As most of you know, the City of Detroit filed the largest municipal bankruptcy in history yesterday as it realized that there was just no way to restructure the nearly $20 billion of debt it has accrued. It’s easy to say, good it’s a horrible place. Outside of Motown and General Motors in its heyday and to a lesser extent now, it truly is an awful place. Please understand that I may be a touch jaded given the number of times that I’ve been robbed in my travels to the Motor City.
That said, I truly love places that are a little seedy, a bit dangerous, and always keep you on your toes. Detroit surpassed this a long time ago, it’s just a scary place that if you’re unfortunate enough to require emergency assistance, the “lucky” people who actually see a response wait nearly 50 minutes on average. Of course, the lack of responses cannot be calculated into this response time and they are quite common.
In his 2021 year-end letter, Baupost's Seth Klarman looked at the year in review and how COVID-19 swept through every part of our lives. He blamed much of the ills of the pandemic on those who choose not to get vaccinated while also expressing a dislike for the social division COVID-19 has caused. Q4 2021 Read More
Bankruptcy Filing Will Affect Residents
For all genuinely bad people that do indeed call Detroit home, it’s important to remember the hundreds of thousands of good people who also live in Detroit. Good people whose lives are going to get considerably worse given yesterday’s Chapter 9 filing. Thank you Smokey Robinson, he “Seconds that Emotion.”
In order to live in Detroit, you need a little bit of optimism and some was on display yesterday following the news. It’s easy to forget that there are neighborhoods that have undergone a renaissance of sorts as artists, freelancers, and entrepreneurs have flocked to the city with the promise of buying their first homes with little to no money down. Just as Alaska makes payments from the oil pipeline to his residents, Detroit has on a number of occasions given people homes and paid them to renovate abandoned properties.
Hopefully This Will Be A Way Out
“This is not a good thing, but with the desperate situation of Detroit, hopefully this will be a way out,” said 64 year-old Pastor Roy Ferguson as he worked on a stand that will offer barbecued ribs this weekend. “Hopefully, it will mean a turnaround. We need it.”
“At this point, whatever helps the city, I am for,” said Detroit resident Kori Loewe, 30. “I don’t know the ins and outs of what it is going to mean for us as residents, but the city needs help.”
Dolphin Michael, 61, who worked for the Detroit Fire Department for 38 years, said he saw it coming, and took action. “A couple weeks ago, I withdrew all my pension money and put it into a private account,” he said.
Let’s hope he wasn’t alone in this decision.