Art & War-Detroit & Homs: Two Links

From The Detroit Free Press:

Notice the argument is still over how to divvy up the remains:

‘But others, including David Skeel, author of “Debt’s Dominion: A History of Bankruptcy Law in America,” argue that Orr’s plan so clearly favors pensioners over other groups of creditors that it qualifies as unfair discrimination. “Giving pension beneficiaries nearly 100% of what they are owed, and bondholders less than 20%, is obvious discrimination,” Skeel wrote in this week’s edition of the Weekly Standard magazine’

A great nation deserves great art, and great unions, and public pension pay-outs, and more money and top-down solutions for schools, and more fairness and equality, and new New Deal programs, and more discussions about race, and a higher military budget, and more farm subsidies, and immigration reform, and more Clintons and Bushes and…

Your interest here:  _____________

Poor Detroit:


It looks like that Syrian Civil War is tipping back in Assad’s favor at the moment.  It’s a good thing we allowed Assad to buy himself some time, emboldened Putin, and sat back while  Islamists from all over the Muslim World and even from the West have filled-in.

From The Washington Post:

‘Syrian rebels began to evacuate their last footholds in the central city of Homs on Wednesday, departing under a deal loaded with poignancy for the opposition.

Hundreds of rebels boarded buses for the countryside north of the city after being allowed safe exit in a deal confirmed by both sides. Each fighter was allowed to carry one weapon and a bag of belongings.’

***A pretty damned good overview of Syria for the non-initiated, including what’s been going on since 2011 and the backstory at the thehowardbealeshow. Recommended. Really.

Related On This SiteMore Syria-From Via Media: ‘Congress on Syria: Going In On A Wing and A Prayer’From Slate: ‘In Aleppo, Syria, Mohamed Atta Thought He Could Build The Ideal Islamic City’

From the Daily, ‘cheap’ paper: How did Detroit get here?

Very comprehensive and easy to navigate.

More from Megan McArdle on the behavior that comes with pension bonuses.Charlie LeDuff, Detroit’s populist, citizen journalist’s youtube channel here.  At least he’s sticking around.

Are you looking at beautiful photos and feeling sorry for Detroit, and yourself?  See Time Magazine’s photo essay by Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre (less porn-like, more thoughtful).

Hipster hope, artists, collectivists and small business types can’t save it either:  A Short Culture Wars Essay-Two Links On Detroit & ‘Ruin Porn’

GM is not a municipality, but good money got put in, probably after bad and it reeks of politics: From The Detroit News: ‘How The Treasury, GM Stock Deal Got Done’


Michael Totten At World Affairs: ‘An American In The Den Of Assad’

Interview here.

Totten interviews Andrew Tabler, who spent many years living and working in and out of Damascus.  Some good analysis at the link:

‘…but Assad may be able to hold on longer than most people think, including those in the Obama administration. He’s not making the choices he could to get out of this. He’s not reforming. He’s not going to change the minority nature of the state.

At the same time, he has—and I talk about this in the book—he has one of the youngest populations in the Middle East. The demographics are a mess. Many Syrians were born in the ten years after the Hama massacre in 1982. Syria at the time had one of the fastest growing populations on the planet. All those young people are now out in the streets. In the long run I don’t see how a system run by the Alawite minority and that has been unable to reform under the Assad family for 42 years can accommodate the new Syria. In the end the regime will go down, but it could be very bloody’

Related On This Site:   From Michael Totten: ‘The New Egyptian Underground’……From Michael Totten: ‘An Interview With Christopher Hitchens’Michael Totten At The American Interest: “A Leaner, Meaner Brotherhood”

Is Obama’s foreign policy just liberal internationalist…is it ‘aggressive humanitarianism?’ What advantages and drawbacks does it have?: Adam Garfinkle At The American Interest: ‘Remember Libya?’

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