The federal government owns large tracts of the western states: from a low of 29.9% in Montana, already more than the national average, up to a whopping 84.5% in Nevada.The rough beauty of the American West seems as far as you can get from the polished corridors of power in Washington DC.

This seems remarkable when compared to the measly 4% in the Mid-Western and Eastern US. What is really disturbing is that the Bureau of Land Management is again in the West scouting for MORE land to put under "Federal Protection."

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