Updated Editorial: Tulsa will host President Donald J. Trump June 20, 2020 at the BOK as Elon Musk considers the area for an electric truck plant. First, for workers considering relocation, know that you will be welcome, if employed, and generally a home can be had for one fourth what a comparable property in California is valued. Low cost of living works.
Next know “Tulsa, Oklahoma Was Voted The Most Oddball Place In The State…And For Good Reasons,” according to the website Know Your State which summarizes, “Even in NBA-crazy Oklahoma City, cowboy culture defines Oklahoma. Yet in Tulsa — the smallest US city with its own ballet, opera, and symphony — country-Western radio, megachurches, and old oil money coexist with world-class museums (the Philbrook and the Gilcrease), Art Deco architecture and a trendy Downtown. Tulsa has diversified from hydrocarbons to aerospace and finance, and it’s cornerstone event is oddly international for this landlocked state: an Oktoberfest that ranks among the best anywhere…”
Tulsa was once the Oil Capital of the World. Risk takers here called “wildcatters” bet on cutting-edge technology to harvest energy from deep in the earth to power the industrial revolution and prosperity. While the industry has largely migrated to Houston the lasting heritage can be seen in majestic homes with beautiful lawns, well-established arts, nonprofit organizations and stunning architecture from the Art Deco mentioned above to a single version of the former NYC World Trade Center.
Oklahoma gained statehood in 1907 and has always been individualistic and populist. Sadly, then leaders believed that local government would be more accountable to the people so in this small state we have 77 county governments. Add almost 90 sovereign Native American Nations and municipalities and that is a lot of government.
Speaking of government workers; Oklahoma has 537 school districts, 25 colleges and universities, 11 regional universities, 12 community colleges, 11 constituent agencies and one higher education center (whatever that is). In Tulsa there are two private (TU and ORU) universities, but it remains the largest city in the nation without a four-year free-standing state university.
The above-mentioned Oktoberfest began when five friends decided to have an annual party that would give them an excuse to drink beer all year (best board meetings ever). It kept growing until they hired another friend to be the executive which ultimately resulted in a bureaucracy assuming control, but it is still the best time of the fall. We love festivals.
Tulsa is on the cusp of the Great Plains and the Ozark Plateau with a heavy dose of Southern charm. You can drive 15 minutes in any direction and be on a lake or in wilderness and many live on county estates from moderate investment. Tulsa County is the only county in the state with a Park System. In fact, we have three park systems in the metro and one so-called public park controlled by a nonprofit.
Nonprofits are a huge power in Tulsa funded generally by third and fourth generation oil money and run more now by Leftist accountants rather than risk-takers that built fortunes. The exception is our local billionaire Fabian Socialist and reported second largest bundler for Barack Obama. He does good works locally, but Elon Musk would be a welcome leader of independent thinking and a counterbalance for the younger generations.
A local company innovated and made a fortune when they used an oil pipeline cleaning device to pull fiber optic cable nationwide. We innovate here and are bold enough naturally to suggest change – at least in business.
Tulsa has the third largest community of LGBT folk (after San Francisco and Houston) and an “Equity Center” established in 1980 downtown. Tulsa Conservatives don’t care what someone else may select as a lifestyle – it’s an individual Liberty thing.
There are churches in abundance of all faiths, vibrant synagogues, and mosques. We have growing Hispanic and Chinese communities and even a “Confucius Center” courtesy of Oklahoma University in Tulsa.
Now to politics: while Oklahoma is considered Conservative, we were controlled by Democrats for 100 years and only recently have Republicans gained elected majorities. The so-called National Democratic Party left Oklahoma voters behind when they stopped representing the working class.
Tulsa holds nonpartisan municipal elections which allow Leftist to maintain bureaucratic control. Tulsa County is in majority Republican. Most citizens ignore politics and media. Our current mayor is “not an idea guy but a process guy” by his admission and while some say he is processing Tulsa to disrepair he is a “Poindexter” with decent debating skills that wants to return to work in the nation’s capital.
Driving in midtown; my Pow Wow Truck was honked at and the single finger of disrespect shown by a soccer mom in a mini-van when she saw my “45 Earned My Vote” bumper sticker. So much for civil debate. I have long been active as a Republican but have withdrawn somewhat not over policy but leadership which seems more likely to stand in a circle and shoot their friends than support those that mostly agree.
I established Tulsa Today in 1996 and it is the oldest online independent local news site on the Internet, but don’t think we are universally admired. As the Bible says, “A prophet is only despised in his own home and in his own country.”
We have broken stories of statewide corruption resulting in criminal convictions, stopped international fraud from harvesting local wealth, made a difference in a Department of Defense program to help keep warriors safe in the field and generally fought for the powerless abused by power.
I will attend the rally of President Donald J. Trump. I am glad to add my voice in support of the greatest president in my lifetime. He has done magnificent work to accomplish more of what he promised than any other elected official in any office in history. The economy will recover. Liberty will win and America will flourish with God’s Grace and our good labor.
Tesla locating in Tulsa is less sure, but I refuse to abuse the city I love as some more cynical bloggers have done. Yes, Boeing Companies played Tulsa County in 2003 when we voted in support of a tax package not collected or spent, but every location consideration by a major business is not a scam.
Some business solicitations Tulsa wins (recently Amazon) and, in total, we are growing.
We welcome Elon Musk and Tesla employees to the neighborhood.
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