Pulling Up Stakes

There comes a time when one must consider one's situation and weigh the options. The status quo, of course, is always an option, even if it's the least desirable one. And so it is that after much pondering, we have come to the conclusion that it's finally time to leave The Land of Enchantment for other environs.

The desire for freedom is not easily quenched. The political environment here in "North Mexico" had deteriorated over the years to where a freedom-loving person must ask whether the benefits are worth the cost. To be sure, the state has much to recommend it. We enjoy the outdoors and the open spaces. But that can only make up for just so much. Taxes and government regulation have greatly eroded the quality of life.

And so we have looked elsewhere for en environment more conducive to the sort of peaceful, libertarian lifestyle we've come to enjoy. There has been a temptation to join the Free Staters in New Hampshire, but the climate there is not to our liking. Likewise Wyoming. Other nearby states were considered. Colorado is going the way of New Mexico. Texas has a certain appeal, but no self-respecting New Mexican would willingly move there. (OK, that's largely a joke. The taxation and regulatory environment there are not significantly better than here, although the economy is better.)

Without going through all 50 options, we've been drawn toward Appalachia, mostly because of the spirit of the people. West Virginia is out, mostly because of its socialist leanings. Kentucky is inviting, but the economy is not so good. Southern Virginia is a temptation, but it's a bit too remote.

That leaves the Volunteer State. A huge plus is that Tennessee -- like six other states -- has no state income tax. The climate in the eastern half is rather mild, especially in the strip of mountains that runs from Birmingham up to Charleston, WV. The three largest cities in that area are Nashville, Chattanooga, and Knoxville. Nashville is out as being too expensive. Knoxville is tempting, but Chattanooga is less expensive. Although the economy in that area is doing poorly now, the coming VW plant promises to improve things and could have a ripple effect throughout surrounding counties.

A big plus will be the mountains themselves. Not quite like the Rockies, but at least it's not flat. The humidity will take some getting used to, though. Word is that the people in Tennessee are different from most areas of the South, particularly in the eastern third of the state. Nate lives up toward Nashville; we should probably try to make contact and get acquainted, as we only know each other from posts over at Vox's. Packrat has been considering a move to eastern Tennessee, and The Old Sarge has lived there for several years with no regrets.

All in all, it merits at least exploration. It will be difficult to leave this place. Ming the Merciless does not take well to road trips, and it takes at least two days to drive from here to Chattanooga, if one drives sensibly. He'll have to stay here for the nonce. Maybe Magic Fingers could take him in for a week or so. We'll see how it goes.


At 8:11 PM, May 25, 2009, Blogger Ted, a/k/a Galt-in-Da-Box said...

What's going wrong in New Mexico(Serious request: I wanted to go home to Tucumcari to retire)?
Email me w/ details.
If you're trying to get away from "Beanerville", it ain't gonna happen - sorry, but them's the facts. Indiana is getting overrun with them. I liked the cultural influence, but not if it's becoming dominant, and everywhere you look is a slum.
email's on my profile.

At 6:44 PM, May 27, 2009, Anonymous The Old Sarge said...

Tennessee ain't so bad. It kinda grows on ya. (OK, so does mold, but that's another story.) All in all, it's been OK these last 9 years or so.

But the humidity sucks.

At 8:16 PM, May 28, 2009, Blogger Ted, a/k/a Galt-in-Da-Box said...

I've been to Tennessee.
TOS has it right...It's pretty.
Not as pretty as Kentucky, but go figure!


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