A Southern Ohio Mining Town Decays-Podcast 640

A Southern Ohio Mining Town Decays-Podcast 640 hits home, for me. Glouster Ohio is home to most of my family on my dad’s side. It’s been a long time since I visited. You hear a lot of talk these days about how towns like this are struggling. I’ve seen a lot of towns and cities on America’s back roads. Seems like this is one of the most challenged places I’ve been to.

King Coal

For over a hundred years it’s been all about coal mines in this part of the country. Back in the day, the idea was to get the coal out of the ground. Period. Companies didn’t care about the environment in those days and I would assume they didn’t care too much about their employees. This part of Ohio is the scene of mining disasters and pitched battles when the unions began organizing workers in the early twentieth century. My grandfather told me people carried guns in Glouster like the old west. My dad and uncle confirmed that story. In A Southern Ohio Mining Town Decays-Podcast 640.

Better Days

The Buckingham Coal Mine still exists a few miles from Glouster. There’s talk about opening a mine closer to town. I imagine there are still miners here. On the other hand, Glouster has been better days. I know there are people in town working to save it. As I walked the streets I wonder why this town decays while other small towns a few miles away seem to thrive. In conclusion, now I understand my Grandfather’s drive to get to a better place.

Sometimes Things Don’t Work Out

One thing you learn from travel is things don’t always work out. Glouster is already on a list of America’s most forlorn places. Especially relevant is the idea that this is the kind of town hit hardest by movement away from coal. Maybe that will change. In A Southern Ohio Mining Town Decays-Podcast 640. (Editor’s Note: In this podcast I refer to the location of a mining disaster as Mill City. It is, in fact, Millfield. A few miles away from Glouster. My apologies.)

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A Southern Ohio Mining Town Decays-Podcast 640

The American Dream Is Killing Us? Really? Podcast 618

Deaths of Despair” is what some researchers call them. Death due to suicide, drug overdose and the consequences of heavy drinking. Alarm bells are ringing. Over the last twenty seven years deaths among middle aged white people with a high school diploma or less have doubled. So many deaths it has caused a fall in overall US life expectancy. Let’s talk about it in The American Dream Is Killing Us? Really? Podcast 618.

Failure Isn’t Your Fault Anymore?

This is a lurid headline. Lurid headlines get attention. Writers are writing. Talkers are talking. Princeton researchers blame ‘Cumulative Deprivation’. We’re suddenly wondering if The American Dream Is Killing Us? Really? Podcast 618.

American Dream Grows Up

What is The American Dream? James Truslow Adams tied it to the Declaration of Independence. All men are created equal. We have an unalienable right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

Who Says You’ll Be Happy

When did it become The American Dream? Do we expect our government to help us be happy? Are we supposed to be guaranteed success in our pursuit of happiness. A house in the suburbs? Two cars? A great job? Happy children? Retirement? Health Insurance?

Economic Inequality

Robert Samuelson thinks economic inequality is the cause. Inequality causes slow active social forces accumulating and destroying the hopes and dreams of white people with a high school education or less. It drives them to despair. Drink. Drugs. Death. Writers like JD Vance add to the ‘White Trash‘ ethos with stories of poor, dumb white people living in Appalachia.

We All Have Tough Times In Our Family Histories

In The American Dream Is Killing Us? Really? Podcast 618 I tell some stories of my own family’s history in the coal mines. I wonder what people think we’re responsible for these days. All of us have some kind of despair but we fight it. We get knocked down and get back up. Live to fight another day. Never give up.

Get Up And Fight

Life is a challenge. It does not come with a guarantee. How we define winning and success changes with age and time. Happiness doesn’t require a house in the suburbs and two cars. Happiness requires a warrior mentality to some degree. Sometimes you just have to reach down and get it.

The American Dream Is Killing Us? Really? Podcast 618

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