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Old 07-22-2017, 07:52 PM
 
Location: CO/UT/AZ/NM Catch me if you can!
4,697 posts, read 4,328,991 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
CR, Ritchie sounds like an admirable sort, staying relevant and contributory to society. But at what point does dogged self reliance become more like being just plain old stubborn to his possible own detriment. Did he not use Medicare or Medicaid for his stroke and other medical bills? Why suffer? We all pay in and when we need it then it's there for us. Not using your rights as a citizen is not self reliant to me, it's self destructive.

Ritchie voted for Trump whose so-called health care bill will eventually end Medicaid in most states. The man he voted for never worked a day in his life and is the very opposite of self reliant. When you told me Ritchie was "a member of some fundamentalist sect" that sealed his fate with me; there's almost no chance of ever reasoning with such thinking which to me is every bit as rigid, dangerous and evil as ISIS or Al Queda.

The other day here in Phoenix I saw a decal on the back window of a pickup truck that said "a country boy can survive" which is a line from an old Hank Williams, Jr, song. The line is more wishful thinking than anything else. Precious few people anywhere can survive very long without fuel for their trucks; we aren't going back to living in teepees while we snare deer and jackalopes for food.

That window decal gets at the topic of this thread, the rural - urban divide. Loud mouths types on both sides don't want to acknowledge they need each other, but they do, we're all in this together. This "us versus them" talk is just more divide and conquer stuff the money class has always used. Even here in COLO, back in the days of Rockefeller running CFI, he intentionally kept his miners segregated by nationality and race. He then deliberately paid them slightly different wage levels to inculcate animosities between those groups so he could play them off against each other to keep wages dirt cheap. This is a deliberate game they play, to this very day, and the Ritchie's of the world are too unaware to know how badly they're being played.
You bring up some good points, Mike. It's a nice change to actually discuss something without all the standard name calling. Yup, Richie has used medicare for sure and possibly medicaid (I don't pry into his life). Why would he vote for a politician who is now against everything (nothing? who knows?). It may be in part because that politician lied during the campaign. Shocking, I know. He of the orange persuasion claimed at one point that he wasn't going to touch ANYTHING in regard to social security and medicare/medicaid. Whatever. Since I'm a lonesome Bernie Sanders fan sending out smoke signals to my friends the Utes, across the way, I try to avoid detailed political discussions with acquaintances and neighbors who I know it's pointless to talk with - this includes fundamentalists. I ask one or two polite questions, imagine what I might be concerned about if I stood in their shoes and try to find a patch of common ground - however small. When I want the company of my own kind I go hang out with The Grand Old Broads for Wilderness - a very cool group of like minded, very tough ladies who get an amazing number of things done.

I am baffled as to why some rural folk in the West (the South I sort of understand better) would feel that it is acceptable for the POTUS to use language that would get me banned from the forum if I were to quote it, why ANY kind of education is now considered elitist or just plain "bad" - people actually got angry with NPR for tweeting the Declaration of Independence on July 4th. What the...? And how can it be that a nation (the US) and a region (the rural US) that considers itself "Christian" has apparently never opened the New Testament? The one thread I see running thru the urban/rural divide is economics. Denver and Colorado Springs have the lowest rates of unemployment ever - probably in their entire history. That is far from true in much of rural Colorado. Where I live, the jobs are generally low paying, the rents artificially high, and people commonly work at least two low paid jobs, just trying to get by. An acquaintance of mine recently burst into tears as she described how her dishwasher had broken down, both her sons had just gotten arrested - one right after the other - for driving under the influence; then her lawn mower broke down; then her older sister just got diagnosed with cancer and my friend was afraid that her little girl was going to lose her medicaid insurance under the new republican healthcare plan. Three guesses who my friend voted for in the election and the first two don't count. *sigh*

I don't hate my rural neighbors and I don't think they're stupid, but they sure can act against their own best interests at times (and for that matter, so can I). I do my best to try to understand them and throw out the occasional word of wisdom. Economics and education - this is why Cortez hates the "idiots who know nothing about us" in Denver and "wouldn't survive a week out in Canyon Country."

One last thought. I agree that a country boy probably could not survive all that well out on the plains or here in the high desert without gas and 4 x 4's, etc. But I bet some could east of the Mississippi. I remember my Dad telling me how he plowed the fields back home in Kentucky with mules during the depression. He and his brother would shoot squirrel and other varmints to put a little meat on the family table. My Dad said if he never tasted another squirrel again, he'd die a happy man - maybe that was the reason for the smile that came over his face when he passed. So, I do think that tough, resilient rural folk who eschew the San Luis Valley in favor of places like Eastern Kentucky Bluegrass Country might indeed survive - good times would be had by all who love using mules to plow the land, canning everything in sight and just love a nice squirrel stew or a possum roast over an open fire. I bet they wouldn't be singing hymns of praise about it, though.
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Old 07-23-2017, 06:12 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,787 posts, read 4,890,585 times
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My take on the rural vs urban points of view is that the rural folks are proud of their ability to make it alone without depending on the government for handouts.

I do understand where they are coming from.

When I was 17, just starting college, and my dad had died, left me $10, and I was totally on my own, and I was in a checkout line at Safeway to buy $1 worth of dry spaghetti noodles and a packet of tomato sauce and I observed others in line using food stamps to buy steak, I was a bit annoyed. So I understand the feeling. I found out later that I would have qualified for food stamps, but the thought never occurred to me. I was proud to be making it on my own and I was determined to gut it out and earn my engineering degree. Perhaps it was because I knew my situation was temporary; theirs was permanent.

The truth is that there are huge Ag supports in the Federal budget and the rural health care system is heavily dependent on Medicaid. But people respond more to perception than reality.

Trump lied through his teeth to get elected and the rubes fell for it. Evidently, they could not understand that he is just a con man.

If he had applied for a job in my company, he would have not even made it to an interview. Sexual predators need not apply.

I don't think the tax-cut-disguised-as-health-care plan will get through Congress. If it does, it will do great harm to the medical care for rural areas and that will just hasten their demise.

As to how fix this, I really don't know. The key is good jobs. The rural areas lost them and I don't see them returning. I really don't expect globalization to unwind unless we have a huge disaster such as another huge war.
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Old 07-23-2017, 09:35 AM
 
5,304 posts, read 2,752,250 times
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I think the definition of self-reliance has gotten way too politicized, as in the opinion above.

Self-reliance is broader than "govt aid vs no govt aid". It is an attitude that values resourcefulness and *always trying to help yourself before you ask someone else for help*. This is not the same as never asking for help!. It just means you do your damndest to take care of problems without burdening others unnecessarily. That's all.

A 100-yr snowstorm quarantined my old neighborhood, snow depths of 6 ft with higher drifts. Afterward, one of the neighbors made snowshoes so he could get to his wood shed (power was out for most of the week). Converted two tennis rackets into a pair of snowshoes, and yes it worked! I could not help but contrast that with my sister-in-law in the suburbs who, in a much smaller storm another time, didn't bother to lift a shovel and didn't even try to telephone a neighbor's kid to pay them to shovel the small driveway of maybe 2 ft of snow. Then she lambasted my brother who had been traveling out of state on business. For what, not flying home to do what she could have done herself, or at least hiring someone else? Apparently, she expected other people to do the work for her just because there WERE other houses nearby, and that people read minds.

I am not saying all rural dwellers are self-sufficient or all others are not. But the environment and availability of services (or lack thereof) definitely has an effect on how much people will do to help themselves. Necessity is the mother of not only invention, but of initiative.

Last edited by pikabike; 07-23-2017 at 09:54 AM..
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Old 07-23-2017, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
3,042 posts, read 2,074,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
Even here in COLO, back in the days of Rockefeller running CFI, he intentionally kept his miners segregated by nationality and race. He then deliberately paid them slightly different wage levels to inculcate animosities between those groups so he could play them off against each other to keep wages dirt cheap. This is a deliberate game they play, to this very day, and the Ritchie's of the world are too unaware to know how badly they're being played.

This, unfortunately, is very, very true, IMO, and I'm sad more people don't see it. Just because we aren't breaking our backs drilling rock or shoveling coal, doesn't mean it isn't happening and it seems many well educated people think that technology has lifted us above such a divide that was the norm a century ago.

I had distant family who were lost at Ludlow. As a family of immigrant miners, this as never spoken about much at all by my Great-Grand parents because many feared such an incident could just as easily occur in the Colo Spgs, Boulder, or Superior areas, and all the sons were always pushed to not enter work in the mines. My Grandfather took this advice and did a WW2 tour in the Navy, and transferred to the Air Force through Korea and Vietnam. When he finally "retired" he went to work for the civil service at the Bureau of Indian Affairs. It wasn't until seeing this side of things that he started to become vocal about his view of the world and what he saw as an us/them divide that he had heard about as a boy. I was, unfortunately, too young to be too mindful of his talks, and have often found myself since wondering what I could have learned had a listened better.

I'm also surprised that so many seem to be taking a political party lines as a religious gospel that cannot be compromised, despite the fact that both side have demonstrated incompetence, greed, illegal behavior, and a lack of concern for those they represent.

We cannot continue down the Us vs Them mentality of political exclusiveness. Neither side is absolutely right nor wrong.

Last edited by TCHP; 07-23-2017 at 10:09 AM..
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Old 07-23-2017, 01:32 PM
 
20,836 posts, read 39,041,284 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vision67 View Post
My take on the rural vs urban points of view is that the rural folks are proud of their ability to make it alone without depending on the government for handouts.

I do understand where they are coming from...snip...
I hear them, but can tell the world that urban folks are self reliant too, BTDT in my own family. We lived within two miles of the city limits of Baltimore, back in the 1950s when it was smokestack America, and most people had job enough to get by.

October 1958, Dad was 53, had a stroke, couldn't work, bedridden for months, never able to work again. House AND car repossessed. Booted out. Mom worked seven days a week for tips in a local eatery. Her coworker left bags of food on our doorstep. Her coworker was an Italian woman, Lola, immigrant, heavy accent. Her husband was a fighter pilot in WW-2. She watched him take off from Hickam Field in Hawaii on 7 Dec 1941 and saw a Japanese fighter plane shoot him down and kill him. We had no safety net. No government handouts. People took care of each other. Moved many times over the next several years until things finally stabilized. Self reliance is everywhere, it just looks different depending on locality. Rural folks can grow food, hunt deer. Folks in urban areas can usually find something to do. I've enough age and 'widsom' to not believe in the us/them game, even if they do it innocently, it generally just isn't true though moochers are everywhere too.

I know it sounds odd, but discussion of self reliance / hard work rings a bell with me from having read a biography on football great Johnny Unitas (JU). Back in 1958 (again) he was quite the hero in Baltimore. I watched him on B&W TV win the 'greatest game ever played' in December 1958 as my father lay behind me in his sick bed in the living room. JU was from that hard-nosed industrial area around Pittsburgh and the bio went into the days of JU's parents and grandparents trying to stay solvent in the lean days of the early 20th century. Those folks worked multiple jobs to make ends meet, no safety net then either. JU studied all day and shoveled coal in the evenings to make $1.50 for shoveling 3 tons into people's basements. JU's father died at 38 after working himself to a frazzle delivering and shoveling coal. Urban folks who were incredibly motivated and self reliant. There's a ton more I could add about JU and his immigrant miner ancestors in WV and PA, but I'll just refer readers to the book about JU by Callahan.

Back on topic. The urban/rural divide has definitely been put into play in COLO by people with a political agenda, such as some of the rural counties claiming they wanted to 'secede from the state.' That stuff quickly died when financial facts of life showed that COLO rural areas are recipients of tax money coming from urban areas that ends up spent in rural areas. The rural counties would be financial basket cases were it not for urban tax monies. The same is true nationwide, the 'blue' states get back less in federal dollars than they put in and 'red' states don't pay their own way and are subsidized by CA, NY, etc.

Overall, IMO the urban/rural divide is a myth we'd be better off relegating to the dustbin of political quackery. Above all, I want everyone to realize that WE are all in this TOGETHER.
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Last edited by Mike from back east; 07-23-2017 at 01:54 PM..
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Old 07-23-2017, 05:20 PM
 
16,505 posts, read 20,899,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado Rambler View Post
I would say yes and no on that one. Here in rural Montezuma County our schools are awful - literally. We come in second from the bottom of all Colorado counties. The smart kids, the kids who want to make something of themselves can't get away fast enough. Then there are the kids who come from poorer families in addition to suffering from the crummy education they get from the local schools. If you want to live in a part of Colorado that's actually worse than the Eastern Plains, I recommend Nucla/Naturita just a hop and a skip across the Uncompahgre Plateau from Montrose (3 hour's drive from Montrose no matter what route you take). Ladies and gentlemen, if you want isolation, these two towns have plenty to offer and not much else. Those two towns somehow stagger along, hoping for the return of the mining industry - uranium mining that is. All of western Montrose County should be written off as a superfund cleanup site, but that ain't happening. To somebody's credit, the town of Uravan did get completely razed and paved over and is now surrounded by a nice tall barb wire fence. For some reason, it still shows up on Colorado State maps - maybe somebody's weird idea of a joke.

At one point, I lived in that region for close to a year. Some of the finest people you could ever hope to meet live there - and some of the worst. Nucla/Naturita doesn't have its own law enforcement. The Montrose County Sheriff's office sends out whoever is due for a punishment tour out there to "police" the area. I use the term "police" advisedly. When I lived there, the guy who drove around in the sheriff's car mostly left it parked at the local meth dealer's place. If anything went seriously wrong out there, people would go to the man who more or less had been holding the community together since forever. He was the former town mayor of Naturita, former sheriff of Naturita (back when Naturita actually had its own town sheriff) and he'd pretty much helped rebuilt the major part of Telluride when Telluride decided to turn itself from a mining ghost town to the glamorous spot it is today. One of those "salt of the earth" types for sure. The community was very lucky to have him (he originally came from Cali).

Some friends of mine asked me to tutor their daughter who was actually managing to fail 5th grade in Paradox where her parents had her bused to school because supposedly, the schools were "better" there. I advised the parents to suck it up and send her to school in Telluride (about equi-distant from Paradox). But the parents belonged to a religious sect which considered Telluride to be the ***** of Babylon or something. I did my best. I got her to learn her times tables, at least.

Even after all this time, I am amazed at how awful education in rural Colorado can be. I know full well how horrible the Third World can be, but I swear. Someone should make poster kids of those children in places like Egnar and Paradox and Nucla.
Very accurate description by Colorado Rambler here. A few notes from me--


That area of the state has been derided and the recipient of jokes from the hoity toity set for a long, long time. The Union Carbide Plant in Uravan kept those towns going literally by themselves. When the plant shut its doors in 1986, the locals knew they were in for trouble. This area is a two hour drive plus in any direction ya want to go, be it Montrose, Durango, Cortez, or Grand Junction. After 6 months the unemployment was starting to dry up. Some people had to go out of town or out of state to find any sort of temporary work to support the family. Then after a years time they most likely had to file a new unemployment claim.

Why didn't they leave in the first place? They knew they weren't going to get squat for their house if they put it up for sale. At that time Colorado was slowly going into a recession of their own. Mind you, this was 30 years ago. Home based businesses? Ha!

There is another thread on this subject I;m going to bring up to date.

Mike From Back East! Good notes on Johnny Unitas, have a story for you on him.
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Old 07-23-2017, 07:33 PM
 
16,505 posts, read 20,899,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
I hear them, but can tell the world that urban folks are self reliant too, BTDT in my own family. We lived within two miles of the city limits of Baltimore, back in the 1950s when it was smokestack America, and most people had job enough to get by.

October 1958, Dad was 53, had a stroke, couldn't work, bedridden for months, never able to work again. House AND car repossessed. Booted out. Mom worked seven days a week for tips in a local eatery. Her coworker left bags of food on our doorstep. Her coworker was an Italian woman, Lola, immigrant, heavy accent. Her husband was a fighter pilot in WW-2. She watched him take off from Hickam Field in Hawaii on 7 Dec 1941 and saw a Japanese fighter plane shoot him down and kill him. We had no safety net. No government handouts. People took care of each other. Moved many times over the next several years until things finally stabilized. Self reliance is everywhere, it just looks different depending on locality. Rural folks can grow food, hunt deer. Folks in urban areas can usually find something to do. I've enough age and 'widsom' to not believe in the us/them game, even if they do it innocently, it generally just isn't true though moochers are everywhere too.

I know it sounds odd, but discussion of self reliance / hard work rings a bell with me from having read a biography on football great Johnny Unitas (JU). Back in 1958 (again) he was quite the hero in Baltimore. I watched him on B&W TV win the 'greatest game ever played' in December 1958 as my father lay behind me in his sick bed in the living room. JU was from that hard-nosed industrial area around Pittsburgh and the bio went into the days of JU's parents and grandparents trying to stay solvent in the lean days of the early 20th century. Those folks worked multiple jobs to make ends meet, no safety net then either. JU studied all day and shoveled coal in the evenings to make $1.50 for shoveling 3 tons into people's basements. JU's father died at 38 after working himself to a frazzle delivering and shoveling coal. Urban folks who were incredibly motivated and self reliant. There's a ton more I could add about JU and his immigrant miner ancestors in WV and PA, but I'll just refer readers to the book about JU by Callahan.
Unitas was actually drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers, a low round choice, and was cut. For the next year and a half between construction jobs he played semipro football for the Bloomfield Rams, got paid $6 a game. Got a break when someone mailed a postcard to Weeb Eubank, head coach of the Baltimore Colts. When qb George Shaw busted his leg in week 2 of the '56 season, Unitas showed what he could do. In 1998 the Sporting News magazine named their top 100 players in NFL history, Unitas came in second. Jim Brown was first.

Unitas>>>>>BLUE COLLAR! In "the Greatest Game Ever Played" that Mike referred to, Johnny was named MVP of that championship game. The next weekend on the "Pat Boone Chevy Showroom" television show, the president of Sport magazine awarded Unitas with a trophy and a new '59 Corvette for being the MVP. A couple weeks later Unitas traded in the Vette and got a new station wagon instead. When asked why, he said "I can't fit the wife and kids into this thing, I need a station wagon so we can go to the grocery store, buy groceries, and come back in one trip!!

Johnny Unitas-Blue Collar----and the face of the National Football League----then, now, always.
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Old 07-23-2017, 08:03 PM
 
13,290 posts, read 25,455,947 times
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I am very much interested in this cogent and thoughtful discussion of the state I'll be moving to next April.

One thing I really like about the CO forum is that broader issues are discussed. Remember the very long discussion of water rights? In my (current) home forum for Massachusetts, broader issues fall way before the discussions of best suburbs/great schools for all the techies moving to eastern Mass. Different problems thereof, but not very interesting reading. Or life, for that matter. Keep 'em coming, you people there on the ground!
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Old 07-23-2017, 08:30 PM
 
5,304 posts, read 2,752,250 times
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Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
I am very much interested in this cogent and thoughtful discussion of the state I'll be moving to next April.

One thing I really like about the CO forum is that broader issues are discussed. Remember the very long discussion of water rights? In my (current) home forum for Massachusetts, broader issues fall way before the discussions of best suburbs/great schools for all the techies moving to eastern Mass. Different problems thereof, but not very interesting reading. Or life, for that matter. Keep 'em coming, you people there on the ground!
There have been many posts asking about the best/safest/most family-oriented/hottest nightlife/most gay-friendly/etcetcetc in the CO forums. You don't have kids, so of course best schools is uninteresting to you.

Water rights isn't a topic of conversation in eastern MA because that resource hasn't been divvied up and taken by other states (heavily populated, arid, large ones), as it has in CO. CO is a headwaters state; MA is not. It also rains more in MA--less need to irrigate.
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Old 07-24-2017, 12:17 AM
 
13,290 posts, read 25,455,947 times
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Well, yes, of course. But there are broader issues in eastern Mass. that people don't seem to bring up- it's all relocation and great schools. Affordable housing, public transport, gentrification. But most posts seem to be all relocation, like, as you point out, there are so many posts about relocation/housing/schools, mostly on the Front Range (as are most Mass. posts about eastern Mass./Boston metro).

Right, schools aren't of interest to me, although relocation overall is. And I reiterate that I appreciate the cogent discussions about issues beyond relocation and schools.
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