Saturday, July 20, 2013

What happened to Detroit?

Kevin D. Williamson writes at National Review, comparing Chattanooga and Detroit.

“[Detroit] has for years proved unable or unwilling to provide the basic services people expect from municipal authorities: While political cronies got fat, the people of Detroit were left with some of the worst schools in the country, some of the most dangerous streets in the country, and a mass-transit system that is a non-functioning mess. Not that you’d want to start a business there, but if you did, its licensing and regulatory agencies run the gamut from incompetent to corrupt.

So the people of Detroit went on strike. They did not picket city hall or demand a sit-down with the mayor. They packed up and left, taking their businesses, their innovation, and their tax dollars with them. The powers that be in Detroit can rob people blind, but they cannot make them stay.  As a result of this, Detroit has lost nearly two-thirds of its population. . .

Of its $11 billion in unsecured debt, the great majority — $9 billion — is owed to pensions and health-benefit plans for the same public-sector incompetents who helped bring the city to its knees in the first place. Detroit’s ruling class is a parasite that has outgrown its host.“

On the 40th anniversary of the 1967 Detroit riots, from which the city never recovered.

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