How much more can Detroit take?

From the diaries by Erick.

And that headline, dear friends, comes directly from yesterdays New York Times.

DETROIT — Motown left years ago. The city’s former mayor is behind bars. Unemployment hovers around 14 percent. An emergency loan measure for its automakers died in Washington late Thursday after failing to generate enough support from Republican senators. Oh, and its professional football team is 0-13 for the season.

How much more, one wonders, can Detroit take?

It’s an interesting article, mostly because it goes nowhere and says nothing. But hey, it is the New York Times. And the real question should be “How much more can the country take?”

And the author left out a couple of things too. Like the fact that the people of Michigan have elected Jennifer Granholm TWICE and she’s got the economic sense of, oh I don’t know, maybe John McCain or George Bush with a welfare state mentality tosses in for good measure.

I have issues with the whole tenor of this story from the Times. I have a couple of questions that the author didn’t ask. First, when was the last time Detroit had a mayor who wasn’t a member of the minority-victim-entitlement community? In other words, a Democrat. And then there’s their congressional delegation. Same question.

Did it ever occur to any of the folks who live in Detroit that maybe their problems might stem from the fact that their city, and for the most part their state, is structured around supporting completely non-productive activities like sucking cash out of the productive parts of the economy and giving it to the louts? Did it ever occur to them that we live in a world where companies can manufacture a great car with a labor cost that’s almost half of what the vaunted UAW has been able to suck out of the Big 3 and that, combined with work rules that I don’t expect the folks in this article to understand, have created the situation they find themselves in today? Ahhh, no, it didn’t.

Let me be really clear here. Cities should be the economic engine that drives states, regions and countries. The politicians and the community leaders have turned virtually every city in the country, certainly the “old” cities like Detroit into third world poverty centers. The political structures seem to be permanently inbred and about as efficient as any central African country. As far as I’m concerned, their actions – those of the political leaders of both parties – are criminal. The Democrats foster the system because it’s their plantation/tenant farmer system. The Republicans just ignore it because they don’t want to get their hands dirty fixing real problems and they just don’t have the backbone/stomach for a fight.

Solution? A couple of ideas. First, cut off the cash cow from Congress. The refusal to bail out the UAW and the entitled class at the Big 3 is a great place to start. Will it cause pain and dislocation? You bet, too bad. Cancer treatment isn’t a vacation in the South of France, get over it. Second, Republicans at the local/state level need to put together a long term strategy to take the cities. Can it be done? I think it can, but not by the bunch of brain-dead wimps that have been running the Party for the last 40 years. We need to find people like Rudy who will fight for the city and it’s people based on free market (or at least freer market) principles that don’t center on the government being the center of life.

The Party needs to recruit. And recruit. And recruit. And recruit people who know how to get their hands dirty and fight to win. Who understand that we are in a war for the soul of the nation and the Democrats are the enemy. We should have public interest groups of Republican lawyers who wake up every morning with the sure hope of finding corruption in the Democratic machine in their city and committed to publicizing it and getting the offenders prosecuted. Every Democrat official in every city should go to bed at night with the sure knowledge that they are being investigated, will be exposed and will get the opportunity to hone their organization skills working with the AB and Bloods.

The Party needs to have program alternatives directed at the inner cities. It’s called vision. And marketing. The stuff we push now is mostly high level policies aimed at the business community. We need to abandon the business community – they’ve figured out that the Dems will throw money at them. We need to be selling the people on the street a vision for a better home, better education for their kids, better opportunities and all through local programs that rely on self reliance and individual responsibility instead of being a successful victim and sucking the government teat.

Where to start? Well, I for one would start with the NRC election coming up. We should toss Mike Duncan out into the snow. The guy is a gutless, irresponsible idiot. He’s had the job for years, he’s done nothing but raise money and his failures are the fault of GWB and John McCain. Except neither Bush or McCain were responsible for recruiting, he was. Toss him in a snow bank – let him stay and raise money if he wants the job, but give him no say on policy or anything else. Let’s get somebody who understands that the Party hasn’t had a vision or a communicator since Ronald Reagan left office and the void needs to be filled. Somebody who understands that we need to grow the party from the ground up. Somebody who understands – and can communicate – Conservative, small government ideas to common folk.

Do that, Detroit can be a vibrant city. So can Toledo. So can any of the other Democrat strongholds. But we need to go to war.