Rural Oregon’s Lost Prosperity Gives Standoff a Distressed Backdrop

Areas that were once economically important languish as jobs are clustered in urban centers, creating a feeling of powerlessness as their populations grow older, poorer and less educated.

Areas that were once economically important languish as jobs are clustered in urban centers, creating a feeling of powerlessness as their populations grow older, poorer and less educated…

These days, cities like Portland, Salt Lake City and Boise, Idaho, are gobbling up more of the jobs than ever, especially the good ones. Half the jobs in Oregon, for example, are now clustered in just three counties in and around Portland, according to a study by Headwaters Economics, a nonprofit research group in Bozeman, Mont. Almost two-thirds of Utah’s jobs are along the Wasatch Front, which runs from Salt Lake City to Provo.