Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Wonder Why Washington Is America's Best State Instead Of Texas

A few days ago, or maybe it was last week, I saw an article headline in the Seattle Times which I clicked.

Washington ranked nation’s best state by U.S. News & World Report

Of course I was intrigued regarding by what criteria U.S. News & World Report would rank my former home state as the Best in America, what with that particular news source having a relatively high level of credibility.

Unlike the "news" source, as in an in-house publication of a Washington, D.C. lobbying entity, which named Fort Worth as one of the Ten Most Livable Cities in America (based on a town's use of the Urban Village concept).

Following this earth shattering news, Fort Worth's city government instigated a city wide celebration, including a big event at Gateway Park. Sort of like a homely girl or guy waking up to suddenly find him or herself in the Top Ten of the Miss or Mr. America pageant, giddy with excitement, ignoring feedback from any nearby mirror.

I remember blogging about that particular Fort Worth embarrassment multiple times, but using this blog's search tool I only found three instances, with all three sort of amusing to read again.

The first instance I found was from 2008...

Oh My! Someone in the News has a Texas Connection!

And then again in 2012...

I Have Done Just About All The Holiday Shopping That I Am Going To Do

The comments to the above link are particularly amusing, particularly the second one, followed by the third.

I have long been made aware of the fact that my hobby of making fun of the American embarrassment known as Fort Worth is greatly irritating to those caught in the Fort Worth bubble, with little exposure to the rest of America.

Or even Dallas.

Along with the extremists who have not yet figured out that the town's problems are largely a result of the town operating in what is known as the Fort Worth Way.

A Way which has come to be known to savvy observers as being a backward, corrupt, insular, regressive way of running a town, allowing the town, for instance, to permit things like being the world's biggest experiment in urban fracking (yet one more Fort Worth failure) or the town embarrassing itself by having something like Rockin' the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats in the regularly polluted with too much e.coli Trinity River.

Searching the blog to see if I can find the earliest instance of blogging about those ridiculous floating beer parties brought up dozens of blog posts, with a particularly amusing J.D. Granger Is A Great Family Man, Faithful Husband & Brilliant Project Manager Rockin' The Trinity River Better Than The San Marcos River one, rendered ironic due to its timeliness, even though it was posted way back in 2011.

Click Rockin the River Happy Hour and you will be seeing a lot of posts about this particular Fort Worth embarrassment. I was surprised to realize this has been going on for so many years now. With no common sense end to the dirty river rockin' yet in sight.

Oh my, my train of thought does go off the rails at times. I'd forgotten this blog post is about my old home state of Washington being ranked the best in the nation.

Going to U.S. News & World Reports Best States Rankings we learn the magazine was "Measuring outcomes for citizens using more than 70 metrics."

And that since U.S. News has been doing this important reporting no state has remained at #1 in subsequent rankings, but there is a state which has managed to rank as the #50th best multiple years in a row.

No, it is not Texas in last place. Last place went to another Southern state, Louisiana.

My old Washington home state has managed to be in the Top Ten whenever U.S. News & World Report has issued one of these Best State in America rankings.

The bottom of the ranking goes mostly to America's southern states, with Alabama nipping at Louisiana's last place finish, coming in at #49. Mississippi is #48, Arkansas #45, Oklahoma #43, Kentucky #40.

With Texas proudly ranking as the #38th Best State in America.

The rest of the South ranks a bit better than Texas, with Tennessee #30, North Carolina #18, Florida #13.

And that old Southern Stronghold of Virginia managing to be in the Top Ten at #7.

Let us end this with the two paragraphs from U.S. News & World Report explaining upon what their Best Rankings were based, which might give us some clue as to what Texas might do to someday manage to be one of the Best States in America (Fixing Fort Worth might be a place to start)...

Some states shine in health care. Some soar in education. Some excel in both – or in much more. The Best States ranking of U.S. states draws on thousands of data points to measure how well states are performing for their citizens. In addition to health care and education, the metrics take into account a state’s economy, its roads, bridges, internet and other infrastructure, its public safety, the fiscal stability of state government, and the opportunity it affords its residents.

More weight was accorded to some state measures than others, based on a survey of what matters most to people. Health care and education were weighted most heavily. Then came state economies, infrastructure, and the opportunity states offer their citizens. Fiscal stability followed closely in weighting, followed by measures of crime & corrections and a state's natural environment.

No comments: