As well, a hat tip to Pastor David (via FaceBook) for this article in Time on the Republican myth of small-town America; Joe Klein particularly addresses the whole small-town/Jeffersonian yeo-man nostalgia that the GOP has so effectively fashioned and hearkened to since Reagan and is now vastly utilizing with the popular Palin.
Since we're on the topic of politics (and we'll be right off again. It's just sooo danged interesting and infuriating at the same time. Sorry), RC has an intriguing article about how Russia/USSR is way ahead of the US in the fight against Baldism and Hairyism in regards to their top leaders.
The Amish have been getting some positive buzz since the school-house killings and their subsequent mercy on the killer. But I had absolutely no idea that not only are they not dying out, but they're sprawling:
The Amish are expanding their presence in states far beyond Pennsylvania Dutch country as they search for affordable farmland to accommodate a population that has nearly doubled in the past 16 years, a new study found...
Amish couples typically have five or more children. With more than four out of every five deciding in young adulthood to remain in the church, their population has grown. More than half the population is younger than 21. A small portion of the increase is also due to conversions to the faith.
Word to the wise: Be kind to the next buggy-driver you plan to pass by.
h/t to Scott McKnight.