I love Kentucky. I really do. But it frustrates me in many ways because it is a backwater state and there is a very good chance it always will be.
Our single biggest problem is that Frankfort is dominated and controlled by rural legislators who refuse to let Louisville and Lexington grow. They treat us like an ATM and little more. From this small town mindset comes a tax structure that is almost anti-business rather than business friendly, like say, Tennessee's. This legislature won't even empower Kentucky's city people to implement a small tax that the cities could use to improve infrastructure. Nope. These backwater politicians don't want anyone messing with their money.
We are, or were, the world capital of horse racing and breeding. But we're watching it slowly die as other states approve casino-type gambling at their race tracks. They can now pay bigger purses, which attracts better horses and trainers and therefore bigger crowds. Because of this rural bias against allowing the same type of gambling that the states surrounding us allow, we are watching our great horse business decline right before the world's eyes.
Until the legislators from the cities and larger metropolitan areas can come together and wrestle power away from the rural lawmakers, we are doomed to remain one of the poorest, least educated states in America. I love Kentucky, but I find these self-inflicted wounds to be needlessly heartbreaking.