|Reckless Abandonment: Corporate logos were removed, but the castaway |
company carcasses remain (Fisher Plant - The Moter(less) City 2009)
Over the last decades hundreds of firms have simply walked away from stewardship and management of their real estate and concerns in Detroit.
In the book, "THE RUINS OF DETROIT" and others like it feature pictures of the grand and ornate high rise office buildings, libraries, schools, and hotels just left to rot. This reality sends a signal to the present. In some cases with fixtures and contents in place, we see places as though the management simply walked out, valuable real estate abandoned! And walk out they did!
It wasn't minorities who abandoned the billions dollars of capital assets moldering down as rotting, moldy architecture and as the visually evocative "war zones" comprised of abandoned industrial sites. It was the elites, the powerful, the men of money, and the politically connected who made/allowed this to happen, not the workers and the service staffs.
Putting the "walk-away" abandonment curse on the shoulders of an underclass is not and was not a "class act"; it was and is dishonest--a crime.
The vicious world of the landlord, rampant graft, and the spoils of the speculators is all around. This crisis was and is fueled further by greedy mortgage companies and fraud-promoting banks.
Detroit was deep, deep in trouble before the Great George W. Bush Recession. There were indicators revealing the impact of a devastating Michigan 'One-State-Depression' to be seen everywhere in Detroit prior to fall 2008. Events triggered then have loosed the bonds of civility and escalated urban hopelessness, thus creating a tinderbox for social unrest.
Charlie LeDuff made this salient point in his article, "The Ghost Mayor", March 17, 2012 stating:
"The governor might then use the only stick left in his bag. LET THE CITY DROWN."
"Already vendors and contractors are not getting paid and the city will run out of cash in a month. That means cops, paramedics and tax collectors won't get paid. Ambulances won't get fixed. Parks won't open.
"Under that scenario, you can expect a long, hot, bloody summer."
Let’s hope that such is not the case.
Detroit has corporate rot at its very heart. It's former opulence and importance has been replaced with decadence, social decay, crime, and abandonment--all topped with a rich coating of cynicism and blame-speaking as a direct result of corporate malfeasance and neglect. Now, to walk away, to maliciously place exaggerated blame on the current elected officials and the managers of infrastructure (in tatters for years) is perverse.
To exalt at the destruction and ultimate downfall of what remains of this once great international city is a civic sin of huge magnitude and scope.
|Golden Age of Upper Class Fun: Downtown Detroit Fisher Building |
Penthouse Playground in 1925 (Michigan Historical Society Archive)
'One Tough Nerd' Snyder & Company of corporatists (BLM) have lots of plans. They hope to move in and take over, by dictatorial/undemocratic means. What which remains (be it fallow ground or crumbling ruins) is visioned as theirs to rebuild, making a portion of the city into a renaissance of re-invention. To do this they must do the "down and dirty" to those who for years have been trapped in a city with over three fourths of its residents who are on some form of assistance. Power must transfer directly into their hands.
Can we untangle the city from its mass of floatsam and start a New Detroit? To do so will take a profound, pro-active commitment, determination, a new vision, and yes, a ocean of capital both financial and human.
On the Reader:
Observations and iconic images on the blog "The Motor (less) City: Post-industrial Detroit" and Photo Archive.
"Detroit: Behemoth 'Motor City' Whale Fights for Its Life as Snyder's EM & Scavengers Circle" - "Michigan GOP's Power Grab Thievery: Patterson's 30 Year Jim Crow / EM Plot to Steal Detroit's Royal Jewels & Liquid Assets" and the ongoing Emergency Management Jim Crow / EM Plantation SERIES.