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LETTERS: Feb 18th Issue

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Love Notes

To Kelli M, RCC Art Star: I’m wildly in love with you.



RE.: Crater Lake Wilderness Proposal

Ryan: Appreciated your recent story that mentioned our study on federal lands and county growth. We just updated it.

A study released this week by Headwaters Economics found that rural counties in the West with more federal lands or protected federal lands performed better on average than their peers with less federal lands or protected federal lands in four key economic measures.

Summary: From 1970-2014, western rural counties with the highest share of federal lands on average had faster population, employment, personal income, and per capita income growth than their peers with the lowest share of federal lands.

Similarly, from 1970-2014, counties with the highest share of protected federal lands on average performed better for population, employment, personal income, and per capita income growth than those with the least protected federal lands.

Some rural counties are struggling and are searching for ways to benefit from nearby federal lands. While every county has unique circumstances, the changing economy of the West has impacted all counties and altered the role and importance of nearby public lands

– Chris Mehl, Headwaters Economics



by Alex Hall

Hey Messenger: Are feminists supposed to vote for Hillary because she is a woman? Am I not a feminist if I vote for Bernie? What do I do?

Dear Confused Feminist: Lizzy Acker recently wrote a piece for her column “Just Lady Things” precisely on this topic, found in the February 10 issue of Willamette Week. It was titled, Bernie Sanders has my head but Hillary Clinton has my heart. I imagine that this is how you are feeling right now. I totally understand this sentiment, but at the same time, there is a reason Guinevere chose King Arthur over Lancelot. If Bernie Sanders is your King Arthur because you think he would make a better leader for this country, then you should vote for him. In terms of feminism, I have just one question for you: Were you not a feminist in 2008 when you refused to vote for Sarah Palin’s ticket? Of course not! This would be absurd.

Hey Messenger: What distinguishes “value” from “price?”

Cheers, Clay

Dear Clay: I hate to kill the potential philosophical fun here but the answer to your question is quite simple from an economic standpoint. Value drives demand, while price is determined by supply and demand and is in fact the point at which they meet. This is called the equilibrium point. Demand is the dependent variable in this equation, while the supply is the independent variable. Of course, companies can enact various strategies to influence individuals’ concepts of value, which we know as marketing. If they are successful and supply runs low (or out), prices go up. This is precisely what Karl Marx had such a problem with- the idea that commodities can be “fetishized” by the market.

Applying this philosophically, we can easily see that value has more- value. It can originate in one’s heart, while price never can. This remains true even if Marx was right about literally everything he ever said. However, he probably wasn’t.


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