Remember the TV series Stargate? Near instant transportation, across interstellar space, exploring strange new worlds...no, that was Star Trek! (See? I told you it would get geeky!) The images of the bleak Detroit landscape, looking like Dresden after the fire bombing, reminded me of an episode of Stargate, on planet P3A-194, home planet of a people called the Volians.
The planet was largely agricultural, sparsely populated and near idyllic - perhaps something Al Gore might envision? The Volians' main trading partner was a race called the Aschen, who had "saved" them from a pandemic some two hundred years before.
Spoiler alert: If you haven't seen it by now, don't blame me when you watch it on Netflix. As the episode develops, the SG-1 team discovers that 200 years before, the Volians had a thriving industrial society, perhaps a century advanced over 20th century Earth. The pandemic that changed their society was in reality a bioweapon, designed by the Aschen, who then conveniently showed up with a "cure", with a side effect, which caused sterility. Their population decimated, the Volians could no longer sustain an industrial economy, and devolved to a simpler agrarian economy, which, coincidentally benefited the Aschen, as the Volians became a de facto colony of theirs, unable to do anything except to accept the yoke their new masters had fitted for them.
The impression came from the fact that the great Volian cities, two centuries gone, had been buried beneath farm and pasture land, with only bits of "iron weed", the tops of the city's skyscrapers, poking up above the soil, providing impediments to the farmers who would then have to plow around them until they could be removed, with, of course, the help of their benevolent overlords.
And I thought of the tens of thousands of homes in Detroit, fallen to, or about to fall to the bulldozer. As the city shrinks, and some of the homes fall over of their own accord from neglect, I can envision Detroit becoming pasture land once again. The opportunity is there to build great swaths of parkland and green space, making Detroit an idyllic city and one of environmentalists' dreams...if the city only had the money for grass seed and landscaping and city workers to maintain them.
So, no great parks. No greenswards of land separating idyllic communities. Just a statue of an upraised fist, signifying the type of colonoscopy that investors could expect from the city of Detroit. Maybe when the price of land falls a little lower, agri-business can come in and buy up old neighborhoods and plow around the "iron weed"? At least there's still a market for food and other agricultural products.
I suppose, if there is a greater parallel, it would be that the once great city of Detroit had been infected with liberalism. Hard working men and women, and people with vision, created the foremost automotive manufacturing center in the world. The abundance of riches created by the sale of Detroit Iron, filled art museums with literally billions of dollars of works of art. If they have any sense, I would think that Detroiters (Detroitniks?) should swallow their pride and auction off the contents of their art museums so that they can pay for the promises they made to their employees and their families. I'd start with that huge fist. The time for defiance was when you had something someone else wanted to buy, and you didn't desperately need the money.
Liberalism came with a cure...out of wedlock children? Facing your parents' displeasure and and discipline over an unwanted pregnancy? No problem! We'll give you a small stipend from the public treasury, so that you can be independent of your parents. (But, not the government.) We'll even work with our PR division in Hollywood to come up with a new name for your condition. You can be a "baby mama". And forget the "I" word. It would be in poor taste to call your children "illegitimate", no matter how many kids you have from however many different fathers. We're from the government and we're here to help.
Of course, we won't be able to help you provide a strong male role model for your sons to emulate, but since they're plagued with absentee fathers, we can build prisons for them! Cradle to early grave coverage, just like "Julia"!
LBJ's "Great Society" did more to break up black and minority families than the Great Depression and the KKK combined. If a man has more than one "baby mama", he should be stigmatized, not lionized. There need to be harsher consequences for those who procreate irresponsibly. It doesn't mean eliminating welfare, it means reforming it, with a goal of building more stable families, who might one day lift themselves above welfare.
And don't get me started on tax reform and bureaucratic regulations that suffocate businesses great and small.
If the Aschen had descended upon Detroit, how could they have destroyed it any more fully than modern liberalism has done? At least the Aschen helped and taught those few who remained to become farmers, and bought their crops from them. Liberals will just move on to create another "worker's paradise" somewhere else.
Where's SG-1 when you really need them?
Cross posted at Proof Positive