Photo by SEAMO – SEAMONSTERThe “natural” consequence of drastically cutting state budgets, drastically cutting federal support to cities, and then drastically cutting the ability of cities and towns to raise taxes themselves, is simple. Although the best argument is that it disciplines cities, and unleashes an entrepreneurial spirit (by reducing barriers to budiness), the real truth is that it hamstrings the abilities of cities to function at all. They can’t function as business hubs–without real police and fire department protection much less an educated work force what business would locate there. They can’t function as hubs for the “creative class”–perhaps they don’t need police and fire protection because they’re interested in living in the urban wilderness and remaking the city, but they definitely need someone to consume the wares they sell.
They end up functioning like the worse public housing projects function. As holding pens.