From the July 2009 Idaho Observer:

Obama gives "urban bulldozer" czar a greenlight on 50 U.S. cities

Obama with U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee (D-MI) and his son Dan at Kettering University in Flint June 16, 2008. Fourteen-time incumbent Rep. Kildee has served in the House since 1977. Dan reportedly described to then candidate Obama his radical plan to bulldoze about 40 percent of Flint, MI, at this meeting. "President" Obama remembered and now the younger Kildee is working with D.C. think tanks, charitable organizations and the Obama administration to plan the bulldozing in areas of some 50 U.S. cities: Change.

The London Telegraph reported earlier this month that, "Dozens of US cities may have entire neighbourhoods bulldozed as part of drastic "shrink to survive" proposals being considered by the Obama administration to tackle economic decline."

Flint, Michigan, the birthplace of General (now "Government") Motors, may be the first town to pioneer the concept.

The idea is the brainchild of Dan Kildee, Genesee County Treasurer, the county’s Democrat party central committee chair and board chairman of the Genesee County Land Bank. Kildee reportedly presented his idea with a PowerPoint presentation in 2005.

Kildee and other local politicians believe the city, one of the poorest in the country with hundreds of vacant buildings and decaying infrastructure, must shrink by as much as 40 per cent, concentrating the dwindling population and local services into a more viable area.

During the election campaign, Kildee was able to outline his strategy to Obama. The changeling, who, ironically, has the memory of an elephant, remembered. According to The Telegraph, "Mr. Kildee has now been approached by the U.S. government and a group of charities who want him to apply what he has learnt to the rest of the country."

Kildee, 49, who is now bucking for a czarship within the Obama administration, said he will concentrate on 50 cities that have been identified in a recent study by the Brookings Institute as needing some bulldozing. Most of the targeted cities are part of the "rust belt"—former industrial centers that include Detroit, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Memphis.

"Much of the land will be given back to nature. People will enjoy living near a forest or meadow," Kildee said.

On the surface, the radical plan—demolishing abandoned buildings, obliterating roads and restoring the land to meadows and forests—sounds like a good idea. Indeed, Kildee and his colleagues have already demolished some 1,100 Flint-area homes and feel another 3,000 need to come down. The Telegraph reported that, according to Kildee, the city of Flint, "…is buying up houses in more affluent areas to offer people in neighbourhoods it wants to demolish. Nobody will be forced to move, said Mr Kildee."

One Michigan blogger stated, "So there you have it—a liberal Democrat trifecta. They can seize more power, spread the wealth around and placate the environmentalist extremists simultaneously."

The plan does fit in nicely with the Wildlands Project that came to light during the Clinton era—a plan to reduce and/or restrict human activity in large tracts of formerly developed areas to promote the restoration of animal habitat and migration routes.

The hardest thing to admit is that bulldozing up to 40 percent of formerly flourishing cities means that America is shrinking. But what is most disconcerting is that a few people recognized that there will be a lot of money to be made in the new America as the progeny of opportunists who recklessly expanded our economy on credit and speculation are now poised to reap the rewards of cleaning up the mess.