Friday, March 06, 2009

Detroit City Council, Racist AND Stupid

Getting rid of Kwame certainly didn't end the hijinks in Detroit. We still have the City Council. The current issue is Cobo Hall and it's future. Cobo is the main convention center in Detroit, and home of the North American Auto Show; a show that we are in jeopardy of losing to Chicago if the building isn't both enlarged and improved. From

Cobo Hall costs the city of Detroit $15 million a year. The rundown building in the heart of the city needs major repairs. The state has offered $20 million in upfront cash to buy Cobo and put it in the hands of a regional authority -- an authority structured so that it would give the Detroit representative veto power over any decisions. The deal would finance a $288 million renovation and expansion of the crumbling structure.

All the deal needed to become official was approval from the Detroit City Council. Yet Tuesday, despite a push from Mayor Kenneth Cockrel and support from mayoral candidate David Bing, the council, in an act of city-centric chauvinism, voted 5-3 to turn it down.

Why did they vote it down? Because, you see, the racist city council wants to keep suburbans (you can interpret that as "white folks") from controlling their "jewel." Never mind that the jewel has bled money from the city for years. Never mind that Detroit doesn't have the money to fix it up, and will lose the auto show. I say we rename Cobo Hall the "Monica Conyers Mausoleum" should this come to pass.

Mayor Ken Cockrel Jr. vetoed the City Council's actions, but Monica isn't done yet. She plans to seek legal action to stop Cockrel's action. Lovely. But, it gets better:

And there was Barbara-Rose Collins loudly claiming a conspiracy in a deal to transfer ownership of Cobo Center to a five-member regional authority with representatives from the state, the city and Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.

She cried foul at Detroit losing ownership of anything. But someone must have forgotten to explain to her that Detroit can no longer afford to run Cobo because:

1) The city cannot afford the $15 million in annual maintenance fees.

2) The city cannot afford to complete renovations necessary to keep the North American International Auto Show and the 16,000 jobs it brings.

Collins, on a roll, invoked America's past tradition of manifest destiny, saying that "European rulers have traditionally taken what they wanted from other people, be they white, be they black or be they brown.

"No one is taking anything!" she said. Then the room broke into song.

"Onward, Christian soldiers

Marching on to war ... "

Stupid is as stupid does. Plato's philosophy in action in Detroit.