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comment by thenewgreen
thenewgreen  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Don’t buy the right-wing myth about Detroit

If you actually want to see the city of Detroit once again vibrant, then there needs to be tax incentives for small businesses, and large corporations alike. There needs to be incentives for people to move their organizations there. Once large corporations are there, there will be money there. Once there is money, there will be spending at local restaurants etc. Tax incentives for large businesses aren't the problem, they are part of the solution.





cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Some things just can't be saved.

I was a bit surprised that New Orleans came back.

-XC

thenewgreen  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The thing is, until you've been down there it's hard to convince people that there is something special happening there. Midtown detroit is a fantastic cultural scene, with a lot of awesome businesses emerging all the time. It's growing, due to small entrepreneurship and large money interests like Dan Gilbert et al. Will Detroit once again be a 2mm person city? No, not likely. Will it remain a 700k person city? Possibly, but maybe not. Perhaps the city limit shrinks and the suburbs end up absorbing the exterior.

But it's not beyond saving and it's worth saving. There are a lot of people that have bet on the future of Detroit, and I'm talking some BIG money. That, to me is the most encouraging evidence of it's viability.

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Sure, it's Carrboro.

But surrounded by ruins.

-XC

PS - Warren Buffet is buying small town newspapers. And has repeatedly owned airlines. Big money makes mistakes.

thenewgreen  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

No, it's Durham's tobacco district/campus with bigger money interests, a surrounding infrastructure ripe for manufacturing and major waterways for transport. Get rid of the crack heads and it's a pretty good bet post bankruptcy.

....now how to get rid of those crack heads...? That there is the real question.

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Uh, well, except for three R1 universities and a favorable tax/regulatory environment.

Detroit is suffering from a reverse network effect. I have no idea how one reverses that, but I suspect that, absent drastic and brilliant effort, it can't be reversed. See also Polaroid, Kodak, etc, etc.

-XC

thenewgreen  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

As for the Universities, Detroit has Wayne State, Oakland University and UofM Dearborn. Plus they have Henry Ford hospital, Beaumont Hospital, the Detroit Medical Center etc. It's a hell of hub for medicine. Lot's of positives. Detroit needs people to reverse that reverse network effect (I just swallowed my tongue), and in order to do that needs an influx of capital investment by big corporations. How to get those corporations? Tax incentives and land for $1.

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Again, network effect. Those are fine schools, but have fractional throw weight compared to our local.

One reason Boston has it over RTP is their university density. Ditto for Silicon Valley over Boston and NYC. (NYC is seriously short on universities)

You'd have to talk to the boss over how to get people in, that's her field not mine. But I can't see any big company bothering to move up there - it's just the reverse direction that everything is moving in.

There's literally not a job that could pay me enough to move up there.

-XC

pseydtonne  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

How is NYC seriously short on universities?

Oh wait, you're being sarcastic.

b_b  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The best possible result would be that this bankruptcy serves to get the city government out of the way. I don't know how to fix it either, but that seems like it would be a good start.

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Remember, the same people who elected those guys will elect their replacements when the receivership is over.

-XC

b_b  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

The corruption here runs very deep, indeed. Here's a fun story. True. But not at all uncommon. There's a tiny restaurant in an OK neighborhood not far from where I live. The restaurateur tried his ass off to get a liquor license, because what's a French lunch restaurant without wine service? He paid thousands of dollars only to be told to fuck off, because he wasn't greasing the right wheels. So he let his patrons BYOB. Of course this man thought the with hour response times that the police couldn't possibly have time to regulate whether his patrons were bringing bottles of wine to his humble little establishment. They did. Regular patrols stopped by and harassed this business owner and his customers. Being a good citizen, he told everyone they couldn't bring booze anymore, because of the police, but he continued to serve water in old wine bottles. Then the police harassed him about that, too!

This incident is illustrative but by no means unique or remarkable. Basically, my point (and I'm sure you are just a bit sympathetic to it) is fuck these bastards. They could all have their pensions slashed to 0 and I could really give a fuck. They are interested in themselves and don't care about public safety. If the police want me to care about them, then they have to care about me, too.

So, in the end, you are right; the same people will be running the city, both elected and non-elected. The question is whether this can be a reset. I don't know that it can, but I don't know that it can't, either. As we talked about the other day, new leadership might have a chance of winning, at least in the mayor's office (not that Bing is a bad mayor, he just isn't up to the task at his age and with his health). That combined with the very high profile corruption cases that have been prosecuted lately may give leaders pause. Maybe.

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Oh, and I don't mean to be "Mr. Negative" but I always swore that no way no how would I ever be or raise someone to be those people you see living in a town with 85% unemployment because "this is where we live."

You know?

-XC

b_b  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I chose to live where I live. I could bitch to no end, but who couldn't? Overall, I love it here, despite the problems. At times like these it's easy to focus on the negative.

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Well, in August I question living in the moderately deep south, but in November it's totally worth it.

And fewer roving gangs of visigoths taking advantage of no cops and dark streets. :-)

-XC

cliffelam  ·  2538 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Restricted liquor licenses are examples of rent seeking and regulatory creep. I am not a fan of either.

I don't really need someone to tell me if my barber has a degree, you know?

-XC