'There is a reason why the map of places…Obama did or did not win in 2008 looked rather remarkably like the map of places where American racism is still at its most…paranoid. There is a reason why John McCain, born in Panama, was subject to zero prominent theories as to his foreignness but…Obama, born in Hawaii, has been the focus of years of elaborate, prominent conspiracies as to his true “origins…'
…There is a reason why, ever since Barack Obama came into office…Rush Limbaugh has devoted the near-entirety of his radio career to incessant lectures on how Barack Obama is black, how Barack Obama dislikes white people to the point of irrationality, and how everything Barack Obama does is based on hurting white people to the benefit of black people…all sandwiched between general racial bile, such as observations on whether or not he can say “nigga”…There is a reason why there is a heavy price to be paid for a supposed conservative seen as working with the president even to the most piddling degree, to the point that even the most basic functions of government can no longer be managed no matter how much actual harm not managing them continues do.
…one of America’s two major political parties has basically gone off the deep end; policy content aside, a sane party doesn’t hold dozens of votes declaring its intention to repeal a law that everyone knows will stay on the books regardless. And since that party continues to hold substantial blocking power, we are looking at a country that’s increasingly ungovernable.
art: by Michel Keck
…a global map drawn by nothing but the points of airports, runways, and helicopter pads. So while you can easily make out the coasts of the U.S. (and begin to see continents if you squint), that’s only because they’re dotted with air transport. A majority of the world literally fades away…
In her superb opening talk, Catherine Bracy highlighted a recent project to map the routes of private buses in San Francisco.
To many, these private bus networks represent the deep divides that Silicon Valley wealth and culture has created.
More at: http://stamen.com/zero1/ (via @tkb)
[look of the hour]
…the world is full of abandoned buildings: factories left by companies…suburban subdivisions from the boom years, crumbling farms and churches in remote places. Italy has an estimated 2 million such properties; Spain, another 3.5 million; America, many more. Andrea Sesta, who lives in Milan, has been trying to find alternative uses for some of them. His…site, Impossible Living, allows anyone to map unused real estate, and act as champions for their renewal (even if they don’t own them).
The great gerrymander of 2012 came 200 years after the first use of this curious word, which comes from the salamander-shaped districts signed into law by Governor Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts. Gov. Gerry’s party engineered its electoral coup using paper maps and ink. But the advent of inexpensive computing and free software has placed the tools for fighting politicians who draw absurd districts…Politicians, especially Republicans facing demographic and ideological changes in the electorate, use redistricting to cling to power. It’s up to us to take control of the process, slay the gerrymander, and put the people back in charge of what is, after all, our House.