Thursday, June 07, 2007

Hometown blues

Not that I really care anymore, since I haven't lived there for 20+ years, but I just looked up the old hometown, and looked at the census data.

In the time frame that roughly matches my lifetime, the population has declined by approximately 50%. The population's been dropping since the 1950s. This would seem to be a serious problem.

Sadly though, the people in charge are still clueless. The City Council takes long vacations to discuss urban problems, the Mayor uses City funds as his own personal bank account (allegedly), and throws a temper tantrum when asked about it, the schools are garbage (a study by the US government some years back found roughly half the population functionally illiterate), and on and on.

And they're unable- or unwilling- to do anything about it.

Fortunately, it's not my concern. Talk about "white flight", but the fact is that, to the best of my knowledge, every single person I know that lived in Detroit has either moved out or died. And that's over the last 20 years. To my knowledge, the last person of my acquaintance to live there was my uncle, and he passed away some 15 years ago.

It's a dead city, and it's providing a blueprint for other cities in Michigan. All the places that were built on the auto industry are following in Detroit's tracks. Flint, Saginaw, and now Lansing( my current home) are either dead or dying. All making the same mistakes. And it's not getting better, in part because of the idiot politicians around here. When you have a single-state depression, it's your own fault. Do something right- or at least, do something.

But they won't. And a lot of people are leaving. In a week or so, I'll be among them. Perhaps I'll be back, maybe even as soon as next year, but I don't see it. Other than my family, there's not really much here. Love the State, but the people... not so much.

So we'll see. It's been getting worse over the last 25 years, and the people running the State still haven't figured out what to do about it. So it just keeps getting worse.

Ah well. Just a few more days.....

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