Tag Archives: poor

HIWAY AMERICA-LIVING IN THE TUNNELS OF LAS VEGAS

Standard

LAS10

The irony is hard to overlook. There are few, if any, cities on earth where the show of wealth and consumption is so shamelessly on display, and yet hidden beneath the surface of Las Vegas, another world exists. See video below.

LAS9 LAS8 LAS7 LAS6 LAS5 LAS4 LAS23 LAS LAS VEGAS

LIVING IN THE TUNNELS OF LAS VEGAS

https://youtu.be/2VLQkdq74kk

Advertisements

RAW PORTRAITS OF HOMELESS AMERICA -VIDEO

Standard

imagesTNR1GN5EBNHUYBNHUYBNHUYmaxresdefault

Raw Portraits OF Homeless in  America

hqdefaul

203 CFR MNB MNJ MNB LKOI MNHYimagesJKQOZOKG imagesTNR1GN5E BNHUY NMUH

https://youtu.be/-7plw-gqx6o

HIWAY AMERICA-THE DECAY OF DETROIT

Standard

William Livingstone HouseMichigan Central StationAtrium, Farwell Buildinghttp://blogs.denverpost.com/captured/2011/02/07/captured-the-ruins-of-detroit/2672/

Anatomy of Detroit’s Decline

In a matter of decades, Detroit went from one of America’s most prosperous cities to one of its most distressed. Here is a look at how the collapse of this metropolis – battered by financial missteps, racial tensions and leadership lapses – culminated in insurmountable debt that led the city to file for bankruptcy.

Reliance on a Single Industry

A workman adjusted a Ford Mustang at the final assembly line in a Detroit-area factory on Nov. 6, 1967. Preston Stroup/Associated Press

The expansion of the auto industry nearly a century ago fueled a growth spurt that made Detroit the fourth largest city in the country. By 1950, the population peaked at almost 1.85 million as people moved to Detroit to work at the Big Three auto companies: Ford, General Motors and Chrysler. But it was at the height of this prosperity that the manufacturers began to restructure, and the risks of the city’s reliance on a single industry became apparent, according to Thomas J. Sugrue’s essay “Motor City: The Story of Detroit.

First, there was decentralization. Strikes, inspired by union negotiations and a refusal by blacks and whites to work side by side, were halting progress, according to “Detroit, Race and Uneven Development,” co-written by Joe T. Darden. Factories were built in the suburbs and in neighboring states so that if there was a protest in one factory, work could still continue elsewhere. But as the factories spread out, so too did the job opportunities.

When the industry then experimented with automation, replacing assembly-line jobs with machinery, tens of thousands of jobs were lost. The industry shrank even more during the energy crisis in the 1970s and the economic recession in the 1980s. And foreign competition caused profits to plummet.

As auto jobs moved elsewhere and the region aged, Detroit’s labor costs — retiree health care costs, especially — increased substantially.

Though other cities experienced their own booms and busts, Detroit suffered more because it didn’t diversify, said Kevin Boyle, a Detroit historian who has written extensively about his native city. Places such as Chicago and Pittsburgh relied on other areas – like banking or education – beyond the industries that started their success.

The auto industry “was like Silicon Valley in the 1980s,” Mr. Boyle said. It was doing so well, he said, that Detroit officials didn’t see a need to do anything differently.

 

RELATED

Racial Tensions

A National Guardsman in Detroit during the riots of 1967. Associated Press

Tensions between the races have been high since the 1940s, when Southern blacks began moving to Detroit in search of work at automobile factories, said Mr. Boyle, the historian.

As the migration of blacks who swept into Detroit became especially intense, middle-class whites began moving to the newly built suburbs. But violent 1967 riots turned this stream into a torrent.

“It’s really hard to overstate how deep the fear was, on both sides of the color line,” Mr. Boyle said.

And after the riots, Detroit failed to bounce back, Mr. Boyle said. Businesses followed their customers. Thousands of houses were abandoned as the city’s population plunged.

“In some cities like Chicago, Boston and maybe New York, people say to themselves, ‘I want to be in this neighborhood where I grew up, where my grandparents live or where my synagogue is’ — that really roots people in place,” he said. “Detroit didn’t work that way.”

During the 1950s, the city lost 363,000 white residents while it gained 182,000 black residents. In 1950, the population was 16 percent black, and by the time of the 1967 riot it had grown to a third. Today, about 82 percent of the city’s population is black.

The Rev. Charles Williams II, who leads the Detroit chapter of the National Action Network, said little had been done to ease tensions. Those strained relations have hindered the city’s efforts toward economic progress.

“Race has basically been used as a tool to pit people against each other,” he said. “There’s a sincere, in-depth hate. Folks in the city have been taught to not trust those in the suburbs. Folks in the suburbs don’t trust those in the city.”

 

RELATED

Shortcomings of Leadership

Mayor Coleman A. Young of Detroit at an event in 1980. Richard Sheinwald/Associated Press

The financial crisis facing Detroit was decades in the making, caused in part by a trail of missteps, suspected corruption and inaction. Here is a sampling of some city leaders who trimmed too little, too late and, rather than tackling problems head on, hoped that deep-rooted structural problems would turn out to be cyclical downturns.

Charles E. Bowles, backed by the Ku Klux Klan, was in office for seven months in 1930 before people demanded his removal. His ascension to the mayor’s office was followed by a spike in crime, and he was suspected to be linked to some of Detroit’s underworld figures, according to “Detroit: A Biography” by Scott Martelle. “The stories of gangland feuds and killings were diversions from the deeper agony that spread across Detroit in the 1930s,” Mr. Martelle wrote. “Unemployment was high and deep poverty endemic.”

Edward Jeffries, who served as mayor from 1940 to 1948, developed the Detroit Plan, which involved razing 100 blighted acres and preparing the land for redevelopment. The area sat vacant for several years, and the 7,000 black residents who were displaced moved to neighboring areas where whites, in turn, left. Rather than ending blight, the project simply redistributed it.

Albert Cobo was considered a candidate of the wealthy and of the white during his tenure from 1950 to 1957. He declined federal money for housing projects and facilitated the construction of freeways. Highways were being built across the country that encouraged suburbanization, but while the rest of the nation was expanding, Detroit’s population was shrinking as people used the newly built roadways to leave.

Coleman A. Young was seen as a divisive figure in the 20 years he served as mayor. He won his first mayoral election in 1973, largely on the promise to ease tension between the police and black residents. But while many blacks saw him as a hero who pledged to fight crime, some whites felt he wasn’t looking out for their interests. Mr. Young seemingly breezed to second, third and fourth terms without making the expected bridge-building racial appeals. Isabel Wilkerson, writing in The New York Times in 1989, said the mayor, running in a city in which 70 percent of the voters were black, seemed “to revel in the sort of polarization that other politicians dread.” Though Mr. Young was credited with revitalizing the waterfront, the rest of downtown was often compared to a war zone, with neighborhoods crumbling, businesses boarded up and poverty remaining high.

Kwame M. Kilpatrick, who led Detroit from 2001 to 2008, was nicknamed the “hip-hop mayor” when first elected at 31, in part for his larger-than-life persona, flashy suits and the diamond stud in his ear. He brought new attractions to the city’s riverfront and much-needed business investment downtown, but he also increased the city’s debt obligations to fill budget gaps. After a series of scandals he resigned in 2008 and pleaded guilty later that year to obstruction of justice charges, served four months in jail and was ordered to pay $1 million to the city. He was behind bars two years later for hiding assets from the court, and in October he was sentenced to 28 years in prison after he was found guilty of racketeering, fraud and extortion.

Dave Bing, a former professional basketball star, took office in 2009 pledging to solve Detroit’s fiscal problems, which by then were already overwhelming. During his term, there were numerous announcements of cuts to the city’s work force, efforts to fill annual budget deficits and urgent calls for sacrifices from labor groups. Then in March the state appointed Kevyn D. Orr, a veteran lawyer, as an emergency manager to oversee the city’s operations, rendering Mr. Bing virtually powerless. Mr. Bing announced in May that he would not run for re-election. And in November Mike Duggan, a former hospital executive who campaigned with the backing of Detroit’s business leaders, was elected mayor.

 

RELATED

Lack of an Efficient Transit System

Detroit’s once-glamorous Michigan Theater, which is now used as a parking garage. Sean Doerr/WNET.org

In the hometown of the auto industry, public policies encouraged a car culture, with more money being invested in building highways rather than a public transportation system.

Efforts like

Anatomy of Detroit’s Decline

In a matter of decades, Detroit went from one of America’s most prosperous cities to one of its most distressed. Here is a look at how the collapse of this metropolis – battered by financial missteps, racial tensions and leadership lapses – culminated in insurmountable debt that led the city to file for bankruptcy.

Reliance on a Single Industry

A workman adjusted a Ford Mustang at the final assembly line in a Detroit-area factory on Nov. 6, 1967. Preston Stroup/Associated Press

The expansion of the auto industry nearly a century ago fueled a growth spurt that made Detroit the fourth largest city in the country. By 1950, the population peaked at almost 1.85 million as people moved to Detroit to work at the Big Three auto companies: Ford, General Motors and Chrysler. But it was at the height of this prosperity that the manufacturers began to restructure, and the risks of the city’s reliance on a single industry became apparent, according to Thomas J. Sugrue’s essay “Motor City: The Story of Detroit.

First, there was decentralization. Strikes, inspired by union negotiations and a refusal by blacks and whites to work side by side, were halting progress, according to “Detroit, Race and Uneven Development,” co-written by Joe T. Darden. Factories were built in the suburbs and in neighboring states so that if there was a protest in one factory, work could still continue elsewhere. But as the factories spread out, so too did the job opportunities.

When the industry then experimented with automation, replacing assembly-line jobs with machinery, tens of thousands of jobs were lost. The industry shrank even more during the energy crisis in the 1970s and the economic recession in the 1980s. And foreign competition caused profits to plummet.

As auto jobs moved elsewhere and the region aged, Detroit’s labor costs — retiree health care costs, especially — increased substantially.

Though other cities experienced their own booms and busts, Detroit suffered more because it didn’t diversify, said Kevin Boyle, a Detroit historian who has written extensively about his native city. Places such as Chicago and Pittsburgh relied on other areas – like banking or education – beyond the industries that started their success.

The auto industry “was like Silicon Valley in the 1980s,” Mr. Boyle said. It was doing so well, he said, that Detroit officials didn’t see a need to do anything differently.

 

RELATED

Racial Tensions

A National Guardsman in Detroit during the riots of 1967. Associated Press

Tensions between the races have been high since the 1940s, when Southern blacks began moving to Detroit in search of work at automobile factories, said Mr. Boyle, the historian.

As the migration of blacks who swept into Detroit became especially intense, middle-class whites began moving to the newly built suburbs. But violent 1967 riots turned this stream into a torrent.

“It’s really hard to overstate how deep the fear was, on both sides of the color line,” Mr. Boyle said.

And after the riots, Detroit failed to bounce back, Mr. Boyle said. Businesses followed their customers. Thousands of houses were abandoned as the city’s population plunged.

“In some cities like Chicago, Boston and maybe New York, people say to themselves, ‘I want to be in this neighborhood where I grew up, where my grandparents live or where my synagogue is’ — that really roots people in place,” he said. “Detroit didn’t work that way.”

During the 1950s, the city lost 363,000 white residents while it gained 182,000 black residents. In 1950, the population was 16 percent black, and by the time of the 1967 riot it had grown to a third. Today, about 82 percent of the city’s population is black.

The Rev. Charles Williams II, who leads the Detroit chapter of the National Action Network, said little had been done to ease tensions. Those strained relations have hindered the city’s efforts toward economic progress.

“Race has basically been used as a tool to pit people against each other,” he said. “There’s a sincere, in-depth hate. Folks in the city have been taught to not trust those in the suburbs. Folks in the suburbs don’t trust those in the city.”

 

RELATED

Shortcomings of Leadership

Mayor Coleman A. Young of Detroit at an event in 1980. Richard Sheinwald/Associated Press

The financial crisis facing Detroit was decades in the making, caused in part by a trail of missteps, suspected corruption and inaction. Here is a sampling of some city leaders who trimmed too little, too late and, rather than tackling problems head on, hoped that deep-rooted structural problems would turn out to be cyclical downturns.

Charles E. Bowles, backed by the Ku Klux Klan, was in office for seven months in 1930 before people demanded his removal. His ascension to the mayor’s office was followed by a spike in crime, and he was suspected to be linked to some of Detroit’s underworld figures, according to “Detroit: A Biography” by Scott Martelle. “The stories of gangland feuds and killings were diversions from the deeper agony that spread across Detroit in the 1930s,” Mr. Martelle wrote. “Unemployment was high and deep poverty endemic.”

Edward Jeffries, who served as mayor from 1940 to 1948, developed the Detroit Plan, which involved razing 100 blighted acres and preparing the land for redevelopment. The area sat vacant for several years, and the 7,000 black residents who were displaced moved to neighboring areas where whites, in turn, left. Rather than ending blight, the project simply redistributed it.

Albert Cobo was considered a candidate of the wealthy and of the white during his tenure from 1950 to 1957. He declined federal money for housing projects and facilitated the construction of freeways. Highways were being built across the country that encouraged suburbanization, but while the rest of the nation was expanding, Detroit’s population was shrinking as people used the newly built roadways to leave.

Coleman A. Young was seen as a divisive figure in the 20 years he served as mayor. He won his first mayoral election in 1973, largely on the promise to ease tension between the police and black residents. But while many blacks saw him as a hero who pledged to fight crime, some whites felt he wasn’t looking out for their interests. Mr. Young seemingly breezed to second, third and fourth terms without making the expected bridge-building racial appeals. Isabel Wilkerson, writing in The New York Times in 1989, said the mayor, running in a city in which 70 percent of the voters were black, seemed “to revel in the sort of polarization that other politicians dread.” Though Mr. Young was credited with revitalizing the waterfront, the rest of downtown was often compared to a war zone, with neighborhoods crumbling, businesses boarded up and poverty remaining high.

Kwame M. Kilpatrick, who led Detroit from 2001 to 2008, was nicknamed the “hip-hop mayor” when first elected at 31, in part for his larger-than-life persona, flashy suits and the diamond stud in his ear. He brought new attractions to the city’s riverfront and much-needed business investment downtown, but he also increased the city’s debt obligations to fill budget gaps. After a series of scandals he resigned in 2008 and pleaded guilty later that year to obstruction of justice charges, served four months in jail and was ordered to pay $1 million to the city. He was behind bars two years later for hiding assets from the court, and in October he was sentenced to 28 years in prison after he was found guilty of racketeering, fraud and extortion.

Dave Bing, a former professional basketball star, took office in 2009 pledging to solve Detroit’s fiscal problems, which by then were already overwhelming. During his term, there were numerous announcements of cuts to the city’s work force, efforts to fill annual budget deficits and urgent calls for sacrifices from labor groups. Then in March the state appointed Kevyn D. Orr, a veteran lawyer, as an emergency manager to oversee the city’s operations, rendering Mr. Bing virtually powerless. Mr. Bing announced in May that he would not run for re-election. And in November Mike Duggan, a former hospital executive who campaigned with the backing of Detroit’s business leaders, was elected mayor.

 

RELATED

Lack of an Efficient Transit System

Detroit’s once-glamorous Michigan Theater, which is now used as a parking garage. Sean Doerr/WNET.org

In the hometown of the auto industry, public policies encouraged a car culture, with more money being invested in building highways rather than a public transportation system.

Efforts like Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 helped fuel urban sprawl, and the city’s streetcar system was dismantled the same year. In the 1980s, with federal aid, the city built its People Mover, a monorail that looped around three miles in the downtown area. The project was criticized as not being cost effective, as it primarily serviced visitors to restaurants or the stadium rather than helping the city’s residents get around effectively. Though there is a bus system, it is thought to be unreliable, said Mr. Williams of the National Action Network, a Detroit native. A light-rail system, backed in part by corporate donors, is slated to begin operating in early 2016.

“It’s almost like two Detroits,” Mr. Williams said. “The light rail will go up to West Grand Boulevard, where all the development is taking place. The other side is where the poverty is.”

Without an efficient mode of transportation over the past few decades, blacks and whites didn’t travel side by side as they did in other cities, a missed opportunity to ease racial tensions, said Mr. Boyle, the historian.

“It makes a difference that you have to sit in a subway car or a bus with people who are of different races and different ethnicities, different ages different classes,” he said. “It creates a sense of connection, even if it’s just a superficial one.”

 

RELATED

Impact of Poverty

Shuttered homes and businesses lined a street in downtown Detroit in 2008. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Officials are now faced with trying to shrink the city, a complicated task because dilapidated homes and empty lots are speckled throughout neighborhoods rather than consolidated in convenient chunks.

About 36 percent of the city’s population is below the poverty level, and, by 2010, the residential vacancy rate was 27.8 percent. With fewer people paying taxes, the city has starved financially and has struggled to maintain social services. Swaths of the city are in total darkness because of nonfunctioning street lights. And the average police response time, including top priority calls, is 58 minutes, according to a report by the emergency manager.

The student enrollment at Detroit’s public schools has drastically declined to 52,981 in 2012 from 164,496 in 2002, according to Michelle A. Zdrodowski, a spokeswoman for the district. In response, several school buildings have been shuttered.

Poverty has been exacerbated by middle-class black families’ moving to the suburbs to pursue jobs or better schools, and to escape crime. Meanwhile, the city’s poor have stayed in Detroit. The city’s unemployment rate is about 19 percent, but the lack of a transportation system has prevented residents from commuting to jobs elsewhere. A plan to cut retiree pensions, which some estimate account for $3.5 billion of the city’s $18 billion in debt, could worsen the lives of some.

As the city works to reinvent itself, it has drawn a community of artists and young people with big dreams of a total makeover for Detroit. Mr. Williams said the challenge was to make sure longtime residents were included in the movement.

“The people who are living in the city of Detroit, who have been holding on,” he said, “they should be a part of the progress.”

 

RELATED

Anatomy of Detroit’s Decline
In a matter of decades, Detroit went from one of America’s most prosperous cities to one of its most distressed. Here is a look at how the collapse of this metropolis – battered by financial missteps, racial tensions and leadership lapses – culminated in insurmountable debt that led the city to file for bankruptcy.
Reliance on a Single Industry
Racial Tensions
Shortcomings of Leadership
Lack of an Efficient Transit System
Impact of Poverty
Share
Reliance on a Single Industry

A workman adjusted a Ford Mustang at the final assembly line in a Detroit-area factory on Nov. 6, 1967. Preston Stroup/Associated Press

The expansion of the auto industry nearly a century ago fueled a growth spurt that made Detroit the fourth largest city in the country. By 1950, the population peaked at almost 1.85 million as people moved to Detroit to work at the Big Three auto companies: Ford, General Motors and Chrysler. But it was at the height of this prosperity that the manufacturers began to restructure, and the risks of the city’s reliance on a single industry became apparent, according to Thomas J. Sugrue’s essay “Motor City: The Story of Detroit.”

First, there was decentralization. Strikes, inspired by union negotiations and a refusal by blacks and whites to work side by side, were halting progress, according to “Detroit, Race and Uneven Development,” co-written by Joe T. Darden. Factories were built in the suburbs and in neighboring states so that if there was a protest in one factory, work could still continue elsewhere. But as the factories spread out, so too did the job opportunities.

When the industry then experimented with automation, replacing assembly-line jobs with machinery, tens of thousands of jobs were lost. The industry shrank even more during the energy crisis in the 1970s and the economic recession in the 1980s. And foreign competition caused profits to plummet.

As auto jobs moved elsewhere and the region aged, Detroit’s labor costs — retiree health care costs, especially — increased substantially.

Though other cities experienced their own booms and busts, Detroit suffered more because it didn’t diversify, said Kevin Boyle, a Detroit historian who has written extensively about his native city. Places such as Chicago and Pittsburgh relied on other areas – like banking or education – beyond the industries that started their success.

The auto industry “was like Silicon Valley in the 1980s,” Mr. Boyle said. It was doing so well, he said, that Detroit officials didn’t see a need to do anything differently.

RELATED
Motor City: The Story of Detroit (The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History)
Detroit Census Confirms a Desertion Like No Other
Detroit Is Now a Charity Case for Carmakers
Racial Tensions

A National Guardsman in Detroit during the riots of 1967. Associated Press

Tensions between the races have been high since the 1940s, when Southern blacks began moving to Detroit in search of work at automobile factories, said Mr. Boyle, the historian.

As the migration of blacks who swept into Detroit became especially intense, middle-class whites began moving to the newly built suburbs. But violent 1967 riots turned this stream into a torrent.

“It’s really hard to overstate how deep the fear was, on both sides of the color line,” Mr. Boyle said.

And after the riots, Detroit failed to bounce back, Mr. Boyle said. Businesses followed their customers. Thousands of houses were abandoned as the city’s population plunged.

“In some cities like Chicago, Boston and maybe New York, people say to themselves, ‘I want to be in this neighborhood where I grew up, where my grandparents live or where my synagogue is’ — that really roots people in place,” he said. “Detroit didn’t work that way.”

During the 1950s, the city lost 363,000 white residents while it gained 182,000 black residents. In 1950, the population was 16 percent black, and by the time of the 1967 riot it had grown to a third. Today, about 82 percent of the city’s population is black.

The Rev. Charles Williams II, who leads the Detroit chapter of the National Action Network, said little had been done to ease tensions. Those strained relations have hindered the city’s efforts toward economic progress.

“Race has basically been used as a tool to pit people against each other,” he said. “There’s a sincere, in-depth hate. Folks in the city have been taught to not trust those in the suburbs. Folks in the suburbs don’t trust those in the city.”

RELATED
5 Days in 1967 Still Shake Detroit
Shortcomings of Leadership

Mayor Coleman A. Young of Detroit at an event in 1980. Richard Sheinwald/Associated Press

The financial crisis facing Detroit was decades in the making, caused in part by a trail of missteps, suspected corruption and inaction. Here is a sampling of some city leaders who trimmed too little, too late and, rather than tackling problems head on, hoped that deep-rooted structural problems would turn out to be cyclical downturns.

Charles E. Bowles, backed by the Ku Klux Klan, was in office for seven months in 1930 before people demanded his removal. His ascension to the mayor’s office was followed by a spike in crime, and he was suspected to be linked to some of Detroit’s underworld figures, according to “Detroit: A Biography” by Scott Martelle. “The stories of gangland feuds and killings were diversions from the deeper agony that spread across Detroit in the 1930s,” Mr. Martelle wrote. “Unemployment was high and deep poverty endemic.”

Edward Jeffries, who served as mayor from 1940 to 1948, developed the Detroit Plan, which involved razing 100 blighted acres and preparing the land for redevelopment. The area sat vacant for several years, and the 7,000 black residents who were displaced moved to neighboring areas where whites, in turn, left. Rather than ending blight, the project simply redistributed it.

Albert Cobo was considered a candidate of the wealthy and of the white during his tenure from 1950 to 1957. He declined federal money for housing projects and facilitated the construction of freeways. Highways were being built across the country that encouraged suburbanization, but while the rest of the nation was expanding, Detroit’s population was shrinking as people used the newly built roadways to leave.

Coleman A. Young was seen as a divisive figure in the 20 years he served as mayor. He won his first mayoral election in 1973, largely on the promise to ease tension between the police and black residents. But while many blacks saw him as a hero who pledged to fight crime, some whites felt he wasn’t looking out for their interests. Mr. Young seemingly breezed to second, third and fourth terms without making the expected bridge-building racial appeals. Isabel Wilkerson, writing in The New York Times in 1989, said the mayor, running in a city in which 70 percent of the voters were black, seemed “to revel in the sort of polarization that other politicians dread.” Though Mr. Young was credited with revitalizing the waterfront, the rest of downtown was often compared to a war zone, with neighborhoods crumbling, businesses boarded up and poverty remaining high.

Kwame M. Kilpatrick, who led Detroit from 2001 to 2008, was nicknamed the “hip-hop mayor” when first elected at 31, in part for his larger-than-life persona, flashy suits and the diamond stud in his ear. He brought new attractions to the city’s riverfront and much-needed business investment downtown, but he also increased the city’s debt obligations to fill budget gaps. After a series of scandals he resigned in 2008 and pleaded guilty later that year to obstruction of justice charges, served four months in jail and was ordered to pay $1 million to the city. He was behind bars two years later for hiding assets from the court, and in October he was sentenced to 28 years in prison after he was found guilty of racketeering, fraud and extortion.

Dave Bing, a former professional basketball star, took office in 2009 pledging to solve Detroit’s fiscal problems, which by then were already overwhelming. During his term, there were numerous announcements of cuts to the city’s work force, efforts to fill annual budget deficits and urgent calls for sacrifices from labor groups. Then in March the state appointed Kevyn D. Orr, a veteran lawyer, as an emergency manager to oversee the city’s operations, rendering Mr. Bing virtually powerless. Mr. Bing announced in May that he would not run for re-election. And in November Mike Duggan, a former hospital executive who campaigned with the backing of Detroit’s business leaders, was elected mayor.

RELATED
Obituary for Charles E. Bowles
Obituary for Edward J. Jeffries
Obituary for Coleman A. Young
Former Mayor of Detroit Guilty in Corruption Case
Detroit Mayor’s Tough Love Poses Risks in Election
For Detroit’s New Mayor, Power, With Conditions
Lack of an Efficient Transit System

Detroit’s once-glamorous Michigan Theater, which is now used as a parking garage. Sean Doerr/WNET.org

In the hometown of the auto industry, public policies encouraged a car culture, with more money being invested in building highways rather than a public transportation system.

Efforts like Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 helped fuel urban sprawl, and the city’s streetcar system was dismantled the same year. In the 1980s, with federal aid, the city built its People Mover, a monorail that looped around three miles in the downtown area. The project was criticized as not being cost effective, as it primarily serviced visitors to restaurants or the stadium rather than helping the city’s residents get around effectively. Though there is a bus system, it is thought to be unreliable, said Mr. Williams of the National Action Network, a Detroit native. A light-rail system, backed in part by corporate donors, is slated to begin operating in early 2016.

“It’s almost like two Detroits,” Mr. Williams said. “The light rail will go up to West Grand Boulevard, where all the development is taking place. The other side is where the poverty is.”

Without an efficient mode of transportation over the past few decades, blacks and whites didn’t travel side by side as they did in other cities, a missed opportunity to ease racial tensions, said Mr. Boyle, the historian.

“It makes a difference that you have to sit in a subway car or a bus with people who are of different races and different ethnicities, different ages different classes,” he said. “It creates a sense of connection, even if it’s just a superficial one.”

RELATED
Razing the City to Save the City
Shrinking Detroit Back to Greatness
The Odd Challenge for Detroit Planners
Detroit Insists the Future Will Be Cars, Cars, Cars
Impact of Poverty

Shuttered homes and businesses lined a street in downtown Detroit in 2008. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Officials are now faced with trying to shrink the city, a complicated task because dilapidated homes and empty lots are speckled throughout neighborhoods rather than consolidated in convenient chunks.

About 36 percent of the city’s population is below the poverty level, and, by 2010, the residential vacancy rate was 27.8 percent. With fewer people paying taxes, the city has starved financially and has struggled to maintain social services. Swaths of the city are in total darkness because of nonfunctioning street lights. And the average police response time, including top priority calls, is 58 minutes, according to a report by the emergency manager.

The student enrollment at Detroit’s public schools has drastically declined to 52,981 in 2012 from 164,496 in 2002, according to Michelle A. Zdrodowski, a spokeswoman for the district. In response, several school buildings have been shuttered.

Poverty has been exacerbated by middle-class black families’ moving to the suburbs to pursue jobs or better schools, and to escape crime. Meanwhile, the city’s poor have stayed in Detroit. The city’s unemployment rate is about 19 percent, but the lack of a transportation system has prevented residents from commuting to jobs elsewhere. A plan to cut retiree pensions, which some estimate account for $3.5 billion of the city’s $18 billion in debt, could worsen the lives of some.

As the city works to reinvent itself, it has drawn a community of artists and young people with big dreams of a total makeover for Detroit. Mr. Williams said the challenge was to make sure longtime residents were included in the movement.

“The people who are living in the city of Detroit, who have been holding on,” he said, “they should be a part of the progress.”

RELATED
Can Detroit Find the Road Forward?
In Embattled Detroit, No Talk of Sharing Pain
In Detroit’s Despair, Mayor Sees Hope
Big Dreams, but Little Consensus, for a New Detroit

helped fuel urban sprawl, and the city’s streetcar system was dismantled the same year. In the 1980s, with federal aid, the city built its People Mover, a monorail that looped around three miles in the downtown area. The project was criticized as not being cost effective, as it primarily serviced visitors to restaurants or the stadium rather than helping the city’s residents get around effectively. Though there is a bus system, it is thought to be unreliable, said Mr. Williams of the National Action Network, a Detroit native. A light-rail system, backed in part by corporate donors, is slated to begin operating in early 2016.

“It’s almost like two Detroits,” Mr. Williams said. “The light rail will go up to West Grand Boulevard, where all the development is taking place. The other side is where the poverty is.”

Without an efficient mode of transportation over the past few decades, blacks and whites didn’t travel side by side as they did in other cities, a missed opportunity to ease racial tensions, said Mr. Boyle, the historian.

“It makes a difference that you have to sit in a subway car or a bus with people who are of different races and different ethnicities, different ages different classes,” he said. “It creates a sense of connection, even if it’s just a superficial one.”

 

RELATED

Impact of Poverty

Shuttered homes and businesses lined a street in downtown Detroit in 2008. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Officials are now faced with trying to shrink the city, a complicated task because dilapidated homes and empty lots are speckled throughout neighborhoods rather than consolidated in convenient chunks.

About 36 percent of the city’s population is below the poverty level, and, by 2010, the residential vacancy rate was 27.8 percent. With fewer people paying taxes, the city has starved financially and has struggled to maintain social services. Swaths of the city are in total darkness because of nonfunctioning street lights. And the average police response time, including top priority calls, is 58 minutes, according to a report by the emergency manager.

The student enrollment at Detroit’s public schools has drastically declined to 52,981 in 2012 from 164,496 in 2002, according to Michelle A. Zdrodowski, a spokeswoman for the district. In response, several school buildings have been shuttered.

Poverty has been exacerbated by middle-class black families’ moving to the suburbs to pursue jobs or better schools, and to escape crime. Meanwhile, the city’s poor have stayed in Detroit. The city’s unemployment rate is about 19 percent, but the lack of a transportation system has prevented residents from commuting to jobs elsewhere. A plan to cut retiree pensions, which some estimate account for $3.5 billion of the city’s $18 billion in debt, could worsen the lives of some.

As the city works to reinvent itself, it has drawn a community of artists and young people with big dreams of a total makeover for Detroit. Mr. Williams said the challenge was to make sure longtime residents were included in the movement.

“The people who are living in the city of Detroit, who have been holding on,” he said, “they should be a part of the progress.”

 

RELATED

homelessness around the world

Standard
homelessness around the world

25 Cities With Extremely High Homeless Populations

POSTED BY ON APRIL 29, 2014

According to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, there is an estimated 100 million homeless people worldwide. This is a startling statistic when you consider how affluent some parts of the world are. Here is but a short glimpse at this social travesty within these 25 cities with extremely high homeless populations.

25

Lisbon, Portugal

http://www.photoree.com

Most of the homeless people in Portugal are concentrated in the cities of Lisbon and Porto. Reports say that around 300 homeless people sleep on the streets of Lisbon every night. Today, members of the Comunidade Vida e Paz are persuading the homeless population of Lisbon to take part in rehabilitation programs in order to improve the quality of their lives.

24

Denver, Colorado

http://www.denverpost.com

According to the 2012 Point in Time report from Metro Denver Homeless Initiative, Denver saw an increase in it’s homeless population from 411 to 964 between the years of 2011 and 2012.

23

Indianapolis, Indiana

http://www.nuvo.net

There are as many as 2,200 homeless people every night in the city of Indianapolis, which is equivalent to around 15,000 over the course of a year. Thought this city is known for its faith-based shelters, there’s just not enough shelters to provide a place for the entire homeless population.

22

Dublin, Ireland

http://www.theguardian.com

In a recent study shows that about seven people per day become homeless in Dublin. In 2013, there were about 2,366 people that were reported to be sleeping on the streets of Dublin every night. The government’s failure to increase the stock of social housing is said to be the root cause of this social problem.

21

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

http://www.zimbio.com

Rio De Janeiro is known for having a high homelessness rate with over 2,500 homeless people as of last year.

20

Baltimore, Maryland

commons.wikimedia.org

According to a 2011 study, there are about 4,088 homeless individuals in Baltimore, Maryland, many of which are families with children. Today, the city government is making strides towards putting an end to this social problem by creating projects aimed at providing affordable housing and health care.

19

Tokyo, Japan

phototravels.net

A 2013 study shows an estimated homeless population of 5,000 living in Tokyo. This number was a significant increase from the 3,800 homeless individuals recorded in 2008.

18

Chicago, Illinois

observationsworkshop.blogspot.com

As of July 2013, analysis by Chicago Coalition for the Homeless found that 116,042 Chicagoans were homeless in the course of the 2012-13 school year. This is a 10% increase from last year’s homeless population.

17

Washington, D.C.

souciant.com

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the number of homeless people living in Washington in 2013 was around 6,865. Last year, the city government began to provide shelter to its homeless population whenever temperature levels droped below freezing point. Those who do not want to stay in temporary shelters are provided with a budget to stay in hotels.

16

Rome, Italy

http://www.cookiesound.com

Out of the 17,000 homeless people in Italy, 7,000 are from Rome.

15

Tampa, Florida

http://www.emirates247.com

Lack of affordable housing and homeless shelters has contributed to the alarming number of 7,419 homeless people who call the streets of Tampa their home each night.

14

San Diego, California

kpbs.org

The second largest city in the State of California with a population of 1,345,895, San Diego is home to 8,879 homeless people.

13

Athens, Greece

http://www.theguardian.com

Homelessness statistics show that out of the 20,000 homeless people in Greece, 9,000 are from Athens. The number of homeless people in Athens has continued to grow since the economic crisis of 2009.

12

Seattle, Washington

seattleindustry.org

According to the 2013 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress, Seattle is home to a total homeless population of 9,106.

11

San Francisco, U.S.A.

familysurvivalprotocol.com

Around 7,000 to 10,000 people in San Francisco, U.S.A. are homeless, 3,000 to 5,000 of which refuse to live in temporary shelters provided by the government.

What was the word hobo derived from?

Standard
What was the word hobo derived from?

mike1999

JOHN PRINE “A HOBO SONG”

 

ENGLISH HOBOS
imagesB9R0N469imagesKK8TQC8EimagesNFD7MT1G

 

 

images (296)

images (295)

images (294)

 

What was the word hobo derived from?

Answer:
For two centuries, in both England and America, homeless wanderers from place to place had been known as tramps. Then an unknown American came up with a new word for them: hobo. Researcher Barry Popik has found it used in a http://www.answers.com/topic/breezy letter from New York City in the New Orleans Picayune of August 19, 1848: “Well, here I am once more in Gotham, after three years’ absence–three years which have passed as http://www.answers.com/topic/agreeably-2 as time usually passes with people in this digging world. During that period I have floated about and circulated round to some considerable extent…. a year’s bronzing and ‘ho-boying’ about among the mountains of that charming country called Mexico, has given me a slight dash of the Spanish.”
Where this odd word came from nobody knows for sure, but the “slight dash of the Spanish” gives a hint. It could be borrowed from the Spanish hobo, or jobo, a word which appeared in print as far back as 1516. This word, in turn, comes from the Taino Indian language spoken in the West Indies and refers to a tree that grows there. How could a tree become a http://www.answers.com/topic/tramp? Well, over the centuries Spanish jobo acquired other more relevant meanings. In Mexico jobo can refer to a Guatemalan; in Cuba, correr jobos means “to play http://www.answers.com/topic/truant.” So to avoid the http://www.answers.com/topic/taint of the term tramp, an American wanderer might be happy to adopt the exotic hobo.

In American English, it has continued to imply relatively higher status than vagrant or tramp. The exact definition has depended on who was using the word, but hobo has generally meant “a wanderer who is willing to work.”
images3KJXFG26

THE HOBO CODE

An ethical code was created by Tourist Union #63 during its 1889 National Hobo Convention in St. Louis Missouri. This code was voted upon as a concrete set of laws to govern the Nation-wide Hobo Body; it reads this way:

1.
Decide your own life, don’t let another person run or rule you.

2.
When in town, always respect the local law and officials, and try to be a gentleman at all times.

3.
Don’t take advantage of someone who is in a vulnerable situation, locals or other hobos.

4.
Always try to find work, even if temporary, and always seek out jobs nobody wants. By doing so you not only help a business along, but ensure employment should you return to that town again.

5.
When no employment is available, make your own work by using your added talents at crafts.

6.
Do not allow yourself to become a stupid drunk and set a bad example for locals’ treatment of other hobos.

7.
When jungling in town, respect handouts, do not wear them out, another hobo will be coming along who will need them as bad, if not worse than you.

8.
Always respect nature, do not leave garbage where you are jungling.

9.
If in a community jungle, always pitch in and help.

10.
Try to stay clean, and boil up wherever possible.

11.
When traveling, ride your train respectfully, take no personal chances, cause no problems with the operating crew or host railroad, act like an extra crew member.

12.
Do not cause problems in a train yard, another hobo will be coming along who will need passage through that yard.

13.
Do not allow other hobos to molest children, expose all molesters to authorities, they are the worst garbage to infest any society.

14.
Help all runaway children, and try to induce them to return home.

15.
Help your fellow hobos whenever and wherever needed, you may need their help someday.

16.
If present at a hobo court and you have testimony, give it. Whether for or against the accused, your voice counts!

imagesZTO7TFD9
HOBO TERMS

Accommodation car the caboose of a train
Angellina a young inexperienced child
Bad Road a train line rendered useless by some hobo’s bad action or crime
Banjo (1) a small portable frying pan; (2) a short, “D” handled shovel
Barnacle a person who sticks to one job a year or more
Beachcomber a hobo who hangs around docks or seaports
Big House prison
Bindle stick a collection of belongings wrapped in cloth and tied around a stick
Bindlestiff a hobo who carries a bindle
Blowed-in-the-glass a genuine, trustworthy individual
‘Bo the common way one hobo referred to another: “I met that ‘Bo on the way to Bangor last spring.”
Boil Up specifically, to boil one’s clothes to kill lice and their eggs; generally, to get oneself as clean as possible
Bone polisher a mean dog
Bone orchard a graveyard
Bull a railroad officer
Bullets beans
Buck a Catholic priest good for a dollar
Burger today’s lunch
C, H, and D indicates an individual is Cold, Hungry, and Dry (thirsty)
California blankets newspapers, intended to be used for bedding on a park bench
Calling in using another’s campfire to warm up or cook
Cannonball a fast train
Carrying the banner keeping in constant motion so as to avoid being picked up for loitering or to keep from freezing
Catch the Westbound to die
Chuck a dummy pretend to faint
Cover with the moon sleep out in the open
Colt Freese one who rummages for discarded food at restaurants before his meal
Cow crate a railroad stock car
Crumbs lice
Docandoberry anything that grows on the side of a river that’s edible
Doggin’ it traveling by bus, especially on the Greyhound bus line
Easy mark a hobo sign or mark that identifies a person or place where one can get food and a place to stay overnight
Elevated under the influence of drugs or alcohol
Flip to board a moving train
Flop a place to sleep, by extension, “Flophouse”, a cheap hotel
Glad rags one’s best clothes
Graybacks lice
Grease the track to be run over by a train
Gump a chicken[9]
Honey dipping working with a shovel in the sewer
Hot (1) a fugitive hobo; (2) a decent meal: “I could use three hots and a flop”
Hot Shot a train with priority freight, stops rarely, goes faster; synonym for “Cannonball”
Jungle an area off a railroad where hobos camp and congregate
Jungle buzzard a hobo or tramp who preys on his own
Knowledge bus a school bus used for shelter
Maeve a young hobo usually a girl
Main drag the busiest road in a town
Moniker / Monica a nickname
Mulligan a type of community stew, created by several hobos combining whatever food they have or can collect
Nickel note a five-dollar bill
On the fly jumping a moving train
Padding the hoof to travel by foot
Possum belly to ride on the roof of a passenger car (one must lie flat, on his/her stomach, to avoid being blown off)
Pullman a railroad sleeper car; most were made by George Pullman company
Punk any young kid
Reefer a compression of “refrigerator car”
Road kid a young hobo who apprentices himself to an older hobo in order to learn the ways of the road
Road stake the small amount of money a hobo may have in case of an emergency
Rum dum a drunkard
Sky pilot a preacher or minister
Soup bowl a place to get soup, bread and drinks
Snipes cigarette butts “sniped” (e.g., in ashtrays)
Spare biscuits looking for food in garbage cans (also see “Colt Freese”, above)
Stemming panhandling or begging along the streets
Tokay blanket drinking alcohol to stay warm
Yegg a traveling professional thief, or burglar

Many hobo terms have become part of common language, such as “Big House”, “glad rags”, “main drag”, and others.

PREVIOUS PUZZLER: The Confederate Soldiers Who Left Home
When the Civil War ended, soldiers returned home to find the lives they knew were gone. Many left again in the hopes of rebuilding their lives, and they were carrying something. What was the name for these men?

RAY: Here’s the answer. The Confederate soldiers returning home were called a name that arose out of a tool they were carrying. A hoe.

TOM: Farm hoes!

RAY: Exactly. The soldiers were walking the back roads, riding and jumping on trains, and sleeping out in the countryside hoping to find some kind of work.

They were called hoe boys, which came to be called hobos.

SOME INTERESTING LITERATURE ON HOBOS
English Literature Dissertation: A Study into Hobo Literature
by Nial Anderson, University of Glamorgan, UK

Index

2 – Introduction: Some Background on the Hobo
7 – A Working Life?
10 – Money
12 – To hobo or not to hobo: Choice or Curse?
15 – Rail Life
18 – Hobo: Getting into Character
22 – Writers and Tall Tales
24 – End of the Road: Conclusion
29 – References

“The imaginative young vagabond quickly loses the social instincts that make life bearable for other men. Always he hears voices calling in the night from far-away places where blue waters lap strange shores. He hears birds singing and crickets chirping a luring roundelay. He sees the moon, yellow ghost of a dead planet, haunting the earth.”

Jim Tully – Beggars of Life


“Oh ridin’ on the rattlers, a-ridin’ all the day,
And nuthin’ in yer belly all along the way;
No ‘baccy in yer pocket, and no jack for to spend,
And old John Law a-waitin’ at the next division end.”

Anonymous

 

 

Austin’s Utopian Homeless Village Is Becoming A Reality

Standard
Austin’s Utopian Homeless Village Is Becoming A Reality

Austin’s Utopian Homeless Village Is Becoming A Reality

Austin’s 27-acre Community First Village will eventually house 250 formerly homeless and disabled people. Can they build a real “hobo’s paradise”? posted on May 7, 2014 at 3:45pm EDT

original-15111-1399314348-4

original-18395-1399314369-15

grid-cell-17457-1399478057-11

grid-cell-20186-1399496076-12

grid-cell-17457-1399478059-14

Austin’s Utopian Homeless Village Is Becoming A Reality

Austin’s 27-acre Community First Village will eventually house 250 formerly homeless and disabled people. Can they build a real “hobo’s paradise”?
posted on May 7, 2014 at 3:45pm EDT

Summer Anne Burton

Mobile Loaves & Fishes, a social justice ministry, has been planning their new homeless community in on 27 acres in East Austin.

The village is still being built right now, but even just the development feels like a sunny mini paradise, hiding right off the road on the east side of Austin, Texas.

The new community will feature homes — RVs, tiny cabins, and teepees — for 250 formerly homeless for rent as low as $90.

Would You Recognize a Loved One Dressed Like the Homeless?

Standard
Would You Recognize a Loved One Dressed Like the Homeless?

Would You Recognize a Loved One Dressed Like the Homeless? These People Didn’t Hidden-camera stunt aims to ‘make them visible’ By David Griner

April 23, 2014, 4:45 PM EDT

homeless-relatives-hed-2014

HAVE THE HOMELES BECOME INVISIBLE?

homeless-people

Most city dwellers tend to avoid eye contact with the homeless, a fact that made one advocacy group wonder: Would you recognize your own relatives if they were living on the street?

New York City Rescue Mission partnered with agency Silver + Partner for a hidden-camera stunt that filmed people as they walked past loved ones dressed to look homeless. Later, the passersby were shown video footage of themselves walking past their relatives without a second glance.

As you’d probably expect, no one recognized their family members. One woman even walked right past her mom, uncle and aunt.

The stunt doesn’t lead to any emotional breakdowns or similar histrionics, which is somewhat refreshing at a time when “gotcha” videos focus so hard on over-the-top reactions and immediate life-changing self-reflection. But the unwitting participants clearly feel ashamed of their oversight.

Director Jun Diaz from production house Smuggler tells Fast Company that one person who was filmed asked not to be included in the final video “because they couldn’t handle the fact that they walked by their family.”

On a related website, MakeThemVisible.com, the rescue mission further humanizes the needy by sharing photographs of real homeless New Yorkers, smiling while sharing their personal passions and hobbies.

THIS SONG GOT DAVE AND I THROUGH ROUGH TIMES WHEN WE WERE POOR

Standard

Image

THIS SONG GOT DAVE AND I THROUGH ROUGH TIMES WHEN WE WERE POOR-WHICH WAS MOST OF THE TIME!

p311536t

THE GRATEFUL DEAD “I WILL GET BY”

http://youtu.be/nCYbRmSlW-M

From Pentagon To Life In A Van

Standard

Chevrolet-Van-G10

From Pentagon To Life In A Van

January 7, 2014
Share It | Print This

Source: Philidelphia Inquirer

After a 30-year military career in which he earned three graduate degrees, rose to the rank of colonel, and served as an aide to Pentagon brass, Robert Freniere can guess what people might say when they learn he’s unemployed and lives out of his van:

Why doesn’t this guy get a job as a janitor?

Freniere answers his own question: “Well, I’ve tried that.”

Freniere, 59, says that his plea for help, to a janitor he once praised when the man was mopping the floors of his Washington office, went unfulfilled. So have dozens of job applications, he says, the ones he has filled out six hours a day, day after day, on public library computers.

So Freniere, a man who braved multiple combat zones and was hailed as “a leading light” by an admiral, is now fighting a new battle: homelessness.