In Atlas Shrugged Comes To Detroit Cato Institute Senior Fellow Dan Mitchell comments on a CNBC story from last Wednesday, Detroit to set services by neighborhood condition.
“In a perverse way, I’m glad that there are places such as Greece and Illinois. These profligate jurisdictions are useful examples of the dangers of bloated government and reckless statism.
“There also are some cities that serve as reverse role models. Detroit is a miserable case study of big government run amok, so I enjoyed a moment or two of guilty pleasure as I read this CNBC story about the ongoing decay of the Motor City.
“Fifty years ago, the book [Atlas Shrugged] was viewed as a dystopian fantasy. Today, Greece, Illinois, and Detroit are making Ayn Rand seem like a prophet.”
It is important to note and remember that while Detroit resembles a city ravaged by floods and tornados, what has happened to Detroit was not a natural disaster. Detroit is the result of human beings destroying their city with liberal social and economic policies; in every aspect of the decline of Detroit the people did it to themselves. They have fouled their own nest, and while the blight is now nearly everywhere they show little sign of halting the destruction.
Read all of Dan Mitchell’s column at Cato, which includes a prophetic quote from Atlas Shrugged, which may be the original application of the word “blight” to decaying urban conditions. The 16th Century origin of “blight” referred to an unpleasant skin condition.