In a recent post on American Thinker, writer Sierra Rayne discusses voting trends, pointing out that Republicans fare far better in rural areas than in the cities and how this bodes ill for conservatives in future elections. The post included this map of the 2012 election results.
So far so good. Then there’s the caption:
Of course, Republican victories are more correctly highlighted in freedom blue on this figure, with Democrat wins in commie red (rather than Tim Russert’s backwards red state-blue state nonsense)
Wait, “Freedom blue?” “Commie red?” Tim Russert’s red state-blue state nonsense? Let’s start with the last one. According to a 2004 story in the Washington Post:
The first reference to “red states” and “blue states,” according to a database search of newspapers, magazines and TV news transcripts since 1980, occurred on NBC’s “Today” show about a week before the 2000 election. Matt Lauer and Tim Russert discussed the projected alignment of the states, using a map and a color scheme that had first shown up a few days earlier on NBC’s sister cable network, msnbc. “So how does [Bush] get those remaining 61 electoral red states, if you will?” Russert asked at one point…..In an interview yesterday, Russert disclaimed credit for coining the red-state, blue-state distinction. “I’m sure I wasn’t the first to come up with it,” he said. “But I will take credit for the white board,” Russert’s signature, hands-on electoral vote tracker.
So, in Rayne’s world, since it’s from Tim Russert, and it’s from msnbc, the dreaded liberal Kracken, the red state-blue state meme is “nonsense” and should be scuppered. Got it. (Although this switcheroo could prove awkward for the folks at Red State.)
As for “commie red,” well, sure, red is the color of communism, but it’s also the color of the Confederate battle flag, the Nebraska Cornhuskers, the Alabama Crimson Tide, Coca Cola, red velvet cake and plenty of other home grown, non-commie stuff. Whatever.
But what the hell is “freedom blue?” Here’s my theory: a conservative chafes at being assigned the color red, but cannot readily switch to placid, dignified blue, because it’s been tainted by “commies.” What to do? Create a new improved blue, not some fey Massachusetts blue, or a tax and spend Nancy Pelosi blue, or a West Hollywood same sex marriage blue, but a bold, patriotic, American exceptional “freedom blue.” So it’s blue, only a hundred times freedom-ier.
To any conservatives trying to sell this notion to their colleagues, I wish you not just luck, but freedom luck.