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					The Individual and the Megastate

“I’m from Texas.”
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Rural society where everyone’s a cowboy and rides a horse Everyone owns an oil well Everything’s the biggest You wear boots and a cowboy hat

The Reality of Texas
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We’ve changed from an agrarian, rural society to a more urban society 1980’s saw a boom and bust – many businesses and banks/S&L’s failed 1990’s saw a change to technological economy which outperformed the national economy

How We’ve Changed
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Growing population Economic transformation Increased demand for water and governmental services Demographic changes

Megastates
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Highly urbanized Rapid population growth First to experience technological and urban changes Our gross state product ranks third, while we are second in population

Context of Our Politics
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Treaty of Velasco permitted the growth of Texas as a national entity, and provided extraordinary claims to land Santa Anna repudiated it as soon as he had returned to Mexico Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo made the Rio Grande border permanent

Context Of Our Politics
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Relationship with Mexico is longstanding and good Gulf of Mexico provides foreign trade and investment, as well as tourism

Regional Context
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Regions are based on geography, labor, economies, and communities of interest
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East Texas
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Original land of settlement Highly agricultural and oil-oriented High oil influence More urban Greater labor influence

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Gulf Coast
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Regional Context
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West Texas
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Concentration of crops and livestock, along with oil Most regional feel of any Texas area
Texline is closer to Bismarck, ND than to Brownsville Farm and ranching, oil and gas and service industries predominate

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Panhandle
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Regional Context
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North Texas
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Dominated by DFW metroplex Most “white-collar” area of Texas (manufacturing, banking, finance, insurance)
I-35 corridor Extensive governmental employment, both state and federal

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Central Texas
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Regional Context
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South Texas
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Ranges from Del Rio on the West to the Gulf Heavy agricultural and petrochemical influence High concentration of Mexican workers, many living in colonias

Texas People
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Native Americans (3 tribes)
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Alabama Coushatta Tigua Kickapoo Represent less than 1% of population Little influence in Texas politics

Texas People
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Anglos
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Initial settlers mostly from upper South – belief in individualistic subculture of limited government Most early settlements in northeast Texas By Civil War, equal number of upper and lower South immigrants Texarkana-San Antonio dividing line – to the north and west are upper South (individualistic), to the south and east are lower South (traditionalistic)

Texas People
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Hispanics
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Very little settlement of Texas by Hispanics Some Hispanic influence in Republic (Jose Navarro, Juan Seguin) Represent 30% of Texans in 2000 census Primarily located in South Texas and along the border Growing presence in state politics

Texas People
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African Americans
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During the Civil War, 30% of Texas’ population was African American Largest concentration is in East Texas Also concentrated in Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston and Austin Increasing participation as elected officials

Texas People
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Asian-Americans
Between 2-3% of Texas population  Largest concentration is in Houston  Beginning to hold elective offices
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Texas’ Political Culture
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“A set of attitudes, beliefs and sentiments which give order and meaning to a political process and which provide the underlying assumptions and rules that govern behavior in the political system.”

Elazar’s Three Political Subcultures
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Traditionalistic
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A hierarchy exists which limits the power and influence of the general public, and power resides in a few individuals who perpetuate policies which may benefit the general public, but are secondary to the interests and objectives of those in power. Family and social relationships form the basis for maintaining this elite structure (does the name “Kennedy” ring a bell?)

Traditionalistic Subculture
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First to arrive in Texas, coming mostly from the South Few wealthy families dominated politics and government Government is a tool for preserving social order

Elazar’s Three Political Subcultures
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Individualistic
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– Politics and government are like a marketplace, not created for moral purposes but to simply handle utilitarian matters which are demanded by the people it serves.

Individualistic Subculture
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Alliances are formed based on personal loyalties Most often associated with cities and the Middle Atlantic states Government is a means for advancing one’s personal goals by working in an organization, political party or interest group

Elazar’s Three Political Subcultures
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Moralistic
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Politics and government help man in the search for a good society. Government is viewed as a positive instrument to promote the general welfare of society, and should actively intervene to enhance social and economic interests

Moralistic Subculture
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Last to arrive in Texas and still not firmly established Emerged in New England More likely to use government in innovative ways

Texas’ Origins
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Settled primarily by traditionalistic and individualistic viewpoints These two views blended into Texas’ unique political views
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Minimized role of government Skepticism towards taxes Conservatism

Population Growth & Changes
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Texas’ growth has exceeded the national average over the last 50 years Since 1994 Texas is the 2nd largest state in terms of population – second to California 2000 census shows population nearly 21 million Two new Congressional seats

Population Growth & Changes
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Birth rates are high, especially among Hispanic women Migration from other states, especially Northeast and Midwest Higher population growth creates demand for governmental services Median age is growing

Size and Geographic Diversity
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Second largest in land mass, following Alaska Size has affected state policy and, to some extent, perceptions of the state If independent, state would be thirtyseventh largest country Geography shaped historical migrations and land use

Urban Texas
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During first 100 years, Texas was a rural state Now 80% of population is urban Three of ten largest US cities are here – Houston (2.02 mil.), San Antonio (1.23 mil.) and Dallas (1.21 mil.) Population density (number of people per square mile in a specific area) ranges from 62 people in 671 square miles to 3.4 million in 1,788 square miles

Income, Wealth & Poverty
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33 Texans on Forbes 400 List in 2000 In 2002, 15.6% of Texans fell below poverty lines

Education and Literacy
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Most new jobs will be in the service industry As many as 50% of the jobs by 2010 will require a college degree The more educated, the more likely to be informed about and participate in political process

Economy of Texas
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Historically linked to oil and gas World oil price drop (1981) resulted in serious unemployment Severe decline in peso and border economies Another loss in 1986 with concurrent slump in electronics

Economy of Texas
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In 1987-88, many Texas banks failed State tax revenues declined, and an increase in the sales tax was passed in 1987 Beginning in the early 90’s, the economy started to turn around and Texas outperformed the nation

Economy of Texas
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If a nation, Texas’ economy would rank 11th Economic diversification has occurred, with growth in service industries High-tech has become the highest growing sector


				
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posted:7/1/2008
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