Water Wars Brew Here

I grew up in the 1960s, and back then the popular myths defining the American West were pretty clear-it was the land of opportunity, a region of dreams, the place those poor Southern mountaineers in “The Beverly Hillbillies” headed after they struck oil. Marc Reisner’s now classic 1986 study, “CADILLAC DESERT: The American West and its Disappearing Water,” moved the...

The Battle for Sugar Tit

One night soon after I first returned to Spartanburg in 1988 I was sitting in a bar out near the Westgate Mall and there was a guy next to me who wore his hair in a mullet and had boots made out of reptile skin. He still had that Marshall Tucker Band “Long Hard Ride” look going ten years after the album, and it was even topped off with a cowboy hat. His accent was deep and...

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