Thursday, September 30, 2010

Health Reform Theory

I have this simple minded theory – The country is becoming more conservative in its political attitudes and its resistance of health reform in those parts of the country with the least population densities ( i.e. people with the lowest number of people per square mile).

In other words, the most liberal and most conservative states are directly correlated to their population densities.

The five states with greatest population densities per square mile are,

1. Washington, D.C, 9581
2. New Jersey, 1171
3. Rhode Island, 1012
4. Massachusetts, 823
5. Maryland, 574

No one can deny these states are in the liberal Democratic camp. Throw in Delaware with 443. New York with 409, and California with 234, and you get the picture.

The five states with lowest population densities are,

1. Alaska, 1.2
2. Wyoming, 5.2
3. Montana, 6.6
4. North Dakota, 9.3
5. South Dakota, 10.5

Toss in Arizona with 54, Oklahoma with 53,, Kansas with 34, and Nevada with 23, and a pattern emerges.

I’m not sure how useful this information is or what a revelation it is to you, but it confirms my simple minded theory that people in thinly populated states tend to be conservative and to resist the health reform law.

Anyway to me , population density is a useful metaphor for the two prevailing worldviews now in conflict, i.e, the middle class revolt as exemplified by the Tea Party, and the elite, have-nots, and the multiculturists on the fringes who distrust middle class values.

If you live in a densely populated state in the East, chances are you welcome rules and regulations, you distrust the Tea Party, and you depend on big government to protect you against the haves in the middle-class..

If you live in the wilds of the Midwest or West, you are more independent and more removed from Beltway attitudes, and you depend on your neighbors.

The point of this state population density report is that the United States is a vast, complicated continental nation. It is therefore difficult to impose a unitary national health system on a diverse country, particularly when 61% oppose the reform law. For every complicated problem, there is a simple way of looking at it, and it may be wrong.

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