Economic Suicide | Letters | Chicago Reader

Economic Suicide 

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To the editors:

Perhaps as a commoner, I don't have a full understanding of the basic principles of economics, but it seems to me that the plan for revitalizing 35th and State ("Black Metropolis," April 9) is lacking one obvious component: a job base. Anyone with half an ounce of common sense knows that you can't support a community on "music clubs and entertainment centers." Libraries, day-care centers, and job training programs (for what jobs?) are only adjuncts to employment. At best, any of these places provide a minimum number of low-wage service jobs. There's not enough money in any of this to revitalize a community.

It seems the reason the area thrived in the first half of the century was because of its stable manufacturing base. It's time we stopped suicidal economic development which relies on strip malls and entertainment centers. Cuz if there's no place to earn a decent buck, we can't spend it. If American manufacturers are unwilling to invest in those they expect to consume their products, they will eventually put themselves out of business. Then maybe we will begin to invest in ourselves.

Better yet, let's start now.

Mary Ellen Croteau

N. Troy

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