Journalist Gordon Young tackles the question of how to fix his hometown of Flint, Michigan on Medium.com.
Flint — like other poverty stricken municipalities — has the vexing ability to resist broader economic upturns. Real growth, let alone bubbles, never seem to visit. The city continued to decline during the boom years of the Clinton administration and kept sinking during the modest but historically long-running economic recovery that President Obama orchestrated. Clearly, a rising tide doesn’t lift all boats. U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee, who is an exuberant practitioner of metaphor, describes these cities as “anchored to the bottom of the ocean.”
“I don’t think we can chip away at the problem,” he told me recently. “We need a big, bold, and very significant effort to help areas where you have chronic poverty. Until we fix the fundamental problems, we are really just managing the decline.”