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Turn Out The Lights U.S. Cities Are Becoming Cesspools Of Filth, Decay And Wret

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January 11, 2018, 06:31:04 am teppezuhodd says: That is the best technology we have now
October 17, 2017, 01:25:20 am Christian40 says: It is good to type Mark is here again!  Smiley
October 16, 2017, 03:28:18 am Christian40 says: anyone else thinking that time is accelerating now? it seems im doing days in shorter time now is time being affected in some way?
September 24, 2017, 10:45:16 pm Psalm 51:17 says: The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league rulebook. It states: “The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem. “During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.”
September 20, 2017, 04:32:32 am Christian40 says: "The most popular Hepatitis B vaccine is nothing short of a witch’s brew including aluminum, formaldehyde, yeast, amino acids, and soy. Aluminum is a known neurotoxin that destroys cellular metabolism and function. Hundreds of studies link to the ravaging effects of aluminum. The other proteins and formaldehyde serve to activate the immune system and open up the blood-brain barrier. This is NOT a good thing."
http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-08-11-new-fda-approved-hepatitis-b-vaccine-found-to-increase-heart-attack-risk-by-700.html
September 19, 2017, 03:59:21 am Christian40 says: bbc international did a video about there street preaching they are good witnesses
September 14, 2017, 08:06:04 am Psalm 51:17 says: bro Mark Hunter on YT has some good, edifying stuff too.
September 14, 2017, 04:31:26 am Christian40 says: i have thought that i'm reaping from past sins then my life has been impacted in ways from having non believers in my ancestry.
September 11, 2017, 06:59:33 am Psalm 51:17 says: The law of reaping and sowing. It's amazing how God's mercy and longsuffering has hovered over America so long. (ie, the infrastructure is very bad here b/c for many years, they were grossly underspent on. 1st Tim 6:10, the god of materialism has its roots firmly in the West) And remember once upon a time ago when shacking up b/w straight couples drew shock awe?

Exodus 20:5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
September 11, 2017, 03:40:40 am Christian40 says: those in america should better repent or things will only get worse
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Author Topic: Turn Out The Lights U.S. Cities Are Becoming Cesspools Of Filth, Decay And Wret  (Read 6636 times)
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« Reply #30 on: December 07, 2012, 10:07:30 am »

State laying groundwork for managed bankruptcy for Detroit

Even as the state Treasury prepares to begin another financial review of Detroit's books, a plan is being solidified in the governor's office that would guide Michigan's largest city through what is being called a managed bankruptcy.

The working concept, still evolving, assumes that the state's financial review would find severe financial distress in Detroit, that Mayor Dave Bing and City Council would be unable to push through overdue restructuring, and that the process would culminate in appointment of an emergency financial manager under Public Act 72.

The case would be filed under Chapter 9 of the federal bankruptcy code, according to two ranking sources familiar with the situation, following efforts to reach prenegotiated settlements with as many key creditors — unions, vendors and pension funds among them — as possible before any filing.



From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20121207/OPINION03/212070365#ixzz2ENnmmByv
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« Reply #31 on: December 07, 2012, 11:49:29 am »

But somehow Detroit has money to build a new multi-million dollar sports stadium? Roll Eyes

http://sports.yahoo.com/news/mich-senate-oks-bill-help-021119124--nhl.html

Mich. Senate OKs bill to help build Red Wings home
By JOHN FLESHER (Associated Press) | The Associated Press – Wed, Dec 5, 2012 9:15 PM EST

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- The Michigan Senate approved legislation Wednesday to help finance a downtown Detroit project that would include a new home for the NHL's Detroit Red Wings.
 
Team owner Mike Ilitch this week announced plans for a $650 million multiuse development, which would include an events center where Red Wings games could be held. He has said for years he'd like a new arena for the team, which now plays at the aging Joe Louis Arena.
 
The bill approved by the Senate would allow use of tax dollars collected by the city's Downtown Development Authority for the project. DDAs capture shares of local tax revenue to support development activities such as marketing and buying property.

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« Reply #32 on: December 07, 2012, 04:05:34 pm »

One big scam after another by city officials, just because they want a pro sports team, they claim will bring in income for the city and increase tourism, and the team owners basically hold hostage the city for public funds to finance their junk product that only a select few of the population even bothers to watch or go to a game, yet they get the whole city to pay for it whether they want to or not.

And officials wonder why they have "budget shortfalls"!
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« Reply #33 on: December 15, 2012, 06:37:14 pm »

http://news.yahoo.com/detroit-serious-financial-problem-michigan-treasurer-180959042--finance.html

.
Detroit has "serious financial problem": Michigan treasurer
By Ann Saphir | Reuters – 2 hrs 32 mins ago.

CHICAGO (Reuters) - A check of Detroit's finances has found a "serious financial problem" with the cash-strapped city, a step that could lead to the biggest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.
 
Michigan State Treasurer Andy Dillon notified Governor Rick Snyder of the report's findings late Friday, just four days after the review began, according to a statement from the state Treasury Department.
 
"A preliminary review of the City of Detroit's finances has found that a serious financial problem exists in the city," the statement said.
 
The review paves the way for the state to take a deeper look into the city's finances, which in turn could lead to the declaration of a fiscal emergency that would trigger the appointment of an emergency financial manager.
 
That official would have the power to put the city of 700,000 into Chapter 9 bankruptcy if other rescue plans are not feasible or effective.
 
Detroit, home of General Motors Co., has been hit by a steep population decline, years of severe budget deficits and escalating employee costs, all of which led state officials to begin an intervention process last year.
 
The preliminary review by the state treasurer found the city continues to have "significant cash flow problems," but that reporting problems have meant that projections swing wildly from month to month.
 
"A cash flow estimate in August, 2012 projected a cash deficit of $62 million by June 30, 2013, but estimates for October and November projected deficits of $84 million and $122 million respectively," the report said.
 
Should a further review of the city's finances result in the appointment of an emergency financial manager, it could mean a potential bankruptcy, "which could ultimately result in a delay or reduction of payments to city creditors," Moody's analyst Jeffrey Yorg wrote in a report.
 
STATE MONEY RELEASED
 
This week Detroit won a $10 million payment from Michigan after the City Council dropped its opposition to a key measure that had held up the release of the money.
 
By a 5-4 vote, the council approved the appointment of law firm Miller Canfield to work on issues related to a consent agreement that this year gave the state some oversight of Detroit's finances.
 
Last month council members had rejected the appointment, citing potential conflicts.
 
Council President Charles Pugh told reporters after the meeting that he "tried to hold his nose" to vote for the contract so that the city could avoid a state-appointed emergency financial manager
 
State officials, frustrated by the slow pace of reforms in Detroit, moved ahead with the preliminary review of the city's finances anyway.
 
"There is nothing new here," Mayor Dave Bing said, responding to Friday's finding, according to the Detroit Free Press. "We continue to be focused on our financial restructuring plan."
 
The city's oversight board, which was created under the consent agreement that allowed Detroit to avoid a state-appointed emergency manager, voted unanimously on Monday to support Michigan Treasurer Dillon's plan to launch the Detroit review.
 
Legislation that could be passed by the Michigan Legislature this month could also give Detroit a path to a Chapter 9 bankruptcy filing.
 
The bill would give fiscally struggling local governments like Detroit options for fixing their problems, including bankruptcy, emergency managers and consent agreements.
 
(Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Xavier Briand)
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« Reply #34 on: December 17, 2012, 04:02:30 am »

Society Is Crumbling Right In Front Of Our Eyes And Banning Guns Won't Help

What in the world is happening to America?  I have written many articles about how society is crumbling right in front of our eyes, but now it is getting to the point where people are going to be afraid to go to school or go shopping at the mall.  Just consider what has happened over the past week.  Adam Lanza savagely murdered 20 children and 6 adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.  42-year-old Marcus Gurrola threatened to shoot innocent shoppers and fired off more than 50 rounds in the parking lot of Fashion Island Mall in Newport Beach, California.  After police apprehended him, he told them that he "was unhappy with life".  Earlier in the week, a crazy man wearing a hockey mask and armed with a semi-automatic rifle opened fire on the second floor of a mall in Happy Valley, Oregon.  He killed two people and injured a third.  On Saturday morning, a lone gunman walked into a hospital in Alabama and opened fire.  He killed one police officer and two hospital employees before being gunned down by another police officer.  So have we now reached the point where every school, every mall and every hospital is going to need armed security?  How will society function efficiently if everyone is constantly worried about mass murderers?

In response to the horrible tragedy in Connecticut, many in the mainstream media are suggesting that much stricter gun laws are the obvious solution.

After all, if we get rid of all the guns these crazy people won't be able to commit these kinds of crimes, right?

Unfortunately, that is not how it works.  The criminals don't obey gun control laws.  Banning guns will just take them out of the hands of law-abiding American citizens that just want to protect their own families.

Adam Lanza didn't let the strict gun control laws up in Connecticut stop him from what he wanted to do.  Connecticut already has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, and Adam Lanza broke at least three of them.

However, if there had been some armed security officers or some armed teachers at that school, they may have had a chance to protect those dear little children from being brutally gunned down.

If gun control was really the solution to our problems, then cities that have implemented strict gun control laws should be some of the safest in the entire country.

But sadly, just the opposite is true.

For example, Chicago has very strict gun laws.  But 10 people were shot in the city of Chicago on Friday alone.  Chicago is now considered to be "the deadliest global city", and the murder rate in Chicago is about 25 percent higher than it was last year.

So has gun control turned Chicago into a utopia?

Of course not.

And it won't solve our problems on a national level either.

You can find more statistics about the futility of gun control right here.

Well, how would things be if we did just the opposite and everyone had a gun?

Would gun crime go through the roof?

That is what liberals were warning of when the city of Kennesaw, Georgia passed a law requiring every home to have a gun.  But instead of disaster, the results turned out to be very impressive...

    In March 1982, 25 years ago, the small town of Kennesaw – responding to a handgun ban in Morton Grove, Ill. – unanimously passed an ordinance requiring each head of household to own and maintain a gun. Since then, despite dire predictions of “Wild West” showdowns and increased violence and accidents, not a single resident has been involved in a fatal shooting – as a victim, attacker or defender.

    The crime rate initially plummeted for several years after the passage of the ordinance, with the 2005 per capita crime rate actually significantly lower than it was in 1981, the year before passage of the law.

    Prior to enactment of the law, Kennesaw had a population of just 5,242 but a crime rate significantly higher (4,332 per 100,000) than the national average (3,899 per 100,000). The latest statistics available – for the year 2005 – show the rate at 2,027 per 100,000. Meanwhile, the population has skyrocketed to 28,189.

When criminals know that everyone has guns, they are much less likely to try something.  And often armed citizens are able to prevent potential mass murderers from doing more damage.  You can find several examples of this right here.

But of course most of our politicians are not interested in common sense.  Instead, they are obsessed with the idea that gun control will make our country "safe" again.

Senator Diane Feinstein says that she is ready to introduce a strict gun control bill in January that will "ban the sale, the transfer, the importation and the possession" of many types of firearms.

Will such a law keep the criminals from getting guns?

No way.  Just look at what is happening with the cartels down in Mexico.  The criminals are always able to get guns.

If our "leaders" were really interested in stopping these mass murders, they would take a look at the role that mind-altering pharmaceutical drugs play in these incidents.  If you look at the mass murders that have occurred over the past several decades, in the vast majority of them the murderer had been using mind-altering pharmaceutical drugs...

    The Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) has raised concerns about severe acts of violence as side effects of anti-psychotic and antidepressant drugs not only on individuals but on society as well.

    Just a month ago PRWeb described drug induced violence as "medicine's best kept secret."

    And the Citizens Commission on Human Rights International (CCHRI) is calling for a federal investigation on its web page which links no less than 14 mass killings to the use of psychiatric drugs such as Prozac and Paxil.

And guess what?

According to the Washington Post, one neighbor says that Adam Lanza was "on medication".

But will our politicians ever consider a law against such drugs?

Of course not.  The big corporations that produce those drugs give mountains of money to the campaign funds of our politicians.

So the focus of the debate will remain on guns.

And a lot of liberals would have us believe that our society could be transformed into some type of "utopia" if we could just get rid of all the guns.

Unfortunately, that is simply not true.  Our society is in an advanced state of moral decay, and this moral decay is manifesting in our society in thousands of different ways.  The corruption runs from the highest levels of society all the way down to the lowest.

For those that believe that gun control would somehow "fix America", I have some questions for you...

Down in Texas, one set of parents kept their 10-year-old son locked in a bedroom and only fed him bread and water for months.  Eventually he died of starvation and they dumped his body in a creek.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

A pastor in north Texas was recently assaulted by an enraged man who beat him to death with an electric guitar.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

Police up in New Jersey say that a man kept his girlfriend padlocked in a bedroom for most of the last 10 years.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

A 31-year-old man up in Canada was found guilty of raping an 8-year-old girl, breaking 16 of her bones and smashing her in the face with a hammer.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

According to the FBI, a New York City police officer is being accused of “planning the kidnap, ****, torture and cannibilization of a number of women”.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

A Secret Service officer that had been assigned to protect Joe Biden’s residence has been charged with sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

Over in Texas, a very sick 29-year-old man stabbed his girlfriend to death and then burned his one-year-old baby alive because she had gone to court and filed for child support.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

Over in Utah, a 21-year-old man is accused of stabbing his grandmother 111 times and then removing her organs with a knife.

Would banning guns have kept that from happening?

There are more than 3 million reports of child abuse in the United States every single year.

Would banning guns keep that from happening?

An average of five children die as a result of child abuse in the United States every single day.

Would banning guns keep that from happening?

The United States has the highest child abuse death rate on the entire globe.

Would banning guns keep that from happening?

It is estimated that 500,000 Americans that will be born this year will be sexually abused before they turn 18.

Would banning guns keep that from happening?

In the United States today, it is estimated that one out of every four girls is sexually abused before they become adults.

Would banning guns keep that from happening?

If there was a way to take all of the guns away from all of the criminals, I would be all in favor of it.  Unfortunately, no government on the planet has been able to do that.

Instead, we have seen that criminals thrive whenever gun bans are instituted and the guns are taken away from law-abiding citizens.

But the bottom line is that our social decay will not be solved either by more guns or less guns.

Our social decay is the result of decades of bad decisions.  We have pushed morality out of our schools, out of government and out of almost every aspect of public life.  Now we are experiencing the bitter fruit of those decisions.

And this is not a problem that our government is going to be able to fix.  Violent crime increased by 18 percent in 2011, and this is just the beginning.

As our economy gets even worse, the rot and decay that have been eating away the foundations of America are going to become even more evident.  The number of Americans living in poverty grows with each passing day, and millions upon millions of people are becoming very desperate.

Desperate people do desperate things, and crime, rioting and looting are going to become commonplace in the United States in the years ahead.

So you can pretend that the government is going to be able to keep our society from crumbling all you want, but that is not going to help you when a gang of desperate criminals has invaded your home and is attacking your family.

We definitely should mourn for the victims in Connecticut.  It was a horrible national tragedy.

But this is just the beginning.  The fabric of our society is coming apart at the seams.  The feeling of safety and security that we all used to take for granted has been shattered, and the streets of America are going to steadily become much more dangerous.

I hope that you are ready.

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/society-is-crumbling-right-in-front-of-our-eyes-and-banning-guns-wont-help
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« Reply #35 on: December 30, 2012, 04:07:24 pm »

Not just U.S cities!!!

Lights to be turned off in France to save money and show 'sobriety' Paris may go dark in the early hours of the morning if new plans go ahead
Traders fears the blackout would negatively affect tourism and the economy


Paris may lose its trademark glow next year after plans emerged to extinguish its street lighting at night to save money.
French President Francois Hollande and his energy minister Delphine Batho are considering turning out the lights in and outside public buildings, offices and shops in the early hours of the morning.
If the scheme goes ahead, late-night revellers in the city would be advised to carry torches if they venture out between the hours of 1 and 7am.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2254565/Lights-turned-France-save-money-sobriety.html
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« Reply #36 on: December 31, 2012, 07:17:05 am »

Quote
late-night revelers in the city would be advised to carry torches

They might be carrying not only torches, but pitch forks too!
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« Reply #37 on: January 01, 2013, 06:24:51 am »

Why?

Why does it seem like America is getting crazier with each passing year?  It has become glaringly apparent that very deep corruption has taken root in our society from the lowest levels of society all the way up to the highest levels of society.  In fact, some of the worst behavior of all is being exhibited by those that are supposed to be “examples” for our young people – politicians, bankers, lawyers, CEOs, etc.  As we enter 2013, the American people are greedy, selfish, boastful, proud, arrogant, disrespectful, ungrateful, materialistic, unforgiving, without self-control and they are completely and totally addicted to entertainment.  They believe that America will always be “the greatest nation on earth” just because of who we are, and they believe that the rest of the world should look up to us as a bright, shining example of everything that is good in the world.  Meanwhile, we lead the world in a large number of negative categories and our society is decaying right in front of our eyes.  It reminds me of what happened during the waning days of the Roman Empire.  The Romans just assumed that Rome would always be dominant forever, and they became extremely complacent and extraordinarily decadent.  We all know how that turned out, and at this point things are not looking good for America either.

So where do we go from here?

Well, it might help to ask ourselves a few questions as another year begins.

The following are 25 “why questions” for you to ponder as we enter 2013…

Why did the New York Times (the most read newspaper in the country) publish an article by a Georgetown University professor entitled “Let’s Give Up On The Constitution“?  What kind of message are they trying to send by publishing that trash?

Why is the U.S. government actively supporting and giving aid to Syrian rebels that are beheading Christians?  Just the other day, Syrian rebels beheaded one Christian man and fed his body to dogs.  The man that they killed had recently been married and was expecting his first child.

Why is the U.S. military sending troops to 35 different African nations in 2013?  Can we really afford to be the police of the world?

Why does California keep doing such stupid things?  On January 1st, more than 800 new laws (most of them ridiculous) go into effect in the state.

Why is so much U.S. real estate being bought up by China?  Chinese citizens purchased one out of every ten homes that were sold in the state of California in 2011.

Why is Texas Governor Rick Perry resurrecting the Trans-Texas Corridor project?  Does he honestly believe that nobody will notice?

Why is the mainstream media ignoring the fact that the percentage of Americans that are against a ban of handguns is at an all-time high?

Why is the mainstream media ignoring a recent theater shooting that was stopped by a man with a gun?

Why do celebrities that claim to be “anti-gun” constantly make movies that are absolutely brimming with gun violence?

Why is genetically-modified rice that has human genes in it being grown in Kansas?

Why is the Obama administration working so hard to “force Christians to act against their faith“?

Why was a surveillance drone hovering over the Vikings-Packers game at the Metrodome on Sunday?

Why did the U.S. government ask the Mexican government to help them increase participation in the U.S. food stamp program?

Why does the U.S. government have a website that teaches immigrants how to sign up for welfare programs once they arrive in the United States?

If “terrorists” are the threat we are all supposed to be worried about, then why is the U.S. government spending gigantic mountains of money to watch and monitor Americans?  Today, the American people are the most surveilled people in the history of the world.  Why is this happening?  What will our society eventually look like if we keep going down this path?

Why is the mainstream media being so quiet about the giant sinkholes that are opening up all over the world?

Why have volcanic activity and earthquake activity along the Ring of Fire increased so dramatically as we approach 2013?

Why are Protestants losing political power so rapidly in America today?

Why does the Obama administration seem so determined to reduce the size of the U.S. strategic nuclear arsenal?

Why don’t more Americans know about the population control agenda of the global elite?

Why are so many workers claiming Social Security disability?  Back in 1967, there were about 41 workers for every person on Social Security disability.  Today, there are only about 16 workers for every person on Social Security disability.

Why do 77,000 federal employees earn more money than the governors of their own states do?

Why does it cost American taxpayers more than a billion dollars to take care of the Obamas each year?

Why is Hillary Clinton the most admired woman in America?

Why is Barack Obama the most admired man in America?

Do you have any why questions to add to this list?

If so, please feel free to post a comment with your suggestions below…

http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/why

uhm, how about Amerikas rejection of Jesus and that we are on the advent of the Great Day of the Lord?
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« Reply #38 on: January 01, 2013, 08:24:38 am »

Oh, I could add a bunch to that list no doubt! All those questions and more is why many are losing it. Nothing is making any sense, and the unbelieving just don't have anything to fall back on that they can trust, so the situation is extremely bleak-looking for them. It appears to them that there is no real hope of saving the country, and when people get to that point of mind, it's gets real bad.
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« Reply #39 on: January 05, 2013, 11:18:55 am »

'We've lost respect for life': Detroit records deadliest year in decades

The homicide rate in the city of Detroit continued a grim upward trend in 2012, hitting its highest peak in nearly two decades, officials said Thursday.

A dwindling population -- 706,585 people in 2011, according to the U.S. Census estimate -- and the rise in homicides combined to make Detroit’s murder rate among the highest in the nation, Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and Police Chief Chester Logan announced at a press conference. 

“We’ve just lost respect for each other; we’ve lost respect for life,” Bing said. “I don’t want to say that you can forget about this generation or the generation before us, but if we’re going to solve the problem, we’ve got to get into the heads and the minds and the hearts of our young people, and it’s going to take all of us to do that.”

Detroit’s total of 411 homicides in 2012, up from 377 the previous year, includes 386 criminal homicides and 25 “justifiable homicides” that included three shootings by police, according to numbers released by the city. The number of criminal homicides increased 12 percent from 344 in 2011. The total in 2010 was 308.

Even as violent crime rates in the U.S. fell for the fifth consecutive year in 2011, the homicide rate in Detroit rose to a level higher than nearly 40 years ago when the city was known as the Murder Capital, the Detroit News reported. The same day the city's official crime statistics were announced, a Detroit woman was charged with fatally stabbing her 8-year-old daughter and a cab driver was killed in a double shooting on the city’s northwest side.

“I think the message that we want our citizens to understand is that we need them. We need them to help us. I just don’t believe that our police department should have the total responsibility for safety in the city," Bing said. "There are, as the chief said, he can have an additional thousand cops, but there are things that are happening in homes and families in the communities and the neighborhoods that whether a cop was there or not is not going to stop the crime.”

Homicides have declined nationwide for years, most notably in New York, where in 2012 there were 414 homicides and a rate of one per 19,915 people.

New Orleans reported a small drop from 199 to 193 in 2012. With a population 360,740, the rate was one per 1,869 residents.

In Washington, D.C., there were 88 homicides in 2012, the lowest total since 1961. With a population of 617,966, that puts the rate at one per 7,023 people.

Elsewhere across the country, homicide rates made only slight jumps compared to Detroit.

In Los Angeles, the homicide rate increased from 291 to 294 last year, with a population of nearly 3.8 million.
The homicide rate in Chicago went up nearly 17 percent in 2012, topping 500 for the first time in four years. Last year’s total was 505, up from 433 in 2011.
Homicides in Cleveland, Ohio, spiked in 2012 with 97 and a rate of one per 4,060 people.
Philadelphia homicides increased from 324 to 331 in 2012. With a population of 1.54 million, that amounts to one per 4,642.
In St. Louis, which has a population of 318,169 people, the rate stayed the same at between 2011 and 2012 at one per 2,815 people. There were 113 homicides last year, well below the average of 141 for the five previous years.
Detroit Police Chief Logan said the criminal activity in the city comes from a small minority of the city's population.

"These aren't the average citizens we are talking about," Logan said. "Many of these people are involved in nefarious walks of life, and there's a difference between a law-abiding citizen who shoots a gun and a criminal or a thug who's out there using one."

Still, Mayor Bing offered messages of hope for the city.

“We can’t give up, we can’t give in, and we’ve really got to let the small percentage of our population that’s creating havoc in our city know that we’re not going to continue to accept it and all of us need to get involved and help each other solve the problem,” Bing said.

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/04/16352612-weve-lost-respect-for-life-detroit-records-deadliest-year-in-decades?lite
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« Reply #40 on: January 06, 2013, 05:50:41 pm »

Detroiter Claims 911 Call Of Stolen Van With Gun Was Ignored

While Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and Interim Police Chief Chester Logan explore a restructuring of the city’s police department, some residents are expressing frustration with how their calls are being handled.

Detroiter Rachelle Guyton said she called 911 around 6:30 a.m. Saturday to report that her 2003 Chrysler Town & Country minivan had been stolen from an apartment building in Palmer Park — but it wasn’t the van she was worried about.

“I have a gun under my car seat, and when I called the police department to explain this to them and try to have them help… they didn’t give me any attention. They told me I had to wait until 8 o’clock to call back. What if someone gets shot with this? What if a child gets this in his hand? I’m responsible, and I just can’t have that on my conscience,” Guyton told WWJ’s Terri Lee.

Guyton, who has a CCW permit for her 9-millimeter Smith & Wesson, said she’s disappointed in how her call was handled, especially with all the talk about guns surrounding the city’s recently released crime statistics for 2012 — numbers which show the highest murder rate in the city in nearly 20 years.

“They’re not trying to make anything a top priority, they won’t send a car out here to investigate, they won’t do anything. So, I’m stuck here not concerned about the car whatsoever. I will take the bus, you know, that’s not important. The importance here is the gun and the safety for other people,” said Guyton.

Detroit police declined to comment on the situation.

Guyton said her minivan has a Michigan license plate number ”3HZH63″ and is midnight blue in color. Anyone with information is asked to call police.

http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2013/01/05/detroiter-claims-911-call-of-stolen-van-with-gun-was-ignored/
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« Reply #41 on: January 06, 2013, 07:09:40 pm »

Detroiter Claims 911 Call Of Stolen Van With Gun Was Ignored

While Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and Interim Police Chief Chester Logan explore a restructuring of the city’s police department, some residents are expressing frustration with how their calls are being handled.

Detroiter Rachelle Guyton said she called 911 around 6:30 a.m. Saturday to report that her 2003 Chrysler Town & Country minivan had been stolen from an apartment building in Palmer Park — but it wasn’t the van she was worried about.

“I have a gun under my car seat, and when I called the police department to explain this to them and try to have them help… they didn’t give me any attention. They told me I had to wait until 8 o’clock to call back. What if someone gets shot with this? What if a child gets this in his hand? I’m responsible, and I just can’t have that on my conscience,” Guyton told WWJ’s Terri Lee.

Guyton, who has a CCW permit for her 9-millimeter Smith & Wesson, said she’s disappointed in how her call was handled, especially with all the talk about guns surrounding the city’s recently released crime statistics for 2012 — numbers which show the highest murder rate in the city in nearly 20 years.

“They’re not trying to make anything a top priority, they won’t send a car out here to investigate, they won’t do anything. So, I’m stuck here not concerned about the car whatsoever. I will take the bus, you know, that’s not important. The importance here is the gun and the safety for other people,” said Guyton.

Detroit police declined to comment on the situation.

Guyton said her minivan has a Michigan license plate number ”3HZH63″ and is midnight blue in color. Anyone with information is asked to call police.

http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2013/01/05/detroiter-claims-911-call-of-stolen-van-with-gun-was-ignored/

Another attempt to promote gun control quietly? Undecided
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« Reply #42 on: January 07, 2013, 03:58:20 am »

Large Cities All Over America Are Degenerating Into Gang-Infested War Zones

Large U.S. cities that the rest of the world used to look at in envy are now being transformed into gang-infested hellholes with skyrocketing crime rates.  Cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Camden, East St. Louis, New Orleans and Oakland were once bustling with economic activity, but as industry has fled those communities poverty has exploded and so has criminal activity.  Meanwhile, financial problems have caused all of those cities to significantly reduce their police forces.  Sadly, this same pattern is being repeated in hundreds of communities all over the nation.  The mainstream media loves to focus on mass shooters such as Adam Lanza, but the reality is that gang violence is a far greater problem in the United States than mass shooters ever will be.  There are approximately 1.4 million gang members living in America today according to the FBI.  That number has shot up by a whopping 40 percent just since 2009.  There are several factors fueling this trend.  Unemployment among our young people is at an epidemic level, about one out of every three U.S. children lives in a home without a father, and there are millions of young men who have come into this country illegally and have no way to legally support themselves once they arrive in our cities.  Gangs provide a support system, a feeling of "community", and a sense of purpose for many young people.  Unfortunately, most of these gangs use violence and crime to achieve their goals, and they are taking over communities all over America.  If your community is not a gang-infested war zone yet, you should consider yourself to be very fortunate.  If nothing is done about this, the violence and the crime that is fueled by these gangs will continue to spread, and eventually nearly every single community in the United States will be affected by it.

Let's take a closer look at some of the large cities all over America that are degenerating into gang-infested war zones...

East St. Louis

East St. Louis has a national reputation for being a city that you want to avoid.  The following is from a recent Bloomberg article about the growing crime in that community...

    Dodging open manholes where thieves had swiped cast-iron covers, Stephen Wigginton drives the crumbling streets of his hometown, East St. Louis, Illinois, pointing out new landmarks in America’s most violent city.

    There’s the shopping mall where a police officer was shot in the face, a youth center that saw a triple homicide in September, and scattered about the city of 27,000 are brightly lit gas stations that serve as magnets for carjackers, hit-and-run robbers and killers.

    “It’s the Wild West,” said Wigginton, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Illinois.

Today, the murder rate in East St. Louis is 17 times higher than the national average, but financial problems have forced huge cuts to the police budget.  The number of police patrolling the streets of East St. Louis was reduced by 33 percent between 2008 and 2011.  Police in the city admit that they are outgunned and outmanned, but there is not much that can be done about it.

Camden

Camden, New Jersey is another city that has experienced huge cuts to the police budget.  Their police force shrank by about a third between 2008 and 2011.  Today, Camden is considered to be one of the most dangerous cities in America and it has a murder rate that is about ten times higher than New York City.

The gangs have a very strong hold over Camden, and kids kill kids on a regular basis in the city.  The following is a brief excerpt from a recent article about the horrible violence that is plaguing Camden…

    At the vigil last week, residents prayed that Camden would simply find peace and that the masked gunman who killed Jewel Manire and Khalil Gibson would be caught.

    As it grew darker, Michael Benjamin stood toward the back of the crowd, his son huddled even closer now, and shook his head.

    “I’ve known at least 45 kids who’ve been killed in my lifetime,” he said, the boy holding his finger. “I stopped counting in 2004, though.”

Chicago

In recent years there have been massive cuts to the police budget in Chicago due to financial difficulties.  At the same time, gang activity has dramatically increased in the city.

As a result, Chicago has become known for murders and violence.  The murder rate in Chicago was about 17 percent higher in 2012 than it was in 2011, and Chicago is now considered to be "the deadliest global city".

If you can believe it, the number of murders in Chicago during 2012 was roughly equivalent to the number of murders in the entire country of Japan during 2012.

And the primary reason for all of this violence in Chicago is the gangs.  As I have written about previously, there are only about 200 police officers assigned to Chicago's Gang Enforcement Unit.  It is their job to handle the estimated 100,000 gang members living in the city.

Approximately 80 percent of all murders and shootings in the city of Chicago are gang-related, and as the gangs continue to grow in size the violence in the city is going to get even worse.  If Barack Obama wants to do something about violence in America, perhaps he should start with his home city.

Detroit

I write a lot about Detroit, but that is because they are a perfect example of where the rest of America is headed if something dramatic is not done.

Detroit used to be one of the greatest manufacturing cities the world has ever seen, but over the past several decades the economic infrastructure of Detroit has been gutted and now there is very little industry left in the city.

Over half the children in the city live in poverty and a sense of hopelessness hangs in the air.  At the same time, financial problems have forced the city to lay off huge numbers of cops.  Back in 2005, there were about 4,000 police officers in Detroit.  Today there are only about 2,500 and another 100 are scheduled to be eliminated from the force soon.

Meanwhile, crime in Detroit just continues to get even worse.  There were 377 homicides in Detroit in 2011.  In 2012, that number rose to 411.

Things have gotten so bad that even even the Detroit police are telling people to "enter Detroit at your own risk".

New Orleans

New Orleans was a crime-infested city even before Hurricane Katrina hit it in 2005, but life has never quite been the same since that time.

The gangs have a very strong presence in the city, and there simply are not enough financial resources to keep crime in check.

If New Orleans was considered to be a separate nation, it would have the 2nd highest murder rate on the entire planet.  There are some areas of New Orleans that you simply do not ever want to venture into at night.

Meanwhile, the police force has been such a mess in recent years that the federal government finally decided to step in.  It is hoped that the "reforms" will mean less crime in New Orleans in future years, but I wouldn't count on it.

Oakland

Today, there are 626 police officers in Oakland, California.  That is about a 25 percent decline from the 837 police officers that were patrolling the streets of Oakland back in December 2008.

Predictably, criminals have stepped in and have taken advantage of the situation.  At one point in 2012, burglaries in the city of Oakland were up 43 percent over the previous year.

If you can believe it, more than 11,000 homes, cars and businesses were burglarized in Oakland during 2012.  That breaks down to approximately 33 burglaries a day.

Stockton

Police cuts in the city of Stockton, California have been so severe that the Stockton Police Officers' Association ran a billboard advertisement with the following message at one point: "Welcome to the 2nd most dangerous city in California: Stop laying off cops!"

At the same time, crime in Stockton continues to get even worse.  there have been more than 250 gold chain robberies in Stockton since the month of April, and there is no indication that crime in the city is going to slow down any time soon.

So what is the solution?

Should we have everyone turn in their guns?

No, that would just make the problem even worse.  The gangs aren't going to turn in their guns.  The only people who would turn in their guns would be law-abiding citizens.  That would just make them even more vulnerable to the violence and crime that are starting to spread like wildfire all over the nation.

We don't have a gun problem in America.  What we have is a gang problem.

In 2006, the Justice Department’s National Drug Intelligence Center reported that Mexican drug cartels were actively operating in 50 different U.S. cities.  By 2010, that number had risen to 1,286.

Many of these gang members run up long criminal records, but our overcrowded prison systems just keep releasing them back into the streets.  The results of this philosophy have been predictable.  The following is from a recent article by Daniel Greenfield...

    A breakdown of the Chicago killing fields shows that 83% of those murdered in Chicago last year had criminal records. In Philly, it’s 75%. In Milwaukee it’s 77% percent. In New Orleans, it’s 64%. In Baltimore, it’s 91%. Many were felons who had served time. And as many as 80% of the homicides were gang related.

    Chicago’s problem isn’t guns; it’s gangs. Gun control efforts in Chicago or any other major city are doomed because gangs represent organized crime networks which stretch down to Mexico, and trying to cut off their gun supply will be as effective as trying to cut off their drug supply.

This is not a time to take away the ability of law-abiding American families to defend themselves.  Instead, people need to put even more emphasis on self-defense as police forces all over the country are cut back.

Just recently, the city attorney of San Bernardino, California told citizens living there to "lock their doors and load their guns" because the police force in that city is being cut back again.

And that is good advice.  As the economy continues to decline and as millions more Americans fall into poverty, the violence is going to get even worse.

What would you do if a desperate criminal broke into your house and started searching through your home room by room?  That is the horrifying situation that one young mother down in Georgia was recently faced with...

    She quickly retreated to an attic crawlspace with the children, but not before she also picked up her handgun.

    The burglar, whom police identified as Paul Ali Slater, did a room-by-room search of the home, and when he reached the attic, she was ready.

    Walton County Sheriff Joe Chapman told WSBTV: 'The perpetrator opens that door. Of course, at that time he’s staring at her, her two children and a .38 revolver.'

    She reportedly fired all six rounds, missing only once. The other shots hit Slater about the face and neck.

    Sheriff Chapman told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: 'The guy’s face down, crying. The woman told him to stay down or she’d shoot again.'

What would have happened if she had not had any way to defend herself and her children?

That is something that we all need to think about.

For the last couple of decades, we have been fortunate to live in an era of falling crime rates.  Unfortunately, that era is now over.  Large cities all over the country are degenerating into gang-infested war zones, and what we are seeing right now is just the tip of the iceberg.

After the economy collapses, millions of people are going to become incredibly desperate and things are going to get much, much worse than this.

So what are you seeing in your area of the country?  Please feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts below...

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/large-cities-all-over-america-are-degenerating-into-gang-infested-war-zones
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« Reply #43 on: January 07, 2013, 08:44:08 am »

Quote
New Orleans

New Orleans was a crime-infested city even before Hurricane Katrina hit it in 2005, but life has never quite been the same since that time.

The gangs have a very strong presence in the city, and there simply are not enough financial resources to keep crime in check.

If New Orleans was considered to be a separate nation, it would have the 2nd highest murder rate on the entire planet.  There are some areas of New Orleans that you simply do not ever want to venture into at night.

Meanwhile, the police force has been such a mess in recent years that the federal government finally decided to step in.  It is hoped that the "reforms" will mean less crime in New Orleans in future years, but I wouldn't count on it.

The Churchianity pastors down there haven't done anyone any favors either(I know b/c I used to live there and crossed paths with a few of them frequently) - before I moved out of there after Katrina, they acted like God gave them visions over how their churches(especially one big Baptist one) would ravamp the city and what their roles would be. The pastor from the big Baptist one ended up partnering with Habitat for Humanity to build homes across the city.

Having done volunteer work at Habitat for Humanity a few years ago, this is NOT a Christian organization, it is ecumenical(which is why I'm confused over why self-professed Christians work at this place). Anyhow, this whole project that this big Baptist Church started in 2006 has unsurprisingly gone from getting alot of attention to now pretty much you don't hear about them anymore.
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« Reply #44 on: January 11, 2013, 10:48:40 pm »


Jackie Chan Thinks America is ‘The Most Corrupt’ Nation in the World



http://gawker.com/5975267/jackie-chan-thinks-america-is-the-most-corrupt-nation-in-the-world

1/11/13

As it turns out, Jackie Chan is not very grateful to the country that helped him roundhouse kick his way into an estimated $130 million fortune. Speaking on a television show in Hong Kong, Chan had some harsh words for the good ol' U. S. of A.
 
Chan was discussing recent progress China has made, removing corruption from its government (with limited success) when he called America "the most corrupt [country] in the world." Chan then continues (as translated by Ministry of Tofu), blaming America for the world's troubles and spouting some seriously nationalistic nonsense:

Quote
Chan: Of course. Where does this Great Breakdown (financial crisis) come from? It started exactly from the world, the United States. When I was interviewed in the U.S., people asked me, I said the same thing. I said now that China has become strong, everyone is making an issue of China. If our own countrymen don't support our country, who will support our country? We know our country has many problems. We [can] talk about it when the door is closed. To outsiders, [we should say] "our country is the best."
 
Host: So he can't get enough of his more than 20 ambassador titles. I think the Ministry of Foreign Affairs should ask him to be the ambassador to the United States.
 
Chan: Seriously, I am always like, when the door is closed, "Our country is like this and this. Who and who is not good." But outside, "Our country is the best, like so and so, is the best." You cannot say our country has problems [when you are outside], like "Yes, our country is bad."
 
As the Washington Post's Max Fisher points out, Chen has a history of controversial political views. Chan once called Taiwan and Hong Kong examples of what happens when you have "too much freedom." He also once said "Chinese people need to be controlled, otherwise they will do whatever they want," regarding Chinese censorship of his movies.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2013, 10:51:06 pm by BornAgain2 » Report Spam   Logged
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« Reply #45 on: January 12, 2013, 02:40:52 am »

Spoken like a true Chinese Communist.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #46 on: January 14, 2013, 04:02:17 am »

Armed vigilante groups policing 2 Mexican towns

coming soon to Amerika, oh wait, in some places in Amerika this is allready going on

Several hundred civilians have taken up arms in two towns in a southwestern Mexico state and are arresting people suspected of crimes and imposing a curfew, leading authorities to promise to reinforce security forces in the area.

People wearing ski masks or bandanas and carrying small arms this week began manning checkpoints on roads into the municipalities of Ayutla de los Libres and Teconoapa in Guerrero state's Costa Chica area about 75 miles (120 kilometers) southeast of the Pacific resort of Acapulco. Leaders said they were acting against crime and insecurity.

Guerrero Gov. Angel Aguirre Rivero responded Friday by announcing that security in the region would be bolstered by sending in Mexican soldiers and marines and federal and state police officers.

People in the area said about 800 residents were participating in the armed groups acting as unofficial police. The vigilantes ordered a 10 p.m. curfew for the two towns and are looking for suspected criminals. Schools have suspended classes.

In Ayutla, Romualdo Remigio Cantu, one of the coordinators for the civic group Union of Peoples and Social Organizations of Guerrero, said that more than 30 people had been arrested. The detainees are accused of drug trafficking, extortion and kidnapping, he said.

A man in a ski mask at one roadblock told reporters that townspeople had to act against criminals.

"They kill, extort, ****. You do not know if they are drug dealers, thugs, who want to grab everything," he said. "We want to return peace and tranquility to the entire population. Only the people can restore order."

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/L/LT_MEXICO_ARMED_CIVILIANS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-01-12-18-48-21
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« Reply #47 on: January 28, 2013, 06:50:24 am »

Social Decay + Illegal Immigration + Poverty = Open War On The Streets Of America

What did you think was going to happen?  Moral standards have been falling for decades, we have allowed massive hordes of criminals, gang members and drug dealers to enter this country illegally, and thanks to our declining economy our inner cities are being absolutely ravaged by poverty.  Was such a combination really going to produce peace and prosperity?  Should we be so shocked that we now have open war on the streets of America?  In the United States today, there are millions upon millions of young people that can't find jobs, that are living in poverty, that have no hope for a better future, and that have been raised without any moral standards.  These young people are becoming increasingly desperate, and desperate people do desperate things.  As I wrote about the other day, for those under the age of 18 living in the city of Detroit the poverty rate is 60 percent.  Should we be surprised that Detroit police are now telling people to "enter Detroit at your own risk".  At this point, the FBI says that there are approximately 1.4 million gang members living in our cities.  That number has risen by an astounding 40 percent just since 2009.  Did we somehow delude ourselves into thinking that there would not be severe consequences for allowing that to happen?  Today,  Mexican drug cartels are active in more than 1,000 U.S. cities.  Are they selling drugs and committing crimes in the area where you live?  Well, don't be so shocked.  The federal government has left our border with Mexico wide open for decades even though the most violent drug war on the planet has been raging just across that border.  Stupid decisions produce stupid results.  Sadly, this is just the beginning.  When our economy fully crashes the open warfare on the streets of America is going to get much, much worse.

Let's take a closer look at what is currently happening in a few of our largest cities...

Los Angeles

Did you know that Latino gangs are systematically pushing black families out of some areas of Los Angeles?

For example, once upon a time Compton was a predominantly African-American area.  But now it is 65 percent Latino, and there is a relentless campaign of intimidation against many of the African-American families that remain.

One of these incidents was recently profiled in the Los Angeles Times.  A black family moved into Compton near the end of December, and since that time they have been the victims of endless harassment by Latino gangs.  When a 19-year-old African-American friend came to visit the family one day, four thugs told him that blacks were barred from the neighborhood and they started beating him with metal pipes.  A story in the Los Angeles Times described what happened next...

The 19-year-old family friend managed to break free that first day and run into the house, where the children were the only ones at home.

The attackers left, but a half-hour later a crowd of as many as 20 people stood on the lawn yelling threats and epithets. A beer bottle crashed through the living room window as the youngsters watched in horror.

"They were scared if they called the sheriff they'd be killed," Westin said. "So they called their mom, who called the Sheriff's Department."

The gang members were gone by the time deputies arrived, but they kept coming back, almost daily, driving by slowly until they got someone's attention, then yelling racial insults and telling them to leave. The mother sent the children to live with relatives and is now packing up to leave herself.
As horrifying as that sounds, the truth is that it is not an isolated incident.

According to the Los Angeles Times, similar attacks "have taken place in Harbor Gateway, Highland Park, Pacoima, San Bernardino, Canoga Park and Wilmington, among other places."

Oakland

Up the coast in Oakland, a horribly violent gang war has gotten so out of hand that city officials are holding press conferences about it.

Violent crime in the city of Oakland increased by 23 percent in 2012, and police say that gang members were responsible for most of the approximately 2,000 robberies and 65 homicides that took place in the second half of the year.

As the San Francisco Chronicle recently explained, the violence continues to escalate and city officials don't know how to solve it...

Nearly all the violent crimes in Oakland in the last few months, including two killings over the weekend, have been committed as part of a "war" between rival groups that was sparked by the slaying of a girl last summer, Police Chief Howard Jordan said Monday.

Jordan said "about 90 percent" of the killings, robberies, shootings and other "senseless acts of violence" in the city since mid-2012 can be directly tied to the killing of a girlfriend of one of the combatants.

Over time, the warring factions have become increasingly violent and have grown in number, sometimes by merging with other groups, Jordan said at a news conference called in response to an outbreak of gunfire over the weekend.
Chicago

Savage murders happen so regularly in Chicago at this point that very few people are even shocked by the headlines any longer.  The murder rate in the city increased by about 17 percent in 2012, and 2013 has already started with quite a bang.

Just check out what happened on Saturday.  7 people were murdered and six others were left wounded.  The following is how the Chicago Tribune described one of the crime scenes...

On West Van Buren Street, a body could be seen lying in the roadway, near the curb and a bus stop.

A man who only identified himself as the teen victim's uncle said the boy, whose family lived nearby, had simply gone to run an errand.

"He was just going to the store," the man said. "They just killed him just like that."

Later, the man paced back and forth on the sidewalk, shaking his head in disbelief.
So why has Chicago become such a violent city?

It is because of the gangs.

Today, approximately 80 percent of all murders that happen in the city of Chicago are gang-related.  And as I have written about previously, there are only about 200 police officers assigned to Chicago's Gang Enforcement Unit to handle the estimated 100,000 gang members living in the city.

Perhaps Chicago could do more to handle all the crime if they had more money, but at this point they are flat broke and so is the entire state of Illinois.  In fact, the state of Illinois just had its credit rating downgraded once again.

I picked out three examples to discuss above, but similar things could really be said about hundreds of U.S. cities from coast to coast.

Once upon a time, gang activity was fairly limited to certain pockets of the country.  But now, it is more widespread than ever.

According to the Justice Department’s National Drug Intelligence Center,  Mexican drug cartels were actively operating in 50 different U.S. cities in 2006.

By 2010, that number had skyrocketed to 1,286.

Are you starting to get the picture?

So why doesn't the federal government secure the border and make sure that everyone that is coming into this country is doing so legally?

That is a very good question.  For some reason, every single president that we have had in recent decades has chosen to leave the U.S. border with Mexico virtually wide open.

And so millions of criminals, gang members, drug dealers and welfare parasites continue to pour into the country.  The following is what one local police chief down in Texas is saying about what he is seeing along the border...

The problem is not going away.

"Most of them have people here or they're just trying to make it over here so they can start making a better living for themselves," La Joya Police Chief Julian Gutierrez told Action 4 News.

No matter how many miles of border fence is erected—it seems nothing will stop the thousands of immigrants, crossing our border illegally, from continuing their journey.

"A lot of times we talk to them and ask them why they're coming here,” Gutierrez explained. “They say they're coming for the 'American Dream.' I always tell them that they're here illegally---how do they expect to find work? They always say it's a lot better than their country.”
So what is the Obama administration doing about this?

They don't consider it to be a problem.

In fact, one of our stations along the border with Mexico will no longer be manned with real people at all.  The following is from a recent ABC News report...

Get ready for the very first "unmanned" border station on the U.S.-Mexico border. Slated to open at the end of this month, the Big Bend National Park in Texas will be staffed by, you guessed it, computers.
But what the Obama administration does seem to be concerned about is giving immigrants lots of "benefits" once they get here.

For example, did you know that the federal government actually has a website that teaches immigrants how to sign up for welfare programs once they arrive in the United States?

Meanwhile, we can't even come close to taking care of our own citizens.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are more than 146 million Americans that are considered to be either "poor" or "low income" at this point.

Poverty is absolutely exploding in this country, and the middle class gets smaller with each passing day.  When the next major economic downturn strikes, the unemployment numbers are going to start spiking again and millions of families are going to lose all hope that things will ever turn around for them.

Meanwhile, the very foundations of our society continue to rot and decay right in front of our eyes.  At this point, approximately one out of every three children in the U.S. lives in a home without a father.  The U.S. has the highest divorce rate in the world, the highest rate of teen pregnancy in the world, and there are 19 million new STD infections in the United States every single year.

Our nation is a complete and total mess, and many of our major cities are being transformed into gang-infested war zones that are on the verge of total meltdown.

Is it any wonder that millions of American families have chosen to become preppers?

Nothing is going to stop the societal meltdown that is coming.  That is especially true with Barack Obama running things.

Sadly, most Americans still have their heads in the sand and are pretending that everything will be okay somehow.

Sadly, most Americans still have a tremendous amount of faith in the system.

But anyone with a brain should be able to see the storm clouds that are coming.

So get prepared while you still can.

Time is running out.

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/social-decay-illegal-immigration-poverty-open-war-on-the-streets-of-america
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« Reply #48 on: January 29, 2013, 10:01:15 am »

Stuck in Reverse, Detroit Edges Closer to Bankruptcy

At the Detroit Auto Show earlier this month, luxury was in the air. Pricey new Bentleys and Maseratis glittered - including a Maserati 2014 Quattroporte with a $132,000 price tag; U.S. Cabinet Secretaries and dignitaries rubbed shoulders; and many of the well-heeled attendees ponied up for a $300-a-ticket black-tie charity ball.

But in a city that is slowly dying, the glitz didn't extend much beyond the Cobo Center exhibition hall.

General Motors and Chrysler, which along with Ford gave the Motor City its identity, survived near-death experiences after filing for bankruptcy during the financial crisis. Now, Detroit itself is edging closer to a similar precipice, only unlike the automakers, its chances of getting a federal bailout are almost nonexistent.

The story of Detroit's decline is decades old: Its tax revenue and population have shrunk and labor costs have remained out of whack. But the city's budget problems have deepened to such an extent that it could run out of cash in a matter of weeks or months and ultimately be forced into what would be the largest-ever Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy filing in the United States.

Frustrated by the lack of concrete progress, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, a Republican, last month appointed a team to scour the city's books. The audit could result in a state takeover of Detroit's finances through the appointment of an emergency financial manager. Such a manager, who would seize control of the city's checkbook, could then propose federal bankruptcy court as the best option.

Snyder, who has called the situation "a crisis in terms of financial affairs," said the team would deliver its report in February.

"Detroit is teetering on the verge of bankruptcy after the City Council has failed to make the necessary cuts to deal with having a smaller population," said Rick Jones, chairman of the Republican majority caucus in the state Senate.

Jones, who has indicated he does not favor a bankruptcy, said he would like to see an emergency manager installed to fix the city's problems. If that failed, there would be a case for finding a way to shrink the Detroit municipal area, he argued.

Detroit's population is now just over 700,000 - down 30 percent since 1990 - but the city still has to provide services to an area encompassing more land than San Francisco, Boston and the borough of Manhattan.

While Democratic Mayor Dave Bing and the Detroit City Council have moved to reduce spending and initiate some reforms to stave off a takeover, including layoffs and wage and benefit cuts, the progress may not be enough for Michigan officials and lawmakers.

Streets Without Lights

In the booming post-Second World War era, Detroit was America's fifth-largest city. Today, it ranks 18th. In addition to a sharp population decline, it suffers from high unemployment related to a loss of businesses, a flood of home foreclosures and a cut in state funding. That has led to shriveling revenue, leaving the city unable to afford a workforce of more than 10,000 and the surging health and pension costs that go with them and with its retirees. As a result, credit ratings on Detroit's approximately $8.2 billion of outstanding debt have sunk deeper into junk territory.

The city's labor costs, including health care and pensions, are shrinking in absolute terms but rising as a share of the budget. They are slated to drop to $968 million, or nearly 49.5 percent of the operating budget, in the fiscal year ending June 30 versus $1.14 billion, or 45.5 percent, a year earlier.

Signs of decline are everywhere - in a rising crime rate, streets without lights and block after block of abandoned buildings. The murder rate of one per 1,719 people last year was more than 11 times the rate in New York City. The jobless rate is above 18 percent, more than twice rate for the country as a whole.

Collision Course

A bankruptcy would be messy.

The interests of creditors would likely collide with those of labor unions wanting to protect workers' benefits, said Eric Scorsone, a Michigan State University economist who has written papers on municipal bankruptcy and on the state's emergency manager laws.

"It is going to require the players - the City Council, the mayor, the state - to be on the same page. If you go into bankruptcy with a lot of conflict and dissent, it's going to cost more," said Scorsone.

It could also be racially explosive. Detroit has the largest percentage of black people of any U.S. city, with 83 percent of the population identifying themselves as African American, black or Negro, according to the 2010 U.S. census. Most of Michigan's state government, including the governor's office, is run by white Republicans.

Detroit Council Member JoAnn Watson, who along with two other members of the city's all-black City Council has been resisting reform measures, said she is still hopeful of a federal bailout or an injection of state money that she claims the city is owed.

Mayor Bing would not comment for this story.

Consequences, What Consequences?

The automakers have little to say publicly about the crisis. Most of their operations in Michigan are now outside Detroit, and getting any top executive to even discuss the possibility of a city bankruptcy was almost impossible at the auto show. "I don't want to get into the politics," said GM CEO Dan Akerson, while Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said: "I don't see what the consequences would be for us."

One of the city's biggest challenges is its complex set of labor agreements with a whopping 48 bargaining units that represent most of the city's workforce.

Max Newman, a bankruptcy attorney at Michigan-based Butzel Long, said a Chapter 9 bankruptcy could help the city throw out its collective bargaining agreements with unions.

Costs would have to be tackled since Detroit cannot just jack up taxes to reduce the cumulative budget deficit, which grew to $326.6 million in fiscal 2012 from $196.6 million in fiscal 2011. The state would likely resist tax increases, and they might only make matters worse anyway. "If taxes go up any further it would exacerbate the flight out of the city," Newman said.

But for some of those who have seen Detroit struggle for years, bankruptcy is starting to look like the least awful option - even though it will be painful.

"I think...off and on, that it wouldn't be a bad idea," said former Ford chief financial officer Allan Gilmour, now the president of Detroit's Wayne State University. "Let's clean this out once and for all."

http://www.cnbc.com/id/100414480
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« Reply #49 on: January 29, 2013, 10:02:45 am »

Detroit firefighters rush 2 kids to hospital after no EMS was available

Two children were transported to a hospital by a rescue squad Tuesday morning after an EMS unit wasn't available to immediately respond to a house fire on the city's west side.

Firefighters responded to a blaze at an occupied home on the 5200 block of Tarnow Street Tuesday morning.

Detroit Fire officials said EMS personnel weren't on the scene after firefighters removed the children from the house, so personnel from Rescue Squad 4 performed CPR on both on the way to Henry Ford Hospital.

"They did a hell of a rescue; I just hope those kids are alright," Senior Chief Lewis Roelans said.

A Rescue Squad is an apparatus that carries medical equipment, Jaws of Life, generators and ropes for rescue. But they aren't typically used as a substitute for EMS rigs.

"They don't do that normally, but EMS wasn't on the scene and where minutes count, they have oxygen and everything handy," Roelans said.

Fire officials said the incident is under investigation.



From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130129/METRO01/301290379#ixzz2JNgajWNO
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« Reply #50 on: February 08, 2013, 03:44:18 am »

Bankrupt, Decaying And Nearly Dead: 24 Facts About The City Of Detroit That Will Shock You

If you want to know what the future of America is going to be like, just look at the city of Detroit.  Once upon a time it was a symbol of everything that America was doing right, but today it has been transformed into a rotting, decaying, post-apocalyptic hellhole.  Detroit was once the fourth-largest city in the United States, and in 1960 Detroit had the highest per-capita income in the entire nation.  It was the greatest manufacturing city the world had ever seen, and the rest of the globe looked at Detroit with a sense of awe and wonder.  But now the city of Detroit has become a bad joke to the rest of the world.  Unemployment is rampant, 60 percent of the children are living in poverty and the city government is on the verge of bankruptcy.  They say that Detroit is just a matter of "weeks or months" away from running out of cash, and when Detroit does declare bankruptcy it will be the largest municipal bankruptcy in the history of the United States.  But don't look down on Detroit, because the truth is that Detroit is really a metaphor for what is happening to America as a whole.  In the United States today, our manufacturing infrastructure has been gutted, poverty is absolutely exploding and we are rapidly approaching national bankruptcy.  Detroit may have gotten there first, but the rest of the country will follow soon enough.

Back during the boom years, Detroit was known for making great cars.  Today, it is known for scenes of desolation and decay.  It is full of vandalized homes, abandoned schools and empty factories.  The following description of what Detroit looks like at this point is from an article by Barry Yeoman...

    It’s hard to describe the city’s physical landscape without producing what Detroiters call “ruin ****.” Brick houses with bays and turrets sit windowless or boarded up. Whole blocks, even clusters of blocks, have been bulldozed. Retail strips have been reduced to a dollar store here, a storefront church there, and a whole lot of plywood in between. Not a single chain supermarket remains.

So what caused the downfall of one of the greatest cities on earth?

Well, here is a hint...

Between December 2000 and December 2010, 48 percent of the manufacturing jobs in Michigan were lost.

When you are a manufacturing area, and you lose half of your manufacturing jobs over the course of a single decade, of course things are going to get really, really bad.

So just how bad have things gotten in Detroit?

The following are 24 facts about the city of Detroit that will shock you...

#1 Detroit was once the fourth-largest city in the United States, and it was once home to close to 2 million people.  But over the last several decades people have been fleeing in droves.  According to the 2010 census, only 713,000 people now live in Detroit, and city officials admit that the population has probably slipped under 700,000 at this point.

#2 The population of Detroit has declined by about 25 percent over the past decade.  The last time the population of Detroit was this low was all the way back in 1910.

#3 Today, Detroit is only the 18th-largest city in America.  It is now smaller than Austin, Texas and Charlotte, North Carolina.

#4 Back in 1960, the city of Detroit had the highest per-capita income in the United States.

#5 Today, the unemployment rate in Detroit is more than 18 percent, which is more than twice as high as the nation as a whole.

#6 According to a report that was just recently released, approximately 60 percent of all children in Detroit live in poverty.

#7 Approximately one-third of Detroit's 140 square miles are either vacant or derelict.

#8 The city government of Detroit has closed dozens of schools and has decided to cut off public services to the "heavily blighted areas".

#9 According to one estimate, there are 33,500 empty houses and 91,000 vacant residential lots in the city of Detroit today.

#10 The median price of a home in Detroit is just $9,000, and there are some areas of Detroit where you can still buy a house for $100.

#11 There are more than 85,000 streetlights in Detroit, but thieves have stripped so much copper wiring out of the lights that more than half of them are not working.

#12 Mayor Bing has announced a plan to reduce the number of streetlights in the city of Detroit to just 46,000.

#13 According to one very shocking report, 47 percent of all people living in the city of Detroit are functionally illiterate at this point..

#14 The murder rate in Detroit is 11 times higher than it is in New York City.

#15 There were 377 homicides in Detroit in 2011.  In 2012, that number rose to 411.

#16 Justifiable homicide in Detroit rose by an astounding 79 percent during 2011.

#17 In one recent year, the rate of self-defense killings in the city of Detroit was 2200% above the national average.

#18 Ten years ago, there were approximately 5,000 police officers in the city of Detroit.  Today, there are only about 2,500 and another 100 are scheduled to be eliminated from the force soon.

#19 Due to budget cutbacks, most police stations in Detroit are now closed to the public for 16 hours a day.

#20 Crime has gotten so bad in Detroit that even the police are are telling people to "enter Detroit at your own risk".

#21 At one point, 100 bus drivers in Detroit refused to drive their routes because they were afraid of being attacked out on the streets in broad daylight.  The head of the bus drivers union, Henry Gaffney, said that the drivers were literally "scared for their lives"....

    “Our drivers are scared, they’re scared for their lives. This has been an ongoing situation about security. I think yesterday kind of just topped it off, when one of my drivers was beat up by some teenagers down in the middle of Rosa Parks and it took the police almost 30 minutes to get there, in downtown Detroit,” said Gaffney.

#22 There have been reports that gangs of young men with AK-47s have been terrorizing gas stations all over Detroit.

#23 Detroit was once known for making some of the greatest cars in the world.  Now, it is known around the world as a dumping ground for the dead...

    From the street, the two decomposing bodies were nearly invisible, concealed in an overgrown lot alongside worn-out car tires and a moldy sofa. The teenagers had been shot, stripped to their underwear and left on a deserted block.

    They were just the latest victims of foul play whose remains went undiscovered for days after being hidden deep inside Detroit's vast urban wilderness -- a crumbling wasteland rarely visited by outsiders and infrequently patrolled by police.

#24 Detroit's public schools are an absolute nightmare.  The following is from one of my readers that actually attended one of the "best" public schools in Detroit...

    The school was a new seven story building just a couple of years old. The bathrooms would often lack toilet paper & soap beyond the second floor (the main floor), the bathroom sinks would often not work. The water fountains on north side of the building on from the third floor & up did not work. The elevators would constantly break down. I even got stuck on the elevator before. I almost tripped down a half a flight of stairs because the elastic seal (it was the metal bar at the front of a treader of I don't know the name of it.) the stairs was not properly installed.

    Students would often have sex on the stairs & throughout the school. Parents actually called the school many times & reported kids having sex on the stairs because all of them had glass windows 270 degrees.

Even over in Europe they write stories about the dramatic decline of Detroit.  For example, the following is how one British reporter described his visit to Detroit...

    Much of Detroit is horribly dangerous for its own residents, who in many cases only stay because they have nowhere else to go. Property crime is double the American average, violent crime triple. The isolated, peeling homes, the flooded roads, the clunky, rusted old cars and the neglected front yards amid trees and groin-high grassland make you think you are in rural Alabama, not in one of the greatest industrial cities that ever existed.

For those that want to read even more about the horrifying downfall of Detroit, there are some amazing charts that graphically show the decline of Detroit right here.

So what is the solution?

How can we fix Detroit?

Well, why don't we just build a monorail!  Of course that sounds ridiculous, but the federal government has actually committed $25 million to construct "a streetcar line" that nobody really wants and that very few people would probably actually use.  Perhaps they could be excused for wasting so much money on a bad idea if there had not already been 24 failed attempts to develop a successful public transit system in Detroit over the past four decades.

Well, why don't we just build a bunch of theme parks instead?  After all, tourists would just flock to Detroit, right?

It has been suggested that Detroit would be ideal for an "automotive theme park", and there is actually one group of investors that wants to turn some of the worst areas of Detroit into a "zombie theme park".

What will they think of next?

Actually, a much better idea would have been to not allow millions of our good paying manufacturing jobs to be shipped to the other side of the world, but it is too late for that at this point.

But once again, please do not look down on the city of Detroit.  Instead, let the city of Detroit serve as a warning for the rest of us.

The truth is that the entire U.S. economy is in an advanced state of decline...

-The percentage of the civilian labor force in the United States that is employed has been steadily declining every single year since 2006.

-An astounding 53 percent of all American workers make less than $30,000 a year.

-Amazingly, there are hundreds of thousands of Americans with either Master's degrees or Ph.D.s that are enrolled in the food stamp program at this point.

We are a nation that consumes far more wealth than we produce, we are a nation that is constantly bleeding jobs, businesses and wealth, and we are a nation that is going deeper into debt with each passing day.

Yes, Detroit may have gone over the edge into economic oblivion first, but the rest of the nation is steamrolling down the exact same path that Detroit has gone.

Is it too late for us to change direction?

Please feel free to share your thoughts on that question by leaving a comment below...

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/bankrupt-decaying-and-nearly-dead-24-facts-about-the-city-of-detroit-that-will-shock-you
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« Reply #51 on: February 11, 2013, 07:27:54 am »

Show This To Anyone That Believes That “Things Are Getting Better” In America

How can anyone not see that the U.S. economy is collapsing all around us?  It just astounds me when people try to tell me that "everything is just fine" and that "things are getting better" in America.  Are there people out there that are really that blind?  If you want to see the economic collapse, just open up your eyes and look around you.  By almost every economic and financial measure, the U.S. economy has been steadily declining for many years.  But most Americans are so tied into "the matrix" that they can only understand the cheerful propaganda that is endlessly being spoon-fed to them by the mainstream media.  As I have said so many times, the economic collapse is not a single event.  The economic collapse has been happening, it is is happening right now, and it will continue to happen.  Yes, there will be times when our decline will be punctuated by moments of great crisis, but that will be the exception rather than the rule.  A lot of people that write about "the economic collapse" hype it up as if it will be some huge "event" that will happen very rapidly and then once it is all over we will rebuild.  Unfortunately, that is not how the real world works.  We are living in the greatest debt bubble in the history of the world, and once it completely bursts there will be no going back to how things were before.  Right now, we are living in a "credit card economy".  As long as we can keep borrowing more money, most people think that things are just fine.  But anyone that has lived on credit cards knows that eventually there comes a point when the game is over, and we are rapidly approaching that point as a nation.

Have you ever been there?  Have you ever desperately hoped that you could just get one more credit card or one more loan so that you could keep things going?

At first, living on credit can be a lot of fun.  You can live a much higher standard of living than you otherwise would be able to.

But inevitably a day of reckoning comes.

If the federal government and the American people were forced at this moment to live within their means, the U.S. economy would immediately plunge into a depression.

That is a 100% rock solid guarantee.

But our politicians and the mainstream media continue to perpetuate the fiction that we can live in this credit card economic fantasy land indefinitely.

And most Americans could not care less about the future.  As long as "things are good" today, they don't really think much about what the future will hold.

As a result of our very foolish short-term thinking, we have now run up a national debt of 16.4 trillion dollars.  It is the largest debt in the history of the world, and it has gotten more than 23 times larger since Jimmy Carter first entered the White House.

The chart that you see below is a recipe for national financial suicide...

rest: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/show-this-to-anyone-that-believes-that-things-are-getting-better-in-america
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« Reply #52 on: February 17, 2013, 03:59:37 am »

Copper bandits rob Detroit freeways of light

'For every move we make, the thieves come up with a counter-move'


The Michigan Department of Transportation says one-fifth of the lights along freeways in Metro Detroit aren’t working — and copper thieves are mainly to blame.

MDOT spokesman Rob Morosi said roughly 20 percent of the lights on poles and beneath overpasses on freeways in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb and St. Clair counties are dark.

Read the full story › http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2013/02/15/left-in-the-dark-copper-thieves-rob-detroit-freeways-of-light/

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« Reply #53 on: February 22, 2013, 09:11:58 pm »

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/02/22/17058747-looking-for-a-bad-time-visit-americas-saddest-most-miserable-cities?lite

2/22/13

Looking for a bad time? Visit America's 'saddest,' 'most miserable' cities

Michigan has a serious PR problem on its hands, if you believe two studies this week that ranked its cities among the saddest, most depressed in America.

Forbes magazine hit the state with a top two finish Friday in its annual rankings of the "most miserable" cities in the U.S. Detroit ranked No. 1. Flint ranked No. 2.
 
Forbes' rankings are based mainly on economic factors, including unemployment, foreclosures, income and property taxes and home prices, in addition to violent crime. Detroit ranked high on violent crime and the rate at which home prices are falling.

"Right now, it's all about survival," Mayor Dave Bing told Forbes.

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« Reply #54 on: March 01, 2013, 03:57:10 pm »

http://www.nbcnews.com/business/economywatch/michigans-governor-declares-detroit-state-financial-emergency-1C8638601#/business/economywatch/michigans-governor-declares-detroit-state-financial-emergency-1C8638601

Michigan's governor declares Detroit in state of financial emergency

3/1/13
Governor Rick Snyder of Michigan on Friday declared a fiscal state of emergency in Detroit in a move that could lead to the appointment of a financial manager who could file for the largest municipal bankruptcy ever.

Snyder's decision allows the city a 10-day grace period to formulate a plan to fix its finances before the governor reconsiders appointing an emergency manager who would likely drastically reduce services.

The Republican governor said he had identified a top candidate for the position, but he declined to name the person.

"I believe it's appropriate to declare the city of Detroit in financial emergency," Snyder said at a forum in Detroit.

Snyder said he agreed with a Feb. 19 report by a six-member team of experts that concluded Michigan's largest city is in dire financial shape and a plan put in place last April to aid Detroit was not sufficiently working.

The expert team Snyder assembled in December did not officially recommend the appointment of an emergency financial manager, leaving that decision up to the governor.

Detroit officials now have 10 days to request a hearing with the governor about his determination.

After the hearing or the expiration of the 10 days in the case of no hearing, the governor confirms or revokes his determination. A confirmation will assign management of Detroit's fiscal emergency to a Local Emergency Financial Assistance Loan Board composed of three state officials, including the treasurer, who are all Snyder appointees. That board would also appoint a manager for the city, under the current state law.

Detroit officials also will have the ability to appeal the fiscal emergency determination in state court. But that move would likely not delay the appointment of a manager, who could ultimately recommend the city file for bankruptcy. A Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy by Detroit would be the largest ever in the United States.

Detroit has faced the steepest population decline of any American city in recent decades. Once the fifth largest U.S. city that shone as the birthplace of the U.S. automotive industry and Motown music, it now ranks 18th with about 700,000 people - after suffering a 25 percent decline in population between 2000 and 2010.

With the exodus of residents and jobs as the auto industry contracted, the city has suffered from declining tax revenue and rising crime while saddled with the infrastructure and labor costs of a bygone era.

An emergency financial manager for Detroit would have the power to develop a financial plan, revise or reject budgets, consolidate departments, enter into service contracts with other local governments, reduce or eliminate the salaries of elected officials, sell eligible city assets, lay off workers and renegotiate labor contracts. The manager cannot abrogate labor contracts or impose taxes without voter approval under the state's 1990 law.

A new Michigan law that takes effect March 28 will allow existing emergency financial managers to remain in place and will give them additional powers, including the ability to revise or terminate collective bargaining agreements.

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« Reply #55 on: March 11, 2013, 04:08:08 am »

Suburbs secede from Atlanta
'Detroit of the South' bludgeoned by troubles


As Detroit – beset by violence, debt and social woes – prepares to undergo a historic takeover by the Michigan state government, the city of Atlanta could be sliding toward a similar fate.

Some are quietly wondering whether Atlanta is in danger of becoming “the Detroit of the South.”

The city has experienced an ongoing succession of government scandals, ranging from a massive cheating racket to corruption, bribery, school-board incompetence and now the potential loss of accreditation for the local DeKalb County school system.

For several years, problems of this sort have fueled political reforms, including the creation of new cities in northern Atlanta suburbs. Due to the intensification of corruption scandals in DeKalb, some state-level reform proposals could become national news very soon.

‘Super-white majority’ cities

As a result of the unsavory politics in urban Atlanta, northern suburban communities acted to distance themselves. Beginning in 2005, many communities began the process of incorporating into cities.

Thus far, Milton, Sandy Springs, Brookhaven, Dunwoody, Chattahoochee Hills and Johns Creek have done so.

These cities, after breaking away politically from urban Atlanta, have become so successful that a libertarian think tank, the Reason Foundation, has featured Sandy Springs as a model of effective government. The Economist has also applauded the northern Atlanta cities for solving the problem of unfunded government pension liability and avoiding the bankruptcy that looms over some urban areas. The new cities may soon be able to create their own school districts, which would free them even further from the issues besetting Atlanta.

While incorporation has been popular with residents of the new cities, not all of Atlanta is as satisfied. The Georgia Legislative Black Caucus filed a lawsuit in 2011 to dissolve the new cities, claiming they were a “super-white majority” and diluting the voting power of minorities.

A key leader in the black community and a driving force in support of the lawsuit, who wishes to remain anonymous, bemoaned the “disturbing tendency of black electorates to not elect the smartest and brightest, or even the cleverest.”

Nonetheless, he believes that there is a social contract between the northern and southern parts of the county.

“So when you allow powerful groups of citizens to opt out of a social contract, and form their own, it may benefit the group opting out, but it hurts the larger collective,” he said.

The lawsuit would have canceled incorporation and tied the cities back into the very county that they purposefully left.

State Rep. Lynne Riley, a Republican who represents one of the new cities, called the lawsuit “frivilous” and “disrespectful to the citizens of these cities who are most satisfied with their government.”

The federal trial court rejected the lawsuit, and the court of appeals affirmed the dismissal. However, an attorney for the Black Caucus plans to file an amended lawsuit.

Meanwhile, the same concerns that spurred incorporation continue to mount.

Failing schools

DeKalb County contributed to what the New York Times called “the biggest standardized test cheating scandal in the country’s history” in 2011.

Now, the county is faced with losing its regional accreditation. Losing regional accreditation is, by any objective measure, a devastating indictment of a school board, with severe consequences for students and families within the district.

When nearby Clayton County, Ga., lost its regional accreditation in 2008, it was the first school system in the country to do so in 40 years.

The result in Clayton, according to the Pew Foundation, was that thousands of students left county schools, the district lost millions of dollars and hundreds of teachers were fired.

In response to the Clayton County crisis, after witnessing the fallout and the harm to the state’s reputation, the legislature acted to prevent a repeat. In 2011, the Georgia legislature essentially gave the governor authority to remove board of education members when a district was placed on probation by the accreditation agency.

Last December, DeKalb was placed on probation. Then, in January, the governor of Georgia used his new authority and removed six members of the nine-member DeKalb Board of Education.

This year, well after the accreditation issue broke open, DeKalb school board elections were held. Four of nine board members were up for reelection.  Voters in one of the four districts returned their incumbent board member for another term, despite knowing that accreditation was at risk.

This week, a federal judge sided with the governor and agreed that the six suspended board members can be replaced. The decision places the dispute into the Georgia Supreme Court’s purview.

As the issue looms, the mere mention of losing accreditation has impacted the housing market in DeKalb, with at least one potential buyer directing his realtor not to search for homes in the county.

School leadership

Recently, at the helm of the DeKalb school system stood Crawford Lewis. The former superintendent has been indicted on racketeering charges.

Along with several of his associates, Lewis is accused by the DeKalb DA of fraud, theft by a government employee, bribery and a web of racketeering. The charges arose out of Lewis’ practice of steering lucrative government contracts toward favored companies.

According to the indictment, Lewis also used government funds to pay for a hotel room, which he used as the venue for an affair. Lewis had this affair with a person who held the position of “Executive Director of the Office of School Improvement.”

One of the numerous complaints about the DeKalb school board was that it voted to pay for Lewis’ legal defense. There had been a $100,000 cap on the costs allowed for legal defense, but the school board waived it for Lewis’ benefit.

The CEO in charge

At the very top, the head of DeKalb’s government is the position of CEO. The current CEO, Burrell Ellis, is being investigated for a list of concerns, including alleged bid rigging. Police searched Ellis’s home and office recently, and local news outlets report that while no charges have been filed, search warrants are reportedly aimed toward potential extortion, bribery, theft, conspiracy, and wire fraud in connection with private vendors who contract with the county.

Most recently, Ellis sought approval from the county ethics board to establish a legal defense fund to benefit himself. The board rebuffed the request.

A corrupt school board becomes a civil rights issue

Instead of being treated as a story about rampant, inexcusable corruption, the school board fiasco has morphed into a civil rights issue. Atlanta’s NBC affiliate reports that the Georgia NAACP “accused Republican Governor Nathan Deal of being part of an alleged conspiracy to get rid of black office holders and deprive black voters of their rights.”

State Rep. Tyrone Books pointed out that criticism of the governor needed to include a word about black politicians who supported the governor’s removal authority.

“How can we complain about him when we have black folks standing there embracing the removal of black officials?” asked Brooks, D-Atlanta.

The state legislature is trying to prevent public funds from being used in the legal defense of the ousted board members. Because the ousted board members see their positions as a civil rights entitlement, the attorney’s fees required for their defense will quickly rise, unless legislation puts an end to the entitlement.

One of the suspended board members, Eugene Walker, responded to the judge’s ruling with a familiar appeal: “Minorities should not feel secure if contrived allegations from anonymous sources with hidden agendas can go to private agencies and to have their civil rights stolen away.”

DeKalb has changed from majority white to majority black over the last several decades. As the Atlanta Journal Constitution gingerly put it: “The county’s transition from majority white to majority minority was politically rocky .”

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/03/suburbs-secede-from-atlanta/#IT2hczfgmB1X2Pgm.99


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Kilika
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« Reply #56 on: March 11, 2013, 05:47:46 am »

And just where did all those new residents in the South, including Atlanta, come from? The north, places like Detroit and other cities that are being run into the ground and abandoned. Those thugs have just moved south, and now the same thing is happening there in Atlanta and elsewhere.
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« Reply #57 on: March 11, 2013, 09:51:46 am »

Uhm...isn't Atlanta the same city that just proposed a $1b stadium deal with their NFL Falcons? Somehow they're coming up with all this money for a FOOTBALL STADIUM while their city is having so many problems?

Sometimes things can be just mind-boggling, to say the least!
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Kilika
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« Reply #58 on: March 11, 2013, 06:10:05 pm »

Yep, they want to build a stadium while their city crumbles around them.
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« Reply #59 on: March 12, 2013, 05:51:34 am »

Private Prisons: The More Americans They Put Behind Bars The More Money They Make

How would you describe an industry that wants to put more Americans in prison and keep them there longer so that it can make more money?  In America today, approximately 130,000 people are locked up in private prisons that are being run by for-profit companies, and that number is growing very rapidly.  Overall, the U.S. has approximately 25 percent of the entire global prison population even though it only has 5 percent of the total global population.  The United States has the highest incarceration rate on the entire globe by far, and no nation in the history of the world has ever locked up more of its own citizens than we have.  Are we really such a cesspool of filth and decay that we need to lock up so many of our own people?  Or are there some other factors at work?  Could part of the problem be that we have allowed companies to lock up men and women in cages for profit?  The two largest private prison companies combined to bring in close to $3,000,000,000 in revenue in 2010, and the largest private prison companies have spent tens of millions of dollars on lobbying and campaign contributions over the past decade.  Putting Americans behind bars has become very big business, and those companies have been given a perverse incentive to push for even more Americans to be locked up.  It is a system that is absolutely teeming with corruption, and it is going to get a lot worse unless someone does something about it.

One of the keys to success in the private prison business it to get politicians to vote your way.  That is why the big private prison companies spend so much money on lobbying and campaign contributions.  The following is an excerpt from a report put out by the Justice Policy Institute entitled "Gaming the System: How the Political Strategies of Private Prison Companies Promote Ineffective Incarceration Policies"...

For-profit private prison companies primarily use three strategies to influence policy: lobbying, direct campaign contributions, and building relationships, networks, and associations.

Over the years, these political strategies have allowed private prison companies to promote policies that lead to higher rates of incarceration and thus greater profit margins for their company. In particular, private prison companies have had either influence over or helped to draft model legislation such as "three-strikes" and "truth-in-sentencing" laws, both of which have driven up incarceration rates and ultimately created more opportunities for private prison companies to bid on contracts to increase revenues.
If you can believe it, three of the largest private prison companies have spent approximately $45,000,000 combined on lobbying and campaign contributions over the past decade.

Would they be spending so much money if those companies did not believe that it was getting results?

Just look at what has happened to the U.S. prison population over the past several decades.  Prior to 1980, there were virtually no private prisons in the United States.  But since that time, we have seen the overall prison population and the private prison population absolutely explode.

For example, between 1990 and 2009 the number of Americans in private prisons grew by about 1600 percent.

Overall, the U.S. prison population more than quadrupled between 1980 and 2007.

So something has definitely changed.

Not that it is wrong to put people in prison when they commit crimes.  Of course not.  And right now violent crime is rapidly rising in many of our largest cities.  When people commit violent crimes they need to be removed from the streets.

But when you put those criminals into the hands of private companies that are just in it to make a buck, the potential for abuse is enormous.

For example, when auditors visited one private prison in Texas, they "got so much fecal matter on their shoes they had to wipe their feet on the grass outside."

The prisoners were literally living in their own manure.

How would you feel if a member of your own family was locked up in such a facility?

And the truth is that there seem to be endless stories of abuse in private prisons.  One private prison company reportedly charges inmates $5.00 a minute to make phone calls but only pays them $1.00 a day to work...

Last year the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), the nation’s largest private prison company, received $74 million of taxpayers’ money to run immigration detention centers. Their largest facility in Lumpkin, Georgia, receives $200 a night for each of the 2,000 detainees it holds, and rakes in yearly profits between $35 million and $50 million.

Prisoners held in this remote facility depend on the prison’s phones to communicate with their lawyers and loved ones. Exploiting inmates’ need, CCA charges detainees here $5 per minute to make phone calls. Yet the prison only pays inmates who work at the facility $1 a day. At that rate, it would take five days to pay for just one minute.
Speaking of work, private prisons have found that exploiting their inmates as a source of slave labor can be extraordinarily profitable.  Today, private prisons are stealing jobs from ordinary American workers in a whole host of industries.  The following is from an article by Vicky Pelaez...

According to the Left Business Observer, the federal prison industry produces 100% of all military helmets, ammunition belts, bullet-proof vests, ID tags, shirts, pants, tents, bags, and canteens. Along with war supplies, prison workers supply 98% of the entire market for equipment assembly services; 93% of paints and paintbrushes; 92% of stove assembly; 46% of body armor; 36% of home appliances; 30% of headphones/microphones/speakers; and 21% of office furniture. Airplane parts, medical supplies, and much more: prisoners are even raising seeing-eye dogs for blind people.
And many of the largest corporations in America have rushed in to take advantage of this pool of very cheap slave labor.  Just check out some of the big names that have been exploiting prison labor...

At least 37 states have legalized the contracting of prison labor by private corporations that mount their operations inside state prisons. The list of such companies contains the cream of U.S. corporate society: IBM, Boeing, Motorola, Microsoft, AT&T, Wireless, Texas Instrument, Dell, Compaq, Honeywell, Hewlett-Packard, Nortel, Lucent Technologies, 3Com, Intel, Northern Telecom, TWA, Nordstrom’s, Revlon, Macy’s, Pierre Cardin, Target Stores, and many more. All of these businesses are excited about the economic boom generation by prison labor. Just between 1980 and 1994, profits went up from $392 million to $1.31 billion. Inmates in state penitentiaries generally receive the minimum wage for their work, but not all; in Colorado, they get about $2 per hour, well under the minimum. And in privately-run prisons, they receive as little as 17 cents per hour for a maximum of six hours a day, the equivalent of $20 per month. The highest-paying private prison is CCA in Tennessee, where prisoners receive 50 cents per hour for what they call “highly skilled positions.” At those rates, it is no surprise that inmates find the pay in federal prisons to be very generous. There, they can earn $1.25 an hour and work eight hours a day, and sometimes overtime. They can send home $200-$300 per month.
But of course some of the biggest profits for private prisons come from detaining young people.  Today, private prison companies operate more than 50 percent of all "youth correctional facilities" in the United States.

And sometimes judges have even been bribed by these companies to sentence kids to very harsh sentences and to send them to their facilities.  The following is from a report about two judges in Pennsylvania that were recently convicted for taking money to send kids to private prisons...

Michael Conahan, a former jurist in Luzerne County, was sentenced on Friday to 210 months in custody by Senior U.S. District Court Judge Edwin M. Kosik II. Conahan was also ordered to pay $874,000 in restitution. [...] As Main Justice reported in August, Ciavarella, former president judge of the Court of Common Pleas and former judge of the Juvenile Court for Luzerne County, was sentenced to 28 years in prison and ordered to make restitution of $965,930. [...]

Conahan’s role in the “cash for kids” scheme was to order the closing of a county-run detention center, clearing the way for Ciavarella, once known as a strict “law and order” judge, to send young offenders to private facilities. This arrangement worked out well for Ciavarella and Conahan, as well as the builder of the facilities and a developer, who pleaded guilty to lesser charges.

The arrangement didn’t work out so well for the young offenders, some of them sent away for offenses that were little more than pranks and would have merited probation, or perhaps just scoldings, if the judges had tried to live up to their oaths.
Are you starting to see why private prisons are such a problem?

Hundreds of kids had their lives permanently altered by those corrupt judges.

When you allow people to make money by locking other people up in cages, you are just asking for trouble.

The more Americans they put behind bars, the more money these private prisons make.  It is a system that needs to be brought to an end.

So what do you think?

Do you believe that private prisons are a good idea or a bad idea?

Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below...

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/private-prisons-the-more-americans-they-put-behind-bars-the-more-money-they-make
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