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Rural Consciousness and Democratic Politics


Rural Consciousness and Democratic Politics

John Buell

The loss of the so-called flyover states was the key—and very surprising—factor in Hillary Clinton's loss of last year's presidential election. Some pundits attributed the outcome to racism among white rural voters and even blamed these voters for supposedly making choices harmful to their own economic self-interest. Common as this analysis is, it may contribute to the pathology it seeks to combat.The very designation of flyover states conceals important divisions within those states.


Stunning that question of state banks as in North Dakota, banking, the federal reserve, the economics of farming /futures and the intricacies therein are not even mentioned. Oh, thats right, thats a universe that has nothing to do with identity. In its absence, the negation treatment is tantamount to saying that there is no fiscal identity to rural regions. The derivatives market sure has been pumping for assimilation (shorthand for doing-away-with) of any integrity of regional economic identities.

  • Break up banks
  • separate community banks from investment banks
  • reinstate Glass Steagle
  • Ban derivatives


"The loss of the...flyover states was the key - and very surprising - factor in Hillary Clinton's loss..."

What surprise?

The whole Country was ready for the Populist message.

Hil made sure the Dems didn't offer it in the Election, and Trump Talked the Talk, lies though they were, enough to get elected


The black farmers and ranchers in my area would be very interested to know that they are all closet racists. They supported Obama in 2008 and Trump in 2016. Maybe there is more to it than the DNC thinks.


Trump didn't just get votes from former those who voted for Obama in "flyover states". Trump won 91% of rural counties nationwide and 85% of rural counties in "blue states".

Too much legislation championed by Democrats and too many ballot initiatives (in states that allow them) pick winners and losers, with the rural counties and their residents ending up being the losers 9 out of 10 times.

One example is Obama's ACA requiring Medicare Advantage Plan providers to establish preferred provider networks in each county the plan is offered in. Establishing such networks is cost effective only in densely populated counties, hence Medicare Advantage Plans disappeared from rural counties and monthly out of pocket Medicare costs increased for rural participants.


There is a big gaping hole in both Buell's and Cramer's take on rural voters.
Nowhere is the mention of how the MIC-neoCon policies created a vast money sucking monster that stole tax monies from Everyone. To the tune of Trillions...
And rural communities disproportionately had their young people sent into the grinder of war(s) because of the lack of economic opportunities. Yes, I do know that the US has a volunteer military, however it is hardly 'volunteer' when one's choices are vastly limited or nil.


Great article and revealing exactly the thoughts that we all need to be more aware of. I want the folks living on the farms and rural settings to also understand what we in the cities "think and feel" and go through, too. It is fair that we all get better acquainted and try to understand each others' needs better. Across the board, it is the American working class bearing the largest burden of taxes and worked hours, and trying to survive, build a future. Let us get to know one another better and most importantly to understand each other more. It makes a huge difference.


The DNC is completely out of touch with the people.


Thank you for this comment! When I read the headline I assumed that the article was indeed about the insane level of war mongering that has become as common from the Democratic Party as it has been from the Republicans. Imagine my surprise to not see a single word about the largest economic drag on the country in the article. Had Clinton never been Secretary of State and used that office to expand US military interference throughout the world she probably would have won almost as easily as Sanders would have.


I grew up in a rural area.... moved to Queens and then Long Island for 17 years... moved back to my place of origin at 42....Rural, is an identity... but, it has morphed over the years. There are more people like me, who went away, went through a "growth" process and now, lean left or actually even almost RADICAL.... (can't say I am Radical, because I still buy consumer products and well, haven't given up my house and electricity etc. ....... yet).... So, I like the reference in the article about how the gas tax, affects those in rural areas.... I have gotten miffed many times on other articles about such a method to reduce fossil fuel use... so, seeing this helped... it's true that we here travel much farther to go to work or run errands... yeah, you try to do every thing in one shot... but sometimes, that's not doable... or just to go visit a relative... etc... Now, do not get me wrong... getting rid of fossil fuels is an absolute goal of mine.... HOW to do it is the question... It is a move that is very very late in the game at this point... but, I'd like to do the right thing... and not be too attached to the outcome... (per Guy McPherson).... So, having said that... wouldn't it be nice if we could bring down the corporate matrix, by NOT buying their sh*t.... if rural people AND URBAN people.... began cottage industry ... making their own sh*t and also goin with out some that they really do not need.... the more you can make at home .... the more one can rely on second hand... the better... I mean, we have SSSOSOO MUCH second hand stuff in this world... why not use it?... .then in the long run... we can live close to where we work, or even work from home.. and voila.. we solve that gasoline problem along with doing the right thing by the planet... for instance... we should have multiple millions of organic farms... small not using tractors etc... and we could all live interdependently... sharing what each of us has... anthropologists say that the best situation for humans to survive was when we were hunter gatherers, living in groups of 50 to 200.... we are long past that... but... moving in that direction could be the right thing to do... we just cannot be attached to the outcome.... cause.. in the long run... we are pretty much doomed.