Skip to comments.Navajos largely unscathed by recession
Posted on 05/18/2009 9:05:16 AM PDT by posterchild
TONALEA, Ariz. Talk at the community center in this small Navajo town isn't as focused on the economy as it is in many places off the reservation.
That's because the people living on the largest American Indian reservation have been largely unscathed by the recession.
Most Navajos own their own homes, tend not to invest in the stock market and have long had difficulties borrowing money, distinguishing them from millions of other Americans who've suffered from rising mortgage payments, sinking 401(k) retirement accounts and stricter terms from lenders.
And with half of the Navajo Nation's work force unemployed long before this latest recession hit, there's not much fear the job situation could get much worse on the reservation.
"They're freaking out out there, but to us, we've always had 50 percent unemployment," said John C. Whiterock, a Navajo youth pastor. "To us, that's just part of life."
That's not to say the 200,000 people who live on the largest American Indian reservation, which extends into Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, have escaped untouched. Tribal officials are wrangling over how to address a $25 million budget shortfall and requests for social services have prompted newspaper ads for more employees to handle them.
The key has been the ability of Navajos who maintain traditional beliefs to cope, and the attitude that allows them to persevere. The culture teaches that wealth isn't measured by dollars and that the language, the land and kinship are the greatest survival tools.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Been down so long it looks like up to me.
“The key has been the ability of Navajos who maintain traditional beliefs to cope, and the attitude that allows them to persevere. The culture teaches that wealth isn’t measured by dollars and that the language, the land and kinship are the greatest survival tools.”
Sorry. I b@rf when I hear phrases like that.
Pointless article then.
Seem like the statistics paint a bleaker picture than exists. The employment statistic doesn’t count their entrepreneurs as employed even though they have a $6 million industry. Also, raising livestock and growing corn may not show up as ‘income’ to some govt statistics but it doesn’t mean one is poor or starving. Elsewhere it is called farm life and some people call it ‘going Galt.’
Actually, the goal of liberals is for the middle class in this country to be as economically destitute as the Navajos. Their poverty is largely due to an authoritarian tribal government that stifles free enterprise. In the one city on the Navajo rez where free enterprise is allowed, it looks like any ol' suburban highway strip with functioning businesses.
Sorry, but most of the Navajo rez is far worse than you could even envision. Nothing Galt about it. More along the lines of the scene in Atlas Shrugged of a man in a field pulling a plow himself.
Having lived in Gallup and Farmington (both NM towns on the border of the Navajo Reservation), I can pretty much say that these are some of the poorest people you’ll ever meet, even WITH government assistance.
> Sorry. I b@rf when I hear phrases like that.
Living as I do near Ithaca, NY, we hear those sorts of touchy-feely phrases every day. Mostly makes me wanna puke too.
However, as it applies to the Navajo, I'd be willing to bet they are talking about their long-term cultural wealth, not the individual transient wealth of an individual. If it were phrased a little less NewAge-y, I'd bet that a majority of FReepers would sign up to it. Maybe this:
"As conservatives, whether rich or poor, we love and treasure our Nation, our families, and our language, and we believe these are among the lasting traditional values of America."I ain't a writer, but something like that.... anyway, just sayin' beneath the uber-groovy words, there may be more in common that is immediately evident.
It would be interesting to know how much of that 50% unemployment rate is due to drug and alcohol addiction.
that’s because residents of Indian Reservations were largely unscathed by prosperity....
HIP, the Housing Improvement Program, is a home repair, renovation and replacement grant program administered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and federally-recognized Indian tribes for American Indians and Alaska Native individuals and families who have no immediate resource for standard housing. While not an entitlement program, HIP was established under The Snyder Act of 1921 as one of several BIA programs authorized by Congress for the benefit of Indian people.
You know, if your home is paid for by the gov't, and you get goverment assistance for your necessities, and you get free food and clothing - why would you want to work at all? I'm amazed that they only have a 50% unemployment figure.
Hogan, satellite dish, brand new truck.
> more in common that is immediately evident
...more in common than is immediately evident...
Apologies to all! My figures in the previous post were too low...
The Skywalk has been viewed by visitors as overpriced, over-rated, and over-managed. The minimum price to access the Skywalk is $70-80 per person, including children. Charging $50 (plus a 7% tax) for the bus tour and access to the reservation, an $8 impact fee, $3 fuel charge, $30 parking fee, and then an additional $33 for accessing the Skywalk itself has been seen as a ripoff. After driving 18 miles down a very bumpy and unkept road, visitors are then asked to “park and wait for the bus”. No outside snacks or drinks are allowed on the tour, nor are personal cameras or purses.
>Hogan, satellite dish, brand new truck.
Sounds like the trailer parks up in my area.
Let’s see, Language (implies abstract thinking, planning and organisation as well as the ability to communicate), land to grow food and other raw materials and family members to help you defend it.
Yep, those are the best survival tools.
I suspect they have a strong and untaxed cash and barter economy to supplement their federal BIA welfare checks.
“Somebody told us Wall Street fell, but we was so poor that we couldn’t tell.”
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