1207 Why Detroit is Bankrupt
Have you heard enough about Detroit and lately? Good. Because here’s more.
The destruction of this once-great industrial capital is not the fault of greedy public employees with fat benefits and fat pensions. It is not the fault of corrupt public officials, though they certainly haven’t helped. It is not the fault of Japanese or European auto imports.
It’s the fault of outsourcing. And it won’t be long before outsourcing spreads its ugly disease elsewhere.
America built itself into a world power with factories, farms and mines. And now, we’re too good for all that pedestrian stuff. A smoke stack? OMG, heaven forbid!
While Detroit still builds cars, who wants them? And why would you? They don’t match the quality and longevity of the overseas brands made here or there.
Greedy unions again? No. GM collapsed under its own weight and because the marketing people weren’t focus group happy enough. (Hard to believe ANYONE is insufficiently focus group happy, but it happens.) Ford may get it right occasionally. Chrysler has been passed around like a joint at a frat party and as the various owners puffed on it, what came off the line was, well, cars built by a corporation on weed.
Cars have a jillion parts. Where do they come from?
Where was your TV made? The walls of your house? Your TV set? The contents of your bottle of apple juice? Your Apple phone or Android or Jitterbug?
How about the fuel you use for that car and for your furnace?
Detroit has been infected by outsource disease. As have Akron, New York, Chicago, Pittsburgh and the forests of the Northwest.
Oh, you may say, but we’re the tech capital of the known universe. Not like we once were. Check out what’s going on in Israel and India and Indonesia. Indonesia, fer cryin’ out loud!
The professor-in-chief, Obama can’t get anything done except rehearsed lectures. Fortunately, he has a ready-made excuse... congress.
What’ amazing is congress has not used one of its most important powers, the ability to declare war. It’s waging an undeclared war on itself and us, while factories sit idle and farms sit idle and coal mines are turned into The Pollution Monster.
Until we fix the factory-farm-mine industrial complex, we’re going to see more Detroits.
If you’re an optimist, what’s happening in Detroit is good news. Property is dirt cheap. That’s a buying opportunity. If the city survives, those values are going to rise sharply eventually.
If the city doesn’t survive, it doesn’t matter where you put your money. It’s not going to be worth the fancy financial instruments it’s printed on.
--Israel is starting a new TV channel to tell its side of things. Kind of a Jewish Al Jazeera in Hebrew. No known plans to bring it to America.
--There are so many dog pics on Facebook these days they could call it Facebark. Next in the string of supererogatory pictures is the restaurant meal. Call it Foodbook.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2013