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You Know That Your City Has Become A Hellhole When….

All across America there are cities and towns that were once prosperous and beautiful that are being transformed into absolute hellholes.  The scars left by the long-term economic decline of the United States are getting deeper and more gruesome.  The tax base in many areas of the nation has been absolutely devastated as millions of jobs have left this country.  Hundreds of cities are drowning in debt and are desperately trying to survive.  Last year, city government revenues in the United States fell by another 2.3 percent.  That was the fifth year in a row that we have seen a decline.  Meanwhile, costs associated with health care, pensions and virtually everything else continue to explode.  So what are cities doing to make ends meet?  Well, one big trend that we are now witnessing is that many U.S. cities have been getting rid of huge numbers of employees.  If you can believe it, 72 percent of all U.S. cities are laying workers off this year.  Social services and essential infrastructure programs are also being savagely cut back in many areas of the country.  The cold, hard truth is that most of our cities are flat broke and things are going to get even worse in the years ahead.

So how do you know if your own city has become a hellhole?

Well, a few potential "red flags" are posted below....

You know that your city has become a hellhole when most of the street lights get repossessed because of unpaid electric bills.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when it announces that it will no longer prosecute domestic violence cases in order to save money.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when it simply stops sending out pension checks to retired workers.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when it rips up asphalt roads and replaces them with gravel because gravel is cheaper to maintain.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when it eliminates the entire public bus system.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when nearly half of all the people living there can't read.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when one out of every ten homes sells for under $10,000.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when you can literally buy a house for one dollar.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when you have hundreds of people living in the tunnels underneath your streets.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when three of your past five mayors have been sent to prison for corruption.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when nearly half of the public schools in the city get shut down because of a lack of money.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when you have dozens of young people rampaging in the streets that are thirsty for revenge and that are armed with bats, pipes and guns.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when it is considered to be one of the 10 most dangerous cities in the world.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when thieves defecate in the back seat after they have broken into your car and taken your things.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when prostitution and drug dealing are two of the only viable businesses that remain in the city.

You know that your city has become a hellhole when the police chief announces that the police department will no longer respond to calls about burglary and identity theft due to very deep budget cuts.

Many of the examples above may seem humorous at first glance, but the truth is that they reveal just how deeply tragic our economic decline really is.

This is one of the reasons why I write about our trade deficit over and over and over.  Every single month, tens of billions of dollars more wealth goes out of the United States than enters it.  Every single month, we are getting poorer as a nation.  Every single month, we lose more jobs and businesses.

Any politician that tells you that he or she can solve our economic problems without fundamentally addressing our horrific trade imbalance is lying to you.  That means that there are a whole lot of liars in both political parties.

If the number of good jobs continues to decline, the plight of the average American family is going to continue to get worse.  Home sales will continue to hover around record lows.  The American people will continue to become increasingly frustrated with the economy.

The signs of decline are all around us.

Quit listening to the politicians and just open up your eyes and look.

So do any of you have any additional signs that a city has become a hellhole to add to the list above?  Please feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts below....

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  • Dee

    There is one thing and one thing only that can turn this country off its’ present course of destruction and that is an immediate, national display of repentance toward God and a return to our Christian heritage. Oh how I know that even the mere mention of this drives so many today crazy, but you see, that exactly is the problem. There is nobody who can honestly look at the exact corrolation between the removal of God from our society and the fall of our society and genuinely argue that it is just some extremely strange coincidence. I mean, really.

    In the past 50+ years we have seen the systematic removal of God’s influence from every last vestige of public life. He is not allowed in the schools (to the point where even wearing a cross or reading a bible can get you fired), He is not allowed in the courtrooms (i.e. Judge Roy Moore) and more and more He is not allowed into our homes or lives. Now let’s compare that trend, side by side, to the trend we currently find ourselves in with this once great country and I think it is absurd not to see the corrolation.

    When God is removed from the picture, with Him goes all that comes from Him (truth, morality, justice, respect for right and wrong, etc. etc.) – and let’s not forget His Blessing as well. We have become, for the most part, a Godless nation; therefore, we have become and are acting like a Godless people and this is clearly represented by the actions of our own goverment. I mean really, who is our government, if not a reflection of our people as a whole? Who elected them? Who looked the other way while they plundered and destroyed the incredible blessing and prosperity that our founding fathers fought and died to provide us with? John Adams once proclaimed that our system of government was wholly inadequate for any other than a religious, God fearing people, and we, my friends, have proven him correct.

    You want to fix the problems we are facing? Humble yourselves, swallow your pride, repent of your sins and turn back to the only one who can save us from ourselves – God and His Son Jesus Christ. If enough of us do this, it just may not be too late (read Jonah for proof of that).

    • Joe

      Dee,

      God helps them who help themselves. America is a rags to riches story. Been there, done that as have millions of others.

    • r.bitting

      May God bless you for saying what needs to be said.

  • Tom H

    Everyday, We are reminded of the root cause of our problem when we look in the mirror. The Pogo cartoon was right: “We have found the enemy and it is us”.

    I’m 63 and for the past 20 years or so, a recovering liberal/Democrat when I began to wake up and saw the Democrats as primarily a party of corruption, dependency, Socialism, and Communism. In the history of the world, transitioning to one of these latter forms of government this has always ended tragically.

    Our Founders were the wisest group of men who ever crafted a governing document. Unfortunately, we have ignored what they taught us. Here are a few thoughts on where we went astray:

    1) The Founders recognized that men are flawed and hence wrote a Constitution which built many checks and balances to insure that no faction could get too powerful and that it would be difficult to pass new laws and rescind those no longer working. Now, it is routinely and intentionally ignored. Some legislators don’t even know some of the most basic elements of the Constitution. We have a President, who to all appearances is a Muslim/Islam sympathizer and a Marxist, openly contemptuous of the Constitution.

    2) G. Washington noted correctly that in order for it to work, God would have to be a part of our lives. Our Society has been working overtime to exclude God from every aspect of our lives since about 1900. We’re now reaping the fruits of that exclusion. All that happened since have occurred because of this.

    3) We allowed and demanded that Government provide more and more goodies to we, the electorate. Such demands result in more government control and less freedom. Eventually this deteriorates into tyranny. We are very very close. ( Would the Founders have approved the IRS, the EPA, the Dept of Energy, the Dept of Educ., the TSA? — Not a chance

    4) We refuse to demand austerity from our elected legislators, thus piling on debt is the only possible result. This provides the goodies now which must be paid by all our children in the future, a process which can only result in abysmal failure.

    5) We refuse to elect ethical, honest, and moral legislators; we elect only those that promise us more. The solution is to only elect those who promise us LESS.

    6) We’ve allowed government to ignore our Constitution and bypass it by Executive orders, by thousands of bureaucratic rules. Thus, we now have 60′s radicals in control who have set a up a nightmarish bureaucratic government to achieve control over the electorate. These people are environmental extremists and would choose to save a rare fish over tens of thousands of jobs.

    I see a better future, but only after several years of economic and social pain. We must hit bottom, before beginning a recovery. We are moving into a brave new world that few of us can envision. The solution is and always has been to move back to the Constitution and adhere to it closely. We move also move back closer to our Creator and seek his guidance. Our survival depends on it.

  • Dejong

    The window’s dirty, the mattress stinks
    This ain’t no place to be a man
    I ain’t got no future, I ain’t got no past
    And I don’t think I ever can

    The floor is filthy, the walls are thin
    The wind is howling in my face
    The rats are peeling, I’m losing ground
    Can’t seem to join the human race

    Yeah!
    I’m living in a hell hole
    Don’t want to stay in this hell hole
    Don’t want to die in this hell hole
    Girl get me out of this hell hole

    I rode the jet stream, I hit the top
    I’m eating steak and lobster tails
    The sauna’s drafty – oooh, the pool’s too hot
    The kitchen stinks of boiling snails

    The taxman’s coming, the butler quit
    This ain’t no way to be a man
    I’m going back to where I started
    I’m flashing back into my pan

    Yeah, that’s what I am doing, and why not?
    It’s better in a hell hole
    You know where you stand in a hell hole
    Folks lend a hand in a hell hole
    Girl get me back to my hell hole

  • Tamara Carroll

    You know your city has become a hellhole when the EPA comes in making impossible demands on the small independent water companies such that all but one goes out of business and the one remaining triples your water bill in one month. We have no choice but to let our plants die. Where will our oxygen come from?

  • Maria

    Well,

    I live out in the country. UPS and Fed Ex couldn’t find my residence for two years. Cell phones don’t work out here, so almost everyone has a landline.

    Several weeks ago, somebody got so desperate they tore up all the phone line…for the copper I’m told. Our phone was out for a couple of days while the repairmen worked on the replacement.

    People are getting desperate….

    May God help us. Pray.

  • http://inthisdimension.com alex scipio

    Detroit was the wealthiest, per-capita, major city in America in the 1950s. What happened? LBJ and “Progressive” policy. Now it is the poorest major city in America.

    Detroit is what – demonstrably, undeniably – happens when you have strong unions, strong public-sector unions, high minium wage and “living wage” legislation.

    You can complain, you can argue, but the fact is that Progressivism kills all it touches. Every time. Everywhere.

  • Maria

    For the last couple of summers we have seen people camped out in their cars out here at our rural truck weigh station. There are no buildings on site….just the scale and a utility pole.

    We see more long term “campers” in the woods around our area.

    For the past couple of years, we are seeing more people living in barns, shops and sheds.

    People passing through wouldn’t notice but locals do.

  • http://afistfulofneurons.blogspot.com Cloudbuster

    Several of your items are misleading. The story about conversion of roads to gravel is taking place largely in rural areas, not cities, and several quotes in the story establish that the rural residents are not all terribly upset about it — I live in a rural county with a lot of gravel roads and not only are they easier to maintain, the operate in a way as unending “speed bumps” — reducing traffic on rural residential and agricultural roads. This actually improves the quality of life for residents by reducing the speed, volume and dangerousness of traffic on back roads. The gravel roads get fewer joyriders and teens traveling at high speeds. It’s safer for people, pets and livestock. The through and commercial traffic sticks to the paved roads, which are largely the roads that will get them where they’re going the quickest, anyway.

    In the city that discontinued bus service, the story is about a private company starting up service in the area. Private free enterprise is a GREAT thing and exactly the sort of result you’d hope for in that situation.

    Dollar houses have been available for a very, very long time, even in such prosperous cities as Columbus, Ohio — I had a co-worker back in the 80s by a $1 HUD home and fix it up. It was a great deal for them and for the neighborhood.

    Sorry, a lot of your “hellhole” examples just don’t fly.

  • Follow the illegals

    Millions of illegal immigrant swarming onto the dole roles, raising the crime rates, growing drugs in our national parks, raising the crime rates. What do you expect?

  • RightBrain

    Thieves dismantled a public bridge in New Castle PA to sell for scrap. Got $5k for destroying a multimillion dollar bridge.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/2011/10/15/2011-10-15_brothers_charged_with_stealing_pennsylvania_bridge_selling_it_for_5000.html

    • Michael

      That is so sad that people are so destructive like that.

      Michael

  • JTW

    Another one (happening in the city where my parents live):
    - when the city decides to no longer collect garbage, but requires people to deliver it to the landfill themselves (while of course not cutting the collection fees).

  • rosa-rooter

    maybe it’s time to relocate. become illegals ourselves.

  • trum

    I am tired of all the economic negative news. I think the reason the economy sounds bad has less to do with an actual recession than media sensationalism and doomsday pessimism. Everyone was in a panic in 1997 because of the Asian financial crisis, but the sky did not fall. I don’t think the media should lie about a high unemployment rate, but I would like to hear more positive news stories. Just like news reports about Y2K, killer bees, crack babies, Firestone tires, shark attacks, and the Gulf oil spill, people will soon realize any economic downturn is partly due to hype and life will go on.

    http://www.usnews.com/money/blogs/alpha-consumer/2009/1/8/did-the-media-cause-the-recession.html

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/1998/int/980706/cover_story.one_year_aft33.html

    I did some research and found that there is plenty of good news out there:

    The recession officially ended in June 2009:

    http://money.cnn.com/2010/09/20/news/economy/recession_over/?section=money_latest

    The unemployment rate is falling:

    http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/article/20110402/GPG0101/104020692/U-S-unemployment-rate-falls-2-year-low?odyssey=tab%7Ctopnews%7Ctext%7CGPG-News

    The stock market has risen 53% recently and is still cheap:

    http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2009/oct/15/cautious-optimism/?uniontrib

    Apple, SkyWest, Kroger’s, General Mills, CarMax, Walgreen, Dell, Discover, and Nike are just some of the many respected American companies to have declared profits recently:

    http://blog.seattlepi.com/microsoft/archives/182538.asp?from=blog_last3

    http://www.usatoday.com/travel/flights/2009-11-05-skywest-q3-profit_n.htm

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/15/business/15kroger.html?src=busln

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-09-22/general-mills-first-quarter-profit-rises-12-on-sales-of-cereals-snacks.html

    http://www.fayobserver.com/articles/2010/09/22/1033100?sac=Bus

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/29/business/29walgreen.html

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-15/dell-reports-profit-that-tops-estimates-on-business-pc-demand.html

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-03-22/discover-beats-estimates-on-declining-defaults-boosts-payout-shares-gain.html

    http://www.oregonlive.com/playbooks-profits/index.ssf/2011/09/nike_posts_15_first_quarter_pr_1.html

    US housing starts have risen:

    http://blog.al.com/breaking/2009/10/us_housing_starts_rise.html

    Business confidence has grown:

    http://www.bostonherald.com/business/general/view.bg?articleid=1203965&srvc=rss

    Factory orders have increased:

    http://www.telegram.com/article/20110203/NEWS/110209884/1002/busines

    Consumer confidence has climbed:

    http://money.cnn.com/2010/08/31/news/economy/consumer_confidence/index.htm?section=money_latest

    Consumer spending is up:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE65M2WK20100628?loomia_ow=t0:s0:a49:g43:r5:c0.051546:b35270006:z0

    The US GDP rose 3.1%:

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Stocks-rise-on-Oracle-apf-2813128403.html?x=0

    US exports rise:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/09/business/economy/us-exports-rise-to-record-as-trade-deficit-shrinks.html

    North Dakota has an unemployment rate of 3.7%. South Dakota and Nebraska have unemployment rates of less than 5%. Singapore has an unemployment rate of just 2.2%. Unemployed people who move to these places can find work in agriculture, oil fields, schools, and hospitals. These newcomers will need to buy homes, food, and services creating more jobs. If you don’t have a job, move to an area with a better economy. If you can’t sell your house at the price you want, you shouldn’t have paid so much for it. If you don’t want to move and make trade-offs, I guess that you aren’t that desperate for work.

    http://www.bls.gov/lau/

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703803904576152630710927512.html

    http://www.jamestownsun.com/event/article/id/81609/

    http://www.economist.com/node/18488276?story_id=18488276

    The United States will face a labor SHORTAGE in the next few years as millions of baby boomers retire. There are 76 million baby boomers, but Generation X only has 46 million people.

    http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2002185894_boomers21.html

    http://www.argusleader.com/article/20091107/business/911070331/1001/news

    If you really want to stay where you are and haven’t found a job, think of a way to make money from your hobbies. Find a need and fill it. Do you like to cook? Are you good at fixing things? Do you like to paint? Optimists make more money and I strongly believe that if you do what you love, the money will follow. Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve. If there is a recession, choose not to participate. Just because someone says there is a recession, doesn’t make it true. Just because most people used to believe the world was flat, did that make it true? If you are feeling negative, I highly recommend the book “You Can Have it All”:

    http://www.librarything.com/work/508754

    http://www.entrepreneur.com/management/managementcolumnistscotthalford/article207648.html

    You might also feel less sorry for yourself or the economy if put your life in perspective. How would you like to trade places with someone in North Korea? Would you rather live in Burundi where the GDP per capita income is $300 per YEAR?

    https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2004rank.html?countryName=Burundi&countryCode=by&regionCode=af&rank=228

    Even if things are really bad for you and you become homeless, there is a safety net of food banks, shelters, general relief, and food stamps. You could join a commune or a monastery.

    America needs a good pep talk instead of negativity. I really think Obama would be more helpful to the economy by talking about the positive sides instead of pushing expensive stimulus programs. People should live within their means to avoid crashing the economy, but even when overextended, the United States has managed to pay the massive debts of the Depression and WWII.

    http://zfacts.com/p/318.html

    http://reuters.com/article/2011/09/29/idUS412302169920110929

    Americans need to think more like immigrants. Politicians are too afraid to say it, but Americans should stop whining, get up, take responsibility, lower their standards, bite their lips, tough it out, and get busy. Americans should stop buying SUV’s and McMansions they can’t afford and pay off their debts. I have no sympathy for the sheep who went in debt to buy expensive restaurant meals, clothes, vacations, cars, and overpriced homes when times were good instead of saving for a rainy day. Buy LOW and sell HIGH. If people had put their money in the bank instead of wasting it they would still have it. NOW is the time to buy stocks and houses, not when the stock market and real estate prices are hitting record highs. The United States is capitalist not Communist. There is social Darwinism and survival of the fittest here. If Americans want a handout, they should move to Sweden. I have seen refugees from places like Vietnam immigrate to the US with NOTHING and own houses and cars five years later, while some lazy Americans who have lived in public housing and on welfare for GENERATIONS complain about how poor they are. Why can a third world immigrant who doesn’t speak English make more money in five years than some Americans who have lived in the US their entire life?

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2010/09/27/financial/f063017D17.DTL&ao=all

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704895004575395491314812452.html

    The negative thinking about “tough times” and the supposedly “decline of the US” kills me. The USA is by far the richest and most powerful country in the world. Who invented the assembly line, telephones, movies, light bulbs, airplanes, air conditioning, elevators, skyscrapers, television, the atomic bomb, the pill, calculators, microwaves, lasers, the Internet, mobile phones, the space shuttle, and landed on the moon? What country wins the most medals at the Olympics despite having only 5% of the world’s population? If the United States is dying, why do so many people want to immigrate there? If the US economy is so bad, why do so many people flock to buy US treasuries as a safe haven?

    http://www.statemaster.com/encyclopedia/List-of-United-States-inventions

    http://englishrussia.com/index.php/2010/02/14/russian-or-not-russian/

    http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/summer08/medals

    Maybe I am the last optimist in America, but I think the best years of the United States are ahead of us, not behind us. I would be shocked if the USA won’t be the first country to put a person on Mars, invent mass-produced hydrogen and solar cars, and cure cancer. Americans who worry about the future are ignoring the facts and aren’t doing anyone any favors.

    http://www.usc.edu/student-affairs/dt/V142/N24/01-theglass.24v.html

    I have lived through many booms and busts. Every time there is boom, people think good times will last forever. Every time there is a recession, people think it will never end. While I am not blind to the difficulties that may exist in the present economy, I just think people should be more optimistic and look at the good sides. I remember when I was in middle school in the mid 1980’s and had a teacher who asked my classmates whether the USA was on the way to the peak of power, at the peak, or on the way down. I was the only student who said the US hasn’t reached the peak yet. A few years later the Soviet Union collapsed, the Japanese economy crashed, and America was the only superpower.

    I am not sure if there is a recession, but if there is one, I think it will soon be a distant memory.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/05/opinion/05douthat.html?_r=1

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2010/04/08/the-comeback-country.html

    http://www.nytimes.com/1994/03/12/business/consumer-spending-in-rebound.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm

    ——————————

    Remember: Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right.

    See the glass as half full, not half empty.

    Anyone who bets against the United States will always lose.

    • Uncle B

      This is my favorite cut and paste!
      “Had the $650 billions+ spent on Iraq, been spent on conventional Solar/Thermal development of South Western U.S.A. – Today, Americans would receive a ROI ( “Return On Investment”) in cheap electricity, in place of horrendous tax rates to service unpayable war debt to China. Americans would be gainfully working, using this renewable, perpetual, eternal, clean, radiation free, radioactive waste free, domestic, electricity source – to compete in world markets with well priced products, and much less foreign oil would have be imported, fewer “Parasite Nations” supported. This is the lost “opportunity cost” for having Saddam’s scrotum on the Bushes mantlepiece? Shiite eh!”
      P.S., (Oil wells do go dry, not really sourced from an eternal pipe up &Allah’s-ass, as some believe – But, the Sun never stops shining, Wind blows forever)

  • http://BrianElderRoofing.com Jay

    I am grateful I finally found your blog. I had some questions to. I hope you will not mind that I bookmark this site. Keep up the great info.

  • Susie

    Towns in the South have looked like that for years as a result of forced integration and civil rights push of the 1960′s.

  • george

    come on ww 3

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