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Texas -- a failed state


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2 minutes ago, Brisketexan said:

I think that it’s now safe to say that we Texans now live in a failed state.  30 years of GOP rule, setting our own standard, living the “Texas Dream,” which they’ve bragged about relentlessly…and let’s see where we are:

A majority of the state in complete failure, unable to deliver the most BASIC of services (things that are called “utilities,” not “luxuries,” for a reason).  No power.  No water.  No means of clearing roads (that one, I can’t fault the state so much….but it wouldn’t be as big a crisis if people weren’t stuck in their homes with no power and water).  So citizens are stuck in their homes, some of them dying there. 

Water resource planning?  After pretending for decades that a drought would never happen again, and not doing ANYTHING to develop resources in the state water plan (a document actually developed using science and mathematical projections), we had several locations, including actual cities, down to a few days of water supply.  We’ve finally gotten on our horse a bit, but it may be too late if the next drought comes anytime soon.  

State rank in key categories:

Education – 34

Health Care - 37

Infrastructure - 33

Opportunity - 39

Environment - 44

Infrastructure - 33 

In overall quality of life ranking by US News, we are now #38, down from #36 just two years ago.  At that rate, we’ll be in the bottom 3 within ten years.

We are SUPER independent, and FUCK the feds….but we have requested federal disaster assistance more than any other state in the past decade or so.

But hey, our economy is ranked #15!

That’s right, we have a “roaring economy” and the “Texas Miracle!”  But we can’t deliver the basics for our citizens.  The economy is VERY efficient at funneling bazillions to the very few…..with little of it “trickling down” to most Texans.  Yeah, the people on this board generally do fine, but face the facts – we’re the top 10% or so.  We are educated, older, and fortunate.

Our federal system allows for state-by-state experiments.  Texas is the poster child for near anarcho-capitalism and zero regulation or oversight.  We have tested that approach, for over a generation now (30 years of Republican rule).  That approach is a failure.  The evidence is undeniable, and overwhelming.  It doesn’t matter how many River Oaks millionaires you produce if the rest of your people are dying in their homes.  Shit, some of those River Oaks millionaires might be freezing to death today, too.

The kids of a middle class family can hardly afford to go to a good state school.  Their prospects for employment are mediocre.  Their prospects of suffering crippling medical debt at some point are significant.  Their chances of not having basic utilities needed for life safety at some point – all but certain.  Their chances of becoming ill or dying from a pollution-caused illness are material.

What’s the result?  Our leaders have sold Texas as a paradise – move here!  Bring your business here!  And some businesses have done so, adding opportunity…..but providing little to no tax support for the infrastructure we all depend on.  To the contrary, over the past few years, I know more and more people – educated people, people who can do their jobs elsewhere, who are looking to bail on this state.  It’s people with young kids, who want them to grow up in a better place.  It’s people in their working years, who simply want a better path.  It’s retirees, who want a safe and secure place to live.

We have consumed our seed stock.  We have burned through our reserves.  We are now consuming ourselves.  The ability to pitch Texas as the land of opportunity is done.  Seeing what we have become, the tentative thought/plan my wife and I had of wrapping up our careers here and then getting the hell out of Dodge is becoming much more concrete.  My children are already unlikely to make their future in this state.  Now we are, too.

But the response from the Republican leadership and their sycophants – “how are you gonna pay for it?  Taxes?  That’s socialism!  You want that stuff, you have to pay for it!”

Fuck yes I do, and I’m okay with that.  I want groceries…so I have to pay HEB.  I want a car…so I have to pay Ford.  I want clothes…..so I have to pay Dillards.  I want my population educated….so I have to pay the school district.  I want electricity, with enough capacity to keep us running when we need it…..so I have to pay my bill, maybe with a capacity surcharge.  I want water to come out of the taps….so I have to pay for development of resources and maintenance of infrastructure.  I want roads….so I pay taxes to build and maintain them.  YES, I have to pay for all of those things, and “nothing is free” – no fucking shit.  So, let’s pay for it.  We have the #15 economy….we HAVE the funds in this state.  An economy with the flow of funds that ours has can produce and maintain all of those results.  But we have chosen a different path; funnel all the dollars to the top, and spend next to nothing for the public good.  We have privatized profit….we have socialized the costs.  And we are dying because of it.

My fellow Texans are dying in their homes….and there’s nothing I can do about it today.  And I am enraged.

I love Texas.  I am 6th generation here.  My ancestors have Texas historical markers on their graves.  We helped make this state, and this state helped make us.  It educated us (back when college was affordable).  But it’s time to face the fact – this state is a failure, and on its current path, with its current leadership and philosophy, it will only get worse.  This state has a terrible future, unless we dramatically change our path.   Chances of that happening?  0.0% -- because we’ll continue to vote for the guys who make our leadership priorities bathroom bills, and transgender sports, and requiring the national anthem be played at certain events.  Any bill that has been proposed to improve emergency preparedness of gov’t entities has been crushed by the Republicans controlling the lege….but we will definitely stick with those guys.  No taxes.  No government functionality.

What we are seeing happening right now is our system working EXACTLY AS IT WAS DESIGNED AND INTENDED TO WORK.  And we will, I guarantee it, collectively decide to stick with that.  This state is in free-fall, and anyone with eyes can see it.  And anyone with a brain is starting to think of ways to make their life elsewhere.  It breaks my goddamned heart to see us commit collective suicide, but here we are.

 

 

Why are you buying clothes from Dillards?  

Neiman Marcus is the answer.  

But you are right.  I am glad I got out.  I mean, I know New York isn't perfect. Bill de Blasio hates most New Yorkers (especially those of us that pay significant taxes to pay for his programs run by his wife where the money just, poof, disappears) and Cuomo has killed all the olds.  But I at least feel that if the rubber meets the road, New York is trying.  It isn't perfect, and there is significant room for improvement (rooting out corruption in the NYPD and MTA are two good starting points), but I am glad I am here and not in Texas any longer.  

There needs to be a reckoning with state leadership.  My dad, who is a massive Republican supporter, was pretty hacked off at Abbott going on Fox news and point blank lying.  If you can get people that pissed off about it, that might include some change.  It is refreshing to hear that from my dad.  Of course, he also knows that I know a shitload more about the energy industry in Texas than I did, so I might have told him Abbott was lying, and was doing it to fulfill a political agenda (Narrator: He was), and he believed me readily.

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1 minute ago, PenelopeWitherspoon said:

Why are you buying clothes from Dillards?  

Neiman Marcus is the answer.  

But you are right.  I am glad I got out.  I mean, I know New York isn't perfect. Bill de Blasio hates most New Yorkers (especially those of us that pay significant taxes to pay for his programs run by his wife where the money just, poof, disappears) and Cuomo has killed all the olds.  But I at least feel that if the rubber meets the road, New York is trying.  It isn't perfect, and there is significant room for improvement (rooting out corruption in the NYPD and MTA are two good starting points), but I am glad I am here and not in Texas any longer.  

There needs to be a reckoning with state leadership.  My dad, who is a massive Republican supporter, was pretty hacked off at Abbott going on Fox news and point blank lying.  If you can get people that pissed off about it, that might include some change.  It is refreshing to hear that from my dad.  Of course, he also knows that I know a shitload more about the energy industry in Texas than I did, so I might have told him Abbott was lying, and was doing it to fulfill a political agenda (Narrator: He was), and he believed me readily.

All true.  But you know the punchline....we'll stick with the leadership that broke us.  And you know it.

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Just now, Brisketexan said:

All true.  But you know the punchline....we'll stick with the leadership that broke us.  And you know it.

which brings me to one of my favorite figurative exchanges:

”we dug ourselves into this hole, we’ll dig ourselves out.”

”uh yeah, that’s not how holes work.”

 

 

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Just now, Brisketexan said:

Joske's was also under consideration.  Like I said, man....6th generation Texan.

When I was young (elementary school), Dillards was the shit.  We also had a Bealls.  My mom bought me all my Guess jeans from Bealls and Dillards (My dad thought it was ridiculous to pay $50 for a pair of jeans back in the 80s - He nearly choked when I told him what my clothes cost now......LOL).

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14 minutes ago, Brisketexan said:

To the contrary, over the past few years, I know more and more people – educated people, people who can do their jobs elsewhere, who are looking to bail on this state. 

* raises hand *

wayward pines GIF

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2 minutes ago, Beau Vine said:

* raises hand *

wayward pines GIF

I would like to move to another country, but I have yet to figure that one out yet.  Biden winning probably stayed my hand on that for the present, but I would probably leave with change in control of the House/Senate or a Trumpublican victory in 2024.

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I think there is an argument to be made that because you are a sixth generation Texan, by virtue of that fact, you should and maybe even have a duty to stay and help turn it purple/blue. If all able bodied, allegedly intelligent, resourced people are bailing, wouldn’t that kill the change momentum and embolden those who like the failed state, as you termed it?

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22 minutes ago, PenelopeWitherspoon said:

But you are right.  I am glad I got out.

 

As a life long Texan, I finally got out in December of 2019.   There isn't a single day I regret the decision.  But I would be lying if I said politics was a primary motivator. 

 

 

Edited by MC Fresh Breath
i was rambling.
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I've said it before and I'll say it again - 

The 4 extremely influential Republicans in the state of Texas:

  • State GOP Chair Allen West - Florida transplant born in Georgia
  • LG Dan Patrick (the most powerful position in the state government) - Maryland transplant
  • Senator Ted Cruz - Canadian transplant
  • AG Ken Paxton - North Dakota transplant (granted, Air Force kid)

Texas has ceded the majority of its state influence to fucking transplants and then whines about transplants bringing "their values" to Texas. 

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Just now, Dr. Teeth said:

You people are rich. My poor ass had to shop at Weiner's when I was a kid and hope to find a polo shirt with an upside down logo to wear.

My mom loved Weiner's (yes, I get the joke there, ha ha, but she really did drag me to that store a lot when I was a kid when she went shopping) 

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2 minutes ago, ChiTownDoc said:

Texas.  At least we’re not Oklahoma.  

Counterpoint, Oklahoma has legalized medicinal marijuana and gambling. 

I'd like to think this latest failure by the Texas government will put to rest these silly notions of secession considering we're having no issue taking the hand the Federal government is extending. But who am I kidding, the Biden Administration will do something next week that will get these fucktards all redassed. 

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Just now, mdmost said:

Counterpoint, Oklahoma has legalized medicinal marijuana and gambling. 

I'd like to think this latest failure by the Texas government will put to rest these silly notions of secession considering we're having no issue taking the hand the Federal government is extending. But who am I kidding, the Biden Administration will do something next week that will get these fucktards all redassed. 

What failure by the Texas government?

Last i checked:

  • COVID was the fault of the Chinamen
  • The blackouts and power issues are the fault of the AOC Democrats and the Green New Deal that isn't even a law

Texas can only protect itself against China and AOC by seceding. 

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10 minutes ago, Beantown Express 2.0 said:

Let’s say you leave Texas.  Where do you go?  

This is my question. I don't know enough about other states to know where the sane ones are that I can still afford.

But realistically I don't think I can leave. My wife and I are both teachers and have too many years invested into TRS. We aren't eligible for social security.

I know theoretically I could teach anywhere but it isn't super straight forward to just get certified in another state and go find a job. We are in a good spot at one of the actual good school districts in Texas. And again, the retirement situation... It is a bit of a gamble to try a move and my kids have their grandparents here, etc.

But it gets more and more depressing each year to watch Texas ruin itself.

Edited by Hawndoh
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Well said Brisket.  I am mutigenerational Texan as well.  Moved a few years ago, not because of politics, but because of work.  Moved to VA.  There are many things I miss about Texas, especially the food and the people (some).  However, it is amazingly refreshing to live somewhere where the state and local government officials do not view government as a problem that needs to be destroyed.  My kids can attend public school and feel safe and get a decent education,  instead of me having to dish out for private  school like I had to in Texas where schools were criminally underfunded.   There are community centers with nice facilities, pools, full service libraries with real hours, dirt cheap community classes and summer child adventure camps.  When I have an issue, I call the city government and the issue is taken care of, almost immediately without any need to make numerous calls.  My representative's office answers his phone , and actually calls me back when I leave a message.   I lost my driver's license a few months ago.  A trip to the DMV was 15 min and painless, cause it was appropriately staffed.   My daughter is graduating and she and her classmates have a ton on top notch affordable public college choices, not just one and then a bunch of community  college equivalents.   Yea I have to pay a small amount of state income tax, but my property tax is pennies which more than makes up what I paid in Texas.    I love Texas, and will always be a Texan, but gotdamn something has to change and soon.  

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13 minutes ago, Beantown Express 2.0 said:

Let’s say you leave Texas.  Where do you go?  

Might I suggest Northwest Arkansas.  (Fuck the rest of Arkansas.)

Tax rate is slightly higher but when you factor in what you'd pay for a house in Texas and the appropriate property tax, it's not that much higher.  It makes all of the Best Places to Live for a reason, especially if you're into outdoorsy stuff.

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I think what I find especially crass right now is Governor Fuckface going on Fox News to whine about the Green New Deal. With all the suffering that's going on right now and will happen after we thaw out given our infrastructure is so antiquated and fragile, he has the gall to go on Fox News to score political points. I would seriously love to throw his ass out in the middle of the most frozen remote part of Texas with only his wits to help him survive. All this bluster about how well the Texas government works from the GOP. It works for businesses which is all they care about. And they will keep getting reelected because the morons in this state continually vote against their own interests because they believe all this mythical impending AOC socialism is the real thing to worry about. Not our crumbling infrastructure that has failed the entire state because greed wins the day because big bad government regulation is the true enemy of the people.

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I think there is an argument to be made that because you are a sixth generation Texan, by virtue of that fact, you should and maybe even have a duty to stay and help turn it purple/blue. If all able bodied, allegedly intelligent, resourced people are bailing, wouldn’t that kill the change momentum and embolden those who like the failed state, as you termed it?


Yeah...I have given that argument to my kids. And believed it myself.

But at some point, when the place you love is irreparably broken, and is doubling down on continuing that path with angry defiance....you have to do what is right for you and yours. It’s why people have fled failed states all over the world. They may still love their homeland, but they had to leave.

I used to want to fix this place that I love. But when every idea that would help is met with a defiant “fuck you, commie!”....well, some places can’t be saved.

This is my question. I don't know enough about other states to know where the sane ones are that I can still afford.
But realistically I don't think I can leave. My wife and I are both teachers and have too many years invested into TRS. We aren't eligible for social security.
I know theoretically I could teach anywhere but it isn't super straight forward to just get certified in another state and go find a job. We are in a good spot at one of the actual good school districts in Texas. And again, the retirement situation... It is a bit of a gamble to try a move and my kids have their grandparents here, etc.
But it gets more and more depressing each year to watch Texas ruin itself.


Oh, I have to finish out my career here. I’m licensed in Texas and have built my practice here. So, we have to bear down and finish our earning years here.

But where would we head? Depends on where the kids end up. Without that being a factor, how about Fort Colins? Maybe Washington state. Parts of Utah. We’d love foreign - Canada, Germany would be great. We’ll see if one of the kids ends up there, and maybe we’d have a path in.
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3 minutes ago, Aqua Buddha said:

Might I suggest Northwest Arkansas.  (Fuck the rest of Arkansas.)

Tax rate is slightly higher but when you factor in what you'd pay for a house in Texas and the appropriate property tax, it's not that much higher.  It makes all of the Best Places to Live for a reason, especially if you're into outdoorsy stuff.

I am not the outdoorsy type at all.  Wherever I live I need to be near a major airport because I do travel for a living.  American Airlines access would be a plus due to my status with them.

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Just now, Beantown Express 2.0 said:

I am not the outdoorsy type at all.  Wherever I live I need to be near a major airport because I do travel for a living.  American Airlines access would be a plus due to my status with them.

Charlotte, then?  Good access to mountains and beaches.  

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3 minutes ago, Beantown Express 2.0 said:

Maybe.  I was thinking Asheville though I have never visited.  Wife likes mountains.  I like beaches.  She will probably win.

Went to Asheville for the first time this past summer and really, really liked it.  It'd be on the short list for retirement except it's basically like where I live now.  Great weather, legitimate mountains, really pretty and a very good food/beer scene.  Nice four seasons, too.

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7 minutes ago, Brisketexan said:

 


Yeah...I have given that argument to my kids. And believed it myself.

But at some point, when the place you love is irreparably broken, and is doubling down on continuing that path with angry defiance....

 

But is this the case? Things seem to be trending the opposite way (away from doubling down and more to being purple and potentially blue). Isn’t that the trajectory in the last few elections? I guess I’m saying it seems that bailing out now is bailing out right before achieving the goal. Hang in there, Bubba!spacer.png

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I moved for work, not for the political situation, but I am determined to stay in the NE because of the situation in Texas.  That has meant changing industries, but I am ok with that anyway.  

As for living in another country, seriously looking at Portugal or France.  If it is true and I can work remotely, I seriously would do it.  

Also, I am a multi generational Texan as well.  At least 4rd gen across the board, and further back on at least one side of my mom and my dad both.

Edited by PenelopeWitherspoon
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14 minutes ago, Handcruser said:

Yeah, gonna disagree here. We got problems that’s for sure, but our residents aren’t leaving in droves for other states like CA and NY residents.

Not yet.

5th Generation, now living in a blue state with legal weed, working utilities, and folks that keep the Bible closed when company is over.  Very similar to the Texas of my youth.  But that world was buried with Lloyd Bentsen and will never be seen again by these eyes.  You just can't fix stupid, and that's the primary product of the state now.

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3 minutes ago, Herpa Derpa said:

Not yet.

Texas, about a decade ago, was something like 57% coming in to 43% going out.

The last 5 years, its been 47, 47, 45, 45, 45.  But Texas is no longer a top 5 inbound state.  It has fallen behind Idaho, Arizona, South Carolina, Tennessee, North Carolina, Florida and is barely ahead of Colorado, in terms of %. 

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