In December we saw a story indicating that the financial crisis in Detroit municipal government had reached a level at which certain areas of the city would no longer receive government services. There would be no trash pick-up and no police or fire response to certain neighborhoods.
Abandon Blocks 12 Through 20 To the Zombies
If that doesn't conjure up images of Snake Plissken in "Escape From New York," I can't imagine what would.
Today we've got this interesting tidbit emerging from Motor City:
Half of DPS Schools Will Close. Class Sizes Up to 60+
How did this happen?
The evidence is pretty clear. You've got a largely industrial city in an industry which once had no serious competition. The unions are entrenched and the demands for wages and benefits are unrelated to economic realities of business. Minorities flock to the area to feed on the lucrative job opportunities. The core tax-payer upper income base flees the city for suburbs and other areas.
The automotive world shifted considerably as cars got smaller, quality became a major issue and foreign companies invaded the market with a better product for less money. That doesn't stifle the union's demands though. They continue to control the core industry and the ratio between productive workers and tax-dependent citizens begins to erode. Corruption in elected officials ensues. Crime erupts and as the region declines, productivity flees and governmental dependence grows. Departures exceed arrivals throughout.
State and federal money flows into the city to prop up the electoral base and insure support for liberal and progressive pols. The process accelerates.
So what do we have now? A down-sized industry struggling to be competitive in a global marketplace. A dumbed-down population which is incapable of supporting itself and dependent upon external redistributions for survival. A corrupt administration at all levels. Large chunks of the metro area effectively abandoned to blight and the remainder offering substandard services. Not a Mecca for a renaissance.
Scientists create conditions in controlled environments to observe outcomes. The lab uses a Petri dish to grow the molds and bacteria and then observe the outcomes. Detroit is the Petri dish of the nation.