On Tuesday, the New York Times came out with an exposé on the outlandish fees Detroit is paying lawyers and consultants to guide it through the biggest municipal bankruptcy in United States history. According to the Times, the city has already shelled out more than $19 million for these firms’ advice, and contract amounts could cost as much as $60.6 million.
What’s wrong with a museum displaying knock-off art?
A plan to foster innovation amidst bankruptcy
The old Argonaut Building has a big place in Detroit’s history. From 1936 to 1956, it was the home of the General Motors Research Laboratory, the first in-house research & design studio in the automotive industry.
Obamacare took a big step forward on Tuesday night, when the Michigan Senate approved an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program. The state House is likely to back the same measure, as early as next week. And while the program requires a special federal waiver, the Obama Administration is likely to grant it.
In the depths of the Great Recession, in the early spring of 2009, as the country was scrambling for ways to stop a seemingly bottomless plunge, the economic development guru Richard Florida weighed in with a high-profile prescription on the cover of the Atlantic, titled “How the Crash Will Reshape America.” In the piece, which Florida later expanded into a book, The Great Reset, he argued that the recession was going to leave behind an entirely new
President Obama has spent a lot of time talking about his rescue of the auto industry. And so perhaps it’s not surprising his detractors have seized on Detroit’s municipal bankruptcy as proof that the bailout was actually a failure—or, at least, not a success.
When rumors that the Detroit Institute of Art (DIA) might sell its treasured paintings to balance the city’s ledgers first surfaced in May, I wrote a defense of the museum on cultural grounds.
As if the news that a major American city is headed into bankruptcy isn’t bad enough, we now also must contend with an inevitable byproduct: inane, ungrounded commentary on Detroit’s decline. I make no claims to be the world’s greatest expert on the city, but I’ve done enough reporting in and about Detroit to have a rough sense of what people are getting wildly wrong.
Detroit was once the nation’s fourth most-populous city. Today, it became the largest American city to file for bankruptcy. The Motor City has been in decline for decades; its population peaked at 1.8 million in 1950 and declined to just 700,000 people in the last Census. Predictably, its economy faltered—especially over the last decade. The unemployment rate is over 18 percent; fewer than half of adult residents are employed.
Why Detroit should keep its art
Why Detroit should keep its art.