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Old 10-05-2011, 11:16 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,120,672 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAVA1990 View Post
or had a virtual job like many folks (me included) who work from home for mega-corps located somewhere else and VPN in. I'm sure there are a few around there and more every day.
Working "virtually" may certainly be an option for some people and MAY allow a person to live nearly anywhere (in some of my work I could do that myself), but it is ludicrous to think that an entire community's economy could be based on that alone. A lot of people think that aesthetically desirable Colorado locales will do just fine living on "virtual workers" as the predominant economic base of the community. That's as dumb as thinking that a community can live or die on any single industry and have anything resembling a stable economy. As has been well-illustrated throughout Colorado's history, places that have tied their fortunes to any single industry have "enjoyed" economies that have generally been very unstable, boom/bust economies, with a lot of pain and social dislocation when things go into "bust" mode.

One also has to acknowledge that it has only been the schema of cheap energy and cheap travel that has made many relatively geographically isolated locales desirable to most of the "yuppie" crowd that has flocked to them in recent years. Those places become much less desirable to most of that crowd if the option of cheap and easy escape to other places for cultural amenities, specialized medical or business services, "sophisticated" shopping, etc. is no longer frequent and/or viable. I know a lot of old-line rural Coloradans who talk about the days when they could only afford a once or twice a year trip to Denver (and no farther). That scenario would work just fine for me, but most of the transplanted-to-rural-Colorado folks these days would go friggin' crazy if they thought that they couldn't "get out" a least once a month, or even every couple of weeks, to the "big city" if they so chose. When the full weight of higher fuel costs, deteriorating roads, disappearing commercial air service, and higher prices for basic necessities (most of which have to be shipped in from someplace else) descends upon rural Colorado (and that WILL come--it's already starting), a lot of people will likely develop a much less favorable opinion of what a "paradise" rural Colorado is.

 
Old 10-05-2011, 03:04 PM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,279,037 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Working "virtually" may certainly be an option for some people and MAY allow a person to live nearly anywhere (in some of my work I could do that myself), but it is ludicrous to think that an entire community's economy could be based on that alone. A lot of people think that aesthetically desirable Colorado locales will do just fine living on "virtual workers" as the predominant economic base of the community. That's as dumb as thinking that a community can live or die on any single industry and have anything resembling a stable economy. As has been well-illustrated throughout Colorado's history, places that have tied their fortunes to any single industry have "enjoyed" economies that have generally been very unstable, boom/bust economies, with a lot of pain and social dislocation when things go into "bust" mode..
But those virtual workers spend the money from outside sources in the local economy. In some ways they produce a greater net infusion than the locally employed since they're basically "cash flown in" without any expenditure of local resources. I'll bet virtual workers there make up about as large a segment of the employment base as many other major occupational categories such as energy or agriculture.
 
Old 10-05-2011, 03:05 PM
 
20,323 posts, read 37,832,470 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Working "virtually" may certainly be an option for some people and MAY allow a person to live nearly anywhere (in some of my work I could do that myself), but it is ludicrous to think that an entire community's economy could be based on that alone.
No. There is no theoretical limit on what percentage of residents can make their living on-line from any locale; the only limit is bandwidth. There will be plenty of people around to staff the actual in-person needs for trades people, retail, medical, eateries, casino's and tourist-related businesses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
A lot of people think that aesthetically desirable Colorado locales will do just fine living on "virtual workers" as the predominant economic base of the community.
No again. You fail to support your statement with any sort of logic or facts. Here's a fact that is not in dispute, virtual workers, actually HAVE a paycheck, and it's REAL money, but if you don't care to acknowledge that it's your own bias showing. The more people with paychecks in a lovely setting the better off that setting will be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
That's as dumb as thinking that a community can live or die on any single industry and have anything resembling a stable economy. As has been well-illustrated throughout Colorado's history, places that have tied their fortunes to any single industry have "enjoyed" economies that have generally been very unstable, boom/bust economies, with a lot of pain and social dislocation when things go into "bust" mode.
Lots of areas in COLO (and many other states) exist just fine on one industry, tourism. The Atlantic coastline is dotted with town after town that cater to people coming down to the ocean. COLO is dotted with mountain towns that cater to people seeking snow sports in Winter and hiking/biking/rafting/camping sports in Summer, not to mention hunting and fishing seasons. Though all of these are non-manufacturing uses, it sure keeps millions of people gainfully employed all over these ocean and mountain locales. Yes, agree that some towns like Butte, MT had to live and die on one main industry, in their case Copper extraction, and that is a danger in any state where any one town is dependent on one industry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
One also has to acknowledge that it has only been the schema of cheap energy and cheap travel that has made many relatively geographically isolated locales desirable to most of the "yuppie" crowd that has flocked to them in recent years. Those places become much less desirable to most of that crowd if the option of cheap and easy escape to other places for cultural amenities, specialized medical or business services, "sophisticated" shopping, etc. is no longer frequent and/or viable. I know a lot of old-line rural Coloradans who talk about the days when they could only afford a once or twice a year trip to Denver (and no farther). That scenario would work just fine for me, but most of the transplanted-to-rural-Colorado folks these days would go friggin' crazy if they thought that they couldn't "get out" a least once a month, or even every couple of weeks, to the "big city" if they so chose. When the full weight of higher fuel costs, deteriorating roads, disappearing commercial air service, and higher prices for basic necessities (most of which have to be shipped in from someplace else) descends upon rural Colorado (and that WILL come--it's already starting), a lot of people will likely develop a much less favorable opinion of what a "paradise" rural Colorado is.
You've been singing Kunstler's apocalyptic song for years about soaring fuel prices, etc, but they've yet to materialize and may never do that as we keep finding more oil and are drilling for it in many areas. Given the wealth of natural gas in the USA, if we ever do see higher gasoline costs we can then expect nat gas to play a role in putting the kibosh on gasoline costs.
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Old 10-05-2011, 03:43 PM
 
52 posts, read 106,483 times
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I don't like to join the "doomsdayers" crowd, but the days of cheap oil are all but over entirely. World oil production will peak any year now, after which production enters into a rate of terminal and ever increasing decline, no matter the new discoveries that are made. The point is simply that supply will be unable to keep up with demand. When this day of reckoning comes as Jazz keeps exposing it is going to be a very loud and painful wakeup call to society as a whole, not leading to its inevitable collapse, but causing us to rethink many of the ways in which we do things.
 
Old 10-05-2011, 04:39 PM
 
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There are plenty of places in Colorado that are not "existing just fine" on only tourism now--and that number is going to increase. Tourism relies on a large segment of the population having the discretionary income to spend--and for much of the lower and middle classes, that discretionary income is evaporating. I don't speak of this idly--I know people who own and operate tourism-related businesses and they see this happening to their customer base every day. Not to put too fine a point on it, but I have a far more extensive knowledge--from direct sources--about what is happening in the rural Colorado economy than certain "think-they-know-way-more-than-they-do" folks that probably don't personally know more than a handful of people in rural Colorado. I know plenty of folks in nearly every rural county in Colorado--and have had most of those connections for decades. I've also been through four decades (as an adult) of business cycles in rural Colorado--that gives me an insight that the newbies--now matter how smart they think they are or how much they might know about someplace else--simply do not have. I don't say this to brag or act like an arrogant b*****d--I just wish to make clear that I don't post drivel for the hell of it.
 
Old 10-05-2011, 04:53 PM
 
20,323 posts, read 37,832,470 times
Reputation: 18113
I'm not buying a single bit of this. If oil prices spike at some point, we'll find other ways to get around. Almost every year there's a monster new field discovered somewhere, and we're just getting started in the Bakken and other shales, not to mention off-shore and ANWR and so many more places where we can wring oil out of what were thought to be depleted wells. The fuel-born day of reckoning is well off and if it ever gets here, we'll work around it like we always do. And if it does happen, rural places in EVERY state *may* be in a pickle, COLO and Durango have nothing that would make it unique, different or worse than anywhere else, i.e., no matter where people live the problem will be the same.

Nor am I buying any smoky claims that tourism and skiing are going down the tubes, you've been blowing that smoke for years too. Here's a link that COLO had a RECORD year in 2011, so much so they ran of gear in some places. Falling off a cliff? Hardly. How many years are you going to call for the great apocalypse? It's just wishful thinking on your part, you'd like nothing better than all those high country resorts to disappear overnight.

It doesn't matter how many old curmudgeons around the state you know, I'd guess most of them feel the same way about the newcomers and those making a pretty good living catering to skiers and tourists. If all you talk to are old grumps, all you're going to hear is grumpy old whiners with a case of sour grapes.
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Last edited by Mike from back east; 10-05-2011 at 05:26 PM..
 
Old 10-06-2011, 01:12 AM
 
12,848 posts, read 24,506,085 times
Reputation: 18855
I saw an interview with the Saudi oil minister where he said it was critical that the Saudis keep their prices down for the U.S. "otherwise people will turn to other alternatives."
No wonder we kiss the hem of their caftan garments. I dunno about peak oil and Kuntsler, but it does seem prudent to use less rather than more, and to depend less rather than more.
 
Old 10-06-2011, 02:08 AM
 
16,438 posts, read 18,531,865 times
Reputation: 9490
I know well informed, intelligent people whose opinions I respect, some of whom are convinced peak oil is real, others that it is nonsense and a fraud. I wish I knew who is right.
 
Old 10-06-2011, 06:31 AM
 
48 posts, read 120,838 times
Reputation: 42
Default Durango and all small towns have major economic and social problems

Jazzlover,

Your comments are very insightful and I agree with 100% of what you say since it's consistent with every other small tourist town that I've encountered in the Western US. Yes, I have also been to both Durango and Santa Fe and they have very serious social problems - same with Bend, Ashland, Eugene, Flagstaff, Sedona, Prescott, South Lake Tahoe, Boulder, Ft. Collins, Bishop-Mammoth Lakes, Santa Rosa, Sebastopol, Guerneville, Sonora, Auburn-Grass Valley, etc. Suburbs of larger thriving cities are always best.

They are all going downhill since they have lost their traditional industries due to the far left environmentalists (mining, manufacturing, timber, natural gas, agriculture, etc.). And, Charlie Maxwell says we are 5 to 10 years away from peak oil (search charlie maxwell and wallace forbes in forbes magazine on line, free, for the interview). I have to get a masters' degree, if I want to compete with everyone else and make middle class wages. Otherwise, I will never own a home. However, very few of these small town colleges have masters' programs. And, most students in these towns who have graduated from colleges are receiving money from their parents or relatives. There are, however, some of us who do want to work, and who are fiscally conservative - yet Durango is no longer a fiscally conservative place with all the land speculation. Land speculation is against LDS teachings, isn't it? I know that it's against Fundamentalist Christian teachings.

If one wants to live in a small town, they need to bring 2 million dollars with them, as is often said about Durango. It's a gamble, I'm afraid, and it's not a place for anyone between 21 and 70 years of age. Only retirees who have lots of money.
 
Old 10-06-2011, 07:40 AM
 
Location: C-U metro
1,359 posts, read 2,631,430 times
Reputation: 1157
Default CO income tax

How is Colorado making sure that the "telecommuters" are paying CO state income tax? Bozeman, MT alone had over 200 tax cheats that they nabbed after they had MT DL's and fish and game licenses but were not filing state income tax. MT requires a SSN for a fishing or hunting license so it was fairly easy to check against the tax rolls to see who paid and who didn't. If the telecommuter doesn't want to pay income tax, they should live in WY or TX where there isn't one but if they live in MT or CO, they need to pay their fair share.
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