Media Lies-Travel Truths-Small Town America-Bob Davis Podcast 789

To hear Der Spiegel tell it, Fergus Falls, Minnesota is a very special place these days. The town on Minnesota’s prairie is in a deep forest. A city manager carries a gun. The local high school sports iron doors and metal detectors. Moreover the mouth breathing savages that inhabit this place all voted for Trump. Learn more in Media Lies-Travel Truths-Small Town America-Bob Davis Podcast 789.

All Lies

The most noteworthy thing about this story is the fact that it is a complete fabrication. To Der Spiegel’s credit, the magazine is sending a reporter to Fergus Falls.

This time to apologize.

Dark and Dangerous Rural America

Sadly often media lies tell us more truth about biases than their coverage. Especially relevant are the new storylines about the mysterious and the mystical “rural America”. Land of republicans and Trump supporters. Dark and Dangerous. Well spring of public radio’s murder mystery podcasts. Source of the angry and red faced nationalist republican.

Small Town America

Truth is rural America is just as difficult to report on and explain as any urban center. We’ll talk about it in Media Lies-Travel Truths-Small Town America-Bob Davis Podcast 789.

Travel Is The Antidote

More importantly, travel is the antidote for the half truths and fairy tales of the media. I have traveled back and forth across this country, east to west, west to east and north to south many times. There are places I have missed but in thousands of miles of travel over the past few years, I have learned a great deal.

The New Nomads

Moreover many people have taken to converted school buses, RV’s and even Ambulances in search of their own version of America. Here’s to them.

Have A Cup Of Joe

In small towns across the US dedicated to ranching, farming, and mining people aren’t just going to walk up to you and tell you their life stories. Simple observation won’t tell you their stories either. Travel takes you through but you have to stop. Have a cup of Joe and talk to people. Get to know them over time.

Sometimes Working Together…Sometimes Not…Just Like The Big Cities

Finally what I’ve found in these places are all kinds of people living and working together. In some places things are better than in others. Reasons for decline or improvement are often elusive, even to the locals. Whether it’s a mining town or a farm town.

Politics Doesn’t Make The Man or The Town

In conclusion, I am sick to death of reporters telling us politics determines whether we are red or blue. These things don’t take the measure of the people who live in a town, large or small.

Coast To Coast and Back Again

Join me for Media Lies-Travel Truths-Small Town America-Bob Davis Podcast 789. Hear the sounds of some of the places I have visited over the last few years, from a hound dog in Mendocino, California to the total eclipse in Makanda Illinois, and finally overlooking the Pacific Ocean on the coast highway.

I’ve got a few stories of my own to tell.

Sponsored by Reliafund Payment Processors, John D. Scott Personal Injury Lawyer and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul

Media Lies-Travel Truths-Small Town America-Bob Davis Podcast 789

Podcast 510

Final Primary Vote in Deadwood. We began coverage of the 2016 presidential preference primary season way back in summer of 2015, picking up the campaign trail in late January in Iowa, onto South Carolina, south to Florida, Texas and the south. It seems fitting to end primary 2016 coverage in a place no mainstream media will be on June 7th, 2016. South Dakota. Specifically, Deadwood, South Dakota; from Gold Rush to Wild Bill, to today’s gambling and tourism, Deadwood is representative of South Dakota west of the Missouri river, dominated by hills, mining and ranching. East of the Missouri, it’s all about farming and some great small cities, like Sioux Falls. South Dakota is the 17th largest state in size, but only boasts roughly 860,000 residents. As one of the people interviewed in Deadwood said on this podcast, “We’re not going to decide anything, but that’s ok”. My friend Brad Butturff retired to Deadwood recently. Over the years he has become quite the authority on this small city in the hills and is a font of knowledge about it. Brad joins me on this podcast, from the sidewalk in front of his home in the presidential section of Deadwood. We spent the day talking about the area’s rich history, took a tour of the historic Adams House in Deadwood, and visited a polling place. All in all, a great way to spend the final day of an uproarious, unpredictable and thoroughly depressing election, so far. But, after all, tomorrow is another day. Sponsored by X Government Cars and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul. (Editor’s Note: I refer to the Homestake mine as Homestead mine. This is a throwback from my time in Pittsburgh where there is a Homestead neighborhood.)

Podcast 469

Key West. Not what you’d expect. What is the urge to travel all about? Is it a search for that ‘perfect’ place? Something fixed in the mind? A weather-beaten cottage on the beach, in the moonlight? A mountain town in West Virginia, or Tennessee? The high desert? High in the Rockies in Colorado, or Montana, or the pine country of Northern Arizona. ‘The Search’ brought the Bob Davis Podcasts to the Florida Keys. While the keys north of Key West are slightly less ‘touristy’, close to what it must have been like in the 1950’s or 1960’s, Key West seems to have had a little too much success. If you decide to come to any of the keys in season, planning ahead is ‘key’. Even RV Road Rangers will need to make reservations, and will have to research the best places to park, lest you end up in a gravel pit somewhere near a swamp. And no, you won’t be able to park on the beach overnight. Standing on a corner anywhere in Key West one gets the impression that the best thing to do would be to rent a boat and head for the uninhabited smaller Keys that dot the water around the ‘big’ keys, if you want peace and quiet. God knows how much that is. There is something magical about this place, but it is getting shouted down and drowned out by commercialism and tourist pandering that sometimes takes your breath away. 145 dollars for a campsite for one night. 15 dollars to walk through a museum that features a video from a documentary done 20 years ago, and some artifacts from a treasure hunt. Breaking Bad and ‘I’m With Stupid’ T-shirts. Unless you’re staying at an expensive resort, you won’t really have access to a great beach. Vacancies? In season? Now that’s comedy. Peace and quiet? Everywhere you go you’ll be bombarded with music, in various forms of live. Old Town Key West is homey. The people all through the Keys are amazing and helpful. Key West may be considered a rival to the resorts in Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands, and other places in the Caribbean, but it doesn’t quite rise to the level of services seen in those kinds of places. Sometimes it feels like the Jersey Shore, but the Jersey Shore actually does ‘Beach Town’ better, in season. Back on Florida’s amazing Interstates, as The Search’ continues, heading for the Gulf Coast. Listen all the way through for a little surprise, especially if you’re still in the frozen north. Sponsored by Brush Studio and Hydrus.(Editor’s Note: Got a message from my best friend in Arizona today. I didn’t just mispronounce Islamorada’s name, I butchered it. My deepest apologies to people who live there, who will have a good laugh I am sure. I won’t even attempt a phonetic spelling. I’ll just have to live with that massive mistake, although I’ll hate it.)  

Podcast 417 – Nik Ludwig

Nik Ludwig. Live from Agorafest on Eclipse night, 2015. In Podcast 416 Agorists themselves talked about what Agorism is all about, how it works, and what they believe. Nik Ludwig has been at the center of this group in Minnesota for a long time and is at least the ‘spiritual father’ of the Minnesota Agorists. Talking to Nik is engaging, challenging and fun. Ludwig is either sitting in seminars and music shows multi tasking on his smart phone, sitting around the campfire or on his golf cart fully engaging in philosophical discussions or brainstorming future Agorafests. Since attendees were able to explain the movement in the previous podcast, Nik and I are able to get into a deeper discussion of his ideas, and philosophy in general about governments, and what Ludwig and other Agorists believe governments do … to us. These are the kinds of questions you won’t hear asked on the mainstream media, and you won’t hear these concepts discussed in mainstream politics. After these kinds of interviews people sometimes ask me, “Why didn’t you challenge” the interviewee on a particular position. One of the things I think podcasting does well is allow people to express to others what they are up to, and the listener can draw his or her own conclusions. There’s too much debate and arguing going on these days and not enough listening. Take some time and listen to Nik Ludwig and the other Agorists in an extended length Bob Davis Podcast, especially if you’re involved in mainstream politics. Is the desire to be an individual wrong? Is the desire to be an individual and to trade in truly free markets such a radical concept in America these days? Apparently for some it is … whether they have a D or an R next to their name. From personal nuclear power plants, to spaceports, and personal mesh networks to post World War I Eastern Europe, to individual freedom and the danger of too powerful government, one thing is for sure … you won’t be bored. Sponsored by Weight Free Wellness and Pride of Homes.

Podcast 413

Pre Debate Analysis. A Walk and Talk podcast in the late summer, the wind in the trees and a major distraction called ‘The Republican Debate’ going on. The last Republican debate was held the week of the great Motorcycle Rally known as Sturgis, which The Bob Davis Podcasts chose to cover, rather than the debates in Cleveland. Nothing has changed since then. A continuing theme on these podcasts is drawing attention to the problems and opportunities we’re missing while we argue about what Donald Trump said to Ben Carson, or about Carly Fiorina or whether Jeb Bush is going to become more ‘energetic’. Someone asked this week, “When do you think Trump will get out of the race”? Someone also wrote this week that the Republican Debates will be ‘the most important development of the summer’. Really? This serves as analysis in a week marked by the Federal Reserve Interest rate decision and Russian Troops landing in Syria? Surely these two stories are more significant than whether Donald Trump can ‘win’ the debates? With Trump the Republican frontrunner, the real question is how long will it take for the Republican Party itself to finally – and mercifully – self-destruct. What kind of an historical period are we living through? And how does ignoring the real opportunities of this period move the country forward? Who’s fault is it? Due to developments in technology and science, some good and some scary, change is coming. It can be managed, or it can come suddenly and violently; But it’s coming whether you want it to or not. What do you want? Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and Eric and Erum Lucero of Pride of Homes and Luke Team Real Estate.

Podcast 399 – Sturgis Part 2

Sturgis Part 2. If you listen to this podcast with headphones, you’ll be right in the middle of the biggest motorcycle rally in the world. Heading into Sturgis, South Dakota, on a warm August morning we are surrounded by every kind of motorcycle you can imagine. The highways are literally chock full of bikes, coming and going to the 75th Anniversary of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Despite its reputation as a rough event, Sturgis can sometimes feel like any other state fair, or big city event in late summer. What makes it unique are motorcycle enthusiasts who come from all over the United States and the world to convene. Sturgis is a town of 6600 people, and once a year the population swells to hundreds of thousands. This year, there were a million bikers. Some rode their motorcycles out, others trucked their bikes out and rented, or drove RV’s, still others camped in tents or trailers. Who comes and why? What are some of the drawbacks to the size of the event this year? For some, the the roots of what this rally means to them goes very deep. For others, motorcycling is part of family life. Others have just come for a good time and to hang with their best friends. From the big motorcycle manufacturers like Harley, Indian, Victory, and the after market companies like Ciro as well as people selling t-shirts, art, tattoos, leather goods, as well as the fun stuff like Body Painting, beer, and women who dance, this is a singular event. If you spent the week in Sturgis, you had no idea there was a big debate between Republican candidates for their party’s presidential nomination, and you didn’t care. From Main Street to the concerts and after hours partying, to the bikes, to the companies who come here to serve and sell to this singular cultural tribe of motorcycle enthusiasts, it is the people who make this very American, very real event what it is. Despite the inherent danger in motorcycling and its outlaw image, they are great people. And…Sturgis is really fun. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating Of Saint Paul

Podcast 396

Summer Walk and Talk. The rules of the Walk and Talk Podcast are: No prep. No Planning. You walk. You Talk. Slash and Burn, Walk and Talk. At the peak of the summer it still doesn’t feel right to get down and dirty on the political front. There’s still a sense that the topography of the political battlefield will change at some point, and it will be back to the drawing board for the scores of presidential candidates, who are as plentiful as the corn growing in those Iowa fields. Besides, there’s Sturgis, air shows, local summer celebrations, fireworks, kids playing on the lawn, charcoal fires for steak and so…much…summer. Yet, if you look carefully, the sun has changed its angle slightly and in Minnesota at least, we’re just a month away from the State Fair. Every year, at some point during the state fair, the weather changes and we all know what that means. Fall is coming. So if you’re tweeting and face booking about one of the presidential candidates, watching the 24 hour cable channels religiously, hanging on every word of every shouting match, you’re missing real life going on. While people engaged in the business of politics are busy … the average person in the United States couldn’t care less right now about the latest spat between Mike Huckabee and Jeb Bush, or Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton. Big stories of the summer? The Planned Parenthood video is a doozy. The Chinese stock market collapse (which is being called their 1929) could become the black swan story if the perfumed princes in Beijing can’t get control of things. A calamity like this in Asia would have far reaching implications economically in the US and the world, and in terms of foreign policy. Commodity prices seem to be in a long term slump, and yet some media outlets are talking about inflation. Still, all these potential game-changers are just storm clouds in the west, on a warm summer night. A little lightning on the horizon, and maybe some rain and thunder by dawn. The romance of summer supersedes all that political noise, and it’s a good thing. Seriously, who doesn’t prefer the soft hum of summer twilight to some gas bagger on a podium? Sponsored by Baklund R&D