Look familiar? It should -- Bellingham is a city much like Salem, only it has done a far better job engaging with the threat of peak oil. Image via WikipediaSalem and Marion County are falling further and further behind those cities and counties that have taken seriously the government's obligation to do more than act as a servant to business as usual and to instead help people anticipate and prepare for challenges ahead.
For example, Transition Bellingham will be presenting its report to the City of Bellingham and then to Whatcom County (large pdf file). Salem and Marion County, in contrast, misunderstand the current economic challenges, thinking them to be temporary aberrations in an overall ever-growing economy rather than the first concrete evidence that a social and economic model of continuous growth necessarily collapses, not when resources run out, but as soon as the expanding energy resources needed to power continuous expansion become constrained.