U.S. “Getting More Conservative,” Says The Atlantic

A senior editor at the prestigious center-left Atlantic magazine has crunched some numbers in an attempt to explain the growing percentage of the American population that identifies itself as conservative. Recent polls break down like this:

  • Conservatives: 40%
  • Moderates: 36%
  • Liberals: 21%

Mr. Florida looks at blue-collar workers, diversity within a state, education level, and all sorts of data to provide some interesting correlations (not causation, despite the article’s claim to answer “why” this is happening).

Here’s one question he does not ask: which group has more children?

This is not a question that has escaped other liberals. For example, some years ago Philip Longman wrote a piece titled “The Return of Patriarchy” for Foreign Affairs in which he argued that conservatives would inherit the earth because of their higher birthrates. Some conservatives have noticed the importance of birthrates, too; see the 2004 article “Baby Gap” in the American Conservative.

So why does Florida ignore this? Maybe it would make him and his readers too depressed. They may prefer to think that they can turn things around by, say, boosting federal spending on education even more. I expect that one day the bond market will put an end to those dreams.

About Dr. J

I am an Associate Professor and head of the Department of Humanities at Faulkner University. I am also Associate Editor of the Journal of Faith and the Academy.
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8 Responses to U.S. “Getting More Conservative,” Says The Atlantic

  1. worldtake says:

    Yes I agree with the sad trend to toward conservatism and it will continue in this way in proportion as the education and the value thereof continues to drop, fueled by the forces of anti-intellectualism. — lead by such as Sick Rantorum.

  2. worldtake says:

    Height of intellectualism? I wouldn’t say that. I would say that my statement is the height of ironic accurate metatheses. I find it quite amazing that an English professor would not recognize the anti-intellectual tone of the right-wing of the republican party. Graduating from Harvard with honors does not qualify someone as a “doofus”. How many of those forwarded emails have you got from those meat-heads stating such. My pinky finger stays sore from deleting these fowl moronic pieces of internet offal.

  3. worldtake says:

    Really?
    If there are, I have been listening and looking very carefully and I haven’t heard and Democrats make any such outrageous statements, but I think santorum takes the cake on this– his name I am sure you are aware from your classical training, comes from the Latin for sanctimonious and right now I would say he is the king of sanctimony. Actually he fills me with glee, because his right-wing blathering, along with Romney’s constant stupid statements that have alienated most people with brains who are not in the one percent — fills me with glee because these two guys might finally cause the right-wing of the republican part to self-destruct. A boon to humanity.

  4. worldtake says:

    Actually I haven’t studied Latin since high school about 48 years ago and I am way rusty, but I didn’t come up with that idea of Latin Santorum/sanctimony connection. I read it in a New York Times OP-ED. I looked around for the article so I could send you the exact quote, but I can’t find it. Even if in fact his name is not derived from that Latin route, he clearly is as sanctimonious as they come.
    At Dictionary.com, the first definition says it all about him and the rest of the right wing of the republican party.
    sanc·ti·mo·ni·ous   [sangk-tuh-moh-nee-uhs] Show IPA
    adjective
    1. making a hypocritical show of religious devotion, piety, righteousness, etc.: They resented his sanctimonious comments on immorality in America.

    We are not just hearing such statements only from democrats or other left-leaning people like me. The establishment of the republican party has been very unhappy with the right wing-nuts of their party and for once, I agree with them. I don’t expect that to happen again, but one never knows.

    • Dr. J says:

      The Latin root is the word for “holy.” Our word “sanctimony” is a derivative, but the meaning is inverted. Based on your comment, it looks like the NYT writer is guilty of equivocation.

      I sure wish I had your powers of mind reading. It’s amazing that you can see the thoughts of tens of millions of people and determine that they are hypocrites.

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