Our whole country has been negatively affected by the loss of manufacturing. Detroit was the center of this once mighty industry, more so than anyone who doesn't live there could imagine. The Big Three automakers opened factories in the South many decades ago and have since outsourced even farther, building plants in Mexico, China, Southeast Asia, etc. Wall Street and the stockholders rejoice as the hourly workers have lost the war with management.
Ford has been the only proactive company, working with the union to implement profit-sharing versus automatic raises. This cutting-edge agreement in the 1990s has been fruitful, as Ford is profitable and didn't require any government bridge loans recently. They just announced the hiring of 3,000 white-collar workers. Perhaps GM and Chrysler will follow suit and forge a new relationship with their unions.
The flight of Detroit residents to the suburbs is unparalleled. No region builds more urban freeways than Southeast Michigan, and the lands surrounding the city are very enticing, with countless lakes, northern hardwood groves and charming old villages, reminiscent of New England. The metro region has experienced a gain in population while the inner city diminishes. The response has been to rely on government programs to stimulate the economy and stop the down slide. This has resulted in a bare-bones survival mode there, and it has run its course.
It's a challenge in our divided country to be objective in this situation. Both the free market and the government have failed the once-mighty Motor City. The auto industry put profits ahead of everything, and the workers lost out. The government created program after program that eventually failed, with corruption acting as the nail in the coffin.
What Detroit needs, and most of our cities need, too, is a new relationship between business and government. The back-and-forth fight for control has hurt the residents of that great city. Neither entity has all the answers. It's time to start over and re-create one of the world's truly innovative and ingenious, hard-working cities. There really is no choice at this point.
Road to ruin?
Regarding "Thank goodness we're not Detroit" (Our Views, July 24): Yeah, we are. We just haven't been at it long enough. But we have Democrats running the city here.
The editors did everything but tell you Democrats have run the Detroit city government for more than 30 years. All the big cities headed for bankruptcy are Democrat-controlled, for 20- or 30-plus years. The same kind of Democrat is president. What do you think will happen next? Obamacare is a Democrat economic policy. It is destroying business in America. It is destroying staffs at colleges and universities. A carbon tax via the EPA is destroying the coal business. EPA auto mileage requirements will soon finish destroying the auto industry. Energy policy is choking the oil industry. I could cite many more, space permitting.
Where will the tax revenue come from to pay for government and "food and shelter" benefits? Thank goodness we're not Detroit yet, but as my neighbor says, "Soon come."
About those two trash containers soon to be issued - 95 gallons for garbage and 65 gallons for recycling: Pickup for garbage is twice a week, recycling once. That totals 255 gallons of waste per family. Quick search shows (conveniently for us math-challenged) that the average U.S. household has 2.55 members. One hundred gallons of waste per person, per week strikes me as over-capacity.
My objection is not to the handling, but to the storage space required.
TampaBetter vetting needed
At the present I don't think anyone, including those who voted for Obamacare, have a clue how this law will affect people of different income levels or businesses.
Anyone in Congress presenting a bill or voting on it should actually read it and discuss the ramifications before it is passed. In other words, instill a "what-if" or "how-does-it-affect" thinking into the process.
LaVerne E. Jones
I am an investigative writer who has been researching the state-mandated teaching evaluation system for four years. Many teachers and administrators throughout the state have shared their views on this controversial issue.
The recent termination of a veteran, multicertified Hillsborough County Public Schools teacher facilitated me to investigate and ultimately demand that Gov. Rick Scott initiate an ethics investigation of the Hillsborough County School Board, including its superintendent. You may contact any of your local school board members for a copy of my "Investigative Report-June 10, 2013."
Legislative representatives in your district have been apprised as well.
Teachers in Hillsborough County, who have expressed fear of retaliation by administration for voicing their opposition to the teaching evaluation system in Hillsborough, now have the opportunity to make a difference and stand up to this arrogant, modern-day bully with assured action.
Frank E. Orzechowski