Reminds me of Mike Davis' City of Quartz... From Kausfiles, (& I can't find a permalink....) "Disintegrating L.A., Part 2: Neolib urban theorist Joel Kotkin recognizes the distinct possibility that the city of Los Angeles will fragment through a series of successful secessions. He's for it! ... Everything Kotkin says (about L.A.'s failures) makes sense, but he doesn't deal with the key objection to secession -- namely what happens to the heavily-poor rump once all the more affluent areas have bailed out? (Again, don't think the rich West Side won't move to form its own nice "right-sized" town once the middle-class San Fernando Valley shows the way.) ... Maybe there are reasons the South Central ghetto would improve if the city it's in lost its middle and upper-class tax base. But let's hear them. ... And why won't those "entrenched" public employee unions quickly entrench themselves in the new towns as well? ..."