December 20, 2012 by Wayne Allyn Root
Hello, I’m Wayne Allyn Root for Personal Liberty. First, I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas during these tough and troubled times. Enjoy your family, enjoy the holiday, enjoy the food and thank God we’ve all been blessed to be born in the greatest country in the history of the world.
Unfortunately, a majority of Americans have forgotten what made us great — or they are taking those blessings for granted. Even at Christmastime (perhaps because it’s Christmastime, because it’s a time for prayer and reflection), I think it’s important to remind you what America could become: the collision course toward disaster we are on. That path is so clear, there is no longer a debate. The proof is in. The proof is Detroit.
Detroit is dysfunctional, insolvent and teetering on the verge of bankruptcy. What a surprise.
There are three valuable lessons to be found in Detroit’s decline:
Lesson No. 1: Barack Obama claimed he saved Detroit and the auto industry. He was re-elected based on this claim. Obama was lying; he didn’t “save” anything. He just dumped billions of our taxpayer dollars down a rat hole to buy Democratic votes. Detroit was never going to be saved. Like an out-of-control drug addict, Detroit is a self-destructive spending addict headed for a tragic ending. Obama only postponed the inevitable and bought votes by using your children’s and grandchildren’s money. They’ll be paying the interest on this debt 50 years from now, and they won’t even get a car in the bargain.
Lesson No. 2: Mitt Romney was criticized harshly for saying Obama bought the election with bribes. Did you see the Democratic councilwomen from Detroit saying that the voters of Detroit voted overwhelmingly for Obama, so now he owes them? It sounds like Romney hit the nail on the head. Obama’s voters did indeed vote for the candidate they thought would provide them with the most freebies (bailouts, free contraception, entitlements) and handouts. Here is the irony: This is the exact same mentality that led to the death of Detroit.
Lesson No. 3: Detroit’s demise is America’s future under Obama. Look at the facts. Detroit is a one-party town. For decades, it has been run 100 percent lock, stock and barrel by liberal progressive Democrats — politicians who ruled with the exact same agenda and policies as Obama. There is no opposition party; there are no checks and balances. Republicans sightings in Detroit are just a rumor from the past — kind of like extinct dinosaurs. So Detroit is the perfect test case for proving what happens when you allow Democrats like Obama to run things their way. For decades, Detroit has followed Obama’s policies of big government always knows best, and massive taxing and spending.
Look at the results. Detroit has $2.5 billion in debt, similar on a local level to Obama’s $16 trillion in Federal government debt. (With unfunded liabilities, it’s actually more than $100 trillion). Due to too many government employees who are paid way too much and allowed to retire way too young with obscene pensions and unaffordable healthcare paid for life, Detroit has $11 billion in government employee retirement obligations — $11 billion in one abandoned city.
Obama’s America, for exactly the same reasons, has several trillions of dollars in unfunded liabilities for government employees. None of these absurd pensions can ever be paid. Detroit has to go bankrupt, and its union contracts will have to be voided in bankruptcy court. There is no way to ever pay them. America has to start thinking about how to do the exact same thing on the Federal level. I used to say, “We are Greece, except 1,000 times bigger.” But now just think of us as Detroit on a much bigger scale.
Detroit’s unemployment rate is sky high — just like Obama’s America. Actually, unemployment is twice as high as the metropolitan area around Detroit. Why? Because many of the towns around Detroit are Republican suburbs run with discipline, fiscal responsibility, lower taxes and lower spending.
Unemployment and bankruptcy aren’t the only results of Obama’s progressive liberal policies. Detroit is the most violent, crime-ridden big city in America — with strict gun control, by the way. Gun control is a joke. The only thing it controls is good people, who are prevented from getting guns to defend themselves. Criminals and murderers run free in “gun-free zones.” That school in Newtown, Conn., was a gun-free zone. Did that designation save those poor kids? What it did was leave the adults in the school unarmed and unable to defend the kids. Is gun control working in Detroit or Cleveland or Chicago or Washington, D.C.? Those cities with the strictest gun laws also happen to lead the Nation in murders, because gun control leaves the good citizens defenseless.
But I digress. The list of Detroit’s damage and dysfunction continues. Detroit has America’s most disgraceful public schools. Two-thirds of Detroit’s street lamps are broken. But why fix them? No one lives there anymore. During the past decade, a quarter of its population has escaped, leaving a literally vacant town. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Detroit’s abandoned lots combined are bigger than the entire city of Paris.
Detroit’s historic Woodmere Cemetery, where the town’s most prominent citizens have been buried since 1867, has been vandalized and desecrated, with desperate thieves stealing copper doors off mausoleums and selling the stolen goods for scrap metal. Folks, this is what Armageddon looks like. This is Greece in America. And this is what happens when Democrats get their way. Detroit is the test case for what America will look like if Obama gets his way. There’s no debate: Detroit’s Democrats got their way. This is the result.
Detroit’s policies are Obama’s dream come true: big government, big taxes, big spending, powerful unions, out-of-control entitlements, big deficit and debt, too many government employees, early retirement, obscene pensions, public schools run by all-powerful teachers’ unions with no competition and no choice for parents, and free healthcare provided by government (for government employees and the poor, which is pretty much the entire Detroit population). Do you want to bet Detroit leads the Nation in the percentage of the population on food stamps? If it doesn’t, it’s only because Obama’s Chicago is in first place.
What is at the center of this tragic American nightmare? Unions. You know, the ones that are Obama’s staunchest supporters and contributors. The same ones that now own him and most progressive liberal politicians. The Wall Street Journal points out that Detroit will spend $160 million this year and $135 million next year on just the retirement benefits of government union employees. That’s after factoring in the mayor’s labor reforms.
Unions bankrupted Detroit — just like unions bankrupted the auto industry. And because they bribed Obama with millions of dollars in campaign donations in 2008, Obama looted the taxpayers to bail out those unions — just so they could continue the scam: paying bloated salaries and obscene pensions to drill rivets into fenders, while the company that pays the bills go deeper and deeper into debt. This is now how America is run, too.
Government employees in Detroit have “defined benefit” pension plans that let them retire in their 40s and then get paid a fortune for 40 or 50 years — twice as long as they worked. This exact insanity is bankrupting cities, counties, States and even our Federal government from sea to shining sea. Keep in mind there are more than 22 million government employees in America. Yes, I said 22 million. All are aiming to retire with big pensions in their 40s; to live 40 more years of leisure built around golf, cruises, early-bird dinners and, of course, voting Democratic on Election Day. And here’s the really scary thing: With medical advancements, they may live 50 or 60 more years. That would add $2 million to their pensions.
This is Obama’s America with everyone working for government or unions or living on entitlements and handouts provided by government. This is what happens when an economy is run based on “The Big Obama Three” principles of “fairness, equality and social justice.” This is what happens when the politicians and bureaucrats of government get together with the unions, entitlement addicts and class-action lawyers to rig the system so that “the rich” and the business owners are the targets to pay for it all.
The final result is just like Greece: The rich and business owners leave as fast as they can. They run for their lives to protect themselves and their families. Recognize the result. I’m not making this stuff up, folks. They did leave Detroit. Everyone with money and smarts left. And they escaped to places like Texas, Nevada, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina and Georgia: States with lower taxes and smaller government. Soon, (just like Detroit) with Obama in charge, people like that — the ones who pay the taxes –are going to leave America.
Detroit is the Obama blueprint. This is how you run a country with no Republican opposition in the way. Detroit is our future laid out before our eyes. Detroit is our canary in the coalmine.
By re-electing Obama, a majority of Americans, after decades of being dumbed down and indoctrinated by members of the teachers’ union in public schools, voted for… Detroit.
Be scared. Be very scared — for your assets, for your income, for your future, for your children and grandchildren. This is the future we have to stop before we all live in a Third World country like Detroit.
I’m Wayne Allyn Root. This Christmas think about about what America used to be about, should be about and must be about in the future if we are going to survive: God, faith, family, capitalism, small business, private-sector taxpayers, economic freedom, free speech, the right to carry a gun to protect ourselves not just from criminals but from government, patriotism and American exceptionalism. We must get back to those values, if we want to save America.
Let’s reflect on those values this Christmas. Kiss your kids for me, and tell them how blessed they are to be Americans. Let’s stand up and defend the real America — not Obama’s America. I’m Wayne Allyn Root for PersonalLiberty.com. Merry Christmas and God bless America.