While traveling the US and occasionally taking the back highways one might have seen an interesting trend. That is the proliferation of the Lawn Garden tractors. They are everywhere and on any weekend you can see their owners mowing the grass. Previously fewer people had garden tractors but right after 9-11 everyone decided to stay home more and so they invested in things they wanted around the house, like BBQs and garden tractors. The manager of the Wal-Mart Super Center in Witchita Falls, TX said we have about 50 garden tractors out side for sale at any one time and they turn over quickly. We checked the prices and they are very affordable. You can peruse Wal-Mart's online catalog at Walmart.com and see the selection.
Now we took some back roads and highways on our last trip from coast to coast to see America and Home Town Americana and what did we see? We counted in TN, AL, VA, NJ, LA, MS, TX 143 people riding garden tractors, actually on them as we passed mowing the tall grass. Now these garden tractors are not free even though they are a good bargain. With the Spring bringing rain and lawns growing fast, there are many lawns which have grown tall, and they must be mowed to prevent tall grass growing and dying. If you have cattle or goats, then they can eat it down to where it needs to be, but if you want it have a manicured lawn then you must get one of these killer little units, most are made here in America. As well as many of the parts, which is good for manufacturing jobs stateside. Sales for garden tractors are strong and top out the profit margin for categories at Wal-Mart. This is an incredible plus for little towns like Statesboro, GA where Briggs and Stratton has a plant, which produces small engines. It is good for our steel industry and automotive sector parts makers, which can also build tractor parts rather than laying off people.
Why is this good for America? Why is it not? Well it is good because it prevents grass from getting too tall and becoming fire hazard. It is good because it uplifts Americans and gives them a sense of pride in their property, helps with an ownership society buy-in attitude and perhaps will help them decide to finally get rid of those average of 5 non-running cars in the backyards rusting and polluting ground and well water of our small towns. It helps people care for their homes and their families by doing something positive at home. Homes and BBQs and family has become a greater priority since the mass media hysteria striking unnecessary fear in the American Public post 9-11.
Why is it not good for America? Well we have lots of mulch and grass clippings which if set aside produces methane gas, tons of it is released into our atmosphere. If it is covered, which normally it is not, the methane gas from the dead grass could be recovered and used for biomass fuel. It is not good because push mowers are better for your health, because it gets you out and about and helps you stay fit; although with the high humidity in the Midwest and East Coast States perhaps that might cause problems with heat stroke. Either way a ride on lawn mower is not a luxury anymore, America has made it a necessity and that means jobs, that means more beautiful homesteads and happier family life and time to watch the ball game because the "Honey Do's" just got that much easier while sitting back and driving on the grass. It saves a lot of money too, because if you think you want to cruise into town in you pickup or SUV it is going to cost you $3.00 per gallon and $20.00 round trip minimum. From the back roads of America, that is our report. Drive safe; drive a garden tractor. Think about it.
"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs