Primary Sources

The EU's suppressed report on anti-Semitism; the real relationship between pot smoking and crime; how nonvoting aliens affect U.S. elections; why Republicans benefit more than Democrats from high taxes; Al Sharpton's taste in hotels
The Republican Welfare States

Where do all our tax dollars go? According to a new study by the Tax Foundation, many of them flow from richer states to poorer ones, and from the Northeast and the West Coast to the interior. As a result, Republican-leaning states overwhelmingly gain revenue from high taxes, whereas Democratic-leaning states tend to lose money. A raft of what might be called "Republican welfare states"—twenty-four in all—receive more per capita from Washington than their citizens render in taxes, yet nevertheless voted for the tax-slashing George W. Bush in 2000.

"Federal Tax Burdens and Expenditures by State," the Tax Foundation

One Citizen, One Vote?

Should a vote in Los Angeles count more than a vote in Montana? That's one question raised by an analysis of Census Bureau data conducted by researchers at the Center for Immigration Studies, which finds that nine congressional seats would have been allotted to different states in 2000 had noncitizens (including illegal aliens) been excluded from the counts Congress uses to allocate seats. For example, according to the CIS, California, home to 5.4 million noncitizens, would have six fewer representatives if citizens alone had been counted when the 435 seats in the House were divvied up. The practice of counting noncitizens when making apportionment decisions doesn't just tend to exaggerate the political influence of states with high immigrant populations; it also has a striking effect on the clout of individual voters. Consider California's Thirty-first District, in Los Angeles, where 43 percent of the residents are noncitizens and cannot vote. Because each House district is required to have an equal number of residents, rather than citizens, far fewer votes are required to win an election there—34,000 in 2002, compared with an average of nearly 100,000 in the districts of the four states that lost a seat in the 2000 reapportionment.

"Remaking the Political Landscape," Center for Immigration Studies

Left-Wing Anti-Semitism?

A report blaming far-right groups for European anti-Semitism would most likely be met with a collective yawn, and perhaps that's the conclusion the European Union expected when it commissioned a study on the subject following an upsurge in anti-Jewish activity in early 2002. What the EU got instead was a stinging document implicating European Muslims and, more controversial still, the European left—a conclusion deemed so incendiary that the report was ordered shelved by the EU in February of last year, and has only recently been leaked to the press. In findings covering the first half of 2002 the authors argue that the confluence of the Palestinian intifada and the passionate debates over 9/11 led to a spike in public expressions of anti-Semitism, and also in violence against Jews and Jewish property. The report goes on to point out that although this violence—physical attacks, the desecration of synagogues—was primarily the work of young Muslim men, anti-Semitic rhetoric was increasingly heard from the far left, where vicious attacks on Israel and the United States often relied on traditional anti-Semitic stereotypes. The report singles out pro-Palestinian demonstrations at which Arab-Muslim and leftist groups stood shoulder to shoulder, and anti-Semitic slogans and placards were prominent. It suggests that among many European leftists, legitimate opposition to Israeli and American policies has metamorphosed into a belief in that hoariest of anti-Semitic clichés, a "Jewish world conspiracy" that is pulling the levers of power around the globe. A leaflet from a German anti-globalization organization neatly captures the idea: drawn in the style of Nazi propaganda, it depicts Uncle Sam with a "Jewish" hooked nose, dangling the world from his finger.

"Manifestations of Anti-Semitism in the European Union," European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia

The Trouble With Technology, Part 3,586

Indian parents have long been known to prefer sons to daughters: sons are expected to care for parents in their dotage, whereas daughters must be married off at great expense in dowries. Now an analysis from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) suggests that modern science is increasingly being placed in the service of traditional prejudice (as many had predicted it would be): ultrasound technology is enabling parents to anticipate and abort unwanted females. In 1961 there were 976 girls for every 1,000 boys age six and under in India. Today there are 927. In an effort to curb this trend, India a decade ago imposed a ban on the use of ultrasound to determine sex. But the UNFPA's data suggest that the ban has been ineffective, particularly in the country's wealthier areas. In southwestern Delhi, one of India's richest districts, the ratio declined in the 1990s to a shocking 845 for every 1,000; sixty-nine other prosperous districts in India also saw the ratio decline by more than 50 girls per 1,000 boys over the past decade. During that time the total population of India rose by 21 percent, to 1.03 billion, suggesting that the "missing" girls number in the millions.

Presented by

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus


How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.


Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.


The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.


Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.


Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses


Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Politics

More back issues, Sept 1995 to present.

Just In