Pittsburgh to Detroit: Bake This!

The national media have shared a lot of recent opinions regarding what Detroit -- a failing city -- might learn from Pittsburgh -- a formerly failing city.

The answer is plain, and it comes as a surprise to many that well-respected media (the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and NPR among them) have missed the boat.

Bake. More. Cupcakes.

The Cupcake Class saved Pittsburgh, and the Cupcake Class is the cure for Detroit's ills. The lesson of Pittsburgh's rise from the ashes is that conspicuous consumption in the 21st century must be taken literally, not metaphorically.

The transition from an economy focused on producing durable goods to an economy focused on producing baked goods is neither simple nor cost-less. Workers trained to operate sophisticated robots will need to be retrained to operate frosting guns. Dealerships built to sell hundreds of Hummers will have to re-purposed as high-end patisseries. Elementary schools will need to adjust their policies and again permit parents to bring baked treats to class for birthday celebrations. Mayors who bet on Super Bowls will need to throw down the baker's gauntlet: You can't lick this. And the Detroit Lions will have to shed their reputation as the cupcakes of the NFL.

Bake away.


1 Response to "Pittsburgh to Detroit: Bake This!"

C. Briem said... 4/01/2009 1:09 PM

What about the custard?

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About Pittsblog

Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at]gmail.com. Mike also blogs at Madisonian.net, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

All opinions expressed at Pittsblog 2.0 are those of their respective authors and of no one (and no thing) else, least of all the University of Pittsburgh.

Pittsblog 2.0 has a motto: "It's steel good in Pittsburgh." Say it aloud, with a Pittsburgh accent.

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