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View Diary: Brad Carson speaks - and pens a brilliant TNR article (348 comments)

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  •  Honestly (4.00)
    it is the same thing that drives what is happening in the Middle East.

    One needs to understand how global changes is fundamentally rearranging people's relationships to place and space, and probably destroying the nation-state. The same thing is happening throughout the world. It just happens to manifest itself differently in different places. People in states like Oklahoma - and frankly in places all across the country - feel threatened, and W tells them what they need to hear. And conversely, they feel that he understands what they experience.

    The United States has a conservative political culture defending a liberal heritage. The modern Republican Party's problem is that it is neither.

    by Ben P on Thu Nov 11, 2004 at 11:30:15 PM PST

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    •  Threats (4.00)
      I wonder if, though, there may not be smart ways for us to understand this feeling and then try to work with it to get our message across?  I don't mean scaring people, I mean.. sympathizing with them and considering how, for instance, our economic message and policy goals and etc., our means of creating more good-paying jobs with benefits as well as decent health coverage actually allows a community to grow and still maintain traditional ways of life.  

      Basically, I feel like the job you do might change as the times change, you might need to alter educational programs offered and retrain people, or look to new technologies.  All those changes, we can promote and ask people to accept.  But the end goal is, in a way, about respecting and maintaining the most important thing: the community itself.  After all, why are many small towns and mid-sized cities across this country slowly dying out?  Why are many others stricken with poverty and drug problems?  

      It's because young people can't find any opportunities in many parts of the country, and so they leave - or if they stay, there's often nothing but low-wage service jobs without benefits, and you can't raise a family on that.  I would be happy - thrilled - for folks in these towns and cities to be able to maintain their own traditions and culture for many more generations, and I think we have to at least be clear that we respect them.  But we may, in fact, need progressive policies to make this happen - George W Bush certainly doesn't have any answers.

      I mean, if I were a folksy type like Edwards that's how I'd talk about it - remembering a time when grandparents lived down the street from their grandkids and the grandkids grew up and graduated from school and got married and raised their own kids right there in the same town.  And maybe some moved away because they wanted adventure, and your community was always sending out the welcome wagon for new families moving into town.  But it shouldn't be the case that the kids are leaving town because they have to, or that the ones who stay have trouble finding good jobs, or that your old neighborhood is no longer a safe place to raise kids in.

      We must cultivate our garden.

      by daria g on Fri Nov 12, 2004 at 01:21:16 AM PST

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