The blog has three posts: one from 2016, one from 2017, and now one from 2018.
The 2018 post is called Greg Strandberg for Missoula Senate District 49.
I put it up – and I’m putting up this post today – for a very simple reason: I want voters to get to my site and hear the issues straight from me.
And it’s working!
Since absentee ballots began hitting the mailboxes on Monday, my website’s traffic has gone up by a couple hundred unique visitors a day.
The amount of referral traffic from Google has gone up substantially.
Why? Simple – people are typing in “Greg Strandberg Missoula” or some permutation of that, and they’re getting here.
And when they get here they can see the articles I’ve written, the books I’ve published, and get a brief bio of who Greg Strandberg is and what I believe.
Neither of my two opponents in this race can say the same.
Neither has a candidate website, and neither has a Facebook candidate page. And I think that’s a big disservice to voters.
- How are people supposed to figure out what you stand for?
- How are people going to figure out what you’ll do for them?
- Why should anyone give a damn about you?
I wish more candidates would tell people how they feel, but I suppose when you can just raise thousands of dollars and send out tons of junk mail, why bother?
While my opponents will go the money route, assaulting you with their partisan propaganda while delivering empty promises, I’ll take a different tact.
I’m just going to tell you what I think, and if you like it…great! If not…oh well. I’m not going to get all wishy-washy and flip-floppy just to win a couple votes.
That’s just not authentic, and it’s not who Greg Strandberg is.
Who I Am, What SD 49 Is
So who is Greg Strandberg…and where the hell is SD 49?!?
Well, I’ve been writing about politics on this site for four and a half years.
I first lived in SD 49 from 2001 to 2003, and then again from 2013 to 2016. I have a degree in History from UM and I was a teacher in China for 5 years.
Currently I have 3 to 4 to 5 part-time jobs...depending on the season.
- I work at UM for sporting events;
- I have a job inventorying used vehicles a few days a month;
- I sometimes deliver court papers to people not paying rent or child support;
- I work at a downtown bar as a barback/bouncer;
- I work at the Kettlehouse Amphitheater during the summer.
And to be honest - I wouldn't mind adding another job as we get into summer. Work doesn't scare me.
Back in January 2014 I detailed SD 49, showing you a map of what it looked like:
As you can see, it’s big. It takes up most of the rural west of Missoula while also having a bit of the urban core around the river.
The areas that are currently flooding in Missoula are all in SD 49.
Let’s get into some details about this district.
Population and Households in SD 49
- There are over 10,700 households in the district, with a population of about 24,000.
- 32% of the people in SD 49 are married, while 38% of households contain just one person.
- 26% of the households in my district are headed-up by a single mom, while 12% are run by a single dad. 79% of the households in my district don’t have children currently living there.
- 16% of all SD 49 households are receiving food stamps.
Income and Education in SD 49
- 16% of the households in my district make less than $20,000 a year. Another 16% make between $30,000 and $36,000 a year.
- Just 15% of households make the median Montana income of $39,000 to $46,000 a year.
- 8% of the households in my district make over $80,000 a year, while 11% make $130,000 to $150,000 a year.
- SD 49 is educated, with 93% holding a high school diploma and 40% of those having a post-secondary degree of some sort.
Employment and Industries in SD 49
- All that money doesn’t mean it’s any easier to retire, however. 50% of those aged 62 to 64 are still working in SD 49, while 35% of those 65 to 69 are still working. Just 9% of those in their 70s are still employed.
- The largest employment sector for SD 49 is administrative, taking up 15% of all workers. Next is sales, with 13%, followed by food service at 10%.
- The largest industries in SD 49 are retail, taking up 15% of all people employed in the district, followed by healthcare, which is also 15%. Next is the hospitality industry, with 13%, and then education at 10%.
My Montana Writings
Probably more info than you needed, or wanted. But hey…I find this stuff quite interesting. It’s probably why I’ve taken the time to write 7 history books about our state.
I think it’s important for us to know who we are. Makes it easier to know where we’ve been and where we’re going.
I’m not sure Montana is moving in the right direction for many of the households in SD 49.
I’ve been trying to make this clear for many years now, and here are some of the more memorable articles I’ve put up to do that:
Hopefully those 22 articles will give you an idea of who I am and what I think.
Whether you want to dig into me and my ideas or not is up to you. Perhaps after doing so you’ll want to vote for me. Maybe you’ll vow to never vote for me…I dunno.
Perhaps you’ll fall back on the old, reliable standards – Democrats and Republicans.
Personally, I think those two parties are mostly concerned about themselves, not you or your family.
Most of all, I wish we had better jobs in Montana and that the wages were higher. I wish more jobs offered benefits and healthcare and time-off.
I wish our young people didn’t have to pay so much for school, only to be forced out of the state just so they can pay off their loans.
Montana is good at exporting its young – it’s a big reason we have a worker shortage right now.
We’ve got serious problems in the state and in the city and county of Missoula. We need to talk about these and find solutions.
If we don’t, it’s only going to become harder and harder for regular, working people to live here.
That’s not what this state is about, and I hope we can change that.
Your vote this year will help.