Column: Modern economy has reshaped definition of thriving community


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Thanksgiving weekend sees most of us huddled with three or more generations of family. That makes these holidays a good time to think about long-term economic changes and how they affect us.

For example, let’s think a bit about where economic development occurs. Let us begin by picking two dates 70 years apart, say 1940 and 2010.

In 1940, about one-third of all U.S. workers were involved in manufacturing, another 15 percent in agriculture, 5 percent in providing energy and more than 10 percent in moving goods. Altogether, about 65 percent of folks worked in industries in which most of the goods produced were “exported” to places outside of where they lived.

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