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Tue Nov 7, 2017, 11:32 PM

My travels in white America - a land of anxiety, division and pockets of pain

This summer, Gary Younge took a trip from Maine to Mississippi to find out what has brought the US to this point. From the forgotten poor to desperate addicts, their whiteness is all some of them have left – and that makes fertile ground for the far right


Jeff Baxter’s enduring memory, from childhood, is the glow. Coming down over the hill overlooking the coke plant in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the molten iron would make itself known – both as a vision and an aspiration. “It’s like the sun landed there,” says Baxter, a burly, bearded retiree, who achieved his boyhood dream of becoming a steelworker.

Today, the plant, like the one Baxter worked in for 30 years, stands derelict – a shell that represents a hollowing out not just of the local economy but of culture and hope – as though someone extinguished Baxter’s sun and left the place in darkness. Buildings in the centre of town that were once testament to the industrial wealth produced here stand abandoned. More than 40% of the population now live below the poverty line; 9.1% are unemployed.

Cambria County, where Johnstown sits, was once a swing county. Al Gore won it in 2000; George W Bush took it in 2004; it went to Barack Obama in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012 – each time by fairly narrow margins. Last year, Donald Trump won it in a landslide.

Baxter, who once backed Obama, voted for Trump, the first time he had ever voted Republican. “I liked [Obama’s] message of hope, but he didn’t bring any jobs in … Trump said he was going to make America great. And I figured: ‘That’s what we need. We need somebody like that to change it.’”

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/nov/06/my-travels-in-white-america-a-land-of-anxiety-division-and-pockets-of-pain

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Reply My travels in white America - a land of anxiety, division and pockets of pain (Original post)
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 OP
AlphaCharley Nov 2017 #1
Denzil_DC Nov 2017 #2
hotrod0808 Nov 2017 #3
Paladin Nov 2017 #4
dalton99a Nov 2017 #5

Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 7, 2017, 11:35 PM

1. Didn't bring any jobs in??? He's delusional. we were losing 700k a MONTH when Bush left office

 

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Response to AlphaCharley (Reply #1)

Tue Nov 7, 2017, 11:39 PM

2. It's a (very) long article.

Younge's been writing about US politics for years, and it's probably worth setting aside the time to read the whole thing to get a clear idea of his perspective.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #2)

Wed Nov 8, 2017, 12:05 AM

3. I respect that

But I am sick and fucking tired of hearing from people who voted for Trump. They picked the blowhard who has yet to create multiple paying jobs as a "businessman," meaning he stiffs contactors and loses money on his property.

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Response to hotrod0808 (Reply #3)

Wed Nov 8, 2017, 08:15 AM

4. My sentiments exactly.

I'm not wasting any more time on articles about whiney-assed white people who voted from trump. Life is too short.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Wed Nov 8, 2017, 09:03 AM

5. "What is new is that Trump has emboldened the bigots and channelled their thinking in a fashion

not seen in modern times"

That's the gist of it

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