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HARLEY DAVIDSON AND THE AMERICAN EMPIRE

First on the list today is another Kingman note. Beale Street, one block north of Route 66, is fast becoming the heart of the historic district. It is also often overlooked by fans of the old double six.
Chillin’ on Beale Street and the Street Drags have put this street with its historic buildings and wide array of new businesses in the spotlight. Then there are the “First Friday” activities that center around the gallery at Beale Street Brews on the first Friday evening of each month.
In addition to introducing a new artist there is live music, vintage cars, good food at Redneck’s Ba-B-Que, and sidewalk tables for sharing pleasant conversation over a glass of wine from the Wine Cellar or a warm beverage from Beale Street Brews.
The next time you motor west take a slight detour and discover one of Kingman’s best kept secrets. And if that visit happens to take place on the first Friday evening of the month prepare yourself for an enjoyable evening that will most likely delay your travel plans and lead to a delightful weekend.
Now for the story of the day – iconic Harley Davidson is moving into the Indian market in a move reminiscent of an era when Packard was the worlds preeminent luxury car and Ford was truly king of the hill. At the same time GM’s largest market is now China.
For me the Harley Davidson story was tinged with somber tones. This “they get Harley’s we get mango’s” trade deal appears as the ghost of Christmas past further enhancing an unshakable feeling that the United States is rapidly following in the footsteps of the British empire during the post war period.
During the years between the world wars the American auto industry dominated the international markets. In Australia during the heady days of the 1920s when wool prices were soaring to incredible heights Packard out sold Rolls Royce. Throughout much of the British empire the story was the same.
It was engineers and body dies from American Bantam that were the cornerstone for Datsun. Shortly before 1920 an industry study found that three of every five automobile on the road in the world were Ford built.
My how times change. Here is to Harley Davidson and keeping the tradition alive.

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