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November 26, 2012

Compare and contrast

Emily Badger, "The Real Reason Cities Lean Democratic," The Atlantic:

The real urban challenge for conservatives going forward will be to pull back from an ideology that leaves little room for the concept of "public good," and that treats all public spending as if it were equally wasteful. Cities do demand, by definition, a greater role for government than a small rural town on the prairie. But the return on investment can also be much higher (in jobs created through transportation spending, in the number of citizens touched by public expenditures, in patents per capita, in the sheer share of economic growth driven by our metropolises).

Mark Hendrickson, "What Explains The Partisan Divide Between Urban And Non-Urban Areas," Forbes:

Sociologists could have a field day with this question, but the explanation could be something as simple as the fact that people who live in cities are relatively insulated from how difficult and challenging it can be to produce the foodenergy, equipment, devices, etc., that comprise the affluence that urbanites enjoy. In their urban cocoons, city-dwellers take for granted the abundance and availability of the economic goods that they consume. For instance, many well-to-do, educated urbanites see no downside to supporting stricter regulations and higher taxes on energy producers, because to them, energy is something that is always there at the flip of a switch (except during the occasional hurricane, as some New Yorkers recently discovered). Life in the city for affluent Americans creates the illusion that all they have to do is demand something and—presto!—it will be there when they want it.

I score it Hendrickson by first round TKO.


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I would agree that cites demand a higher level of government services than small towns and rural areas, But will the left also conceded that those cities should not force a high level of government on those areas that do not need it?

Also will they concede that some cities handle their costs much much much better than others? And yet it is the eternal quest of the lefty to impose one size fits all costs and regulations upon all.


The right will never be able to compete with the left's constant promises of free handouts and class warfare.... The right has to find some way to properly espouse the virtues of self reliance and sacrifice for the greater good.

Ted Craig

This isn't the 19th century. The split between city and non-city is much more blurry today. I smell a straw man here.


I fear that Badger is truly "begging the question." I'd like to see how she could prove her point without first assuming that cities are good in and of themselves and that the only way to get an ROI as high as what she perceives to occur in the cities is with more government.

And I would argue, living next to it, that Detroit's ROI has been negative for the past 40 years or so.

Hinheckle Jones

The real solution would be for the blue areas to raise their local taxes and leave the red areas less taxed.

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