May 19 2007
09:29 pm

Ok, folks, now that we've agreed that either Dayton or some place along I-81 is the most conservative place in Tennessee, what is the most liberal/progressive place in the state? This does not necessarily mean the most Democratic place, but it very well could be. And it might be a neighborhood of a city.

My nomination would be Summertown, home of The Farm. What do all y'all (or you'uns) think?

River Dog's picture

Al Gore's septic tank in Carthage, Tn

Seeping in rich liberalism would be Al's septic tank in Carthage, Tn. This is uncharted terrority - a virtual gold mine for tourists. They first go to the farm in Summertown and then make a trek to the rich liberalism found in Al's backyard.

Whadda ya think?

bizgrrl's picture

Almost had me stumped on

Almost had me stumped on this one.

Then I remembered, Barnes & Noble in Chattanooga. It's not even a neighborhood but it always appears to have lots of liberal progressives shopping, drinking lattes, discussing worldly issues.

Mello's picture

we create our own places

I know western TN is more democratic than ET but even here we create our very own liberal oasis from time to time.

Certain concerts, UU churches, juried art or fine craft shows and even specific Fridays at chain restaurants have all helped to boost my spirits by providing a temporary sense of community.

Elrod- if you have not met these folks then I will look forward to introducing you to our new Blount County Chair and a few of our CCs. You'll get a very warm reception!

WhitesCreek's picture

"Whadda ya think?"

I think that's a typical meanspirited conservative answer, rd.

Bizgirl, you do have something there. the idea of a liberal gathering would be served by a diverse group reading, drinking stimulating beverages, thinking, and discussing complicating things.

A conservative gathering would be more like a sports bar with cigars and drunks, discussing...I don't know, actually...I've never heard a conservative discuss anything significant, now that I think of it.

R. Neal's picture

2004 presidential election

Top 10 for Bush

Bush Kerry
BRADLEY 73% 26%
JOHNSON 72% 28%
SEVIER 71% 28%
LOUDON 71% 29%
CARTER 71% 29%
HANCOCK 69% 30%
BLOUNT 68% 31%
SULLIVAN 68% 31%

Top 10 for Kerry

Bush Kerry
JACKSON 40% 59%
HOUSTON 40% 59%
HAYWOOD 42% 58%
SHELBY 42% 58%
GRUNDY 43% 57%
LAKE 44% 56%
DAVIDSON 45% 55%


joe lance's picture

I still somehow don't think

I still somehow don't think that Barnes & Noble in Chattanooga (technically, but it's over in Hamilton Place Sprawl, so I don't automatically think of that as "Chattanooga") is the most liberal place in TN.

Also, there are too many varying interpretations of what these basic labels mean to give this exercise a well-defined outcome. Case in point: Grundy and Shelby Counties on the map above. Grundy/Marion, Davidson, and Shelby themselves represent at least three different kinds of "liberal."

I'm not disputing getting the discussion started, though.

Elrod's picture

Rhea down the list?

I'm surprised Rhea County is not in the top ten in the Bush vote. Bradley County's vote is why I picked Cleveland as the most conservative place in the state. And what is it about Grundy and Jackson County that convinced them to go for Kerry? Some of the West Tennessee counties voted for Kerry because they are nearly majority African American. But Grundy? It's got Monteagle and Tracy City, and it's 98% white. I know Monteagle used to be the home of the Highlander Folk School, but they moved to Jefferson County 30 years ago. University of the South is in neighboring Franklin County; maybe most of the faculty live in Monteagle. In fact, I bet that explains it right there!

As for Jackson County, there is historic Gainesboro, but I don't know why that'd be an especially liberal place. Then again, Tennessee Tech is in neighboring Putnam County and I suppose many faculty commute to Cookeville from Gainesboro.

Rachel's picture

Grundy County is dirt poor

Grundy County is dirt poor and full of old coal mines. I expect you have old time labor Dems there.

Rachel's picture

And BTW, explaining voting

And BTW, explaining voting patterns can be pretty interesting. I've become familiar with the patterns in individual Knoxville precincts during the last few local elections and you'd be initially surprised at some until you think them through.

For example, there's one precinct in the 2nd district (west Knoxville) that's reliably "liberal." For example, it was the only precinct out there to go for Madeline.

It also is the precinct containing Westwood. Mystery solved.

Up Goose Creek's picture


Precinct 25 in South Knoxville tends to go reliably Democratic. It's primarily Vestal but also reaces east of Chapman Highway around Moody and contains the homes of some very active labor leaders.

Less is the new More - Karrie Jacobs

Rachel's picture

#25 and #26

Yup on #25. #26 is, if anything, more reliably Democratic. That's Old Sevier, South Haven, & Island Home Park.

The further out Chapman Highway you go, the more R the territory. Although that's true for Knox County in general - the further from downtown, the more R.

Up Goose Creek's picture


I suppose to accurately answer this question it would help to define "liberal". That very interesting question seems to be being adressed in another thread.

Westwood is what I traditionally think of as liberal, Vestal not so much. Perhaps Westwood would be more accurately considered "Progressive", I wonder if Vestal is more "liberal" in the early Christian sense of the word. And how do you measure these things? I don't think voting patterns tell the whole story.

Less is the new More - Karrie Jacobs

bill young's picture

The 1st District

Got Fort Sanders,UT,Downtown,The East side & Holston Hills

Up Goose Creek's picture

First district

The East side traditionally votes Democratic, but I've heard some big African-American churches are vocally anti-gay.

20 years ago I would have considered Fort Sanders most liberal but now there are a lot of very conservative students living in the high priced housing.
Less is the new More - Karrie Jacobs

River Dog's picture

Discourse not Mean

Hmm. Not at all mean. I’m thinking Liberal places are places where those are meeting and talking about ways to figure out how to take money from people who work and give to those who don't.

A liberal sees something someone else has worked for and wants to give it away. The only condition is it can't be their stuff. It is just their nature.

Besides I keep coming back to this blog thing to see what you guys will say next. I'm sure this is part of what keep you guys checking as well.

BTW George Bush is the best liberal the republicans ever elected. Look at his spending and social policy.

I await the discourse.

WhitesCreek's picture

River Jrk...said:

I’m thinking Liberal places are places where those are meeting and talking about ways to figure out how to take money from people who work and give to those who don't.

I'm thinking you are either extremely ignorant or simply an ass. Hmm..Possibly both.

I'm actually thinking you don't do much thinking. You certainly haven't actually educated yourself and seem to have settled into a mythological definition of liberal and conservative that lives in your own fantasy world and no where else.

Perhaps your real conflict is that liberals want to use our common resources for the common good to help everyone and that contradicts the conservative imperative to steal it for themselves.

Andy Axel's picture

All these changes made, and

All these changes made, and asshats still get on here with the sole mission of disrupting the conversation.


Deliver this message to the one I love the most:
"I've lost all my money to a 300 pound ghost."
Squeaky was a sad child; the product of neglect.
Got stoned by a jellyfish demanding her respect...

fletch's picture

I’m thinking Liberal

I’m thinking Liberal places are places where those are meeting and talking about ways to figure out how to take money from people who work and give to those who don't.

I didn't know the boardrooms of Exxon, Shell, etc. were liberal places.

River Dog's picture

liberal, progressive

A noun
1 liberal, progressive
a person who favors a political philosophy of progress and reform and the protection of civil liberties.

Note from River Dog: As long as you totally agree with them at all times. If not they become rude, combative, insulting and want to censor your rights and civil liberties to express an alternate view.

Andy Axel's picture

Master of propriety?

Rude: "Seeping in rich liberalism would be Al [Gore's] septic tank."

Combative: "I happened read[sic] [the Knoxville Voice]. They seem more about glorifying local criminals (latest edition). It is a hard left anarchist publication. I don’t see you fitting in with them."

Insulting: "...there would first be required a long period of brainwashing and social conditioning, what Marx referred to as socialism or blogs in today's world."

Stupid: "[Warren Burger] attacked everything in life with a mix of extraordinary genius and naive incompetence, and it was often difficult to tell which was which."

Thanks for the lecture.


"Some days I'm afraid I'll go berserk, rip the Elvis Costello mobile down from the ceiling, throw the "Country Artists (Male) A-K" rack out into the street, go off to work at a Virgin Megastore, and never look back."

Virgil Proudfoot's picture

Liberal neighborhoods

If you go by political yard signs, Sequoyah Hills is far more liberal than Seymour, even though the former has an average income that is several multiples of the latter.

Go figure.

WhitesCreek's picture

Note to river dog

Note from River Dog: As long as you totally agree with them at all times. If not they become rude, combative, insulting and want to censor your rights and civil liberties to express an alternate view.

I don't care if you agree but I do ask that you contribute. You aren't. All you are doing is making unsupported pronouncements and insulting people in a nasty schoolboy manner.

As for censoring your civil liberties, no one has an inalienable right to post here. That's totally up to the our host.

But you do have the right to act like a troll and a disruptive jerk, and we have the right to point this out.

Your feigned injury is reminiscent of another non-contributer who is no longer here.

Bring ideas, we listen. Bring insults...well you see what happens.

River Dog's picture


Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows Or to take up bloging on a boring conservative page.

No, I like you all a lot! Disagreement can be productive as it helps you formulate how you really feel about something.

So, I agree to disagree but have to ask what is a "troll"? I'm new to blogging.

Bbeanster's picture

River Dog, your brand of

River Dog, your brand of personality disorder is very familiar to this board (the late, unlamented LadyVols comes to mind). You woof and irritate with stupid twaddle, and when you're called on it, you come on all Rodney King ("No, I like you all a lot! Disagreement can be productive...").

But your act is wearing pretty thin -- my guess is you'll soon be forced to make up a new pseudonym and we'll be seeing you down the road.

Andy Axel's picture


Use "the google."


"Some days I'm afraid I'll go berserk, rip the Elvis Costello mobile down from the ceiling, throw the "Country Artists (Male) A-K" rack out into the street, go off to work at a Virgin Megastore, and never look back."

River Dog's picture

Okay Beanster you have the last word

cooperhawk's picture

"ignorant, ass, troll,jerk, personality disorder,stupid twaddle

Who's calling whom "mean spirited"?

Eleanor A's picture

Every couple of months,

Every couple of months, some right-winger shows up, all choked up at his own hilarious intellect, and starts posting a bunch of tedious, easily-debunked flamebait he's sure will get the "lib'ruls" all atwitter.

Problem is, said right-winger usually won't listen to reason or common sense (which is mostly why he's a right-winger...and yes, it's usually a "he") so why bother trying?

I'd hazard the zip codes 37206 and 38103 are probably somewhere near the top of the liberal scale...

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