishment” (had been since Washington and Jefferson). After the war, it was the urban, capitalist elites of the North, which is something these elites had been wanting for some time. I’m sure Northern and Southern elites got along fine for most of the nineteenth century, but the Civil War changed who wore the pants in the relationship.

    Gotta leave computer for now, but will try to keep reading on Iphone…

  198. 198
    Raven says:

    @Ash Can: Throw in 3 years in the Green Machine 66-69. That gave me a real education about race in America. My basic training company was about half from the Chicago Induction Center, half from Memphis. That included rednecks from the Tennessee hills and militant brothers from the South Side. Talk about cats and dogs, damn those were some brawls.

  199. 199
    Spatula says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    he will happily make excuses for people who rape children

    Define “excuses” asswipe.

    Specific and explicit evidence please.

    No quotes out of context allowed.

    Typical Kool Kid: The most vile but always vague and subjective name calling and accusations.

    BTW…I stand by everything I wrote regarding Sandusky. Glad to know it still titillates you. Projecting?

  200. 200
    Brachiator says:

    @Spatula:

    Meanwhile, the BJ founder and blogmaster himself reads Greenwald every day and frequently cites his work

    For all I know, GG and John Cole may be email best buddies.

    Know what? I don’t give a shit.

    And I give less than a shit about GG himself.

  201. 201
    LanceThruster says:

    It’s like when a psychologist asks, “What is it that you’re refusing to see?”

    So many goddamn sins of omission in the Reich wing “logic” circuit.

  202. 202
    Cacti says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    Maybe when one brown person shows up in his little town the whole place freaks out.

    Ding ding ding ding ding!

  203. 203
    Corner Stone says:

    @geg6: In a thread about tribalism trumping logic, your comment is damn near pitch perfect as a prime example.

  204. 204
    Plantsmantx says:

    @scav:

    …including Thomas Sowell:

    “The culture of the people who were called “rednecks” and “crackers” before they ever got on the boats to cross the Atlantic was a culture that produced far lower levels of intellectual and economic achievement, as well as far higher levels of violence and sexual promiscuity. That culture had its own way of talking, not only in the pronunciation of particular words but also in a loud, dramatic style of oratory with vivid imagery, repetitive phrases and repetitive cadences.

    Although that style originated on the other side of the Atlantic in centuries past, it became for generations the style of both religious oratory and political oratory among Southern whites and among Southern blacks — not only in the South but in the Northern ghettos in which Southern blacks settled. It was a style used by Southern white politicians in the era of Jim Crow and later by black civil rights leaders fighting Jim Crow. Martin Luther King’s famous speech at the Lincoln Memorial in 1963 was a classic example of that style.

    Today, the last remnants of that culture can still be found in the worst of the black ghettos, whether in the North or the South, for the ghettos of the North were settled by blacks from the South. The counterproductive and self-destructive culture of black rednecks in today’s ghettos is regarded by many as the only “authentic” black culture — and, for that reason, something not to be tampered with.”

  205. 205
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Cassidy:
    I have it on good authority that the one target of Loko’s “maftoon” insult was more amused than offended by it.

  206. 206
    Cassidy says:

    @Amir Khalid: Heh. That’s good.

  207. 207
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Amir Khalid: Pics or it didn’t happen.

  208. 208
    AA+ Bonds says:

    Pinker’s “analysis” is dumb as shit because the real divide is urban/rural as defined by local population density, including in Southern states

    Really Pinker should know better than to write something like this – there is no possible way that format of writing can address what he claims to address – and I’m pretty disappointed in him

    Leave history to historians please

  209. 209
    Spatula says:

    @Brachiator:

    Hey Brainiac: The douche to whom I was responding claimed “no one here” cares about Greenwald.

    Given Cole’s status and interest, that’s kind of a misstatement, wouldn’t you agree?

  210. 210
    Cassidy says:

    the real divide is urban/rural as defined by local population density, including in Southern states

    That’s not true, but oh well.

  211. 211
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @Cassidy:

    That’s not true, but oh well.

    You’re wrong, but oh well. There’s this cool thing called a “map” used when analyzing election results . . . you should check it out.

  212. 212
    Cassidy says:

    @AA+ Bonds: Yeah. I’m gonna go with having lived here most of my life. Are your little delicate fee fee’s still hurt over those unseemly campaign commercials? I hear walking in front of a fast moving bus makes them feel better.

  213. 213
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @Chris:

    The textile mill owners and shipping magnates of the North had a large stake in peace and slavery. They were the money behind anti-war Democrats like Fernando Wood (Mayor of NYC, and a shipping merchant himself), arch-Copperhead Clement Vallandingham and Little Mac in the 1864 presidential election.

  214. 214
    scav says:

    @Plantsmantx: I’m assuming whoever that is (rhetorical omission) has a point (hard to judge where he’s going by any chain of logical progession), but insisting the adoption of an accent and rhetorical style (that crosses oceans and is used by politicians, preachers etc) and by implication total adoption of a set of behaviors, and then equating it with violence and poor education when he pleases (despite its use by elites in his own meanderings, or are his politicians and preachers violent sexually promiscous thugs too?) doesn’t strike me as anything but someone using a theory as a blunt object to hit people he doesn’t like with. I’m not even convinced the doofus would understand what might be the pointy end of same theory. What a fucking mish-mash that quoted passage was.

  215. 215

    @scav: Well there’s a socio-economic aspect to it too that is being ignored. In the North and Midwest, individual families owned farms for several generations. In the south, if families owned farms they were either large plantations or very small farms where it was tough to eke out a living. After the Civil War, my g-g-grandfather lived on one of those small farms near Coldwater Bottoms in Miss. He had to work as a school teacher and principal in order to feed his family. Point being that the upper classes had most of the land and the dregs went to everyone else. But he had a lot of pride and he would fight someone in heart beat to protect his honor. There’s a good story of a bunch of students attacking him one morning and his beating up the entire lot of them, then marching them off to school. There was no way he could back down, even when faced with a pack of young teenage boys. Just luck he was a tough man and knew how to “box”. But I digress….

    Again, a lack of ownership or very little ownership is implied here as Fischer states. But he’s missing the way in which poverty affects violence and how it helps cultivate these types of “honor belief systems”. For example, in Islam, the families that engage in “honor killings” aren’t the wealthy ones…right? Fundamentalism of any kind, created by the many facets of a community create “honor belief systems”. So yeah, Fischer is way over simplifying because it doesn’t come down to just land ownership, but he’s on the right trail I think.

  216. 216
    Plantsmantx says:

    @scav: That’s from Thomas Sowell’s “Black Rednecks and White Liberals”.

  217. 217

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Spot on, take a look at what I said here….g-g-grandfather fought 9th Miss Infantry for almost the entire war, had next to nothing when he went off to fight, came home got married and had a small farm but had to work a second job to make ends meet. They were poor but dignified. His health was bad–TB and it resulted in his early death. He was an educated man, very motivated (stowed away a ship at 15 to come to American), and very smart. So if not for the Civil War he could have accomplished quite a lot (not that I’m not proud of him anyway, but….). Hell, all they had left was their honor. Perhaps that’s an integral part of it too.

  218. 218
    les says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Overanalyze much? Or did I miss a snark alert? Or is this Burnsie in disguise?

  219. 219
    scav says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: Oh yeah, all those other things and more play into it. It’s the Scoth-Irish blah blah reductionism that sets me off. That’s usually worse in the followers or second-hand adopters of a theory. Often, the one that came up with it has a far more nuanced view and an awareness of its limitations.

    Oddly enough, I’m not seeing much of that long term stability in my farming ancestors all over the midwest. Even when they owned, off those puppies would go.

  220. 220
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: Fischer’s thesis is far more complicated than was summarized here. Land ownership, housing preference, attitudes toward education, cooking styles, concept of freedom, and more come in.

  221. 221
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ:

    Interesting story. What did your ancestor do in the antebellum?

    My g-g-g-grandfather and his brother had bought neighboring farms in Allegan County, MI, shortly before the war broke out. They both volunteered for the Union (my direct ancestor was with the 17th MI Infantry Regiment- The Stonewall Regiment- from the inception of that unit in 1862 until the time it was mustered out after the war). The former made it back to the farm, the latter did not. I don’t know the reasons they volunteered, but those reasons couldn’t have had much to do with economics, since MI never relied on the Ohio/Mississippi River valleys for trade.

  222. 222

    @Spatula: Ummmm, GG is a widely read pundit who was all for the invasion of Iraq. He and everyone in the MSM who supported that debacle deserve to be vilified not just for the U.S. troop casualties but for the millions of Iraqi lives lost and disrupted there. So, yeah he couldn’t wait for the carpet bombing we did in Iraq but the drones that hone in on small parties of known terrorists….that’s got his panties in a twist. Now STFU and return to your hiding place under the bridge.

  223. 223

    @scav: But they were self-sufficient farms right? I know that over time many, many family farms were bought out by large conglomerates and that there was an urbanization phase that would have leached people from farms….But on the whole, more stable, wouldn’t you say? In fact the urbanization was across all the regions of the U.S. after the War.

  224. 224

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Fischer’s thesis is far more complicated than was summarized here

    Mea culpa, there…typical online reader

  225. 225
    scav says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): whereas all my immediate ggg?s uncles & father were with the 78th Ill Inf, one apparently after a blazing row with his father (he left the state before joining). Only the ggg?father came back (it would be hard on the tree if he died) after the end and married the sister — and the rest of her family stayed firmly attached to ggg?pa as they’d lost the bulk of their own sons. Someday I’ll have time to read their letters, because we ended up with them of course. The one from the ggg?+1 father to his son after being wounded is a doozy, especially as it announces the death of Abe Lincoln.

  226. 226
    Brachiator says:

    @Spatula:

    Given Cole’s status and interest, that’s kind of a misstatement, wouldn’t you agree?

    Said before, say again, I don’t give a shit.

    A blog is an informal community. There is no point in your trying to be the designated fact checker or calling anyone on rhetorical inconsistency.

  227. 227

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Before the War, came over as stowaway from Ireland (running from a life in the priesthood, hence the education)…landed in NY City, took a train as far as it would go and ended up in Senatobia, Miss. Settled in as a Clerk (have letters from him, excellent handwriting and very educated). The tons and tons of letters he wrote are chock full of good info on the culture and even how the culture in Miss differed from his siblings who stayed in NYC. Am in the process of beginning a book about his life (with one of my sisters). It could be a Hollywood movie, seriously.

  228. 228
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ:

    To be fair, Greenwald was blogging in 2003. But that’s as much wiggle room as I’ll give him. In his own words (from the preface of How Would a Patriot Act):

    During the lead-up to the invasion, I was concerned that the hell-bent focus on invading Iraq was being driven by agendas and strategic objectives that had nothing to do with terrorism or the 9/11 attacks. The overt rationale for the invasion was exceedingly weak, particularly given that it would lead to an open-ended, incalculably costly, and intensely risky preemptive war. Around the same time, it was revealed that an invasion of Iraq and the removal of Saddam Hussein had been high on the agenda of various senior administration officials long before September 11. Despite these doubts, concerns, and grounds for ambivalence, I had not abandoned my trust in the Bush administration. Between the president’s performance in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, the swift removal of the Taliban in Afghanistan, and the fact that I wanted the president to succeed, because my loyalty is to my country and he was the leader of my country, I still gave the administration the benefit of the doubt. I believed then that the president was entitled to have his national security judgment deferred to, and to the extent that I was able to develop a definitive view, I accepted his judgment that American security really would be enhanced by the invasion of this sovereign country.

    Does GG quote Licoln at the very beginning (“I do not think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday.”)? Yep. Does he offer a mea culpa? Sure. And if this alone was what I know about GG, I might give him the benefit of the doubt.

    But in the interim, I’ve seen the guy grifting through his PAC. Grifters manipulate and prevaricate to their own ends. As I didn’t, unlike GG, fall for the Bushco grift in 2000, 2001 or 2003, I’m not falling for GG’s grifting.

  229. 229
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: To me, the most interesting continuing pattern was attitudes about education. The NE puritans emphasized education for everyone and a need for higher education while, for example, the cavaliers who settled Virginia saw a quality education as a privilege for the elite. Elites associated or culturally descended from these groups seem to hold similar views today.

  230. 230
    Brachiator says:

    @Plantsmantx:

    “The culture of the people who were called “rednecks” and “crackers” before they ever got on the boats to cross the Atlantic was a culture that produced far lower levels of intellectual and economic achievement, as well as far higher levels of violence and sexual promiscuity. That culture had its own way of talking, not only in the pronunciation of particular words but also in a loud, dramatic style of oratory with vivid imagery, repetitive phrases and repetitive cadences.”

    What a load of horseshit.

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ:

    For example, in Islam, the families that engage in “honor killings” aren’t the wealthy ones…right?

    What? I don’t think this is true at all.

    And in both the Americas and Europe, one of the dumbest examples of “honor killing,” duels, was especially reserved for the upper classes.

  231. 231
    Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again) says:

    @scav:

    I’ve read a few of my g-g-g-grandfathers letters. The stunner is the one he wrote following his brother’s death. Volney (the direct ancestor) had been in for a while before his brother signed up. Volney advised his brother to join the engineers, because, from Volney’s experiences, the engineer corps mainly stayed behind the lines. The brother heeded the advice, but ended up dead while doing the engineering thing in front of the infantry.

  232. 232
    Corner Stone says:

    @les: Whoever this is, I may hunt you down and stick your face in wet Play-Doh.

    El Cid is running his usual rhetorical game and today I felt like playing.

  233. 233
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    What you both seem to be missing is that this was the case in the antebellum, too.

    I think an analysis regarding the tangled relationship between the northern and southern economies and their respective elites pre-1861 and post-1865 is hard to make because in the wake of the war and going forward into the late 1800s the nothern states became so much more industrialized than they’d been before the war, which changed the relationship between nothern industry and finance and their primary agricultural producers. This is especially the case if you try to compare decades as widely spaced as the 1830s and 40s vs the 1870s and 1880s. Also, what Chris #197 said.

  234. 234
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Weird. One of my Civil War vet ancestors was also named Volney.

  235. 235

    @Chris:

    What was new & different about Nixon’s Southern Strategy was that it was the Republicans who were doing it. The Civil Rights Act, Voting Rights Act, and Fair Housing Act, along with other things, drove the Dixiecrats out of the Democratic Party and made them available to the Republicans.

  236. 236
    scav says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): ow. poor man.

    generally, as per usual, the more one digs in, the more complicated and variable things appear. To a degree, the state based binary seceeded or not detail blinds us to a lot of what was going on.

  237. 237

    @Brachiator:

    “honor killings” aren’t the wealthy ones…right?”

    What? I don’t think this is true at all

    Actually, I think there scholars out there that validates my point. They often happen in diaspora communities where the families feel like they have nothing left but their honor. Not much different than the lower classes who spilled their life’s blood for the South to come home to nothing and no prospects.

    And in both the Americas and Europe, one of the dumbest examples of “honor killing,” duels, was especially reserved for the upper classes.

    No, the lower classes just waited until someone was walking alone in the dark and jump him in mass to do their damage. Remember, in the U.S. we’re not talking about “honor” in the traditional sense. We’re talking about saving “face”. So a knife in someone’s back when everyone knows who did it, is what they did. Dueling has nothing whatsoever to do with the class of people we are discussing here. BTW, I agree with your assessment of “@Plantsmantx statement…complete horseshit….

  238. 238

    @Plantsmantx:

    that produced far lower levels of intellectual and economic achievement, as well as far higher levels of violence and sexual promiscuity. That culture had its own way of talking, not only in the pronunciation of particular words but also in a loud, dramatic style of oratory with vivid imagery, repetitive phrases and repetitive cadences

    Tell me what the hell you hear in Southern African American speech that sounds anything remotely like the Scotch-Irish they lived around? Nothing…Also, the way that white Southerners speak and African American Southerners speak is still quite different and don’t bear as much in common as outsiders would think. I am educated in phonetics and speak at least one other language fluently not to mention know a smattering of others so I know that Sowell is full of crap on that point.

    Furthermore, being in the American South actually set my family’s educational levels back a few generations–not their European background. My maternal gggrandmother was college educated BEFORE the Civil War and her husband, who came over from Ireland was highly educated, knowing Latin, some Greek, grammar, mathematics, etc. and taught American school children. A generation later my people became known as “crackers” and our education levels plummeted to at best high school graduates. It wasn’t until my generation, when I went to college that my family was able to recover. So the South and the Civil War set my family back at least three generations…had nothing to do with what we brought from the old country. And I know this to be true about other southern families I have discovered in my genealogical research. So Bullocks to Sowell’s insulting theories.

  239. 239
    scav says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: I’d think the “face” sort of honor definition is the more general one, with the elite post feudal “gentlemanly” version being a highly ritualized sub-varient. Certainly face-honor is held onto strongly when much else has been lost, even if you’ve lost things because of invasion or other, more personal, reasons. It’s a bit of an intangible but it’s more under one’s control than most other things.

  240. 240

    @Omnes Omnibus: Yes, there was a difference in that emphasis between say New England versus the deep South. I’m not sure why. My family was, I suspect, an anomaly. Sending a woman off to college was very uncommon but my gggrandmother had been. Plus having a child be educated to become a priest didn’t happen every day and even so, not to the extent he was. We suspect he came from an upper middle class family in Ireland but we haven’t been able to find solid proof. But in their letters it is VERY clear that they valued education and considered themselves to be above those who lived in the backwoods (they actually used a term, “backy girls” to refer to poor white women from non-educated families). So, I think they were snobs that way (sorry grandpa) and they associated only with other educated people (doctors, lawyers, officers, etc). However, their children had no such opportunities and their fortunes waned after my gggranpa’s death.

  241. 241

    @scav:

    the “face” sort of honor definition is the more general one, with the elite post feudal “gentlemanly” version being a highly ritualized sub-varient

    Agreed, the ritualized one being what the wealthy used…sugar coating all that “common and vulgar” behavior. LOL

  242. 242
    Tehanu says:

    @Election Follower:
    Let me join with the others on this thread who have reacted to this BS. This from the right, who invented the practice of screeching “COMMMMMMIES! DIRTY COMMMMMIES AND PINKOS!” at the very thought that anyone might want the government to help people. (In fact, now I come to think of it, the Communist Party USA was almost the only party with an anti-segregation platform before WWII). I know I speak with several others and probably for even more when I say: FOAD, and the sooner the better. God, I’m sick of you people and your bigotry and selfishness.

  243. 243

    @Ash Can:
    I have thought this applied to any immigrant group.

    Example: My foster family (and de facto, if not de jure adopted family) is French-Canadian. I’ve heard enough bigotry from family such that I have an insanely sensitive radar for racial slurs that come from those with French surnames. My late mom, much missed, used to talk about being “jewed”.

    When I talk with such French-surnamed bigots, and I loved to tell them that their Me’mere and Pe’pere went down on the wagons down Rt. 114 to mill towns like Lawrence…and Salem, long before the border patrol.

    Perhaps, I say, they were better off in Rimouski. Some days, I say this totally seriously.

  244. 244
    Plantsmantx says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ:

    Tell me what the hell you hear in Southern African American speech that sounds anything remotely like the Scotch-Irish they lived around?

    Being black and Texan for what is getting to be a little while now, I’d have to say there’s not very much resemblance at all. I pasted that stupidity from Sowell in response to scav @127, to add to the list of people who have twisted Albion’s Seed for their own purposes.

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