The answer: Not necessarily who you think.
The Motor City once had over 1.8 million people living within its environs. Now the number making their homes in Detroit as a little over a third of that.
What happened to make large parts of Detroit look like a set from a movie about post-apocalyptic America? There are two groups with whom we must lay the blame for the city's misfortunes: the Democrat political machine and the UAW. There's plenty of blame to go around between these two groups.
The Democrats in power did everything they could to make it less attractive for businesses and residents to stay. The UAW did everything it could to make sure jobs with the Big Three automakers went away. Both groups succeeded beyond their wildest dreams, which is why Detroit is an ongoing economic disaster.
Reading the comments from the editorial linked above is telling as well, with more than a few giving prime examples of the differences between Detroit and some of the surrounding communities. The contrast is striking.
...a lot of the blame goes to a generation of bad management. But the main reason for Detroit's decline is the greed of the industry's main union, the UAW, which priced the Big Three out of the market.
As recently as 2008, GM, Ford and Chrysler paid their employees on average more than $73 an hour in total compensation. The 12 foreign transplants, operating in nonunion states mostly in the South and Midwest, averaged about $42 an hour.
Guess which manufacturers are healthiest and expanding their market today? In 2008, the Big Three still made 59% of all cars in the U.S. But, according to recent estimates, their market share is now 46% — with foreign companies selling the bulk of all U.S. cars. So Detroit's loss has been the South's and Midwest's gain.
Business and neighborhoods are thriving in the outlying towns and cities, with foreign automakers locating technical centers in a number of them. At least they think there's a future near Detroit, even if they're avoiding Detroit itself.
The communities themselves also have the good fortune not to be under the sway of the destructive Democrat political machine that has so damaged Detroit. As one commenter writes:
Of course I have no doubt the Democrats have plans for the still-prosperous communities, making sure they are brought into the leftist fold and turned into dying towns, all in the name of some pie-in-the-sky leftist utopia that will never come to be. They'll play the envy card and the greed card and the racial card in an attempt to bleed those communities dry as well.
Come to Metro-Detroit and see the suburbs with Republicans in charge such as Novi - then see the suburbs with leftists in charge - such as Pontiac. You can literally tell the basket cases from the still-vibrant burbs by their leadership.
Let us hope for the communities sake that they fail.