Speramus Meliora; Resurget Cineribus…again, Jesse Jackson opposed to displacing abandonment, and a case study in supply and demand


Mrs. O’Leary should shoot that damn cow
Remember learning about the Great Chicago Fire in history class and how 19th century cities were basically tinderboxes on the brink of burning down? That’s pretty much the reality of life in present day Detroit. As we learned during last night’s 85 fires, a little wind and an illegal power hook-up can pretty much burn Detroit to the ground. Also a dangerously undermanned, underequipped fire department. Like in Backdraft! Damn you Alderman Swazack. Get yourself a fire extinguisher, a garden hose, and pray for Chapter 9. This town is maybe one budget cut away from open sewers and roving gangs of cockney pickpockets. (Freep)

A bellwether day of awfulness
If the 85 fires (all caused by flammable high winds) wasn’t enough of a punch in balls, how about the shooting at Mumford High? On the first day of school. Robert “Bob” Bobb’s late bus doesn’t seem like a big deal anymore. Our good friend, the Rev. Reverend David Murray, explained on WDET last summer how the school board’s stellar efforts reduced school violence. He ignored the recent Cody shooting because it technically happened away from school grounds. Using that logic we can discount this shooting because it started with a summertime feud. When school wasn’t in session. Everything is super. (Freep)

Really? Was it really that easy? Seriously?
The state’s budget mess is solved! After all those budget battles of the last few years, turns out all Lansing had to do was refinance a little debt, make a 3% cut, and durka doo everything is swell. Hey, that’s great. Thanks to the super work of Jennifer Granholm, Mike Bishop, and Andy Dillon, Michigan’s next governor will have a super-easy time now that Michigan’s structural budget deficits have been solved forever. Pay no attention to that MBT surcharge behind the curtain. Again, everything is super. Thanks Team Granholm-Bishop-Dillon! (DetNews)

Jesse Jackson’s cognitive dissonance
If Jesse Jackson insists on hanging around Detroit, he really should pay resident income tax. The guy literally won’t go away. It’s getting ridiculous. Yesterday, the once relevant Jackson voiced his opposition to urban farming. And yes, the whole let’s-grow-enough-food-to-feed-ourselves hippie claptrap is obnoxious and smacks of WorldNet Daily “crisis garden…also gold” paranoia, but that isn’t Jackson’s problem with citified agriculture. He’s afraid urban farming will displace residents because abandoned houses will be demolished. We wouldn’t want to displace residents of abandoned houses. That would be awful. (Freep)

Who is building new homes?
Supply and demand is a pretty basic concept. When there’s a surplus in supply, it means there’s more of something than there is demand for that said something in the marketplace. This is always the case except in the housing market where, despite nose-diving home values, record foreclosures, and a stagnant population, people are still building news homes. And other people pretend increasing housing supply while demand is at an all-time low is a good thing for the economy. It’s probably a good time to re-read Michael Lewis’ The Big Short. Not as a cautionary tale but as a how-to manual. I’ll short my way to a Caribbean-edition of Dyspathy. (Crains)

Things that should surprise no one
Who would’ve thought the scion of the Powerhouse Gym empire might turn out to be a violent psychopath. After all, that Powerhouse logo with that juiced guy lifting the giant barbell in no way reflects the kind of culture that condones ‘roid rage or unnecessarily violent machismo. It’s like those guys on Jersey Shore. They only get into fights because people keep hassling them. Same thing with Peter Dabish. He probably has a good explanation for (allegedly) torturing and killing his girlfriend. (DetNews)

Categories : State of the State



Jesse who?


@WF If we don’t build homes, then what will the USA actually manufacture????


As a home building/renovating specialists, I wonder how many of those homebuilding permits are for actual new homes or just renovation permits of foreclosed homes. Many foreclosures have had their HVAC and plumbing fixtures removed. You would need to get a permit to obtain a new CofO if the structure has been empty for a given amount of time.

fagin for school board
September 8th, 2010 at 12:34 pm

transforming street urchins into roving gangs of cockney pickpockets.
if he gets licensed on-line and runs as “reverend fagin” he might have a shot.


“If you get all of us together, we ain’t got a gang, we’ve got an army.”


The shooting at Mumford illustrates what we lowly DPS teachers have been saying for years. What exactly are we or the school district supposed to do about someone waiting outside the building until dismissal and then shooting two kids? You can’t evaluate schools without evaluating the communities and families. Any or all of those parts are broken in most parts of Detroit. But help is on the way. I understand the Skillman Foundation will soon begin to annually list the 40 worst neighborhoods and 40 worst families in Detroit. These neighborhoods and families will then be reconstituted. Charter Families and Charter Communities will replace these failing entities. Skillman’s goal is for 95% of Detroit families and communities to be above the average of Detroit families and communities by 2015.


@WF I expected a YouTube clip of “Burning Down the House” for your header.


This bears repeating from the Freep fire article:

Detroit Fire Department asks for help

McNamara said they don’t have enough fire companies to respond. “We’ve had aid before, just to help out in a specific area, but this time is different. We don’t have anyone available. … It used to be we could throw enough resources to knock something big down and work our way into it. The day of reckoning has come.”

Though the city does not have enough fire trucks, McNamara said the main thing is the city doesn’t have the firefighters to staff them. Eight or nine fire companies of 65 are shut each day, he said.

McNamara said the firefighters’ union has been telling the city since the beginning of the decade that the department does not have enough companies and enough firefighters. He said he believes Mayor Dave Bing is doing the best he can, but noted that “the piper’s gotta be paid someday.”

The union president said the average of Detroit’s firefighters is 43. “Firefighting should be a young person’s job,” he said.

“I hope this opens the city and the fire department’s eyes,” McNamara added. “ To have a city that people want to live in, you have to have public safety.”


Just an irrelevant note: Sonny Eliot is retiring from WWJ on Friday. With his departure, the mother-in-law joke has lost its last great practitioner. WWJ management denied reports that Eliot’s departure is due to the rising cost of embalming fluid.


Ah, now Teach, that’s mean. Sonny is one of the last true gentlemen on the air. Be kind. I will miss him–and the way he stirs things up off the air and rattles every one else’s cage. I hope he enjoys his retirement!


Tuesday just exemplified why Detroit isn’t a city that people want to live in as it perfectly illustrated the city’s two greatest failures: public safety and public education. (Is there such a thing as a disharmonic convergence?) Until those two disaster zones are remedied all the king’s horses and all the king’s men can’t put Detroit back together again.


All the Bings horses and all the Bings men?


oh, Casspark, all the Bings horses will have their shoes stolen and be up on blocks!


the east side always has to ruin everything for everyone.


@Julie: Yeah, OK, that was mean of me. I didn’t grow up with him, and I do find him annoying. Maybe it’s the case of the uncle you like even though he is an old fart telling jokes from the 50’s. But you can’t expect others to like him. On the other hand, I suspect I’d annoy the hell out him and I’m willing to bet that more people enjoy hearing him than me, so I guess he wins.

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