US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

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US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Dozens of US cities may have entire neighbourhoods bulldozed as part of drastic "shrink to survive" proposals being considered by the Obama administration to tackle economic decline.

The government looking at expanding a pioneering scheme in Flint, one of the poorest US cities, which involves razing entire districts and returning the land to nature.

Local politicians believe the city must contract by as much as 40 per cent, concentrating the dwindling population and local services into a more viable area.

The radical experiment is the brainchild of Dan Kildee, treasurer of Genesee County, which includes Flint.

Having outlined his strategy to Barack Obama during the election campaign, Mr Kildee has now been approached by the US government and a group of charities who want him to apply what he has learnt to the rest of the country.

Mr Kildee said he will concentrate on 50 cities, identified in a recent study by the Brookings Institution, an influential Washington think-tank, as potentially needing to shrink substantially to cope with their declining fortunes.

Most are former industrial cities in the "rust belt" of America's Mid-West and North East. They include Detroit, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Memphis.

In Detroit, shattered by the woes of the US car industry, there are already plans to split it into a collection of small urban centres separated from each other by countryside.

"The real question is not whether these cities shrink – we're all shrinking – but whether we let it happen in a destructive or sustainable way," said Mr Kildee. "Decline is a fact of life in Flint. Resisting it is like resisting gravity."

Karina Pallagst, director of the Shrinking Cities in a Global Perspective programme at the University of California, Berkeley, said there was "both a cultural and political taboo" about admitting decline in America.

"Places like Flint have hit rock bottom. They're at the point where it's better to start knocking a lot of buildings down," she said.

Flint, sixty miles north of Detroit, was the original home of General Motors. The car giant once employed 79,000 local people but that figure has shrunk to around 8,000.

Unemployment is now approaching 20 per cent and the total population has almost halved to 110,000.

The exodus – particularly of young people – coupled with the consequent collapse in property prices, has left street after street in sections of the city almost entirely abandoned.

In the city centre, the once grand Durant Hotel – named after William Durant, GM's founder – is a symbol of the city's decline, said Mr Kildee. The large building has been empty since 1973, roughly when Flint's decline began.

Regarded as a model city in the motor industry's boom years, Flint may once again be emulated, though for very different reasons.

But Mr Kildee, who has lived there nearly all his life, said he had first to overcome a deeply ingrained American cultural mindset that "big is good" and that cities should sprawl – Flint covers 34 square miles.

He said: "The obsession with growth is sadly a very American thing. Across the US, there's an assumption that all development is good, that if communities are growing they are successful. If they're shrinking, they're failing."

But some Flint dustcarts are collecting just one rubbish bag a week, roads are decaying, police are very understaffed and there were simply too few people to pay for services, he said.

If the city didn't downsize it will eventually go bankrupt, he added.

Flint's recovery efforts have been helped by a new state law passed a few years ago which allowed local governments to buy up empty properties very cheaply.

They could then knock them down or sell them on to owners who will occupy them. The city wants to specialise in health and education services, both areas which cannot easily be relocated abroad.

The local authority has restored the city's attractive but formerly deserted centre but has pulled down 1,100 abandoned homes in outlying areas.

Mr Kildee estimated another 3,000 needed to be demolished, although the city boundaries will remain the same.

Already, some streets peter out into woods or meadows, no trace remaining of the homes that once stood there.

Choosing which areas to knock down will be delicate but many of them were already obvious, he said.

The city is buying up houses in more affluent areas to offer people in neighbourhoods it wants to demolish. Nobody will be forced to move, said Mr Kildee.

"Much of the land will be given back to nature. People will enjoy living near a forest or meadow," he said.

Mr Kildee acknowledged that some fellow Americans considered his solution "defeatist" but he insisted it was "no more defeatist than pruning an overgrown tree so it can bear fruit again".

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

VillageTown: a town of many villages.

The village is the most supportive form of habitat, a small community of about 500. But for a local economy to thrive, one needs a community of 5000 to 10,000 people. So build a VillageTown, with 10-20 village-clusters, where everything is within a ten minute walk & everyone works within. This simple idea solves a host of today's problems and provides a higher quality of life for all ages & stages of life.

 

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We segregate life. In every stage of life, from birth to daycare, to school, to university, to bedroom suburbs, to work in industrial parks & offices, to shop in malls, to grow old in retirement homes & die in nursing homes, we separate people. We reinvented life to sell cars. Cars segregate life to create the oiled economy. To drive our oiled economy, we sacrificed quality of life. This was a mistake.

Put romance back in life, create enchantment. Create a vibrant, dynamic place with many different things happening - all the time, all day, every day. Build a durable, diverse economy. Make it affordable. Provide for all ages & stages of life, birth to death. Build multiple clustered villages, each with its own character derived from the people who live there... so walking from one to another takes you from one culture to another. Enrich life.

 

It takes a village. It takes a town
In England, 25% want to live in villages.
In America, an African saying was popular:
"
It takes a village to raise the child"
But... to run a business you need a town.
And for life to be enriched & interesting, you need more than a small village... read more

 

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Watch the videos , read, buy the book. Learn about the ideas; if you like them, become involved now. Build your Village.

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

We need to start getting rid of the dams on some of our rivers as well.
Othewise, there won't be marine life left to sustain the ecosystem once our ability to keep them artificially propagated diminishes.

Scary times...

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Excellent article Sam, thanks. :)

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Bail out banks bulldozing brand-new homes... it's not just the old, run down cities that are slated for demolition.

 

http://inflation.us/videos.html

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

May I volunteer Seattle for Bulldozing?

Built on land fill, in a 3 Tectonic plate convergence zone, very few redeeming features, preferably with the inhabitants unaware of the impending demolition.

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Homes Bulldozed While Others Sleep in a Tent
lacourre wrote:

 

What a sick society we live in, when we simultaneously have rapidly increasing numbers of homeless families and brand new homes being demolished.  This distortion of human values is beyond the pale.  Meanwhile, many of the few reasonably aware folks are riveted on the Comex, wringing their hands over the price of gold and the availability of ammunition.  What are we coming to?

 

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Hi Sam,

We talked about this possibility recently on another thread, within a larger debate about zoning and the proper role of government.  I did not think we'd begin to see the demolishment of homes this soon, that's for sure.  Now we just have to wait and see if they go all the way, remove concrete slabs and zoning restrictions, and make the land productive again. 

 

 

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Strange times indeed!

I appreciated the article Sam. Thanks for posting it!

Who could have ever foreseen that demolition would become such a growth industry?

I wonder how much it costs to fuel a bulldozer and how much longer they'll be practical?

Does bulldozing new homes add to the GDP?

If a house falls in an abandoned neighborhood and no one hears, what is the sound of silence?

 

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

 Sam...you are quite the "propaganda" machine as of late. Where on earth do you find all this stuff? Lookout Davos, Sam is after your job!

Thanks for all your efforts.

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Sam -

Good post.  This was on TV a few weeks ago on one of the weekend news shows.

They had some of the Flint residents on and their support of the demo was overwhelming - the first homes razed were crack houses and other low-life magnets.  There was some reason in selecting which homes - all of them had been condemned and were unlivable.  The follow-up story is that most of the lots have been converted to community gardens or playgrounds and are being managed by the residents. 

Talk about finding and polishing a diamond in the rough.  Flint, MI was infamous for being a town on the decline.  Maybe this will turn things in the right direction.

Jeff -

Youshould have been in on the Two Beers With Steve session last night.  Davos was our guest speaker and had a lot of good stuff to put out.

So maybe we'll have "Daily Digest" with Davos and "Snippets with Sam".

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive
Patrick Brown wrote:

Now we just have to wait and see if they go all the way, remove concrete slabs and zoning restrictions, and make the land productive again. 

Morning Patrick -

The short answer is yes - see my post above.  In the news broadcast, the demo companies were taking everything out, levelling the ground and leaving in a condition to be turned into a big community garden or whatever else the residents wanted.

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A PLACE THAT WILL NOT BLEED

A PLACE THAT WILL NOT BLEED
   By Jerry Lee Miller
Chorus:
Walls are tumblin' down
This western town.
Can you hear that rumblin'  sound?
Better get yourself around
Before they're on the ground.
Before they're all rubble on the ground.

v1
I'm a leavin' Cheyenne, old faithful steed.
I'm a leavin' Wyoming,too.
Lookin' for a place that will not bleed.
When I find it, I will send for you.
v2
I'm a leavin' Detroit, Little GTOs.
I'm a leavin' my Chevy, too.
Lookin' for the  sweet of potatoes.
When I taste them  , I will send a few.

v3
I'm a leavin'  The Bulls. St Michael's dead.
I'm a leavin' the Yankees,too.
Lookin' for the faces of friends instead.
When I see them I will be with you!

BRIDGE
You can't hang on to Sloopy or to Snoopy and The Fonz.
You can't hold on to what we got.
You can't walk on the oceans, on the rivers or the ponds
But you can clean up all those fish that you have caught.
Clean 'em up and serve 'em up hot!
 
 

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

jerry_lee - you make a lot of valid points that should be considered.

While I think this is fine for Flint - if that's what the people want to do (as long as they pay for it).  But if they were going to pay for it, why would they need the Federal government to be involved?

This hits closer to home because my city; Pittsburgh, is high on their list.  I do not want the federal government coming here to build a "demolition" bubble.  Does anyone think for a minute that private property rights will not be violated in such a fine social cause?

If they wanted to help Flint and other "rust belt" cities, they could have insisted that Govt Motors start manufacturing here in the US instead of sending much future production over-seas.

The Fed is "ZIRP'n big banks, why not offer cities and states the same deal?  Let them have 0% loans to rebuild their infrastructure without federal interference.

Larry

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Larry -

I'm curious - why does the funding source matter if the remaining homeowners end up with urban blight removed, likely a corresponding drop in the crime rate as crack houses go away, and community gardens and parks left over?

Granted the Flint model may be the exception, but the homes were vacant and decrepit. 

Again, just curious to gain some insight into your perspective, but what private property rights are concerned about?  The previous (and long gone) homeowners?  Or the guy who has a bulldozer drive over his side lawn to take down a shell?

Or is your concern that someone gets booted from their home because the house is declared unlivable?  That wasn't the case in Flint so I'm not sure what the issue is.

I think we are going to see a lot of these initiatives - and at this point it seems like it's a positive move.  I also think your last paragraph may be somewhat prophetic........

Now I'm back to those pesky Chinese submarines.....

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Dogs,

The reason the funding source matters to me is that we are broke as a nation.  Our entitlement programs, pensions, 401-ks and life's savings are disappearing as we are being crushed by debt.  We need less, not more, federal debt and taxes.

No doubt there may be some local positives in such a program but I see it as fiscally irresponsible.  There is only one reason why ZIRP is not extended to states and cities and that is because the federal reserve banks are parasites on this nation.  It is beyond absurd that our nation continues to borrow from them when we have the power to directly issue it ourselves for free - or better yet, charge interest so that we may eliminate all federal income tax.

The reason why we are having a crisis, and it can only get worse, was best explained in Byron Dale's booklet "Tales from the Treasury" which states:

"The only way the currency can be DEBAUCHED is to change the currency from an evidence of wealth of the people to an evidence of the debts the people owe.  When the peoples wealth is monetized the economy works under the laws of prosperity.  When the peoples debts are monetized the economy works under the laws of destruction."

In one respect, the plan is very creative by the fed.  They orchestrated the "housing bubble" and that eventually popped.  Now in it's wake, they will create a "demolition bubble" - anything to keep adding more debt. 

Larry

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Hi Larry,

I used to live in Pittsburgh and was not really comfortable seeing it on the target list at first.  But, after reading the whole story I think I understand it differently now.  It's been 20 years since I lived in Pittsburgh, and even back then, there were areas of North Side that could have used some selective pruning with a bulldozer.  I don't think they're talking about picking a neighborhood and pushing everyone out, but mainly removing the houses that are abandoned.  Then, if anyone in the area does not want to stay there, they'd offer incentives to move to better areas.  Hopefully, that's as far as it would go, but there is a risk that once an area has been 90% cleared, they would force the remaining folks out due to lack of services.

You know, after having written that, I am starting to have doubts about whether or not they would force folks out despite saying they would not.  Imagine an area that did lose 90% of its houses to bulldozing.  It would not take long before arguments were made about having to maintain the infrastructure (sewers, roads, police and fire protection) for so few folks.  I could see it getting to the point where once a certain percentage was cleared, the rest would not have a choice.

It really is an odd time we're heading into.  Nothing is really out of the realm of possibility over the next 20 years.

Tim (now in Indianapolis)

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Tim_P - once a 'burger (Pittsburgh resident), always a burger...good to hear from you.  Hope you enjoyed the Stanley Cup - go Penguins!

Anyways, you're right that parts of northside were in terrible shape.  But it had been improving over the last 10 years (until recently), for example, the Mexican War Street homes (great architecture, lots of decay) were mostly upgraded to relatively expensive and trendy housing. 

On the other end of northside, H.J. Heinz had huge buildings that were no longer needed as jobs were moved away from Pittsburgh.  Heinz spared no expense in building beautiful brick fortresses.  They were turned to expensive loft apartments and condominiums.  The northside also has two new stadiums (PNC Park & Heinz Field) and a giant riverfront casino is being built on the edge of northside. 

There had been a move, especially with younger people, to move back to the city.  There is a lot more to do, lot's of cultural life and great convenience (you can walk many places, we're adding on to our subway system in crossing both rivers and we have some bicycle trails).  I'm a bit biased because I grew up in the city and really enjoyed it - then I got married (which I enjoy more but you know what I mean). 

Yea, we're an old rust belt city but we have been selected by Rand McNally, the Almanac, and USA Today - as being the most livable city each within the last 5 years and we always rank near the top.  We were the greenest city in America in 2004 and stay high on that list every year. 

I sure don't want the federal government intervening in deciding which areas go and stay.  If they knew what they were doing, Washington would be the most livable city.

Larry

Pittsburgh at night:
   

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Larry -

As an avid Dallas fan (Roger Staubach and I are fellow alumni) I harbor nothing but grudging respect for Pittsburgh.

Mrs. Dogs is a Steelers fan.........go figure.

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Dogs,

I hope when you introduce Mrs Dogs, you mention her as your better half.  

No, I don't usually like the cowboys but Roger Staubach has always been one of my favorite players.  He patriotically gave up a quicker pro-career by attending military academies in college.  I can't remember, but I think he played for more than one military college (besides the Naval Academy) and went to a military style high school. 

He was one of the best come from behind QBs ever to play the game (he didn't have to come back very often, usually he had a lead).

Please tell Mrs Dogs that I hold 4 Steeler season tickets, and they are excellent!  Let me know if you two want to come in for a game, unless they play Dallas, then she is very welcome... 

Larry

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Larry -

LOL.  She's my better 9/10s.  And the intro usually goes something like this.

"Hello, I'm a single mother of three and this is my oldest, Mr. Cat, sometimes he goes by Dogs"

Thanks for the very kind offer - we may take you up on it. Pittsburgh isn't too far a drive for us from Va Beach.  We made the run a few time when our son was going to Valparaiso University in Indiana.

Staubach went to New Mexico Military Institute and then transferred to the Naval Academy.  Unlike most colleges, when he transferred in he came in as a plebe with a year's worth of credits from NMMI.  You don't get to skip out on plebe year.  He came to Annapolis and spoke twice while I was there - he's a very impressive man and a truly great American.

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Outstanding Sam,

 

Here are two more stories, similar to the ones you posted but a different angle.

New York Times

And what about this:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contacts: Christina Kelly, Genesee County Land Bank
May 29, 2009 (810)2573088
ext. 527
Erin Caudell, Ruth Mott Foundation,
Applewood Initiative for Community and Gardening
(810) 2522644

Growing Food In Flint
A coalition of urban food gardening advocates, including the Genesee County Land Bank, Michigan State University Extension and the Applewood Initiative for Community and Gardening, has asked the Planning Commission of the City of Flint to change the city’s zoning ordinance to allow green houses for year round gardening, raising chickens and bees, and growing food for sale on vacant residential land in Flint. The zoning ordinance hasn’t changed much since it was enacted in1968 when the population of Flint reached nearly 200,000. Since then, Flint has lost about 45% of its population and approximately 32% of residential property is now abandoned. Zoning changes would make it easier to grow and raise food on vacant residential land in Flint. Before the Planning Commission will consider any changes to the zoning ordinance, they want to hear what citizens think. The coalition is hosting two outreach meetings on June 16 th and
July 14 th from 6-8:30 (details below). Both meetings will cover the same material. The purpose of the meetings is to share
successes and plans for food gardening in Flint and Genesee County, explain how existing regulations in Flint limit and help gardeners, and ask for public input on changing the city ordinance to allow for restricted use of hoop houses on vacant lots, managed and restricted keeping of bees, chickens and other animals, and growing food for sale.

Garden Outreach Meetings:
Tuesday, June 16th
6:00-8:30pm*
Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, 1083 Stewart Ave.
Flint, MI 48505
Tuesday, July 14th
6:00– 8:30pm*
Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church, 424 Kennelworth Ave.
Flint, MI 48503

* Locally grown and raised food from Flint’s Hoffman’s Deco Deli will be served.

 

(source)

Thank You Sam!

I was really loosing sleep over the things happening. Here where I live hasn't been hit too hard by the downturn (yet) and trying to get people to open their eyes isn't easy. It has weighed heavy on my soul. I am glad that in Flint, they appear to be turning lemons into lemonade. I pray they make a go of it!

C.

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive
DrKrbyLuv wrote:

Tim_P - once a 'burger (Pittsburgh resident), always a burger...good to hear from you.  Hope you enjoyed the Stanley Cup - go Penguins!

Anyways, you're right that parts of northside were in terrible shape.  But it had been improving over the last 10 years (until recently), for example, the Mexican War Street homes (great architecture, lots of decay) were mostly upgraded to relatively expensive and trendy housing. 

On the other end of northside, H.J. Heinz had huge buildings that were no longer needed as jobs were moved away from Pittsburgh.  Heinz spared no expense in building beautiful brick fortresses.  They were turned to expensive loft apartments and condominiums.  The northside also has two new stadiums (PNC Park & Heinz Field) and a giant riverfront casino is being built on the edge of northside. 

There had been a move, especially with younger people, to move back to the city.  There is a lot more to do, lot's of cultural life and great convenience (you can walk many places, we're adding on to our subway system in crossing both rivers and we have some bicycle trails).  I'm a bit biased because I grew up in the city and really enjoyed it - then I got married (which I enjoy more but you know what I mean). 

Yea, we're an old rust belt city but we have been selected by Rand McNally, the Almanac, and USA Today - as being the most livable city each within the last 5 years and we always rank near the top.  We were the greenest city in America in 2004 and stay high on that list every year. 

I sure don't want the federal government intervening in deciding which areas go and stay.  If they knew what they were doing, Washington would be the most livable city.

Larry

Pittsburgh at night:
   

That last game was something.  I am not sure I breathed for the last 6 minutes.  Now, the Pirates have to step up to the plate and do their part to restore Pittsburgh to the title 'City of Champions'.  Thanks for the photo above.  I tried to capture that same photo from Mt Washington in the late 70s for my high school photography class.  It did not turn out quite as nice as the one you posted.

So, why is Pittsburgh on the list then?  It makes me think that there was little actual research done when creating the list other than building a list of cities that lost a major industry.  Sure, Pittsburgh lost the steel industry, but it has come back and is now thriving.  Maybe what they need to do is instead of working to shrink cities, raze the abandoned buildings and host classes in urban gardening on the, now vacant, lots. 

Tim

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

 Hi Everyone

It is my opinion that the rust belt cities may not be the only cities to be bulldozed. Much of the development in the Southwest (as well as Southeast and other parts of the country including California) has been nearly a total waste from the point of view of building sustainable, healthy communities.

 

I’ve been a land developer in the metro Phoenix area for some 35 years now - most of which has been an ongoing fight with planners and politicians to allow a village style community development. Beat at every turn, each development ended up with a nasty sameness that the rest of the developments had no matter what I tried to do. All dependent on the almighty automobile - planners insisted on wide swaths of blacktop encouraging high speed traffic making it impossible/dangerous to go anywhere except by car. Safety they said - wide streets for visibility and room for emergency vehicles to turnaround etc. So safe, in fact, that parents must lock their children in the fenced back yards so they won’t be killed by some maniac speeding 75 miles to work at 60 mph.

 

No food grown in what was one of the most productive farm areas in the country because they had to have room for housing - besides all the food can be imported from Mexico or SE Asia, so why grow it here. Now you can’t by a local grown head of lettuce or a tomato or much of anything else you can eat.

 

It is all a sea of roof tops stretching for miles (nearly 100 miles from extreme east to extreme west) -- all of which, in my opinion, must be seriously revised so that work, food production. goods supply and residence can be integrated into walking distance areas/villages. 

 

Deletion of around 40% of the sprawl could provide the opportunity to consolidate neighborhoods around existing overbuilt shopping centers that could be re-vamped to be more like village centers ringed by residential and farm areas.

 

In my lifetime -- maybe not, but that’s how I think it should have been done in the first place, so maybe it will head that way in the longer term future as some of the population migrates elsewhere.

 

We do have great opportunity coming our way - now our collective job is to grab the ball and run like hell to get to the goal while we still can. We fumbled badly about 30 years ago, but maybe we can recover if we can agree on which way to go.

 

Jim

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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

It's good to see so many interested in this story. I thought it was a fascinating window on the times we live in.

Gungnir - you cracked me up with your Seattle bulldozing suggestion. Apparently not one of your favorite cities? It will certainly be a lot quieter where you're going!

Patrick - It was an interesting coincidence, wasn't it? Let's hope that common sense wins out and good things happen.

jerry_lee - I liked your questions. You have an interesting mind!

JAG - "...you are quite the "propaganda" machine as of late." That's what comes of being retired - you have time to find all sorts of stuff. I guess you might call me "mini-Davos"! However, Davos has a method to his "madness". Me - I'm just "mad".

Dogs - I think I saw it on a TV news show as well. That's about the only time I watch TV - catching up on national baloney and local news. The rest of the time I'm doing other things - e.g. finding interesting stories to post!

RNCarl - Thanks for sharing those two additional stories. It's always nice to get a different perspective. I hope you don't lose as much sleep now. What part of the country are you in?

jpitre - I can relate to what you're saying about Phoenix. I've driven through there a few times on my way to visit my oldest daughter who lives in Scottsdale. I don't know how anyone can become neighborly when they create an environment that encourages separation! Mayhaps this coming storm will finally open some eyes and those eyes will look to Flint, MI!

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RNcarl
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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Sam,

I'm in New England down the road a piece from Chris.

I live in one of New England's "Mill Town" cities. It's the biggest small town I have ever lived in.

C.

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DrKrbyLuv
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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

Russia's Pravda news source ran an article about this article (US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive).  Thought you might be interested in their take (excerpts)

In Flint, over 1,100 homes have been destroyed and the government, through Imminent Domain, has "purchased" 3,000 more, slated for the same end. Why I state "purchased" is because in America, the government has a right to snatch property from its owners and pay them a "fair market" price, that is, one that the bureaucrats set themselves as fair. What plans the owner had of these "blighted" areas is not taken into account. The Soviet Union had laws like that, well actually, since the Soviets owned the land they did as they pleased with the buildings and private property on it, for the betterment of the State of course.

This plan has now caught the attention of the federal government, and specifically president Obama. After further study by what are termed "think tanks" which supposedly think through problems but actually seem to be little more than sophisticated and slick propaganda machines, whose views are purchased, fifty American cities, primarily in the old industrialized northern regions, are now slated for shrinkage. 

The Digital Journal was even quoted as toting one of the benefits of destruction: "In a curious benefit to the environment, dozens of American cities are slated for shrinkage planning in the face of the deep recession and urban flight. Entire neighborhoods could face bulldozers."

As tens of thousands of Americans, daily, loose their houses and join the ranks of the homeless and Bernankivilles spring up all over (and these tent cities are now a fixture of Japan too) housing stock is being destroyed. Thank Christ, Russian never suffered from this particular blight during the Depression of the 90s. Soon, following our initial established fact of American extremism, this homeless labour will be used to construct the barracks/mass housing ghettos of the new Obama cities, as well as provide almost free labor for other great projects of the people

Why hold a gun to the peoples' heads and force them to work and to often die on ill conceived massive government projects? This was a model of Soviet inefficiency and bred rebellion to be suppressed by expensive and resource consuming terror. The American model is much more progressive and has learned from the mistakes of their Soviet proxies. It is much more efficient to absolutely impoverish a population until tent cities look and feel like a norm and than give them a "God" send of these national projects with extremely low pay and dangerous working conditions. They will flock to it, sacrificing life and their limbs with not a protest, considering themselves lucky to have any pay at all. Thus are willing slaves made.

Two things can be deemed from this:

One, this is an out and out admittance that the US is done and those industrial zones will never return and the empty factories will never be filled, thus the city infrastructure that supported them and was built around them is no longer needed.

Two, this is the first massive steps to full Marxist collectivism and the production of an almost free labour pool for huge government building projects.

Mistake this not, this shrinkage plan and its actions are absolutely nothing short of the initial steps of Marxists collectivism, which has only one conclusion: absolute control of the masses and liquidation of private property rights. All this is done with a smiling face and encouragements that this is critical for your survival and your childrens' futures. Well, it will be a smiling face at first, followed by a sharp bayonet, later.

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Morpheus
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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

 

[Ed. note: Removed by moderator]

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Morpheus
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Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

BTW. A critical point of the New World Order crowd, and you can verify this, is that for a NWO to take place, the US economy must be destroyed, and the population must be herded into densely populated urban centers for reasons of security, efficiency, and control.

I'm not making this stuff up. They've been screaming this stuff for TWENTY years. And I am beginning to become very very unnerved with the accuracy of their prognostications.

It scares the hell out of me.

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joe2baba
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Posts: 807
Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive

i think it was william jennings bryan who said

"destroy the farms and the cities will die, destroy the cities and they will be rebuilt"

good riddance to bad rubbish

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Ragnar_Danneskjold
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Posts: 100
Re: US cities may have to be bulldozed in order to survive
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

is your concern that someone gets booted from their home because the house is declared unlivable?  That wasn't the case in Flint so I'm not sure what the issue is.

In some cases, yes. The intent is to relocate people for the benefit of reducing government or utility maintenance costs, and probably to reduce blight in some cases.  The thinking behind this is that it isn't economical for government to patrol or utilities to service an area within a "city" where housing is not densely concentrated.  So, they'd trade the occupant a house in another area.  Maybe that is a good deal for the property owner, but maybe it isn't.

As a Michigander, and a libertarian, I'm opposed to this plan on principle.  I don't live in the blighted areas, but my money would be confiscated and directed to this purpose, whether or not it makes any sense economically.  And then there is the issue of ownership, but as you pointed out earlier, these are mostly abandoned properties and often delinquent in taxes, which might make it less of an issue.  However, in the cases where the government wants to forcefully relocate someone, I don't think that is right. 

And really, it isn't like police or fire protection would be non-existant anyway...I don't live in a town and have a fire station less than a mile from my home, and the county sheriff patrols the area (occasionally...usually they're at the fire station eating donuts or something).  If I want to live on a mostly vacate block (as many people do...just take a drive out of town), that should be my perogative.   

The sad part is we haven't had a hurricane to take care of the demolition work...it has been needed for a long time.  You'd think Katrina hit Detroit and Flint.  The people that stayed are not much different.  Part of me is glad the welfare queens are moving elsewhere to be someone else's problem.  In many cases, they're moving out of state.  But unfortunately that isn't always the case...some have just migrated to the west side of the state, which has had fewer problems in the past. 

Anyway, Michigan is a mess, and I think government + welfare have played a big part in making it so.   More government and welfare isn't going to solve the problem. 

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