Yes, Detroit is still not anything close to what it once. Indeed, there are forests and wildlife now occupying large swaths of former neighborhoods and industry. But that doesn’t mean things aren’t improving there with the renewed strength of the Big 3. However, Steyn, a Canadian conservative commentator (SteynOnline.com) filling in for Rush Limbaugh on 2/7 took a couple of shots at the Chrysler 200 Super Bowl commercial to criticize the car company, the city of Detroit and Eminem. Locally the radio show aired on Citadel Broadcasting’s WJR-AM.
Referring to a book published last year that showed the city’s ruins, Steyn compared Detroit to European cities reduced to rubble during world wars.
“We’re now being told that this is the model for America in the 21st century,” he said. “If it is, we’re all doomed…Unlike European cities, no bombs fell on this American city,” he said. “This American city did it to themselves.”
He blamed the decline on unions and a succession of liberal political leaders. Steyn also criticized the automaker for spending what he called $9 million of taxpayer money for the ad. Chrysler received a federal bailout of $15 billion in 2009 and is currently negotiating with banks to refinance the debt.
Steyn did, however, compliment Eminem for appearing at Detroit’s Fox Theatre during the spot: “I congratulate this guy on having found a theater to appear in that is still standing in Detroit,” he said.
RBR-TVBR observation: Well, of course, full-blown competition from Japanese, Korean and European automakers did it as well to the city. But we thought the ad was positive for Detroit and the Chrysler brand. Hopefully it translates to purchases.