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The Downfall of Detroit (Mark Steyn)
National Review Online ^ | July 19, 2013 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 07/19/2013 10:26:39 PM PDT by neverdem

It took only six decades of “progressive” policies to bring a great city to its knees.

By the time Detroit declared bankruptcy, Americans were so inured to the throbbing dirge of Motown’s Greatest Hits — 40 percent of its streetlamps don’t work; 210 of its 317 public parks have been permanently closed; it takes an hour for police to respond to a 9-1-1 call; only a third of its ambulances are driveable; one-third of the city has been abandoned; the local realtor offers houses on sale for a buck and still finds no takers; etc., etc. — Americans were so inured that the formal confirmation of a great city’s downfall was greeted with little more than a fatalistic shrug.

But it shouldn’t be. To achieve this level of devastation, you usually have to be invaded by a foreign power. In the War of 1812, when Detroit was taken by a remarkably small number of British troops without a shot being fired, Michigan’s Governor Hull was said to have been panicked into surrender after drinking heavily. Two centuries later, after an almighty 50-year bender, the city surrendered to itself. The tunnel from Windsor, Ontario, to Detroit, Michigan, is now a border between the First World and the Third World — or, if you prefer, the developed world and the post-developed world. To any American time-transported from the mid 20th century, the city’s implosion would be literally incredible: Were he to compare photographs of today’s Hiroshima with today’s Detroit, he would assume Japan won the Second World War after nuking Michigan. Detroit was the industrial powerhouse of America, the “arsenal of democracy,” and in 1960 the city with the highest per capita income in the land. Half a century on, Detroit’s population has fallen by two-thirds, and in terms of...

(Excerpt) Read more at nationalreview.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Politics/Elections; US: Michigan
KEYWORDS: detroit; marksteyn; mathis; motown; otismathis
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1 posted on 07/19/2013 10:26:39 PM PDT by neverdem
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To: PGalt; SunkenCiv; cripplecreek; JLS

Ping


2 posted on 07/19/2013 10:28:24 PM PDT by neverdem (Register pressure cookers! /s)
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To: neverdem

It’s amazing to me that a large city in this country has come to this.

Not just the bankruptcy...but (from what I have read) the utter devastation.

Of course there were towns in the past that became “ghost towns”...but this has to be one of the most exaggerated cases in our history.


3 posted on 07/19/2013 10:41:05 PM PDT by berdie
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To: neverdem

Maybe it is time to have a law that public employees can only be so employed for 10 years. No exceptions. And no retirement.


4 posted on 07/19/2013 10:41:47 PM PDT by healy61
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To: neverdem

Why beat a dead horse? Let Detroit rot. I sure as hell don’t want to bail them out. They got what they voted for.


5 posted on 07/19/2013 10:44:53 PM PDT by floridavoter2
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To: healy61
Maybe it is time to have a law that public employees can only be so employed for 10 years. No exceptions. And no retirement.

All that has to be done is to do away with the public retirement system. Public employees should contribute to their own retirement like that of the private sector.

6 posted on 07/19/2013 10:50:39 PM PDT by Wiggins
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To: neverdem
Odd. It took close to 62 years for the Soviet Union to finally collapse. How long is a pyramid scheme's shelf life?
7 posted on 07/19/2013 10:52:05 PM PDT by political1 (Love your neighbors)
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To: berdie
Haunting photos of the ruins of Detroit:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/gallery/2011/jan/02/photography-detroit#/?picture=370173054&index=0

8 posted on 07/19/2013 10:53:48 PM PDT by PghBaldy (12/14 - 930am -rampage begins... 12/15 - 1030am - Obama's advance team scouts photo-op locations.)
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To: Wiggins

Not to forget the privatization of as many public services as possible.


9 posted on 07/19/2013 10:59:36 PM PDT by Wiggins
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To: PghBaldy

http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/gallery/2011/jan/02/photography-detroit#/?picture=370173054&index=0

Copy and paste is your friend.


10 posted on 07/19/2013 11:16:10 PM PDT by Catsrus (`)
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To: floridavoter2
Why beat a dead horse? Let Detroit rot.

It's like a hard-core alcoholic, or a glue-sniffer. There's really not much else you can do.

11 posted on 07/19/2013 11:19:54 PM PDT by Mr Ramsbotham (Laws against sodomy are honored in the breech.)
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To: neverdem

A perfect Steyn column! Thanks for the post!


12 posted on 07/19/2013 11:27:51 PM PDT by JennysCool (My hypocrisy goes only so far)
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To: neverdem

bump

here is to an astounding leftist success story


13 posted on 07/19/2013 11:46:28 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: PghBaldy; Catsrus

Thanks...what a sad state of affairs.


14 posted on 07/19/2013 11:55:15 PM PDT by berdie
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To: neverdem

All the white firefighters were forced out and moved to other states like Florida, my retired FF hubby was telling me. He worked with many of them.


15 posted on 07/19/2013 11:55:59 PM PDT by boatbums (God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to Him.)
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To: Wiggins
"Public employees should be allowed to contribute to their own retirement like that of the private sector.

Fixed it. Many public employees would prefer not to contribute to the government plans, if they were not mandatory.
16 posted on 07/20/2013 12:16:27 AM PDT by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: berdie
Of course there were towns in the past that became “ghost towns”...but this has to be one of the most exaggerated cases in our history.

Ever wonder how it is we find all those cities buried underneath other long lost cities?

17 posted on 07/20/2013 12:18:44 AM PDT by itsahoot (It is not so much that history repeats, but that human nature does not change.)
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To: neverdem

A couple of weeks ago, I read an essay by a teacher in an all black high school. He posed a question to his students “ What happens if all the white people disappear?” The answer he got was “We’re (Black people) screwed!”. Detroit is what happens on a much grander scale, as most of the whites started leaving in August 1967.


18 posted on 07/20/2013 12:18:56 AM PDT by Artie (We are surrounded by MORONS)
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To: neverdem
To any American time-transported from the mid 20th century, the city’s implosion would be literally incredible: Were he to compare photographs of today’s Hiroshima with today’s Detroit, he would assume Japan won the Second World War after nuking Michigan.

hiroshima detroit

shanghai detroit

19 posted on 07/20/2013 12:43:59 AM PDT by Bon mots
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To: TheOldLady; Rummyfan; Howlin; riley1992; Miss Marple; Dane; sinkspur; steve; kattracks; ...

Mark Steyn ping.

Freepmail me if you want on or off the Mark Steyn ping list.

Thanks for the ping neverdem.


20 posted on 07/20/2013 12:53:29 AM PDT by JLS
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To: floridavoter2

“Why beat a dead horse? Let Detroit rot. I sure as hell don’t want to bail them out. They got what they voted for.”

Except that Detroit - as Steyn points out - is a microcosm of Progressive, Liberal-Democrat, Socialist controlled America. And in America, despite our desire to be free from such parasites, we are getting the government they deserve, too.

In the Detroit-area, people fear that the suburbs will die without a vibrant, vital Detroit. The truth is, the suburbs have been pulling Detroit’s weight and propping it up for decades. Detroit’s suburbs have been doing fine without a major city for years. They will continue to do just fine without Detroit.

The population center of the Detroit metro area stopped being in Detroit a long time ago. Last I heard, it was in Southfield, although Southfield is starting to show some of the same idiocy in its local politics that Detroit showed at the beginning of its demise. Some people just never learn.


21 posted on 07/20/2013 1:00:18 AM PDT by Stingray (Stand for the truth or you'll fall for anything.)
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To: berdie

birdie,
I have visited Michigan several times in the last decade and I refuse to go near Detroit much less give a damn if it dies and I believe most who value their health feel likewise


22 posted on 07/20/2013 1:59:01 AM PDT by Joe Boucher ((FUBO) ( Hey Rubio, eat pooh pal))
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To: neverdem

Municipal unions are killing the Cities all over America.

Besides that, uncivilized, criminal negros having extorted almost royalty-like privileges from society have doomed any institution or City they become the majority in.

As far as the Bankruptcy goes why not? Here in Syracuse we are blessed with a precious negro with 3 Bankruptcies under his belt that wants to run for Mayor. An expert I presume.


23 posted on 07/20/2013 2:53:11 AM PDT by exPBRrat
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To: berdie

“Not just the bankruptcy...but (from what I have read) the utter devastation.”

One of the employees where I worked got off at the wrong exit in Detroit and was murdered. Workers in Sterling Heights tell you to never pull up to the next car at a stoplight in Detroit. You must leave maneuver space in case a car-jacker walks up to your window. (Oh, and always, always, gun it and bash your way out as they tend to kill you regardless.) In the Sterling Heights parking lot you can pick up expended bullets fired from Detroit.


24 posted on 07/20/2013 2:56:26 AM PDT by Gen.Blather
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To: Wiggins
Most public employees do. They get 5% 401K matches as well as pensions. In most states their pensions are also state tax free. And they almost always get free health care starting at 50 or 55. So you see, pensions are only the start.
25 posted on 07/20/2013 3:21:12 AM PDT by poinq
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To: neverdem

Mark subbed for Rush yesterday. I was on a road trip and so listened to the whole thing, and almost all of the show was expanding upon and hammering home the general concepts covered in the column.

It was great!


26 posted on 07/20/2013 3:28:39 AM PDT by FreedomPoster (Islam delenda est)
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To: neverdem

Brilliant as always.


27 posted on 07/20/2013 3:55:22 AM PDT by Tax-chick (No pun intended, no punishment ... If I offended you, you needed it.)
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To: neverdem

Detroit....The Democrat Edsel City


28 posted on 07/20/2013 4:07:04 AM PDT by N. Theknow (Kennedys=Can't drive, can't ski, can't fly, can't skipper a boat, but they know what's best for you.)
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To: neverdem

Mo-town no mo’...


29 posted on 07/20/2013 4:54:39 AM PDT by newfreep (Breitbart sent me...)
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To: neverdem
Seen on Fox yesterday:

BREAKING NEWS: Detroit Declares Bankruptcy.

Yes, breaking news.

30 posted on 07/20/2013 4:57:18 AM PDT by St_Thomas_Aquinas ( Isaiah 22:22, Matthew 16:19, Revelation 3:7)
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To: Stingray

Why evade the OBVIOUS CAUSES? There are plenty of Leftist, Progressive run major cities worldwide and in the US w/ public employee unions that have managed to avoid becoming Mogadishu, so guess again the primary contributing factor....hint, hint, has a propensity to riot.


31 posted on 07/20/2013 5:00:30 AM PDT by iopscusa (El Vaquero. (SC Lowcountry Cowboy))
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To: neverdem

It has happened over and over for centuries.

The best example of that is just east across the river from St Louis ,Cahokia, a thousand or so years ago. A great city, larger than many European cities at the time (including London)

Bert’s rule: The kids move away,the old folks die


32 posted on 07/20/2013 5:03:28 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Travon... Felony assault and battery hate crime)
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To: neverdem

Detroit aka Western Zimbabwe.


33 posted on 07/20/2013 5:09:11 AM PDT by DownInFlames
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To: neverdem

Notown the new Chocolate city.


34 posted on 07/20/2013 5:10:33 AM PDT by midway1 (Inside every liberal is an American trying to get out)
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To: neverdem
From the comments in the original article

I guess no one asked "what are we doing that isn't working"?

Government officials NEVER ask this question. Instead what they ALWAYS say is "We didn't go far enough." When their redistributionist policies fail to produce what's promised (and they ALWAYS fail in that regard, BUT they buy

Unfortunately they never face any personal consequences from their stupidity. The honest working citizens are the ones who take it in the shorts, and they are the ones who have no recourse - best case scenario would be to decorate the lampposts with the council members who voted the fat pensions and cut off all payments for the parasties - work or starve. Never happen of course, the JBTs are there to protect the government not the citizens.

35 posted on 07/20/2013 5:13:53 AM PDT by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: healy61

Term limits for public employees ?
Good idea !


36 posted on 07/20/2013 5:14:40 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (NRA Life Member)
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To: exPBRrat
But...But...But...Mark Steyn compared DeToilet to Republics in Africa.

That's racist!

Now that we have an enlightened leader, we can learn a lot about the future of America by looking at these more noble African republics.

37 posted on 07/20/2013 5:21:33 AM PDT by Aevery_Freeman (We say "low-information" but we mean "low-intelligence")
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To: Gen.Blather

sterling heights is 8 miles away from detroit.. you must be talking about warren...


38 posted on 07/20/2013 5:22:34 AM PDT by joe fonebone (The clueless... they walk among us, and they vote...)
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To: USFRIENDINVICTORIA
Fixed it. Many public employees would prefer not to contribute to the government plans, if they were not mandatory.

I'll re-fix it for you. It's not about what public employees would prefer it's about what is best for all.

39 posted on 07/20/2013 5:24:37 AM PDT by Wiggins
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To: bert

Looking at the life span of a city as if it were a time-lapse movie, it could be compared to a specimen on a petri dish. Growing from a microscopic start to a full-blown circle and then as the circle increases, the center begins to rot. The edges are still ‘healthy’ but if the ‘specilmen’ is as rotten as Detroit, it has to collapse and go back to nature.


40 posted on 07/20/2013 5:26:09 AM PDT by maica (Welcome to post-rational America.)
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To: political1

“Odd. It took close to 62 years for the Soviet Union to finally collapse. How long is a pyramid scheme’s shelf life?”

Astute observation.


41 posted on 07/20/2013 5:28:49 AM PDT by pieceofthepuzzle
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To: neverdem

I like Steyn’s work. Most of the time, his stuff is brilliant. But how do you write a story on the downfall of Detroit without ever once mentioning the, um, 800-pound gorilla in the room?


42 posted on 07/20/2013 5:32:58 AM PDT by DSH
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To: political1

Outstanding observation.


43 posted on 07/20/2013 5:38:06 AM PDT by Tax-chick (No pun intended, no punishment ... If I offended you, you needed it.)
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To: poinq

>>Most public employees do. They get 5% 401K matches as well as pensions. In most states their pensions are also state tax free. And they almost always get free health care starting at 50 or 55. So you see, pensions are only the start.

Maybe that’s true in northern states. I am a public employee in Florida and I get NONE of those things. I’ve checked out the other municipal utilities in Florida and none of them get any of that. I’m sure that the rest of the south is the same.


44 posted on 07/20/2013 5:39:29 AM PDT by Bryanw92 (Sic semper tyrannis)
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To: neverdem

Let China buy Detroit. They will be buying low.


45 posted on 07/20/2013 5:39:32 AM PDT by keving (We get the government we vote for)
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To: neverdem; All

What city is next to go broke?
My bet is on Chicago.


46 posted on 07/20/2013 6:02:45 AM PDT by FBD (My carbon footprint is bigger than yours)
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To: Stingray
The population center of the Detroit metro area stopped being in Detroit a long time ago. Last I heard, it was in Southfield, although Southfield is starting to show some of the same idiocy in its local politics that Detroit showed at the beginning of its demise. Some people just never learn.

It seems that quite a bit of Detroit has migrated to Southfield. I've seen more of it in some of the other suburbs also.

47 posted on 07/20/2013 6:09:03 AM PDT by CASchack
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To: bert

The demise of old Cahokia is still something of a mystery. Present-day Cahokia, where I grew up, is rapidly going the way of Detroit.


48 posted on 07/20/2013 6:12:59 AM PDT by Southside_Chicago_Republican (If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.)
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To: Mr Ramsbotham
It's like a hard-core alcoholic, or a glue-sniffer. There's really not much else you can do.

But, to continue your analogy, you neglect them at your own peril.

49 posted on 07/20/2013 6:24:38 AM PDT by farsny
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To: FBD; Charles Henrickson

More likely, St. Louis.


50 posted on 07/20/2013 6:26:52 AM PDT by Cletus.D.Yokel
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