Poverty: Why rural folks vote GOP and do other stupid stuff…

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Rural poverty- Pictured is a dangerous attempt to load a bulldozer on a trailer pulled by a too small tractor. Every piece of equipment in the picture is at least 30 years old, the bulldozer is obsolete and bought at an estate auction for $7500 and the same buyer bought the trailer for around $600. The bulldozer is twice the weight of the tractor and the trailer hasn’t been licensed this millennium, and the tractor has no provision to activate the trailer brakes even if they worked. The bed tilt latch on the trailer was rusted up so they tried to load the bulldozer with ramps, which resulted in the predicament pictured- fortunately they were on the flat as not a single braked wheel made contact with the ground! After this they made another attempt to tilt the trailer bed and got the bulldozer loaded, but they didn’t make it even a hundred yards before giving up as besides flat tires the trailer’s bearings were rusted frozen!

Rural folks don’t buy junk like this and take these risks because they’re stupid, they do it because they are desperate. Desperate people do desperate and risky things, like voting for GOP candidates who will oppose their interests on mere promises like no tax increases and social conservatism. When you’re trying to get by on social security and keep a car running for the 15 mile round trip to the overpriced grocery store, the old days when the rural economy seemed to work are a time you want to go back to, and you reject anything that smacks of urbanism, investing in the future, and even science when it disagrees with you. Understanding the desperation and strange logic of rural poverty is one of the keys to winning elections in rural areas.

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