Liberal fertility gap?

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I can only imagine the responses we’ll see in the comments section to this opinion piece, written by author and Syracuse University Professor Arthur Brooks:

The midterm election looms, and once again efforts begin afresh to increase voter participation. It has become standard wisdom in American politics that voter turnout is synonymous with good citizenship, justifying just about any scheme to get people to the polls. Arizona is even considering a voter lottery, in which all voters are automatically registered for a $1 million giveaway. Polling places and liquor stores in Arizona will now have something in common.

On the political left, raising the youth vote is one of the most common goals. This implicitly plays to the tired old axiom that a person under 30 who is not a liberal has no heart (whereas one who is still a liberal after 30 has no head). The trouble is, while most “get out the vote” campaigns targeting young people are proxies for the Democratic Party, these efforts haven’t apparently done much to win elections for the Democrats. The explanation we often hear from the left is that the new young Democrats are more than counterbalanced by voters scared up by the Republicans on “cultural issues” like abortion, gun rights and gay marriage.

But the data on young Americans tell a different story. Simply put, liberals have a big baby problem: They’re not having enough of them, they haven’t for a long time, and their pool of potential new voters is suffering as a result. According to the 2004 General Social Survey, if you picked 100 unrelated politically liberal adults at random, you would find that they had, between them, 147 children. If you picked 100 conservatives, you would find 208 kids. That’s a “fertility gap” of 41%. Given that about 80% of people with an identifiable party preference grow up to vote the same way as their parents, this gap translates into lots more little Republicans than little Democrats to vote in future elections. Over the past 30 years this gap has not been below 20%–explaining, to a large extent, the current ineffectiveness of liberal youth voter campaigns today.

Take it away, my clever commenters :))

Hat tip: Mark Noonan at Blogs for Bush

Possible conflict of interest for Judge Anna Taylor Diggs

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Judge Diggs, you’ll remember, was the US District Court judge who last week ruled against the government’s NSA warrantless wiretapping of suspected terrorists. The ruling was widely hailed by the usual suspects on the far left who are still trying to pass off their visceral hatred for President Bush as ‘concern about Bush trampling on our Constitutional rights’.

Stop The ACLU has the details on why Judge Diggs has been accused by Judicial Watch of having a conflict of interest in the case. Gateway Pundit and Allah are also on hot on the heels of this developing story.

Sidenote: My friend Jay at Stop The ACLU calls Judicial Watch a conservative watchdog group. I don’t agree that it is, but one thing to watch out for in the media is whether they call it one. I’ve noticed in the past that when JW goes after a Democrat, the group is a “conservative” watchdog group. When it’s going after a Republican, the word “conservative” is oftentimes dropped. I hope to be pleasantly surprised with this story, but I won’t hold my breath.

Update: Related to the above point, a kind longtime reader/emailer alerted me to the Judicial Watch website’s “About” page, where they describe themselves as “a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation” – but I think the point I made still remains. They don’t conduct themselves as a partisan watchdog group, but the media treats them as such with their selective labelling. When JW went after Dick Cheney’s 2001 energy task force meeting records, this July 2002 AP story did not identify them as a conservative watchdog group:

MIAMI – A watchdog group said Tuesday it would file a shareholders lawsuit against Vice President Dick Cheney and his former employer, Halliburton Co., claiming they engaged in accounting fraud.

You can fine many more examples via Media Research (and here as well).

Hat tip for the Judge Anna Taylor Diggs conflict of interest story: Brian at Iowa Voice

Others blogging about this: Kim Priestap at Wizbang, Captain Ed, The Political Pit Bull, Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler, Gary Gross at California Conservative, Flopping Aces, Blue Crab Boulevard

Tweaking the blog

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I’m making a few minor changes into the look of the blog – nothing major, mainly font size changes and a few other minor things here and there. I decreased the font size for blogposts a few minutes ago. I think it was too big to begin with, though, as most other blogs have font sizes much smaller than mine were. At least this way, my posts won’t look as long as they sometimes can be ;) My eyes are getting adjusted to the font size now – hopefully it won’t be a problem for anyone else.

Paging Al Gore, paging Al Gore

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I think he’d like this guy (if he hasn’t met him already):

Hurricane chief: Megadisaster ‘is coming’
Tragedy worse than Katrina is not a question of if, but when, he says

MIAMI – If you thought the sight of the great American jazz city New Orleans flooded to the eaves — its people trapped in attics or cowering on rooftops — was the nightmare hurricane scenario, think again.

Max Mayfield, director of the U.S. National Hurricane Center, says there’s plenty of potential for a storm worse than Hurricane Katrina, which killed 1,339 people along the U.S. Gulf coast and caused some $80 billion in damage last August.

“People think we have seen the worst. We haven’t” Mayfield told Reuters in an interview at the fortress-like hurricane center in Florida.

“I think the day is coming. I think eventually we’re going to have a very powerful hurricane in a major metropolitan area worse than what we saw in Katrina and it’s going to be a megadisaster. With lots of lost lives” Mayfield said.

“I don’t know whether that’s going to be this year or five years from now or a hundred years from now. But as long as we continue to develop the coastline like we are, we’re setting up for disaster.”

Isn’t this something that even a layman could predict? It seems like every few years we see disasters that are worse than those that happen in previous years, so why all the hype over the ‘hurricane chief’ saying essentially “we don’t now when it’s going to happen, but it’s going to happen”? Such predictions aren’t exactly rocket science, are they?

Prior/Related:

Calling Dean out on his New Hampshire primary flip flop

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The New Hampshire Union Leader catches the Dr. of Disology in a flip flop:

ON NOV. 13, 2003, then-Vermont Gov. Howard Dean filed to run in the 2004 New Hampshire primary. At the time, he claimed to believe in the tradition the primary upheld.

“I am absolutely committed to New Hampshire having the first primary and Iowa having the first caucus,” he said. “The reason I’m committed is that candidates like me would never have a chance without being able to look people in the eye and shake their hands and let them say what they think.

“I’m very pleased that South Carolina has an early primary. It’s more a diverse state and that’s important. And I urge other states to have early primaries. But I think we’ve got to continue the tradition of the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary because it’s the only way candidates with no money — but with strong backing and who are willing to put backbone and spine back into the Democratic Party — have any chance at all.”

That was Howard Dean the outsider. Howard Dean the insider has a different view of the tradition New Hampshire’s primary has long upheld. Howard Dean the insider views the New Hampshire primary and its “people-powered” ability to upend the establishment and “put backbone and spine back into the Democratic Party” as a threat.

In 2003, Howard Dean spoke a great deal about taking back the Democratic Party. Now the DNC, with Dean the insider’s blessing, is trying to take it back from the grassroots activists trying to complete what Dean the outsider started.

The New Hampshire primary has not changed since Dean praised it in 2003. It is as it always has been: the greatest opportunity for average voters to influence the Presidential nominating process. It is Howard Dean who has changed — assuming he meant a word of what he said three years ago.

Read background on Dean’s new position here.

In related news, some anti-war groups are pushing to get Lieberman’s name taken off the CT ballot.

Hmmm, wasn’t it just a week or so ago that Democrats were accusing Lieberman of ‘subverting the democratic process‘? I wonder what they’ll have to say about this – if anything? My guess is that if they respond, it’ll sound something like this “these people are exercising their Constitutional rights to [blah blah blah]” or some other such ‘patriotic’ talk.

Prior: