New Mexico is a state in serious trouble. In 2008, when states like South Carolina were in serious economic trouble, New Mexico was okay. Then, Susana Martinez became governor. In South Carolina Nikki Haley, surprisingly, followed, not in Mark Sanford’s Argentine-mistress footsteps, but she has emulated the late, great Carroll Campbell. The economy in South Carolina, today is booming. Real estate is hot. Land prices are skyrocketing. People are moving to the state, the way the once did Florida. New Mexico is dying. It is now in the midst of a double-dip recession. Martinez has not bothered to recruit new industry. Instead, business are fleeing the state. Even long-time residents are leaving the state the way people in the Mid-west did, during the Dust Bowl of the Great Depression. No one in government seems to care as long as they are allowed to continue living in their delusional world of billionaire gas and oil barons and the largess of the government tit.
Regular Pink Flamingo readers probably know I’m trying to sell property my family’s property in New Mexico. It has been a long and frustrating process, due, primarily to the economy and also to the mind-set of realtors in New Mexico. According to the party-line, real estate is worth less in the state of New Mexico, primarily for the only reason that it is in New Mexico and people just aren’t accustomed to paying the same price land, they would play, elsewhere. When confronted, that’s their pat answer. Land in New Mexico, which would sell for $1500/acre in Texas, may go for $500/acre in New Mexico, less than 150 miles from Texas. Right across the state line, into Arizona, at Rodeo, ranch land is going for a minimum of $1,100/acre. In Capitan, NM, ranch land, probably better land, is selling for $744/acre.
That’s the problem. For some strange reason, people in New Mexico have been brainwashed into thinking their land is less valuable than it would be elsewhere. You would think real estate agents in the state would realize the higher the price they sell the land for, the higher the commission they would receive. The same thing holds true with collectibles, antiques, and art (unless one is in Santa Fe). There is no value in anything, in this state. Evidently, this is not an option here. I’ve learned that profit is not an option, neither is well-being, unless it is for those who are the chosen people. The rest of us can rot in hell for all they care.
New Mexico is perhaps the most myopic state in the country. It is blessed with absolutely wonderful people, and scenery that is almost magical. It is also the most corrupt state in the country. It is considered the most difficult state in all of North America in which to open and start a business. It consistently ranks at the top or bottom (depending on how you look at it) rankings on child abuse, poverty, crime, hunger, education, or lack of opportunity. Cynics might try an explain it away as problems within the native cultures, but it is consistent with all ethnic groups. This is a state where poverty, lack of opportunity, choice, and almost oppression are epidemic. While wages are lower, jobs are more scarce, and advancement is minimal, basic prices are fairly high. Gas is more expensive, electricity is more expensive, food is much higher, and health insurance is so expensive it is a joke. There is only one reason for this – absolute corruption, from small town government all the way to the Governor’s office, and those who put her there.
- You do not complain.
- You do not deviate from the norm.
- You accept what is bestowed no matter how sub-standard.
- You turn a blind eye to local and state corruption.
- Excellence is not an option.
- You do not step out of your social caste.
- You do what you are told.
- The wealthy over-lords come first.
- You do what you are told.
- You are not to speak out about a subject.
- The tourist comes first.
- The oil billionaires from Artesia come first.
- You cannot demand change.
- You eat the crap put before you, and say how wonderful it is.
- There is no social advancement.
- If the local ‘expert’ in your specific field decides to destroy you, bow and take it.
- The only thing that matters is flash & trash money.
- In order to advance in local politics, all you need to do is worship the local power-broker.
- Only select individual are allowed to prosper.
- Do not have an opinion contrary to the group.
- Do not attempt an endeavor which has not been approved by the group.
There are other rules such as never make waves when you move to small town, New Mexico. Don’t mention you have real-world experience. The real world does not apply to New Mexico. If the powers that be decide you are only going to get $275/acre for your land, that’s all you’re getting. Do not express an opinion contrary to what you have been told. To do so is to risk ridicule, derision, and social ostracism.
New Mexico has one of the most magnificent and diverse cultures in the country, maybe even in the world. The work of artists here is recognized as culturally important. The state even has World Heritage sites. There are 23 World Heritage Sites in the US. Three of them are from New Mexico:
- Chaco Canyon
- Taos Pueblo
- Carlesbad Caverns National Monument
Yet, the state is so corrupt, the gas and oil industry is pushing to drill near Chaco Canyon. It is so corrupt, individual counties are not allowed to ban fracking. It is so corrupt, elected officials of both parties are doing little to protest the EPA’s catastrophe along the Animas River.
The state basically has two industries gas and oil, and tourism. With a governor who has no inclination to recruit new industry, and a drop on oil prices, this state is in trouble. As we have seen in failed states throughout the world, tourism, corruption, and recession do not mix. Tourism is so important and so vital, the common good of tax-paying residents is often abandoned, in order to appease the tourist. There is a very good reason so many celebrities have moved into the state and bought large parcels of land. They can buy land here at a quarter of a price elsewhere. Texans who would not blink when they pay thousands of dollars an acre, come to New Mexico and refuse to pay a decent and fair amount for our land. Why bother? No one is going to say a word. That’s the way of life in New Mexico. You sit down, shut-up, and must be thankful they want to pay you all of twenty cents on the dollar for your land.
It’s the New Mexico way. If you doubt it, just try opening your mouth and trying to demand excellence, something better, and for people to think outside the box. It isn’t going to happen. Oh, it might, but the powers that be will eventually destroy the wave-maker.