Asians in the Soviet Union?

By: Inoljt, http://mypolitikal.com/

I recently came upon an interesting Youtube video of the former Soviet Union’s national anthem. The music was set to a clip of Soviet propaganda, which was also interesting to watch. There was a lot of emphasis on heavy industry, for instance, a peculiar obsession of communist countries that still lingers in places such as China.

In the middle of the video, however, something very surprising occurred. Take a look at 0:48, 1:44, and 1:52.

These scenes show what look unmistakably to be individuals whom we in the United States label as “Asian.”

Who are these people?

There are several possibilities. Perhaps they are Chinese, North Korean, or from another East Asian communist country. The video might have been showing Soviet assistance to its allies. This is the less likely explanation, however; why aren’t there Cubans or Africans (from communist nations in Africa) in the video then?

Or perhaps these people are citizens of the Soviet Union.

When most people think of a Soviet Union citizen, they imagine a person with features that Americans associate with “white” people. There is reason for this: people of Russian ethnicity – who fit under the definition of white – composed the majority of the country’s population. They dominated the Soviet Union’s elite; all of its leaders were “white.”

Most of Central Asia, however, also was a part of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union bordered China and Mongolia for thousands of miles.

It is very difficult to classify the “race” of the people in these areas; it is a region most people (including, admittedly, me) do not pay attention to. Yet one imagines that if a place borders Mongolia or China, the people in that place will appear somewhat similar to people living in Mongolia or China.

When looking at the “Asians” in this video, one is strikingly reminded of the way African-Americans are portrayed in American commercials and movies. There is always at least one African-American in a commercial. But they are never the majority. The same phenomenon seems to be happening here, except with Asians instead of blacks.

Perhaps the Soviet Union had token minorities of its own.

 

 

The White Female Vote in 2008

(Note: I strongly encourage you to click the image links on this post when reading; they're essential to understanding what I'm saying.)

What if only white females voted in the 2008 presidential election?

This is the type of question social scientists and individuals like me love to explore, and which everybody else presumably finds quite boring. More fascinating still, there is actually a somewhat reliable answer to the question. This is because, in every state of the union, there are exit polls of the white female vote in 2008.

It turns out that if only white females voted in 2008, Senator John McCain would have won the popular vote 53% to 46%, taking a comfortable eight-point lead.

Senator Barack Obama, however, would be president. He would win a razor-thin, 273 to 265 majority in the electoral college:

Map of White Female Vote in 2008

This is quite a remarkable result. Mr. Obama loses by eight percentage points amongst white female voters – yet still wins the electoral college and becomes president. Imagine if Senator John McCain lost the real 2008 presidential election by the exact same popular margin and then magically won the electoral college.

This is a graph Nate Silver once compiled of the chances this would happen in the real electorate:

According to the analysis, a four-point margin in the popular vote translates into a one percent chance of losing the electoral college. Notice how the graph does not even go beyond a seven-point popular victory.

So how does Mr. Obama lose so badly amongst white females yet still become president?

Here is the answer:

Table of Mr. McCain's Strongest Support Amongst White Females

As it turns out, white female supporters of Mr. McCain are distributed very inefficiently. They are packed in states the Republican is already winning, especially in the racially polarized Deep South – where Mr. McCain does so well it is quite amazing and sad.

The Democratic white female vote, while not as numerous, is far more efficiently placed. Democrats win white females where it matters – in thin but strategically located margins in enough states to win the electoral college.

This fact can be illustrated visually:

Detailed Map of White Female Vote in 2008

The map above constitutes the 2008 white female vote, except this time differentiated by margin of victory. Except in a few parts of New England, Democrats never win white females by margins greater than 20%.

Finally, this analysis also illustrates the continuing racial divide confronting the United States. More than a century after slavery and fifty years after Civil Rights, in too many parts of the country one can tell far too much – about voting habits or other behavior – just by looking at skin color.

P.S. For those interested, here is a full of table of the white female vote in 2008, by each state’s exit polling.

Full Table of White Female Vote

--Inoljt, http://mypolitikal.com/

 

 

Exploring the Most Republican Place in America: Part 1

This is the first part of two posts examining the Texas panhandle, a rock-hard Republican stronghold. I initially posted this as one entry, but I decided the second part needed a bit more work. The second part can be found here.

The Panhandle

In the Texas panhandle and the empty plains surrounding it, Democrats go to die. There is no place in the country more Republican than this rural region, where conservatism is ingrained bone-deep and from birth. Not even the most Mormon stretches of Utah, or whitest areas of the Deep South, exceed the Republicanism of this part of Texas.

Few political strategists have thought about these places as more than deep-red fly-over territory. If a region votes more than 80% Republican and looks set to continue in that pattern for as long one can forsee, one might think that there is generally little to write about.

In fact, in the vast emptiness of the Texas prairie there are a number of interesting patterns – some of which are quite strange to behold.

Yellow-dog Democrats

Believe it or not, much of the most Republican place in the nation used to be Democratic territory, voting for the blue candidate even when the rest of America did not. Now, of course, the same could be said for the entire American South, which routinely gave badly losing Democratic presidential candidates over 70% (and often 90%) of the vote. Texas was no exception to this rule; President Truman lost a grand total of eight counties during the 1948 election, for instance.

The difference with the Texas panhandle, however, was that parts of it continued to vote Democratic even as the Solid South collapsed. In 1956, for instance, President Dwight Eisenhower won re-election by a solid 15.40% and cracked the South. One such crack included Texas, which Mr. Eisenhower won by 11.28%. Mr. Eisenhower carried the state backed mainly by its Republican-leaning cities (an oxymoron nowadays), while much of rural Texas voted for Democrat Adlai Stevenson. This included almost the entire panhandle:

This Democratic-leaning trend continued for some time, even after the 1964 realignment of the South. The panhandle cast a strong ballot for Senator Hubert Humphrey and President Jimmy Carter (both times), while a number of counties voted to Governor Dukakis and even hapless Senator Walter Mondale. As late as 1996, when President Bill Clinton lost Texas by 4.93%, there still remained a flicker of yellow-dog Democratic strength:

It was one President George W. Bush who finally crushed this Democratic tradition; since his time, the panhandle has begun voting uniformly Republican. But for all its current love of Republicans, it must be noted that this phenomenon is relatively recent – although long in coming.

--Inoljt, http://mypolitikal.com/

 

Exploring the Most Republican Place in America: Part 1

This is the first part of two posts examining the Texas panhandle, a rock-hard Republican stronghold. I initially posted this as one entry, but I decided the second part needed a bit more work. The second part can be found here.

The Panhandle

In the Texas panhandle and the empty plains surrounding it, Democrats go to die. There is no place in the country more Republican than this rural region, where conservatism is ingrained bone-deep and from birth. Not even the most Mormon stretches of Utah, or whitest areas of the Deep South, exceed the Republicanism of this part of Texas.

Few political strategists have thought about these places as more than deep-red fly-over territory. If a region votes more than 80% Republican and looks set to continue in that pattern for as long one can forsee, one might think that there is generally little to write about.

In fact, in the vast emptiness of the Texas prairie there are a number of interesting patterns – some of which are quite strange to behold.

Yellow-dog Democrats

Believe it or not, much of the most Republican place in the nation used to be Democratic territory, voting for the blue candidate even when the rest of America did not. Now, of course, the same could be said for the entire American South, which routinely gave badly losing Democratic presidential candidates over 70% (and often 90%) of the vote. Texas was no exception to this rule; President Truman lost a grand total of eight counties during the 1948 election, for instance.

The difference with the Texas panhandle, however, was that parts of it continued to vote Democratic even as the Solid South collapsed. In 1956, for instance, President Dwight Eisenhower won re-election by a solid 15.40% and cracked the South. One such crack included Texas, which Mr. Eisenhower won by 11.28%. Mr. Eisenhower carried the state backed mainly by its Republican-leaning cities (an oxymoron nowadays), while much of rural Texas voted for Democrat Adlai Stevenson. This included almost the entire panhandle:

This Democratic-leaning trend continued for some time, even after the 1964 realignment of the South. The panhandle cast a strong ballot for Senator Hubert Humphrey and President Jimmy Carter (both times), while a number of counties voted to Governor Dukakis and even hapless Senator Walter Mondale. As late as 1996, when President Bill Clinton lost Texas by 4.93%, there still remained a flicker of yellow-dog Democratic strength:

It was one President George W. Bush who finally crushed this Democratic tradition; since his time, the panhandle has begun voting uniformly Republican. But for all its current love of Republicans, it must be noted that this phenomenon is relatively recent – although long in coming.

--Inoljt, http://mypolitikal.com/

 

Exploring the Most Republican Place in America: Part 1

This is the first part of two posts examining the Texas panhandle, a rock-hard Republican stronghold. I initially posted this as one entry, but I decided the second part needed a bit more work. The second part can be found here.

The Panhandle

In the Texas panhandle and the empty plains surrounding it, Democrats go to die. There is no place in the country more Republican than this rural region, where conservatism is ingrained bone-deep and from birth. Not even the most Mormon stretches of Utah, or whitest areas of the Deep South, exceed the Republicanism of this part of Texas.

Few political strategists have thought about these places as more than deep-red fly-over territory. If a region votes more than 80% Republican and looks set to continue in that pattern for as long one can forsee, one might think that there is generally little to write about.

In fact, in the vast emptiness of the Texas prairie there are a number of interesting patterns – some of which are quite strange to behold.

Yellow-dog Democrats

Believe it or not, much of the most Republican place in the nation used to be Democratic territory, voting for the blue candidate even when the rest of America did not. Now, of course, the same could be said for the entire American South, which routinely gave badly losing Democratic presidential candidates over 70% (and often 90%) of the vote. Texas was no exception to this rule; President Truman lost a grand total of eight counties during the 1948 election, for instance.

The difference with the Texas panhandle, however, was that parts of it continued to vote Democratic even as the Solid South collapsed. In 1956, for instance, President Dwight Eisenhower won re-election by a solid 15.40% and cracked the South. One such crack included Texas, which Mr. Eisenhower won by 11.28%. Mr. Eisenhower carried the state backed mainly by its Republican-leaning cities (an oxymoron nowadays), while much of rural Texas voted for Democrat Adlai Stevenson. This included almost the entire panhandle:

This Democratic-leaning trend continued for some time, even after the 1964 realignment of the South. The panhandle cast a strong ballot for Senator Hubert Humphrey and President Jimmy Carter (both times), while a number of counties voted to Governor Dukakis and even hapless Senator Walter Mondale. As late as 1996, when President Bill Clinton lost Texas by 4.93%, there still remained a flicker of yellow-dog Democratic strength:

It was one President George W. Bush who finally crushed this Democratic tradition; since his time, the panhandle has begun voting uniformly Republican. But for all its current love of Republicans, it must be noted that this phenomenon is relatively recent – although long in coming.

--Inoljt, http://mypolitikal.com/

 

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