{ metropolis devoured }
a tribute to my san francisco

3/4 oz scotch whiskey
3/4 oz local politics
1/4 oz public policy
1/4 oz disaster preparedness
1/2 oz alamo square

Shake over neighborhood dives & venues, strain into a chilled cocktail dress, garnish with a sprig of gov 2.0, and serve.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Time to let go of our antiquated agrarian nostalgia.

Slate has an interesting article up about American perceptions of what is "real" American and what is not, the Alaska vs. Hawaii argument. Read the full article here. I agree that there's a certain amount of romance left to the country lifestyle, but it's time to stop pandering to one demographic more than the others. Go where the voters are!

... Alaska leans Republican while Hawaii leans Democratic, and the GOP long ago intimidated the media into believing that only Republican strongholds represent the "real America." These Republican strongholds are usually sparsely populated, and I suppose the media's been sold on the idea that because the United States started out as an agrarian nation, rural areas are somehow more authentic than urban ones.

But if it's really true, as Palin said in the debate, that Americans are tired of "constantly looking backwards," then perhaps it's time we noticed that, as Rachael Larimore points out in Slate's "XX Factor" blog, 80 percent of the U.S. population lives in metropolitan areas. We city-dwellers make no claim to being more "authentically American" than Alaskans or the inhabitants of any of this country's many other big open spaces. But we are, by dispassionate numerical reckoning, more typical. And while most people probably don't think of Hawaii as an urban state, 70 percent of its 1.3 million inhabitants live in and around Honolulu, the state's biggest city. In Alaska, by contrast, only 42 percent of its 670,000 inhabitants live in and around Anchorage, that state's biggest city. So if either of the last two states admitted to the union has any claim to being more characteristic of the nation as a whole, it's Hawaii, not Alaska.



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