red and blue states
Feeling an absence of connection, many Americans have simply tuned out the majority of our intelligentsia.

It’s hard for anybody to warm up to the ideas of people who treat them with only thinly veiled contempt.

With any number of conservative commentators giving focus and substance to their generalized sense of things being askew in academia and the major cultural centers, many Americans have not only become wary of what most of our artists and intellectuals have to say, they've stopped paying any attention to them whatsoever.

Having become somewhat familiarized with the left-leaning culturati’s antagonism toward business, large numbers of Americans now dismiss virtually any call for increased corporate regulation as just more of that antagonism—even in cases when more effective oversight is urgently needed, as became apparent with the meltdown in the financial services industry.

Similarly, when a tanking real estate market touches off a steep drop in state property tax revenues, many people's lack of knowledge of what basic services cost, combined with a suspicion of almost all government expenditures as just wasteful liberal schemes anyway, enables them to proclaim with complete confidence from the outset that the state can—and must—continue to pay its bills without increasing taxes.

Meanwhile, on matters of preventive health care, some Americans have heard so much fancy-schmantsy nutritionism that they dismiss virtually all of it—even when their weight balloons into a national epidemic of obesity.

And in matters concerning the health of the planet, knowing just a little about the history of environmental doomsdayism has led large numbers of Americans to simply scoff at evidence that virtually all contemporary scientists interpret as foreshadowing a period of potentially wrenching shifts in the world's climate.