Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624

Summer is coming. Peak Road Trip season in the United States. In Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624 we consider some road trip ideas, past and future.

Do You Travel Well?

Travel requires a bit of zen. A ‘let it come’ attitude. Excitable, exacting and difficult people don’t always travel well. There will be delays, bad food, wrong turns and unmet objectives. Those moments are usually when the magic happens. If you can let it happen. You want an objective, but you don’t want to over plan.

Weekend Road Trip or Mega Road Trip?

My preference is for the mega trip. Across the northern United States, down the Pacific Coast Highway to Los Angeles. Down through the mid south all the way around Florida, along the gulf coast, back up through Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Iowa to Minnesota. On those long trips you feel like you’re sailing. You forget what ‘home’ is, and let go.

So Much To See

Truth is, there are so many places to see within a day’s reach. All too often those of us who prefer the mega road trip forget the gems just around the corner. State Parks, small towns, little bits of forgotten history.

In The Blood

Most people I know who love long road trips have it in their blood. They remember warming up the wagon in the cold light of dawn in Illinois, or Massachusetts for the big escape to warmer Floria around Christmas time. Rock City, brand new freeways, Stuckey‘s, Travel-all and Howard Johnson’s.

What Is It About Road Trips?

You don’t need much money. Camping or staying in cheap motels. Alone or with friends or family. You see. Pass through. Learn. Butte, Montana. Duluth, Minnesota. Lincoln City, Oregon. Bizbee, Arizona. Mountains. Beaches. Deserted highways in the middle of the night. Everyone who travels comes back with great stories and memories. There’s no right or wrong. No arguing about whether Rapid City is better than Great Falls.

Enjoy

In Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624, just some thought starters for your next trip. Whether you’re pulling a vintage trailer, driving a brand new SUV, rolling in style in some kind of massive motor home or sporting the ten year old Subaru, there’s nothing like the call of the open road.

Sponsored by X Government Cars

Road Trip Summer Travel Adventure In US-Podcast 624

Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016

Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show Number 59.

In Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016 Guest Andrew Davis and I have a father and son discussion of some of the big takeaways from 2016 and a look ahead to 2017. This isn’t one of those big stories of the year countdowns that populate the media at the end of every year. Just some thoughts about the year from both of us. What we have seen and what we thought was significant.

Of course in the United States, the big story of the year was Election 2016. Father and son talk about the winners and losers this year and how to stay informed going into 2017. The biggest loser of 2016 was traditional broadcast and cable television news and what is generally referred to as the mainstream media. This year though, you could add broadcast talk radio to the list. The biggest offense for these outlets was the penchant for predicting the future, picking a winner and endorsing a candidate.

From the media perspective the biggest winner was social media and You Tube. According to a recent study by Pew, more people got their news from social media and You Tube than ever before. This is a tectonic shift away from broadcast radio news and news delivered over traditional sources like broadcast television and cable television. This shift has provoked efforts to control what news and links people see and hear on social media sources.

In Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016, the biggest surprise in 2016, for traditional media and politics in 2016 was Trump’s Electoral Victory. For political elites inside the beltway and those who believed what old line traditional media told them, the emergence of Donald J. Trump in the primaries, his nomination as the Republican presidential candidate and his electoral victory was a shock. The biggest factor in politics in 2016 were the misconceptions fostered by terrible reporting and analysis.

Late in the election season the Clinton campaign and the White House introduced the idea that the Russians somehow ‘hacked’ the US election. While a convenient explanation for bereft democrats, even at this late date proof of a Russian Interference is lacking. Moreover, proof the alleged Russian intervention resulted in actually effecting the outcome of the election is even more elusive. Father and son disagree on this topic. This disagreement that carried over from the radio show to intense discussions with friends well into the evening.

With change back on the front burner in 2017 our discussion turns to how to get good information. There will be a need to evaluate the performance of the Trump administration and arguments against its initiatives. With so called fake news, opinion journalism rather than good investigative journalism, having good sources is more important that ever.

Once you have goos sources, you also need context. Good sources include source materials such as reports, think tank studies, documents, and live video. Context comes from reading history, source documents, non fiction books on various topics and your interests. Both of us caution against pop culture books which are nothing more than the same type of rehashing and alarmist coverage you see in social media, cable news and talk radio. They are designed to persuade, rather than inform. Certainly one can say think tanks have biases, which are usually fairly obvious, but reliance on source material from different parts of the spectrum and academic interests gives you the background and context to understand the biases without being manipulated.

Finally, the big issues in 2017 to watch will be the Trump Team’s transition, foreign policy issues including the South China Sea, ISIS, Europe, Russia and China, foreign trade, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israel’s role in US foreign policy, United States Economic policy. Politically what the 115th congress does and how it does what it does will be significant stories in 2017. Supporters of the new President will be hard pressed almost from day one to defend his actions, and the opposition is treading through brand new territory. Both sides will need objective facts.

Finally, we have a little fun with the millennial obsession with smart phones and the hand wringing over ‘so many’ celebrity deaths in 2016 and thank the sponsored, supporters and listeners to the Bob Davis Podcasts throughout 2016. Happy New Year. See you in 2017.

 

Podcast 564-Trying Not To Talk Politics

Podcast 564-Trying Not To Talk Politics. Live from the Desert in Scottsdale, Arizona in Podcast 564-Trying Not To Talk Politics. After two intense political podcasts, time for an easy talker to start your week out. The real challenge of what I call an ‘easy talker’ is not to talk about the easy stuff, which or me is usually political. This time though, I got into some great content about travel. I feel a motivation to travel and have an increasing desire to cut the tether completely and roll. For good. What would I need to make that happen? About midway through the trip across the Great Northwest, now into the Great Southwest, a sense of well being and relaxation has set in. It’s great to visit friends and family all over the country living their lives, caught up with various pursuit. No matter what you see in the media about the tone of the country life goes on. There’s something reassuring about that reality. Coming through Eastern Los Angeles, into the California desert was a great contrast to a week of rain and wind on the coast. Joshua Tree National Forest is highly recommended. The desert itself is hypnotizing and I have the feeling the most dramatic part of the trip is ahead as we head east on two lane roads through Arizona to New Mexico and then Texas. From the plains of North Dakota to the mountains of Montana, Utah and Washington State, on over to the pacific coastal highways, down through the redwoods to LA, and now headed east in the desert I want to live in so many places! I have always loved road trips and you would think I would get them out of my system, but after a few days in Arizona, I feel like I am starting out the trip all over again. The longer the trip, the better as far as I am concerned. Sponsored by Brush Studio in the West End, Saint Louis Park, Minnesota.

Podcast 562-Father Son Debate Recap

Podcast 562-Father Son Debate Recap. Live from Los Angeles, California. Time for a father and son recap of the last debate between the presidential candidates in the 2016 election cycle. Mercifully, at least this part of the process is completed. Now its the beginning of the final stretch of campaigning for Donald J. Trump and Hillary Rodham Clinton for the White House. In Podcast 562-Father Son Debate Recap, you’ll hear the differences between how the younger generations see this election versus their parents. My view is, while Trump was more disciplined in this last debate in Las Vegas, he still doesn’t tell anyone exactly how he will do these wonderful things he wants to do. More frightening is the fact that Hillary Clinton knows exactly how to do what she wants to do. Both candidates offer state solutions to all that ails the nation. One wants to offer ‘free’ college and health care, the other will grow the moribund US economy by getting our allies to pay the US for their defense. The problems are much more complicated than that. Moreover, solutions that aren’t state oriented are more challenging to foster. We’re living in an age when more people in the US are getting used to ‘free’ stuff from the government. Building walls, getting allies to ‘pay’, ‘free’ college and ‘fixing’ ObamaCare are only going to add to the deficit and deepen our fiscal and social problems. This is why I say the current two-party system, stepped in old thinking, has produce two of the most ill suited candidates in modern history, perhaps in all US History. My son, Andrew Davis, has some slightly different views and he presents them quite well. All in all it was probably as substantive a debate as we’re going to get from Trump and Clinton. Our analysis touches on the debate, the style of the candidates, some of the current state by state polling, foreign policy, aid to allies and foreign trade. Sponsored by X Government Cars.

Podcast 561-Pacific Coast Highway

Podcast 561-Pacific Coast Highway. People have been asking for some ‘travel log’ podcasts from the Great Northwest Road Trip 2016 series, so in Podcast 561-Pacific Coast Highway, some travel log audio from Oregon’s coast during a storm, again the angry surf along the Pacific Coast Highway in California north of San Francisco. Most travel sites write about the Pacific Coast Highway south of San Francisco. On this trip I have driven Route 1, all the way from just south of Seattle, through San Francisco to Los Angeles right along the coast. What a long strange trip it’s been. Winding roads, crazy storms, spell binding coastal maritime towns and villages and breathtaking vistas coming down out of mountains. There aren’t enough superlatives to describe the experience of twisting and turning two lane roads in 16 year old Mobile Podcast Command laboring up and down, sometimes in brilliant sun and sometimes in the midst of fog, or heavy wind and rain, all under a full moon during these few days in the middle of October 2016. The biggest challenge has been getting out from under a series of storms that have pounded the west coast, from Seattle to San Francisco. In podcast 561 you’ll hear the wind and rain in Oregon, the surf in Northern California, and a little surprise at the end of the podcast for you midwesterners. I have often said long trips take on a personality of their own and you end up having to just go with the flow. Travelers who try to stick to a schedule, try to see too many things or get frustrated with the ‘trip’ are not good travelers. After thousands of miles through the mountains, plains and coastlines of the United States, I’ve learned to settle in for these long trips and just enjoy whatever goes down. This trip, the heavy rain and fog has been following me all down the coast, which has made it even more of an adventure. From pulling into state parks and RV-Parks in the middle of the night and hooking up to electric, to driving 8 to 15 hours at a time on the PCH, it’s been really fun and educational. If you’re looking for those romantic seaside towns tucked away along rocky coastlines, this is the place. There’s the reason they say ‘The West Is The Best’. Sponsored by Hydrus Performance.

Podcast 559-Why I Travel

Podcast 559-Why I Travel. Travel is good for so many things. Join me for a ride on the Washington State Ferry on the way to Port Townsend, Washington, on a clear, bright, sunny day in the Pacific Northwest. You’re inside the ride from boarding Mobile Podcast Command Unit 8, a conversation with one of the ferry workers, and a quick walk up to the main deck for a cup of coffee and a walk around the outer decks as the ferry leaves the dock. This is a big deal for a midwesterner. In Minnesota we do not have the working ports, the huge ferries and the breathtaking scenery of the Pacific Northwest. Minnesotans will of course say, “Oh but it’s pretty good here in Minnesota” and it is, but the Pacific Northwest is pretty much peerless on this front. Pines, islands, temperate climate, mountains, and the Pacific, beaches. Still every place has something it can call its own that is pretty incredible. I’ve talked to a lot of people on this trip and they ask about Mobile Podcast Command, or they ask about snow in Minnesota. So there’s that. Podcast 559-Why I Travel takes a look at why travel is so therapeutic for the soul. It softens hard opinions. It opens your mind. It allows you to appreciate the small things people do for each other, and it allows you to appreciate the jewels every state has. Believe it or  not, every state of our country is a little different from the other. Regions are even more different, and since this trip is a Great Northwest and Great Western trip, you’re going to be hearing a lot about some of the issues regarding development and the environment. These two issues are paramount in the west, and the northwest. Some of this was covered in Podcast 558-Pipeline Protest, and I am sure there is more to come along these lines. After the Ferry Ride, another Ferry Ride and a quick hit in Seattle, then south to the Oregon Beaches, as a big Pacific Fall Storm bears down on the region. One thing is for sure and it is driven home when I head out aboard Mobile Podcast Command. The country is not falling apart. Some people might be hurting and we could use more economic growth, but for the most part the highways are smooth (remember I am driving on two lane state roads most of the way, and they are fine, even in North Dakota where the oil trucks are beating them to death.) and small towns look prosperous. Sponsored by X Government Cars.

Podcast 558-Pipeline Protest

Podcast 558-Pipeline Protest. Back road tripping across the Northwestern United States. First stop is The Dakota Access Pipeline protest at Standing Rock. A few miles north of Cannonball, North Dakota, about thirty miles south of Bismarck, North Dakota. DAPL – as it is known – is an explosive issue for the Standing Rock Tribe of Native Americans in this region, but pipelines have huge implications for the rest of the United States. As some celebrate the newfound energy independence US Oil Exploration brings, it also brings problems. The biggest is the issue of how to transport the oil out of the state of North Dakota which cannot refine the crude pulled out of the Bakken Reserve. For now, oil is transported on trucks and trains, which may be more unsafe when it comes to accidents and spills than pipelines. At issue is whether the pipeline will rupture, sooner or later, and contaminate ground water. The people at the Standing Rock Protest say yes. The oil companies say no. It’s very hard to get a clear idea of who’s right and wrong. Myron Dewey joins Podcast 558-Pipeline Protest from the protest, which he does not call a protest (as you’ll hear), and for balance an oil company employee and lifetime North Dakotan Eric Nelson joins the podcast not as a spokesperson for the company he works for, but as a concerned citizen. Also check out Standing Rock Fact Checker, and this from Inforum, on Doug Burgham, one of the Republican Gubernatorial candidates in North Dakota. The Standing Rock pipeline protest (sorry Myron but that’s what everyone’s calling it) has certainly focused worldwide attention on the issue. I’m going to take you inside the protest, which is in itself educational. Whenever I cover public events, I am rolling the minute I get there. This time I caught some interesting and educational audio. (Editor’s Note: You might have to strain a little to hear some of what went down, so use headphones. I will be worth it.) Like many local issues, it is filled with emotion and an ocean of ‘facts’ designed to persuade the listener to come to the ‘right’ conclusion. What do you think? Sponsored by Brush Studio in the West End, Saint Louis Park.

Podcast 535

Sturgis 2016 & The Black Hills. A trip to Sturgis 2016 turns into a tour of the Black Hills. Lots of riders come up here for the motorcycle rally but they head out on day trips to the many historic and interesting places in the Black Hills. Deadwood, and of course Mount Rushmore to name two. Lots of history in the Black Hills, especially in Deadwood. In Sturgis 2016 & The Black Hills I stop in Deadwood and have a great conversation about the history of the town, the history of the West and what it meant then and today, with a local historian in character as ‘Colorado Charlie Utter’. Then it’s onto Mount Rushmore and Keystone, South Dakota. A listener to the Bob Davis Podcasts emailed recently to suggest that some of the political podcasts contained some ‘repetitive thoughts’, as she put it. It seems like, when you talk about politics these days in any form, you come to an impasse and it’s almost always about the voters, or the political parties, or the candidates or the media and the fact that almost everyone is disappointed in the choices they have. The great thing about coming to Sturgis, and by extension these other cool places in the Black Hills, is that you forget about politics. It took awhile to come up with a theme for Sturgis 2016 & The Black Hills, Podcast 535 but it finally came to me. With all the talk about the founding fathers and the US Constitution, maybe it’s time for a new myth, a new ‘theme’ from American History. The fact is, the story told by the dime western novels, Hollywood and later TV pales in contrast to the real history of the west. The Hollywood version of the west made it seem like it all happened in Zane Grey’s Arizona, or the Sierra Nevada’s or California. Part of Western History did take place in those places in the late 1800’s and even early 1900’s. Many characters and themes later portrayed in Hollywood Westerns and popular TV shows happened a lot sooner – in the 1870’s – in places like Deadwood. Independence, self reliance, working harder and smarter and the opportunity to reinvent yourself, and to jettison your past are all themes that echo throughout the region’s history and across the area from Deadwood and Rapid City, to Mount Rushmore. As Colorado Charlie suggests maybe that inclusive, opportunistic theme is what’s missing a lot of times in the rest of America. Sponsored by X Government Cars and Brush Studio in The West End.

Podcast 534-Bob Davis Podcast Radio Show-38

Podcast 534-Bob Davis Podcast Radio Show-38. Posting this week’s radio show, with new content, from Rapid City, South Dakota. The radio show produced in Wall, South Dakota just outside the famous Wall Drug…which is actually pretty cool. In Podcast 534-Bob Davis Podcast Radio Show-38, a number of topics covered during this week’s podcast with new content added. For one thing, the rumors that somehow the republicans will ‘Dump Trump’ persist. It’s more than pure comedy when people who supported the Republican establishment’s embrace of Trump with full throated enthusiasm are scrambling to distance themselves from the Republican Candidate after his comments regarding the parents of a muslim American Serviceman who was killed in action. Add to that the fact that more and more people are suddenly interested in the political process, and are sending me emails and asking me, “Who should I vote for?”, or “What’s going on”? I share my answer with listeners in this podcast, although some of you won’t like the response. Once again, we have an over stimulated population well informed on the political gossip, but poorly informed on issues; the issues that we’re actually picking a president to deal with. This doesn’t even include congressional elections. With republicans defending some pretty competitive senate races, the potential for Donald Trump’s candidacy to cause a loss of control of the Senate for the GOP, could be devastating. Remember, Trump was ‘the one who can win’, and ‘the one who can take the fight to Hillary’. Has anyone thought about the prospect of Donald Trump as president with a democrat senate? The man who has pledged to ‘spend more that Hillary’ on government stimulus? This prospect, or even worse, the specter of Trump losing the presidency and republican control of the senate has apparently just dawned on the very establishment leaders that so lovingly embraced the New York Developer as their presidential nominee just a few short weeks ago. Only time will tell what the outcome of this election will be, but it could be death knell of the republican party. The republican establishment has already killed the so called conservative movement. In the final segment of this week’s show we come to local elections. Specifically, a local election in the northern suburbs of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, challenging the current speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives, Kurt Daudt. An Elk River man is alleging that a local tea party chapter and its associated political action groups has violated Minnesota State Election Law. (Editor’s Note: I am working to validate the allegations made by Matt Stevens of Elk River. In this effort I have already uncovered some discrepancies in the citations of evidence, and some questions as to whether Stevens fully understands how the Tea Party Alliance and its associated PACS are constituted. This is material when considering whether they have violated state campaign laws. Moreover, Stevens has refused any further comment or interviews ‘until the primary’, adding fuel to the suggestion by some that this was nothing more than a dirty trick to derail the campaign against the Speaker. Those involved in the Tea Party and its PACS refuse to comment until after the primary. By law, the State of Minnesota can’t even reveal whether a complaint has actually been filed.) From here it’s on to Sturgis for the big motorcycle rally, and my favorite town in South Dakota; Deadwood. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.

Podcast 531-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show-37

Podcast 531-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show-37. In the final podcast from the EAA Airventure Show in Osh Kosh, we’re live during the reenactment of the attack on Pearl Harbor; a fitting backdrop after the tumult of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. While the democrats were meeting in the city of brotherly love the air show was in full tilt and so much fun! From camping on the tarmac next to your plane, to the possibilities and difficulties designing, building and marketing the flying car there’s a lot to talk about in this celebration of everything aviation. As we get ready to pack up Mobile Podcast Command comes the realization that the common theme running through all the podcasts from the air show this week has been the passion and fun associated with flying; or the Freedom to Fly. Optimism permeates this gathering. It’s present in almost everyone here, including the people that don’t fly, who come to watch the air shows and admire the planes (like me!). Optimism and passion are two emotions not present in the national political discourse; a fact revealed with one look at social media, cable television news or a moment spent with talk radio. The Freedom to Fly means the freedom and willingness to dream, to connect with your life’s passion. Again, something many people in this country seem to have forgotten. Not here at EAA though. There’s more than enough passion and dreams to go around from the air shows, to the war birds, to the museum, to the experimental and home built planes, and workshops. Optimism and passion are present in the conversations, and especially in the young people. With so many airline pilots retiring and general aviation growing into the future, great opportunities await those who learn to fly. I can’t help but believe part of the economic issues facing our country is a mismatch in skills between what we need, and what our schools are producing. Flying is but one example. So, amid the noise and grandeur of the pearl harbor attack reenactment, jet fighters streaking overhead while I record additional content for this podcast, and my observations about this unique summer experience, this is a little bit of a different Podcast 531-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show-37 this week. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and Karow Contracting, your Storm Damage Specialists.