'Nothing distinguishes pension debt in a municipal bankruptcy case from any other debt."
These thirteen words come from a ruling this week by US Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes. In strictly legal terms, they're part of a larger decision that does little more than confirm the obvious: Detroit is bankrupt.
But make no mistake. The judge has set off a seismic shock that will reverberate far outside Detroit. For he has confirmed something fairly radical in the world of public employees: the law applies to workers for a bankrupt city much the same way it does to workers for a bankrupt company.
Cue the unionistas to start burning tires in the streets of Detroit. Because it wasn't frigged up enough already.