Communities, Goverments, and Social Movements-I
A systematic theory is one which articulates a number of definitions and propositions to one another so that those developed later in the theory are dependant on those earlier in the theory, either as special cases or as combinations of previous definitions and propositions. The usefulness of this enterprise is that it makes theory economical: there are no more definitions and propositions than are necessary to explain a subject matter, thereby reducing the number of redundant definitions and propositions or ones that are in fact conflicting even though those not exposed to systematic theory may not be aware of that. So a concept of individualism stripped of its inclusion within a systematic theory confuses matters because it is used to invoke both laissez faire economics and the internality of personhood as well as the separation of a person from the government of and by others. Moreover, systematic theory identifies the basic phenomenon that is being discussed and so clarifies it by not treating a basic concept as accompanied by much strum and dross, as occurs, for example, when climatologists say that there is more extreme weather than there used to be without ever providing a definition of what “extreme” means. And moreover still, propositions which seem common observations lose their potency if they are not derived from more fundamental principles, which was discovered when nineteenth century geometers realized that the proposition that parallel lines never meet was not an axiom of geometry but rather a definition of a condition that would lead to the development of a particular geometry.
No where in intellectual life is the need for systematic theory clearer than it is in the social sciences because there it is the necessary hedge against the platitudes and half baked observations that pass for analysis among people who make their livings as commentators or even as scholars of political and social life. So Machiavellianism is seen as the truth about politics, when the idea that leaders need to be feared more than they need to be loved flies in the face of what we know about American leaders, which is that most of them feel the need to be loved and that the American population is willing to forgive any number of lapses—the Bay of Pigs, Katrina—if the leader is personable enough. Similarly, it becomes a matter of argument in political campaigns whether entrepreneurs are totally responsible for their own accomplishments no matter how many times the obvious point gets made that infrastructure and research and development are collective purchases. People become oblivious to the obvious when their political passions intrude. So let us get on with organizing definitions and propositions, some fresh, some conventional, and some controversial but supported by the fact that they fit into the overall system, so as to provide a less heated basis for the discussion of political life.
A community is a set of people who share a social niche or a status but not necessarily both. A social niche is a fundamental term for sociological analysis. It is the geographical area which a set of people traverse in the course of a unit of time, such as a day or a work week. People tend to do the same things every day, with some exceptions for weekends. Vacations and business trips interrupt that usual round of life, but otherwise people make the same trip to work, visit the same supermarkets, go to restaurants and schools in the area, and walk on or exercise on the same streets and parks. A map of a person’s ordinary round of life can easily enough be constructed. Specialized communities can be identified with particular maps. So a bedroom community can be identified as one where there is a long “gerrymander” laid down on highways or rail routes that connect a person to the place of employment, that narrow strip traversed on a daily or near daily basis. In similar fashion, an insular community is one where people hardly leave their neighborhoods ever. The extreme residential segregation characteristic of what are called ghettos has that kind of map. A status group can inhabit geographically separated but equivalent social niches. Affluent suburban communities in Connecticut are like affluent suburban communities in Michigan and ghetto communities in Pittsburgh are like ghetto communities in New York.
There is much else that can be said about communities through the use of this minimalist definition. Communities rather than ideology give rise to a sense of life. People know how fragile is life in a ghetto community and they know how privileged they are to go to school with people who also live in their well to do suburb. Books and culture provide a respite from and leverage by which to criticize communities, but the given to which people respond is the communities in which they grow up. All that is to say that there is no need to define communities around a set of values, which is what the Durkheim tradition does, or as the fracturing of self that takes place in metropolitan communities. People can live in urban communities which are either fractured or not so. Moreover, the community may or may not enforce any values, just have a set of customs that can vary from neighborhood to neighborhood and which a person may or may withstand by making use of other facts of social life, such as libraries and schools and movie theatres and families that extend beyond the community. Sometimes a community is dominated by gangs; sometimes not. Those are circumstances of community life, not essential to it. But the main concern here is with political communities.
A political community is a community where there is an elite to provide direction to the community. That may be an internal elite, such as happens in most large cities, but there can also be an external elite of business executives that provide the jobs that sustain most of the members of the community. That external elite may not only reside elsewhere; it has interests different from, let us say, providing parks to the community or increasing the number of jobs within the community. Communities can learn that their mayors and other elected representatives can do very little to defer the wishes of the external elites. This is also true of organizational communities such as universities, where both students and faculty learn that members of the boards of trustees, who have no organizational role on campus other than having been appointed to the board of trustees, make determinations about university policy and even tenure that would seem to the members of the community to belong more properly to themselves.
Among the things the elite does is spark the identification of the membership with their communities so that they can be mobilized to go to war, if it is a nation, or accept the schools to which their students have been assigned, whether by lottery or neighborhood, that the political leadership has imposed. Most people will not see any choice, but some people can move to a different school district or somehow flout the rules, and they can vote out of office a city administration that seems too cavalier in the way it assigns students. Lotteries seem to be fair because they are random, and parents of school age children may not know that just some years before there was a different way of doing it. The same is true with the assignment of welfare benefits in what have become employment offices, and the selection of Presidential candidates before a system of primaries came to prevail. Leadership in cities and in nations is not necessarily provided by political parties. These happen to be very weak at the moment in the United States, politics dominated by the media and large contributors and the personalities of candidates and the ideologies with which the parties become aligned.
Political organizations are organizations which attempt to connect the members of a political community to an idea of themselves as a community by conferring some status upon them that will connect them to the organization. These include the statuses of citizen, subject, party member, or brother. Nation states, villages and occupations rely on social niche as the basis of political community. The rounds of life of a doctor or a lawyer and in some important respects even the citizens of a country have a lot in common. In the United States, citizens have to contend with people who are all agitated about abortion or heavy national debt and with how long it takes to commute to work or get around the country, given the absence of sufficient long distance railroad lines, while in Israel citizens have to contend with people who are all agitated about the rights of the ultra-orthodox or concern themselves with whether a new apartment has a bomb shelter. Ethnic groups and religions rely on status as the basis of political community. Social classes rely on the overlap of the two as the basis of political community. They attempt to convince people who share a common round of work or even of leisure that they share the same status. Hunters join the NRA and oldsters join AARP because these two organizations provide benefits and solidarity for those in their status group as well as engage in political lobbying to support the issues that get defined by the leadership of the organizations as essential to the interests of the status groups that the organizations have in part created.
Although any community can take on political ends, there are a great number of kinds of organizations other than political ones which attempt to coordinate leadership with a status group or a social niche. Economically driven organizations may treat the aggregate of potential customers as a community they call a "clientele". In that case, the people who have demographic statuses that are of significance to the economic organization are cultivated by advertising to think of themselves as related to the product. The economic organization, and that applies to lobbying groups as well as to business organizations, achieves steady sales when it is able to create a group of people who think of themselves as regular customers for the product because they see themselves as part of a community who recognize the purchase of the product as an expression of their own identity and good sense, part of a communal style of life.
A newspaper or political movement will think of the status groups it wishes to mobilize as "constituencies". These are groups tied to the organization by their consent to the point of view the organization espouses. Newspapers are often caught in the difficulty of thinking of themselves as having both clienteles and constituencies. They have difficulty deciding whether they are a voice of the people who buy their paper, making their concerns articulate, or are dispensers of advertising and editorial materials which their consumers will find entertaining. The general point, and this is not the conventional wisdom of political science, is that government is not different in kind from other kinds of organizations, even though it is claimed for it that government alone has the sweeping and profound authority over its citizens and subjects that constitutes legitimate authority. To the contrary, many organizations are government like in trying to instill loyalty into their customers and membership, and there are also any number of organizations, such as churches and scientific disciplines, which vie with government for intense loyalty. A scientist will not betray his scientific principles simply because the government asks him to, and pharmaceutical companies develop any number of ruses to keep their scientists in the dark about what the decisions made by corporate executives imply.
Political parties are like other organizations in that they run the same risks as those other organizations do when they petition their constituencies for support by running advertising that treats them as customers who are looked to only for their vote rather than for their allegiance to a particular policy or political point of view. This kind of political campaigning is the subject of a good deal of rhetorical concern by the news media which wish to make a monopoly of "objective" reporting. Political campaigns that aims to win votes rather than promulgate policies creates problems for officials once they are elected because they cannot count on the support of a constituency which has not been educated to support the policies of those who have been elected. But, on the other hand, such campaigns can win elections and then an elected official can use the powers and the prestige of the office to pursue policies otherwise arrived at than by consulting constituencies. Governments are powerful because they are independent of what brought them to office. The people have no way of enforcing the promises made by now elected officials except by not voting for them the next time around. Government in the modern age is therefore a creature of the staggering of elections. No other form of organization is similarly free. Doctors and lawyers are subject to ongoing supervision by their professional organizations and businesses depend on the next customer who crosses the threshold.
All political communities, including nation states and ethnic groups, attempt to give special priority to the status which is shared by the leadership organization and those others who have that status. Some Jews claim that Jewish culture is a Jew's most important identity because loyalty to history is less transient than other matters, such as the observance of rituals, and some Christians claim that a Christian's most important identity is his religious one because loyalty to one's soul transcends all other loyalties. A political party might argue that loyalty to social class should take priority over other loyalties, even if this happens only for the members of the leadership organization who dedicate themselves to the organization as a full time activity and the members of the status group who devote themselves to the charisma of the leadership group. That is the case with the Tea Party but it was also true of Free Soilers.
A government is a political organization which claims a monopoly on the right to enforce the priority of a particular status or status group over other statuses and status groups. A government therefore need be no more than the religious elite which has managed to endow the political elite with a religious aura so that the rest of the population will comply with the demands of the leadership. Or there may be a weak government where the local sheriff simply enforces the wishes of the ranchers over and against the interests of the sheepherders. This definition incorporates Parsons’ view that government presides over the distribution of the resources of a society. It does so, however, not only by tax legislation and rules of law, but also by simply acknowledging and enforcing the cultural priority of one status group over another. Southern state governments did not intrude in the governance of the slaves held in their midst. The slaveholders did that job. Indeed, the Confederate Constitution did not alter or take over the governance of slaveholding. It simply respected whatever arrangements were mandated in individual states. A government can call on people for emotional loyalty, for compliance with laws, to serve as soldiers in wartime, or to take on other privations or privileges. All of these have to do with the arrangement of statuses: you are or not classified as ready to be called up for military service; you are or not required to pay this particular percentage of income as taxes. Political campaigns are fought over how to identify a status: if you are a job creator, you should pay lower taxes than people who are not job creators, but if you are among the one percent then it is only fair for you to pay a higher percentage of your income in taxes.
a. A dynastic state like China simply regards all people within the area of its control as subject to its rule. Dynastic states face problems of legitimacy because the ethnicity of the leadership group may differ from that of the population which it controls. A dynastic leadership compensates for the lack of the shared status of a political community by co-opting ethnic leaders, organizations, and customs. The dynastic state counts on the passivity of the people and the mechanisms of control to allow it to function as a political community with low levels of mobilization of the population for the purposes of the leadership.
b. An empire, like Rome, is able to preside over a variety of differing ethnic groups by exacting symbolic and material tribute from them as recognition of the legitimacy of the leadership group's governance and by extending citizenship in the elite ethnic group to the more cooperative members of the subject peoples. An empire is therefore able to co-opt the most important people in its territory, hold elite membership up as a prize and privilege to the entirety of those peoples, and to regard the elite ethnic group responsible for the continuation of the traditions and institutions of the empire, the premier ethnic group among equals. The United States has been an empire since the time of the Founding Fathers, when it withheld citizenship from Indians and slaves who were living within the geographical confines of the political community but from which full access to the elite ethnic group of the descendants of Englishmen was withheld.
c. A nation state creates an organization to include all members of the status group who are born or naturalized into the geographical area over which it exercises control as citizens or subjects. This gives it greater control of its members because they have official obligations and responsibilities as well as ones which are only culturally enforceable. Nation states treat their members as if they have signed a social contract rather than simply come under the influence of a political community. The following characterizations of nation states are historical explanations because the point at which the development of political organizations can carry the weight of nationhood is subject to a wide range of interpretations since the proof is only in the efficacy, not in the characteristics of those political organizations. It is characteristic of historical arguments that they select a point in the development of an institution or a group, such as the slow evolution of the bureaucratic state, or the rise of the bourgeoisie, as the key point in that evolution, because something important happens forthwith.
Early nation states like France and England were able to make themselves into membership organizations because they had become defined as a single status group inhabiting a single geographical area before the organizational mechanisms that allow a nation state to treat itself as a membership organization had been developed. The Religious Wars in France preceded the development of the legal and tax system that gave France its unity and the Union with Scotland preceded the development of Parliamentary dominance in England, however much the Glorious Revolution had set the scene for the development of that dominance.
The United States began its existence as a nation state that defined itself as a membership organization. This definition conflicts at times with the problems of the United States as an empire. The domination of the early American Republic by its English ethnic group provided a window of opportunity wherein the organization of the nation state as a membership group preceded its need to deal with a wide variety of immigrant ethnic groups who, when they arrived, could then identify themselves with the rights embodied in the Constitution rather than simply with a people or a geography.
Germany, Italy and the Soviet Union became nation states when the organizational mechanisms of government were already highly developed but when problems of diverse ethnic groups within their boundaries had not yet been settled and were not in a period of hiatus, imposed or otherwise. Germany and Italy, indeed, created states as superstructures that would incorporate some ethnic groups and exclude others through warfare, and the Soviet Union through a civil war tried to impose a nation state upon an empire. We have yet to see whether a set of nation states can be forged in the Middle East out of a single ethnicity, the Arab Nation.
Political communities that create equality of status membership create therefore a universal priority of status membership, since status membership already has priority. Such political communities are continually preoccupied with the nature of status membership and its applicability to all features of life, which are supposed to "grow" out of that status. Sects and militant minority groups have uniform membership, while churches and empires allow gradations of citizenship and so encourage disparate loyalties, as well as people who are subservient in some of their statuses even though they are putatively equal in the priority status. This provides flexibility as well as freedom in the form of hypocrisy. Totalitarian regimes are less compromising. They declare a triple gradation of the sect, the population it rules, and the enemy within and without.
Democracies use citizenship as a regulative ideal while acknowledging the call of other loyalties as part of the democratic process, since a citizen of a democracy is able to declare anything a part of their political agenda without being accused of disloyalty. The primacy of citizenship as an indivisible set of rights, a status shared equally by all citizens, is the source of many privileges in democracies, as well as a basis for a system of government, especially because it is abstract and formal and carries no specific demands it except when those are explicitly and formally required by the institutions of law and government.
Violence is only one of the ways in which the priority of the status of citizenship in a government may assert itself, and this becomes a more and more anachronistic way of enforcing citizenship as economic and cultural sanctions replace coercive ones as graded forms for earning compliance. The threat of jail is not as important as the threat of embarrassment or economic penalties for the enforcement of most legislation, and those economic penalties are carried out through civil rather than criminal action. People are positively mobilized to carry out collective tasks rather than threatened with imprisonment, death, or physical abuse for failure to join the military, earn a living, or safeguard others from an infectious disease which one carries. Large scale jailing of felons or drug addicts does not seem to alleviate the social problems associated with such statuses. Appeals to social good will have replaced threats of jail in attempts to curb minor mischief, such as jumping turnstiles or littering streets.
A monopoly over violence is a defining characteristic only of states that see themselves as in perpetual warfare with one another. Nation states, in fact, take on any number of tasks that are defined as ones that can only be performed by the state or are part of the collective good. These may include, at one time or another, raising an army or the creation of religious and economic bureaucracies, which was the case in the empires of the ancient Middle East. More modern states have undertaken the regulation of currency, culture, physical infrastructure, public works, and the health and social welfare of its population.
Nations that operate under democratic aegis do not differ from authoritarian nations because they define the functions of government more narrowly, but because they differ in the procedures they are allowed to use to engage problems of violence or economic inequities. There are limits to the extent to which they can intrude into liberties or rights to property and self that are held to be part of citizenship rather than independent of it and therefore mediated by religion or nature rather than by law. A legal system insists that laws are applied to everyone and that people who are detained or imprisoned have carried out a particular infraction of a particular law as that has been adjudicated in a public process. Authoritarian nations, therefore, are not ones that depend on charismatic leadership or a one party state but ones that dispense with the rule of law. Rights may be regarded as philosophically or religiously inalienable from human personhood, but the recognition of rights is a matter of what legislatures and courts decide to treat as rights, as is very evident in the fact that health care has over the course of the past generation become treated as a right rather than a consumer good, as is evidenced by the fact that long before the passage of the Affordable Care Act, courts have recognized the obligation of hospitals to treat whomever wanders across their threshold.
Governments have learned to intrude into social life so as to alter roles rather than merely use violence to reinforce roles. Five of these techniques are public works, taxation, regulatory legislation, grants, and positive social legislation. These techniques are used by all governments, ancient and modern, although they appear in new guises as the circumstances under which governments operate changes.
a. Space and defense contracts can be thought of as public works projects that meet the John Kenneth Galbraith condition of uselessness and so infuse funds into the economy, while older public works projects were important because they also built the infrastructure for economic development. Modern public works projects are also massive enough to influence even those companies that are not primarily dependant upon government funding. This gave Kennedy leverage over the steel companies.
b. Modern versions of taxation have been effective in drawing off much more wealth than traditional means of tax collection. A cash economy allows direct cash assessment and the bureaucratization of economic life through banks and large corporate organizations allows high rates of tax collection by monitoring and intercepting the paperwork trail. Income taxes and corporate taxes work largely on this principle and will therefore under-tax those whose incomes are not in the open. The tax farmer may have been a necessary rather than inefficient mechanism for taxing crops, which can be hidden or destroyed, at a time when the money income of the aristocratic classes was not subject to taxation.
New levels of taxation have been achieved through payroll taxes. These are a very easy tax to collect because they do not require any action at all on the part of the taxpayer. These taxes have been successfully sold to the public as taxes dedicated to either the elderly or the sick, though these moneys have in fact become part of the general fund.
c. Regulatory legislation is as old as cities and river hydraulics, and so the supervision of trade through regulatory commissions is simply a way of treating such supervision as a technical matter when it is in fact the enforcement of policies that largely favor those who are regulated but which the government does not wish to manage too closely lest it bear responsibility for particular decisions.
d. grants. Governments redistribute wealth by providing wealth and income or privileges to people in selected categories. This has been a time honored practice of government ever since courtiers received the right to establish colonies or become suppliers to the king and I suspect goes all the way back to when Joseph decided who would operate one or another of Egypt’s silos. It is also as modern as agricultural bills which continue to supply farmers with money for growing or not growing crops even when there are more than adequate markets abroad for all the farmers produce and more. These are political decisions which reward some status groups more than others, even though these decisions are most politically contested when they favor groups that are poor or minority. Foreign engineers get priority over peasant immigrants. Why? Yes, they do bring already developed skills with them, but the children of the peasants will develop those skills. Immigration is like logging. You have to look at the long run and plant what will not be reaped for a hundred years.
e. positive social legislation. This is the passage of laws that directly intrude in the social structure so as to correct what has come to be seen as an incorrect balance or ordering of the statuses in the society. A national law to abolish discrimination in public accommodations is an example of positive social legislation, as is action by a state to allow same sex marriage. These actions are very difficult to accomplish because the opposition to them has a chance to mobilize and the action has to be taken in public. But sometimes that is the only way to get things done and it can be regarded as a hallmark of democracy that important social changes take place in this way, even if very significant social changes take place as a result of piece meal legislation, as was the case in controlling smoking through abolishing it in offices and restaurants, or by some indirect measure, as when vaccinations are promoted by making vaccination a condition of entry into elementary school.
Marxist critics of government in general find the first three forms of government intervention oppressive and not serving the interests of the poorer classes because they move money directly into the pockets of the classes that will create infrastructures, jobs, and organizations, rather than into the hands of the people who build the railroads, work the jobs and man the organizations, as if the process of organization has no merit at all, which is what Marx thought when he characterized capitalists as mere oppressors and government officials as mere functionaries. Those who manage large organizations do tend to take a considerable cut off the top, but the working class and those who theorize in their name do not appreciate that there is any kind of work worthy of the name that is not manual or alienating. Making the economy run is not considered a necessary function.
Populists and anarchists in particular think that these organizational functions can be dispensed with and that the reason there is so much bad governmental policy is because all governments do is serve the interests of those who organize the economy. Their case becomes stronger when one considers the numerous occupations-- stock speculator, investment banker, junk bond salesman-- that are invented for the purported purpose of making the economy more efficient by making money more fluid, but who reap short term profits at the expense of long term service to the economy as a whole. False consciousness about the role of managers results from a lack of social imagination or a deliberate unwillingness, as in Marx's case, to consider such roles as work. Issues of social organization are real, however, even if they are invisible, and even if for most people work or jobs just appear and do not give away that they are the result of a social construction of roles.
The last two functions of government have been given special importance by the welfare state, even though Rome gave grants of bread and circuses, and the role of slave or wife was the subject of positive legislation in ancient societies. The problem with grants is that they by and large do not serve their purported purpose, and so become increasingly difficult to defend to the public at large. Welfare programs provide checks, but do not alleviate poverty, though social security programs which also provide checks are still socially acceptable even though these checks do not abrogate death because the social security program provides its grants to a more socially favored clientele.
Grants to individuals gain a bad reputation because they do not seem to immediately alter the person's social class, but may simply sustain them in the poverty class or underclass, while need tested grants seem intrusive in the lives of the middle class who may qualify for them in the form of college scholarship aid or nursing home assistance. Categorical grants would therefore seem easier to administer and less intrusive, but the public seems reluctant to accept grants that may be assigned by ethnic category, even though these overlap with poverty, or to the elderly, since the "rich" should not receive social security, even though the number who do so is not significant.
Congress is unwilling to provide grants for achieved rather than ascribed categories, such as merit scholarships, or to educational programs with proven results, or to hospitals that sustain people at home, because that would seem to be giving money to providers rather than those provided for, and so seem less a form of charity, which is the way such grants are justified, rather than as ways of improving the functioning of public services, and because achieved categories seem more difficult to measure, and to favor the already well to do, though a program could easily enough be designed to provide money to those who are outstanding within certain contexts, such as students in ghetto schools, or one nursing home within a set of nursing homes.
For their part, minority groups and other lobbying groups are not likely to support achievement based grants because of their trade union philosophy, which is that they all suffer or prosper as a group rather than as individuals, and prefer to rely on the positive social legislation of the sixties which led to the redefinition of blacks as full citizens and where a number of other interest groups, such as women and the elderly, became recognized as groups whose interests had to be taken into account.
Positive social legislation, such as the Civil Rights Acts of the 1960's, does have profound consequences, so much so that legislatures shy away from taking firm stands on consequential issues, leaving matters of abortion and the like to the Supreme Court or the states, since the legislators are more interested in reelection than promoting the views they bring with them to Congress. This is a major issue for political democracy.
The decline of the cities in the l960's and l970's is a case study of the significance of the intervention of government in social life and how the various kinds of governmental intervention blend together. As a historical matter, the role of government was sufficient even if not necessary for the burning out of American cities. That short era, with its images of fire, mobs, and desolate lots, and its introduction of "Watts" and the "South Bronx" into the international vocabulary as descriptions of a war like ruin created as a result of peace-time domestic economic and social pressures, is a historical watershed in America's understanding of itself as an endlessly more prosperous society and one which can deal with the problems created by its underclass.
The public works project instrumental in the decline of the cities was the interstate highway system which made long distance commuting beyond the subway lines to new scatter site developments possible. This was funded by the Interstate Highway National Defense Act of l957 which spent some 80 billion dollars on the construction of highways. States had to contribute ten cents of every dollar of federal support to meet what were thought possible Constitutional objections to such massive intrusion by the Federal government into what were thought of as state matters.
The new highways connected the new suburbs that were being built for the new middle class that had returned from the war and graduated from city slums. Their housing was subsidized by long term low interest mortgages guaranteed by the federal government through a number of agencies, and through tax legislation which favored home owners by allowing them to deduct interest on mortgage payments (the largest part of the mortgage payments in the first half of the life of the mortgage). The regulators of mass transit opted for road rather than rail transportation.
These programs suited a population which imagined American prosperity to mean suburban living, and so the programs seemed non-controversial, even though they promoted white flight from the cities at the same time as non-white minorities were arriving in the cities. The drain on tax revenues from the cities was accompanied by the rise in a population more dependant on public services which continued to be largely funded by local and state tax levies. State and local governments are therefore in a continual budget crisis broken only by periods of high prosperity, such as was generated in the Northeast during the period of financial creativity during the l980's and the 1990’s.
Cities burned, in part, to get the political process moving towards positive legislation. Rioters tended to be upwardly mobile rather than underclass, and so seemed to have a political rather than a purely criminal agenda. The white powers that be would be forced to reconstruct the inner cities if they became sufficiently destroyed, just as the government had rebuilt Western Europe after the desolation of World War II. Creating war time results without a war would provide leverage against landlords who abandoned buildings and the drug addicts and others who did not properly care for the dwellings they inhabited who either proceeded or followed hard upon the deterioration of landlord services to buildings.
These areas began to be rebuilt, however, only a generation later, through city and private investment, when a new business cycle made the property valuable again, when they had to serve once again as bedroom communities for the working class now employed in white collar rather than manufacturing occupations, and when new and new kinds of industry, such as small scale manufacture, health, and education, move into these areas because of low rents or to serve local residents whether or not they are subsidized to do so by tax incentives. The biggest employers in the Bronx are now hospital complexes, which are the beneficiaries of government grants.