One of the things I’ve known for 40 years or so is that almost anything can happen in OK and nobody elsewhere will care much. Oklahoma, after all, is a benighted conclave of racists and bubbas. They deserve whatever they get.
The pleasant surprise then, is that what they are getting now is prosperity compared with the rest of the country.
I know, I return to my native home several times a year from CA and I experience first-hand the prosperity discussed in detail over at PJM today by Tom Blumer. I like OK well enough after a 25 year absence that I’ve migrated most of my business back to OK to avoid the over-regulation and over-taxation we have here in CA.
What Blumer relates above with facts and figures about low unemployment, etc., I can relate anecdotally, because OK is my original family home and my longing to return to OK has only increased over the years. Even my recently departed son, born and raised in CA, wanted to become an Oklahoman; he respected the values of the countryside that much.
You see, Oklahoma passed an AZ-type anti illegal immigration bill 2 years ago while I was back there for a crappie tournament. The guys at the fishing tournament were a little reserved in their praise for the new law. We said ‘we’ll see.’
And we did. The real story actually has 2 parts: OK’s population growth over the past decades (which has accelerated in the past few years, especially ‘Grapes-of-Wrath-in-Reverse’ migration from CA) and OK’s reliance on traditional values which caused them to pass HB1804 in May of 2007.
So OK has quietly had in place the same law that AZ just passed for 2 years. Except the OK law also denies public benefits to illegals.
Yes, Oklahomans are usually paid a little less (unless you work for an oilfield service company like Haliburton) but the cost of living in OK is much, much lower. Folks are much more polite (you never know who is carrying).
Of course, that big migration from CA means lots of liberal values are migrating to the state as well, so the local respite may be only temporary.
But set that aside and what’s there not to like? Perhaps I should post a Part II with real details about what life is like in OK, anecdote by anecdote.
You can call me Bubba.