Thursday, August 30, 2012

Detroit: it’s like Hiroshima without the radiation…

It kinda pains me to write this. One of the best friends I’ve ever had, a guy I’ve known for over 20 years, a guy I introduced to his wife of over 17 years, a guy I was a soldier with, a fellow conservative blogger, a fellow hockey fan, a family man and a pillar of his community, is originally from the Detroit area. He still loves the place, still supports the Detroit Lions, the Detroit Tigers, and his beloved Detroit Red Wings. After he retires from his current profession, he’s expressed a desire to return to the Detroit area.

But the more I see of Detroit, the more I question his sanity.

Motor City used to actually be the Motor City. The automakers were synonymous with Detroit and Michigan as a whole. And the unions and the Democrats annihilated the auto industry, bankrupting it for personal gain, and left the US taxpayers holding the bag for over $40 Billion with a capital B just for General Motors. They tout the Chevy Volt as some sort of miracle yet they pay you thousands in tax refunds to buy a car that gets only 40 miles on a charge, and the average owner makes about $170,000 a year. How ironic, marketing your flagship eco-crap to evil “rich people”. Then the Dems and Feds propped up what was left of Chrysler after the Germans at Daimler pulled out, not so that an American firm could buy it but so that Italy’s Fiat could buy it. At least Ford stayed afloat by refusing to let the Feral Gubmint take control. Of course, that makes them an evil corporation by doing it themselves and making a profit. But I digress…

As the popular picture on the Interwebz states, Detroit hasn’t had a Republican mayor since 1961. That’s 8 years before I was born. So for the past 51 years the city has been controlled by the Left. Now, they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over & over again expecting a different result….so, perhaps the good people of Detroit should do some soul-searching.

Detroit was once a city of 2 million citizens. It now has maybe 800,000. That’s 1.2 million people who have fled Motown. Entire neighborhoods are empty wastelands, quite literally. Thousands of buildings and homes are empty and crumbling, as evidenced by this past weekend’s article & photo essay I found on the UK Daily Mail’s website. In fact, there are a plethora of articles & sites devoted to showcasing Detroit’s blight. And this one was particularly strange, at

Look at all the pretty sights to see in friendly Detroit...
Packs of wild dogs roam free, and wild scrub & tree saplings are reclaiming areas like something out of “Life After People” on History Channel.

A report published earlier in August by the Associated Press told of two bodies decomposing in an empty Detroit lot littered with tires and furniture. The teenage boys had been stripped to their underwear, shot, and then left to rot on one of the city’s many abandoned, formerly residential blocks.

They were only the latest in a string of murder victims whose remains lay for days before being discovered.
Earlier this year Detroit’s police chief, Ralph Godbee Jr., revealed that major crimes in the city had increased in the first quarter of 2012. He said serious crimes from the end of December 2011 through late April 2012, including assaults, burglaries, rapes and larcenies, were up approximately 2 percent. There were 98 homicides in the city in that time frame, actually slightly fewer than the 102 in the same period the previous year. Most were shootings, and according to the Detroit Free Press, the Detroit PD pointed to the number of guns on the street as a main factor in the homicide rate.

The crime problem is no great surprise. Most of the nation’s worst crime problems are in Democrat-controlled cities. A recent report of the top ten violent cities in America shows that:

Violence Rank – City/State – Mayor – Political Party
1. Flint, Michigan – Dayne Walling – Democrat
2. Detroit, Michigan – Dave Bing – Democrat
3. Saint Louis, Missouri – Francis G. Slay – Democrat
4. Oakland, California – Jean Quan – Democrat
5. Memphis, Tennessee – A C Wharton, Jr. – Democrat
6. Little Rock, Arkansas – Mark Stodola – Democrat
7. Birmingham, Alabama – William A. Bell-- Democrat
8. Atlanta, Georgia- Kasim Reed-- Democrat
9. Baltimore, Maryland – Stephanie Rawlings-Blake – Democrat
10. Stockton, California – Ann Johnston – Democrat

Again, I say, insanity is doing the same thing over & over & expecting a different result.

Anyways, back to Detroit.It’s easy to get sidetracked. While some folks would like to tell you Detroit is bouncing back and is in a sort of revival, with planned parks and what not to replace the blighted areas, I’m highly skeptical. They said Baltimore was in a revival once too, and all they did was polish the turd and call it a diamond…..they spruced up one touristy area called the Inner  Harbor, back in the 80s, and then that led to Harborplace and some touristy spots and the new sports stadiums, but when I last visited in late 2000 it was still a sty just a few blocks from the tourist zone. The Fox News report from a month ago that Detroit is in a revival comes across as a paid advertisement from the Chamber of Commerce, and even the article from’s Detroit page that referred me to the article was skeptical of Detroit going from Wasteland to Wonderland…they agreed that once you leave the touristy areait gets rather dodgy.

The Baltimore the Chamber of Commerce wants you to see....
and the Baltimore they don't want you to see...

Thanks to Cop In The Hood ( for the above pics

I know every urban area has its blights. Even quaint, pristine, charming Belle of the South, friendly Charleston, SC, near where I live, has areas of grim decay just outside the tourist blocks. But Detroit has declined to near-Beirut status even worse than the city I previously thought was one of the worst derelict cities in the nation, Filthadelphia, or even Camden, New Jersey. Camden is almost beyond salvation at this point, running neck & neck with Detroit as America's Wasteland. Maybe it can be the radiation-free Nagasaki to Detroit's Hiroshima. They also just dissolved their police department...

The city itself, at 138 square miles, is larger than Manhattan, Boston, and San Francisco combined and about 2/3 of the population has fled either to the suburbs or simply out of state. Sure, populations have often shifted out of cities and into the burbs as places get crowded but those people are generally replaced and it’s not that noticeable. But for 2/3 to leave and not be replaced and to have entire swaths go fallow and disintegrate is simply un-American, or at least unfathomable to the American mind. This isn’t Hashima Island, the abandoned coal mining site in Japan. This isn’t Pripyat, Ukraine, the city next to Chernobyl that was evacuated & abandoned. This isn’t even Centralia, Pennsylvania, a village of 1,000 closed down and evacuated after a mine fire became uncontrollable and has been smoldering underground since 1962. This is Big City America. It boggles the mind.

Hashima Island, Japan

Pripiyat, Ukraine. Like Detroit, but with radiation.

Centralia...still burning...

Driven out by crime, corruption, and a crushed economy, what used to be the city that moved America has itself moved on and left its shattered remnants behind, like the husk of a cicada after it molts. Meanwhile, what’s left of Michigan is turning into an Islamic Caliphate, but that’s a blog for another day…

That delightful area of Detroit the Chamber of Commerce touts. Just don't venture past it...

NOTE: Like I mentioned above, my buddy from the Detroit area is also a fellow blogger. Swing by & read something he wrote about the exodus from Motown back in 2010 here.


Brooke said...

The 'good people' of Detroit keep electing Dems because they like their free bennies! They are swollen ticks!

The problem is, the host has died and they're still trying to drain it.

Maybe Detroit should come up with a new slogan. Something like: The city to dump your victims.

Or maybe they could bring in tourism. I hear Urban Ex is pretty exciting... As long as you're well armed!

Dave said...

I've never been to Detroit, but I used to live in Hiroshima, and it is now a beautiful city that's perfectly safe to live in! (well, don't drive and you'll be safe...)
Their Okonomiyake is the best in the world, and the people are a little more brusque than your average Japanese population.

Sorry, pretty much off-topic, but I like to contradict the assumption that Hiroshima remains a glowing crater to this day when it comes up. I trust you that Detroit is a stinking hole of rust and ruin.

Steve: The Lightning Man said...

Heavens no, Dave...I didn't mean to imply it still looked like it did in August of 45....I was meaning to compare that stark vision that we always see, which is the devastation right after the nuking, and the way Detroit looks now.

Thanks for reading!

Betty Windsor said...

Interesting post and comments. The thing about the Democrats... well, surely the poor will vote Democrat, they would be stupid to do otherwise. Similarly the rich vote Republican, they would be stupid to do otherwise. My point being that in times of poverty, people vote for the socialist parties and it isn't necessarily the socialists fault that the economy is tanking. We live in a capitalist world after all...

What could the Democrats have done (lots, I'm sure, though realistically?) and would the Republicans have done better?

An interesting point would be to see at what stage of Detroit's decline people started voting in the Democrats and what the balance of votes between the two has been throughout.

I'd also be interested to know what policies the Republicans would have done to prevent the decline. It could be argued that they would have made it worse if they are anything like the Conservative party over here in the UK where they slash taxes, services... everything.

It's a shame politics is about divide and not about togetherness.