Tuesday, November 10, 2009

WashPost notes Hickory's plight

Last month it was "bust in banktown" - Binya Appelbaum's Washington Post situationer about Charlotte.

Today, economic trauma in Hickory makes above-the-fold of the Post front page.
Here's a link to the story. For those of us in the Carolinas, it's an old story: Textiles and furniture jobs have been bleeding overseas for years. (But we were comforting ourselves with all those stable, high-paying bank jobs.)

Interesting that in the larger U.S. media centers the plight of the Carolinas is only now sinking in. Charlotte and North Carolina have done a good job of positioning themselves in recent decades as "recession-proof" – now that it's clear we're NOT recession-proof, perceptions have lagged reality. As they usually do.


Anonymous said...

Our local leadership has focused on fighting others in the region rather than seeking partnerships to bring in jobs. We in Hickory will get little from Apple.

Anonymous said...

Please please please, stop the obsession with how national media covers the Charlotte region, and whether it covers it enough (such as the mayor's race). It makes us look so pathetically self-important, like we care way too much about what others think, and desperate for attention, any attention -- sort of like how 7th graders react to what others may or may not say about them. The national media's take on Charlotte should be greeted with either total disinterest or humor at best, but not dissected and taken seriously. See the Dave Barry's Pulitzer-winning column on how Miami should react to the New York Times' "concern" that Miami is in trouble for exhibit A on the only appropriate response other than silence.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

The purpose of this feature is to be divisive. To drum up a bunch of North versus South comments. Plain and simple. The more hits the site gets, the more comments posted, the better for the Observer to convince its advertisers that people are really interesed in the paper. And I call this a feature because its obviously not news. Another sad day reading this website.

Anonymous said...

These are good, well-written articles. Thanks for the links.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for bringing this up, Mary. It’s a sad situation, but I can’t sympathize with the Hickory area’s unemployed workers.

Folks knew for years that local industries were in decline. There was plenty of time to start taking night or day courses that would improve skills and ease the way into a new vocation. But that requires personal sacrifice, which apparently most adults out there aren’t willing to do.

So when the barn door slammed shut and they're outside, these "conservatives" eagerly accept government assistance funded by you and me. What a bunch of hypocrites.

Catwaba County would be first area to grouse about big government, yet these people want and rely on government tax-funded retraining and unemployment benefits. And they elected an uber-conservative Congressman, Patrick McHenry, who voted for the house bill that doubled the TAA funding for 2008-2009 and tripled it for 2010. Hey Big Spender!

The woman who lost her health insurance coverage needs to ask him how he voted on the national health care reform act. (Clue: Don't get sick, lady.)

Then she needs to apply for a temporary job as a census taker in 2010. McHenry’s website is encouraging his unemployed constituents to do just that. Who says that man doesn’t have solutions?

Anonymous said...

The Nanny State mentality is not unique to Catawba county. It's everywhere. Ever since the McDonald's coffee chick won her suit, the mentality of "I am not responsible for my behavior or my future" has been spreading like crazy. People expect other people to take care of them and for the government to fix anything that is wrong.

And I agree with the second poster. Charlotte's obsession with what other people think of it is pure middle-school behavior. Who cares if other cities don't like us?