I made an argument a while back here that problems associated with Native American reservations, and the meth belt centered in Missouri can be largely talked about like developing state problems, and helped by improved access to the sea. Aid Watch has posted some nice charts that seems to hold up the first argument some degree, and not at all the second argument. Since it seems poverty in America is far more focused in the South than in the Great Plains.
Health index (pale pink BAD, brick red GOOD)
Proportion of white females with less than high school education (dark blue HIGH, pale blue LOW)
I am honestly surprised that the great plains do so well, and it does bring up real questions as to why the US government has so utterly failed the native population of that area. I’m also quite surprise that after the renaissance of Charlotte, Atlanta, and Washington DC, the countryside surrounding the three cities in Virginia, North Carolina, and Georgia still look as bad as anywhere else (the area around DC looks better but it hasn’t spread to the whole of Virginia, as is the case in Flordia).
The statistics point to poverty in America less being a question of landlocked versus coastal areas, and more being a question of which areas lost a war 150 years ago.