ShareThis Page
Robbing prosperity |

Robbing prosperity

| Monday, May 21, 2007 12:00 a.m

A new study by the Brookings Institution, “Restoring Prosperity: The State Role in Revitalizing America’s Older Industrial Cities,” is a textbook example of the mind-set that created one dazzling Pittsburgh renaissance after another while the city continued to decay.

The report by the liberal think tank in Washington, D.C. — online at — lists economically-challenged cities, including nine in Pennsylvania such as Pittsburgh, that could overcome their problems “if state and local leaders work together to create an agenda for change.”

If wise politicians agree on a “holistic urban agenda,” the nation’s distressed communities can be saved, says Brookings. Call it trickle-down government.

That would mean more state money for “big ticket” real estate projects, mass transit, broadband Internet access in the downtown, housing, mental health and substance abuse programs for released convicts, as well as money to help them find work, ad nauseam. Heavily subsidized European cities with strong mayors with the vision thing are offered as role models.

But Hong Kong restored itself after World War II. Even with little arable land and few natural resources. Thank Hong Kong’s “positive noninterventionism” laissez-faire policy for its dazzling prosperity.

Ensuring people are free to help themselves is the best help a state can provide.

Categories: News
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.