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Ed Driscoll

If Only the Czar Knew!

July 19th, 2013 - 1:37 pm

Some adorably magical thinking from the Democrat Michigan county circuit judge who is throwing a grain of sand into the mammoth gear works of Detroit’s inevitable bankruptcy:

Prior to her ruling on Friday, she criticized the Snyder administration and Attorney General’s Office for what appeared to be hasty action to outflank pension board attorneys.

“It’s cheating, sir, and it’s cheating good people who work,” the judge told assistant Attorney General Brian Devlin. “It’s also not honoring the (United States) president, who took (Detroit’s auto companies) out of bankruptcy.”

Aquilina said she would make sure President Obama got a copy of her order.

“I know he’s watching this,” she said, predicting the president ultimately will have to take action to make sure existing pension commitments are honored.

Oh, I’m sure he is, in-between inserting himself into the aftermath of George Zimmerman’s trial, which Obama had ginned up into a national story last year. Not to mention that Kevyn Orr, Detroit’s “emergency manager” already spoke to the Obama White House last week, according to Walter Russell Mead yesterday:

Detroit, one of the 20th century’s great American cities, is now almost certain to stagger through the early 21st century in Chapter 9 bankruptcy. The WSJ reports that the chances of out-of-court settlement are scant. Emergency manager Kevyn Orr is unlikely to reach agreements with enough of Detroit’s bondholders and pension funds to restructure the city’s debt:

Mr. Orr “has taken such a hard line with creditors that a bankruptcy filing is inevitable,” [research advisory director Matt] Fabian said. […]

A “free fall” bankruptcy filing—one without a clear plan or much agreement beforehand with creditors—is a likely outcome.

Buried in the middle of the report is a telling climax to this sorry tragedy:

Any hope of a federal bailout to avert bankruptcy fizzled last week after Mr. Orr spoke with the White House, including Obama confidante Valerie Jarrett, according to city and White House officials.

This is where blue governance has brought Detroit in the end: not even a liberal Democratic administration will step in to save the pensions of thousands of public workers and African Americans, condemning countless innocents to having their pensions and health benefits gutted in bankruptcy court.

The judge’s shout out to Barry was certainly cute (and got her a Drudge link), but it seems a non-sequitur. What is the relationship between the early Obama administration’s nationalization of Government Motors, which pushed the collapse of GM and Chrysler a bit further into the future, and the bankruptcy of the city of Detroit’s government?

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All Comments   (6)
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Acquilina is a Democrat judge, so the Constitution is something that she may not be familiar with. Bankruptcy law is Federal according to the Constitution. Article I, Section 8, Clause 4.

"To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;"

Granting that there well may be those on Michigan Court of Appeals who want to keep the Narrative going as long as possible, but as soon as it hits a Federal judge, I suspect that Acquilino may get schooled.

And if she does not get schooled, we will know that we really do have a Tsar and no longer a Republic. Something we have been expecting for a while anyway.

Subotai Bahadur
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Under the Illinois state Constitution, her ruling is technically correct. It is the state's Constitution that needs a dose of reality, and will soon get it. The Constitution forbids any attempt bto reduce the pension benefits of retirees in the state. As admirable as thet sounds, it is unrealistic because those benefits are unsustainable given the current Detroit tax base. If the constitutional provision is enforced, nobody, except those to poor to pay taxes, will want to live in Detroit.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
What does the Illinois state constitution have to do with Detroit?
38 weeks ago
38 weeks ago Link To Comment
I believe you're correct. In essence the whole point is whether he had the authority to file for bankruptcy. If the bankruptcy court acquires jurisdiction then its authority prevails. But those filing on behalf of another must have legal authority to do so. That's the whole point.

Of course, if they can't file bankruptcy the amount of chaos this will generate will be interesting indeed. Detroit will be writing hot checks and I doubt very many people will be willing to accept them. What then?
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Where do they find such lame-brained idiots to appoint as judges? This woman obviously cannot think well enough to find her way out of a paper bag but would likely be able to conjure up a bag full of excuses why (paper bags are "unfair", you're prejudiced against stupid hacks, etc, etc) Seriously, how does she even find her way to work in the morning?
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
She was elected!
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
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