Travelers, Please Come to Portland … After We Clean Up the Place

By Eric Fruits, Ph.D.

If you get the Sunday New York Times, your Fathers’ Day edition had a very special message from Travel Portland, whose job is to convince people that the Rose City is a great place to visit.

Don’t get me wrong. Portland is a great place to visit. But, not right now. You see, we’ve got some issues to work out before we’re ready for visitors.

First, we’ve got to get the plywood off of our storefronts. But, unfortunately, every time that happens, a group of mostly peaceful rioters break our windows and loot our stores.

We’d love to have you eat in our restaurants. But, we can’t seem to hit the governor’s target vaccination rate, so you’ll have to order takeout or wait an hour for socially distanced seating. Oh, and make sure you bring a mask. We don’t fluoridate our water, but everyone needs a mask.

We’d love to have you see the sights. But, you have to have a taste for sitting in traffic. Our rush hour starts at about 2 PM and runs all the way past 6 PM. Just treat that as an opportunity to count tents and tarps. You might even catch a street brawl with transients beating each other with sticks.

As the ad says, “Come see for yourself.” Just give us a few years to tidy up the place first.

Eric Fruits, Ph.D. is Vice President of Research at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market public policy research organization.

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