The “Consider This!” Podcast, Episode 49: What the Detroit Bankruptcy Has To Say To Us

    The latest episode of the “Consider This!” podcast is out. Conservative commentary in 10 minutes or less. Just one topic this time around. I tackle the Detroit bankruptcy and what is has to say about political policies in other cities, in the US, and, actually, any country around the world. Detroit, Michigan, formerly the auto-making capital of the US, if not the world, filed for chapter 9 | Read More »

    Detroit, Europe and Krugman-defined optional austerity

    Decreases in annual increases of big government budgets do not “austerity” measures make and are not the reason that the, rightly-named-by-Nobel-Prize-winning-economist Paul Krugman, economic Depression continues in most of Europe and the United States. President Richard Nixon actually didn’t say that “We are all Keynesians now” after taking the United States off the gold standard in 1971 and otherwise ensuring that Hubert Humphrey-Democrats got the | Read More »

    What Other Cities Can Learn from Detroit’s Bankruptcy

    On today’s edition of Coffee and Markets, Brad Jackson and Ben Domenech are joined by Cate Long to discuss Detroit’s bankruptcy, the state constitutional challenges it faces and what other cities can learn from Detroit.

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    Spending tomorrow’s money is easy

    The short explanation for the demise of Detroit is that time caught up with it.  Decades of corruption built a mountain of liabilities, while scaring off the taxpayers needed to finance those promises.  It’s like a movie trailer for the blockbuster disaster film to come, when America’s declining demographics catch up with the federal government’s vastly higher mountain of unfunded commitments.  Detroit is the city | Read More »

    Causation, Correlation and Detroit

    Let us stipulate that the collapse of Detroit, MI and its recent Chapter Nine bankruptcy filing represents an all-American train wreck of inexcusable dimension. Detroit went from being considered by some the Athens of The West to having a credit rating and crime problem more reminiscent of the Mogadishu of The Midlands. So many people are blamed for the current state of Detroit. But most of what you read is patently illogical.

    Those who have no desire to deal with the truth tend to deliberately invert the mechanisms by which Detroit, MI was reduced to an ash heap reminiscent of Hiroshima without the expenditure of thermonuclear ordnance. The general technique of obscuring what went wrong in Detroit is to deliberately conflate causation with correlation. I’ve read a lot of biased writing over the last few days about Detroit. In every case, the thesis of the article, editorial, or blog post involves describing a result of Detroit’s stupidity as the fountainhead of the stupid itself.

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    The Wealthy’s Fast-Pass Lifestyle

    On today’s edition of Coffee and Markets, Brad Jackson and Ben Domenech are joined by Francis Cianfrocca to discuss more on Detroit’s bankruptcy, one-percent playtime consultants and the reality gap between the wealthy and the rest of America.

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    Stupid Liberal Quote of the Day- July 23rd Edition

    As everyone is aware, the city of Detroit declared bankruptcy. There is no shortage of reasons being proffered about ranging from the obvious decline of the auto industry, sweetheart public union worker deals, poor city planning dating back decades, and mismanagement at best and corruption at worst regarding city leadership. But, lurking behind it all according to the Left is those mean old Republicans and | Read More »

    Detroit Goes Bust

    On today’s edition of Coffee and Markets, Brad Jackson and Ben Domenech are joined by Francis Cianfrocca to discuss Detroit’s bankruptcy filing, if the unions will take a harder hit than the bond owners and what kind of national precedence this bankruptcy may set.

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    Detroit: A Progressive Utopia

    I grew up in Detroit. I went to high school in what can be considered an ‘inner ring’ suburb, went to college at the University of Michigan nearby, and did my graduate work at Wayne State University downtown. After medical school, I came back and did residency outside of Detroit, and even finished my residency up in Flint, MI.  My parents still live in the | Read More »

    Detroit files for bankruptcy (with apologies to William Butler Yeats).

    Detroit files for bankruptcy (with apologies to William Butler Yeats).

    So.  Detroit has filed for bankruptcy. Ahem. Deeper and deeper in its gathered regret The city cannot bear its crushing debt; Things fall apart; Blue Models cannot stand; Smith’s virtuous Fist is loosed upon the land, The bankruptcy is loosed, and everywhere The solvency of proud Detroit is drowned; The Left lacked all competence, while the Right Was kept away, per standard policy. Surely some | Read More »

    Charles Murray Had A Point: America Coming Apart

    Ah, The Bubblelands. Those who live in places that Charles Murray described as Superzips in his analytical masterpiece Coming Apart. We have such a wonderful cognitive elite in America. How they enjoy their sojourns to Davos or a jolly old talk at one this year’s TED Conferences. Life is easy in these blessed enclaves. It’s harder when you cross the tracks and step into a world far different from what our current leadership views as America.

    Outside the high walls and far from the gilded mansions another America lies stricken with cancer. Their culture dissolves, their cities are so violent that their own elected representatives call in The National Guard. The ambulances no longer make it in time to save you from “The Big One.” In Detroit, as municipal bankruptcy ensues, people laugh at the idea of being saved by an ambulance.

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    After The Gold Rush III: The Decline and Fall of The Motown Empire

    Massive complexity cannot permanently attain equilibrium. Human beings lack the intellect and the moral character to manage it. Complexity is adopted because of the awesome societal benefits it offers both individuals and organizations. Mass production, mass communications, modern transport and modern medicine have so changed and enhanced the lives of the average American, that most of us would be dead without them. Yet, as complexity increases, its marginal unit costs increase and the marginal unit benefits decline. This interaction eventually leads to the marginal effect of further complexity becoming a negative instead of a positive. Nowhere has this become more painfully untenable than Detroit, MI. The city has become, in my humble opinion, the canary in the coal mine for urban America.

    Detroit initially gained from complexity. General Motors came to symbolize the American commonweal. It was a social safety-valve where people who wanted to escape major injustices of American Society could come and try their hand at work that was dirty and hard – yet very lucrative compared to the alternatives. Detroit rode this growing complexity and incoming diaspora until it became the 5th largest American City and was nicknamed “The Arsenal of Democracy.” Then Motown rode the complexity curve over the hump.

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    Reforming The Republic V: Fixing The American City

    I would argue Baltimore is not a statistical outlier, but rather a predictable precursor – a canary in the coalmine if you will that indicates what American cities will increasingly degenerate towards going forward if our nation does not significantly reform how we handle them. Cities in Post-Modern Amerika suffer from an interlocking directory of failure modes which retard their economic and social development. This scares many productive and worthwhile people out of setting foot on one of their streets unless necessity brooks no other course of action. A typical American City will usually be worse than the surrounding countryside in crime, illegitimacy, educational outcomes, and economic opportunity. This is precisely opposite of how it was originally intended to work.

    So just what does America do about murder as lifestyle in Baltimorgue, bankruptcy in Detroit, or the perception at least of deliberate Apartheid in new Haven, CT? Here’s what I think should be a reasonable to-do list.

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    Deutschland Meets Detroit: UAW partners with German union to launch all-out invasion of Mercedes & VW plants in U.S.

    Detroit City Limits

    Not withstanding the UAW’s contribution to the decline of Detroit’s Big Three, it’s been more than two years since the UAW’s Bob King announced his union’s intent to “shame” foreign auto makers into unionizing their American workers through “blackmail.”

    Moreover, it’s been nearly two years since the UAW’s King began talks with the German union IG Metal and VW’s works council.

    With some set backs, to date, progress at unionizing foreign automakers’ U.S. operations has been slow going for Detroit’s most progressive union boss–to say the least.

    Now, even as the UAW fights with its own employees, things have begun to heat up in the South.

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    Detroit and the Failed Liberal Experiment

    The city of Detroit appears to be on the verge of being taken over financially by the state of Michigan. As expected, liberals and labor unions are crying the usual fouls and predicting the usual calamities that will befall what was once the nation’s fourth largest city. One article I recently read insinuated that there was a racial motive behind the move. Specifically, should Detroit | Read More »