Monday, July 23, 2012

We're Number One!

See that number 54 smack-dab in the middle of Oregon? Yep, that's little old Bend -- coldest town in the Lower 49 states at this moment (10 a.m. on July 23, 2012).

But no worries; it probably will warm up to 60 by late afternoon.

Meanwhile, Albuquerque's looking good at 80.


Duane from VA / WV said...

10 am? 9:15 am on bottom of the map?

being the July cool spot in the country sounds nice to me after 45 plus years living in the humid heat and humid cold middle atlantic.

I had never heard of Bend until April of this year when we started looking into places to relocate... and here it is July and we are about to spend a week there.. we are sick of humidity heat and bugs so bend sounds like a good place to relax and cool off for a few years???

so do you have a nice home? is that possible since you're and east side bender? ha ha

how about a house swap for a month or so to compare an eastern small town to western small town?

by the way your site is funny and interestingly refreshing after the relocation packet with it's 300 days of sunshine nonsense and many other fun facts about Bend I am sure you would get a chuckle over.

Duane from VA and WV

H. Bruce Miller said...

Duane: I spent the first 30 years of my life on the East Coast, so I know all about the heat and humidity of the summers there.

When the weather's pleasant in Bend it's delightful. Problem is, it's only pleasant for about three months a year.

We do have a VERY nice home, in a lovely, well-maintained older neighborhood with lots of trees and greenery. I'll be happy to show it to you if you're in the market.

Beware of buying a home that was built during the Great Bubble. The builders were slapping 'em together as fast as they could to cash in before the bubble popped. They don't call such houses "slammers" for nothing.

H. Bruce Miller said...

Re the apparent time discrepancy: I think they update the map every hour. So those were in fact 9:15 a.m. PDT temperatures. Not that it was much warmer in Bend by 10.

Marshall_Will said...

Slammers, hmm... somehow I had something different in mind? Further, I'd say not to purchase any home bought, built or REFINANCED during The Great Boom.

With their equity stripped, the seller's unrealistic expectations are more tenacious than fly paper. "It must be 'worth' this much because that's how much I borrowed AGAINST it!?" ( No thanks )

Great screen shot btw. Seen way too many of them. And just look how SF/LA and SD are continuing to languish. It cuts both ways you know. High cost of living, crowding, sucky traffic and NO chicks in bikinis in Cali can't feel any 'better' than their lack does here.

It speaks volumes Bruce was candid about our weather ( even when offered a clear ticket OUT ) Well played Sir. Haven't heard Lars in years, no longer a commuter but seeing a Mega-corp like Intel expand here is exactly what we don't need. The targets of the new knee jerk measures ( Sub S corps, Mom & Pop's, sole proprietors etc. ) don't have legions of bean counters nor lobbyists looking out for them.

What we're really looking at here is smaller firms being pushed to and beyond the breaking point, leaving mega-corp to swoop in and consolidate the crumbs. But seldom does it translate into actual organic growth. Certainly not for locals. Much in the same way former video store owners were able "to get jobs" with Hollywood and Blockbuster as they stormed stormed in.

H. Bruce Miller said...

Marshall: I don't think there are very many mom-and-pop computer chip manufacturers that are being driven out of business by Intel.

Back when Measures 66 and 67 were passed, I offered $25 to anybody who could produce ONE solid, verifiable example of a business, large or small, that had left Oregon because of those measures. I still haven't had to pay out. But the offer still stands, and you're welcome to take a shot at it.

H. Bruce Miller said...

Another word of advice to Duane: Don't base your decision to move to Bend on one week spent here during our brief good-weather period. Research the climate and the economy. Spend a week or two here in February, when we freeze our asses off -- and in May, when we're still freezing our asses off. Think seriously about how seven (or more) months a year of gray, dreary, chilly weather will affect you and your spouse (if any) physically and mentally. Think about the activities you enjoy and whether you'll be able to enjoy them here. (If you're not a real outdoor enthusiast, there ain't much to do -- and in the winter there ain't even that, unless you're into snow sports.)

Carl said...

Here is one, from a local company no less, that attributes 66&67 as major reasons to leave: "The economics of operating a business in Oregon was a significant factor in the decision to sell, O'Keefe told The Nugget.

"To be honest, Oregon has a very difficult business climate," she said.

O'Keefe said the decision was "absolutely tied to (tax measures) 66 & 67," which increased income taxes and taxes for some Oregon businesses."

Link at:

The question also needs to be asked as to how many companies looked at Oregon and said no way. I think that is the reason Buck Knives decided against OR and went to Post falls, ID.

H. Bruce Miller said...

I'm familiar with the "Working Hands" story. That wasn't a case of a company moving out of Oregon because of M66 and 67, it was a case of an Oregon company being bought by an out-of-state company and the out-of-state company deciding to consolidate operations at its headquarters -- a not uncommon decision.

"I think that is the reason Buck Knives decided against OR and went to Post falls, ID."

That's pure speculation. What I'm looking for is an Oregon business owner saying, "I moved my business out of Oregon because of Measures 66 and 67." And I ain't seen one yet.

Duane from VA / WV said...

looks like you guys have fun bantering back and forth?

Back to weather, I have spent time looking through the wunderground web cam monthly archives and I am certainly not seeing the 9 months of gloom and grey you claim on your blog. Last December was bright and sunny until christmas eve.

Maybe it is just perspective but Bend has a hell of alot more sun than my WV place and more than my VA place too. I guess boots on the ground in Bend trips will reveal the truth.

Sure I will never see this post on your Blog. Ha Ha..

Enjoy your time in Bend while your there and hope you find a warm sunny place to move.

Marshall_Will said...

Businesses Affected by 66 & 67 has their own Facebook page:

Shutting down business OPERATIONS isn't as simple as pulling out of the drive-thru. Everyone has their fiscal year to complete, leases already signed and boards that must be convened etc. The fallout will take years...

In terms of defining *high profile* exoduses, that train's already left the station. Fred Meyer left in the 90's, Boeing flew to Chicago and Freightliner, a mere shell of its former self. Phil Knight's threatened to leave and Les Schwab wishes they 'could'.

Then there's the Shock & Awe of this being ram rodded thru retroactively. They what..? So it wasn't even a matter of tax planning, preparing or altering your business model to contend w/ a changing environment. You're -already- screwed.

Insofar as start-ups? My wife's high tech firm had regular mass defections of engineers that did bootstrap start-ups w/ regularity. Yes, with 401k money, home equity loans and some very VERY maxed out credit cards. ( It's called having b@lls )

And for WHAT? Cr@ppy roads, dysfunctional public schools and feeding bloated pensions where the tick has become bigger than the dog? C'mon Bruce.

H. Bruce Miller said...

"Last December was bright and sunny until christmas eve"

We had an unusually warm and clear November and December last year.

"Maybe it is just perspective but Bend has a hell of alot more sun than my WV place and more than my VA place too."

Could be, but it has a lot less sun than many other places, especially in the West. Go to, look up Bend, scroll down to the graphs showing climate data and look at the one showing "sunshine." You'll see that except for a brief period in July and August, Bend gets considerably LESS sunshine than the national average.

H. Bruce Miller said...

Marshall: Businesses AFFECTED by M 66 & 67 isn't the same thing as businesses DRIVE AWAY FROM OREGON by M 66 and 67. Of course many businesses were "affected" by it.

And what's this about being "ramrodded through"? The measures were put on the ballot, the voters voted on them, they passed. They were no more "ramrodded through" than any other ballot measure is.

But as I've said before, this isn't a political blog, so I'm hereby cutting off discussion on M 66 & 67.

H. Bruce Miller said...

"Fred Meyer left in the 90's, Boeing flew to Chicago and Freightliner, a mere shell of its former self. Phil Knight's threatened to leave and Les Schwab wishes they 'could'."

Fred Meyer was bought out by Kroger. Boeing was a Washington company, not an Oregon company. I don't know about Freightliner. Phil Knight (a reactionary asshole) is always threatening to leave, so I place little stock in his threats. I don't know your basis for saying Les Schwab wants to leave, or what's stopping them from leaving if they wanted to. They just spent a bundle to build a new corporate HQ in Bend (replacing the one in Prineville); doesn't look to me like they're dying to get outta here.

H. Bruce Miller said...

Just looked at that Facebook page. The hammer-and-sickle logo is kind of a tipoff to its ideological bent. They've been pleading with people since 2010 to post stories about business being forced out of Oregon by those measures, but I didn't see one clear-cut case of it. Some coffee shop in Keizer closed? Some welding shop in Corvallis laid off an employee? Businesses close and lay off employees all the time. I want to see proof it was CAUSED by M 66 & 67

Duane from VA / WV said...

Yes I am sure you are spot on for much of the central and western high desert and mountain areas.

No doubt the 300 days of sunshine in Bend is a Chamber of Commerce PR tool. How about 250 days with sunny or partly cloudy?

Certainly comes down to perception, look up Elkins WV talk about cloudy and gloomy.

9 months of clouds would be too much for me too.

Enjoy your weather in Bend now, it has been one rough summer here. 90 to near 100 since mid June and humid humid humid. That's why I am inside on the computer on a Saturday afternoon.

At least no drought here. over 5.5 inches of rain just in July.

By the way does the river in Bend flood or dry up or is there a damn control flow?

H. Bruce Miller said...

"How about 250 days with sunny or partly cloudy?"

I'd say even that would be an exaggeration. Maybe 250 days with sunny, partly cloudy or mostly cloudy.

The Deschutes River, which runs through Bend, is regulated by dams. It never floods or dries up, although the flow gets pretty low some summers because of water being withdrawn for irrigation.