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upstate29650

Provincialism in South Carolina

Are we THAT bad?  

10 members have voted

  1. 1. Provincialism in South Carolina...real or imagined?

    • No! We march to the beat of our own drummer, but we welcome new people & innovation, regardless of where they're from.
      4
    • Yes, I'm afraid so..we have a long way to go to remove this image of our state.
      4
    • What are you talking about? I've never seen, heard, or experienced any of this!
      2


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This article in today's Greenville News talks about a high-tech company that wanted to relocate from California to SC. The current CEO has ties in the Greenville area as a former VP for Sealed Air in Duncan, and still maintains a home in Greenville. The article talks about how the Greenville Economic Development Corp. wasn't aggressive enough to lure his company, and in the end, chose Rock Hill. I suggest you fully read the article to get the full gist of what happened.

However, this did get me thinking. As a state, and as a state with a reputation to the "outside world" as being independant in our thinking, yet a little backwards, possibly even racist, and not an "economic powerhouse", how do we perceive people & companies that are not from here? How welcoming are we to a new neighbor that may be from Georgia, versus one from New Jersey? Do some whites look upon a new black neighbor as a "welcome addition to the community", or do they think, "Well, there goes our home's value!"?

I know I'm kinda all over the place here, but it all ties in together. It tells others...as well as ourselves what kind of people South Carolinians (as a group) may be like. Where are we as a state...someone trying to be a player in the national & worldwide community? Are we progressing, or is our "inherent" habit of being provincial hurting us?

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Well as far as the article is concerned, it really did seem as though there was a breakdown in communication somewhere along the line. I really hope this incident isn't some sign that Greenville may be getting complacent or "too big for its britches," being that 3D Systems isn't this huge, Fortune 500 or 1000 company and not worth the effort on Greenville's part. While I'm glad that the company still decided to relocate to SC, Greenville would have been a better match given the company's specialty.

However, I don't think that this article would suggest provincialism on SC's part, even though this thought was an extrapolation of what was perceived from reading the article. If the governor was on board and giving his full support for this project, as well as York County and Rock Hill mayor Doug Echols, then we can't be a "provincial" as what's being suggested here.

However, in some ways SC has certainly been known to be a "lone ranger" state of sorts, but the state is also beginning to realize that it just doesn't work. By the way, this is one area in which I credit Sanford, as he really wants to restructure our archaic state governmental system--even though our Legislature seems to be totally clueless on the matter (well not clueless...just selfish). But our state shouldn't be too proud to learn from other states. Some of our lawmakers desperately need to realize that cotton and textiles are no longer king around here and Charleston, and thus SC, is no longer the center of Southern wealth.

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Yes, SC was on board...as a state (Gov. Sanford) with luring this company here. The article makes that clear. It also suggests that maybe...just maybe, Grennville didn't "stroke" the ego of the CEO & his company to his satisfaction. I'm all for economic incentives to be used as a tool to lure solid, long-term companies that will bring a defined & definate economic boost to an area.

However, don't misunderstand. The thought to create this topic came to me as I just started reading the article. And yes, our state does evoke this kind of reaction with some who are not familiar with SC. Other factors, such as poorly performing schools & a large, but very unskilled labor force also play a role in some businesses not relocating to SC.

And your comment on SC needing to realize that cotton & textiles aren't king anymore is dead on! Our legislators need to realize that SC does need to adapt & change, as our nation & the world changes. This reminds me of my thread about doing away with Blue Laws. Times they are a'changing, and our leaders in the Statehouse need to realize that.

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However, don't misunderstand. The thought to create this topic came to me as I just started reading the article. And yes, our state does evoke this kind of reaction with some who are not familiar with SC. Other factors, such as poorly performing schools & a large, but very unskilled labor force also play a role in some businesses not relocating to SC.

I agree that Myrtle Beach isn't the ideal place to relocate a company. Being a student in the Horry County Schools system, the schools are doing better, but the learning environment and the work environment in Horry County won't create an image of students staying in Myrtle Beach (the successful ones, anyway). Most of the students in the school district will probably leave SC to places such as New York, New Jersey, Illinois, California, etc... Some will stay, but what kind of industry will they work in? Tourism?

Since Myrtle Beach is based (somewhat) solely on the service industry, a manufacturing company or other company would not find it desireable to move to the beach as the skilled labor in our county is largely unavailable. Not living in any other part of SC, I would assume the situation is similar in other areas.

Provincialism does bring up a topic. It is noticeable throughout Horry County the "Southern Pride" icons, such as the Confederate flag. I assume that this is to differentiate the "locals" from the "Northerners." Doesn't this make us more provincialistic than anything?

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It is noticeable throughout Horry County the "Southern Pride" icons, such as the Confederate flag. I assume that this is to differentiate the "locals" from the "Northerners." Doesn't this make us more provincialistic than anything?

Well, yes & no. The whole Southern Heritage movement can be found all over the South, to counteract the perception that Hollywood & northern states still see our region of the country as backwards. I'm looking for instances that specifically relate to South Carolina.

Here's an interesting case in point. Awhile back, some family I have in the N. Augusta area went into Augusta to do some shopping. At a local JC Penney's, they asked a sales clerk where the Gamecock merchandise was located (shirts, sweats, etc). The clerk snootily responded, "This is Georgia, we don't sell that stuff here."

Now Augusta serves as a focal point for retail for not just that side of the river. They also draw big numbers from neighboring Aiken Co, SC. In my mind, some provincialism was shown...but from Georgia.

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Well, yes & no. The whole Southern Heritage movement can be found all over the South, to counteract the perception that Hollywood & northern states still see our region of the country as backwards. I'm looking for instances that specifically relate to South Carolina.

Here's an interesting case in point. Awhile back, some family I have in the N. Augusta area went into Augusta to do some shopping. At a local JC Penney's, they asked a sales clerk where the Gamecock merchandise was located (shirts, sweats, etc). The clerk snootily responded, "This is Georgia, we don't sell that stuff here."

Now Augusta serves as a focal point for retail for not just that side of the river. They also draw big numbers from neighboring Aiken Co, SC. In my mind, some provincialism was shown...but from Georgia.

You're right.

It does seem ridiculous that they wouldn't sell Gamecock items there. :blink:

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Well, yes & no. The whole Southern Heritage movement can be found all over the South, to counteract the perception that Hollywood & northern states still see our region of the country as backwards. I'm looking for instances that specifically relate to South Carolina.

I don't think it can be blamed on the entire region, if you mean the South, as if it did, places such as Charlotte would not exist where 90,000 people have moved to in the last 5 years and companies continue to locate here. I think a lot of the blame can be placed right on SC itself.

As one that was born and raised in SC, I was also one of those left the state for greener pastures, though I did not have to go far. The opportunities for someone in NC are much better than they are in SC, and I put a lot of the reasons for that on the fact the schools are better in NC, and it is easier to get a college degree here than in SC. I am speaking in generalities of course and any one person can excel anywhere, but SC really doesn't foster an environment that would encourage companies to locate to the state.

I think the powers that run SC basically want to keep it that way. As long as you have a large population of uneducated, unskilled people, then it is easy to own businesses that pay low wages. This has been a formula that has existed in SC since reconstruction. It is a textile mill mentality that pervades much of the state and that of course ends up in the Legislature. I have even heard it said the state TEC system was designed to keep people from going to college to get a degree.

SC is the state that saved GW Bush's political career and I think that says alot about the state. (interpret that as you wish)

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SC is the state that saved GW Bush's political career and I think that says alot about the state.

Voters caring about fundamental religious beliefs is where it starts.

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Voters caring about fundamental religious beliefs is where it starts.

That's what messes up things definately. Religion is something that you hold dear to your personal life, but basing voting decisisons totally on moral, religious and social issues (especially when it comes to issues that don't directly involve you personally) isn't very smart.

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That's what messes up things definately. Religion is something that you hold dear to your personal life, but basing voting decisisons totally on moral, religious and social issues (especially when it comes to issues that don't directly involve you personally) isn't very smart.

:thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:

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That's what messes up things definately. Religion is something that you hold dear to your personal life, but basing voting decisisons totally on moral, religious and social issues (especially when it comes to issues that don't directly involve you personally) isn't very smart.

You cannot separate the two. Who a man is, is the sum of what he believes. To vote basing your decisions on something else, would be akin to hypocrisy.

In fact, I personally look at those issues first, and if all things are equal, then I look to something else.

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I don't think it can be blamed on the entire region, if you mean the South, as if it did, places such as Charlotte would not exist where 90,000 people have moved to in the last 5 years and companies continue to locate here. I think a lot of the blame can be placed right on SC itself.

As one that was born and raised in SC, I was also one of those left the state for greener pastures, though I did not have to go far. The opportunities for someone in NC are much better than they are in SC, and I put a lot of the reasons for that on the fact the schools are better in NC, and it is easier to get a college degree here than in SC. I am speaking in generalities of course and any one person can excel anywhere, but SC really doesn't foster an environment that would encourage companies to locate to the state.

I think the powers that run SC basically want to keep it that way. As long as you have a large population of uneducated, unskilled people, then it is easy to own businesses that pay low wages. This has been a formula that has existed in SC since reconstruction. It is a textile mill mentality that pervades much of the state and that of course ends up in the Legislature. I have even heard it said the state TEC system was designed to keep people from going to college to get a degree.

SC is the state that saved GW Bush's political career and I think that says alot about the state. (interpret that as you wish)

Excellent socio-economic analysis.

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Why does SC get credit for saving Bush's political career? He had the most votes of any U.S. President, so it wasn't just SC voting for him.

As for Bush's beliefs, I respect him as a Christian (I am one also), but unfortunately that doesn't necessarily make someone a good President.

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I understand better the beginning of this thread but reading all your posts I don't understand why you speak about religion and elections. I think you haven't the same acceptation of "provincialism". "Provincialism in South Carolina" is a provincialism in comparision with what city or state(s) exactly ?

In French there are three definitions for "provincialisme" :

1. pronounciation, use of a word or expression from a province which is not used in Paris.

2. (rare) "provincial" is opposed at "universal".

3. (old and derogatory) provincial mentality = reactionary mindset, non urban behavior.

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I understand better the beginning of this thread but reading all your posts I don't understand why you speak about religion and elections. I think you haven't the same acceptation of "provincialism". "Provincialism in South Carolina" is a provincialism in comparision with what city or state(s) exactly ?

In French there are three definitions for "provincialisme" :

1. pronounciation, use of a word or expression from a province which is not used in Paris.

2. (rare) "provincial" is opposed at "universal".

3. (old and derogatory) provincial mentality = reactionary mindset, non urban behavior.

It's probably in reference to our neighbors (Georgia and NC), who both have cities that are highly developed, urban in nature and known on a national level. Albeit we do have Charleston, which is known (slightly) on a national level, but it's more than likely due to it's historical significance and tourist culture.

The defintion of provincialism that this thread was started on is probably the 3rd one.

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It's probably in reference to our neighbors (Georgia and NC), who both have cities that are highly developed, urban in nature and known on a national level. Albeit we do have Charleston, which is known (slightly) on a national level, but it's more than likely due to it's historical significance and tourist culture.

The defintion of provincialism that this thread was started on is probably the 3rd one.

Yes, from Europe Charleston is the most famous city of South Carolina for the reasons that you say.

In France we have the same problem. Paris vampirize the country (in proportion imagine Washington with 50 millions people, etc.), the other cities are less knew.

Atlanta is too large to be a rival, at the contrary, take advantage of the "proximity" of Atlanta to "import" its renown and urbanity in favor of South Carolina. "Between Charlotte and Atlanta, the mountains and the sea : the Palmetto state makes you feel at home"... :shades:

The policy of "m

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Chtimi, could you expound on this statement: "Columbia in the center of the state can work with Greenville, Spartanburg and Charleston in order to create a polynodal city of more than 2.5 millions people, it is sufficient to benefit from a national recognition"?

As to one of the original points made in this thread, here is what one Greenville County councilman had to say about Greenville not landing 3D Systems Corp. (from greenvilleonline.com):

Re: the story about the tech company's CEO saying he didn't feel wanted in Greenville.

Sometimes the fish that gets away is an eel. When that happens, we ought to be glad our hook remains ready for something truly worth getting excited about.

And when the CEO of a company says, "we didn't feel Greenville wanted us in the worst way," I know that we are fortunate his company chose to go elsewhere and that we have saved our precious resources to attract other -- better -- economic engines.

I'm proud to live in a community where business leaders, like Jerry Howard of the Greenville Area Development Corporation, have the kind of self-confidence in our community that's needed to be selective about the businesses we will partner with. Economic development spending is, after all, a partnership with our taxpayer dollars being used to lure businesses in what is supposed to be a mutually beneficial relationship.

The CEO of 3D Systems Corp. clearly doesn't get that part. Too many companies prey upon communities like ours thinking they can get us to compete to throw more and more taxpayer money at them. And all too often the results fall short of the promises made ... or nobody bothers to track results.

It can't be any clearer that 3D Systems was seeking a handout but not a partnership. 3D Systems' CEO has much to say about his company's "goodies" (his term for taxpayer-funded incentives), but he was silent about what his company could deliver.

In years past, he should have expected to squeeze more out of our coffers with no effort. Those days are over. We can't afford to be indiscriminate about how we chart our course for economic development. As we do a better job of choosing partners wisely we must recognize that less-than-ideal corporate partners will self-select other communities.

Regrettably, there are meetings going among business and community leaders fretting over "What went wrong?" And there's the inevitable finger-pointing. And, most unfortunately, there's a sense of insecurity that goes along with seeing a company select another community. That attitude only breeds desperation that leads to bad decisions.

To me, the decision by 3D Systems is nothing but good news. It shows us that Greenville is not irrationally desperate, that we have a plan and priorities for our future development, and that we're committed to using taxpayer funds wisely and only with companies that will be full-fledged partners.

Comments, especially from Greenvillians (if they can tear themselves away from the Greenville subforum :P )?

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