NPR: Obama’s Secret Weapon In The South
NPR Science Blogger Krulwich talks about, politics, geology, paleontology & plankton. No, not that plankton, he’s still chasing Mr Krabs. No, the real thing…
Look at this map, and notice that deep, deep in the Republican South, there’s a thin blue band stretching from the Carolinas through Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi. These are the counties that went for Obama in the last election. A blue crescent in a sea of red.
These same counties went mostly blue in 2004 and 2000. Why? Well, the best answer, says marine biologist Craig McClain, may be an old one, going back before the Civil War, before 1776, before Columbus, back more than 100 million years to the days when the Deep South was under water. Those counties, as he writes here, went for Obama because trillions and trillions and trillions of teeny sun-loving creatures died there. He’s talking about plankton. That’s why the Republicans can’t carry those counties. Blame plankton.
It’s especially interesting to read in conjuction with the analysis in “The Cousins’ Wars” by Kevin Phillips where he discusses the impact of the English Civil War, The American Revolution & The American Civil War on on politics and immigration & settlement patterns in North America. It’s interesting to see how decisions made hundreds of years ago are alive in our day to day political sphere.