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 REVISIONIST HISTORY

‘The Politics of Race’ …Revising the Legacy of Tom Bradley

Clinton Galloway
CORRUPTION WATCH-I recently saw a documentary titled “Bridging the Divide: Tom Bradley and the Politics of Race" that was shown on PBS. What was supposed to be a documentary was little more than a gratuitous fluff piece distorting the true record of Tom Bradley. While Tom Bradley did very well for Tom Bradley, his effects upon the racial divide…

Special Report: California Saved by Whistleblowers

Ed Coghlan
PERSPECTIVE--“For democracies to work, elected leaders need to be responsive and representative, and voters must be able to hold elected officials accountable for results. Democratic integrity requires an electoral process that empowers voters and gives candidates and incumbents the incentives to listen and lead. It requires transparency…

Can High Density Housing Solve LA’s Housing Crisis? It’s Complicated!

Jason Islas
ANALYSIS-Southern California Public Radio affiliate KPCC, in partnership with the Milken Institute, assembled a panel of experts last Wednesday night to answer the question: can high-density housing solve the housing crisis currently facing L.A. County and California? For those who have been following news about the crippling housing supply crisis…

DWP: No Reform, No Rate Increase!

Jack Humphreville
LA WATCHDOG--Our Department of Water and Power is planning to have its proposed $1.4 billion increase in our water and power rates to be effective as of January 1, 2016. But this timing is unlikely because of the many questions involving the Department’s operations and finances and its dysfunctional and financially draining relationship with City…

Memo to City Leadership: Blame Yourselves if Angelenos Reject the Olympics

Ken Alpern
POLITICS-For the record, I would love to see the Olympics return to LA, and I would love to see a successful Measure R-2. That said, I think the Mayor, City Council and Downtown "leadership" have done enough mischief and backdoor wrongdoing that it will prove very difficult for Angelenos (who really are sick of City corruption) to support either…

Action Alert! Amend the Citywide Mansionization Ordinance

Shelley Wagers and Dick Platkin
The problem--Mansionization replaces older homes with oversized structures, often built byspeculators. The problem is not house size. It’s house size relative to lot size and neighborhood context. Mansionization disrupts the scale and character of established neighborhoods. Houses that loom over neighboring homes take away air, sunlight, privacy,…

Trump’s Nonsense: Latinos Shouldn’t ‘Take it Personally’

Fred Mariscal
LATINO PERSPECTIVE-Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump continues in the lead with no end in sight. He recently unveiled his plan to deport by force all 11 million undocumented workers residing in the United States. As George Will said, Trump’s roundup would be about 94 times larger than the wartime internment of 117,000 persons of…

Vision Zero 101: Bike Lanes Are NOT Parking Spaces

Sahra Sulaiman
LA STREET WATCH--Tap-tap-tap. The parking enforcement officer looked up from his phone. When he rolled down his window, I smiled and asked politely about his having parked in the bike lane on Los Angeles Street. There was a long pause. “And?” He raised his eyebrows. Having only expected some, not total, disdain, I stuttered my way through my…

Racial Quagmire in a ‘Post-Racial’ America? The Key is Economic Progress, Not Protest

Joel Kotkin
RACISM AND IDENTITY POLITICS-The election of Barack Obama promised to inaugurate the dawn of a post-racial America. Instead we seem to be stepping ever deeper into a racial quagmire. The past two months saw the violent commemoration of the Ferguson protests, “the celebration” of the 50th anniversary of the Watts riots, new police shootings in…

  • Arsenic in Your Rice?! Here’s Help

    Christian Cristiano
    WELLNESS--Rice has been found to be high in arsenic. Arsenic is a chemical element comes in organic and inorganic, and the highly toxic inorganic is…
  • Campbell’s Soup to Remove MSG … at Long Last!

    Christian Cristiano
    WELLNESS-You can’t get more American than Campbell’s soup. This company has been gracing our grocery shelves since 1859. With iconic artists like…
  • Probiotics Instead of Weight Loss Surgery?

    Christian Cristiano
    WELLNESS-In a study published in the journal Cell Metabolism on August 4, they have proven a link between weight loss surgeries and gut microbes. It…





Dream Team. Sarah Palin interviews the Donald

Downton Abbey. Final season promo


LADWP Rates Overview

 

 

  

 

 

 

The Myth of the Republican Party’s Inevitable Decline

POLITICS - The map is shifting, and Democrats see the nation’s rapidly changing demography putting ever more states in play—Barack Obama is hoping to compete in Arizona this year, to go along with his map-changing North Carolina and Indiana wins in 2008—and eventually ensure the party’s dominance in a more diverse America, as Republicans quite literally die out.
Ruy Teixeira and others have pointed to the growing number of voters in key groups that have tilted Democratic: Hispanics, single-member households, and well-educated millennials. Speaking privately at a closed-door Palm Beach fundraiser Sunday, Mitt Romney said that polls showing Obama with a huge lead among Hispanic voters “spell doom for us.”

But, as the fine print says, past results do not guarantee future performance—and there are some surprising countervailing factors that could upset the conventional wisdom of Republican decline.

Let’s start with Hispanics. Straight-line projections suggest an ever-increasing base, as the Latino population shot up (PDF) from 35 million in 2000 to more than 50 million in 2010, accounting for half of all national population growth over the decade. Exit polls showed Democrats winning the vote in each election cycle over that stretch, with Republicans never gaining more than 40 percent of the vote. And the problem is getting worse: a recent Fox News Latino poll showed Obama trouncing Romney, 70–14, among Hispanic voters—even leading among Latinos who backed John McCain in 2008.

But longer term, Hispanic population growth is likely to slow or even recede, and Republicans are likely to do better with the group (in part because it would be hard to do much worse), as assimilation increases and immigration becomes less volatile an issue.

Rates of Hispanic immigration, particularly from Mexico, are down and are likely to continue declining. In the 1990s, 2.76 million Mexicans obtained legal permanent-resident status. That number fell by more than a million in the 2000s, to 1.7 million, according to the Department of Homeland Security. A key reason, little acknowledged by either nativists or multiculturalists, lies in the plummeting birth rate in Mexico, which is mirrored in other Latin American countries. Mexico’s birth rate has declined from 6.8 children per woman in 1970 to about 2 children per woman in 2011.

Plummeting birth rates suggest there will be fewer economic migrants from south of the border in coming decades. In the 1990s Mexico was adding about a million people annually to its labor force. By 2007 this number declined to about 800,000 annually, and it is projected to drop to 300,000 by 2030.

These changes impacted immigration well before the 2008 financial crisis. The number of Mexicans legally coming to the United States plunged from more than 1 million in 2006 to just over 400,000 in 2010, in part because of the 2008 financial crisis here. Illegal immigration has also been falling.

Between 2000 and 2004, an estimated 3 million undocumented immigrants entered the country; that number fell by more than two thirds over the next five years, to under 1 million between 2005 and 2009.

Increasingly, our Latino population—almost one in five Americans between 18 and 29—will be made up of people from second- and third-generation families. Between 2000 and 2010, 7.2 million Mexican-Americans were born in the U.S., while just 4.2 million immigrated here.

This shift could spur the faster integration of Latinos into mainstream society, leaving them less distinct from other groups of voters, like the Germans or the Irish, whose ethnicity once seemed politically determinative. A solid majority of Latinos, 54 percent, consider themselves white, according to a recent Pew study, while 40 percent do not identify with any race. Most reject the umbrella term “Latino.” Equally important, those born here tend to use English as their primary language (while just 23 percent of immigrants are fluent in English, that number shoots up to 90 percent among their children).

To be sure, most Latinos these days vote Democratic. But they also tend to be somewhat culturally conservative. Almost all are at least nominally Christian, and roughly one in four is a member of an evangelical church. They also have been moving to the suburbs for the past decade or more—a trend that is of great concern to city-centric Democratic planners.

A more integrated, suburban, and predominantly English-speaking Latino community could benefit a GOP (assuming it eschews stridently nativist platform). After all, it wasn’t so long ago that upward of 40 percent of Latinos voted for the likes of George W. Bush, who won a majority of Latino Protestants.

More than race, family orientation may prove the real dividing line in American politics. Single, never-married women have emerged as one of the groups most devoted to the Democratic party, trailing only black voters, according to Gallup. Some 70 percent of single women voted Democratic in 2008, including 60 percent of white single women.

While the gender gap has been exaggerated, a chasm is emerging between traditional families, on the one hand, and singles and nontraditional families on the other. Married women, for example, still lean Republican. But Democrats dominate in places like Manhattan, where the majority of households are single, along with Washington, D.C., San Francisco, and Seattle.

In recent years Republican gains, according to Gallup, have taken place primarily among white families. Not surprisingly, Republicans generally do best where the traditional nuclear family is most common, such as in the largely suburban (and fairly affordable) expanses around Houston, Dallas, and Salt Lake City.

To be sure, Democrats can take some solace, at least in the short run, from the rise in the number of singletons. Over the past 30 years the proportion of women in their 40s who have never had children has doubled, to nearly one in five. Singles now number more than 31 million, up from 27 million in 2000—a growth rate nearly twice that of the overall population. And only one in five millennials is married, half that of their parents’ generation.

Yet as with Latino immigration, the trend toward singlehood is unlikely to continue unabated. Demographic analyst Neil Howe notes that living alone has been more pronounced among boomers (born 46–64) than millennials (born after 1980) at similar ages. Assuming marriage is delayed rather than dropped, it remains to be seen if the former singletons will maintain their liberal allegiance.

Varying birth rates also suggest that the Democrat-dominated future may be a pipe dream. Since progressives and secularists tend to have fewer children than more religiously oriented voters, who tend to vote Republican, the future America will see a greater share of people raised from fecund groups such as Mormons and Orthodox Jews. Needless to say, there won’t be as many offspring from the hip, urban singles crowd so critical to Democratic calculations.

And millennials are already more nuanced in their politics than is widely appreciated. They favor social progressivism, according to Pew, but not when it contradicts community values. Diversity is largely accepted and encouraged, but lacks the totemic significance assigned to it by boomer activists. They are environmentally sensitive but, contrary to new urbanist assertions, are more likely than their boomer parents to aspire to suburbia as their “ideal place” to live.

Some economic trends favor Republicans. Households, for example, are increasingly more dependent on self-employment, and the number relying on a government job is dropping as deficits and ballooning pension obligations force cuts in government payrolls. Republicans would do well to focus on these predominately suburban, private-sector-dependent families.

All this suggests that if they can achieve sentience, Republicans could still compete in a changing America continues changing. But first the party must move away from the hard-core nativist, authoritarian conservatism so evident in the primaries. Rather than looking backward to the 1950s, the GOP needs to reinvent itself as the party of contemporary families, including minority, mixed-race, gay, and blended ones.

(Joel Kotkin is executive editor of NewGeography.com and is a distinguished presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman University, and contributing editor to the City Journal in New York. He is author of The City: A Global History. His newest book is The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050, released in February, 2010. This column was posted most recently at newgeography.com) -cw

Tags: Joel Kotkin, GOP, Republicans, Republican Party, GOP decline, Hispanics, Democrats








CityWatch
Vol 10 Issue 32
Pub: Apr 20, 2012

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