Detroit budget merry-go-round worse than trip to the dentist - My29 WFTC Minneapolis-St. Paul

OFF THE CHAIN EDITORIAL

LeDuff: Detroit budget merry-go-round worse than trip to the dentist

Posted: Updated:
Mayor Dave Bing presents his budget to Detroit City Council. Mayor Dave Bing presents his budget to Detroit City Council.
DETROIT (WJBK) -

I went to the dentist Friday morning and got my tooth drilled.  My head was numb from the Novocain.  I needed a place to hide where nobody would notice.

I found it: Detroit city hall!

What an outrageous piece of numbskull theater was going on there.  Detroit Mayor Dave Bing presented his budget to the city council.  He recommended more cops, more paramedics and less city council.  He should have done that when he still had power.

But remember the mayor and the council have been neutered under Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr.  They can't even use the can without his permission, much less make a budget. 

It was meaningless.  They were faking it.  And the public knew it.  By my count only 14 citizens showed up.  On the other hand there were 43 politicos and 20 media types.  So tell me who's smarter?

How much did we spend on lights and toilet paper and bottled water for this fiasco?  And how come no popcorn?

The scene was like an election in the Soviet Union, where members of the Politburo got elected with 102 percent of the vote but wielded no power.  The media dutifully reported the results as though they were important in some way.  And down below, in the streets, the people suffered.

Hey! A ruble's a ruble.

Orr's spokesman told me in the hallway that the Unelected Man in Charge had no input into Bing's bogus budget document whatsoever.

What we did learn was Detroit's deficit will climb to nearly $400 million by June.  Or as Jack Martin, Bing's handpicked $220,000-a-year chief financial officer put it: "The deficit is increasing at a decreasing rate."

What?

Why does he still have a job?  Why do any of them?

I'm never going back.  At least the dentist numbs you up.

  • Charlie LeDuffCharlie LeDuffMore>>

  • LeDuff: Where is the respect for the real hosts of the Super Bowl?

    LeDuff: Where is the respect for the real hosts of the Super Bowl?

    Super Bowl XLVIII is in New York.  Well, not exactly.  The Super Bowl's host city is actually East Rutherford, N.J.  Sometimes it's hard to get respect in America if you're not from places like NYC or LA.
    Super Bowl XLVIII is in New York.  Well, not exactly.  The Super Bowl's host city is actually East Rutherford, N.J.  Sometimes it's hard to get respect in America if you're not from places like Los Angeles., Washington, D.C. or New York.  If you live in New Jersey, you're in the shadow of the Big Apple.
  • Ground Zero of the North Dakota Oil Boom

    Ground Zero of the North Dakota Oil Boom

    Friday, March 7 2014 12:11 PM EST2014-03-07 17:11:13 GMT
    In another installment of The Americans with Charlie LeDuff, Charlie and his crew head to Williston, North Dakota, where the oil boom is making the small town the epicenter of opportunity and big city problems.
    Tens of thousands of Americans are drifting into places like Williston, North Dakota where the oil boom is making the small town the epicenter of opportunity.

    If you're willing to work 100 hours a week you could make $100,000 in a year.  Along with opportunity there are problems and a changing landscape to small town life that's as harsh as winter on the northern planes.
  • LeDuff: Detroit's bankruptcy is helping police do their jobs

    LeDuff: Detroit's bankruptcy is helping police do their jobs

    Friday, March 7 2014 11:46 AM EST2014-03-07 16:46:27 GMT
    Detroit police are doing better because less money is being paid to creditors and more is being invested in police services. Go on an exclusive ride to see how the fight on crime is getting new support.
    Detroit is a godforsaken place.  Everyone knows that.  Detroit is a mess, no doubt. Here's the thing: some of the factors that put Detroit $18 billion in debt could be factors in your town. Cities all over the country are struggling to pay for health care and retiree pensions. They're seeing revenues from property taxes and sales taxes drop as they try to pay for expensive projects that were approved before the recession.
  • Charlie LeDuff: Off The ChainCharlie LeDuff: Off The ChainMore>>

  • Sayonara Bingaling

    Sayonara Bingaling

    Friday, December 13 2013 7:35 PM EST2013-12-14 00:35:18 GMT
    LeDuff: From my perch, I can say Bing was a mayor who preferred to get his nails polished but never dirty.
    LeDuff: From my perch, I can say Bing was a mayor who preferred to get his nails polished but never dirty.
  • LeDuff goes inside massive Detroit Police raid

    LeDuff goes inside massive Detroit Police raid

    Tuesday, December 3 2013 7:57 PM EST2013-12-04 00:57:27 GMT
    On Tuesday, police in Detroit teamed up with Michigan State Police and federal law enforcement officers to conduct a massive raid the size of a city block.
    On Tuesday, police in Detroit teamed up with Michigan State Police and federal law enforcement officers to conduct a massive raid the size of a city block.
  • Is this the crest of dawn in this thing we call a city?

    Is this the crest of dawn in this thing we call a city?

    Friday, November 8 2013 6:12 PM EST2013-11-08 23:12:53 GMT
    LeDuff: Darkness Rules. And then on a corner of a street called Crusade, a case of what should be considered normal becomes the extraordinary:a streetlight gets repaired. And the curtains get pulled back from the iron door.
    LeDuff: Darkness Rules. And then on a corner of a street called Crusade, a case of what should be considered normal becomes the extraordinary: a streetlight gets repaired. And the curtains get pulled back from the iron door.
Powered by WorldNow

WFTC-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices