Re: Split Oregon and Washington along the Cascades
Author: Eastern Oregon
Date: 03-14-2018 - 00:14
In Oregon, the election results go something like this ... Multnomah County (Portland area) has overwhelmingly voted ____________ and there likely aren't enough votes in the rest of the state to override them. Remember that Portland is proud they are "weird" and once you get east of the Cascade Summit you will find very little that resembles that (except maybe Klamath Falls based on recent experience).
Nevada is in a similar situation - there's more residents in Clark County (Las Vegas area) than the rest of the state, so the basic feeling in the rest of the state is what Vegas wants, Vegas gets. (Yes, I am a former resident of NW Nevada). So elections are decided by Clark and Washoe (Reno area) counties where Liberals are now in the majority.
I agree that the voting majority should decide, but there are considerations with this. Is it fair that the residents of a few counties should always be to determine what 80-90% of the geographic areas residents must abide by?
There is no argument that that obviously areas of greater population likely create more taxes, but that does not necessarily mean they subsidize the rest of the state's residents.
To some degree, each state's residents in any particular area should be benefiting in proportion to the population - particularly where "entitlements" are involved. Now when it comes to transportation, it is quite possible that the rural areas might be subsidized, or are they? As far as Oregon going north/south, the Westside enjoys US101, US99 and I-5. Eastside has US97, US395 and some of US95 - mostly two lane roads. I-84 is actually benefits much of Washington as much as Oregon, but isn't federal highway funding supposed to benefit ALL interstate travelers? I would really hate to see what ODOT spends on I-5 in Portland compared to the rest of Oregon.
And urban areas often use rural areas as their playgrounds (remember much of the rural areas are federal and state lands) and as their dump. You don't dare build any polluting power plant or interstate pipeline in an urban area, but it's fine to put power plants (including wind, solar, carbon fuel and hydro), hi tension transmission lines and pipelines in rural areas to feed the urban lifestyle.
And since this is a railroad blog - it is even obvious with rail projects. Look at trying to export coal (and similar projects). Environmentalists (presumably more towards the liberal side and concentrated in urban areas) use their influence/majority to prevent supporting projects or even allow transportation through their counties (Spokane and Portland come to mind), but the jobs that would be created are typically in rural counties, often in adjoining states.
As far as Oregon, I would like to see everything east of the Cascade crest become its own state. I'm not sure how much of eastern Washington would like to join as I don't know their politics though it may be the Tri-Cities and Spokane Valley may not want anything to do with a potential conservative leaning majority. The state of Jefferson may have been a good idea in its day, but now it would make me nervous as marijuana farming might have too much of a liberal influence and come with too much baggage to be compatible. I would like to see much of Northeast California to join, maybe down east side of the Sierra crest as far south as Inyo County. Who knows, part of Northern Nevada might want to jump in at that point.
Just think, a state roughly based on the US395 corridor, yet most of the remaining rail lines would primarily cross it east-west. Personally I am generally conservative (registered as non-affiliated with any party) and politics have changed a whole lot over the last 40 years, so much to the extent I couldn't explain today's Democratic Party (or sexual identity) to my grandfathers.
Since compromise and respect are quickly disappearing and politics and populations in general continue to become more polarized and further apart, something will have to give. I wonder if Liberals will eventually qualify as a protected minority class in red states, and Conservatives will then become a protected minority class in blue states? Or maybe we should all just riot or yell on blogs until we get our way?