The bankruptcy of Detroit, which has been a widely appreciated fact for some time now, has now become sanctioned by law. As Reuters reports:
Detroit is eligible for bankruptcy protection, a U.S. judge ruled on Tuesday after determining the city is broke and had too many creditors to make negotiations over more than $18 billion in city debts and other obligations possible.
Those “obligations” include the pensions that were promised municipal employees who are now retired and had assumed that promises made by the city were good.
The story is sad and infuriating. The city was driven to this condition by corrupt, one-party rule that made extravagant promises (when it was wasn’t busy stealing) it never had the ability – and, perhaps, the intention – of keeping.
The ruling could be seen as an opportunity and license to bail in cities that also inherited the fruits of maladministration and the buying of votes with public money.
It does, however, seem like only yesterday that President Obama was saying that he “refused” to let the Motor City go bankrupt. Must have been Romney, then, who did it.