Results of 1991 referendum to preserve the Soviet Union
In case you’re wondering what happened, the Referendum in march of 1991 was not legally binding in any way. Gorbachev was trying to use it to bolster his party’s legitimacy during a period of political decentralization and to validate his opening up policy without losing control of the union.
New political posts were created to this end, eg. the presidency of Russia, and Yeltsin was elected president of the Russian Republic in July of 1991 and Gorbachev, who held soviet leadership bumbled along, attempting to control Yeltsin and others via appeasement, by deferring more powers to the republics.
With these actions Gorbachev made his own position tenuous and effectively irrelevant, resulting in a power vacuum at the highest post of the USSR. The august coup was an attempt by elements of the Supreme Soviet to fill the power vacuum and reverse decentralization, it failed as the troops stationed in Moscow proved loyal to the Russian president. Yeltsin became the dominant figure in the union instead.
He promptly pulled Russia out of the union thereby ending it (the union apparatus relied on Russian portion of budget to function), He induced shock market reforms which involved selling off all state assets as quickly as possible to raise capital for building of a private sector, much of the raised capital ending up in various pockets; this inadvertently induced chaos and destroyed the economies in Russia and surrounding republics (which were highly integrated with the SFSR).
It is relevant to note that he was receiving advice from Western European and American economists who had established themselves in the Kremlin as external advisory observers for economic reform. Gorbachev had allowed them there as part of his opening up policy.
Where does California’s water come from?
Mapping the future of sea-level rise on the Potomac, the Chesapeake and the Atlantic
“Climate Central on Tuesday released new maps for the District, Maryland, Virginia and Delaware cataloguing flood risk from climate change. The topline news is that roughly $42 billion worth of property in the region lies within 5 feet of current high tide and is therefore likely to be inundated by storm-related flooding within the next few decades as sea levels rise.
But the maps are more interesting for their local details than for the broad sweep of data. The organization of scientists and journalists is mapping flood risk on the entire U.S. coast, taking note of every school, police station, hospital, museum, roadway and environmental hazard. So it’s worth poking around to see what’s likely to get hit at various flood levels.”
Results of the 1995 Quebec independence referendum
Redrawn North America after the Seven Years’ War
The Results of the Scottish Independence Referendum
A series of picture maps of the Washington Metropolitan Region, created for the official bicentennial celebration of the American Revolution (1776-1976). Dated 1975.
Please view a full, high-resolution version of the map.
Image 2: This section of the document gives an overview of the District, as well as listing information about different Metrobus stops and the in-progress Metrorail (which opened in March 1976, just before the bicentennial).
Image 3: The section gives an up-close look at different sections of the city and inner-ring suburbs, including: Georgetown, Dupont Circle, Southwest, Capitol Hill, and Old Town Alexandria. These special sections point out landmarks such as Howard University, the Library of Congress, the Folger Shakespeare Library, and Rock Creek Park. It also provides information on famous buildings such as the Willard Hotel, the Old Post Office, and the British Embassy.
Image 4: The inset provides historical details about the District and the surrounding region: including a graph that charts the city’s population growth and facts about the National Mall and the March on Washington in 1963.
U.S. Exports by State
Average IQ for U.S. states.
Apple is richer than all these countries
Cost of healthcare in the world according to France’s biggest HMOs
I had a debate with my family once about the most popular wine grape. (I thought it would be Merlot…I was wrong.) This weekend, I was in Napa and it reminded me that I’ve been meaning to make a graphic on the subject. So here it is - the distribution of wine grapes in California. The land acreage dedicated to growing wine grapes is not surprising. Napa leads the way, with 9.60% of its land area used for growing wine grapes. San Joaquin takes second at 8.20%, and Sonoma, third, at 5.97%. Note the scale is nonlinear because so many counties are below 1%. Most counties grow more red than white wine grapes. However, Chardonnay claims the most overall acreage.
Data source: http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/California/Publications/Grape_Acreage/
The anonymous internet: daily Tor users per 100,000 internet users
Prose literacy in Canada
Global Earthquake Intensity Map since 2150 B.C.