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Archive for December 7th, 2014

Flint on the Prairie

williston-300x199

Williston as I remember it.

I once hitch hiked through Williston ND, 1978, traveling the back roads. It was a pristine town on the rugged prairies, almost to Montana. I remember that everyone I saw was blonde. It was the first time I ever felt like I blended in. They are mostly Norwegian and German, with some Swedes and Dutch, according to Wiki. The town had a population of around 10,000 when I passed through. Now it is a fracked up boomtown.

willll

Housing is scarce.

 

Population has quadrupled, a magnet for desperate men from around the country.  Jobs can earn $100,000 a year, but housing is expensive, as expensive as New York City, and conditions trying.

Williston is held up by the chatterers of the right as an example of the glories of capitalism. All that wealth, all those opportunities!

willllolo

Future slums.

Yes, but based upon the rape of the earth, the aptly named fracking procedure, almost a parody of capitalist attitude toward creation.

And the prosperity created is about as sustainable as any that of those other exploitative booms. When they are done with it and profits elsewhere call, they will abandon North Dakota.

Williston will in the future be Flint on the prairie.

Here is a photoessay on Williston:

http://www.businessinsider.com/youve-never-seen-anything-like-the-williston-oil-boom-2012-3?op=1willilil

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