Do You Live in a Wal-Mart State or a Starbucks State?

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By way of Columbia University via the all-things-rural blog Daily Yonder come these interesting (albeit unsurprising) maps showing Wal-Mart and Starbuck density, state by state. (The darker the state, the higher the number of stores per capita.) Not too many surprises here. As you can see, the Southeast has the highest concentration of Wal-Marts, while Starbucks are dense on the West Coast. Also unsurprising is the red state/blue state correlation. As Daily Yonder points out:

Blue states don’t have many Wal-Marts (except for New Hampshire). Red states don’t have many Starbucks (except for Colorado).

But is it really a fair comparison? Sure, both are giant chains, but one sells coffee and the other sells, uh, everything. The Northeasterner in me thinks it’d be a whole lot more interesting to compare Starbucks to its regional arch-nemesis, Dunkin’ Donuts.

With its “America runs on Dunkin'” ad campaign, the famously pink-and-orange donut chain has been playing up its proletarian appeal, branding itself as the coffee shop for regular, workaday Americans. From the “America runs on Dunkin'” website:

Mom and dads. Students and senior citizens. Blue collar, white collar, and every collar in between. Dunkin’ Donuts is how everyday people get things done, every day.

Starbucks, on the other hand, has made its name on making us feel like connoisseurs.

The vast range of Starbucks coffees and our expertise on the subject await. Find out what’s being served in stores each week and follow it up with everything you might ever care to know about our roasts.

Even better than a map: Preference for Hillary vs. Obama correlated with preference for Dunkin’ vs. Starbucks. Come forth, ye budding demographers.

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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