[KB] Footnote: Re: Missing Mathematical "Recalcitrance" + Representative Anecdote

Clarke Rountree rountrj at uah.edu
Tue Nov 25 17:08:15 EST 2014


Of course the beauty of these gerrymandered districts is now they can use
computers to eke out the greatest number of GOP seats possible, though the
districts start to look like a Rorschach test!

Clarke

On Mon, Nov 24, 2014 at 2:35 PM, Edward C Appel <edwardcappel at frontier.com>
wrote:

> Bob,
>
> The example of gerrymandering you've taken from John Stewart sounds most
> "representative" to me, maybe even close to "ultimate" or "paradigmatic,"
> as Burke uses those labels (GM, pp. 59-61).  It's got all the necessary
> ingredients, attributes, or "properties" of a gerrymander in spades: In
> this case, a very Democratic city of 885,400 citizens, with a clear
> boundary that separates it from surrounding suburbs and rural areas, a
> muncipality of such size that it ought to send at least a couple of House
> mambers of like politics to Washington, even if combined with a bit of its
> environing territories in one or more cases.  Yet it is grotesquely and
> arbitrarily sliced into six parts, those arbitrary divisions of the city
> made to fan way out into Republican bedroom communities, so as to dilute
> and defeat its huge core constituency.  Stewart's illustration thus has the
> "scope" of a paradigm case of gerrymandering---House voting districts
> displaying no rhyme or
>  reason geographically or politically, in the sense of local political
> dimensions.  Yet these voting "districts" do serve a quite political
> agenda, only a conspecuously different one from that served by the city and
> township boundaries of a more "natural," local variety.
>
> The Austin gerrymander functions as a "reduction" of the kind any one
> illustration must: It's an ideal that  affords only a partial picture,
> though a most vivid one, of the many twists and turns that the gerrymander
> strategy takes in other parts of Texas and the U.S. as a whole.
>
> Let's call on the King of the Representative Anecdote, Barry Brummett, for
> comment.
>
> Hey, he lives in Austin or vicinity!
>
>
>
> Ed
>
>
>
>
>
>
> --------------------------------------------
> On Sat, 11/22/14, wessr at onid.orst.edu <wessr at onid.orst.edu> wrote:
>
>  Subject: Footnote: Re: [KB] Missing Mathematical "Recalcitrance" +
> Representative Anecdote
>  To: wessr at onid.orst.edu
>  Cc: "Edward C Appel" <edwardcappel at frontier.com>, kb at kbjournal.org
>  Date: Saturday, November 22, 2014, 1:41 PM
>
>  Maybe another sentence is
>  needed for clarity: districts extend beyond
>  the city to dilute democratic votes in thThe city
>  and thereby make
>  districts republican.
>  Bob
>
>  Quoting wessr at onid.orst.edu:
>
>  > One example of the
>  gerrymandering Ed calls to our attention (see
>  > below) might serve as a
>  "representative anecdote" for the lot.
>  >
>  > I learned about this,
>  by the way, on Stewart's Daily Show, which I
>  > watch not just for the comedy but for real
>  news. That show, I
>  > believe, gives
>  you more real news per minute than the news networks,
>  > which fill so much of their time with
>  talking heads.
>  >
>  > The
>  example: In Texas, Austin is democratic territory. It is
>  now
>  > chopped up into six pieces, each
>  in a different congressional
>  >
>  district. The result: Austin is represented in the House by
>  five
>  > Republicans and one
>  Democrat.
>  >
>  > No doubt
>  this is an extreme example. Does that make it less
>  > "representative" of today's
>  gerrymandering? Or more? More
>  >
>  representative because it amounts to an entelechial
>  perfecting of
>  > gerrymandering? What
>  is Burke's criterion of
>  "representativeness"?
>  >
>  > Bob
>  >
>  > Quoting Edward C Appel <edwardcappel at frontier.com>:
>  >
>  >> Burkophiles,
>  >>
>  >> We've all
>  been hearing---EVERYWHERE, on Fox, CNN, MSNBC, the
>  >> broadcast news programs, mewspapers,
>  etc.--about the 'shellacking'
>  >> the Democrats suffered in the
>  Congressional elections earlier this
>  >> month.  Some "recalcitrant"
>  numbers are in order:
>  >>
>  >> In Michigan, 2014, Democrats won 50.9
>  percent of the House votes.
>  >> Republicans "won" 64.3
>  percent of the House seats, 9 to 5.
>  >>
>  >> In Michigan,
>  2012, Democrats won 52.7 percent of the House
>  votes.
>  >> Republiocans
>  "won" 64.3 percent of the House seats, 9 to 5.
>  >>
>  >> In
>  Pennsylvania, 2014, Republicans won 55.7 percent of the
>  House
>  >> votes.  Republicans
>  "won" 72 percent of the House seats, 13 to 5.
>  >>
>  >> In
>  Pennsylvania, 2012, Democrats won 50.8 percent of the
>  House
>  >> votes.  Republicans
>  "won" 72 percent of the House seats, 13 to 5.
>  >>
>  >> In Ohio,
>  2014, Republicans won 60.3 percent of the House
>  votes.
>  >> Republicans
>  "won" 75 percent of the House seats, 12 TO 4.
>  >>
>  >> In Ohio,
>  2012, Republicans won 52.4 percent of the House
>  votes.
>  >> Republicans
>  "won" 75 percent of the House seats, 12 TO 4.
>  >>
>  >> The total
>  number of votes for the House of Representatives is not
>
>  >> in yet for 2014, I do not
>  believe.  But in 2012, although
>  >>
>  Republicans overwhelmingly "won" the House in
>  terms of seats
>  >> occupied,
>  Democrats won the actual total vote nationwide by about
>
>  >> 1.4 million.
>  >>
>  >> The U.S.
>  House of Represntatives is grossly gerrymandered for
>  >> Republican "victories" no
>  matter what the vote.  The Senate of the
>  >> United States is grossly gerrymandered
>  in favor of conservatives by
>  >> the
>  Constitution.  Most of the small states are red.  Voters
>  in
>  >> Wyoming, for instance, have
>  66 times the power of voters in
>  >>
>  California, when picking a Senator.
>  >>
>  >> See
>  TalkingPointsMemo.com, November 7. 2014, for the raw
>  numbers.
>  >>
>  >>
>  The unfairness of it all is an outrage.  Even more
>  outrageous is
>  >> the failure of the
>  U.S. media to report the mathematical facts of
>  >> the past election to the USAmerican
>  people.
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> Ed
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  _______________________________________________
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>  >> KB at kbjournal.org
>  >> http://kbjournal.org/mailman/listinfo/kb_kbjournal.org
>  >>
>  >
>  >
>  >
>  >
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>
>
>
>
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-- 
Dr. Clarke Rountree
Chair and Professor of Communication Arts
342 Morton Hall
University of Alabama in Huntsville
Huntsville, AL  35899
256-824-6646
clarke.rountree at uah.edu
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