“Mr. President, please drive through Detroit,” beseeched The Detroit News editorial headline Wednesday before Barack Obama’s visit to Michigan.
Obama ignored Detroit, skirting its border to raise money in the tony suburb of Bingham Farms where Democratic One Percenters live safely in Republican Brooks Patterson’s Oakland County far from Detroit’s crime and dysfunction. Indeed, Oakland is the very antithesis of Barack Obama. Its chief executive loathes Obama. Patterson’s conservative government eschews Obama’s seat-of-pants budgeting. Its low tax, low regulatory environment sucks business from Detroit – the high-tax, Big Labor model of Democratic politics.
Detroit is a model of 40 years of Democratic malpractice. Of billions wasted on fanciful liberal programs that have failed to stem record murder rates. Of welfare programs that destroyed the nuclear family, dooming generations of kids to fatherless homes- the #1 driver of poverty in America. Of unions that have brought the city to the brink of insolvency.
Improbably, Obama took his anti-entrepreneur message – he is regarded by America’s top businessmen as anti-business – to the home of Denise Ilitch, the daughter of one of Metro Detroit’s most successful entrepreneurs, Mike Ilitch, presumably one of the reviled One Percenters whose greed the president says has exacerbated America’s wealth gap. The irony was rich as Obama lounged in Ilitch opulence.