AJ’s Music Cafe got the Guinness entry for “longest continuous concert by multiple artists,” the Assembly Line Concert that ran over 280 hours in March 2009 for the benefit of awareness of the American Big 3 auto firms’ plight. So naturally he wants to do it again: Ferndale café plans 2010 music marathon to top own Guinness record (Detroit Free Press, August 20, 2009). It’s still unclear, to me at least, whether anything was accomplished besides a very long open mic, but hey.
One thing that GM and Chrysler are doing is appealing local property tax assessments, in an attempt to get them radically reduced. This helps the companies, of course. But it could be a mega-disaster for cities like Warren. According to the article in the current Warren Weekly, Chrysler wants a reduction of 45% while GM is expecting an 80% cut. These combined would cost the city of Warren over $7 million, and that doesn’t count what school districts or the county would lose. Layoffs loom in shadow of tax disputes (Warren Weekly, August 19, 2009)
Meanwhile, Detroit is now afflicted with a new plague: Journalists and photographers crawling all over all the decayed buildings and blocks of vacant lots. SOMETHING, SOMETHING, SOMETHING, DETROIT: Lazy Journalists Love Pictures of Abandoned Stuff (viceland.com, August 2009) alleges that people are flying in to help document the already well-documented decay of the city. Y’know, it was almost news when the CBC and New York Times came here, but really not; the city has been declining since the late 1950s. What’s happening these last couple of years is really not much worse, yet it’s like shooting fish in a barrel, I guess. As a result of the article, I learned a new term: “ruin porn.” If you knew how many people photographed places like the Michigan Central Station and the Packard Assembly Plant, you’d understand immediately.