See if you recognize this place.
It’s drug-infested and scandal-plagued; its only growth sector is “methadone clinics.” Government is bloated and ineffective; politicians offer tired bromides or worse. Its politics march to an “angry populist beat” but the electorate is “too old, too tired, and too disillusioned” to turn their anger into action. “Soaring” taxes bludgeon inhabitants into sullen beggary, stripped of the will to resist. Many believe that the place’s “moment has passed.” For-sale signs litter the neighborhoods, as multitudes seek desperately to escape.
In case you don’t recognize this hopeless wasteland or the aimlessly trudging zombie-eyed inhabitants wandering the land, yes, it’s Vermont, and those zombies are you and me.
At least it’s the Vermont that haunts the fever dreams of Geoffrey Norman, best known in Internet circles as the former operator of the late, great free-market blog, Vermont Tiger.
Well, Norman is still around, and is respected enough in conservative circles that he managed to sell an essay to the Wall Street Journal. It’s gloriously entitled “In Declining Vermont, the Mood Is More Resigned Than Angry.”
And if you want to know why some see Vermont as a bad place to relocate or do business, maybe it’s because the readers of the Wall Street Journal are being fed this kind of crapola.
I mean, thanks, Geoffrey, for doing your utmost to defame your home state.