Travel Stories-Regional Differences Across America-2018 Primer-Podcast 703

These days the we see the US from a bird’s eye view. Americans eat the same kind of food. Listen to the same kind of music. Dress the same. Look the same. Right? Not really. Find out why in Travel Stories-Regional Differences Across America-2018 Primer-Podcast 703.

Media Says We’re One People

One people, one culture. That’s what they say on TV. Furthermore, news ratings depend on selling the myth that we’re all the same. We’re supposed to be nine or eleven ‘nations’ of North America. Or as ‘The Fourth Turning’ says, behavior can be predicted by our generation, or where we are from.

Except that isn’t true. Never has been.

Travel Teaches How Real Differences Work

I’ve been up and down both coasts. Crisscrossed the midwest. Toured the west from the Mile High City to Las Cruces. I’ve been up and down Skyline Drive and the birthplace of country music in Bristol. I can tell you from experience there are some real differences in Americans. It’s what makes this country great. In Travel Stories-Regional Differences Across America-2018 Primer-Podcast 703.

Big Assed States

First of all, these fifty states are geographically imposing. Even the so called ‘little’ states in New England are big. Each of them have regional differences that can play out politically in some significant ways.

Different Places Different People

Moreover the personality of these states depends on the settlers. When did they come? Who were they? Why did they come? Where did they come from. What ideas and culture did they bring with them?

Regional Differences

One of the things I hear a lot these days is, “Why can’t they get it done?”. Or, why is a state so ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative’. Look closer and you might be surprised. Whatever ‘IT’ is. Part of the reason are the regional differences that might surprise you. Find out about them in Travel Stories-Regional Differences Across America-2018 Primer-Podcast 703.

Northern Minnesota Democrats who support 2nd Amendment rights. Conservative residents of Mountain West states like Colorado that supported legalizing marijuana. West Virginia republicans who want trade protection and aid for coal mines.

These differences are especially relevant when it comes to congressional districts.

All Politics Really Is Local

In conclusion, 2018 is an election year. All of congress. One third of the senate. State Legislatures and Governors. Judges and special elections. The pundits, the media, and the parties will try to make it about national issues. More often though, when it comes to so called off-year cycles, all politics is local.

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Travel Stories-Regional Differences Across America-2018 Primer-Podcast 703

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

Podcast 152

What about ‘The City’? Central planners  use tax dollars to finance light rail, street cars, bike trails, stadiums, apartment buildings and hotels. The goal? A serendipitous experience. Is this a pipe dream? Do people really want to pay 1500 dollars a month for a condo in ‘the city’, so they can have coffee with hipsters? Or do they want a yard, good schools and lower taxes? You might be surprised what some new studies are showing. Things like bike trails, and light rail, paid for with transportation tax dollars move ahead, while repairing roads and bridges languish. What if robotics, driverless cars and delivery trucks, smart phones,  automated offices and other technology obviate the need to be in a big central city? Will all this ‘investment’ recreating the city of 1900 America have been worth it? Sponsored by X Government Cars