Dr. Susan Block

In the Chatroom


  1. next
    02 · 3 · 11 @ 6:54 pm

    West virginia whites.. Outstanding :)


  2. bromeo
    08 · 1 · 10 @ 11:53 pm

    I’m oddly turned on and frightened at the same time. Women rule the world; they have that magnum cum laude, golden, spark shootin’ pussy all men want (exceptions of course). Yes thats my saying, paraphrased from some movie or comedian i heard. Behind every great man is…a woman, be it a wife, a mistress, or both, or worse…his mother. Men of power, who treat people poorly, its up to their women to use their charms to correct the situation, aka use your sex against him to steer him on the righteous path.


  3. Natalia
    07 · 6 · 10 @ 2:15 pm

    I guess you could call me one of those “utopian feminists” who believes that if women are in charge, everyone is better off, including the men. Your well-written article certainly made me think twice about my assumptions. However, I would have to say that if the White women were NOT in charge of this family, then they’d all have killed each other off a long time ago.


  4. George M
    07 · 6 · 10 @ 2:07 pm

    Fascinating piece, Dr. Block, about an oft-neglected segment of America. Now I have to see the movie!


  5. Elaine Purkey
    07 · 6 · 10 @ 1:48 pm

    Dr. Block, I sure hope you’re right about what people are seeing in that movie, but I’m afraid the majority of people who watch it are just watching it to “poke fun” at all of us poor, illiterate, stupid, violent, uneducated, … West Virginians who marry our kinfolk and have babies with them, living on welfare and raising families who will do the same. MOST OF US ARE NOT LIKE THAT. And I think it does a great disservice to those of us who are hard-working, decent, honest, Christian people who fight against violence and domestic disturbances that are portrayed in this film.

    The White’s are a “one-of-a-kind” family and have always been that way. Granted, they do have their own way of living and thinking about things but I think it started happening before Don Blankenship came on the scene. Don’t get me wrong, I think Blankenship belongs in prison where no key can be found with no door and no other way out. I think he is a thief and a murderer and I really hope he and his company get what’s coming to them. But there were other mining companies and businesses these people could have worked for over the years had they chosen to.

    Our young people are already changing their way of thinking because of the economic stress put upon our families by the current economic status of this country and the world. I really hate to see a movie created about a family so close to our area (I live in Lincoln County) that seems to validate their way of thinking. Things like this just tend to make young people think it’s ok to give up and get lazy and blame everybody and everything else for what goes wrong in their lives instead of getting out there and getting an education to do something else. That was possible for the Whites. Maybe not for D. Ray (Jesco’s dad), but certainly for his children and grandchildren.

    Many of us were out of work for many months due to the bad situations at all the coal mines in WV, especially in the Logan, Lincoln, Boone County area of the state. But we didn’t call it quits and crawl back in a cave and start breaking the law and pickling our brains to survive. NO! We took advantage of the re-training or we got other jobs until something in the mines came along. My husband worked for a year building the play areas in Chief Logan State Park for at that time $3.35/hr. Many of his friends that he worked with in the mines did the same. Some of them worked at fast food places and others delivered papers. One of his friends just gave up on the mines and went to work for a paper in KY and now is the editor of that paper.

    I don’t doubt that some of the White family are victims of changing times but their problem is that they just refused to try to change with the times to do anything better. I feel sorry for them because they are not dumb and they have wasted what could have been a much better life for them. I resent the fact that two people from somewhere else decided that this is what they wanted to show the world about West Virginians and have everyone thinking that this is the “norm” in our state.

    Both sets of my grandparents lived off much less than the White’s had to live on each month and they did alright. None of their kids ever went hungry. My Grandpa and Grandma raised 14 kids on practically nothing. When the democrats were in, Grandpa worked for the State Road but when the Republicans were in – he didn’t work at all because he was a political figure in control of a large block of voters who voted against them. He then picked up and went to the mountains and worked in timber and didn’t come home for weeks at a time. He had to do something to feed his family. He had an eighth grade education but he was willing to work and work hard! He and Grandma worked their land and raised most of what they ate and he did anything he could to make extra money for the rest. Who stopped the White’s from doing that?

    Thank you for writing what you did. Hopefully, many people will read it and not think that we are all a bunch of “White’s” living in this state. Can you imagine what damage that movie can do to our tourism? All because two guys wanted to make some money off (according to what you wrote) a poor disadvantaged family who happened to have the misfortune to be born and raised in rural West Virginia.

    Well, I was too and so was my husband and we manage to get by.

    Don’t you even wonder just a little bit about the rest of WV and how we survived? Do you think we are all as down-trodden as the White family?


  6. Shari Baby
    07 · 2 · 10 @ 8:55 pm

    Dr. Block, you’re so right on with everything you say…the women are in charge, in my opinion, because the corporate, money making, mine-owning, mafia ceo’s are killing our men who are poor and just looking to try to make a decent living to help provide for their families…and, these people will always and forever, be victim to the money making machine that rules their lives and their immediate world…on another note, you’re very sexy and such a great role model…kisses


  7. Robert McKinney
    06 · 29 · 10 @ 1:09 pm

    I’ve just recently moved to the Ozarks in southern Missouri after having lived in Japan for twenty-four years. Why the Ozarks? Low taxes and a very independent people who have no use for mega-Corporate robber barons and Congressional errand boys who are bought and paid for. There’s still a frontier spirit in the Ozarks – guns are common and churches. Women are rugged. The real estate agent I bought my home from owns a 300 acre cattle ranch. She’s twice divorced. One husband was an alcoholic. She’s a survivor. And she raised two or three kids of her own and now cares for a runaway grandchild.

    Corporations have been the ruin of this nation since the days of Upton Sinclair and before. When did “we the people” decide that corporations knew what was best for us?

    We are all like hourly wage slaves in some company town. And the Boss man will poison us, lie to us, tax us unfairly, and send us off to distant lands to fight his oil wars.

    What a joke.

    Good for the Whites of West Virginia. I hope they kick the Corporate goons right in their silk covered testicles.

    BP isn’t the first corporation to rape the American people. This has been going on for far too long. And the U.S. government, a bunch of asshole political parrots, keep singing the praises of such corporations, for campaign contributions of course and payoffs and perks.


  8. Nori
    06 · 28 · 10 @ 4:19 pm

    Thanks doc for pointing out the real issue. The Whites may be criminals, violent, vicious, and unscrupulous, but Massey and the corporate bottom line has killed far more people over the past few years, and destroyed more lives then the Whites ever have. That’s where the spotlight needs to be. Massey and the coal mining industry are the disease, the White and Greene families of WV are just a symptom. The question is how do you cure the epidemic? How do you instill ethics into corporate America? How do you make the fat cats and big wigs of our “Capitalism-esque” society be good moral people? The system isn’t broken, humanity’s broken!


  9. Susan Elizabeth Siens
    06 · 28 · 10 @ 1:44 pm

    Living in Appalachia as I do (tourists move here, then are shocked to find that they are, essentially, living at the northern end of Appalachia), people such as the Whites hold no charm for me. What interests me is the commonality between the people at the lowest end of our class system and the people at the highest end. They bear a great deal of resemblance to each another.


  10. Bran
    06 · 26 · 10 @ 10:54 am

    having seen the film, i have to say at first you laugh at them but long before the end you’re ready to cry, smile, break things and laugh WITH them. i, myself, found durkey and kirk to be my favorites, though billy is a g for takin so many shots and still having love for brandon poe. now if only we could get some of them on the show… just kidding.


  11. Michael Donnelly
    06 · 26 · 10 @ 10:37 am


    Jesco is a legend up here in Oregon! We used to watch the original Outlaw Dancer documentary up at Jawbone Flats, the mining camp we restored up at Opal Creek and used as HQ for our successful protection effort to get Opal Creek designated a Wilderness. 1st time I saw it I thought it had to be fake! Boy can that hillbilly dance! Watching it and reading Joe Bageant’s great book on this culture, Deer Hunting with Jesus (http://www.counterpunch.org/donnelly07092007.html, gave me a lot of respect for these folks.


  12. Imtiaz waris
    06 · 26 · 10 @ 1:56 am

    Great article Susan .Julian was also a nice guy,I had a nice conversation with him.


  13. BEN
    06 · 26 · 10 @ 12:07 am

    Hey Doc Block,
    Loved your review and insight into a dark world of poverty and violence, a forgotten world in our own backyard and yet I can’t help but somehow admire the Whites. Perhaps it’s their struggle against the more criminal corporate world that as always only looks at bottom lines, and if somehow they can’t make their financial projections, then they cheat, cook their books or just outright steal from both the rich and the poor. Funny, they make no distinction, one man’s pocket is as good as another. White on guys…
    Keep it up…Doc


  14. CeeBee
    06 · 25 · 10 @ 10:19 pm

    Awesome blog, Dr. Suzy. I could never imagine I would feel empathy for a bunch of rednecks, let alone a bunch of gun-toting ugly rednecks (though the pregnant gal is kind of hot), but now you got me with this one. Now I gotta see this movie. I haven’t wanted to see a movie about rednecks since Deliverance.


  15. Jerry Stalzberg
    06 · 25 · 10 @ 9:42 pm

    Dear Dr. Block,

    I’m going to see the movie, I listened to the radio show, pretty amazing stuff and a great review. By the way the radio show is always so much fun and full of information and of course some pretty hot sex.

    bless ya Dr


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