29 March 2009

Maybe North Dakota Is Just Better Than the Rest of Us


All I know about the town of Fargo is what I saw in the Cohen Brothers movie of the same name, which actually mostly took place in Minnesota. But the response to Red River flooding has been truly impressive. Citizens actually working with the National Guard to put up dikes, instead of twiddling their thumbs waiting for FEMA to show up. This "can-do" attitude is refreshing for America at a time when Wall Street is cozying up with DC to extort more taxpayer dollars for their failed enterprises and states that spent themselves into oblivion are begging Washington (see California).

To explain this mentality, the NY Times had an article a few months back about why the recession wasn't hurting North Dakota:

North Dakota’s cheery circumstance — which economic analysts are quick to warn is showing clear signs that it, too, may be in jeopardy — can be explained by an odd collection of factors: a recent surge in oil production that catapulted the state to fifth-largest producer in the nation; a mostly strong year for farmers (agriculture is the state’s biggest business); and a conservative, steady, never-fancy culture that has nurtured fewer sudden booms of wealth like those seen elsewhere (“Our banks don’t do those goofy loans,” Mr. Theel said) and also fewer tumultuous slumps.

12 comments:

Lisa said...

Fargo was great, and I remember that article, too.

"“Our problem is that everybody thinks that it’s a cold, miserable place to live” -- uh-yeah. But God bless them, the salt of the earth Americans.

Anonymous said...

Mostly white...Go figure...

subrookie said...

I remember a similar story not long ago when Iowa was flooding. I worked for a business in Missouri on the Missouri River that was under 13 feet of river water for over a month. We sandbagged for 2 weeks trying to save it, and didn't ask for a dime of gov't money when the water receded.

And, here we still are years later listening to Katrina victims asking for gov't handouts while displaced NO residents are increasing the crime rates in Houston, Dallas, and other cities.

What's happening in Fargo is the can-do and rural town mentality that makes America great. Neighbors helping neighbors, people opening their doors for flooded out friends, and not waiting around for someone else to bail them out.

Oz said...

You're all just a bunch of racists is all.

Oz said...

Joke, by the way.

Nixon said...

Anonymous,

I still believe that stupidity and sloth knows no ethnic boundary. The same people who keep building their Malibu mansions on areas prone to landslides...then go whining to the government to pay for it. I think they're all white.

Lisa said...

Thank you, LT, for the correct perspective. And those well-off whiteys, building on land which is every bit as untenable and fragile, expect the same government help.

lela said...

Subrookie said it all! Salt of the Earth.....

Anonymous said...

Lela wouldn't know salt of the earth if she was standing by the great Salt Lake.

Nixon said...

Uh, I think Lela is from the Dakotas and not sipping on 7&7's at the country club.

subrookie said...

If you've worn hip waders, filled sandbags, made sure the water pumps have gas overnight while you drink Old Milwakee Light from a Coke vending machine with a john boat tied up to the building waiting for the waters to come over the levy...then you can have a negative opinion of these people. Until then, you're just spouting off from your Chicago/NY/LA apt.

There's a reason that if the world ever goes Red Dawn on our ass everyone will flee to this part of the country. Hell I would! Putin would invade places like Fargo, Minot, Bemidji, Billings, and Cheyenne last for a reason.

Lisa said...

subrookie,

Putin invading Minot? Now that's good for a larf!

And since you compare Fargo to N.O. and Katrina: just where would those folks have gotten sandbags and sand? And if Fargo is swamped by the breaking of a levee, how would one hold back the mighty waters of the Mississippi?