Skip to comments.Detroit vs. Houston: Laboratories for Liberalism, Conservatism
Posted on 07/29/2013 3:00:52 PM PDT by xzins
Liberals incessantly claim fealty to science, while falsely caricaturing libertarians and conservatives as the ones stubbornly ideological and averse to real-world facts.
Scientific method, however, involves objective observation and testing beliefs against results. In that vein, it is liberals who prove habitually impervious to facts and the disastrous real-world results of their philosophies.
Take gun control as one recurring example. Liberals persist in their anti-Second Amendment crusade despite irrefutable data that Americas murder rate has been cut in half over the past three decades even while gun possession has reached record highs and firearms restrictions have drastically receded across America. Data proves that jurisdictions that relax gun restrictions become safer, whereas jurisdictions that tighten gun restrictions become more dangerous. According to Dr. John Lott, Jr., he has not encountered a single example either in the United States or abroad that contradicts that causal relationship. Not one.
As another example, liberals cling to anthropomorphic global warming hyperbole, even as worldwide temperatures have plateaued over the past two decades. According to their hypothesis, enormous increases in carbon output should have proportionately increased temperatures over that two-decade period.
And now, the bankrupt city of Detroit provides the latest real-world laboratory application of liberals agenda.
After all, if tasked with drawing up a policy wish list, liberals would include almost all of the practices that were implemented by Detroit over the past 50 years.
During that span, the city has exclusively elected Democrats as mayors, including the extremist and racially divisive Coleman Young for 20 years. It maintained the third-highest income tax in the nation, and just last year doubled its business tax. Liberals assert that labor unions boost prosperity and benefit workers, and Detroit has remained as hospitable to unions as any city in America. Its municipal employee force was approximately twice as large per capita as other large cities, and its leaders repeatedly agreed to lavish public employee retirement commitments.
According to liberals, those are precisely the things that should bring prosperity.
Instead of prosperity, however, those policies have pulverized Detroit into what we see today. Since 1950, when it was Americas manufacturing powerhouse after producing a huge portion of the arms that won World War II, its population has plummeted from 1.8 million to 700,000. Four out of every ten streetlights dont even function, and in the past five years alone 70% of its parks have closed. Its crime rate is five times the national average, and its police force has been slashed by 40% in just the past ten years.
In comparison, the thriving city of Houston provides a real-world laboratory for conservative principles. It maintains a regulatory light touch and low taxes, refusing to raise tax rates during the post-recession budget shortfall. Id argue we may be the most libertarian city in America, says Houston Strategies blogger Tory Gattis. Live and let live, strong property rights, not much corruption, small-business culture.
Unsurprisingly, Houston has prospered. As summarized by The Wall Street Journal in its interview of Mayor Annise Parker:
For the calendar year ending in February, it saw the fastest pace of job growth (4.5%) among the countrys 20 largest metropolitan areas. (With a population of 2.1 million, its the fourth-largest U.S. city.) In 2011, the last year such data are available, Houston had the fastest-growing large metropolitan economy, at 3.7%. Add to that a cost of living that is 7.8% below the U.S. average New York is 53.4% above the average and you can see the attraction for waves of new arrivals. Houston costs run a third less than the average in the 29 largest metro areas. Adjusting for lower costs, Houston has the highest per-capita income of any city in the nation.
Confronted with these facts, liberals might scapegoat the domestic auto industrys decline for Detroits ills and attribute Houstons prosperity to the oil industry. But that doesnt withstand scrutiny. Pittsburgh witnessed a similar decline in the steel industry, yet it and other Midwestern cities prosper relative to Detroit. Moreover, auto manufacturing itself thrives in more business-friendly Sun Belt states. Note also that Ford Motor Company refused the big-government federal bailout and as a result is today more valuable than General Motors and Chrysler combined in terms of market and estimated values. As for Houston, the energy sector has actually decreased from 90% of its economy just 20 years ago to half today. So that doesnt explain its prosperity.
If liberalism worked, then Detroit and Houston would be reversed. Instead, Detroit has unraveled over the past 50 years into a morass of dysfunction, crime, blight and bankruptcy while Houston has prospered.
The two cities serve as laboratories of policy, and the results should be clear to liberals as well as conservatives. Finally accepting that reality can mean fewer future Detroits, and more Houstons.
After all, if tasked with drawing up a policy wish list, liberals would include almost all of the practices that were implemented by Detroit over the past 50 years
Excellent article. Thanks for posting.
I've posted it many times before...Houston offers ANYONE willing to roll up their sleeves and work hard the opportunity to succeed.
Liberalism is backasswards and against nature. It rewards the non producers while punishing the producers. Thus it attracts the non producers. Eventually what happened in Detroit is the inevitable outcome.
I live in Houston and I have noticed an increase of out-of-state car license plates.
It gives me the chills because I am convinced of an increase of influx of liberals in Houston and Texas.
Wherever liberals gather, things will go to sh*t.
But, I think back to the mid '80's when folks from MI, NY, NJ, OH, etc. were coming down here in droves (in their rusty cars) and the Katrina people and how Houston doesn't change. The newcomers tend to conform to Houston, real quickly like.
Houston is not conservative. It might be just less liberal than Detroit.
What a crock. Houston isn’t conservative. It has a lezbo mayor.
As a Texan by choice, trust me, all yankees moving south are not liberal. Many are as TP as myself.
Where there is statism, there is strife. Where there is Christ, there is harmony and love.
Dallas and Houston, as well as the rest of Texas, have VERY integrated and loving church communities. I can't imagine existing any other way.
I'm most familiar with Dallas, having lived there for 20 years. Unfortunately, the inner city has been degrading (crime, education achievement, entrepreneurial progress) in direct proportion to militant black activism (e.g. John Wiley Price and Al Lipscomb). Same with Houston. I lived there for a little while in the boom years. Also, I grew up around Detroit in the 60's through the late 70's. There was a TOTAL, multidimensional collapse during that time because of militant race hustlers taking down the pillars of economic progress.
I Lived in Baton Rouge for 5 years. WHAT A DIFFERENCE! Even though the public schools were lacking, there was a much more homogenous desire to become educated and achieve. There was also a deeply rooted respect for others, especially elders and those in authority - regardless of race or social status. I developed more deeply rooted friendships across all colors and religious persuasions in a short time than any other place I've lived. The acceptance of me and my family was based on a widespread practice of Christian love and respect by most in the region.
That's why "the south", is now the last, best hope for the American Dream of liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all persuasions.