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The Continental Divide

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posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 01:57 AM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Watching the election day media coverage was a surreal experience. The election result has had two immediate impacts. The first is all of Hillary Clinton's media surrogates have been discredited and they have not cottoned on to this at all. Secondly around the world from New Zealand to the USA a generation of people known as Millennials never had to face the consequences of their actions or faced even a mild reversal in life. So these people threw a epic wobbly. Had they not thrown a wobbly they wouldn't have lost my respect.




posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 12:31 PM
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a reply to: redempsh

I'm going to take a controversial stance here to most of you - that our view of mistrust has actually been manipulated by the media (here: movies and tv and literature and comics (etc) rather than news) for the purpose of profit.

Many of you claim to mistrust the government - but you rely on the government to fix streets and highways, bridges, dams, set standards for architecture (so tall buildings don't collapse as they do in countries with no oversight), and when you call 911 for an emergency, you expect responders. In big cities you expect professionals (I realize that in small towns you get volunteers and a small staff.)

What, exactly, is "big government"? I bet it's one of those "I can't tell you numbers, but I know it when I see it" - right?

Have you ever thought that this view might be illogical? That you're being taught to be afraid of some undefined entity?

Think of "big government" - how many people is it? What's the difference between "big government" and "middle sized government" (in numbers)? Which positions are unjustified? Do you know what they actually do (not some caricature that you've been told - do you actually know what each of the people in (say) the building permits department is doing?) Do you know what their workload is and why they are doing that work (which regulations they're enforcing and why?)

Since the end of the Cold War, the entertainment industry has struggled to find something to position as the "Great Threat" that moves an exciting plot forward. They tried the "big business" (films like Erin Brockovich) but that didn't seem to pan out. James Bond does well with Evil Shadow Organizations, but the idea that seemed to work out best was "Evil Shadow Organizations and Incredible Government Plots."

This kind of story (fiction) plays well with those who want less regulation in some areas...but may not have studied up on WHY the regulation is there. The "government should be hands off businesses" sounds great until you read up on the big monopolies and their impact (think "Walmart Unchained") on small businesses and local businesses. Forced price wars, driving small businesses out, slave labor wages for employees (because there's no other jobs around... because they've been forced out...) etc.

We do need to have old laws abandoned and new ones added or modified. But the current media storyline is not about people working together to do this... it's about the Glory Of Big Struggles Against Shadow Government Organizations which are taking over the world/state/your town.

The media is powerful because our visual cortex tends to override other areas of the brain. People believe videos without asking (reasonably) "is this CGI?" "Is this story manipulated?"

So I submit that our taste for entertainment drama (and the entertainment industry's interest in profits) is driving a lot of this. As "evidence" I'll point to other countries where the media isn't as engaged with this kind of story -- and where the people as a whole aren't quite as paranoid as Americans are getting.
edit on 22-12-2016 by Byrd because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 12:43 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck



I blame our public education system. I have said for many years that every student should understand basic algebra by the sixth grade and calculus before they graduate. As a professional math tutor, I fully believe that such is not only possible but reasonable if mathematics is taught well by good teachers.


Our public education system has not been like others around the world. From Colonial times, we developed an education system for basic education for our populace (some, not all at times), and our founding leaders saw literate citizens as a good thing for a democracy. Truly, though, our public schools have been given increasingly daunting tasks, especially over recent years.

When my late ex-mil tried to enter a public school in 1925, her mother was told to bring her back when her 6 year old learned to speak English. Now we educate all. When I went to school in the 1950-60s, the "retarded" children in my neighborhood did not attend any school. Now we educate all.

In truth, Koch ideology (which now is the ideology of the New Republican Party) wants this....


We advocate the complete separation of education and State. Government schools lead to the indoctrination of children and interfere with the free choice of individuals. Government ownership, operation, regulation, and subsidy of schools and colleges should be ended.

We condemn compulsory education laws … and we call for the immediate repeal of such laws.”


In re to math education.... it has never been that great here (yet we put a man on the moon). Again, when I went to school, coaches were too often the math teacher of choice for Algebra, with little to no actual teaching. What has happened to add to the current fiasco is the intervention of testing corporations that demands teaching to the test.

I really applaud your work to help students understand math. When a public school teacher is unable to give adequate attention to one of 52 students in a math class, then look how valuable individual tutoring can be. What is so disgusting is that the first thing advocates of private charter schools demand is small class sizes. And sometimes provide their students a new building to boot!

Also, what does one do for students who fall to the left of the bell-curve? To what degree should they understand algebra? As an especially egregious ex, a special education (severely handicapped) teacher friend was telling me about three years ago how she had to teach the Periodic Table of the Elements to her students, and the next year forced to use a $30,000 math program to teach basic algebra and geometry to students who were, at most, the cognitive level of a 6 year old as a 14 year old!!

One of the things that has separated American public education from the rest of the world was the fact that Americans could always drop back in to education at any level, whereas most other systems had no path for dropping back in, once you went through the system, that was it. There was no "going back". We have valued adult education and older students returning to college, as well as multiple degrees.



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 12:50 PM
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originally posted by: Byrd
a reply to: redempsh

I'm going to take a controversial stance here to most of you - that our view of mistrust has actually been manipulated by the media (here: movies and tv and literature and comics (etc) rather than news) for the purpose of profit.

Many of you claim to mistrust the government - but you rely on the government to fix streets and highways, bridges, dams, set standards for architecture (so tall buildings don't collapse as they do in countries with no oversight), and when you call 911 for an emergency, you expect responders. In big cities you expect professionals (I realize that in small towns you get volunteers and a small staff.)

What, exactly, is "big government"? I bet it's one of those "I can't tell you numbers, but I know it when I see it" - right?

Have you ever thought that this view might be illogical? That you're being taught to be afraid of some undefined entity?



My experiences of "Big Government" have been influenced by watching the EPA seize farmland, declaring it a "wetland", in an arid part of the southwest, and then commandeer the landowners equipment and water well to "fill it with water" to make a habitat for migrating Canada geese. Additionally, the farmer was legally constrained from selling the land-EVER-in an attempt to avoid the expense of feeding hundreds of thousands of Canadas. And his children will inherit the expense after he dies. So paying for the EPA plan is now a congenital defect.

I watched the area around the new cowboys stadium, an area of poor homes, seized by the city government by "eminent domain," because the poor people were leveling their homes to operate the land as small "for profit" parking lots. Jerry Jones was awarded the land by the city of Arlington. Jones has converted the land into a vast "for profit" parking lot.

I've watch the Federal Government refuse to let the Boy Scouts of America hold their national Jamboree on a plot of land that they (BSA) donated to the department of defense, with the proviso that they be allowed to hold their jamboree there every 4 years. As soon as the DOD took possession of the land, they ruled that the BSA could not use the land, because they were an inherently religious organization (BSA scouts profess a reverence for the religion of one's choice).

But its the media's fault?

EDIT TO ADD:

but you wrote:




Many of you claim to mistrust the government - but you rely on the government to fix streets and highways, bridges, dams, set standards for architecture (so tall buildings don't collapse as they do in countries with no oversight), and when you call 911 for an emergency, you expect responders. In big cities you expect professionals (I realize that in small towns you get volunteers and a small staff.)


So, because I drive on streets, and obey the local building codes, I have not right to critique the government???

What sort of serf am I, that I am not supposed to question M'lord's motives....


edit on 22/12/2016 by redempsh because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 01:06 PM
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a reply to: redempsh

I, like you, have had way too many encounters with our governments, State, Local and Federal to not recognize a beast when I see it.

The intimacy has cost me dearly all round, and always to the benefit of another, or others.

I do not need the media to tell me what a lot of corrupt, big business minions, our governments are. All I have to do is look at my bank account.



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 01:22 PM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck
a reply to: American-philosopher

I'm saying we have two diametrically opposed, inherently unsustainable philosophies who are at odds but also operating symbiotically. The discord we see in the election is all about these philosophies fighting tooth and nail for validation, and the present state of politics is due to both the unsustainability and collusion.

I am actually starting to believe the next generation of youth will be more classical conservative, rejecting the new-age ideals. That would be another huge clash of ideals.

TheRedneck
yep, and the absolute is a vain materialistic proud war-like white Man. That's your Mona Lisa people.



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 01:34 PM
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a reply to: Aazadan

Elan Musk often describes "First Principles" thinking.

The difference between knowing a ton of "stuff" and the process by which to solve novel problems...aka New, not done before stuff...Those are two very different skill-sets. One is fit for being a tool inside a corporation and making X happen 20 times a day...another is inventing new stuff, pushing forward....and Phd does not make anyone less of a tool if they can't start from the basics and THINK about a problem.


edit on 22-12-2016 by Indigo5 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 03:17 PM
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a reply to: Indigo5



An image is worth a thousand words.



So all I can say is...DIVERSITY is good..DIVERSITY is strength...Liberals need to stop being so damn arrogant and easily dislikable...and Rural America needs to stop blaming Liberals for their ills.


I have a good friend, very liberal, kindhearted, but who often uses the term "the unwashed masses".

I recently read JD Vance's book and was struck by my ignorance of a part of American history and culture I was familiar with on a superficial level via popular culture, but yet really did not know.


The tragedy of Trump’s candidacy is that, embedded in his furious exhortations against Muslims and Mexicans and trade deals gone awry is a message that America’s white poor don’t need: that everything wrong in your life is someone else’s fault. No one doubts that globalisation and automation have disproportionately had an impact on the white working class and no responsible politics should fail to appreciate and address that fact. Yet our neighbourhoods and our communities create certain pressures and instil certain values that make it harder for our children to lead happy lives.

source



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 04:54 PM
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originally posted by: redempsh
My experiences of "Big Government" have been influenced by watching the EPA seize farmland, declaring it a "wetland", in an arid part of the southwest, and then commandeer the landowners equipment and water well to "fill it with water" to make a habitat for migrating Canada geese. Additionally, the farmer was legally constrained from selling the land-EVER-in an attempt to avoid the expense of feeding hundreds of thousands of Canadas. And his children will inherit the expense after he dies. So paying for the EPA plan is now a congenital defect.

That's Federal government...


I watched the area around the new cowboys stadium, an area of poor homes, seized by the city government by "eminent domain," because the poor people were leveling their homes to operate the land as small "for profit" parking lots. Jerry Jones was awarded the land by the city of Arlington. Jones has converted the land into a vast "for profit" parking lot.

And that, as you said, was local government and also (at least to some degree, because I remember it) as the result of a public referendum (www.texasmonthly.com...).


I've watch the Federal Government refuse to let the Boy Scouts of America hold their national Jamboree on a plot of land that they (BSA) donated to the department of defense, with the proviso that they be allowed to hold their jamboree there every 4 years. As soon as the DOD took possession of the land, they ruled that the BSA could not use the land, because they were an inherently religious organization (BSA scouts profess a reverence for the religion of one's choice).


Was it this case? I ask, because there's a number of articles on the Army Times about things the Army is/was doing with/for the Boy Scouts at the Jamboree in 2010 and 2014. www.army.mil...

The decision was subsequently reversed by the US Court of Appeals on April 4, 2007 in Winkler vs Gates (renamed due to a new Secretary of Defense), which ruled that the plaintiffs lacked legal standing as taxpayers to bring the suit in the first place. Therefore, the 2010 Jamboree at Fort A.P. Hill and future support by DOD of Jamborees will continue as before
Wikipedia link


That was actually a lawsuit (not big government) that caused a decision that was reversed by another lawsuit. It's not a unilateral "big government marches in and whimsically steals stuff."

And this was my point -- that narrative sources set up a "big nasty government" scenario and people often buy into it and then label any action by ANY government (including things that the people of the area voted to do) as Evil Government Interference when actually it was Evil Fellow Citizen Interference.

And without understanding which government (state, local, Federal, county) is being evil, you can't fix it.

I feel it's wrong to blanket-label the whole shebang. I think there's people who are selfish and greedy and are doing illegal and semilegal things who need to be stopped and punished. But I think multiple levels of government do a lot of things right.

And yeah, I don't like Jerry Jones. He doesn't hold a candle to Tom Landry.

edit on 22-12-2016 by Byrd because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 05:01 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

I'm glad Byrd and you brought up movies.



Our tastes in entertainment have definitely changed; there's no denying that. I would say part of that change is due to technology. It is fairly simple now to use CGI to make an actor's head realistically explode, whereas not so long ago it would have been impossible without killing the actor. And thinking about it, you may have a good point that I had not considered: is it the increased violence in electronic entertainment that has helped lead us to this point? Does art imitate life, or does life imitate art?


My favorite movie off all time... 2001: A Space odyssey
Really, the special effects (from a studio in England) led the way to future movies, and IMO have rarely been duplicated in feel and quality. Astronauts said at the time that it was how a trip in space really was like. For me, the scene of the "Dawn of Man" was mindblowing; lol I found out later that they DID use human actors and animal actors in the same scene.

I felt that the "Dawn of Man" scene offered a theory about what makes humans "human". And it is not a pretty sight. The point at which one ape handled a bone in a different way and then had it "dawn" on him to use the bone to overcome another group of apes was this dawn of humans. An ape that could kill his fellow apes became what would evolve to become man. After a kill, the bone is sent victoriously flying upwards into the air. The instantaneous change to a scene in space millions of years in the future reminds us that just because we have evolved technologically does not necessarily mean we have evolved to that degree emotionally.



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 05:31 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck



Back to my experiences in academia, once I leave campus, I see hate and spite at every turn directed toward others, usually over things I just enjoyed exchanging information about. There is something in this country that causes this. I just don't know what.


I think one of the seeds of division that was planted decades ago took division to an existential level. By the late 1970s, the public was beginning to be divided religiously into being either "saved" or "not saved", whether one attended church or not. And even if one attended church, it had to be the "correct" church. IOW (and this was a bigger deal back then than it is today) one's ultimate destiny, where one ends up at death, was at stake.

In 1980, this existential question was used politically to divide people. If you were "saved" or wanted to be "saved", you were going to vote for the conservative candidate, Ronald Reagan, because the religion that would "save you" was supported by conservatives only. Once one was in the conservative camp to be "saved" existentially, then the next step was to follow what religious/political leaders said would keep you "saved" with "correct" Christian values.

Naturally, the "godless" liberals not only were "unsaved" but were always going to be beyond "saving". No liberal would "go to Heaven". ..... and it's my opinion that this emphasis on religion has probably led to more atheists lol



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 10:21 PM
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a reply to: Byrd

There has always been a concern about "big government," all the way from when the Declaration of Independence was written. Back then it was the British Crown; today it is the Federal government.

Concern over something greater than oneself is common in the human species. Probably a throwback from the days when we competed with other predators, some larger than us, to survive. And in truth, the old adage, "power corrupts," does indeed apply. I firmly believe every national politician and pundit is corrupt to some extent.

But there is also truth in your perspective. Government's every action is not intended to be to the detriment of the populace. People, I believe, do tend to be overly suspicious of every action taken. I just see this as more experience-based than media-inspired. Movies are fantasy, and I think (hope?) people in general know the difference.

I remember watching the first Star Wars movie back when it was introduced. I was in the cockpit of the Millenia Falcon with Han Solo and Chewbacca, dodging asteroids and out-flying TIE fighters... until it was over and I walked out. I knew there was really no Millenia Falcon, no "Force," no way to make an actual light saber (although I am still thinking on it, lol); it was just entertainment.

On the other hand, experience... or should I say perspective?... is often based on things poorly understood. Most people don't realize that labor is a commodity, for example. To someone working in a dead-end, minimum wage job, it is suspicious to observe a well-dressed CEO doing appearance work while raking in relatively insane amounts of pay. But the reality is that few are capable of operating a large company successfully, just as few are capable of running a medical practice, performing as an engineer or scientist, or successfully playing professional sports. The supply of these types of people are limited, and thus the price for them rises, while lower-end workers are plentiful (too plentiful in this economy) and their labor becomes less valuable because of that.

So the perception becomes that the 'suit' must be evil; how else could he swing such a cushy job? And that then extends to government, because government employees, specifically elected officials, make all that money for doing nothing important.

And we return yet again to education. Much of this dynamic could be removed if everyone had just one or two general economics or business classes.

TheRedneck



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 10:43 PM
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a reply to: desert

The South has always held a position in public opinion of being religious to the point of intolerance. And some of that is deserved, admittedly. But the majority is based on a misunderstanding of the culture. The population of the South has always been heavily religious, primarily Protestant. Over time, the local community church has evolved to serve dual functions: one religious, the other social.

An invitation to church is actually an invitation to be a social part of the community, and is seen as a major compliment. A response of "No! I don't want anything do with your God!" (a typical responce by many from other areas) is like saying you don't like them and don't want anything to do with them. On the other hand, simply saying, "Thank you, but I'm not much of a church-goer" is considered a polite way to establish that you have a different religious preference. So the result has been that outsiders tend to offend the people here via cultural ignorance, are shunned for their disrespectful and hateful attitude, and then eventually tell other outsiders how intolerant we are.

The same with being 'saved.' To people here the desire to see someone saved is a huge compliment. It means they care about them. I can see, however, how such can be construed by others as intrusive and objectionable. And I absolutely agree that much of the hatred toward churches comes from people who had religious dogma forced upon them. That really needs to stop; some people simply carry things too far.

That description applies primarily to the older generations and rural areas today, much more than it used to. But it does still exist somewhat. I really wish people would study a little about an area's culture before moving into it. And t hat applies to all cultures, not just the South... plenty of Southern folk have returned from Yankee-land spouting how rude and inconsiderate Yankees are. It's probably just another culture clash.

TheRedneck



posted on Dec, 22 2016 @ 11:22 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Beautifully said! Excellent points!

(as a (now) Southerner, I know these attitudes well.)



posted on Dec, 23 2016 @ 01:17 AM
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a reply to: Byrd

as far as one's view of Government goes, I think it strongly correlates with social class. Lower classes tend to have a more negative view of government; partly because they lack the (legal and financial) resources to fend off the government's coercive actions, and because many government projects benefit the upper classes more.

The Democrat candidates talked about the student loan crisis and making college free. Poor people cannot afford to drop out the work-force for 4 years. So free college benefits the middle and upper classes more. And that's just using education as an example. You can think of others in business, healthcare, etc.

Upper classes and elites are sold on the idea that many government programs benefit the whole of society. Lower classes see almost all programs get preferentially applied. Likewise, most of the coercion is aimed at the lower classes; from acts of police brutality to eminent domain and adverse possession. Even speeding tickets---a $250 ticket is enough to wreck some families' budget for months. Wealthy people pay the fine online without even bothering to contest it.



posted on Dec, 23 2016 @ 12:57 PM
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originally posted by: redempsh
a reply to: Byrd

as far as one's view of Government goes, I think it strongly correlates with social class. Lower classes tend to have a more negative view of government; partly because they lack the (legal and financial) resources to fend off the government's coercive actions, and because many government projects benefit the upper classes more.


In my experience, it correlates more to political alignment. I wouldn't call anyone here on ATS "lower class" or "less educated." If we ranked ATS members according to education and income, I'd rank in the upper group... but I started out as an adult in the lower group (lowest income group, actually) and my views have always been liberal.

I have activist (liberal) friends who are and always were fairly poor and little education beyond a few years of college.

Age probably has something to do with it. I've noticed some of the members who tend to post only one-line ... snarks .. rather than engaging in real dialogue (and who also mistrust media/government) tend to use expressions and shorthand that I associate with those under age 25.


The Democrat candidates talked about the student loan crisis and making college free. Poor people cannot afford to drop out the work-force for 4 years. So free college benefits the middle and upper classes more.


Uhm... the "drop out for four years" is only possible if you're being supported by a family. Most of the adults I know who want college to improve the range of employment opportunities are working full-time and going to school on the side. It would greatly benefit them. I had to drop out for a year on my most recent degree so I could get enough money to pay for my last semesters.


And that's just using education as an example. You can think of others in business, healthcare, etc.

Having been on the really poor end, I can say I got more benefit from those programs (Planned Parenthood gave me birth control pills that we couldn't afford (and medical exams) and pregnancy information and support throughout my pregnancy.)


Likewise, most of the coercion is aimed at the lower classes; from acts of police brutality to eminent domain and adverse possession. Even speeding tickets---a $250 ticket is enough to wreck some families' budget for months. Wealthy people pay the fine online without even bothering to contest it.


...or get a lawyer... Yeah, that's one of the more disgusting parts of our justice system (which is why I'm part of an activist group advocating for reforms on a statewide level.)

I think, though, that the coercion you talk about is more racially oriented (which can be highly correlated with poverty) than class oriented. My reasoning here is based on friends' experiences and my observations of what happens to people I know (or encounter) in public - and reading news stories and public opinion polls and research papers (done for an Anthropology class on race.)



posted on Dec, 23 2016 @ 01:01 PM
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originally posted by: desert
a reply to: TheRedneck
I think one of the seeds of division that was planted decades ago took division to an existential level. By the late 1970s, the public was beginning to be divided religiously into being either "saved" or "not saved", whether one attended church or not. And even if one attended church, it had to be the "correct" church. IOW (and this was a bigger deal back then than it is today) one's ultimate destiny, where one ends up at death, was at stake.
...

Naturally, the "godless" liberals not only were "unsaved" but were always going to be beyond "saving". No liberal would "go to Heaven".


I don't entirely disagree with this, and you are right that a lot of times the talk has been framed to us with that kind of subtext. At one time this really wasn't true - nobody really demonized conservatives or liberals like that earlier last century.

Interesting point.



posted on Dec, 23 2016 @ 01:34 PM
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We condemn compulsory education laws … and we call for the immediate repeal of such laws.”


This kind of proves what I've been saying for years. Republicans want a lot of uneducated people because they're easier to manipulate. That's why they want teenage pregnancy (in spite of their rhetoric) because then you get the mother and the child mostly likely poor, ignorant and pissed off. Then you can't get people like Trump elected.

But overall, I would say this is a cycle that happens to every society. Look at Bosnia. Our country is developing into almost a mirror image of that society.

No matter how great a society starts out, eventually you get too many low quality people because it takes a lot of work, dedication, education, social structure and money to produce quality people while it's very easy to make losers.



posted on Dec, 23 2016 @ 02:47 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

Thank you for the insight! Just goes to show how multicultural America has always been and still is.


Did you write in a post somewhere that you had been a trucker? Did you get some of your wisdom from having been able to be in other parts of the US?

It's been said that "travel is broadening". I live in an agricultural part of CA, where some families would follow the crops for work. I always felt that the children in the family were given a great opportunity to see other parts of America. There were some kids born in my county who never had been out of the county! That's not so much nowadays, as more Americans are mobile, but there still are people who travel more than 150 miles distance maybe three times in their life.



posted on Dec, 23 2016 @ 03:23 PM
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a reply to: Byrd



At one time this really wasn't true - nobody really demonized conservatives or liberals like that earlier last century.


True. And liberals and conservatives fought wars together, went to church together, worked together, had family get togethers, all without referring to politics. There is something else conservatives and liberals did together, attended union meetings together.

I think the decrease in union membership affected America in two important ways. Unions were no longer a neutral area where cons and libs could coexist, interacting with disregard for politics. Unions, as a widespread example of basic democracy (a voice, a vote), provided an introduction to and practice with the larger institution of democracy by which we govern ourselves; with their decline, citizens no longer had the general opportunity to practice a voice and vote, outside of govt elections.



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