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Old 06-22-2007, 04:31 PM
 
1,267 posts, read 2,991,501 times
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Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
I am a native Coloradan. I lived in the state for nearly 50 years before a career move sent me to neighboring Wyoming. I lived in both urban and rural Colorado, and I had (and still maintain) professional connections in nearly all 64 counties in Colorado. There is hardly a city or town, biggest to smallest, in the state that I haven't visited. So, I would say I know Colorado about as well as anyone.

It's true, a lot of Coloradans dislike, often vehemently, newcomers. Those Coloradans can generally be divided into two groups: The old line natives who hate what rampant growth has done to the state they grew up in and loved. I would count myself in that group. The others are the people "who just moved in and want be the last people who just moved in."

To understand why the old natives get so bitter about what has happened to the state, one has to understand how wonderful the state was before growth went out of control. Let me put it this way, I grew up around Denver--I tell people today that the Denver I grew up in doesn't exist anymore. Some of the landmarks are still there, but the city is completely different--and not in a positive way. I would think that anyone who grew up in California and saw how it changed could easily relate. That is why I think there is a lot of resentment of Californians. The attitude among many Coloradans is "they screwed up California to the point that they hate it--now they're coming here and screwing this place up the same way!" That belief is bolstered when, as another poster mentioned, the transplants spout off about, "Well, back in [insert place here], we did it this way. Why can't it be that way here?" That usually rates a standard Coloradan response, "Well, if it was so great where you were, why don't you go back?" I would agree that it's often unfair stereotyping of individuals that are very upstanding good people that happen to come from someplace else. I think it is just an expression of frustration about out of control growth, sprawl, and loss of quality of life that those things bring.
is it possible that there was something in the mentality - the collective consciousness - of "old colorado" that allowed for a politics that promotes, intentionally or not, a boom and bust state? and with some of those "booms" come things like displacement of the prior inhabitants (which has happened all over the world to some degree or another), mining rapes of the landscape (and water resources via some of those exceptionally poisonous mines' wastes), or later real estate development rapes of the landscape (again, happens to some degree most everywhere, depending in part on the mentality and politics of a place)? i think of another scale - america relative to the rest of the world - and it's relative mentality, politics, and subsequent resource uses and abuses and wonder how much of a representative microcosm of that places like colorado (and california) have been.
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Old 06-22-2007, 05:45 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,181,256 times
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Colorado's first big boom was the "silver boom" in the late 1870's and 1880's. Most of the state's early communities and infrastructure were built during that period. Being in a less enlightened era, there was also a lot of environmental destruction. What is interesting is that boom was actually artificially fueled by the passage of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act--that law basically set an artificially high price that the U.S. Government would pay for any quantity of silver sold to it.

By the early 1890's, it was apparent that the continued subsidized purchase of silver by the government would bankrupt the federal treasury. In 1893, the Sherman Silver Purchase Act was repealed. The American economy was already in depression, but the repeal of the Sherman Act threw Colorado into a deep depression. Mines closed statewide, and many communities had jobless rates over 50%. Though a few gold discoveries bouyed some areas of the state (notably Criipple Creek), most of the state stayed mired in depression for decades, and much of the state lost population for decades, as well. It took the New Deal and World War II to bring much of the state out of depression.

Most people alive in Colorado today have only seen the state in relatively prosperous times. They have no concept that, for much of the state's history, the opposite was true. They don't want to think that the state could "bust" again. I happen to think that it can, and probably will. And, when it does, though certainly for differing reasons than a century or so ago, the bust could once again last for a very long time. The first Colorado boom was based on a massive government subsidy of a key Colorado industry. The latest boom (in Colorado and across the U.S.) has been fueled by a massive run-up in consumer and government debt, and the massive use of non-renewable (and now depleting) resources. When that excess is no longer affordable, what do you suppose is going to happen?
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Old 06-22-2007, 05:56 PM
 
1,267 posts, read 2,991,501 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Colorado's first big boom was the "silver boom" in the late 1870's and 1880's. Most of the state's early communities and infrastructure were built during that period. Being in a less enlightened era, there was also a lot of environmental destruction. What is interesting is that boom was actually artificially fueled by the passage of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act--that law basically set an artificially high price that the U.S. Government would pay for any quantity of silver sold to it.

By the early 1890's, it was apparent that the continued subsidized purchase of silver by the government would bankrupt the federal treasury. In 1893, the Sherman Silver Purchase Act was repealed. The American economy was already in depression, but the repeal of the Sherman Act threw Colorado into a deep depression. Mines closed statewide, and many communities had jobless rates over 50%. Though a few gold discoveries bouyed some areas of the state (notably Criipple Creek), most of the state stayed mired in depression for decades, and much of the state lost population for decades, as well. It took the New Deal and World War II to bring much of the state out of depression.

Most people alive in Colorado today have only seen the state in relatively prosperous times. They have no concept that, for much of the state's history, the opposite was true. They don't want to think that the state could "bust" again. I happen to think that it can, and probably will. And, when it does, though certainly for differing reasons than a century or so ago, the bust could once again last for a very long time. The first Colorado boom was based on a massive government subsidy of a key Colorado industry. The latest boom (in Colorado and across the U.S.) has been fueled by a massive run-up in consumer and government debt, and the massive use of non-renewable (and now depleting) resources. When that excess is no longer affordable, what do you suppose is going to happen?
maybe interesting to note the "subsidization" of sprawl ("socialized" infrastructure, as i've seen you call it) that continues to feed this late "boom" in the context of you last post here. perhaps we the people should get a little more aware of how this keeps happening, how it could (and probably will, eventually, as you point out) result in another "bust" (which might be a euphemistic way of putting it), and how to try to mitigate some of the SERIOUS repercussions of that kind of thing (considering the global nature of some of our issues these days, and the relative size and interconnectivity of our populations and economies)?
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Old 06-22-2007, 06:29 PM
 
1,267 posts, read 2,991,501 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by formercalifornian View Post
Another thread inspired me to ask the following question:

As a newcomer to Colorado, what can I do to avoid becoming the inspiration for complaints from long-time residents, who sometimes treat me with outright hostility when they realize I'm a recent transplant? Is this just to be expected?

I plan to stay here long-term, and I would like to establish good relationships with my neighbors, but the minute people find out I've lived in California, they seem to shut down.

Any advice?
and to answer your question more directly , i find the same thing in people in denver. there's some sort of seeming blend of the following things i've wondered about:

- a bit of a midwestern understatedness about some things
- people from coasts tend to have a different exposure to humanity, landscapes, oceans, histories etc. than people from the interior of the US
- an exaggerated clique-ishness
- a surface "cool" and laid back, or effort at that appearance at the least
- cities can already involve some more superficial interactions (friends today, won't be seeing you again tomorrow)
- american culture seems to be getting more paris hilton-esque overall, as it is (immediate gratification with the beautiful people, e.g., or as close to it as we can find seems to often be the drive)
- a significant suburbanity along the front range, along with what it can result in and what it can attract and retain
- a bit more of a "keeping up with the joneses" than i've found elsewhere
- a tendancy for people to almost require that you love it like they love it here
- some combination of these that seems to pervade in after a while of living here

i guess you can probably see some common threads in the above and how it might pan out in various sub-populations of this country and state. i wonder how this might pan out in a co springs (and it's more conservative, church going, military tendencies).

oddly, i find the "natives" (i.e., > 1 generation here) more engaging and interested and intersting than people that have moved here from elsewhere (and i'm a transplant myself), often times. maybe something about who it attracts and retains, typically, in conjunction with the above stuff?

maybe if you either adapt to some of this, move, or find other people from where you're from and a bit more like what you're like (there's that clique thing again)?

Last edited by hello-world; 06-22-2007 at 08:00 PM..
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Old 06-22-2007, 07:00 PM
 
1,267 posts, read 2,991,501 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I_LUVNM View Post
LOL, this post is so funny - "At least here in CO they haul ass as well"! True people in Colorado do drive fast. Just they way you said it was so funny. Thanks for the laugh!
people in CO do not drive fast. i've been driving in a group of 85mph-ers to have to nearly slam on the breaks for a bunch of 45mph-ers (in a 75mph zone) all because of...a roller, a gentle hill! a hill that nearly slowed them to crawl, and that they acceleerated to 75 on the other side of! what the! they drive the way they drive here - SUPER slow, fast, everything in the middle - and don't adapt! in southern CA, people CRUISE and it's all good - you'll adapt. in CO, it's Californians, NYers, Wyoming ranchers, Iowans, etc all on the same road and not interested in any synergy. maybe there's something to that in the fitting in?
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