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"How to Decimate a City"
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One of the weirder trends in American discourse these days is the decline in any sense of how long ago specific dates in the past were when asserting theories of historical causality. Black students at Princeton are oppressed by Woodrow Wilson, while Genius T. Coates blames everything on FDR’s FHA.

For example, here’s a big article in The Atlantic about how the current troubles of black people in Syracuse, NY are due to the construction of an elevated highway during the Eisenhower Administration:

How to Decimate a City

Syracuse thought that by building a giant highway in the middle of town it could become an economic powerhouse. Instead, it got a bad bout of white flight and the worst slum problem in America.

ALANA SEMUELS NOV 20, 2015 BUSINESS

The article doesn’t explain exactly when I-81 was built, but does say the money was raised in 1956, which was 59 years ago.

Commenters have jumped in to top the article’s sense of historical causality by saying that it wasn’t really the highway that ruined Syracuse economically, it was construction of the New York Central railroad and/or the Erie Canal, which was during the Clinton Administration (DeWitt Clinton, that is).

Screenshot 2015-11-22 18.33.39Nor is it fashionable to compare geographies to reality check one’s theories. For example, lots of upstate New York cities didn’t build elevated highways through downtown, but are also struggling today.

Conversely, about the same time as the Syracuse highway, Sherman Oaks/Encino in Southern California’s San Fernando Valley was sliced up by two freeways, the 101 (the Ventura Freeway) and the 405 (the San Diego Freeway).

So you can just imagine what an urban wasteland Sherman Oaks is today with all that transportation infrastructure. Here’s the bar in the lobby of the Arclight Cinemas Sherman Oaks ($16 per ticket), overlooking the 405 a block south of the 101. The window on the right is about 20 feet from the freeway:

Seriously, the problem with upstate New York today is that it was the high tech manufacturing capital of America in the 19th Century due to abundant waterfalls to drive mills and the influx of enterprising post-Puritan Yankees from nearby New England. There is still a lot of tech in upstate New York. Corning’s Gorilla Glass, that amazingly durable material in smartphone screens, was R&Ded in upstate New York (although it’s manufactured in Kentucky and overseas).

But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer. Cheap houses and generous welfare programs keep people around.

 
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  1. Here’s the bar in the lobby of the Arclight Cinemas Sherman Oaks ($16 per ticket)

    $16 per ticket??!! I’ve never heard of any theater in Palo Alto or nearby towns charging more than about $12, and usually $7.50 or $9.50 for matinees. No wonder Steve tends to drive a few miles to heavily Latino Van Nuys to see most of his movies…

    • Replies: @cthulhu
    @Ron Unz

    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I'm more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie. Of course, there are only a handful of movies that I care to see in a given year, so I can afford to splurge when I go see one.

    Replies: @Ron Unz, @Mr. Anon

    , @Dave Pinsen
    @Ron Unz

    I like that they have a bar in the lobby. I wonder why theaters don't have that here.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

  2. WhatEvvs [AKA "Internet Addict"] says:

    How to decimate a city? Dunno. 16 people just shot in NoLa. Gunfire “erupted.” Like lava from a volcano. Teens. Kids these days.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
    @WhatEvvs

    "Gunfire “erupted.” "

    I've long loved that phrase; no human agency involved.

    Replies: @njguy73

    , @WhatEvvs
    @WhatEvvs

    There's a litany of journalistic weasel words and phrases whose purpose is to conceal the truth. Larry Auster sensitized me to this. Tragedy....senseless...random....

    , @Federalist
    @WhatEvvs

    And the big issue in New Orleans right now is taking down the statues of Robert E. Lee and P.G.T. Beauregard. Maybe the gunfire "erupted" from a Confederate cavalry raid.

  3. Lot of families with children in up state NY.

  4. My theory for why Progressives have a folded timeline is that their religion is synchronic versus diachronic and it is emotional. The Western tradition, informed by the Catholic scholarly traditions, is diachronic and dispassionate. History is a series of events, each influencing the other. The French Revolution, for example, led to Napoleon, the latter being the result of the former.

    The Progressive sense of history is synchronic and emotional. The Civil Rights Movement has enormous emotional resonance with the left so it is of constant interest and talked about as if it happened yesterday. On the other hand, the near total domination of America urban centers by Progressive politicians has no emotional resonance so may as well have happened ten thousand years ago or not at all.

    http://thezman.com/wordpress/?p=4819

    • Agree: Federalist
  5. It seems that 101 no longer demarcates Palo Alto from the per-capita murder capital of the US in EPA. That’s good news.

    I always thought that was funny in a terrible way.

    I don’t know what the racial makeup of the town is anymore.

    Went to many movies on the safe side of the tracks back in the day though. Cheap.

  6. Their troubles (like my own parents’) all began in 1956, did you say?

    ***

    “THEY are afraid to say so in public, but many of the North’s big-city mayors groan in private that their biggest and most worrisome problem is the crime rate among Negroes.

    “In 1,551 U.S. cities, according to the FBI tally for 1956, Negroes, making up 10% of the U.S. population, accounted for about 30% of all arrests, and 60% of the arrests for crimes involving violence or threat of bodily harm—murder, non-negligent manslaughter, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. In one city after another, the figures—where they are not hidden or suppressed by politicians—reveal a shocking pattern. . . .”

    ***

    (http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,810262-1,00.html ]

  7. How to decimate a city:

    From wikipedia on East Palo Alto, a few yards from Palo Alto. Nevertheless, EPA had one of the highest murder and crime rates in the country for many years:

    With the outbreak of World War I, the north side of East Palo Alto became a military training ground, of which only the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in Menlo Park still exists. In the 1940s, East Palo Alto was a farming community with many Japanese residents. During the war, the Japanese were forced out, many to relocation centers, and did not return after the war. In the 1950s the farms were built over with cheap housing and many African-American families moved in. During the civil rights movement of the 1960s there was a renewed interest in African history, one expression of which was a fad for Swahili. The city was almost renamed Nairobi, center of the Swahili-speaking area in 1968 to reflect the population’s African roots.[13][14] Critics of the change pointed out that Nairobi was the capital of Kenya, in East Africa, and had little to do with the cultural roots of most black Americans. In the end, the change was not made.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Palo_Alto,_California

    • Replies: @Former Darfur
    @wren

    For what it's worth, Swahili was quite the fad at one time. Johnny Carson was studying it, Star Trek named its black female Comm Officer with a Swahili name and black power outfits all over Chicago, certainly, had Swahili names. It died out when people finally realized that US blacks were all far, far, far from anywhere where Swahili was and if they hadn't been the Swahili speakers and not Southern whites would have been their massa's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @wren

  8. Presumably however generous New York State is with the welfare bennies, those bennies go a lot farther in Syracuse than in NYC.

    Roadways, trains, etc., have far more often been associated with prosperity and economic vitality than with poverty. You can’t build an interstate exit in my city without the surrounding real estate immediately becoming inundated with retail stores, hotels, car dealerships, and professional offices. But that’s because the people who live in the neighborhoods that utilize those exits have these things called “jobs” at which they spend 20-60 hours per week of their time, and every couple of weeks they get these things called “paychecks” that allow them to spend this stuff called “money” at the stores, car dealerships, and professional offices in question.

  9. Two major factors here, I suspect. Welfare has made it unnecessary for the jobless to leave Syracuse. Mass immigration has made it difficult or even impossible for them to do so. If the unskilled, unemployed people in Syracuse pack up and move looking for work, there is little chance they’ll find it, as many of the jobs they’d be qualified for will be filled by illegal aliens.

    We are going to see an ever increasing number of cities and towns that look like Syracuse.

  10. This is a fairly common schtick, to blame urban freeways for black people’s problems.

    Some of the most expensive gentrified neighborhoods in the southeastern part of St. Louis City just happen to be close to interstate highways.

  11. Leftist conservative [AKA "radical_centrist"] says: • Website

    With the liberal political tribe, the boogeyman that is ultimately responsible for all evil is white racism….

    With the conservative political tribe, it’s welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash–welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent. Oh, yeah, food stamps. But if you think foodstamps are what keep people in upstate new york, well, then you must be a member of a certain political religion….

    • Replies: @another commenter
    @Leftist conservative


    welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.
     
    That's the kind of subtle racist dig that would get you banned in a lot of internet fora.
    , @bomag
    @Leftist conservative

    it’s welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain

    I'm usually lectured about corporate welfare by my friendly neighborhood leftist. There is something aversive about parasites, even if there are only a few.

    , @WRB
    @Leftist conservative


    Newsflash–welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.
     
    In the case of men, welfare is often concealed as bogus disability.
    , @AnotherDad
    @Leftist conservative


    With the conservative political tribe, it’s welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash–welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.
     
    But unlike "white racism", welfare really has been and *continues* to be a destructive.

    The conversion of welfare from a widows and orphans program, to a subsidy that allows women who can not get or keep a husband to have children, and then to essentially legitimate that family structure has indeed been a disaster. It is a *real* boogeyman.

    And yeah, it's been a particular disaster for blacks. Blacks always had much much higher illegitimacy--Africa\HBD. But when i was a kid, they were at least mimicking white family structure\norms.

    Now, if you think white fertility demographics look bad, you should see them for blacks. Smart college educated black women have terrible fertility. The educated, successful black men they hypergamously need don't exist in sufficient quantity and can, and do, often find white women. The net between this and inter-generational welfare, American blacks are actually getting dumber. (The only caveat is the inflow of white genes from more race mixing. Too complicated to calculate how it all shakes out.)

    ~~~
    What's needed is a eugenic welfare program. The cost of welfare is sterilization. If you're too incompetent to organize your life--fine, we won't let you starve. But that also means you're too incompetent to be having children.

    Replies: @ben tillman

    , @Herr Niemand
    @Leftist conservative

    But what brought them there in the first place?
    Explanation 1: Comparatively generous welfare benefits, civic culture, and until the 1970's -- jobs.
    Explanation 2: The absence of immigration restrictions with the former confederacy.

  12. 2Mintzin1 [AKA "Mike"] says:

    Interesting topic. There are lots of black people in Syracuse today who believe that the raised highway was deliberately installed to split up black neighborhoods, and thus dilute the black vote. That kind of silly paranoid non– analysis is almost not worth refuting. The fact is that the I – 81 elevated highway permits a lot of truck and vacationing automobile traffic to move between Pennsylvania/downstate New York and points upstate without encountering a traffic light.

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with… A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
    Jesus wept.

    This is such a dumb idea, I’m not even sure how to argue against it.

    Look, when you get down to it, New York state really doesn’t want to pay to replace the elevated highway, it is expensive. And Syracuse, despite its reliably Dem leadership, does not have the political pull that it had that it back in the 1960s.

    The only hope Syracuse has is that Cuomo II can be convinced to lay some state money on it, as he recently did for Buffalo.

    • Replies: @Ed
    @2Mintzin1

    Just about every city with a majority or near majority black population has some version of "The Plan". It's what blacks claim whites are doing to usurp blacks rightful place in the city.

    It's really big in DC among blacks.

    Replies: @Hrw-500

    , @AndrewR
    @2Mintzin1

    If recent weeks have shown anything it's that committed groups of angry blacks can punch well above their weight. Granted most of it has been in the playpen of academia, but I wonder what would happen if a few dozen blacks tried to occupy Cuomo's office. Heavy handed tactics to remove the "protesters" would make for bad optics in today's SJWified political arena.

    Replies: @Olorin

    , @Another Canadian
    @2Mintzin1


    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with… A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
     
    Is this similar to the kerfuffle in Buffalo about turning the evil Scajaquada Expressway into some neo-Frederick-Law-Olmstead pedestrian-friendly roadway? I think part of the push behind turning freeways into parkways is baby boomers retiring. When they don't need to commute anymore, they push to dismantle much of the unsightly commuting infrastructure. Toronto is having the same battle right now with the elevated Gardiner Expressway, wanting to replace it with a tree-lined boulevard.
    , @Buffalo Joe
    @2Mintzin1

    Mike, Humboldt Parkway was a tree lined street level road to downtown Buffalo. It was replaced with the Kensington Expressway, not elevated, but no traffic lights ,to move suburban traffic to downtown Buffalo. The black community here still blames a lot of their problems on the expressway, excuse du jour.

    , @Muse
    @2Mintzin1

    Boston used billions of federal. dollars to put the elevated freeway underground through downtown. It was a high water mark of leftist pork barrel spending, and corrupt construction contracts, and we all paid for it.

    It should be no surprise that Syracuse wants to copy Boston. Residents of liberal Oak Park IL have been proposing the same type of project for the freeway that bisects their community. The common denominator in all these boondoggles is that the democratic constituents enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure project while others pay for it. No different than a water park for students at Mizzou I guess.

    Replies: @Brutusale

  13. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I heard gorilla glass was invented many decades ago then put into storage because there was no market…and finally found its purpose in modern digital devices. Great story!

    PS I was hoping this headline was for an article on the supposed flattening of Racca in Syria by Putin. I for one do not believe ISIS is being destroyed. It’s nearly impossible to get any accurate reports of what has occurred since Russia started bombing.

    • Replies: @Hhsiii
    @Anonymous

    There's that lattice of coincidence again. We both mentioned Raqqa at 4:39 GMT.

  14. The article discusses the halcyon days when one of the local kids who went on to play for Syracuse made pocket money selling scrap he found by the park that was later cruelly bisected by the elevated highway. Sounds like it must have been a paradise. The picture of the park today doesn’t look so bad.

    Jim Brown went to Syracuse. And Ernie Davis, the first Aftican-American Heisman winner.

    All upstate is depressed. Binghamton, good SUNY flagship, depressed town, IBM left, with nearby Johnson City a former company town, all run by the shoe company that had free walk-in clinics, etc. The article tells you what really happened. Carrier left, same as most other industry. The university is good. I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region. And you can get good spiedies or beef on weck.

    Gotta add to the magic dirt meme. Magic blacktop. Hell we should just build a highway from Raqqa to Mosul and in 50 years no more ISIS.

    • Replies: @Hhsiii
    @Hhsiii

    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW for glassworks, which is a fun tour. We did it when we hit the Finger Lakes on the way to the Thousand Islands and Toronto.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @cthulhu, @Lot

    , @Boomstick
    @Hhsiii

    "I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region."

    I flipped through zillow, and while the prices are cheap, the real estate taxes look horrendous. I assume the income taxes and sales taxes are not pleasant, either.

    Replies: @Former Darfur, @Olorin

  15. the article, the subtext is that there is a live debate over closing the freeway into Syracuse. You see, they have already given up on using Section 8 vouchers and low income housing subsidies to move inner city folks to the suburbs. Most inner city folks don’t actually want to move. So, naturally, you have to force the suburban folks back to the city so the poor people don’t have to live around poor people.

    I seriously hope they make Genius T. the editor of the Atlantic. It won’t be less smart and it will be a lot more entertaining.

  16. A combination of this blog and some other media makes me long to experience 1950-60s Southern California.

    It’s odd to feel a sort of nostalgia for something I’ve never experienced and for a time I wasn’t alive. But it must have been a glorious place.

    What’s so sad is that it really only lasted for a such a small period of time.

    • Agree: E. Rekshun
    • Replies: @Discard
    @jacobsson

    It was certainly glorious compared to today's SoCal, but back then, it was just normal to we who knew no other way of life. Good schools, honest cops, cheap cars and cheap gas, Mexicans named John or Kim instead of Juan or Maria, jobs for the asking and beautiful weather (excepting the smog) 300 days a year, can spoil you for the rest of your life.

    , @Leftist conservative
    @jacobsson


    A combination of this blog and some other media makes me long to experience 1950-60s Southern California.

    It’s odd to feel a sort of nostalgia for something I’ve never experienced and for a time I wasn’t alive. But it must have been a glorious place.

    What’s so sad is that it really only lasted for a such a small period of time
     
    As a child I visted disneyland in the mid 1960s...that famous googie architecture was everywhere in socal...it was indeed like a fantasy land.
  17. @Ron Unz

    Here’s the bar in the lobby of the Arclight Cinemas Sherman Oaks ($16 per ticket)
     
    $16 per ticket??!! I've never heard of any theater in Palo Alto or nearby towns charging more than about $12, and usually $7.50 or $9.50 for matinees. No wonder Steve tends to drive a few miles to heavily Latino Van Nuys to see most of his movies...

    Replies: @cthulhu, @Dave Pinsen

    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I’m more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie. Of course, there are only a handful of movies that I care to see in a given year, so I can afford to splurge when I go see one.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
    @cthulhu


    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I’m more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie.
     
    Well, a few of the local theaters around here have switched over to those large reclining chairs, with assigned seats, both of which seem very inconvenient and annoy me, and some of the individual screening rooms are pretty small. In all my years living here, I'm not sure I've ever encountered any "teenage louts" at a theater, so maybe people in Northern CA are just better behaved. The big 16-screen multiplex is in Mountain View, just next to Google, and they only charge about $12, which still seems ridiculously expensive to me---$16 is just nuts.

    Fortunately, there's the local Stanford Theater, saved by one of the HP Packards over 20 years ago, which shows classic double feature films for $7, $4.50 for matinees, along with $1.50 popcorn and $1.50 sodas. It's always packed, and probably one of the most cost-effective non-profit investments I've ever come across.

    Replies: @Anonymous

    , @Mr. Anon
    @cthulhu

    One way of avoiding teenage louts at the movie theatre is to see movies intended for adults. Yeah, I know, there are not many of them. Actually a lot of adults can be just as bad. I went to see "Bridge of Spies" a few weeks ago, and I was surrounded by middle-aged-to-older people explaining the movie to one another.

  18. @Hhsiii
    The article discusses the halcyon days when one of the local kids who went on to play for Syracuse made pocket money selling scrap he found by the park that was later cruelly bisected by the elevated highway. Sounds like it must have been a paradise. The picture of the park today doesn't look so bad.

    Jim Brown went to Syracuse. And Ernie Davis, the first Aftican-American Heisman winner.

    All upstate is depressed. Binghamton, good SUNY flagship, depressed town, IBM left, with nearby Johnson City a former company town, all run by the shoe company that had free walk-in clinics, etc. The article tells you what really happened. Carrier left, same as most other industry. The university is good. I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region. And you can get good spiedies or beef on weck.

    Gotta add to the magic dirt meme. Magic blacktop. Hell we should just build a highway from Raqqa to Mosul and in 50 years no more ISIS.

    Replies: @Hhsiii, @Boomstick

    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW for glassworks, which is a fun tour. We did it when we hit the Finger Lakes on the way to the Thousand Islands and Toronto.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
    @Hhsiii

    Love the company. Made a boatload in the late 90's when all the scam telecom's were pouring hundreds of billions into vastly overbuilding the fiber-optic infrastructure. There's still a ton of dark fiber around today.

    Every commodity has its bubble.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=GLW+Interactive#{%22range%22:%22max%22,%22allowChartStacking%22:true}

    , @cthulhu
    @Hhsiii

    I was heartbroken when Corning closed down Steuben Glass a couple of years ago though. Some of the most beautiful art crystal pieces ever made came out of Steuben Glass. I can't afford most of it, but have managed to find some good bargains in Steuben crystal on eBay over the years, including one time when a confused seller re-listed two of the Steuben ship's decanters - a gorgeous combination of Art Deco and form-follows-function minimalism - as "buy it now" for a very low price, when she had intended to have that price as the auction starting price, and I got both pieces for a tenth of what just one of them was worth. Steuben crystal put Baccarat and Lalique to shame...

    , @Lot
    @Hhsiii


    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW
     
    That reminds me that Corning was briefly a hot tech stock because they were the main maker of fiber optic cables, and when demand exploded in the late 90'sthe company was like a mint. Rather than GLW meaning glassworks it meant glowworm. At its peak Corning was worth more than $100 billion.
  19. @Leftist conservative
    With the liberal political tribe, the boogeyman that is ultimately responsible for all evil is white racism....

    With the conservative political tribe, it's welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash--welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent. Oh, yeah, food stamps. But if you think foodstamps are what keep people in upstate new york, well, then you must be a member of a certain political religion....

    Replies: @another commenter, @bomag, @WRB, @AnotherDad, @Herr Niemand

    welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.

    That’s the kind of subtle racist dig that would get you banned in a lot of internet fora.

  20. @Anonymous
    I heard gorilla glass was invented many decades ago then put into storage because there was no market...and finally found its purpose in modern digital devices. Great story!

    PS I was hoping this headline was for an article on the supposed flattening of Racca in Syria by Putin. I for one do not believe ISIS is being destroyed. It's nearly impossible to get any accurate reports of what has occurred since Russia started bombing.

    Replies: @Hhsiii

    There’s that lattice of coincidence again. We both mentioned Raqqa at 4:39 GMT.

  21. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Here’s the bar in the lobby of the Arclight Cinemas Sherman Oaks ($16 per ticket)

    Incidentally, are movie theaters getting a lot nicer now? I hadn’t been to my local suburban movie theater, which is one of those big box suburban theaters that was built in the early 90s, for several years. It had that old 80s/90s style carpeting and was starting to get very dated and crummy inside. I finally went to the theater again this year and was completely surprised because it had been completely renovated on the inside with a bar and a large food selection, and the seats in the theater were converted into huge recliner seats. I had stopped going to the movies because of Redbox and Netflix, but the nicer amenities and seating have definitely gotten me to go back to the theater more now than I would have otherwise.

  22. which was during the Clinton Administration (DeWitt Clinton, that is).

    Hilarious.

    The amount of architectural and industry wealth that Upstate New York once had is staggering. How much this wealth has been allowed to go to seed is heartbreaking. You don’t need to watch apocalyptic Sci-Fi to see how much societies can decline within a few generations, just visit upstate New York State outside the Hudson Valley. Even in the revived Hudson River Valley towns, a block or two from the art gallery clogged main drags, the towns are an otherworldly mix of Appalachia and the Bronx. Welfare and heroin are the mainstays of the economies, yet there are stunning buildings left over from a prior civilization of entrepreneurism and industrial empire.

    • Replies: @wren
    @Clifford Brown

    Detroit used to be one of the richest cities in the US.

    http://youtu.be/5ZO0fgxdsFU

    http://youtu.be/7BYFSAt-WX8

  23. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer. Cheap houses and generous welfare programs keep people around.

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    I had no idea there were blacks in Syracuse, other than the Orangemen basketball team. Then again, I was surprised to learn from you that there are blacks in Wisconsin. Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    , @Jefferson
    @Anonymous

    "I had no idea there were blacks in Syracuse, other than the Orangemen basketball team. Then again, I was surprised to learn from you that there are blacks in Wisconsin. Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?"

    Syracuse is 27 percent Black, so it would be quite hard to mistake it for a Whitopia like Vermont. For Blacks it is not always about moving to a place with nice warm weather all year long. If it was, than San Diego with it's perfect 10 weather would be one of the Blackest cities in America and Syracuse with it is God awful bone chilling ice box weather would be as White as Helsinki.

    , @Reg Cæsar
    @Anonymous


    Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?
     
    Buffalo gets the all-the-snow-at-once blizzards off the (other) lake. But Syracuse gets 50% more snow over the winter. It's just more steady.

    Syracuse is the snowiest city in the lower 48, and ties with Juneau, Alaska. Though UP villages where only Finns are crazy enough to live get 50% more snow than Syracuse.

    By the way, in 1956 Syracuse had an NBA team, as did Rochester. They're in Philadelphia and Sacramento now.

    Replies: @EriK, @Rapparee

  24. Didn’t Robert Moses do this on a much bigger scale, in a much bigger city, NYC? Now it’s pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs. Before Moses, it was pretty much impossible I think. It would have taken forever, at any rate.

    • Replies: @Clifford Brown
    @Anonymous


    Didn’t Robert Moses do this on a much bigger scale, in a much bigger city, NYC? Now it’s pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs. Before Moses, it was pretty much impossible I think. It would have taken forever, at any rate.
     
    No, I can assure you that it is not "pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs", but I do agree it would be wrong to blame this on Moses. Moses started his fascinating tenure in various NY State bureaucracies back in the 1930's when there were no highways. He built highways for good and ill, built parks, beaches and massive housing projects. He was New York's "Master Builder". New Yorkers live in the shadow of Moses' massive public works that we could never build in our present age.

    Still, his ego knew no bounds and he only saw the City as a place to plan, not a place to live. If he had his way, he would have bulldozed many of New York's most cherished neighborhoods. Moses in the end was a hero of New York City, but a tragic one doomed by his own hubris and lack of perspective.

    If you are at all interested in urban planning in America, the history of New York City or highway development in America, The Power Broker by Robert Caro is a must read.
    , @george
    @Anonymous

    Paying off the bonds used to finance Moses' projects were one reason for the fiscal crisis of the 60s - 80s.

    NY state taxes, to pay for the highway, are more responsible for the decline than things like where a highway is.

    NY city is very immigrant intensive, so I wonder if Trump or Sanders cuts off the supply of cheap labor would less dependent places like Syracuse do better.

  25. @Anonymous

    But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer. Cheap houses and generous welfare programs keep people around.
     
    Wasn't Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    I had no idea there were blacks in Syracuse, other than the Orangemen basketball team. Then again, I was surprised to learn from you that there are blacks in Wisconsin. Doesn't upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Jefferson, @Reg Cæsar

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It’s apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
    @Steve Sailer

    IBM too, and even after decades of layoffs, there's more to come

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertcringely/2015/01/26/anatomy-of-a-layoff-how-ibm-is-likely-to-spin-this-weeks-force-reduction/

    , @Clifford Brown
    @Steve Sailer

    Andrew Carnegie's grave in Sleepy Hollow. Subdued for the time period.

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/6232492601/in/photostream/

    , @Desiderius
    @Steve Sailer

    I believe Rochester/Kodak was Patient Zero for the Alinsky Plague.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/280407/full-alinsky-michael-walsh

    , @Reg Cæsar
    @Steve Sailer



    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?
     
    Xerox too.

     

    And Bausch & Lomb, and General Electric, which spawned NBC radio. IBM did its work in Broome County.

    I believe RPI in Troy was the first engineering school in the land. It was parodied in a Kurt Vonnegut novel.
    , @anon
    @Steve Sailer

    Mark Twain, author of “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” - did you not think that we knew who Mark Twain was?

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    , @Buffalo Joe
    @Steve Sailer

    Steve, Kodak and Xerox were headquartered in Rochester. Great jobs and phenomenal benefits. No highway or expressway turned Roc to trash, it was done in by technology. Who uses photo film any more? Rochester does have a black mayor though, Lovely Warren.

    Replies: @2Mintzin1

    , @2Mintzin1
    @Steve Sailer

    Upstate New York outside of major cities has been depopulating for many years (some of this is going on within the cities themselves, of course but the populations there tend to be somewhat more stable because, let's face it, they don't necessarily have to work to exist).
    Syracuse probably has the worst murder problem I have seen, considering its small population. One of the local police officers got into trouble last year when he admitted to a newspaper reporter that a good deal of this was due to Mexican drug dealers fighting it out with the locals. There really aren't any jobs, and young men hang out in the street all day, a recipe for trouble. The south side of the city is pretty scary to drive through, even in daylight.

    As far as the upstate suburbs/rural areas are concerned, the white poverty really amazes me. Because New York State is now politically ruled by downstate (New York City/Westchester/Long Island), the ruling party really doesn't have any reason to help them. In fact, I would say that state policies which damage the upstate suburbs/rural areas ,such as Cuomo II's recent ban on fracking, are really kind of a win/win situation for the Dems... In a kind of Flynn Effect way, they drive people out of these traditionally Republican areas.

    Buffalo has reportedly received a lot of state money recently, which has helped it somewhat. I would guess that the original source of this was the Federal money-printing machine, but who knows. Government finance is one of the black arts.

    Replies: @2Mintzin1

  26. @WhatEvvs
    How to decimate a city? Dunno. 16 people just shot in NoLa. Gunfire "erupted." Like lava from a volcano. Teens. Kids these days.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @WhatEvvs, @Federalist

    “Gunfire “erupted.” ”

    I’ve long loved that phrase; no human agency involved.

    • Replies: @njguy73
    @Bill Jones

    Here's a 1994 article by Theodore Dalrymple titled, "The Knife Went In."

    http://www.city-journal.org/story.php?id=1371

  27. In Fairfield County, Connecticut, I-95, elevated and otherwise, runs right smack through some of America’s richest towns. Somehow it didn’t ruin or divide the neighborhood.

    When you live there, you forget about the fact that you’re crossing under an interstate highway on your way to the golf course or shopping. You only think about it when you have to take an onramp and drive somewhere — you hope not during rush hour and not into Manhattan. (Take the train.)

    Of course, they used magic concrete when they built that part of the highway.

    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Some used to blame another section of I-95 - the Cross Bronx Expressway - for ruining that part of the Bronx.

    Replies: @Buzz Mohawk, @prosa123

  28. @Hhsiii
    @Hhsiii

    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW for glassworks, which is a fun tour. We did it when we hit the Finger Lakes on the way to the Thousand Islands and Toronto.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @cthulhu, @Lot

    Love the company. Made a boatload in the late 90’s when all the scam telecom’s were pouring hundreds of billions into vastly overbuilding the fiber-optic infrastructure. There’s still a ton of dark fiber around today.

    Every commodity has its bubble.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=GLW+Interactive#{%22range%22:%22max%22,%22allowChartStacking%22:true}

  29. @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

  30. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    It goes like this.

    There are two cities with lots of blacks.

    City A has a highway, lakeside, big bridge, art museum, Japanese garden, and sports center.

    City B has a train station, airport, baseball park, English garden, casino, and opera house.

    Both cities went to hell. Why?

    Because City A didn’t have a train station, airport, baseball park, English garden, casino, & opera house, and because City B didn’t have a highway, lakeside, big bridge, art museum, Japanese garden, & sports center.

    It’s gotten to the point that if a Negro drops a jar of milk in the kitchen, you must blame the milk, the jar, the chair, the table, the counter, the sink, the window, the door, the stove, the microwave, the towel, the fridge, the kitchen, the house, the block, the neighborhood, the town, the county, the state, the nation, the world, the solar system, the galaxy, the cosmos… but not the Negro.

    Just give him a genius award.

  31. Coates is like a skunk who sincerely believes the odor is emanating from everything and everyone but his stupidass self.

  32. @Ron Unz

    Here’s the bar in the lobby of the Arclight Cinemas Sherman Oaks ($16 per ticket)
     
    $16 per ticket??!! I've never heard of any theater in Palo Alto or nearby towns charging more than about $12, and usually $7.50 or $9.50 for matinees. No wonder Steve tends to drive a few miles to heavily Latino Van Nuys to see most of his movies...

    Replies: @cthulhu, @Dave Pinsen

    I like that they have a bar in the lobby. I wonder why theaters don’t have that here.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @Dave Pinsen

    I think liquor licenses are loosening up in L.A. My impression is that Mayor Villaraigosa's grand strategy was to sign any kind of permit his handlers put in front of him.

  33. @Clifford Brown

    which was during the Clinton Administration (DeWitt Clinton, that is).
     
    Hilarious.

    The amount of architectural and industry wealth that Upstate New York once had is staggering. How much this wealth has been allowed to go to seed is heartbreaking. You don't need to watch apocalyptic Sci-Fi to see how much societies can decline within a few generations, just visit upstate New York State outside the Hudson Valley. Even in the revived Hudson River Valley towns, a block or two from the art gallery clogged main drags, the towns are an otherworldly mix of Appalachia and the Bronx. Welfare and heroin are the mainstays of the economies, yet there are stunning buildings left over from a prior civilization of entrepreneurism and industrial empire.

    Replies: @wren

    Detroit used to be one of the richest cities in the US.

    http://youtu.be/5ZO0fgxdsFU

    http://youtu.be/7BYFSAt-WX8

  34. @Buzz Mohawk
    In Fairfield County, Connecticut, I-95, elevated and otherwise, runs right smack through some of America's richest towns. Somehow it didn't ruin or divide the neighborhood.

    When you live there, you forget about the fact that you're crossing under an interstate highway on your way to the golf course or shopping. You only think about it when you have to take an onramp and drive somewhere -- you hope not during rush hour and not into Manhattan. (Take the train.)

    Of course, they used magic concrete when they built that part of the highway.

    Replies: @Dave Pinsen

    Some used to blame another section of I-95 – the Cross Bronx Expressway – for ruining that part of the Bronx.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
    @Dave Pinsen


    Some used to blame another section of I-95 – the Cross Bronx Expressway – for ruining that part of the Bronx.

     

    Somehow I don't think it was the Expressway.

    Come to think of it, I've passed through the Bronx enough times to know it's not the Expressway's fault.

    It's funny how a highway can run from the Gold Coast to the Ghetto within a few miles, and the only independent variable is the people.

    Replies: @TomSchmidt

    , @prosa123
    @Dave Pinsen

    One look* at the Cross-Bronx makes it clear why its construction did not "destroy" any neighborhoods. It runs through a trench that is much narrower than you ever would expect for a major thoroughfare, which kept the number of condemned properties to an absolute minimum. As there are overpasses every few blocks, the two sections of bisected neighborhoods are scarcely isolated from one another. Getting from one side to the other is a very minor inconvenience.
    * = even when driving there's plenty of time to look given the comically slow traffic on the Cross-Bronx.

    Peter

  35. BTW, Upstate New York is a good place to buy a farm and retire.

    I know several people who have done it. One guy left Wall Street around age 40 and did it. Another couple bought a dairy farm and are making boutique cheese. An older business owner got tired of how obnoxious people were becoming in the New York City megalopolis, said aw fuck it, and did it.

    Good land and agriculture are the often forgotten parts of New York.

    You can buy a lot of acreage for reasonable money, and the neighbors are all…shall we say… nice American types of people. Conservative even! Sharp and well educated in many instances.

    Everything depends on your perspective.

    • Replies: @Hhsiii
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Oh yeah, the wife loves to look at farmhouses upstate. Although she says too cold for her to retire there. She insists on California for that. I keep referring her to iSteve when she brings that up.

    Replies: @Buffalo Joe

    , @Another Canadian
    @Buzz Mohawk


    BTW, Upstate New York is a good place to buy a farm and retire.
     
    Your name must be James Howard Kunstler. Hey there, Jimmy.
    , @Dr. X
    @Buzz Mohawk

    No, Upstate New York is a HORRIBLE place to "retire and buy a farm." Sure, there's some nice scenery... but you've got the highest taxes in the nation, the worst gun laws in the nation, no jobs other than government jobs (e.g., state corrections or teacher) and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.

    The so-called "conservatives" in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas... and even then, they are completely and entirely outvoted on every single issue by the uber-liberal snobs of New York City.

    Replies: @Perspective, @Buzz Mohawk, @Reg Cæsar

  36. Lets suppose that some historical event really did cause material deprivation to a population. The question we should ask is, how long it take to recover from that? And for an answer, we can look at Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Tokyo, Dresden, and Berlin recovering from the damage of WW2, or Seoul after the Korean War.

    It seems to be about ~40 years for an otherwise high functioning society with access to modern technology to overcome material deprivation.

    If it takes longer than that, the cause is likely something other than material deprivation itself. It is instead about how the population chooses to respond to their adversity. It is not material but psychological.

    The three ways of explaining this difference, or this inequality

    1) That the group is somehow psychologically crippled due to oppression, this is what ideas like stereotype threat argue.

    2) That some cultures are just most functional than others, not due to adversity, but simply due to bad choices.

    3) That genetic influence plays an important role, and the reason why blacks are not as succesful as whites is because they have lower IQ.

    Egalitarianism only accepts #1. This means any inequality has to be blamed on oppression. It is inherently and necessarily blind to other explanations (otherwise it would cease being egalitarian.) The longer blacks fail to equal whites, the more whites are singled out and their behavior put under a microscope and reinterpreted as somehow oppressing blacks. The result is a comprehensive pattern of slandering whites.

    This is how “anti-racist” egalitarianism gives birth to dogmatic anti-white bigotry.

  37. @Dave Pinsen
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Some used to blame another section of I-95 - the Cross Bronx Expressway - for ruining that part of the Bronx.

    Replies: @Buzz Mohawk, @prosa123

    Some used to blame another section of I-95 – the Cross Bronx Expressway – for ruining that part of the Bronx.

    Somehow I don’t think it was the Expressway.

    Come to think of it, I’ve passed through the Bronx enough times to know it’s not the Expressway’s fault.

    It’s funny how a highway can run from the Gold Coast to the Ghetto within a few miles, and the only independent variable is the people.

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Think of a small business and its walk shed. Now, cut it in half, and remove 10,000 people to build a road through. Neighborhoods were utterly devastated by the road; they were mostly white in the 50s when they built it, and then became so undesireable (and businesses unsustainable) that only blacks and Hispanics would live there.

    Sometimes, it IS the road.

    Replies: @Buzz Mohawk

  38. There is no shortage of demand to build luxury housing along Lake Shore Drive in Chicago or now the West Side Highway in Manhattan. In East Asia, they have built ridiculous highways right through high density urban sprawl and the cities do not seem to suffer although there is generally a higher tolerance for pollution and zoning diversity.

    Although conventional wisdom is that LA has too many freeways, I believe that it is underserved and that new freeways would be a better use of transportation monies than the high speed rail to Palmdale.

  39. @Dave Pinsen
    @Ron Unz

    I like that they have a bar in the lobby. I wonder why theaters don't have that here.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    I think liquor licenses are loosening up in L.A. My impression is that Mayor Villaraigosa’s grand strategy was to sign any kind of permit his handlers put in front of him.

  40. @Anonymous
    Didn't Robert Moses do this on a much bigger scale, in a much bigger city, NYC? Now it's pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs. Before Moses, it was pretty much impossible I think. It would have taken forever, at any rate.

    Replies: @Clifford Brown, @george

    Didn’t Robert Moses do this on a much bigger scale, in a much bigger city, NYC? Now it’s pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs. Before Moses, it was pretty much impossible I think. It would have taken forever, at any rate.

    No, I can assure you that it is not “pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs”, but I do agree it would be wrong to blame this on Moses. Moses started his fascinating tenure in various NY State bureaucracies back in the 1930’s when there were no highways. He built highways for good and ill, built parks, beaches and massive housing projects. He was New York’s “Master Builder”. New Yorkers live in the shadow of Moses’ massive public works that we could never build in our present age.

    Still, his ego knew no bounds and he only saw the City as a place to plan, not a place to live. If he had his way, he would have bulldozed many of New York’s most cherished neighborhoods. Moses in the end was a hero of New York City, but a tragic one doomed by his own hubris and lack of perspective.

    If you are at all interested in urban planning in America, the history of New York City or highway development in America, The Power Broker by Robert Caro is a must read.

  41. Syracuse is where former WWE champion The Heart Break Kid Shawn Michaels was jumped by a bunch of Black thugs in the parking lot while walking to his car at night. This happened in 1995.

  42. @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    Andrew Carnegie’s grave in Sleepy Hollow. Subdued for the time period.

    Andrew Carnegie grave - Sleepy Hollow Cemetery 006

  43. @Hhsiii
    @Hhsiii

    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW for glassworks, which is a fun tour. We did it when we hit the Finger Lakes on the way to the Thousand Islands and Toronto.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @cthulhu, @Lot

    I was heartbroken when Corning closed down Steuben Glass a couple of years ago though. Some of the most beautiful art crystal pieces ever made came out of Steuben Glass. I can’t afford most of it, but have managed to find some good bargains in Steuben crystal on eBay over the years, including one time when a confused seller re-listed two of the Steuben ship’s decanters – a gorgeous combination of Art Deco and form-follows-function minimalism – as “buy it now” for a very low price, when she had intended to have that price as the auction starting price, and I got both pieces for a tenth of what just one of them was worth. Steuben crystal put Baccarat and Lalique to shame…

  44. @Anonymous

    But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer. Cheap houses and generous welfare programs keep people around.
     
    Wasn't Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    I had no idea there were blacks in Syracuse, other than the Orangemen basketball team. Then again, I was surprised to learn from you that there are blacks in Wisconsin. Doesn't upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Jefferson, @Reg Cæsar

    “I had no idea there were blacks in Syracuse, other than the Orangemen basketball team. Then again, I was surprised to learn from you that there are blacks in Wisconsin. Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?”

    Syracuse is 27 percent Black, so it would be quite hard to mistake it for a Whitopia like Vermont. For Blacks it is not always about moving to a place with nice warm weather all year long. If it was, than San Diego with it’s perfect 10 weather would be one of the Blackest cities in America and Syracuse with it is God awful bone chilling ice box weather would be as White as Helsinki.

  45. Back when it was home to Kodak, Bausch & Lomb and Xerox, Rochester was (if in a small way) the Silicon Valley of its time.

    The Finger Lakes area is beautiful. Tons of small towns ready to be discovered and turned into cute, picture-perfect places, and lots of land and houses ready to be bought for a song. Wineries, vistas, farms, and an up-and-coming upscale food culture. Plus: Ithaca, a great little college town, as well, for culture, quick access to Syracuse and Rochester, and fairly easy access to NYC. OK, winters are brutal, and summers aren’t much fun either, what with the humidity and mosquitos.

    FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good.

    • Replies: @bjdubbs
    @Paleo Retiree

    It's an elevated highway so it doesn't impede pedestrian traffic, it's just an eyesore. The L in Chicago bisects plenty of neighborhoods that are perfectly healthy.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Mike Zwick

    , @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels -- Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin -- of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.

    Replies: @Pat Gilligan

    , @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    "FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good."

    That's an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it's not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    Replies: @Fool, @Jerry, @Anonymous, @stillCARealist, @myb6

    , @Another Canadian
    @Paleo Retiree

    My son and I were at an AAU basketball tournament in Syracuse a few years ago and stayed in Auburn. There was this drive-in restaurant overlooking the lake that must have been from the 1950s. We all loved it; it was like going back in time. The Finger Lakes is one of America's high quality of life and low cost regions.

    Replies: @Anon87

    , @Anonymous
    @Paleo Retiree

    That's true, but on the other hand, people can be very adaptable, and if people have few options but to walk between city neighborhoods, they can just get used to things like people emptying chamber pots out of windows and on the streets and horseshit being everywhere.

  46. @Hhsiii
    @Hhsiii

    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW for glassworks, which is a fun tour. We did it when we hit the Finger Lakes on the way to the Thousand Islands and Toronto.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @cthulhu, @Lot

    And nice mention for Corning. Ticker symbol still GLW

    That reminds me that Corning was briefly a hot tech stock because they were the main maker of fiber optic cables, and when demand exploded in the late 90’sthe company was like a mint. Rather than GLW meaning glassworks it meant glowworm. At its peak Corning was worth more than $100 billion.

  47. @Anonymous
    Didn't Robert Moses do this on a much bigger scale, in a much bigger city, NYC? Now it's pretty easy to zip around the Tri-State area through NYC and its boroughs. Before Moses, it was pretty much impossible I think. It would have taken forever, at any rate.

    Replies: @Clifford Brown, @george

    Paying off the bonds used to finance Moses’ projects were one reason for the fiscal crisis of the 60s – 80s.

    NY state taxes, to pay for the highway, are more responsible for the decline than things like where a highway is.

    NY city is very immigrant intensive, so I wonder if Trump or Sanders cuts off the supply of cheap labor would less dependent places like Syracuse do better.

  48. @Hhsiii
    The article discusses the halcyon days when one of the local kids who went on to play for Syracuse made pocket money selling scrap he found by the park that was later cruelly bisected by the elevated highway. Sounds like it must have been a paradise. The picture of the park today doesn't look so bad.

    Jim Brown went to Syracuse. And Ernie Davis, the first Aftican-American Heisman winner.

    All upstate is depressed. Binghamton, good SUNY flagship, depressed town, IBM left, with nearby Johnson City a former company town, all run by the shoe company that had free walk-in clinics, etc. The article tells you what really happened. Carrier left, same as most other industry. The university is good. I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region. And you can get good spiedies or beef on weck.

    Gotta add to the magic dirt meme. Magic blacktop. Hell we should just build a highway from Raqqa to Mosul and in 50 years no more ISIS.

    Replies: @Hhsiii, @Boomstick

    “I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region.”

    I flipped through zillow, and while the prices are cheap, the real estate taxes look horrendous. I assume the income taxes and sales taxes are not pleasant, either.

    • Replies: @Former Darfur
    @Boomstick

    Two things-onerous state taxes and gun control laws-caused me to pass up what would have been a plum job (at the time) on the Southern Tier of New York State. It was just a little too far north the Pennsy line to commute. I liked the people and loved the scenery and could tolerate the snow, since the job would have paid enough to buy a 4WD truck.

    , @Olorin
    @Boomstick

    Or as I like to remind people in the market for Getaway From Doom (however you define it), these days, you either pay through the nose for real estate or you pay through the nose for the right to occupy the place you bought.

    Either way, nobody "owns" a house anymore. Everybody's renting--at least in the dying middle class.

    I'd expect demographic/genetic commonalities among people who would rather overpay for a house and have the money go to the seller or developer, than underpay for a house and have the money go to the undertow (as taxes).

  49. @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    I believe Rochester/Kodak was Patient Zero for the Alinsky Plague.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/280407/full-alinsky-michael-walsh

  50. @2Mintzin1
    Interesting topic. There are lots of black people in Syracuse today who believe that the raised highway was deliberately installed to split up black neighborhoods, and thus dilute the black vote. That kind of silly paranoid non– analysis is almost not worth refuting. The fact is that the I – 81 elevated highway permits a lot of truck and vacationing automobile traffic to move between Pennsylvania/downstate New York and points upstate without encountering a traffic light.

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with... A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
    Jesus wept.

    This is such a dumb idea, I'm not even sure how to argue against it.

    Look, when you get down to it, New York state really doesn't want to pay to replace the elevated highway, it is expensive. And Syracuse, despite its reliably Dem leadership, does not have the political pull that it had that it back in the 1960s.

    The only hope Syracuse has is that Cuomo II can be convinced to lay some state money on it, as he recently did for Buffalo.

    Replies: @Ed, @AndrewR, @Another Canadian, @Buffalo Joe, @Muse

    Just about every city with a majority or near majority black population has some version of “The Plan”. It’s what blacks claim whites are doing to usurp blacks rightful place in the city.

    It’s really big in DC among blacks.

    • Replies: @Hrw-500
    @Ed

    Was it really big as well in Detroit? The former area known as Black Bottom was claimed by I-375 but also with urban renewal projects.
    http://detroithistorical.org/learn/encyclopedia-of-detroit/black-bottom-neighborhood
    http://www.motorcities.org/Story/Detroits+Black+Bottom+and+Paradise+Valley-37.html
    http://www.detroits-great-rebellion.com/Urban-Renewal.html

    One poster on City-data forum nicknamed 313Weather said about the plowing of Poletown:


    Long story short, it was Coleman Young's "revenge" for the plowing down of Hastings Street/Black Bottom to build I-75.

     
  51. @Leftist conservative
    With the liberal political tribe, the boogeyman that is ultimately responsible for all evil is white racism....

    With the conservative political tribe, it's welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash--welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent. Oh, yeah, food stamps. But if you think foodstamps are what keep people in upstate new york, well, then you must be a member of a certain political religion....

    Replies: @another commenter, @bomag, @WRB, @AnotherDad, @Herr Niemand

    it’s welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain

    I’m usually lectured about corporate welfare by my friendly neighborhood leftist. There is something aversive about parasites, even if there are only a few.

  52. @Buzz Mohawk
    @Dave Pinsen


    Some used to blame another section of I-95 – the Cross Bronx Expressway – for ruining that part of the Bronx.

     

    Somehow I don't think it was the Expressway.

    Come to think of it, I've passed through the Bronx enough times to know it's not the Expressway's fault.

    It's funny how a highway can run from the Gold Coast to the Ghetto within a few miles, and the only independent variable is the people.

    Replies: @TomSchmidt

    Think of a small business and its walk shed. Now, cut it in half, and remove 10,000 people to build a road through. Neighborhoods were utterly devastated by the road; they were mostly white in the 50s when they built it, and then became so undesireable (and businesses unsustainable) that only blacks and Hispanics would live there.

    Sometimes, it IS the road.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
    @TomSchmidt

    I understand what you are saying, but explain to me this: Why didn't the same highway system, right next door, destroy one of the richest counties in the Untited States, Fairfield CT ???

    I-95 was pushed right through Fairfield County and its towns, yet people are still outbidding each other to live there.

    If you read this comment on this stale thread, and if I look back and see it, I will tell you what my father, a died-in-the-wool Westerner descended from people who went from the Northeast to California during the Gold Rush, a man who reluctantly had to do business on the East Coast (like me), taught me about New Yorkers...

  53. @Paleo Retiree
    Back when it was home to Kodak, Bausch & Lomb and Xerox, Rochester was (if in a small way) the Silicon Valley of its time.

    The Finger Lakes area is beautiful. Tons of small towns ready to be discovered and turned into cute, picture-perfect places, and lots of land and houses ready to be bought for a song. Wineries, vistas, farms, and an up-and-coming upscale food culture. Plus: Ithaca, a great little college town, as well, for culture, quick access to Syracuse and Rochester, and fairly easy access to NYC. OK, winters are brutal, and summers aren't much fun either, what with the humidity and mosquitos.

    FWIW, I'm more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it's easier to zoom off to the 'burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain't doing a city any good.

    Replies: @bjdubbs, @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer, @Another Canadian, @Anonymous

    It’s an elevated highway so it doesn’t impede pedestrian traffic, it’s just an eyesore. The L in Chicago bisects plenty of neighborhoods that are perfectly healthy.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @bjdubbs

    There's usually like a half block linear slum alongside the L tracks, although by the later 1980s they were building fancy new condos right next to the L in Lincoln Park.

    Replies: @anonymous

    , @Mike Zwick
    @bjdubbs

    The expressways get blamed for segregation in Chicago as well. They always say that the Dan Ryan was built to keep the blacks out of Bridgeport but the tracks of the New York central and the Nickel Plate Railroads were dividing the neighborhoods long before the Day Ryan was ever built.

  54. @bjdubbs
    @Paleo Retiree

    It's an elevated highway so it doesn't impede pedestrian traffic, it's just an eyesore. The L in Chicago bisects plenty of neighborhoods that are perfectly healthy.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Mike Zwick

    There’s usually like a half block linear slum alongside the L tracks, although by the later 1980s they were building fancy new condos right next to the L in Lincoln Park.

    • Replies: @anonymous
    @Steve Sailer


    There’s usually like a half block linear slum alongside the L tracks, although by the later 1980s they were building fancy new condos right next to the L in Lincoln Park.
     
    Reminds me of the movie 'Blues Brothers' where they were living right next to the L tracks. Obviously not a desirable place to live if one has any choices. Now there's actually condos next to the tracks in some areas; people pay money to listen to the noise.
  55. @Paleo Retiree
    Back when it was home to Kodak, Bausch & Lomb and Xerox, Rochester was (if in a small way) the Silicon Valley of its time.

    The Finger Lakes area is beautiful. Tons of small towns ready to be discovered and turned into cute, picture-perfect places, and lots of land and houses ready to be bought for a song. Wineries, vistas, farms, and an up-and-coming upscale food culture. Plus: Ithaca, a great little college town, as well, for culture, quick access to Syracuse and Rochester, and fairly easy access to NYC. OK, winters are brutal, and summers aren't much fun either, what with the humidity and mosquitos.

    FWIW, I'm more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it's easier to zoom off to the 'burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain't doing a city any good.

    Replies: @bjdubbs, @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer, @Another Canadian, @Anonymous

    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels — Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin — of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.

    • Replies: @Pat Gilligan
    @Steve Sailer


    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels — Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin — of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.
     
    Are you really expecting people to believe that you remembered and recognized landscape described in a novel?? This is the most bizarre thing I've ever heard. While I haven't read a novel since high school, it would seem that when we read we form scenes in our minds that are drawn from actual, familiar places or at least the constituent parts are.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer

  56. @Paleo Retiree
    Back when it was home to Kodak, Bausch & Lomb and Xerox, Rochester was (if in a small way) the Silicon Valley of its time.

    The Finger Lakes area is beautiful. Tons of small towns ready to be discovered and turned into cute, picture-perfect places, and lots of land and houses ready to be bought for a song. Wineries, vistas, farms, and an up-and-coming upscale food culture. Plus: Ithaca, a great little college town, as well, for culture, quick access to Syracuse and Rochester, and fairly easy access to NYC. OK, winters are brutal, and summers aren't much fun either, what with the humidity and mosquitos.

    FWIW, I'm more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it's easier to zoom off to the 'burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain't doing a city any good.

    Replies: @bjdubbs, @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer, @Another Canadian, @Anonymous

    “FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good.”

    That’s an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it’s not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    • Replies: @Fool
    @Steve Sailer

    Someone who used to run a charter school in DC told me students would end up robbed or raped in the tunnel beneath the freeway. It was a specific hazard.

    , @Jerry
    @Steve Sailer

    The El in Chicago is such a depressing disgrace. In Asia the pillars would be made of concrete, and the ride fast and smooth and whisper-silent. The incredible noise that it makes in the downtown Loop, as the sound is bounced around in the skyscraper canyons, has always made me think that in Chicago less sensitive means better--indeed, this insensate attitude was a point of local pride...

    , @Anonymous
    @Steve Sailer

    I grew up in a suburban house near the freeway. I lived in Manhattan for several years, and every time I would go back home for holidays and the like and spend the night, the extreme silence cat night compared to Manhattan was overwhelming. You get used to the constant din of Manhattan that even a relatively busy suburb can seem eerily quiet at night when you're lying in bed.

    , @stillCARealist
    @Steve Sailer

    A huge freeway goes right through the heart of the San Ramon Valley in No Cal where I grew up. On one side is most of the population, living in tree-filled suburban neighborhoods. On the other side are gazillion dollar mansions staring right down on the freeway from barren hillsides. In fact, I'd say this set-up is downright common in No Cal. Nobody even notices freeways anymore.

    I know it sounds mean, but crummy neighborhoods are filled with crummy people.

    , @myb6
    @Steve Sailer

    Your examples (Syracuse vs San Fernando Valley) illustrate the key distinction: whether the area was built pre- or post-auto. Building freeways through the hearts of pre-auto urbs was indeed incredibly destructive. Research has shown that property values are depressed for blocks on either side. The freeways themselves take up much more real estate than rail, so required a lot more demolition and had stronger effects on walk-sheds. The pre-auto neighborhoods also weren't designed to mitigate any of the freeway's environmental effects, nor to accommodate the extra traffic and parking demand. Cities then responded by expanding road and parking space, but that just further cut the density-of-use those neighborhoods were built for and depended on.

    Post-war development was built with the freeway in mind, and so generally occurred with at least a strip of trees or walls blocking the noise, more arterial roadspace, plenty of parking, and low density and architecture to match. So the freeway's mobility benefits remain while the costs are considerably mitigated. My only real beef with these greenfield freeways is that they should have funded themselves by tolls and assessments on the benefiting property.

    Readers here who are interested in the topic should really check out StrongTowns.org. It was started by a rural Minnesota civil engineer and the value-system is more about proper function and financial sustainability, in contrast to an urbanism sphere which is otherwise heavily-SJW.

  57. @jacobsson
    A combination of this blog and some other media makes me long to experience 1950-60s Southern California.

    It's odd to feel a sort of nostalgia for something I've never experienced and for a time I wasn't alive. But it must have been a glorious place.

    What's so sad is that it really only lasted for a such a small period of time.

    Replies: @Discard, @Leftist conservative

    It was certainly glorious compared to today’s SoCal, but back then, it was just normal to we who knew no other way of life. Good schools, honest cops, cheap cars and cheap gas, Mexicans named John or Kim instead of Juan or Maria, jobs for the asking and beautiful weather (excepting the smog) 300 days a year, can spoil you for the rest of your life.

  58. @Buzz Mohawk
    BTW, Upstate New York is a good place to buy a farm and retire.

    I know several people who have done it. One guy left Wall Street around age 40 and did it. Another couple bought a dairy farm and are making boutique cheese. An older business owner got tired of how obnoxious people were becoming in the New York City megalopolis, said aw fuck it, and did it.

    Good land and agriculture are the often forgotten parts of New York.

    You can buy a lot of acreage for reasonable money, and the neighbors are all...shall we say... nice American types of people. Conservative even! Sharp and well educated in many instances.

    Everything depends on your perspective.

    Replies: @Hhsiii, @Another Canadian, @Dr. X

    Oh yeah, the wife loves to look at farmhouses upstate. Although she says too cold for her to retire there. She insists on California for that. I keep referring her to iSteve when she brings that up.

    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
    @Hhsiii

    Hhsiii, My wife and I and another couple do day trips to the Finger Lake Region, absolutely breathtaking in the fall. The Thruway, I-90, in NY takes a straight level route East to West, but dropping off at any of a number of exits shows a little known side to NY. Corning, Ithaca, Seneca Falls, Canandaigua, Hammondsport... a couple of hours tops for us.

  59. @2Mintzin1
    Interesting topic. There are lots of black people in Syracuse today who believe that the raised highway was deliberately installed to split up black neighborhoods, and thus dilute the black vote. That kind of silly paranoid non– analysis is almost not worth refuting. The fact is that the I – 81 elevated highway permits a lot of truck and vacationing automobile traffic to move between Pennsylvania/downstate New York and points upstate without encountering a traffic light.

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with... A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
    Jesus wept.

    This is such a dumb idea, I'm not even sure how to argue against it.

    Look, when you get down to it, New York state really doesn't want to pay to replace the elevated highway, it is expensive. And Syracuse, despite its reliably Dem leadership, does not have the political pull that it had that it back in the 1960s.

    The only hope Syracuse has is that Cuomo II can be convinced to lay some state money on it, as he recently did for Buffalo.

    Replies: @Ed, @AndrewR, @Another Canadian, @Buffalo Joe, @Muse

    If recent weeks have shown anything it’s that committed groups of angry blacks can punch well above their weight. Granted most of it has been in the playpen of academia, but I wonder what would happen if a few dozen blacks tried to occupy Cuomo’s office. Heavy handed tactics to remove the “protesters” would make for bad optics in today’s SJWified political arena.

    • Replies: @Olorin
    @AndrewR

    Actually, it's not about black "commitment," but MSM magnification.

    And it's not THEIR weight.

  60. Now the mayor of Syracuse is loading up the South side with welfarees, clearly a far sighted growth agenda. Some beautiful houses from a bygone era though.

  61. @2Mintzin1
    Interesting topic. There are lots of black people in Syracuse today who believe that the raised highway was deliberately installed to split up black neighborhoods, and thus dilute the black vote. That kind of silly paranoid non– analysis is almost not worth refuting. The fact is that the I – 81 elevated highway permits a lot of truck and vacationing automobile traffic to move between Pennsylvania/downstate New York and points upstate without encountering a traffic light.

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with... A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
    Jesus wept.

    This is such a dumb idea, I'm not even sure how to argue against it.

    Look, when you get down to it, New York state really doesn't want to pay to replace the elevated highway, it is expensive. And Syracuse, despite its reliably Dem leadership, does not have the political pull that it had that it back in the 1960s.

    The only hope Syracuse has is that Cuomo II can be convinced to lay some state money on it, as he recently did for Buffalo.

    Replies: @Ed, @AndrewR, @Another Canadian, @Buffalo Joe, @Muse

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with… A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!

    Is this similar to the kerfuffle in Buffalo about turning the evil Scajaquada Expressway into some neo-Frederick-Law-Olmstead pedestrian-friendly roadway? I think part of the push behind turning freeways into parkways is baby boomers retiring. When they don’t need to commute anymore, they push to dismantle much of the unsightly commuting infrastructure. Toronto is having the same battle right now with the elevated Gardiner Expressway, wanting to replace it with a tree-lined boulevard.

  62. @Buzz Mohawk
    BTW, Upstate New York is a good place to buy a farm and retire.

    I know several people who have done it. One guy left Wall Street around age 40 and did it. Another couple bought a dairy farm and are making boutique cheese. An older business owner got tired of how obnoxious people were becoming in the New York City megalopolis, said aw fuck it, and did it.

    Good land and agriculture are the often forgotten parts of New York.

    You can buy a lot of acreage for reasonable money, and the neighbors are all...shall we say... nice American types of people. Conservative even! Sharp and well educated in many instances.

    Everything depends on your perspective.

    Replies: @Hhsiii, @Another Canadian, @Dr. X

    BTW, Upstate New York is a good place to buy a farm and retire.

    Your name must be James Howard Kunstler. Hey there, Jimmy.

  63. @Paleo Retiree
    Back when it was home to Kodak, Bausch & Lomb and Xerox, Rochester was (if in a small way) the Silicon Valley of its time.

    The Finger Lakes area is beautiful. Tons of small towns ready to be discovered and turned into cute, picture-perfect places, and lots of land and houses ready to be bought for a song. Wineries, vistas, farms, and an up-and-coming upscale food culture. Plus: Ithaca, a great little college town, as well, for culture, quick access to Syracuse and Rochester, and fairly easy access to NYC. OK, winters are brutal, and summers aren't much fun either, what with the humidity and mosquitos.

    FWIW, I'm more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it's easier to zoom off to the 'burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain't doing a city any good.

    Replies: @bjdubbs, @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer, @Another Canadian, @Anonymous

    My son and I were at an AAU basketball tournament in Syracuse a few years ago and stayed in Auburn. There was this drive-in restaurant overlooking the lake that must have been from the 1950s. We all loved it; it was like going back in time. The Finger Lakes is one of America’s high quality of life and low cost regions.

    • Replies: @Anon87
    @Another Canadian

    Shhh, please stop talking about it or else we will never be able to afford it. Bad enough people like Cher and Alec Baldwin are in the know.

    Replies: @2Mintzin1

  64. @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    "FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good."

    That's an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it's not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    Replies: @Fool, @Jerry, @Anonymous, @stillCARealist, @myb6

    Someone who used to run a charter school in DC told me students would end up robbed or raped in the tunnel beneath the freeway. It was a specific hazard.

  65. Are Americans really more historically illiterate than when you were younger or does it just seem that way the more you learn about history? When you were 20 Americans probably seemed to know more about history because you knew less about history back then.

  66. Leftist conservative [AKA "radical_centrist"] says: • Website
    @jacobsson
    A combination of this blog and some other media makes me long to experience 1950-60s Southern California.

    It's odd to feel a sort of nostalgia for something I've never experienced and for a time I wasn't alive. But it must have been a glorious place.

    What's so sad is that it really only lasted for a such a small period of time.

    Replies: @Discard, @Leftist conservative

    A combination of this blog and some other media makes me long to experience 1950-60s Southern California.

    It’s odd to feel a sort of nostalgia for something I’ve never experienced and for a time I wasn’t alive. But it must have been a glorious place.

    What’s so sad is that it really only lasted for a such a small period of time

    As a child I visted disneyland in the mid 1960s…that famous googie architecture was everywhere in socal…it was indeed like a fantasy land.

  67. @Dave Pinsen
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Some used to blame another section of I-95 - the Cross Bronx Expressway - for ruining that part of the Bronx.

    Replies: @Buzz Mohawk, @prosa123

    One look* at the Cross-Bronx makes it clear why its construction did not “destroy” any neighborhoods. It runs through a trench that is much narrower than you ever would expect for a major thoroughfare, which kept the number of condemned properties to an absolute minimum. As there are overpasses every few blocks, the two sections of bisected neighborhoods are scarcely isolated from one another. Getting from one side to the other is a very minor inconvenience.
    * = even when driving there’s plenty of time to look given the comically slow traffic on the Cross-Bronx.

    Peter

  68. @cthulhu
    @Ron Unz

    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I'm more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie. Of course, there are only a handful of movies that I care to see in a given year, so I can afford to splurge when I go see one.

    Replies: @Ron Unz, @Mr. Anon

    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I’m more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie.

    Well, a few of the local theaters around here have switched over to those large reclining chairs, with assigned seats, both of which seem very inconvenient and annoy me, and some of the individual screening rooms are pretty small. In all my years living here, I’m not sure I’ve ever encountered any “teenage louts” at a theater, so maybe people in Northern CA are just better behaved. The big 16-screen multiplex is in Mountain View, just next to Google, and they only charge about $12, which still seems ridiculously expensive to me—$16 is just nuts.

    Fortunately, there’s the local Stanford Theater, saved by one of the HP Packards over 20 years ago, which shows classic double feature films for $7, $4.50 for matinees, along with $1.50 popcorn and $1.50 sodas. It’s always packed, and probably one of the most cost-effective non-profit investments I’ve ever come across.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    @Ron Unz


    Well, a few of the local theaters around here have switched over to those large reclining chairs, with assigned seats, both of which seem very inconvenient and annoy me
     
    These dine-in theaters are the trend around the country. I always feel awkward bringing in concession stand food when they have waiters in there who expect you to order food from them.
  69. @bjdubbs
    @Paleo Retiree

    It's an elevated highway so it doesn't impede pedestrian traffic, it's just an eyesore. The L in Chicago bisects plenty of neighborhoods that are perfectly healthy.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Mike Zwick

    The expressways get blamed for segregation in Chicago as well. They always say that the Dan Ryan was built to keep the blacks out of Bridgeport but the tracks of the New York central and the Nickel Plate Railroads were dividing the neighborhoods long before the Day Ryan was ever built.

  70. “But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer. Cheap houses and generous welfare programs keep people around.”

    The decline of the Rust Belt didn’t happen until the 50’s or 60’s. White flight and companies moving out for cheaper labor in the south, and later overseas, took its toll. Upstate NY cities are still viable, and industry could thrive there, but then again it could in Gary, Indiana and East St. Louis, Illinois. There would be too much red tape and infrastructure would have to be rebuilt. It is just easier to throw up a tilt up style building outside of Dallas or Shanghai.

  71. As someone who grew up in Rochester in the 70’s and 80’s, I can attest to how dynamic, for a small city, Rochester was when Kodak and Xerox and Bausch and Lomb were in full swing.
    Tens of thousands of Rochesterians would get their Christmas bonuses and buy new cars or build a new addition on the house.
    Now that Kodak and Xerox are effectively gone, the city has taken a huge downturn. It looks and feels very depressed.The downtown area is being deconstructed, including Midtown Plaza, the first indoor mall of it’s size in the Northeast. Now it’s just a rubble strewn lot.Rochester competes with Buffalo as having the highest per capita murder rate in the state. The 2 largest employers are the University of Rochester and Wegmans.
    The middle class is disappearing, as it is everywhere in the U.S. People who could afford to leave, did. The population that’s left is not very endearing. Dull and monotonous. The old ethnic neighborhoods that I grew up in are gone, replaced by ghettoish blight.
    So goes America.

  72. @Ed
    @2Mintzin1

    Just about every city with a majority or near majority black population has some version of "The Plan". It's what blacks claim whites are doing to usurp blacks rightful place in the city.

    It's really big in DC among blacks.

    Replies: @Hrw-500

    Was it really big as well in Detroit? The former area known as Black Bottom was claimed by I-375 but also with urban renewal projects.
    http://detroithistorical.org/learn/encyclopedia-of-detroit/black-bottom-neighborhood
    http://www.motorcities.org/Story/Detroits+Black+Bottom+and+Paradise+Valley-37.html
    http://www.detroits-great-rebellion.com/Urban-Renewal.html

    One poster on City-data forum nicknamed 313Weather said about the plowing of Poletown:

    Long story short, it was Coleman Young’s “revenge” for the plowing down of Hastings Street/Black Bottom to build I-75.

  73. @cthulhu
    @Ron Unz

    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I'm more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie. Of course, there are only a handful of movies that I care to see in a given year, so I can afford to splurge when I go see one.

    Replies: @Ron Unz, @Mr. Anon

    One way of avoiding teenage louts at the movie theatre is to see movies intended for adults. Yeah, I know, there are not many of them. Actually a lot of adults can be just as bad. I went to see “Bridge of Spies” a few weeks ago, and I was surrounded by middle-aged-to-older people explaining the movie to one another.

  74. I remember how I-280 in Northern California turned Woodside and Los Altos Hills into ghettos.

    • Replies: @Shaq
    @Mr. Anon

    @Mr. Anon, I was hoping for a 280 reference. Lord knows those venture firms on the Sand Hill Road exit turned the neighborhood into a dump.

    , @Capn Mike
    @Mr. Anon

    Yeah, I volunteer at a soup kitchen in Woodside. Tragic.

  75. @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    "FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good."

    That's an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it's not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    Replies: @Fool, @Jerry, @Anonymous, @stillCARealist, @myb6

    The El in Chicago is such a depressing disgrace. In Asia the pillars would be made of concrete, and the ride fast and smooth and whisper-silent. The incredible noise that it makes in the downtown Loop, as the sound is bounced around in the skyscraper canyons, has always made me think that in Chicago less sensitive means better–indeed, this insensate attitude was a point of local pride…

  76. I think the Vikings landing in Newfoundland has a lot to do with the current problems in Syracuse. They only stayed a few years, then left…and the white flight craze in the Northeast has been growing ever since.

  77. @Anonymous

    But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer. Cheap houses and generous welfare programs keep people around.
     
    Wasn't Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    I had no idea there were blacks in Syracuse, other than the Orangemen basketball team. Then again, I was surprised to learn from you that there are blacks in Wisconsin. Doesn't upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Jefferson, @Reg Cæsar

    Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?

    Buffalo gets the all-the-snow-at-once blizzards off the (other) lake. But Syracuse gets 50% more snow over the winter. It’s just more steady.

    Syracuse is the snowiest city in the lower 48, and ties with Juneau, Alaska. Though UP villages where only Finns are crazy enough to live get 50% more snow than Syracuse.

    By the way, in 1956 Syracuse had an NBA team, as did Rochester. They’re in Philadelphia and Sacramento now.

    • Replies: @EriK
    @Reg Cæsar

    And the Buffalo Braves are now the Clippers.

    , @Rapparee
    @Reg Cæsar

    Syracuse is a good example of the way local territorialism latches on to college ball, as Steve described in a recent article. Lacking nationally-prominent pro teams (few outside NY have ever heard of the Chiefs or The Crunch), Syracusians use the SU Orangemen as the main outlet for their athletic loyalties- even those who have never had a family member attend the school. Those college "amateurs" are essentially the nationally-competitive pro team for a city that doesn't really have one.

  78. WhatEvvs [AKA "Internet Addict"] says:
    @WhatEvvs
    How to decimate a city? Dunno. 16 people just shot in NoLa. Gunfire "erupted." Like lava from a volcano. Teens. Kids these days.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @WhatEvvs, @Federalist

    There’s a litany of journalistic weasel words and phrases whose purpose is to conceal the truth. Larry Auster sensitized me to this. Tragedy….senseless…random….

  79. @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    And Bausch & Lomb, and General Electric, which spawned NBC radio. IBM did its work in Broome County.

    I believe RPI in Troy was the first engineering school in the land. It was parodied in a Kurt Vonnegut novel.

  80. WhatEvvs [AKA "Internet Addict"] says:

    @Bill, the above was directed to you.

  81. anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer
    @bjdubbs

    There's usually like a half block linear slum alongside the L tracks, although by the later 1980s they were building fancy new condos right next to the L in Lincoln Park.

    Replies: @anonymous

    There’s usually like a half block linear slum alongside the L tracks, although by the later 1980s they were building fancy new condos right next to the L in Lincoln Park.

    Reminds me of the movie ‘Blues Brothers’ where they were living right next to the L tracks. Obviously not a desirable place to live if one has any choices. Now there’s actually condos next to the tracks in some areas; people pay money to listen to the noise.

  82. @Leftist conservative
    With the liberal political tribe, the boogeyman that is ultimately responsible for all evil is white racism....

    With the conservative political tribe, it's welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash--welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent. Oh, yeah, food stamps. But if you think foodstamps are what keep people in upstate new york, well, then you must be a member of a certain political religion....

    Replies: @another commenter, @bomag, @WRB, @AnotherDad, @Herr Niemand

    Newsflash–welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.

    In the case of men, welfare is often concealed as bogus disability.

  83. The vast majority of Syracuse’s left-leaning professoriate lives in the suburbs, which are quite nice. The leftest of all my profs there lived on an expansive farm in a rural area about 20 miles south of the city. She loved to bemoan white flight.

  84. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    "FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good."

    That's an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it's not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    Replies: @Fool, @Jerry, @Anonymous, @stillCARealist, @myb6

    I grew up in a suburban house near the freeway. I lived in Manhattan for several years, and every time I would go back home for holidays and the like and spend the night, the extreme silence cat night compared to Manhattan was overwhelming. You get used to the constant din of Manhattan that even a relatively busy suburb can seem eerily quiet at night when you’re lying in bed.

  85. @Paleo Retiree
    Back when it was home to Kodak, Bausch & Lomb and Xerox, Rochester was (if in a small way) the Silicon Valley of its time.

    The Finger Lakes area is beautiful. Tons of small towns ready to be discovered and turned into cute, picture-perfect places, and lots of land and houses ready to be bought for a song. Wineries, vistas, farms, and an up-and-coming upscale food culture. Plus: Ithaca, a great little college town, as well, for culture, quick access to Syracuse and Rochester, and fairly easy access to NYC. OK, winters are brutal, and summers aren't much fun either, what with the humidity and mosquitos.

    FWIW, I'm more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it's easier to zoom off to the 'burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain't doing a city any good.

    Replies: @bjdubbs, @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer, @Another Canadian, @Anonymous

    That’s true, but on the other hand, people can be very adaptable, and if people have few options but to walk between city neighborhoods, they can just get used to things like people emptying chamber pots out of windows and on the streets and horseshit being everywhere.

  86. @TomSchmidt
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Think of a small business and its walk shed. Now, cut it in half, and remove 10,000 people to build a road through. Neighborhoods were utterly devastated by the road; they were mostly white in the 50s when they built it, and then became so undesireable (and businesses unsustainable) that only blacks and Hispanics would live there.

    Sometimes, it IS the road.

    Replies: @Buzz Mohawk

    I understand what you are saying, but explain to me this: Why didn’t the same highway system, right next door, destroy one of the richest counties in the Untited States, Fairfield CT ???

    I-95 was pushed right through Fairfield County and its towns, yet people are still outbidding each other to live there.

    If you read this comment on this stale thread, and if I look back and see it, I will tell you what my father, a died-in-the-wool Westerner descended from people who went from the Northeast to California during the Gold Rush, a man who reluctantly had to do business on the East Coast (like me), taught me about New Yorkers…

  87. @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    "FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good."

    That's an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it's not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    Replies: @Fool, @Jerry, @Anonymous, @stillCARealist, @myb6

    A huge freeway goes right through the heart of the San Ramon Valley in No Cal where I grew up. On one side is most of the population, living in tree-filled suburban neighborhoods. On the other side are gazillion dollar mansions staring right down on the freeway from barren hillsides. In fact, I’d say this set-up is downright common in No Cal. Nobody even notices freeways anymore.

    I know it sounds mean, but crummy neighborhoods are filled with crummy people.

  88. I grew up in Syracuse, and while the city has turned into a dump, the issue that drives people out of the city and the state–not just flight to the suburbs–is the tax burden. High sales taxes, high property taxes, high income taxes due to spending polices driven by NYC/downstate agenda.

    The employment base has left, and with it the tax base. General Electric (Electronics Park) was once the largest employer with around 12,000 employees at the end of the Vietnam war. General Motors, Chrysler, Carrier (with HQ), and Bristol Myers had huge mfg operations–all gone. (And none were actually located in the city, except Carrier’s HQ built downtown in the ’60s when the now-blamed interstate highways made the commute convenient.) The mfg operations all generated significant employment for regional suppliers. Electronics Park is now part of Lockheed Martin with 2,200 employees.

    Now the largest employers are SUNY’s Upstate Medical University and Syracuse University–two tax-exempt institutions–located adjacent to the derided I-81.

    People have forgotten how long the this downward spiral has been trending, as the decision to replace an elevated highway causes people to revisit and revise history. Here’s a clue: In November 1994, an unknown state senator named George Pataki defeated incumbent governor Mario Cuomo’s quest for a fourth term. (Cuomo was the World’s Greatest Orator title-holder, prior to the present WH occupant.) Formerly Democratic majorities upstate in Erie (Buffalo), Monroe (Rochester), Onondaga (Syracuse), and Oneida (Utica) counties flipped to the Republican by large margins. Upstate never recovered from Cuomo’s tax and spend devastation.

    Obviously, there’s more to the story than I’ve outlined–but the question of the replacement for the elevated highway has caused a lot of nonsense revisionism to surface, making the highway the bogeyman for lots of political policy error. It’s just easier to blame nameless, faceless people from an earlier era, than to face the failures of the present for a clue about how to proceed.

    • Replies: @Forbes
    @Forbes

    Importantly worth noting is the population of Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse has declined by 40% since 1960--much of it in the following 30 years--all while the US as a whole grew by ~80%. So the entrenched problems of the evaporating tax base and concentrated dysfunction have been in place for at least a generation. Thus making an elevated highway a bogeyman in the revisionist history all the more appealing.

    , @AnonAnon
    @Forbes

    This, 1000%. High taxes - the highest in the US - and crap management by Democrats. I grew up in upstate NY, outside nearby Utica, and am a Syracuse grad. My father's family are all from Syracuse and some still live there. My parents were forever bitching about the tax burden and how upstate got screwed by downstate/NYC. My dad worked 30+ years at the Utica General Electric but took early retirement when they were winding down the plant for closure and has since left the state for the southwest. My siblings and I left as soon as we graduated college and are now all out west. I'm shocked how much Utica's population has declined since I was born - from 100K to 60K, though it was always a shithole. Syracuse's population has decline 30,000 since when I was there for college, though the college has added a ton of buildings. However, the nice suburb I grew up in has actually gained a little in population. It was never a growth area but it was a decent place, if very boring, to grow up as a kid. The endless gray days - 63 sunny days - right up there with the Pacific Northwest - not to mention the long and snowy winters are pretty brutal on the spirit. I would never move back.

    Replies: @Clyde

  89. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    Given what blacks have done to cities, it’s understandable why Americans have been more okay with immigration.

    If I had to choose between ‘Syrian refugees’ and blacks, I’d go with the former.

    If I had to choose between Mexican illegals and blacks, again I’d go with the former.

    This is why European immigration policy makes no sense.
    In the US, immigrants at least serve as buffers and middlemen between whites(at least affluent ones) and blacks.
    In Europe, they are bringing in all these blacks who are nothing but trouble.

    This is, of course, one reason why Europeans got so excited about relatively lighter-skinned ‘Syrian Refugees’. Better them than the less modern other Muslims and black Africans.

    At any rate, the problem was never immigration but color of immigration.

    After all, Israel is for Jewish immigration and has no problem with it. More Jews means more power to Jews in Israel. What’s not to like.

    Suppose there are Anglo ‘expats’ all over the world and they want to re-emigrate to the UK. Why should any white Briton oppose such an home-coming immigration?
    It would keep UK white and British, and it would mean more Anglo folks in Britain.

    In contrast, letting in tons of non-British and non-white immigrants would mean Britain becoming less British and becoming invaded by another people.

    Suppose there is a worldwide Kenyan diaspora. Suppose all these Kenyans around the world want to immigrate back to Kenya. Should Kenya oppose it? No. It would be Kenyans coming to Kenya, like Jews going to Jewish Israel.

    It’s all about race. Immigration is okay or not okay depending on who is immigrating.

    If your own kind is immigrating back to your country, it strengthens your nation and race.
    If another kind is immigrating your country, it weakens your hold on your own country.

    Jews know this, which is why they are for ONLY JEWISH immigration to Israel. But they want to weaken white gentile countries, so they say European nations must take in all these Muslims.

    PS. Could it be that one of the reasons why Jews want European nations to take in Muslims is precisely because European nations will have problems with Muslims? That could make the Europeans sympathize more with Jews in Israel: ‘We Europeans have problems with Muslims just like Jews do in Israel.’

    Of course, there is the danger that white Europeans might side with Muslims and pander to them and become more hostile to Zionism. Both tendencies can be seen in UK and France.

    But even European rightists who don’t like Muslims and may sympathize with Zionist problems with Muslims surely wonder sometimes: “It was the Jewish elites who led the way in urging us to take in all these Muslims.”

  90. @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    "FWIW, I’m more sympathetic than most here are to the notion that freeways did a lot of damage to a lot of American cities. When it’s easier to zoom off to the ‘burbs than it is to walk from one downtown neighborhood to the next one over, that ain’t doing a city any good."

    That's an interesting opportunity cost analysis.

    I was thinking more in terms of noise and blank distance. It would be interesting to compare the effect of wide but not too loud freeways versus narrow but loud elevated subways like in Chicago or some places in New York.

    I live a few blocks from a freeway. The noise is pretty minimal white noise at this distance. The side of the street up against the freeway is a bit slummy, but it's not enough to take down the rest of the neighborhood.

    Replies: @Fool, @Jerry, @Anonymous, @stillCARealist, @myb6

    Your examples (Syracuse vs San Fernando Valley) illustrate the key distinction: whether the area was built pre- or post-auto. Building freeways through the hearts of pre-auto urbs was indeed incredibly destructive. Research has shown that property values are depressed for blocks on either side. The freeways themselves take up much more real estate than rail, so required a lot more demolition and had stronger effects on walk-sheds. The pre-auto neighborhoods also weren’t designed to mitigate any of the freeway’s environmental effects, nor to accommodate the extra traffic and parking demand. Cities then responded by expanding road and parking space, but that just further cut the density-of-use those neighborhoods were built for and depended on.

    Post-war development was built with the freeway in mind, and so generally occurred with at least a strip of trees or walls blocking the noise, more arterial roadspace, plenty of parking, and low density and architecture to match. So the freeway’s mobility benefits remain while the costs are considerably mitigated. My only real beef with these greenfield freeways is that they should have funded themselves by tolls and assessments on the benefiting property.

    Readers here who are interested in the topic should really check out StrongTowns.org. It was started by a rural Minnesota civil engineer and the value-system is more about proper function and financial sustainability, in contrast to an urbanism sphere which is otherwise heavily-SJW.

  91. @Reg Cæsar
    @Anonymous


    Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?
     
    Buffalo gets the all-the-snow-at-once blizzards off the (other) lake. But Syracuse gets 50% more snow over the winter. It's just more steady.

    Syracuse is the snowiest city in the lower 48, and ties with Juneau, Alaska. Though UP villages where only Finns are crazy enough to live get 50% more snow than Syracuse.

    By the way, in 1956 Syracuse had an NBA team, as did Rochester. They're in Philadelphia and Sacramento now.

    Replies: @EriK, @Rapparee

    And the Buffalo Braves are now the Clippers.

  92. It’s not the first wave of abandonment to hit upstate New York ( can you have a wave of an absence of something?)
    Twenty years ago I had a cabin in the woods 20 odd outside of Hudson New York, a few miles away from where New York, Massachusetts and Connecticut all met. The woods were all second growth timber, like pretty much all of the north east the old growth timber was gone by 1900. On the thirty five acres or so there were no fewer than three old stone foundations for farmhouses that had been abandoned. As you’ve got to have some where to park any stone you plowed up, the land itself was crisscrossed with beautiful dry-stone walls ( though a bit sloppy to an English eye) and anything more than the most superficial excavation turns up as much rock as dirt. Cue Ad : http://www.rockanddirt.com/

    As soon as the Mid-West was opened up the hardscrabble farmers were on the next wagon train out to till the 10 feet deep stone free loam that the glaciers had so thoughtfully stolen from Canada. Rocky dirt in New York was better than no dirt in Europe but lost out to the real magic dirt 1,000 mile West.

  93. @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    Mark Twain, author of “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” – did you not think that we knew who Mark Twain was?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @anon

    I was hoping you'd be familiar with Twain's description of the character of the Connecticut Yankee, which is relevant to understanding the 19th Century prosperity of Upstate New York.

  94. @WhatEvvs
    How to decimate a city? Dunno. 16 people just shot in NoLa. Gunfire "erupted." Like lava from a volcano. Teens. Kids these days.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @WhatEvvs, @Federalist

    And the big issue in New Orleans right now is taking down the statues of Robert E. Lee and P.G.T. Beauregard. Maybe the gunfire “erupted” from a Confederate cavalry raid.

  95. @Leftist conservative
    With the liberal political tribe, the boogeyman that is ultimately responsible for all evil is white racism....

    With the conservative political tribe, it's welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash--welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent. Oh, yeah, food stamps. But if you think foodstamps are what keep people in upstate new york, well, then you must be a member of a certain political religion....

    Replies: @another commenter, @bomag, @WRB, @AnotherDad, @Herr Niemand

    With the conservative political tribe, it’s welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash–welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.

    But unlike “white racism”, welfare really has been and *continues* to be a destructive.

    The conversion of welfare from a widows and orphans program, to a subsidy that allows women who can not get or keep a husband to have children, and then to essentially legitimate that family structure has indeed been a disaster. It is a *real* boogeyman.

    And yeah, it’s been a particular disaster for blacks. Blacks always had much much higher illegitimacy–Africa\HBD. But when i was a kid, they were at least mimicking white family structure\norms.

    Now, if you think white fertility demographics look bad, you should see them for blacks. Smart college educated black women have terrible fertility. The educated, successful black men they hypergamously need don’t exist in sufficient quantity and can, and do, often find white women. The net between this and inter-generational welfare, American blacks are actually getting dumber. (The only caveat is the inflow of white genes from more race mixing. Too complicated to calculate how it all shakes out.)

    ~~~
    What’s needed is a eugenic welfare program. The cost of welfare is sterilization. If you’re too incompetent to organize your life–fine, we won’t let you starve. But that also means you’re too incompetent to be having children.

    • Replies: @ben tillman
    @AnotherDad


    Now, if you think white fertility demographics look bad, you should see them for blacks. Smart college educated black women have terrible fertility. The educated, successful black men they hypergamously need don’t exist in sufficient quantity and can, and do, often find white women.
     
    Warning: Anecdote Alert!

    When I tutored in a Black high school, my smartest male pupil (the starting point guard), declared he would be opting for a vasectomy. Didn't want the cost and hassles of kids.
  96. @Forbes
    I grew up in Syracuse, and while the city has turned into a dump, the issue that drives people out of the city and the state--not just flight to the suburbs--is the tax burden. High sales taxes, high property taxes, high income taxes due to spending polices driven by NYC/downstate agenda.

    The employment base has left, and with it the tax base. General Electric (Electronics Park) was once the largest employer with around 12,000 employees at the end of the Vietnam war. General Motors, Chrysler, Carrier (with HQ), and Bristol Myers had huge mfg operations--all gone. (And none were actually located in the city, except Carrier's HQ built downtown in the '60s when the now-blamed interstate highways made the commute convenient.) The mfg operations all generated significant employment for regional suppliers. Electronics Park is now part of Lockheed Martin with 2,200 employees.

    Now the largest employers are SUNY's Upstate Medical University and Syracuse University--two tax-exempt institutions--located adjacent to the derided I-81.

    People have forgotten how long the this downward spiral has been trending, as the decision to replace an elevated highway causes people to revisit and revise history. Here's a clue: In November 1994, an unknown state senator named George Pataki defeated incumbent governor Mario Cuomo's quest for a fourth term. (Cuomo was the World's Greatest Orator title-holder, prior to the present WH occupant.) Formerly Democratic majorities upstate in Erie (Buffalo), Monroe (Rochester), Onondaga (Syracuse), and Oneida (Utica) counties flipped to the Republican by large margins. Upstate never recovered from Cuomo's tax and spend devastation.

    Obviously, there's more to the story than I've outlined--but the question of the replacement for the elevated highway has caused a lot of nonsense revisionism to surface, making the highway the bogeyman for lots of political policy error. It's just easier to blame nameless, faceless people from an earlier era, than to face the failures of the present for a clue about how to proceed.

    Replies: @Forbes, @AnonAnon

    Importantly worth noting is the population of Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse has declined by 40% since 1960–much of it in the following 30 years–all while the US as a whole grew by ~80%. So the entrenched problems of the evaporating tax base and concentrated dysfunction have been in place for at least a generation. Thus making an elevated highway a bogeyman in the revisionist history all the more appealing.

  97. @anon
    @Steve Sailer

    Mark Twain, author of “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” - did you not think that we knew who Mark Twain was?

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    I was hoping you’d be familiar with Twain’s description of the character of the Connecticut Yankee, which is relevant to understanding the 19th Century prosperity of Upstate New York.

  98. @AnotherDad
    @Leftist conservative


    With the conservative political tribe, it’s welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash–welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent.
     
    But unlike "white racism", welfare really has been and *continues* to be a destructive.

    The conversion of welfare from a widows and orphans program, to a subsidy that allows women who can not get or keep a husband to have children, and then to essentially legitimate that family structure has indeed been a disaster. It is a *real* boogeyman.

    And yeah, it's been a particular disaster for blacks. Blacks always had much much higher illegitimacy--Africa\HBD. But when i was a kid, they were at least mimicking white family structure\norms.

    Now, if you think white fertility demographics look bad, you should see them for blacks. Smart college educated black women have terrible fertility. The educated, successful black men they hypergamously need don't exist in sufficient quantity and can, and do, often find white women. The net between this and inter-generational welfare, American blacks are actually getting dumber. (The only caveat is the inflow of white genes from more race mixing. Too complicated to calculate how it all shakes out.)

    ~~~
    What's needed is a eugenic welfare program. The cost of welfare is sterilization. If you're too incompetent to organize your life--fine, we won't let you starve. But that also means you're too incompetent to be having children.

    Replies: @ben tillman

    Now, if you think white fertility demographics look bad, you should see them for blacks. Smart college educated black women have terrible fertility. The educated, successful black men they hypergamously need don’t exist in sufficient quantity and can, and do, often find white women.

    Warning: Anecdote Alert!

    When I tutored in a Black high school, my smartest male pupil (the starting point guard), declared he would be opting for a vasectomy. Didn’t want the cost and hassles of kids.

  99. @Boomstick
    @Hhsiii

    "I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region."

    I flipped through zillow, and while the prices are cheap, the real estate taxes look horrendous. I assume the income taxes and sales taxes are not pleasant, either.

    Replies: @Former Darfur, @Olorin

    Two things-onerous state taxes and gun control laws-caused me to pass up what would have been a plum job (at the time) on the Southern Tier of New York State. It was just a little too far north the Pennsy line to commute. I liked the people and loved the scenery and could tolerate the snow, since the job would have paid enough to buy a 4WD truck.

  100. @Bill Jones
    @WhatEvvs

    "Gunfire “erupted.” "

    I've long loved that phrase; no human agency involved.

    Replies: @njguy73

    Here’s a 1994 article by Theodore Dalrymple titled, “The Knife Went In.”

    http://www.city-journal.org/story.php?id=1371

  101. @wren
    How to decimate a city:

    From wikipedia on East Palo Alto, a few yards from Palo Alto. Nevertheless, EPA had one of the highest murder and crime rates in the country for many years:


    With the outbreak of World War I, the north side of East Palo Alto became a military training ground, of which only the Veteran's Administration Hospital in Menlo Park still exists. In the 1940s, East Palo Alto was a farming community with many Japanese residents. During the war, the Japanese were forced out, many to relocation centers, and did not return after the war. In the 1950s the farms were built over with cheap housing and many African-American families moved in. During the civil rights movement of the 1960s there was a renewed interest in African history, one expression of which was a fad for Swahili. The city was almost renamed Nairobi, center of the Swahili-speaking area in 1968 to reflect the population's African roots.[13][14] Critics of the change pointed out that Nairobi was the capital of Kenya, in East Africa, and had little to do with the cultural roots of most black Americans. In the end, the change was not made.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Palo_Alto,_California

    Replies: @Former Darfur

    For what it’s worth, Swahili was quite the fad at one time. Johnny Carson was studying it, Star Trek named its black female Comm Officer with a Swahili name and black power outfits all over Chicago, certainly, had Swahili names. It died out when people finally realized that US blacks were all far, far, far from anywhere where Swahili was and if they hadn’t been the Swahili speakers and not Southern whites would have been their massa’s.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @Former Darfur

    Yeah, I remember the Swahili fad.

    , @wren
    @Former Darfur

    When I was living in that area I made very sure my doors were locked before driving through EPA, but didn't know it was the per-capita murder capital of the country. It is a few minute's drive from Palo Alto and Stanford.

    That was in the pre-wikipedia days.

    I also had no idea that it had once been a Japanese farming community.

    Now that the demographics are completely changed, the crime rate is way down.

    I was also kind of trolling for a comment from Unz, since I think this is his neighborhood now.

  102. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Ron Unz
    @cthulhu


    Arclight is a luxury cinema chain, although not quite as nice as the Mexican-owned Cinepolis chain. I’m more than happy to pay $16+ per ticket to sit in a relatively small theater, with really nice reclining chairs, without teenage louts around (there are 21-and-up showings at Cinepolis) to see a good movie.
     
    Well, a few of the local theaters around here have switched over to those large reclining chairs, with assigned seats, both of which seem very inconvenient and annoy me, and some of the individual screening rooms are pretty small. In all my years living here, I'm not sure I've ever encountered any "teenage louts" at a theater, so maybe people in Northern CA are just better behaved. The big 16-screen multiplex is in Mountain View, just next to Google, and they only charge about $12, which still seems ridiculously expensive to me---$16 is just nuts.

    Fortunately, there's the local Stanford Theater, saved by one of the HP Packards over 20 years ago, which shows classic double feature films for $7, $4.50 for matinees, along with $1.50 popcorn and $1.50 sodas. It's always packed, and probably one of the most cost-effective non-profit investments I've ever come across.

    Replies: @Anonymous

    Well, a few of the local theaters around here have switched over to those large reclining chairs, with assigned seats, both of which seem very inconvenient and annoy me

    These dine-in theaters are the trend around the country. I always feel awkward bringing in concession stand food when they have waiters in there who expect you to order food from them.

  103. @Former Darfur
    @wren

    For what it's worth, Swahili was quite the fad at one time. Johnny Carson was studying it, Star Trek named its black female Comm Officer with a Swahili name and black power outfits all over Chicago, certainly, had Swahili names. It died out when people finally realized that US blacks were all far, far, far from anywhere where Swahili was and if they hadn't been the Swahili speakers and not Southern whites would have been their massa's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @wren

    Yeah, I remember the Swahili fad.

  104. @AndrewR
    @2Mintzin1

    If recent weeks have shown anything it's that committed groups of angry blacks can punch well above their weight. Granted most of it has been in the playpen of academia, but I wonder what would happen if a few dozen blacks tried to occupy Cuomo's office. Heavy handed tactics to remove the "protesters" would make for bad optics in today's SJWified political arena.

    Replies: @Olorin

    Actually, it’s not about black “commitment,” but MSM magnification.

    And it’s not THEIR weight.

  105. @Boomstick
    @Hhsiii

    "I read years ago the best house buying deals in the country are in the Syracuse region."

    I flipped through zillow, and while the prices are cheap, the real estate taxes look horrendous. I assume the income taxes and sales taxes are not pleasant, either.

    Replies: @Former Darfur, @Olorin

    Or as I like to remind people in the market for Getaway From Doom (however you define it), these days, you either pay through the nose for real estate or you pay through the nose for the right to occupy the place you bought.

    Either way, nobody “owns” a house anymore. Everybody’s renting–at least in the dying middle class.

    I’d expect demographic/genetic commonalities among people who would rather overpay for a house and have the money go to the seller or developer, than underpay for a house and have the money go to the undertow (as taxes).

  106. @Forbes
    I grew up in Syracuse, and while the city has turned into a dump, the issue that drives people out of the city and the state--not just flight to the suburbs--is the tax burden. High sales taxes, high property taxes, high income taxes due to spending polices driven by NYC/downstate agenda.

    The employment base has left, and with it the tax base. General Electric (Electronics Park) was once the largest employer with around 12,000 employees at the end of the Vietnam war. General Motors, Chrysler, Carrier (with HQ), and Bristol Myers had huge mfg operations--all gone. (And none were actually located in the city, except Carrier's HQ built downtown in the '60s when the now-blamed interstate highways made the commute convenient.) The mfg operations all generated significant employment for regional suppliers. Electronics Park is now part of Lockheed Martin with 2,200 employees.

    Now the largest employers are SUNY's Upstate Medical University and Syracuse University--two tax-exempt institutions--located adjacent to the derided I-81.

    People have forgotten how long the this downward spiral has been trending, as the decision to replace an elevated highway causes people to revisit and revise history. Here's a clue: In November 1994, an unknown state senator named George Pataki defeated incumbent governor Mario Cuomo's quest for a fourth term. (Cuomo was the World's Greatest Orator title-holder, prior to the present WH occupant.) Formerly Democratic majorities upstate in Erie (Buffalo), Monroe (Rochester), Onondaga (Syracuse), and Oneida (Utica) counties flipped to the Republican by large margins. Upstate never recovered from Cuomo's tax and spend devastation.

    Obviously, there's more to the story than I've outlined--but the question of the replacement for the elevated highway has caused a lot of nonsense revisionism to surface, making the highway the bogeyman for lots of political policy error. It's just easier to blame nameless, faceless people from an earlier era, than to face the failures of the present for a clue about how to proceed.

    Replies: @Forbes, @AnonAnon

    This, 1000%. High taxes – the highest in the US – and crap management by Democrats. I grew up in upstate NY, outside nearby Utica, and am a Syracuse grad. My father’s family are all from Syracuse and some still live there. My parents were forever bitching about the tax burden and how upstate got screwed by downstate/NYC. My dad worked 30+ years at the Utica General Electric but took early retirement when they were winding down the plant for closure and has since left the state for the southwest. My siblings and I left as soon as we graduated college and are now all out west. I’m shocked how much Utica’s population has declined since I was born – from 100K to 60K, though it was always a shithole. Syracuse’s population has decline 30,000 since when I was there for college, though the college has added a ton of buildings. However, the nice suburb I grew up in has actually gained a little in population. It was never a growth area but it was a decent place, if very boring, to grow up as a kid. The endless gray days – 63 sunny days – right up there with the Pacific Northwest – not to mention the long and snowy winters are pretty brutal on the spirit. I would never move back.

    • Replies: @Clyde
    @AnonAnon


    I’m shocked how much Utica’s population has declined since I was born – from 100K to 60K, though it was always a shithole.
     
    Not totally because they produced Utica Club beer which was a cut above
  107. @Steve Sailer
    @Paleo Retiree

    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels -- Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin -- of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.

    Replies: @Pat Gilligan

    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels — Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin — of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.

    Are you really expecting people to believe that you remembered and recognized landscape described in a novel?? This is the most bizarre thing I’ve ever heard. While I haven’t read a novel since high school, it would seem that when we read we form scenes in our minds that are drawn from actual, familiar places or at least the constituent parts are.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @Pat Gilligan

    "While I haven’t read a novel since high school,"

    I think you've answered your own question.

    , @Steve Sailer
    @Pat Gilligan

    "While I haven’t read a novel since high school,"

    I think you've answered your own question.

  108. @Leftist conservative
    With the liberal political tribe, the boogeyman that is ultimately responsible for all evil is white racism....

    With the conservative political tribe, it's welfare that is the boogeyman hiding behind the curtain. Newsflash--welfare is far less common than you think. Outside of families headed by females, it is almost nonexistent. Oh, yeah, food stamps. But if you think foodstamps are what keep people in upstate new york, well, then you must be a member of a certain political religion....

    Replies: @another commenter, @bomag, @WRB, @AnotherDad, @Herr Niemand

    But what brought them there in the first place?
    Explanation 1: Comparatively generous welfare benefits, civic culture, and until the 1970’s — jobs.
    Explanation 2: The absence of immigration restrictions with the former confederacy.

  109. Some of the newly fashionable communities in NYC are intersected with bridges, flyovers, and highways (Long Island City, Williamsburg, and Tribeca).

  110. @Pat Gilligan
    @Steve Sailer


    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels — Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin — of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.
     
    Are you really expecting people to believe that you remembered and recognized landscape described in a novel?? This is the most bizarre thing I've ever heard. While I haven't read a novel since high school, it would seem that when we read we form scenes in our minds that are drawn from actual, familiar places or at least the constituent parts are.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer

    “While I haven’t read a novel since high school,”

    I think you’ve answered your own question.

  111. @Pat Gilligan
    @Steve Sailer


    A number of years ago, I was driving through the beautiful Finger Lakes region for the first time and it suddenly occurred to me that the landscape was familiar from the novels — Lolita, Pale Fire, and Pnin — of Nabokov, who had taught at Cornell in his prime.
     
    Are you really expecting people to believe that you remembered and recognized landscape described in a novel?? This is the most bizarre thing I've ever heard. While I haven't read a novel since high school, it would seem that when we read we form scenes in our minds that are drawn from actual, familiar places or at least the constituent parts are.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @Steve Sailer

    “While I haven’t read a novel since high school,”

    I think you’ve answered your own question.

  112. @Mr. Anon
    I remember how I-280 in Northern California turned Woodside and Los Altos Hills into ghettos.

    Replies: @Shaq, @Capn Mike

    , I was hoping for a 280 reference. Lord knows those venture firms on the Sand Hill Road exit turned the neighborhood into a dump.

  113. @2Mintzin1
    Interesting topic. There are lots of black people in Syracuse today who believe that the raised highway was deliberately installed to split up black neighborhoods, and thus dilute the black vote. That kind of silly paranoid non– analysis is almost not worth refuting. The fact is that the I – 81 elevated highway permits a lot of truck and vacationing automobile traffic to move between Pennsylvania/downstate New York and points upstate without encountering a traffic light.

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with... A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
    Jesus wept.

    This is such a dumb idea, I'm not even sure how to argue against it.

    Look, when you get down to it, New York state really doesn't want to pay to replace the elevated highway, it is expensive. And Syracuse, despite its reliably Dem leadership, does not have the political pull that it had that it back in the 1960s.

    The only hope Syracuse has is that Cuomo II can be convinced to lay some state money on it, as he recently did for Buffalo.

    Replies: @Ed, @AndrewR, @Another Canadian, @Buffalo Joe, @Muse

    Mike, Humboldt Parkway was a tree lined street level road to downtown Buffalo. It was replaced with the Kensington Expressway, not elevated, but no traffic lights ,to move suburban traffic to downtown Buffalo. The black community here still blames a lot of their problems on the expressway, excuse du jour.

  114. @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    Steve, Kodak and Xerox were headquartered in Rochester. Great jobs and phenomenal benefits. No highway or expressway turned Roc to trash, it was done in by technology. Who uses photo film any more? Rochester does have a black mayor though, Lovely Warren.

    • Replies: @2Mintzin1
    @Buffalo Joe

    Let us not forget that Saul Alinsky perfected his famous "How to FUBAR American Society" techniques in Rochester...stirring up labor trouble against Kodak, if I remember right.

  115. “But mill streams and canals as economic resources passed their peaks maybe 125-175 years ago, so upstate New York is overbuilt with small cities that made brilliant economic sense at one time but not any longer.”

    One of my late-19th-century ancestors was an entrepreneur and civic bigwig in his Syracuse suburb; he remained successful well into the 20th century thanks to a remarkably keen sense for when his line of work was about to become technologically obsolete, whereupon he would shift his money over into some newfangled industry. I still have a lot of cousins there, but so far, not a single one of them has stayed in Onondaga County past college age, though I assume some will probably return eventually after marrying and starting families. Yes, welfare is definitely the only thing keeping Syracuse and similar cities stabilizing at a normal population level. Downtown is particularly depressing because of all the beautiful old buildings that remind one of how thriving the place used to be. It’s practically a ghost town, now.

    Hard numbers are difficult to find, but anecdotally, it seems like there’s a selection effect that makes Syracuse blacks particularly dysfunctional and un-motivated, even relative to African-American norms. Like the welfare-generous Upper Midwest, only the most utterly unambitious people tend to stick around. A cousin of mine recalls being stuck on a bus once next to a man talking very, very loudly into a cell phone about how much fun he had smoking crack in a parking lot last night, and how he was on his way to buy some more crack to smoke in the same parking lot later that evening, not caring in the least who might overhear him. It didn’t occur to the man to even put up a pretense of being a productive citizen. Conversely, I once met an ambitious, talented young black man with family ties to the Syracuse area, but he had naturally been raised elsewhere and lived in a trendy hipster neighborhood in a big coastal city. It’s a classic Brain Drain situation.

    With Syracuse in the state it’s in, how bad are things on the Onondaga Reservation? Most of the demographic data I could find specifically on the Rez were either incomplete or had an absurdly high margin of error. The one thing I noticed is that people on the Rez seem to be really old- are the young people leaving for somewhere else, are they just not being counted in the census, are lots of them imprisoned, or is there a horrifically high abortion rate? All of the above? If they’re leaving, where are they finding work? I know emergency medical services declared the Reservation a no-go-zone earlier this year after being shot at one too many times, so I can’t imagine any palefaces are enthusiastic about conducting door-to-door demographic research.

  116. @2Mintzin1
    Interesting topic. There are lots of black people in Syracuse today who believe that the raised highway was deliberately installed to split up black neighborhoods, and thus dilute the black vote. That kind of silly paranoid non– analysis is almost not worth refuting. The fact is that the I – 81 elevated highway permits a lot of truck and vacationing automobile traffic to move between Pennsylvania/downstate New York and points upstate without encountering a traffic light.

    The kerfuffle which is taking place right now involves the proposal of the SJW locals to replace the elevated highway with... A surface street! With traffic lights! Traffic calming devices will be installed!
    Jesus wept.

    This is such a dumb idea, I'm not even sure how to argue against it.

    Look, when you get down to it, New York state really doesn't want to pay to replace the elevated highway, it is expensive. And Syracuse, despite its reliably Dem leadership, does not have the political pull that it had that it back in the 1960s.

    The only hope Syracuse has is that Cuomo II can be convinced to lay some state money on it, as he recently did for Buffalo.

    Replies: @Ed, @AndrewR, @Another Canadian, @Buffalo Joe, @Muse

    Boston used billions of federal. dollars to put the elevated freeway underground through downtown. It was a high water mark of leftist pork barrel spending, and corrupt construction contracts, and we all paid for it.

    It should be no surprise that Syracuse wants to copy Boston. Residents of liberal Oak Park IL have been proposing the same type of project for the freeway that bisects their community. The common denominator in all these boondoggles is that the democratic constituents enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure project while others pay for it. No different than a water park for students at Mizzou I guess.

    • Replies: @Brutusale
    @Muse

    Ah, the Thomas P. O'Neill Tunnel, or Tip's Tunnel to the local wags. Notice that the Wiki article said that the elevated Route 93 "cut off the North End from the rest of the city, hampering economic growth", leaving out that there were pathways through the area among the parking lots owned by the North End mafiosi.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_P._O%27Neill_Jr._Tunnel

    And for the the $14.6 billion (190% cost overrun), you'd hope that the rust and corrosion wouldn't be such a problem. An engineering marvel indeed...

    http://www.wcvb.com/news/review-state-spends-millions-to-pump-out-of-big-dig-tunnels/35854308

  117. @Hhsiii
    @Buzz Mohawk

    Oh yeah, the wife loves to look at farmhouses upstate. Although she says too cold for her to retire there. She insists on California for that. I keep referring her to iSteve when she brings that up.

    Replies: @Buffalo Joe

    Hhsiii, My wife and I and another couple do day trips to the Finger Lake Region, absolutely breathtaking in the fall. The Thruway, I-90, in NY takes a straight level route East to West, but dropping off at any of a number of exits shows a little known side to NY. Corning, Ithaca, Seneca Falls, Canandaigua, Hammondsport… a couple of hours tops for us.

  118. @Reg Cæsar
    @Anonymous


    Doesn’t upstate NY have brutal winters with huge blizzards every year?
     
    Buffalo gets the all-the-snow-at-once blizzards off the (other) lake. But Syracuse gets 50% more snow over the winter. It's just more steady.

    Syracuse is the snowiest city in the lower 48, and ties with Juneau, Alaska. Though UP villages where only Finns are crazy enough to live get 50% more snow than Syracuse.

    By the way, in 1956 Syracuse had an NBA team, as did Rochester. They're in Philadelphia and Sacramento now.

    Replies: @EriK, @Rapparee

    Syracuse is a good example of the way local territorialism latches on to college ball, as Steve described in a recent article. Lacking nationally-prominent pro teams (few outside NY have ever heard of the Chiefs or The Crunch), Syracusians use the SU Orangemen as the main outlet for their athletic loyalties- even those who have never had a family member attend the school. Those college “amateurs” are essentially the nationally-competitive pro team for a city that doesn’t really have one.

  119. @Buzz Mohawk
    BTW, Upstate New York is a good place to buy a farm and retire.

    I know several people who have done it. One guy left Wall Street around age 40 and did it. Another couple bought a dairy farm and are making boutique cheese. An older business owner got tired of how obnoxious people were becoming in the New York City megalopolis, said aw fuck it, and did it.

    Good land and agriculture are the often forgotten parts of New York.

    You can buy a lot of acreage for reasonable money, and the neighbors are all...shall we say... nice American types of people. Conservative even! Sharp and well educated in many instances.

    Everything depends on your perspective.

    Replies: @Hhsiii, @Another Canadian, @Dr. X

    No, Upstate New York is a HORRIBLE place to “retire and buy a farm.” Sure, there’s some nice scenery… but you’ve got the highest taxes in the nation, the worst gun laws in the nation, no jobs other than government jobs (e.g., state corrections or teacher) and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.

    The so-called “conservatives” in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas… and even then, they are completely and entirely outvoted on every single issue by the uber-liberal snobs of New York City.

    • Replies: @Perspective
    @Dr. X

    "and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters."

    I live on the north side of lake Ontario so I'm not exposed to nearly as many snow squalls as upstate New York is, but yes, for its latitude the great lakes region is fairly cool. Toronto is actually as far south as most of the French riviera. I find it's the constant wind that really makes it feel cooler than the average temperature would suggest. Chicago, as a city on the great lakes, deserves its moniker as the windy city.

    , @Buzz Mohawk
    @Dr. X

    My friends are quite happy there.

    They can afford the taxes (and it's agricultural land, which helps). They couldn't care less about gun laws (they can easily own and use shotguns and hunting rifles, so what's the problem? One has killed deer with both a hunting rifle and a compound bow.) They don't need jobs (because they are r-e-t-i-r-e-d). And they like the seasons.

    They all moved there from the Northeast, where the taxes, laws and weather are the same -- crappy. So they're used to it. At home, even.

    They like having a lot of land and doing something with it. I understand them. They wouldn't be caught dead (or want to get old and die) in a condo in Florida or a retirement community in Arizona.

    You are correct, but it all depends on your perspective, as I said.

    , @Reg Cæsar
    @Dr. X


    the worst gun laws in the nation
     
    No, those are in Illinois.

    My mother's cousin would have had to go through hoops to get a concealed carry permit in his native NYC. But in pre-Killeen Texas, where he managed convenience stores, he had to put up with the inconvenience of open carry because the 19th-century prejudice against concealment was still in force in the law.

    The so-called “conservatives” in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas…
     
    Well, Goldwater did better in upper NY than in Texas, and FDR did a helluva lot better in Texas than in his native upstate, where they knew him and hated his guts. The conservatism of Texas is rather recent.

    Also, the New York legislature recriminalized abortion in 1972 after a two-year experiment failed. But even if the governor hadn't vetoed it, it was moot, as two ladies from Texas, of all places, got the Supreme Court to throw out all such laws.

    …and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.
     
    I prefer to think of this as "white man's weather".

    New York State's winters are like living in a snow globe. You should try one of Minnesota's.
  120. How to decimate a city? Does the Fair Housing Act (1968?) fit in here? I recall neighborhood porch talk of blockbusting realtors using explicitly racial scare tactics to churn properties. I have no real expertise here, just a hunch that there’s been a whole lot of “state-sponsored injury” done by that Act.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @JackOH

    "Does the Fair Housing Act (1968?) fit in here?"

    The Fair Housing Act of 1968 was either too long ago or too soon ago to have any influence, not compared to FDR's redlining or Eisenhower's elevated highway.

  121. @JackOH
    How to decimate a city? Does the Fair Housing Act (1968?) fit in here? I recall neighborhood porch talk of blockbusting realtors using explicitly racial scare tactics to churn properties. I have no real expertise here, just a hunch that there's been a whole lot of "state-sponsored injury" done by that Act.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    “Does the Fair Housing Act (1968?) fit in here?”

    The Fair Housing Act of 1968 was either too long ago or too soon ago to have any influence, not compared to FDR’s redlining or Eisenhower’s elevated highway.

  122. There are many lessons that can be learned from what has happened to the economy and population of upstate New York. The one I had from living there 18 years is I would freeze to death if I endured another winter. Upstate New York is beautiful. It provides a wealth of outdoor adventure and a blend of lakes, woods, low mountains and valleys and small towns that you find in a Norman Rockwell painting. But taxes are too high, government regulations are too steep and the climate is too harsh to make it worthwhile. Consequently millions have moved away and much of the state west of the Hudson River valley has become a land that time, and the global economy, forgot.

    As for the topic at hand look up the history of interstate 70 in Baltimore. There the neighborhoods of west Baltimore stopped the highway from cutting through to reach the city center. And consequently west Baltimore has thrived economically and culturally. Oh, sorry. I just made that up. Too bad it didn’t happen because then there would be actual evidence supporting the thesis being claimed.

  123. D.K.—“Their troubles (like my own parents’) all began in 1956, did you say? “THEY are afraid to say so in public, but many of the North’s big-city mayors groan in private that their biggest and most worrisome problem is the crime rate among Negroes.”

    wren—“From wikipedia on East Palo Alto, a few yards from Palo Alto. Nevertheless, EPA had one of the highest murder and crime rates in the country for many years:”

    (Sigh) In both cases, it was the underclass who just happens to be black, or Hispanic, or Asian. It was observably no different when any other European group who immigrated to our country and engaged in miscreant behavior in the late 1800’s/early 1900’s.

    AnotherDad—What’s needed is a eugenic welfare program. The cost of welfare is sterilization.

    Well, that’s not going to happen, but one can dream, right?

  124. @Dr. X
    @Buzz Mohawk

    No, Upstate New York is a HORRIBLE place to "retire and buy a farm." Sure, there's some nice scenery... but you've got the highest taxes in the nation, the worst gun laws in the nation, no jobs other than government jobs (e.g., state corrections or teacher) and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.

    The so-called "conservatives" in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas... and even then, they are completely and entirely outvoted on every single issue by the uber-liberal snobs of New York City.

    Replies: @Perspective, @Buzz Mohawk, @Reg Cæsar

    “and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.”

    I live on the north side of lake Ontario so I’m not exposed to nearly as many snow squalls as upstate New York is, but yes, for its latitude the great lakes region is fairly cool. Toronto is actually as far south as most of the French riviera. I find it’s the constant wind that really makes it feel cooler than the average temperature would suggest. Chicago, as a city on the great lakes, deserves its moniker as the windy city.

  125. @Dr. X
    @Buzz Mohawk

    No, Upstate New York is a HORRIBLE place to "retire and buy a farm." Sure, there's some nice scenery... but you've got the highest taxes in the nation, the worst gun laws in the nation, no jobs other than government jobs (e.g., state corrections or teacher) and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.

    The so-called "conservatives" in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas... and even then, they are completely and entirely outvoted on every single issue by the uber-liberal snobs of New York City.

    Replies: @Perspective, @Buzz Mohawk, @Reg Cæsar

    My friends are quite happy there.

    They can afford the taxes (and it’s agricultural land, which helps). They couldn’t care less about gun laws (they can easily own and use shotguns and hunting rifles, so what’s the problem? One has killed deer with both a hunting rifle and a compound bow.) They don’t need jobs (because they are r-e-t-i-r-e-d). And they like the seasons.

    They all moved there from the Northeast, where the taxes, laws and weather are the same — crappy. So they’re used to it. At home, even.

    They like having a lot of land and doing something with it. I understand them. They wouldn’t be caught dead (or want to get old and die) in a condo in Florida or a retirement community in Arizona.

    You are correct, but it all depends on your perspective, as I said.

  126. @Dr. X
    @Buzz Mohawk

    No, Upstate New York is a HORRIBLE place to "retire and buy a farm." Sure, there's some nice scenery... but you've got the highest taxes in the nation, the worst gun laws in the nation, no jobs other than government jobs (e.g., state corrections or teacher) and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.

    The so-called "conservatives" in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas... and even then, they are completely and entirely outvoted on every single issue by the uber-liberal snobs of New York City.

    Replies: @Perspective, @Buzz Mohawk, @Reg Cæsar

    the worst gun laws in the nation

    No, those are in Illinois.

    My mother’s cousin would have had to go through hoops to get a concealed carry permit in his native NYC. But in pre-Killeen Texas, where he managed convenience stores, he had to put up with the inconvenience of open carry because the 19th-century prejudice against concealment was still in force in the law.

    The so-called “conservatives” in Upstate New York are not really as conservative as their counterparts in, say, Texas…

    Well, Goldwater did better in upper NY than in Texas, and FDR did a helluva lot better in Texas than in his native upstate, where they knew him and hated his guts. The conservatism of Texas is rather recent.

    Also, the New York legislature recriminalized abortion in 1972 after a two-year experiment failed. But even if the governor hadn’t vetoed it, it was moot, as two ladies from Texas, of all places, got the Supreme Court to throw out all such laws.

    …and utterly HORRENDOUS Siberian-style winters.

    I prefer to think of this as “white man’s weather”.

    New York State’s winters are like living in a snow globe. You should try one of Minnesota’s.

  127. @AnonAnon
    @Forbes

    This, 1000%. High taxes - the highest in the US - and crap management by Democrats. I grew up in upstate NY, outside nearby Utica, and am a Syracuse grad. My father's family are all from Syracuse and some still live there. My parents were forever bitching about the tax burden and how upstate got screwed by downstate/NYC. My dad worked 30+ years at the Utica General Electric but took early retirement when they were winding down the plant for closure and has since left the state for the southwest. My siblings and I left as soon as we graduated college and are now all out west. I'm shocked how much Utica's population has declined since I was born - from 100K to 60K, though it was always a shithole. Syracuse's population has decline 30,000 since when I was there for college, though the college has added a ton of buildings. However, the nice suburb I grew up in has actually gained a little in population. It was never a growth area but it was a decent place, if very boring, to grow up as a kid. The endless gray days - 63 sunny days - right up there with the Pacific Northwest - not to mention the long and snowy winters are pretty brutal on the spirit. I would never move back.

    Replies: @Clyde

    I’m shocked how much Utica’s population has declined since I was born – from 100K to 60K, though it was always a shithole.

    Not totally because they produced Utica Club beer which was a cut above

  128. @Muse
    @2Mintzin1

    Boston used billions of federal. dollars to put the elevated freeway underground through downtown. It was a high water mark of leftist pork barrel spending, and corrupt construction contracts, and we all paid for it.

    It should be no surprise that Syracuse wants to copy Boston. Residents of liberal Oak Park IL have been proposing the same type of project for the freeway that bisects their community. The common denominator in all these boondoggles is that the democratic constituents enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure project while others pay for it. No different than a water park for students at Mizzou I guess.

    Replies: @Brutusale

    Ah, the Thomas P. O’Neill Tunnel, or Tip’s Tunnel to the local wags. Notice that the Wiki article said that the elevated Route 93 “cut off the North End from the rest of the city, hampering economic growth”, leaving out that there were pathways through the area among the parking lots owned by the North End mafiosi.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_P._O%27Neill_Jr._Tunnel

    And for the the $14.6 billion (190% cost overrun), you’d hope that the rust and corrosion wouldn’t be such a problem. An engineering marvel indeed…

    http://www.wcvb.com/news/review-state-spends-millions-to-pump-out-of-big-dig-tunnels/35854308

  129. 2Mintzin1 [AKA "Mike"] says:
    @Steve Sailer
    @Anonymous

    Wasn’t Kodak based in upstate New York as well?

    Xerox too.

    Mark Twain, author of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court," is buried in Elmira, NY near the Pennsylvania state line. It's apparently traditional to sit on his tombstone and smoke a contemplative cigar.

    Replies: @Bill Jones, @Clifford Brown, @Desiderius, @Reg Cæsar, @anon, @Buffalo Joe, @2Mintzin1

    Upstate New York outside of major cities has been depopulating for many years (some of this is going on within the cities themselves, of course but the populations there tend to be somewhat more stable because, let’s face it, they don’t necessarily have to work to exist).
    Syracuse probably has the worst murder problem I have seen, considering its small population. One of the local police officers got into trouble last year when he admitted to a newspaper reporter that a good deal of this was due to Mexican drug dealers fighting it out with the locals. There really aren’t any jobs, and young men hang out in the street all day, a recipe for trouble. The south side of the city is pretty scary to drive through, even in daylight.

    As far as the upstate suburbs/rural areas are concerned, the white poverty really amazes me. Because New York State is now politically ruled by downstate (New York City/Westchester/Long Island), the ruling party really doesn’t have any reason to help them. In fact, I would say that state policies which damage the upstate suburbs/rural areas ,such as Cuomo II’s recent ban on fracking, are really kind of a win/win situation for the Dems… In a kind of Flynn Effect way, they drive people out of these traditionally Republican areas.

    Buffalo has reportedly received a lot of state money recently, which has helped it somewhat. I would guess that the original source of this was the Federal money-printing machine, but who knows. Government finance is one of the black arts.

    • Replies: @2Mintzin1
    @2Mintzin1

    Mike, we are wrong...it is Curley Effect, or Coleman Young effect, not "Flynn."

  130. @Buffalo Joe
    @Steve Sailer

    Steve, Kodak and Xerox were headquartered in Rochester. Great jobs and phenomenal benefits. No highway or expressway turned Roc to trash, it was done in by technology. Who uses photo film any more? Rochester does have a black mayor though, Lovely Warren.

    Replies: @2Mintzin1

    Let us not forget that Saul Alinsky perfected his famous “How to FUBAR American Society” techniques in Rochester…stirring up labor trouble against Kodak, if I remember right.

  131. @Mr. Anon
    I remember how I-280 in Northern California turned Woodside and Los Altos Hills into ghettos.

    Replies: @Shaq, @Capn Mike

    Yeah, I volunteer at a soup kitchen in Woodside. Tragic.

  132. @2Mintzin1
    @Steve Sailer

    Upstate New York outside of major cities has been depopulating for many years (some of this is going on within the cities themselves, of course but the populations there tend to be somewhat more stable because, let's face it, they don't necessarily have to work to exist).
    Syracuse probably has the worst murder problem I have seen, considering its small population. One of the local police officers got into trouble last year when he admitted to a newspaper reporter that a good deal of this was due to Mexican drug dealers fighting it out with the locals. There really aren't any jobs, and young men hang out in the street all day, a recipe for trouble. The south side of the city is pretty scary to drive through, even in daylight.

    As far as the upstate suburbs/rural areas are concerned, the white poverty really amazes me. Because New York State is now politically ruled by downstate (New York City/Westchester/Long Island), the ruling party really doesn't have any reason to help them. In fact, I would say that state policies which damage the upstate suburbs/rural areas ,such as Cuomo II's recent ban on fracking, are really kind of a win/win situation for the Dems... In a kind of Flynn Effect way, they drive people out of these traditionally Republican areas.

    Buffalo has reportedly received a lot of state money recently, which has helped it somewhat. I would guess that the original source of this was the Federal money-printing machine, but who knows. Government finance is one of the black arts.

    Replies: @2Mintzin1

    Mike, we are wrong…it is Curley Effect, or Coleman Young effect, not “Flynn.”

  133. @Another Canadian
    @Paleo Retiree

    My son and I were at an AAU basketball tournament in Syracuse a few years ago and stayed in Auburn. There was this drive-in restaurant overlooking the lake that must have been from the 1950s. We all loved it; it was like going back in time. The Finger Lakes is one of America's high quality of life and low cost regions.

    Replies: @Anon87

    Shhh, please stop talking about it or else we will never be able to afford it. Bad enough people like Cher and Alec Baldwin are in the know.

    • Replies: @2Mintzin1
    @Anon87

    Rumor has it that Derek Jeter is buying a place on Lake Skaneatles (sp.?). Tim Green (NFL ret.) was up here for a while too.

  134. @Anon87
    @Another Canadian

    Shhh, please stop talking about it or else we will never be able to afford it. Bad enough people like Cher and Alec Baldwin are in the know.

    Replies: @2Mintzin1

    Rumor has it that Derek Jeter is buying a place on Lake Skaneatles (sp.?). Tim Green (NFL ret.) was up here for a while too.

  135. @Former Darfur
    @wren

    For what it's worth, Swahili was quite the fad at one time. Johnny Carson was studying it, Star Trek named its black female Comm Officer with a Swahili name and black power outfits all over Chicago, certainly, had Swahili names. It died out when people finally realized that US blacks were all far, far, far from anywhere where Swahili was and if they hadn't been the Swahili speakers and not Southern whites would have been their massa's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @wren

    When I was living in that area I made very sure my doors were locked before driving through EPA, but didn’t know it was the per-capita murder capital of the country. It is a few minute’s drive from Palo Alto and Stanford.

    That was in the pre-wikipedia days.

    I also had no idea that it had once been a Japanese farming community.

    Now that the demographics are completely changed, the crime rate is way down.

    I was also kind of trolling for a comment from Unz, since I think this is his neighborhood now.

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