Texas. That’s all you need to say. Texas. We start on the Texas Gulf Coast at Galveston and work our way up to Beaumont, Houston, on through central Texas with an eye toward La Grange, Austin, Waco and finally to Dallas. If you woke up in one of these places, even any of the smaller towns along the way, you would know, you could only be in Texas. Along the way, lots of stories from this Road Trip so far, including the drive up the Gulf Coast through Mississippi and Alabama, and Louisiana, ending in New Orleans on Saturday night, where Mobile Podcast Command was forced to break the law, in service of a cup of chicory coffee and a pastry from Cafe Dumonde. Sadly, New Orleans seems like it is still struggling to overcome the effects of Katrina, which is probably why there are suddenly so many parking restrictions, and the parking authorities so vigilant. So out of character for this ‘anything goes’ town. In Mississippi, you pass the beautiful home of the president of the confederacy Jefferson Davis, and one can only wonder what it must have been like to leave this gorgeous home on the beach, move to a place like Richmond, to ‘run the confederacy’; a really bad decision in the long run. Did he ever make it back? Then the gulf coast, with its brand new ‘towns on stilts’…literally the houses, the stores, the cafes are all built on pylons, to withstand floods and perhaps the intense winds of hurricanes, which come every year. The Bolivar Peninsula, and Galveston where I finally found the deserted coast line I have been looking for. Finally central Texas including Houston and finally Dallas. Both of these cities are juggernauts on their own. When you combine Houston and Dallas with San Antonio, Austin and the western Texas cities, you begin to understand why this state is so important, and why it is unlike any other. Sponsored by Hydrus and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.
South Carolina’s Vote. The big first in the south primary is over, and the undisputed winner is New York’s Donald J. Trump. What must have made Trump’s night, Governor Jeb Bush suspended his presidential campaign. More ‘suspensions’ are sure to follow as actual votes, upend story lines, predictions and prognostications. Meanwhile Hillary Clinton defeated Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders in the Nevada Caucuses. Will it make any difference for the Vermont Senator’s chances to defeat the former Secretary of State this week in the Democrat South Carolina primary? Probably not. Caucuses are completely different animals from primaries, where people actually vote. Let’s not forget on the GOP side, Ted Cruz won the Iowa Caucus, but lost to Trump in New Hampshire and South Carolina. As the news rolled over the wires, I took a little bit of time outside a hotel where a huge celebration was taking place, to make some observations about the race, the presidential primary systems, and the difference between traditions, law, and a written constitution. Are you ready to have traditions — not the constitution — fundamentally change the way the United States chooses its president? Between the tradition of state by state primaries, a grueling campaign effort that wastes money and winnows candidacies and efforts to slave the Electoral College not to state legislatures but to the popular vote — and by ‘constitutionalist republicans’ no less — how we elect a president is changing, and judging from this primary cycle’s wacky, craven, foolish, disgusting and sad efforts by politicians described by the same kinds of words, not for the better. IS the cream rising to the top? Good question. Also in this podcast, the first excerpt of the Bob Davis Podcast Radio show, heard on GCN Live. Expect an announcement regarding this new show around the beginning of March. We’re in Key West Florida for this podcast, getting some maintenance on Mobile Podcast Command and preparing for the next leg of this massive road trip, which takes us back up Florida’s Gulf Coast, the Red Neck Riveria to New Orleans, Texas, back up 35 to Minneapolis-Saint Paul. Sponsored by X Government Cars and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.