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  #201  
Old 05-14-2020, 11:53 AM
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Hey hey hey. Letting facts get in the way of an ill informed conversation is exactly what "real Americans" disdain about the coastal elite.
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Last edited by Grey; 05-14-2020 at 11:56 AM.
  #202  
Old 05-15-2020, 04:12 PM
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Yes and no. Middle America is plagued with the same afflictions that plague inner cities and poor suburbs: substance abuse, under employment, poor health and poor access to healthcare, poor education and poor access to good education. They suffer from the same afflictions. The difference seems to be that poor minorities don't blame or try to punish Middle America for their problems. Whereas...
Sure, but do they perceive all those things as problems? I mean, sure substance abuse and underemployment are considered bad, but I'm not sure they really think that they have poor education or poor access to healthcare. I'd be willing to bet that your average rural person doesn't even realize how bad their local high school may be- they have no frame of reference whatsoever. Same with healthcare access- they know there's a hospital in the "big" town 40 miles away, and that Old Doc Smith can see them in their own small town. But they probably have little notion that it's materially different in a larger metro area.

And there's also the notion that they *like* being divorced from the larger (read city-centric) national culture, and instead cleave to the "country" culture.

So I suspect they view underemployment as a result of government policies and regulation, and they view substance abuse as something creeping in from the cities, and don't even consider the rest to be issues.

When you look at it like that, it's really easy to still cling to the idea that a lot of that stuff is the problem of, or caused by the cities, and in particular, the low-income city dwellers.
  #203  
Old 05-15-2020, 05:01 PM
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Sure, but do they perceive all those things as problems? I mean, sure substance abuse and underemployment are considered bad, but I'm not sure they really think that they have poor education or poor access to healthcare. I'd be willing to bet that your average rural person doesn't even realize how bad their local high school may be- they have no frame of reference whatsoever. Same with healthcare access- they know there's a hospital in the "big" town 40 miles away, and that Old Doc Smith can see them in their own small town. But they probably have little notion that it's materially different in a larger metro area.

And there's also the notion that they *like* being divorced from the larger (read city-centric) national culture, and instead cleave to the "country" culture.

So I suspect they view underemployment as a result of government policies and regulation, and they view substance abuse as something creeping in from the cities, and don't even consider the rest to be issues.

When you look at it like that, it's really easy to still cling to the idea that a lot of that stuff is the problem of, or caused by the cities, and in particular, the low-income city dwellers.
So, what can be done to disabuse them of these counterfactual notions?

It seems as though anytime someone tries, they get called a liberal elite or worse. They are told that they do not understand the needs of rural areas, and that we look down on "flyover country" with disdain.

I always find it a bit odd to be told that I'm a coastal liberal that ignores the heartland, as I live in what used to be rural (now suburbia) Ohio.
  #204  
Old 05-15-2020, 05:24 PM
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Some Middle Americans may be proud of Trump's response to the pandemic.

Early on he said that the U.S. would have Zero cases. He stands by that prediction, while admitting it may now take a while to get to zero.
  #205  
Old 05-18-2020, 04:05 AM
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So, what can be done to disabuse them of these counterfactual notions?

It seems as though anytime someone tries, they get called a liberal elite or worse. They are told that they do not understand the needs of rural areas, and that we look down on "flyover country" with disdain.

I always find it a bit odd to be told that I'm a coastal liberal that ignores the heartland, as I live in what used to be rural (now suburbia) Ohio.
Remember, kids: anyone from a blue state saying anything negative about people in a red state is an elitist snob looking down their nose at hard-working rural folk, but people in red states who unleash an unending stream of malicious bullshit against people in blue states are real Americans telling it like it is.
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Old 05-18-2020, 02:13 PM
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So, what can be done to disabuse them of these counterfactual notions?

It seems as though anytime someone tries, they get called a liberal elite or worse. They are told that they do not understand the needs of rural areas, and that we look down on "flyover country" with disdain.

I always find it a bit odd to be told that I'm a coastal liberal that ignores the heartland, as I live in what used to be rural (now suburbia) Ohio.
I think it's more that someone from somewhere else comes in and says (in effect)

"Oh, you poor, benighted hicks. You don't even know how bad you have it. Your schools suck, and you don't even know it. And your healthcare would be better if you had your veterinarians take care of you. Let us people from the coasts and big cities tell you how we think it should be done."

That's why they get pissed- it's someone from somewhere else telling them how they should be and what they should like and prioritize. Naturally they bristle, even if that outsider happens to be right. And when that outsider happens to be politically aligned to the other party, it's even worse.

I'm not sure how you get them to realize that they can have it better, but I'm sure that someone from without telling them that their homegrown local institutions are poor, and telling them that they should be more like the city ones on the coasts doesn't go over well.

Last edited by bump; 05-18-2020 at 02:14 PM.
  #207  
Old 05-18-2020, 02:59 PM
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I think it's more that someone from somewhere else comes in and says (in effect)

"Oh, you poor, benighted hicks. You don't even know how bad you have it. Your schools suck, and you don't even know it. And your healthcare would be better if you had your veterinarians take care of you. Let us people from the coasts and big cities tell you how we think it should be done."

That's why they get pissed- it's someone from somewhere else telling them how they should be and what they should like and prioritize. Naturally they bristle, even if that outsider happens to be right. And when that outsider happens to be politically aligned to the other party, it's even worse.

I'm not sure how you get them to realize that they can have it better, but I'm sure that someone from without telling them that their homegrown local institutions are poor, and telling them that they should be more like the city ones on the coasts doesn't go over well.
If that's all it was, but it isn't. What they fundamentally object to are liberal values and morals when it comes to LGBTQ, minorities, women's rights, multiculturalism, etc. In fact, I doubt they would object very much to better schools and healthcare if they could ensure that those others didn't also get the benefits. (As evidenced in this very thread.) Never mind the fact that most middle-America states are subsidized by the larger economies and tax bases of coastal blue states. Dare to remind them of that and suddenly they shut right up but continue to simmer in resentment. It's like a petulant young kid who thinks he is old enough to do whatever he wants but resents having to obey house rules even though his entire life depends on his parents for every need and comfort they provide.
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  #208  
Old 05-18-2020, 03:22 PM
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I think it's more that someone from somewhere else comes in and says (in effect)

"Oh, you poor, benighted hicks. You don't even know how bad you have it. Your schools suck, and you don't even know it. And your healthcare would be better if you had your veterinarians take care of you. Let us people from the coasts and big cities tell you how we think it should be done."

That's why they get pissed- it's someone from somewhere else telling them how they should be and what they should like and prioritize. Naturally they bristle, even if that outsider happens to be right. And when that outsider happens to be politically aligned to the other party, it's even worse.

I'm not sure how you get them to realize that they can have it better, but I'm sure that someone from without telling them that their homegrown local institutions are poor, and telling them that they should be more like the city ones on the coasts doesn't go over well.
The problem is, is that no matter how it is said, they will hear it as you have quoted. There is nowhere where you could find anything remotely what you quoted, but I've seen many paraphrases of "in effect" that were pretty similar.

"We want to provide you with healthcare" "So in effect, you are telling me that I would be better off if I had my veterinarian take care of me"

Any criticism whatsoever is seen as telling them how they should be. Any negative comment as to the state of their health infrastructure is taken as telling them that their homegrown local institutions are poor.

And at the same time as we have to parse our words and be so very very careful not to offend, almost always in vain, as they *want* to be offended, and the *will* find something to be offended by, they have absolutely no problem heaping insults and vile hatred against us.

I was out at a restaurant with my father years ago. He's a Trump supporter, full disclosure, but this was before Trump was anything more than a reality TV host. When the server came by, they leaned in and put their hand on the table between us. My father exploded, telling the server that he had read all about the "tip-getting" tricks that servers use, and he didn't appreciate them trying to manipulate him. I spent almost 20 years in food service, I know servers, and this server did absolutely nothing wrong, but my dad was looking for something to take offense to, and so he found it.

I feel that the "Middle America*" is the same way. They are looking to be offended, and blame us that they found something to take offense to.


*And I feel weird saying that, as a Middle American myself.
  #209  
Old 05-18-2020, 03:39 PM
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If that's all it was, but it isn't. What they fundamentally object to are liberal values and morals when it comes to LGBTQ, minorities, women's rights, multiculturalism, etc. In fact, I doubt they would object very much to better schools and healthcare if they could ensure that those others didn't also get the benefits. (As evidenced in this very thread.) Never mind the fact that most middle-America states are subsidized by the larger economies and tax bases of coastal blue states. Dare to remind them of that and suddenly they shut right up but continue to simmer in resentment. It's like a petulant young kid who thinks he is old enough to do whatever he wants but resents having to obey house rules even though his entire life depends on his parents for every need and comfort they provide.
This^ too.

The republicans have a good game going. *They* attack a minority, passing bathroom bills or other crap that is specifically made to harm a particular group, then when Democrats defend them, they talk about how the Democrats have their priorities wrong, and that they care more about where someone pees than the economy.

I have to admit, it's a great strategy, one that I do not know how to defeat. Well, in the long run, I do, in providing education, and not just memorizing facts, but learning critical thinking. Education is inoculation against weaponized ignorance, but we certainly have not reached anything like herd immunity yet.

When people are proud of what they don't know, when they are intentional in misunderstanding others, when they insist that they need to be personally catered to and pampered, you just can't win against it.
  #210  
Old 05-18-2020, 03:43 PM
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When people are proud of what they don't know, when they are intentional in misunderstanding others, when they insist that they need to be personally catered to and pampered, you just can't win against it.
I'm stealing this.
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