Overheard on the Web, and other Web links From The Herald's Research Editor
Thursday, November 04, 2004
Here are a few explanations on why the election went the way it did. I expect the analyses will keep coming, but these struck me yesterday (couldn't post then because I couldn't get in to edit). I'll be adding to this list:
Open Secrets: Money Wins. The Center for Responsive Politics, which does such a great job of keeping track of campaign financing and its effect on government, looked at the races and determined that most winners were the ones who gathered and spent the most money.
Bush is a very simple man. You may think that makes him a bad president, as I do, but lots of people don't - and there are more of them than there are of us. If you don't believe me, take a look at those numbers on your TV screen.
...This is what so many people like about Bush's approach to terrorism. They forgive his marginal and not-so-marginal screw-ups, because they can see that fundamentally, he "gets it."
Moral values: it's what people cited most as their reason to vote for Bush. Beliefnet has the statistics.
The Maps: here are a couple maps that can help focus on exactly who voted how: USA Today shows vote by county. It makes the red/blue even more obvious...even in the states that went for Kerry the votes were mostly in the cities (and, maybe, some predominately black rural counties). Boing Boing has a map by a reader that changes the stark red/blue states to shades of purple, showing how close it really was....
"This election confirms the brilliance of Karl Rove as a political strategist. He calculated that the religious conservatives, if they could be turned out, would be the deciding factor.
...America, the first real democracy in history, was a product of Enlightenment values - critical intelligence, tolerance, respect for evidence, a regard for the secular sciences. Though the founders differed on many things, they shared these values of what was then modernity." But, he says, the Enlightenment is over in this country. America is now a fundamentalist nation.
"...Where else do we find fundamentalist zeal, a rage at secularity, religious intolerance, fear of and hatred for modernity? Not in France or Britain or Germany or Italy or Spain. We find it in the Muslim world, in Al Qaeda, in Saddam Hussein's Sunni loyalists."
"...gay marriage now seems essential to any conversation about the 2004 election.
..Bush won 61 percent of the white male vote in a nation that, despite everything you hear in the progressive media, is still swarming with white guys."
And quotes a minister who voted for Bush: ""The Democratic Party stands for, by and large, the dismantling of marriage as we've known it as a civilization," he said."
Elisabeth (Liz) Donovan was a Herald librarian for 10 years, and Research Editor for 13 years. She came to The Herald in 1981, following several years at the
Washington Post. She started blogging in 2000, with a news research blog, followed by the blog at Herald.com in 2003. A frequent speaker and writer on news research, she was honored in 2004 by the
News Division of the Special Libraries Association for her contributions to