There Is a “Truck Line” Tearing America Apart

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


A few minutes ago, President Obama’s former “car czar” Steven Rattner tweeted the map below. Marcy Wheeler tweaks him for calling Hondas and Toyotas “imports” even though most of them are made in the US. I’d tweak him for saying the map shows the best-selling “cars” in each state, since it also includes trucks. Trucks aren’t cars.

But that’s enough tweaking. I’m willing to cut people a lot of slack on Twitter. Here’s what I’m curious about. You’ve no doubt heard of the famous “soda line” in America: in New England and the West, most of us call fizzy sweetened drinks soda. In the South, it’s coke. Up north, from Washington to the Ohio Valley, it’s pop.

Apparently we also have a truck line in America. In the Midwest and Mountain states, people buy Ford F-series trucks. In the Great Lakes region, the Chevy Silverado reigns supreme. Out West, we seem to prefer Dodge Rams.

What’s up with that? Is this just a weird coincidence? Or is there some genuine historical reason that different trucks are popular in different regions?

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate