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Is moving out to the country a good idea?
From my own personal experience of growing up and living in the country out here in the state of Texas, I would be biased to it and highly recommend it! But setting my opinions aside, I do question the long term practicality, or better yet the viability (as I will get into later), for anyone moving to or living in the country (as in rural land) right now.
I’m sure some of you’ve seen the, “let’s move out to the country, y’all!” and other innawoods tropes from the life style vloggers and dooms day schizos of YouTurd. There’s also the romanticism of country life combined with homesteading too, which rarely ever pans out in the way you would expect.
There’s certainly an appeal to it though, which I can’t deny! Better air quality, less traffic, less noise, less crime, and maybe a better view so long you didn’t move next to a stockyard or trailer park. Things can often be a lot cheaper too in the country, but for all the benefits listed, there are also pitfalls; two of those being job availability and abysmally low income.
It’s common to see people which move to or already live in the country maintain a job in the city that’s unrelated to their life in the country, which is what I'm doing right now! There are those that mooch off of others and some living on social security, but most everyone else make a daily commute to and from their jobs because they depend upon it to sustain an otherwise unsustainable way of living. As it stands today, most homes out in the country or in the little rural town ain’t nothing more than a bed room away from the riffraff of city life, making this “country life” thing into a LARP; and it’ll very likely become an impractical luxury in the coming decades for those that never spent the time to properly adapt themselves to living in the country.
You can certainly get your chickens, your sheep, your farm dogs, and plant a garden out back and all that fun stuff, but the sad fact of the matter is that most people today have zero knowledge or appreciation in the etiquette of properly maintaining livestock and produce that’s worth selling, let alone worth eating. Unless you’re rich or born into it with lots of land and know exactly who’s butt to kiss and how to kiss it, small scale agriculture isn’t going to cut the bread under most circumstances without undergoing radical changes in your way of life, which I think most people moving out to the country forgo because it typically isn’t necessary.
If you ever looked at US census records up to the 1950’s, nearly everyone living in the rural country reported as working farm and ranch hands. That’s all gone now. Living out in the the country in olden times wasn’t for the faint hearted. You had to take part in a community as well as posses a strong character to persevere, which are both things I don’t see in the country today. Do you really believe that keeping a gas generator, a few solar panels, a deep freezer and a weekend trip to ShartMart is adapting to country life? Think again as states across the US gradually phase out the sale and operation of internal combustion engines in a push toward “sustainable” and “climate friendly” non-alternative substitutions. I guess that means e-bikes will be the future?
There are many cities undergoing tax funded infrastructure changes to promote walkability and bike / scooter based transport. Though these forms of transport are far more common in nations outside the United States, the gist of it is to emulate the city planning of those nations, since the days of car dependence sounds like it may be coming to an end. While the cities are slowly preparing for it, I don’t see anyone living out in the country preparing likewise. Country folk often seem a little oblivious to these kinds of things, until the day it comes knocking on their front door.
For those of you thinking of moving out to the country or already living in the country, you should probably ask yourself “where would a future in limited access to transport or no transport at all might leave me or my family?” Probably right back in the city!
I don’t believe cars are going to be just outright pulled from under everyone's feet in the matter of a few years, but it would gradually become such an inconvenience that keeping a running car around just won’t be very practical. Fuel prices can be jacked right back up and replacement parts from remote nations difficult to obtain due to wars, sanctions, and tariffs; vehicle prices made unreasonably expensive as fleet rentals replace ownership; car inspections and emission requirements made more strict and license renewals to include unforgiving re-examinations. I’m sure your job in the city would be most understanding of you rolling in late because your old monster truck clunker broke down for the hundredth time.
To conclude, the age of prosperity in the US has waned. Given the contempt expressed toward automobiles by those which rule with fear and ruled by fear, I don’t think cars are going to continue to be around like they are today, which can be quite impacting. I don't agree with it, but I don’t believe there’s a choice either. If you truly want to live out in the rural country long term, then you might want to consider learning how to adapt for a future of less car travel and more subsistence farming, or just go back to the schity!
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