The Detroit Riot of 2008

I’ve heard all kinds of economic and political pros and cons concerning the potential bailout of the Detroit automakers.


1.  Failure is the price that’s paid by a poorly run company in a free market capitalist system, but these companies and the companies they support are too big to fail. Additionally, millions more will be added to the unemployment lines and a national deficit that already knows no bounds will reach an even greater level of obesity.

2.  Politically, we’re in a void for another couple of months, as all unpleasant, divisive, and crucial decisions (except, of course, bailing out the beloved banking and insurance industries) are put off until Barack’s hand leaves the Bible on inauguration day

The above thinking is all well and good, but the elephant in the room (or donkey, if you like), that isn’t being mentioned, is the high probability of severe civil unrest in Detroit should the car-makers be allowed to collapse under the weight of their own bad decisions.

This may well be followed by the newly unemployed taking to the streets without the structure and salaries that keeps much of the middle class’ discontent at bay. They will no doubt be joined by others who have been left impoverished by having lost jobs in other sectors of the economy, and still others who haven’t yet experienced being in the workforce, and have nothing better to do than embrace the mob mentality and contribute their fair share to the mayhem.

There will be white men, and there will be black men, united by impotent frustration and desperation. No doubt there will be an effort made to pin this unrest, should it come to pass, on an administration not yet in office, although their only sin may well be luckless timing.

This piece is not meant to incite, and it require hubris beyond that which even I possess to think that this lone observer can provoke anything more than a food fight at a birthday party.

It’s meant as a giant heads up, but again, I don’t think I’m the only one seeing this possibility. I think we’ll hear more about it in the days to come, once the ostriches get tired of eating sand.

Hopefully it ends here, in the speculative stage. Otherwise, from what I’ve read and seen, it’s going to make the riots of ’67 look like a fine and proper tea party.