Detroit- Broke City

imagesAlas, no longer can the words from that famous Kiss song be applied. Detroit Rock City. Today, late breaking news, the city of Detroit has filed for bankruptcy!  It’s now Detroit Broke City. This is the largest civil bankruptcy in US history and as I watched the news a few minutes ago, I was dismayed with not only the way it was being reported, quite matter of factly, but also by the scale of the event. This city used to boast a population of over 2 million people, now it has about 700,000. It housed the entire automobile industry of the world, let alone the USA. It was the home to Motown, GM, Ford, Chrysler and many many more iconic brands. Now however, and particularly tonight, Detroit is dead.

It’s amazing to me that something like this can happen in a country where so much wealth is just given away needlessly. Other countries benefit at our expense in the building and often re building of their own, delapedated infrastructure. It’s not just this present government who are to blame, although the more I see and hear of how this current regime is operating, the more dismayed I have become over their inability to live up to their promises. My heart goes out to Detroit tonight, and even though the mayor has assured everyone that nothing will change and that all public services will remain in tact and operating, one can only imagine how long that promise can last? A lady, interviewed on NBC earlier, a retired police officer, stated that her main concern was the possibility that she would lose her pension. I watched in envy, as this 40 something year old lady, who I’m sure devoted 20 odd years to her job serving the Detroit community, had the audacity to suggest that she, along with thousands of others, should in fact deserve a life long pension for that service. And therein lies just part of the issue. I, at 54, haven’t the ability to save for a pension unless I work, so why should she be exempt from seeking further employment to satisfy her will to live in the style she’s accustomed to until she turns 90? There’s such a poor outlook in this country towards health care and pensions, that it beggars belief no one in government has ever put a stop to the foolish way we treat government employees from the day they retire to the day they die. Oh, wait! I forgot, they are government employees, all of them! That’s why! None of them need to work an extra day in their lives because they are taken care of by a life long pensions, that you and I are paying for, but that they as the government implemented! Now I know I am generalizing here, and I realize that not all government workers fall into the entitlement outlined above, but seriously, has anyone ever done the math? I know they have, and yet, we, as a nation are stuck in ‘stupid’, leaving no doubt to any doubters, who are the takers and who are givers.

Detroit, I have visited you on many occasions and I am sorry to say, despite the efforts of Michael Moore, a two-faced fame seeker, in his many visits to the suburb of Flint and to the headquarters of many of the car conglomerates, attempting to get answers for the ‘workers’ who now have no jobs, and to the disgusting behavior of various corrupt Mayors and local authorities who have robbed Peter to pay Paul, you have received tonight what no one believed you deserved, no one other than those who predicted quite categorically all those years ago, that this abuse of power both in and out of the workplace, would destroy your city. A doomsday scenario come true.

So what happens now? Where will the money come from to replenish the city coffers? Why are we sending billions to Iraq and Afghanistan and even India 9to name but a meager few), when Detroit is suffering? All good questions, none of which I am willing to bet, will ever get answered. And, even if we could divert funds from our useless wars, would Detroit be deserving of that replenishment and salvation? I am also concerned that this is just the beginning of a situation which can only snowball out of control as we sit and watch the rest of our major cities crumble and fall foul to the same fate as Detroit. I hear also tonight that Chicago could be next. If that’s true, how long before New York, LA and San Francisco follow suit? How long will it take for this government to realize that the distribution of our wealth is being spread unevenly across a planet that couldn’t care less about us? How long before the rest of this planet, especially the countries we have subsidized for half a century and more, begin to subsidize us?? Only time will tell, but I am sure the answer to that last question will be never. Certainly not in our lifetime.

With so much uncertainty, so much imbalance, especially here in the USA, where the have’s and have not’s are segregated not just by color or race, but by a vast differences in wealth and wealth management, how do we create an environment where corruption greed and miss management of all our assets, whether at a local or federal level, is governed by those who know how to make things work and not by those who are waiting in hope for success? We, the voter have the power, or so I believed, but after the news tonight, I no longer have faith in anything related to government here in the USA. In fact, I don’t know if I ever did.  I have become the cynic I always knew I didn’t want to be, but can you blame me??

Detroit has the Red Wings, The Pistons and the Tigers. Detroit also has the Lions, and with football season just around the corner and Ford stadium charging $10 for a beer, a price vastly inflated by the addition of local government tax and also the huge profits franchise owners feel compelled to make, I give it three weeks, 2 wins and a loss, and everyone will have forgotten how serious tonight’s news was, with their entire focus trained on that next touchdown pass by QB Mathew Stafford, and without a care in the world what their government is doing with the $3 they take from every beer sold. Our priorities are all fucked up, and nothing on earth will seemingly change the way our careless attitudes have ruined a once great city.

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