Why no hate for the Midwest?

midwest nice

From Charlie Berens’ Manitowoc Minute

You’ll have a buncha guys like dat in just about every Wisconsin town and village.

Good point. But the South has a tradition of "politician-as-entertainer’; literally, in the case of radio-star-turned-governor W. Lee O’Daniels of Texas. Politicians were expected to put on a show, and successful ones like Huey Long, Theodore Bilbo, “Pitchfork Ben” Tillman, and “Cotton Tom” Watson were accomplished ranconteurs that knew how to work a crowd. Huey Long famously led the cheers on the sideline at LSU football games. That tradition goes back to the 18th century - there are folktales about Patrick Henry’s shenanigans in the courtroom.

I suspect that’s true of any successful politician, but are there any famously flamboyant politicians from the Midwest? Not a rhetorical question - I just can’t think of any other than Richard J. Daley and William Jennings Bryan.

Still using that 12" paintbrush, I see.

Stephen A. Douglas (Illinois) comes to mind. As does Jesse Ventura (Minnesota), though to be fair, he entered politics after a career as a professional wrestler and actor.

I guess that’s what I think of when I think of the “Midwest”. Basically “nothing”. Stereotypical “boring middle-class White people”. Like an entire region of people obsessively trying to appear “normal”, much in the way a serial killer might.


My GF is from New York City. While she lives in the Midwest now she has no shortage of means things to say about it and her general dislike of it. She doesn’t carry on about it but her disdain pops up here and there.

Saw this shirt at Summerfest in Milwaukee:

Why the hate for the Midwest? Different point of view bothers yous guys? How boring would that be if everyone thought the same?

That, in my experience, is typical of people from NYC. I would guess 85% of our leisure guests from NYC are constantly telling us “X is better in NYC/that’s not how we do it in NYC”. As I understand it mountains, the desert and hummingbirds are all better in NYC. Up in Wausau (population roughly 40,000) I once had a guest have a meltdown that there was not take out Chinese available at 3 AM. I finally said " ma’am, we’re a town of 40,000. We think we’re lucky that we have a 24 hour grocery store." She slammed the phone down.

Sure, that’s what we do when we compare large swaths of territory with tens of millions of people. “By any measure” is hyperbolic, I’m sure there’s some redeeming quality of the south somewhere, but it does annoy me when people start referring to the midwest as the regressive asshole of the country as though it were more typical of it than the south. Pretty much everything that’s bad about America is worst in the south.

Thank God for Mississippi

" Thank God for Mississippi " is a common adage in the United States, particularly in the South, that is generally used when discussing rankings of U.S. states.[1] Since the U.S. state of Mississippi commonly (or stereotypically) ranks at or near the bottom of such rankings, residents of other states ranking near the bottom may proclaim, “Thank God for Mississippi,” since the presence of that state in 50th place spares them the shame of being ranked last.[2] SOURCE

Well, the OP seemed to be asking why did they detect NO overt hate for the Midwest when in their opinion they are as bad as the South. Plus their premise for hateability seemed to be based on political inclinations. But then they stopped at just that and I do note they don’t seem to have come back around to ask follow-up questions or critique the answers.

So people apparently feel like answering, “hey, that apparent presumption that the Midwest gets a free pass is wrong, there’s plenty of people who’ll talk shit about the Midwest and reasons why they would.”

I suppose part of the thing is that unlike the various negative stereotypes that are often bandied about regarding other regions, the usual put down of the generalized greater midwest is not an accusation of some historic evil atrocity or of some intrinsic character vice, but more along the lines of “its character is as flat and boring as its geography”. Flyover country. I can imagine that some people from the Deep South, or NYC or Southern Cali when they see some reference to them as a cohort of reprehensible asses, may get a bit of a smug feeling of perverse pride in “heh, they may think I’m an asshole but they’re the ones letting me live rent free in their heads”.

I’ve lived in the Midwest, southwest, and south,I’ve found the Midwest is more friendly and no judgement, yeah there are some pockets of weirdos. Wisconsin is all over the place with politics though.

I think this quote from Casablanca may sum up the attitude we West Coast denizens have towards the Midwest.

Ugarte: “You despise me, don’t you?”

Rick Blaine: “If I gave you any thought, I probably would.”

O for sure. We’ve got America’s first lesbian senator, Tammy Baldwin. We’ve got a Trump won/covid doubter/clown/family values senator, Ron Johnson.

Well, if we had less “different”, like racist, misogynistic, homophobic toxic christians different, and more “I like arugula” different, that would be OK.

You can stop right there. New Yorkers think anything west of the Hudson is crap, and everything anyone could ever want can be found in Manhattan, so forgive me for not taking her opinion for all that much valve. Hatred of the South takes a back seat to NY arrogance towards, well, everyone. If we can bring out the old broad brush once more.

Scott Walker was unusually bad.

Back in 1988 some reporter was talking to a political analyst or something. This is roughly the conversation:
Reporter: And what about Wisconsin? Who do you think they’ll vote for?
Analyst, rolling his eyes: It’s a myth that Wisconsin does its own thing. They’ll go with the majority, just like always.

Yeah no. We went Dukakis.

Very true, but not particularly colorful. I did love how he got completely ignored nationally when he was a candidate for the presidency. His being defeated for a third term for governorship is a good example of the unpredictability of Wisconsin voters, though.

Broad brush anyone??

Here’s a map of the more accurate divisions of North American from that book, since the term Midwest isn’t very useful.: