But while they stand athwart history, I live amid poverty. West Virginia once had more manufacturing jobs than coal mine jobs. Now we have more government jobs than anything. Well, someone has to ladle the food stamps and other welfare programs to the unemployed. Less than half the state's adults are in the workforce. These are not stay-at-home moms either.
The state is the beehive of opioid abuse, which is why we lead the nation in the rate of drug overdose deaths. You want to know why Williamson turned its back on Hillary? The good people who live there are sickened by the OxyContin abuse. They know taxpayers buy most of those prescription drugs. They know why the jobless turn to drugs.
Granted, free trade is a minor part of this. With 82 years of Democratic Party control of the Legislature came and 80-plus years of Democratic-control of the state Supreme Court came a thicket of laws, regulations and court rulings that companies don't want to bother trying to cut. Existing companies invested in factories elsewhere rather than modernizing plants here. Environmental laws accelerated that. Why spend a billion retrofitting an old factory when for half the price you can build a bigger and better plant for new in a state that is not anti-business?
But unbridled free trade does have a negative impact on West Virginia, and we know our partner countries cheat. Why not rein free trade in?
However, to question free trade among certain conservatives is to question global warming among any liberal. The anti-intellectualism among the Conservative Commentariat is as thick as it is in academia today. Ideology means never having to say you're sorry.
The Guardians of Conservatism in Washington today is as useless as liberalism. They care nothing about the people of this country. How do I know this? Read Kevin Williamson's Father Fuhrer piece in National Review. This in particular:
If you spend time in hardscrabble, white upstate New York, or eastern Kentucky, or my own native West Texas, and you take an honest look at the welfare dependency, the drug and alcohol addiction, the family anarchy — which is to say, the whelping of human children with all the respect and wisdom of a stray dog — you will come to an awful realization. It wasn’t Beijing. It wasn’t even Washington, as bad as Washington can be. It wasn’t immigrants from Mexico, excessive and problematic as our current immigration levels are. It wasn’t any of that.
Nothing happened to them. There wasn’t some awful disaster. There wasn’t a war or a famine or a plague or a foreign occupation. Even the economic changes of the past few decades do very little to explain the dysfunction and negligence — and the incomprehensible malice — of poor white America. So the gypsum business in Garbutt ain’t what it used to be. There is more to life in the 21st century than wallboard and cheap sentimentality about how the Man closed the factories down.Donald Trump is exposing the Conservative Commentariat for what it is: Vapid, vain, and vile. The maliciousness that the National Review shows toward Trump voters is just as nasty and unacceptable as the dung the Left threw at Sarah Palin.
One difference. One very big difference. Trump can handle himself and the press. The people will rise and smite their moral and intellectual superiors -- or at least the sallow saps who think they are our betters -- on both the left and the right.
By the way, Ben Howe is the founder of Howe Creative (obviously the answer is not very) whose clients include: the Heritage Foundation, the Daily Signal, Ted Cruz for Senate, John Cornyn for Senate, et cetera. His claim to fame was a 2014 documentary, "Bankrupt: How Cronyism and Corruption Brought Down Detroit,"
I will allow readers to decide what level of irony that is.