Conservative small towns dying
These people are watching their towns die. Watching their way of life die. They are living the end of their dream, and they didn't believe that could happen. Like their ancestors, they've worked hard and hard and hard. They've played by the rules, believed the right things, worshipped the proper God, lived as they deeply felt life should be lived, and they're losing everything that matters to them. And there's nothing they can do about it except to keep working hard, because that's all they know. They're losing a way of life because of forces beyond their ken. Giant agribusiness, globalization, politicians selling them out, a tidal wave of history sweeping them away. Republicans and right-wing demagogues play to them, so they vote for Republicans. But it doesn't help.
Good article. Blaming others may be natural, but it's no way to live a life.
son of parnas
March 31st, 2007 5:11pm
> They're losing a way of life because of forces beyond their ken.
That's true. Technological efficiency is stretching these community's bonds - it's like they were on a balloon's surface while it's expanding. Not all the old bonds will make it. Their community will need to be reconfigured to survive. That's painful and scary.
The article itself has a sneering tone though. There's a difference between compassion for another's plight and contemptuous pitying. The author seems to want to write about tragedy but doesn't have the heart for it.
March 31st, 2007 7:06pm
> The article itself has a sneering tone though.
Being hate for who you are not can do that.
son of parnas
March 31st, 2007 7:08pm
If they're voting republican, are they responsible for their own demise - discuss...
April 1st, 2007 2:21pm
It's fine to vote that the free market, low regulation, low taxes, low public services, and a large military will solve all your problems.
Except then it doesn't, and you wind up in a small town with the blue-collar jobs outsourced (free market at work, there?) unable to afford your local public services, and your National Guard people all called up to Iraq.
At what point do a people learn, that some of the situation they're sitting in comes from self-inflicted wounds? At what point do they give up some of the unreal idiology that's destroying them?
April 2nd, 2007 10:01am
It's not obvious enough.
It would be like a rat pushing a button and getting electrocuted for it months later.
Plus, there is a more than enough spin to obscure obvious associations in a cloud of uncertainty composed of tiny droplets of misinformation and outright lies.
But who can dig through that? Who wants to, instead of living?
Instead of just enjoying your Cheetos and wrestling, do you want to connect the dots, burn off the fog, and see the truth?
April 2nd, 2007 10:28am
Well, yes, *I* want to see the truth whenever possible. But you make a very good point -- there's a lot of uncertainty and 'distance in time' between when the decision is made and the results come in.
Shoot, some people still think "Supply side economics" works -- and I suppose Bush's deficit spending this last 6 years HAS supported a modest economic upturn. But we'll never know now what economy we'd have had if he DIDN'T cut taxes on a balanced budget and then spent 300 billion a year he had to borrow.
I guess it's voters who seem to vote on "deliberate ignorance", or "tell me what I WANT to hear", or "something for nothing", or "bad stuff won't happen to us, we don't NEED insurance", or "Taxes are the government robbing me" that bother me. And then they complain that the disasters that happen have nothing to do with the policies that they voted to pursue.
April 2nd, 2007 11:03am