WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Blue Blight Syndrome Hits Scranton, PA. “Scranton’s problems reflect the combination of long term economic decline, a failure to re-imagine and reform the way government works, the usual failed urban redevelopment boondoggles and shortsighted behavior by municipal employees and politicians who pander to them. In other words, Scranton is a fairly typical if unusually unlucky American city. As time goes by, we can expect more cities to come to this pass with all the human suffering and unfairness that comes out of this kind of crisis. The only way out is a much more sweeping program of national and local reform than is yet on the table; the longer we wait the harder this will be.”