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Old Today, 01:31 PM
Location: Tucson AZ & Leipzig, Germany
2,527 posts, read 7,849,939 times
Reputation: 3977


We have all seen countless threads with links to articles about the "best places to live" or "worst places to live". How many times have you looked at those lists, and wondered if the author had actually visited any of the places they were rating?

Here's an interesting story about a Washington Post writer who wrote an article about the US Department of Agriculture's Natural Amenities index. His article listed the cities or towns that placed at the top and at the bottom of those rankings, using the USDA data. Then he concluded that Red Lake County, MN was the worst place to live in the USA.

That article did not go over too well with all those nice people in Minnesota. They wrote the WaPo and invited that author to their area for a visit. He ended up liking the area so much, he relocated there and then wrote a book about the whole experience.

For once, we have a story that goes full circle, and actually deals with why some of these city or place ratings lists based on certain data can be skewed or mistaken.

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Old Today, 01:43 PM
Location: Tennessee
24,342 posts, read 18,128,121 times
Reputation: 28592
A lot of the "worst places to live," by the metrics, are Native American reservations, majority black areas along the Mississippi delta, or in Appalachia.

They might not be the worst places for everyone, but the metrics tell something.
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Old Today, 04:36 PM
Location: Chi > DC > Reno > SEA
1,744 posts, read 811,300 times
Reputation: 2173
I've been to Battle Mountain, NV, which was the subject of a Time (I think) article a couple decades ago about the "Worst Town in America".

It's not an exciting, vibrant, or wealthy place by any means, or close to any major cities, but it is on I-80, which makes it less economically depressed than a lot of the more isolated towns in Nevada. And it at least has a mountain backdrop, which I think most people would prefer to a plains or prairie environment.
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