Monday, November 08, 2004

Here is a rudimentary map of the United States showing which states are net givers and net receivers of federal tax benefits. Surprise, surprise -- with a few exceptions, the states that voted Democrat are generally giving more than they receive, and their money is going to the Republican states -- since Nov.3, also known as "The Real America." Cast in European terms, the Northeast and California are Germany and northern Europe, while "The Real America" is Greece and Portugal.

Now check out the blog Tilting At Windmills, which posted a similar but much better map with shading. Light blue means they give just a little, while dark red means they suck a lot. (Give me some credit -- I did mine first by about an hour.)

This was prompted by a few things. Matt Welch asked if anybody would give it a stab and provided a link to this handy report and chart showing federal expenditure, state by state, per dollar of federal tax revenue. I joked earlier about northern secession. Now this map is making the rounds, showing North America split between Jesusland and the United States of Canada. Slate, meanwhile, has been running a whole slew of half-in-jest articles about fleeing to Canada or seceeding from the Union.

The topper was this unintentionally hilarious essay (via Layne) by a rabid Bush supporter who actually wants to expel the Blue States from the Union. It's penned as satire but is "nevertheless serious in pointing out the cancer that continues to threaten our body politic." That's a real hoot. The author is oblivious to the fact that these rump United States would go bankrupt even faster than the real United States under George Bush, while the coasts would prosper without those subsidy-dependent Red States weighing them down. Not to mention the liberals could once and for all protect their Blue State way of life from interference by Jesus freaks.

Some more comments about the map: It doesn't show the states that are exactly 1-1 (Florida, which I colored red; and Oregon, which I did in blue), nor does it highlight the fact (as Windmill's does) that 10 states are very close (within 10%). Most red states are red states on the electoral map, and likewise for blue; Georgia, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Rhode Island bucked the trend, but are still within 10% of even-Steven.

Notably, only five six states bucked the trend significantly: Colorada and Nevada voted Republican and they're significant benefactors. (Probably the economic capital of "the Real America" is Las Vegas?) And Vermont, Maine and Hawaii voted Democrat, despite being total leeches. UPDATE: And Maryland. I forgot Maryland!


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