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The wrong way to save Detroit. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder declared a financial emergency for the City of… (Jeff Kowalsky / EPA ) Michigan's Republican governor, Rick Snyder, took the unprecedented step last week of announcing that he considers Detroit's elected leaders incapable of fixing the city's fiscal problems, and so he will appoint an emergency financial manager with sweeping authority. That's a flawed approach. The problem in Detroit is not the people in charge (though some Detroit leaders have certainly failed the city). The real problem is the broader structure of government in the region. Detroit, once the nation's fourth largest city, has been crumbling since the 1950s, when its population peaked at a little over 1.84 million people. The emptying of Detroit stems from a complex mix of intractable racism, corporate and governmental decisions, failed institutions and crime levels that have driven most of the middle class to the suburbs.

It's time for new ideas. Detroit is not dead. Detroit’s Bankruptcy Marks the Tip of the Iceberg | The Heritage Foundation. Detroit’s recent filing for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection would protect the city from its creditors while allowing it to restructure its debts. The proceedings that follow will, in many respects, set precedents for the swell of municipal bankruptcies that are likely to follow. Some of these precedents will be set through the courts, but federal policymakers have the power to set the most important precedent of all: that bailouts are not an option. Contrary to popular belief, recent and looming municipal bankruptcy filings were not caused by the recent “great recession.” Rather, they represent the inevitable demise of big-government, liberal policies promoted by self-interested politicians and the coercive public employee unions that support them.

A federal bailout of Detroit would reward the very actions that led to the city’s demise and simply enable future fiscal mismanagement. Detroit’s Decline Detroit serves as a poster child for economic decline. Bailouts Are Not the Answer. The Post-Post-Apocalyptic Detroit. Photo In downtown Detroit, at the headquarters of the online-mortgage company Quicken Loans, there stands another downtown Detroit in miniature. The diorama, made of laser-cut acrylic and stretching out over 19 feet in length, is a riot of color and light: Every structure belonging to Quicken’s billionaire owner, Dan Gilbert, is topped in orange and illuminated from within, and Gilbert currently owns 60 of them, a lordly nine million square feet of real estate in all. He began picking up skyscrapers just three and a half years ago, one after another, paying as little as $8 a square foot.

He bought five buildings surrounding Capitol Park, the seat of government when Michigan became a state in 1837. He snapped up the site of the old Hudson’s department store, where 12,000 employees catered to 100,000 customers daily in the 1950s. Many of Gilbert’s purchases are 20th-century architectural treasures, built when Detroit served as a hub of world industry. Continue reading the main story. Who's to blame for Detroit's collapse? - latimes. A for-lease sign on a building in downtown Detroit. The city filed for Chapter… (Bill Pugliano / Getty Images ) Detroit filed for bankruptcy Thursday, making it the largest U.S. city to ever seek Chapter 9 protection.

It’s sad news for the once-great city. Still, the headline seemed to have delighted many. Just check out The Times' comments section, with several readers gleefully blaming Democrats. “Detroit should be held up as a national example how liberal-socialist, Democrat policies can destroy a once vibrant city within a generation,” says “I hate the media.” (Nice moniker.) In a 2011 Op-Ed about Detroit’s collapse, Scott Martelle, author of “Detroit: A Biography,” gave readers a view of the Michigan city through a different lens. Racism plays a significant role too. Earlier this year, Martelle wrote about Detroit’s demise for our Op-Ed pages again, explaining: So, what’s next for Detroit?

Now is hardly the time for conservatives to indulge in schadenfreude. Anatomy of Detroit’s Decline - Interactive Feature. Mayor Coleman A. Young of Detroit at an event in 1980. Richard Sheinwald/Associated Press The financial crisis facing Detroit was decades in the making, caused in part by a trail of missteps, suspected corruption and inaction. Here is a sampling of some city leaders who trimmed too little, too late and, rather than tackling problems head on, hoped that deep-rooted structural problems would turn out to be cyclical downturns. Charles E.

Bowles, backed by the Ku Klux Klan, was in office for seven months in 1930 before people demanded his removal. His ascension to the mayor's office was followed by a spike in crime, and he was suspected to be linked to some of Detroit's underworld figures, according to “Detroit: A Biography" by Scott Martelle. Edward Jeffries, who served as mayor from 1940 to 1948, developed the Detroit Plan, which involved razing 100 blighted acres and preparing the land for redevelopment. Coleman A. Kwame M. Related.