Is that eventually, one way or another, their problems become our problems.
Imploding Cities Will Drag All of Us Down — Even if You Don’t Live Anywhere Near One
There is so much wrong with America’s cities, it’s hard to see why any contributing member of society would live and/or work in one of them. Some of the issues arise from far-Left local governance while others are generated by more widespread Leftist policy. These are coupled with an organic workforce evolution, as the United States transitions from an industry-based to an information-based economy. The result is urban areas caught in a downward spiral — and, as with any sinking vessel, threatening to suck everyone nearby down with them.
First, a quick refresher on the compounding problems of urban areas. Chief among them is that big cities are dark blue, and thus they’ve become crucibles of Left-wing policy failure. Uncontrolled crime, roving drug and mental-illness zombies, and swarms of sanctuary-recipient asylum scammers are crowding out reasonable people and businesses. The normals who remain to take advantage of access to cultural events (such as they are) and restaurant variety are also subject to totalitarian social controls and two-tiered justice systems that punish them when they fight back against criminals. But no matter how desperate the situation becomes, city councils can be counted on to double down on woke policies, then double down again.
Businesses are fleeing. In the ones that remain, shopping for basic goods has become a frustrating exercise in waiting for an associate to unlock the case so you can grab a razor and some toothpaste. Add in today’s high interest rates, which make owning and running a business prohibitively expensive, and the writing is on the wall. PJ Media colleague Rick Moran reported last month that large San Francisco commercial businesses, like hotels and malls, are simply walking away from their obligations, handing the keys to the banks with which their real estate is financed. Concurrently, major retailers are declining to renew leases and are simply closing their doors, unable to break even in an atmosphere where retail theft is encouraged. This process is occurring to some degree in major cities across the country.
While we conservatives point and laugh at the plight of woke cities from the comfort and safety of our suburban and rural homes, we may want to take a moment to consider a sobering issue. The effects of the imminent collapse of the commercial urban real estate market will ripple out across the financial sector and affect just about everyone in one way or another.
Remember the mortgage-backed securities crisis in 2008? And how, even if you didn’t default on your mortgage or didn’t even own a house, the entire economy tipped into what the hyperbolic media tagged “The Great Recession” and we all suffered? So, this would be kind of like that, except the problem will start with a commercial real estate collapse.
Which collapse is happening even as we speak (so to, umm, speak). Real Americans who aren’t shitty-city dwellers have no place they can reasonably expect to find succor, either:
Don’t start daydreaming that we’ll have a Republican president by then who will refuse to bail out imploding cities, either. When you realize that everyone’s pensions are involved, you understand that not bailing out these banks and cities was never going to be an option. They have us over a barrel. So we can expect a cool trillion or two to flow from Big G’s coffers. This, while we are still reeling from the inflation and high interest rates from the last crisis, the Great COVID Overreaction Rescue Plan.
There is much to recommend city life: museums, entertainment, fine dining, varied shopping and cultural experiences, travel hubs, and excellent medical care are all steps away. A large segment of the population prefers such a stimulating and convenient lifestyle, and they would happily live in cities regardless of whether they worked at home. Enterprising landlords could convert less-used office space to living space and continue to run a profitable business. But so long as Soros DAs, activists, and city councilors keep making urban life unlivable, America’s cities will continue to circle the drain. And we’re all going to get sucked down with them.
Too bad, that, and no, it ain’t really fair. It’d be all too easy to assume that, what with the industry and manufacturing that for many years was centered in our large cities now gone the way of the dodo, the cities’ influence over and ability to affect the outlying areas might have diminished a great deal, but it just isn’t the case. As ever-larger numbers of those in a position to do so flee the urban shithole-zones, the rest of us Flyover-Country types will almost certainly be feeling the pain too—and the lamentable tendency of those big-city refugees to vote for the exact same things that ruined their own befouled nests* is only the beginning of it.