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WV v. Florida, Round 2

Posted by JoAnn on September 23, 2009

PaycheckThe Census Bureau released its ranking of median household incomes for the 50 states. At first glance, my adopted state of Florida clearly beats my home state of West Virginia, but not so fast, my friends. Florida’s average household income in 2008 was $47,778, which trumps West Virginia’s $37,989. In fact, West Virginia was one of the lowest average household incomes in the nation, second only to … anyone? … anyone? … You guessed it! Mississippi, our proverbial buddy at the bottom.

But a closer look at the data reveals that Florida is the only state in the nation to actually see a drop in the median household income as compared to 2007. Yikes! West Virginia, while ranked at the bottom, exhibited a 2.5 increase over the previous year. Not too shabby during a down economy. Now factor in the difference in the cost of living. While the average West Virginian’s income is more than 20 percent less than a Floridian’s, the average Floridian’s mortgage is 40 percent higher than the average West Virginian’s. And while Floridians don’t pay an income tax, we more than make up for it in higher property and sales taxes. I’d almost be willing to call this one a draw, but I don’t like ties.

Our score after Round 2 is:

West Virginia — 2

Florida — 0

Results from Round 1:


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WV v. Florida – Round 1

Posted by JoAnn on July 6, 2009

US-News-World-Report_worst driversToday, I present WV v. Florida: the battle between my beloved home state and my sunny adopted state.

Last month, GMAC Insurance released the results from its annual National Drivers Test, which is given to more than 5,000 drivers from all 50 states and the District of Columbia and measures basic knowledge of driving laws. New York took the cake for deplorable highway habits. But when it came down to West Virginia versus Florida, West Virginia gets a pass while Florida … well … you failed. 

In a press release, GMAC explained that 20.1 percent of licensed Americans –  roughly 41 million drivers on the road – would not pass a written drivers test exam if taken today.  Most of have trouble with questions about yellow lights and safe following distances. I would guess this is where Florida got in trouble. I’m guessing that, along with the purpose of turn signals (yes, they have a purpose), helped tank Florida at 43 out of 51.

As for West Virginia, well you win this battle but not with flying colors. The Mountain State ranked 28th, which wouldn’t even get you a C in high school driver’s ed on a bell curve. If you want to know how you would do on the test, you can take it at Even better, after you’ve finished the quiz, GMAC has a driving game that teaches you how to dodge, deer, elderly people and aliens. Yes. You heard me right. Old people and aliens.

Our score after Round 1 of WV v. Florida is:

West Virginia — 1

Florida — 0

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