Old Patriot's Pen

Personal pontifications of an old geezer born 200 years too late.

NOTE The views I express on this site are mine and mine alone. Nothing I say should be construed as being "official" or the views of any group, whether I've been a member of that group or not. The advertisings on this page are from Google, and do not constitute an endorsement on my part.

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Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

I've been everywhere That was the title of a hit country-and-western song from the late 1950's, originally sung by Hank Snow, and made famous by Johnny Cash. I resemble that! My 26-year career in the Air Force took me to more than sixty nations on five continents - sometimes only for a few minutes, other times for as long as four years at a time. In all that travel, I also managed to find the perfect partner, help rear three children, earn more than 200 hours of college credit, write more than 3000 reports, papers, documents, pamphlets, and even a handful of novels, take about 10,000 photographs, and met a huge crowd of interesting people. I use this weblog and my personal website here to document my life, and discuss my views on subjects I find interesting.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

The Growing Gap between Left and Right

There's a major division developing among the American people, best reflected in the election outcomes from the last two Presidential cycles. The election Tuesday show that, instead of closing the gap, it's growing even larger. The problem is highlighted by major difference in how each side approaches a host of different situations.

Weak Defense, passivism
Strong Defense, unilateralism
Individual Responsibility
Social Engineering
Organized workers
Individual workers
Situational morality
God-based morals
Environment first
Humanity first
Government-controlled economy
Free-market, free trade
Government involvement in everything
Limited government
Individual thought
Group freedoms
Individual freedoms

There are other differences, scores of them, but the overwhelming difference in approach is highlighted by Star Parker's article today on Town Hall: whether we are people that think "outside-in", or "inside-out".

Our nation was founded on a profound belief in the freedom of the individual, with just enough government to secure those freedoms. Today's Republican Party doesn't match the zeal and energy of our founding fathers, but they do reflect, far more than the opposition, support for those ideals. The Democrats, on the other hand, think that all problems are best solved by government, regardless of what the problem is, or whether thats a proper role for government to play. The political map reflects this huge divide in the way people think about the role of government.

Most Democrats live in urban areas. The national map only partly tells the story. There was a much better map, based on results county by county, for the 2000 election (the 2004 map will probably be equally revealing). The blue portions of the map are primarily urban/industrial, while the red portions of the map are suburban/rural. City life requires more dependence on government-supplied services, rural life requires more self-reliance. In the city, everything is either manmade, or man-controlled. The suburbanite/rural dweller is much more likely to encounter raw, unfiltered nature. City life is concentrated in a small area and limited encounters with totally different demands for adaptation than rural and suburban life, which is extended beyond a tight cluster to cover a much wider range, and a larger variety of experiences and encounters. Party membership becomes a reflection of our personal lifestyles - government dependent city dweller or individual-dependent suburbanite/rural dweller.

We truly are becoming two nations, each with different requirements and different needs, different attitudes and different cultural mores. Our future success as a nation will depend on whether all the citizens of this nation can understand and acknowledge this, and can find a way to work together for the common good.

UPDATE: Here's the county by county map for the 2004 Presidential election. Compare it to the 2000 map - not much of a change, although there's a considerable change in the number of votes between the two parties.


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