Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Detroit

By now you have surely heard that the City of Detroit has declared bankruptcy.  I'm not sure how this will play out, but I can tell you that unless you visit Detroit (I have, I used to live in a Detroit suburb) you cannot believe the level of urban decay in the city.  Absolutely amazing.

Anyway, I found the following article to be very interesting.  From the Economic Collapse blog:
"25 Facts About The Fall Of Detroit That Will Leave You Shaking Your Head" by Michael Snyder
http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/25-facts-about-the-fall-of-detroit-that-will-leave-you-shaking-your-head

So much material here.  Some of the best points from the article follow.
Once upon a time, the city of Detroit was a teeming metropolis of 1.8 million people and it had the highest per capita income in the United States.  Now it is a rotting, decaying hellhole of about 700,000 people that the rest of the world makes jokes about.
3) Back in 1960, the city of Detroit actually had the highest per-capita income in the entire nation.
4) In 1950, there were about 296,000 manufacturing jobs in Detroit.  Today, there are less than 27,000.
7) At this point, there are approximately 78,000 abandoned homes in the city.
8) About one-third of Detroit's 140 square miles is either vacant or derelict.
9) An astounding 47 percent of the residents of the city of Detroit are functionally illiterate.
10) Less than half of the residents of Detroit over the age of 16 are working at this point.
12) Detroit was once the fourth-largest city in the United States, but over the past 60 years the population of Detroit has fallen by 63 percent.
Detroit is only just the beginning.  When the next major financial crisis strikes, we are going to see a wave of municipal bankruptcies unlike anything we have ever seen before.
And of course the biggest debt problem of all in this country is the U.S. government.  We are going to pay a great price for piling up nearly 17 trillion dollars of debt and over 200 trillion dollars of unfunded liabilities.
Not mentioned in the above article is how Detroit reached this state.  Here's a clue, from the Toledo Blade:
"Detroit mayors all Democrats since 1962" by Tom Troy
http://www.toledoblade.com/news/2013/07/28/Detroit-mayors-all-Democrats-since-1962.html

Detroit last had a Republican mayor in 1962.  That Republican, Louis C. Miriani, only became mayor automatically (because he was the city council president) after the death of Mayor Albert Cobo, although he was elected in 1958.  Seems as though Mr. Miriani was not an effective mayor, and "was convicted in 1969 of evading federal income taxes, failing to pay taxes on $261,000 in income. He served 294 days in prison in 1970 and 1971 and died in 1987 at the age of 90 in Pontiac, Mich."

Wow, the voters in Detroit sure know how to pick losers!

This article, from Canada Free Press, sums it up well:
"Detroit:  Monument to Liberalism" by Joy Tiz
http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/56720
Detroit is a monument to what liberalism can accomplish. It’s been run by Democrats since 1957. The last Republican mayor of Detroit was elected in 1957. Only one Republican has been elected to the city council since 1970.
Can you imagine the hue and cry had the Republicans been running a city that managed to drive itself into bankruptcy and lose 63% of its population? Democrats are still trying to figure out a way to blame the fall of Detroit on George W. Bush. 
Detroit is the perfect example of what you get when you leave liberals in charge long enough. It won’t be the last to fall. The question now is, how much of our money are Democrats going to waste on trying to bail it out using more of the same liberal policies that destroyed it in the first place.
A talk radio show host put it like this:
"Detroit is what happens when you let liberals run everything long enough."  - Mark Belling, radio show, July 18, 2013


Late addition to this post.  Here is the take of someone who saw the problems first-hand.  These problems are not unique to Detroit, of course.  They happen any time you get large bureaucracy, people with a sense of entitlement, etc.

From the Wall Street Journal:
"Bill Nojay: Lessons From a Front-Row Seat for Detroit's Dysfunction"
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323829104578623422748612116.html?mod=djemEditorialPage_h