October 30, 2009
“The stated plan was that different parts of the world would be assigned different roles of industry and commerce in a unified global system. The continued preeminence of the United States and the relative independence and self-sufficiency of the United States would have to be changed… in order to create a new structure, you first have to tear down the old, and American industry was one example of that.”
“Each part of the world will have a specialty and thus become inter-dependent, he said. The US will remain a center for agriculture, high tech, communications, and education but heavy industry would be “transported out.”
One local told us about the recent suicide of the head of a failed plant in the Del Ray neighborhood inside Detroit. The factories jobs had been lost and unemployment benefits were about to run out. As an outsider, it was becoming difficult to keep track of the many former factories, standing as relics. I wasn’t clear about the details of the scenario, but the desperation seemed to underscore the worst parts of the Great Depression many hoped was gone for good. Many areas, including the collapsed pillars on the top floor of the Packard plant, literally resemble Roman ruins. It is a study of what once was, a city based on an abortive concept. Detroit is frozen in decline, the post-industrial society has fully sunk in. Slow death since the onset of globalization had atrophied a sector once poised as a boon of wealth.