Computer-generated maps imagine America redivided into equal-population areas

We’ll have to see if either NY or California can pass a single payer package and make it workable. I’m guessing it’s going to need a tax hike, who ever passes it, and there is little or no support for that across the board, even if it means that people will end up paying less to do things like get treated for cancer (which can be incredibly expensive).

And another reason FOR single payer is that it streamlines the process of getting health care and paying for it for everyone.


Costs are only one part of the problem, and much of that is predicated on the falsehoods of the GOP (the most prominent of which is that tax hikes will be more costly than paying premiums to for-profit companies). As with Electoral College reform, it’s not going to be a true single-payer plan unless every state eventually gets on board with some basic national standards and agrees to reciprocity. That’s not to say it’s impossible – Obamacare was trying to get a start on things and contained a potential backdoor toward a single-payer option that more progressive Dems might build upon.

California is still getting its budget act together, but once it does I anticipate it will be the first place to do it and prove the concept. It will definitely require a tax hike, but it will be offset by not having to pay premiums to a corporation whose first priority is not its customers but its shareholders (hint to California Dems: in single-payer universal systems customers and shareholders are the same people).


No, it’s a terrible idea. First of all, congressional districts are subject to partisan hacking, making it even more possible for entrenched political parties to cement their ability to remain in power at a federal level. Second, it would completely neuter the voice of people who live in urban areas. Look at the map for the last election, and you see an ocean of red districts with a few blue islands dotted among them - especially the farther west you move. Apportioning electoral college votes by district would overwhelmingly advantage the population in every state that lives in more rural areas, punishing city-dwellers who don’t have the good sense to live off the land like Real Americans, because there are numerically more red districts than blue ones.

Consider: Donald Trump won the Electoral College, despite receiving 3 million fewer votes. Apportioning the 2016 election by congressional district would not do anything to solve this disparity:

(Edit: updated the map to use one that shows federal districts, not state-level ones. My bad.)
(Edit2: I had the right map in the first place. Don’t mind me.)

Wow, you really don’t realize that Republicans hold an outsized advantage when it comes to the degree of control they have over the House compared to the actual distribution of votes, do you? Even if Congress was able to do its job as intended, increasing urbanization in the US combined with state-level gerrymandering has resulted in a congressional playing field that is also increasingly tipped in favor of rural citizens at the expense of the voice of city-dwellers.


It still has a vote from SD counting basically 3x that of a Californian. It’s inherently biased towards the lowest population states.


Yeah, OK, but you don’t appreciate them like Bretons do.

All kidding aside, borders that follow real terrain usually aren’t arbitrary in any sense, and it’s pretty practical to have things like utilities and jurisdictions follow such lines, so that fire engines don’t have to traverse the Llano Estacado to get to your burning house, and your sewer line doesn’t have to run under the Mississippi, and you don’t have to cross the Magdelana channel every morning to get your mail, &etc.

Hopefully better examples?


I think that’s county, not fed districts.

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Dammit, you’re right. Pardon me while I go find the map I’m actually looking for. I accidentally posted early by fat-fingering Ctrl-Enter and had to kind of scramble to get the image I was looking for.


That was definitely one factor, but nowhere near the only one. Yes, making sure the federal government had a status quo bias (both to prevent radical shifts and to protect those not in the majority) was important (and that’s not a bad thing overall, no matter how inconvenient it is for actual good ideas). That’s why they implemented supermajority requirements for constitutional amendments. Supermajority requirements are much simpler than the electoral college, so… why go with a different and much more complicated system for presidential elections? Partly because they needed to convince all the small states to ratify the constitution in the first place. Partly because they distrusted voters a lot more than most people today do - remember, originally the senators were chosen by state legislatures, not by popular election, and I don’t think the founders anticipated “faithless elector” laws. Also, originally the president was the one who won the electoral college, and the VP was the one who came in second. This was supposed to reduce the influence of parties - odds are your VP, who is also the person who breaks Senate ties, was part of your opposition, and you’d have to govern with that in mind.

No, they aren’t. I think I read once that senators representing something like 10% of the population are enough to prevent the Senate from ending a filibuster (aka >40% of senators for <10% of population).


Okay while we’re having fun with maps, I just wasted far too much precious time making this gif, haven’t done this in a decade. This is the population density of the country vs the last vote, by county. If I’d had more time it’s even more interesting with the % of bachelors degrees per county.

Hmm, anyone know why the Imgur hosted gif is not running here or why the BBS hosted gif won’t repeat? EDIT figured it out.EDIT, no I didn’t. It shows in preview but not in the post. EDIT finally, was too big.


Of course they are since it’s easy for us to forget how much we already spend


So is land in the country getting cheaper?!?! Those scenic mountain views and lakes??


No such luck. The scenic mountains and lakes are being bought up by oligarchs. Derelict small towns, abandoned suburbs, overgrown single-family farms, and trailer park lots might be more our speed.


I’ll take a town. A town on the highway to the scenic mountain route.

And put a lovely toll gate in.


We spend far more on health care collectively than the state would pay on a single payer plan. It’s bankrupting so many people, and at the end of the day, if we as consumers are spending so much of our extra cash on health care, we can’t spend it on other things, can we? It’s channeling much of our spending towards health care and coming to dominate the economy itself.


Thanks for both summarizing and expanding upon my position.


It’s an important point to make about health care, I think. Maybe raising taxes isn’t popular, but I don’t think we can afford to keep doing what we’re doing as a society regarding health care, because it’s too expensive for the population.


hey ive got an idea someone said long ago. lets all chip in a few dollars a year and we can create a fire department. if your barn burns down, it’ll stop mine from burning, and vice-versa.

okay, sounds great.

fast-forward. hey, ive got an idea. lets all chip in a few dollars a year and we can create single-payer healthcare. if you catch ill, it’ll help stop me from catching ill, and vice-versa.

don’t touch my money you communist free-loader.

it’s interesting to see that north and south seem more equally divided than east and west; but, that leads me to think:

the map really doesnt say much at all about the interior of the us. the division is probably more about how big the east and west coast cities are.


There were a lot of ways to avoid electing Trump that would not have required amending the Constitution. If you got Bernie Sanders to talk off the record, I am sure he’d have a lot to say about it.

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Yes. Yes, it is.

We have a system designed to prevent the common rabble from dominating the minority of powerful people.