Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Rescuing Detroit: Can It Work This Time?: Yes it can
If you look at Detroit from the outside as your just entering it, it looks like a great big American City. With big beautiful buildings and architecture and Great Lake by it, with a lot of business's around it. It doesn't look like a city thats lost half of its population the last ten years or so. Detroit up until around 2000, was a city of 1.5M people about the size of Philadelphia, the sixth or seventh largest city in America. Today its still a big city but of around 750K people, they've lost half of their population and Tax Base the last ten years. And if you look at Detroit from the outside and didn't know that, you probably wouldn't of guessed that. But thats just and outside view of what was once a great big American City and one of the greatest cities in America if not the World. But why has Detroit lost so much ground, especially since Cleveland which is just about a couple hours south of Detroit has gained so much ground. But why has Detroit come so far down, it used to be a city where people could live in it. Get a good job in the city, raise their kids without having to worry about them being attacked or killed. And think they could live well in Detroit forever but thats no longer the case. The economy plummeted but hopefully has started to come back. Its now perhaps the most dangerous big city in the country if not the most dangerous big city in America. And has one of the worst Public School Systems in America if not the worst. The "Great Recession" of 2008 hit Detroit and its Auto Industry harder then any other Big City and Michigan harder then any other State in the Union. And without the Auto Bailout, other then Ford Motor Company, there wouldn't be any Auto Industry in America right now. But the problems were already there for Detroit.
You can have the most dedicated workforce in America but if your not producing enough High Skilled workers, your not going to have the workers for the good jobs. They have to improve their Public Education System, by rewarding good educators, paying good educators more. Allowing competition in the Public School System with Public School Choice. So students aren't trapped in bad schools, reward good educators, retrain or eliminate bad ones. Reward good schools and reform or eliminate bad ones. And equalize the funding for the schools so schools in Low Income areas can get the resources they need to do a good job.
The Auto Industry coming back to Detroit is great and they need that but the Auto Industry needs to diversify like making cars that are more Fuel Efficient for example. And they need to build other things, just like the rest of the country. We need to rebuild our Manufacturing Industry, start building things in America again and then having good Trade Agreements so we can sell our products oversees that are Made in America. That also includes Trade Adjustment for people who lose their jobs because of trade. So they can get the skills that they need to get another good job in another field. And then we have to stop encouraging American Company's to send jobs oversees.
Last but never least, no one is never going to want to live in Detroit if they don't feel safe there. They need to have enough cops, breakup Organized Crime and gangs. Get those people out of those activities and re skill them to work in Legal Professions so they can be Productive Citizens. Detroit can come back just like the Tigers did a few years ago and become a Competitive and Great Big City again. But there are certain things they have to do to accomplish that to make it happen.
Click on the link of the blog to see a video from Forbes on the Rebirth of Detroit