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Free Minds & Free Markets

Ayn Rand's Revenge

What Reshma Saujani's insurgent campaign says about the future of New York politics

This primary season, a young woman named Reshma Saujani waged an audacious, well-funded challenge to an 18-year veteran liberal congresswoman, Democratic Rep. Carolyn Maloney, in New York’s 14th District, based on Manhattan’s East Side. The district’s aging old guard closed ranks around the uninspiring incumbent, and Saujani came up far short.

But by speaking up for voices in a younger, entrepreneurial generation that is slowly but inexorably altering the district’s dynamics—those who found themselves drawn to her message of allowing New York to grow into “the next Silicon Valley”—Saujani’s brash bid might mark the first stirrings of Ayn Rand’s revenge.

The East Side of Manhattan was Ayn Rand’s playground. Home to soaring skyscrapers and behemoth banks, Robber Baron manses and “Mad Men” ad agencies, Rand declared this locus of America’s financial might to be the ultimate testament to human achievement, incontrovertible evidence of man’s conquest of nature.

This swath of New York City was the only “rational” place for Rand to call home. She established residence in a high rise apartment and held her “salons” there. She secured space in  her “symbolically heroic Empire State Building”—in Murray Rothbard’s mock-Randian vernacular—for the Nathaniel Brandon Institute, her vehicle for Objectivist proselytizing.

The real people who actually lived in those skyscrapers and worked in those big banks, however, Rand found lacking. Politically, they expressed themselves in favor of policies that Rand found morally abhorrent and which she feared would be ruinous to the American capitalist system whose fruits padded their bank accounts.

Back in Rand’s heyday, the “Silk Stocking District,” as the Upper East Side’s congressional district has been historically known, was dominated by liberal Republicans the likes of Barry Goldwater’s nemeses, Nelson Rockefeller, and Mayor John V. Lindsay, whose audacious social experimentation left New York an “ungovernable city.”  

Lindsay and his cohorts were Protestant, well-educated, wealthy, and well-bred. They were Republicans because they found the Catholic, working class, ethnic-based politics of New York’s Democratic bosses profoundly distasteful. Union rabble-rousing may have turned them off, but these elites worried about an unfettered market, too, and assumed that the best and brightest among their ranks could solve society’s problems by controlling the levers of government.  

By 1992, Republicanism was no longer fashionable and the district had grown more demographically diverse, but the district remained a bastion of “limousine liberalism.” Then-Rep. Bill Green, a Jewish Republican with a patrician, WASPish air about him, could no longer hold on, even if his name was listed on both the New York Liberal Party line as well as the GOP in the voting booth. Green was defeated in a redrawn district by Carolyn Maloney, a city councilwoman from the Upper East Side. Two years later, in the Republican tsunami of 1994, a Republican-Liberal city councilman spent record millions, but the Upper East Side stood aloof from the rest of America, and defied the Republican tide. Maloney took two-thirds of the vote and has not been challenged seriously since.

This year, irate at being passed over for appointment to Hillary Clinton’s Senate seat, Maloney made noises about challenging appointed Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand from the left, and amped up her liberal rhetoric, incorporating the Democrats’ Wall Street-bashing demagoguery. In the end, she dropped her challenge, and decided to seek reelection, but this didn’t sit well with some of her newer, younger constituents—many of whom work in the technology sector, and who were open to a fresher voice speaking for them in Washington, one that might show a little more respect towards the industries that butter their bread.

Enter Reshman Saujani, a young woman with an impressive resume and a compelling story. The daughter of Indian immigrants who fled Idi Amin’s Uganda, Saujani worked as an attorney for hedge funds and raised bundles for Hillary Rodham Clinton’s presidential run. Tapping her Wall Street ties, Clinton connections, and roots in the Indian-American community, she amassed a formidable war chest. On the bio page of her website, Saujani vowed to take a softer tone in contrast to Maloney’s increasingly shrill populist orthodoxy, promising to be a “bridge builder who can align the ambitions of Wall Street with the needs of Main Street.”

When Saujani sat down with me at the Roger Williams Hotel on Madison Avenue before the election, the candidate was still in spin mode, mopping up after an acrimonious radio debate with the incumbent. A slew of press stories had had portrayed Saujani as an apologist for Wall Street. “Saujani embraces Wall Street in bid to unseat Rep. Maloney,” was the headline of a profile in The Washington Post. Saujani was determined to counter that perception.

Her campaign had been “consistent from the beginning” in favor of Wall Street reform, Saujani said. She wanted to focus on hammering Maloney for “corrupt” fundraising practices, conjuring up the rhetoric of “reform,” a time-tested Silk Stocking “goo-goo” vote-getter, the line that helped Republican-Liberal office holders hold on as Democrats encroached.

When I interrupted to suggest that perhaps she shared, with the bulk of her constituents, a “more nuanced” view of Wall Street than her entrenched opponent, Saujuani concurred. The thought prompted her to share that more than just defending Wall Street, she favored policies that would allow New York City to become a “place where small businesses can flourish,” to foster entrepreneurship and innovation. As she dashed off to her next appointment, Saujani mentioned that I might like to stop by that night’s New York Tech Meetup, to hear more about her agenda for economic growth.

After some conniving, I secured a ticket to an auditorium full of young “Creative Class” types, eager to exploit trends in social media for fun and profit. Saujani walked up to the podium and declared that she was running for Congress because she thinks that “New York City has the ability to become the next Silicon Valley.” She offered some proactive ideas but said she knew when to hold up, “because sometimes the government shouldn’t just do anything, and I’m sure a lot of people in the crowd agree with me.” Her vow to fight for zero capital gains taxes for investors in new ventures like social media drew scattered, but spirited, applause.

There are some lessons here for libertarians in the Obama era. Affluent and educated voters show no signs of shaking off the Democratic label. Just like the Silk Stocking liberal Republican WASPs of yore, it’s simply not a sign of sophistication to countenance socially conservative beliefs. But there are limits to how much the folks who drive the economy will accept meddling in the economy when it starts to stifle their innovation and whop them in the wallet. Libertarians shouldn’t be afraid to appeal to this segment’s social liberalism—and take credit for being out front on issues of personal freedom decades before those stances became fashionable—and argue that government meddling in the boardroom can be just harmful as meddling in the bedroom. A dose of “liberaltarianism” here may be just what the doctor ordered.

Yes, Saujani was clobbered, and by a four-to-one margin, which is surprising considering all the cash she collected. The margin was probably distorted by the fact that her voters were younger, newer to New York, less ideologically liberal (on economics, at least), and decidedly less partisan: folks who do not turn out in force during quiet primary elections. But her base is growing, and while Maloney’s supporters may still lord over Democratic primaries, they are beginning to recede in the general population of Manhattan’s East Side just as the liberal Republican WASPs died out a generation before. In that regard, Saujani might be the “political entrepreneur” who took electoral risks that will yield dividends in the future. Furthermore, she convinced young, affluent, and influential Silk Stocking voters to agree that “sometimes the government shouldn’t just do anything.”

Notably, Saujani attraced supported from hip hop mogul Russell Simmons and Nate Westheimer, the man who filled that NYU auditorium with young entrepreneurs for the New York Tech MeetUp. The New York Observer tapped Westheimer as one of “The Insurgents of 2010,” for his efforts to spur investment in New York’s burgeoning tech sector.

Westheimer reminded the crowd that no other candidate felt it worth their time one week out from primary day to address this group of New York City entrepreneurs. Westheimer told me, via email, that he was making a rare electoral endorsement because “Reshma is different because she came to the table agenda-less, except the agenda to advance New York's technology sector,” and that agenda includes sometimes getting government out of the way of innovation.

Saujani has vowed to run again, maybe when New York’s tech sector has begun to blossom and its East Side electorate is ready for her message. Her upstart campaign looks like it may have been ahead of the game, and could be the starting point for those skyscraper dwellers and hedge fund traders on a road to electoral redemption, Ayn Rand-style.

John Vaught LaBeaume is a Washington Examiner Blogs contributor and co-editor of ElectionDissection.com.

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  • ||

    10$ says Reshma Saujani will move to a better business climate before the next election.

  • ||

    Threadjack:

    Pretty piss poor performance for a group that cites freedom of speech and expression as one of its central tenets.

  • ||

    “the next Silicon Valley” = bad business journalism cliche. Where bad = horrific.

  • ||

    New York City, NY is too played out to be the next anything.

  • ||

    The next Detroit?

  • ||

    I'm feeling stirrings, alright. In my pants.

  • Corn Sugar||

    Classy. At least it took 3 comments for it to happen.

  • ||

    Yo Frook, find your own turf to scold.

  • ||

    Absolutement! If the scolding doesn't come from Tulpa, I don't even feel it.

    And I wonder if Reshma may rhyme with 'kiss me.' Rev up horribly cheesy 90's romantic tune from that Christian pop band.

  • ||

    You guys still have your pants on? Nothing gets my goodies worked up faster than a self-described "Yale scholar, community activist, and committed Democrat".... or was it bowels.. whatever.

  • ||

    She's kinda hot, but she's no Lobster Girl.

  • ||

    She's a definite shift from the trend. I'm used to left-wing harpies looking like Hillary Clinton or Nancy Pelosi.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Newcular Titties will do that to you

  • ||

    I'd be lying if I said that I searched for her on google images before I finished reading the article. The world needs hot libertarians, dammit.

  • ||

    The world needs hot libertarian men. As of right now I don't see any.

  • SIV||

    HaHaHa! You li'l debil

  • ||

    Ayn Rand's electoral revenge? Embarrassingly bad literature and blatant nonsense parading as philosophy is going to enter the electoral stage and take revenge on what, good taste and rational thinking? Yikes!

  • ||

    "Embarrassingly bad literature and blatant nonsense parading as philosophy is going to enter the electoral stage and take revenge on what, good taste and rational thinking? Yikes!"

    I'm so glad a Marxist is finally able to admit how bad he is.

  • ||

    It's Ayn Rand's revenge...FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE!!!

    BEWARE OF ZOMBIE AYN RAND!!!!!!!!!

  • ||

    Rand vs. Zombies?

  • ||

    Revenge of the Randy Randroids

  • ||

    Attaching Ayn Rand's name to this article seems like a stretch to me. She lived in New York for a while and...umm...?

  • ||

    Alright Max, I'll give you +1 for wit, but you're still a douche bag.

  • ||

    ARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARF!!!!!!!!!!

  • ||

    Rand declared this locus of America’s financial might to be the ultimate testament to human achievement, incontrovertible evidence of man’s conquest of nature.

    More like incontrovertible evidence of the efficacy of man's mind to deal with reality.

  • ||

    Rand gave us Greenspan. How much revenge does she need?

  • ||

    I've read a few aricles Greenspan wrote as a much younger man, when he was one of Rand's associates back in the 1960's. If you compare the ideas he expressed then with the policies he supported later in life, you'd never know it was the same guy. I mean, someone who was a believer in the gold standard and sound money ends up running a monetary scam like the Federal Reserve System?

  • ||

    Kind of like reading Paul Krugman the economist and Pauly Krugnuts the political hack?

  • ||

    Greenspan was a Manchurian Candidate, and I think Bush dealt him a Queen of Diamonds while playing gin somewhere in the middle of his second term.

  • ||

    Does that mean Nancy Pelosi is Angela Lansbury?

  • ||

    Well, she's no Janet Leigh.

  • ||

    But who will step up and be Frank Sinatra?

  • ||

    IDK. Maybe Larry Summers was supposed to play that part and fucked it up.

  • ||

    I'd love to hear someone say about Greenspan, "It's not as if Alan's hard to like. He's impossible to like!"

  • ||

    Orzag was definitely James Edwards.

  • ||

    I got that wrong. As dumb as those two are, they were most likely playing Slap Jack.

  • ||

    Great. Now you've mentioned both Rand and Greenspan, so Reason's going to have to run that dominatrix picture again.

  • ||

    Is mentioning those two on H&R kind of like saying "Candyman" three times in front of a mirror?

    'cept we get a Dom pic instead of a conjured slasher?

    Kind of?

  • ||

    Biggie Smalls. Biggie Smalls. Biggie...

  • ||

    C'mon you guys - this is a stupid game...

  • ||

    >Rand gave us Greenspan.

    Nope. Greenspan sold out. Rand quit having anything to do with him by the late 1960s.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Its all worthless. Why try.

  • ||

    Libertarians shouldn’t be afraid to appeal to this segment’s social liberalism

    You can't do that, because they don't have that.

    What they have is a desire—unquenchable, and, so, seemingly "progressive," because it always wants more, again—to use the state to push around people they hate. That desire is lightly cloaked in libertarian rhetoric, occasionally, but usually only by libertarians who identify with or want to join "this segment." Speaking for themselves, they typically come right out with the fascist "History Vill Erase You!" shit they really believe.

    "This segment" hates "social conservatives," for reasons wholly other than their (mostly only alleged) conservatism, so their "social liberalism"—really, support for an identity of law and "social liberalism," which isn't a "liberal" thing at all—is an ad hoc means to put a boot on the collective face of the enemy class.

    Libertarians should be calling it out as the conservative (in the bad old sense) ugliness it is, not licking the boot clean.

    (I'm pretending you're mistaken or confused about this "liberaltarian" shit, rather than just pissing in our faces. I know that's stupid.)

  • ||

    Nonsense.

  • ||

    You can't tar all liberals with the same brush. Some of them think Liberal means free love etc. as much as some conservatives think Conservative means free markets etc..

    Though I do agree that they are a bit snobby and self-superior about it.

  • ||

    I'm not that impressed with the argument being made. Namely that this portends a change in New York politics. A four to one beatdown at the polls is not a sign of change.

  • ||

    What is with all these PILF'S?

  • ||

    You make it sound like there's more than one.

  • ||

    You just have a higher standards.

  • ||

    And here I thought libertarianism is in favor of personal freedom anyway. What needs to change?

  • ||

    NYC will not be "the next Silicon Valley" as long as the mafia controlled democrats are in charge.
    This article is a whole bunch of horseshit.
    Techonology can be created anywhere in the USA today,so why do it in one of the highest taxed cities in one of the highest taxed states?

  • ||

    Not only that, but you have to be friendly to startups and entrepreneurs, which NYC is not; not just because of regulations, but because of commercial space rental costs and other overhead.

    Silicon Valley is one of the most expensive places to live in the country, and the only reason it's still a big startup hub is that so many tech people are already there. Seattle is second, because its costs are much lower and you have the same kind of tech talent concentration. Plus Seattle is somewhat friendly to startups in order to encourage them.

  • ||

    ... the only reason it's still a big startup hub is that so many tech people are already there.

    That and the fact that non-compete agreements are unenforceable in California.

  • ||

    Hey, what about me?

    I not that weird.

    Not anymore...

  • ||

    What makes Seattle so friendly to startups - besides cheap coffee and a climate that forces your employees to remain inside for 10 months out of the year?

  • ||

    There are certain tax breaks and ceilings that Seattle (or possibly WA as a whole) gives that allow startups to operate on a bit more of a shoestring here; I work for one and other than a few stupid things, the city mostly stays out of our way.

    It's probably more that Seattle isn't actively hostile to startups like some other places are, combined with being the location of Microsoft, Amazon, UW, and the extensive Seattle startup community.

  • ||

    The lack of a state income tax doesn't hurt either.

  • ||

    > the only reason it's still a big startup hub is that so many tech people are already there.

    Speaking as one who lives here, I disagree. There's a cultural advantage in California, that goes all the way back to the gold rush days, which is that it's not shameful to fail here, only to quit trying. I know more than an average number of rich people, and very few of them got rich on their first try.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Plus Seattle has only had 15 homocides so far this year. What a small number for such a large city.

  • ||

    Reason spends 90% of it's time ripping anything 'libertarian-ish' on the right, but we get some drippy, over-the-top calls for 'Rand's Revenge!!!' over a *Democrat* who got destroyed in the primary? Natch.

    Basically Reason's become The New Republic, just with better economic takes. Hey, whatever keeps those cocktail party invites flowing...

  • ||

    Sad but pretty true.

  • ||

    I'll gladly celebrate a Democrat taking a free-market line; I don't want to seem I'm reflexive knocking that.

    But when it's an all-out snark-out contest over Republican stories, and yet a fawning cry of 'Rand Return's' (with absolutely minimal political specifics) over a gal who got *19%* of the vote? C'mon. If it's snark for some, make it snark for all. Don't suddenly soft-peddle 'liberaltarian' stuff and except readers not to pick up on that.

  • ||

    With every word I agree with you more.

  • ||

    While relatively attractive physically, her stances are little more than typical team-blue bullshit. So she wants to move tech to her city. Big deal. What person on the campaign trail isn't saying the same thing?

    Notice her zero capital gains ends at new ventures in areas like "social media?" How about zero capital gains on all investments? That would be a breath of fresh air.

    How about talking about how to stop runaway taxation in her city? About the demolition of individual freedom?

    Nope. This one's not worth the time. I'd rather listen to Christine O'Donnell tell me she wants to shrink the government.

  • ||

    "relatively attractive physically"

    Are you nuts? She is gorgeous.

  • ||

    the pic reason used is an exceptional pic of her. check out her facebook page, and it's not quite so appetizing.

    and, yes. i am shallow.

  • ||

    http://www.observer.com/files/full/reshma_1.jpg

  • ||

    This article is some weak shit. There's no actual demographic/poll data given to support the authors contention that a shift is underway. And then there is this "liberaltarianism" shit which only lives on in the demented minds of Brink Lindsey and Will Wilkinson. "Cent" symbol above explains very well why liberaltarianism is bullshit.

  • ||

    LaBeaume is really reaching with this one.

    Reshma raises oodles of money, gets her ass handed to her in an anti-incumbency year, and this loss (read: gruesome failure)portends the opening volley of a Randian revolution down the road. A bit "300", innit?

    Nice try.

    Five bucks says in 2 years she's married to a nice Indian boy, and she's a field officer and campaign bundler for Obama's 2012 reelection campaign ("Yes We Can! No, I Really Mean It This Time!")

  • ||

    Thank you, come again.

  • ||

    Just be patient! We need to give Obama time.

    I'm thinking twenty-five to life.

  • Shannon Love||

    I am afraid that New York and other deep blue cities are doomed. They simply have the wrong political culture.

    I think we can divide political cultures (regardless of transitory labels) as either making-culture or taking-culture.

    Making-culture focuses on generating material wealth by fostering commerce. Think California back in the 50s and 60s where government was focused on infrastructure and education needed to foster business or Texas today.

    Taking-culture focuses on taking from the economically-productive. They pay very little attention to using government to foster commerce but instead see government as a tool to appropriate the wealth produced by commerce for the greater good. People in unions, for example, spend most their time trying to pry more money of employers instead of trying to make themselves more productive and their jobs more secure.

    New York has a phenomenally powerful taking-culture. No doubt this is owing to New York's vast disparities in wealth the flight of its middle-class. It is becoming a city of the super rich and the super poor. The poor increasingly concentrate on taking from the rich with no apparent awareness that the rich don't have to live in New York.

    New York and other major cities no longer have any primary economic reason for being. These cities exist in the first place for the solely because of the historical need to have people in close physical proximity so they could communicate. Now that people no longer have to be in close physical proximity to communicate, there is no reason to stack them all on top one another in skyscrapers.

    These cities are costing on inertia but the takers don't understand that. They keep thinking that if they just take a little more, everything will magically revert to 1955. Their unremitting hostility to economic-creatives means that they will adapt to changing reality. They can never admit that need economic-creatives in order to have someone to take from.

    Because of its cultural cachet, New York might survive as a museum city like Paris but the other great urban cores are pretty much doomed long term. They are going to have to undergo a radical change in political culture but after 80+ of increasing dominance by takers, I don't think they can. Detriot, Gary and Cleveland are the harbingers for the fate of former Great Cities of the American Northeast.

  • ||

    Now that people no longer have to be in close physical proximity to communicate, there is no reason to stack them all on top one another in skyscrapers.

    Video games are the last and ultimate art form. As this fact plays itself out it will have very interesting effects in the real world. One aspect will be the loss of LA and NY as American cultural Meccas.

  • ||

    You are so fucking retarded that it's not even funny.

    First of all, you are the exemplification of TEAM RED TEAM BLUE; just look at the way you write everything. Every fucking sentence is "us" and "them". Your tribe and their tribe.

    Secondly, have you ever even fucking been to NYC? The super-rich and the super-poor? Do you know how stupid that sounds? You do realize that there are a ton of single people in NYC making ok to good livings, and are living there even though it's expensive because they have no dependents (yet) and are young and having a good time? Or all the people who live in the boroughs and are definitely "middle class"?

    It's stunning how you will write your idiotic essays with tone of proclamation, implying that you actually know what the fuck you're talking about, when you don't.

    Maybe if you stopped loving the drone of your own somnolent prose and started thinking outside your partisan box, you'd see that.

  • ||

    i take your points, episiarch. but, i have to say, as someone who lived a few years in different parts of manhattan, there's something to be said for the idea that NYC is living off the cache of old glory. i liked shannon's point about NYC ending up a museum city like Paris (though, I've never been to Paris).

    i used to think NYC truly is the greatest city in the world. it really is a unique sort of playland. but, until they do something about those state and local taxes, that place is a craphole to me. and, i have to say, i can't freakin' stand so many of the fauxlitists who live in that city sniffing their assfarts. especially on the upper west side.

  • ||

    You can dislike the people there all you want. It doesn't change the fact that Shannon's narrative is completely wrong, and is 100% the TEAM RED talking point of "TEAM BLUE cities are fucked!", instead of being any kind of actual analysis backed with knowledge.

    Which is why I called her on it.

  • ||

    Her? I think Shannon Love is a guy, dude.

  • ||

    Epi meant "her" in the gay sense.

  • ||

    Uncle Ricoooo, getting tough with the women!!!2!

    Fucking jerkoff.

  • ||

    So you're saying that women are too delicate to hold their own in a...fucking internet discussion? Shannon's an idiot, and you're a misogynist. Hilarious.

  • ||

    I'm a misogynist? You should read your own posts Epi.

  • ||

    Really? Go find some that has me being a misogynist.

  • ||

    Alright, probably not. You make not like what Love posts, but at least she is fairly polite, and she isn't like the vile trolls around here like Tony, Chad and this new zero "frog in a pot".

    Being a liberatarian isn't license for being an asshole. But if you're one of the these Lindsay/Wilkinson liberaltarians (TEAM PINK!!) then that might explain your behavior.

  • ||

    If you can't handle a little rough discourse, you might want to reconsider being on the internetz.

  • ||

    "If you can't handle a little rough discourse adolescent name-calling, you might want to reconsider being on the internetz short bus."

    FTFY

  • Shannon Love||

    Rough Discourse?

    Surely, you jest.

    Rough Discourse is discourse the makes you think and question your previously existing ideas or at least makes you struggle to justify them.

    Emotional outburst and insults are not "rough" in the least, especially on the internet. Instead, they merely come off as a toddler's temper tantrum.

  • ||

    "Being a liberatarian isn't license for being an asshole."

    Bullshit, asscunt.

  • ||

    Being a Chicago resident, I agree with Epi. All of that Red State claptrap is so much bunk not even worth dismissing.

    I thought Shannon was an Irish dude kind of Shannon, so what's the deal with the misogyny charges?

  • ||

    It's just Epi talking out of the box again.

  • ||

    Lol, pogo, you are a clown. You've never known of any female named Shannon?

  • ||

    Shannon is not a gender specific name except in certain areas of the United States. It was once asked if Shannon Love was a girl Shannon, or an Irish dude Shannon a few years ago. I would have sworn the correct answer was Irish dude Shannon.

    Why am I explaining this too you?

  • ||

    If I recall correctly, it was determined that Shannon Love isn't a name, but rather, a description or activity.

  • ||

    Minneapolis is a very blue city and it is thriving big time.

  • Shannon Love||

    This would be the same Chicago that is currently imploding economically and whose police force is in disarray.

    Before you shoot off that I don't know what I am talking about, I would tell you that I blog at Chicagoboyz.net and a lot of blog mates live in Chicago. They don't share your rosy view of their city.

  • ||

    Who is being Rosie, Mr (or is that Ms.) Scenario? Chicago has always been a hellhole, and I've done as much as anyone to make it that way, but what you are missing is that Chicago thrives on being a hellhole. To think that it is uniquely so at this time and juncture is extremely naive.

  • Shannon Love||

    Actually, I intentionally keep my sex undetermined merely for the amusement that threads like this give me.

    I think it shows how focused many people are on identities instead of ideas. Why should my sex matter to this or any other political conversation?

  • ||

    I'm now leaning to girl, or highly effeminate guy, given the pretension of moral superiority in that last post.

  • Shannon Love||

    The super-rich and the super-poor? Do you know how stupid that sounds?

    New York has the It has grown worse in recent years. This affects all the old dense urban cores but New York has the added top effect of having so many very rich. I can spend the time to find the links if this is a great mystery for you.

    All researchers agree the major driving factor is middle-class flight. Urban cores are to expensive for the middle-class for the dwindling amenities they provide. California seems to have duplicated the same effect statewide. The result is a population distribution of extremes.

    I'm sorry I offended you but the numbers don't lie. The middle-class has been voting with their feet for the last 40 years and the trend is accelerating disturbingly. I fear cities like New York might hit a sudden tipping point were they suddenly begin to lose their rich as well. That would be devastating.

    Political culture matters. Regions that have making cultures thrive and those that have taking cultures whither. New York and California used to have making cultures and now they have taking cultures. They used to be prosperous growing places where people migrated to improve their lives. Now they a stagnant and declining places where people emigrate from.

    Adam Smith said there was a lot of ruin in a nation and there is also a lot of ruin in a great city. This causes people who live there not to see the gradual deterioration that occurs over the decades. However, even you should be able to see that New York isn't the kind of city of it was prior to the 60s.

    Sorry you don't like my writing style. I image that tonight as a I try to fall asleep, the thought your disapproval will keep me awake for several entire seconds.

  • ||

    I'm sure that you can just read your posts back to yourself and it'll put you to sleep in seconds.

    1. You didn't answer my question as to whether you have ever even been to New York, let alone live there, which is a pretty good indicator that...you haven't done either. So once again, I don't care what your TEAM RED talking points tell you to say; it's just not true. I'm not claiming there is a massive middle class there, but statements like "the super rich and the super poor" are flat out idiotic.

    2. You provide those links, if you can find them. I'd love to see what they say...and what their source is. I have a guess as to the predominant TEAM they're from.

    3. New York won't be going anywhere soon. I can only describe your incomprehensible belief in that as...wishful thinking.

    4. And once again, your entire post is littered with TEAM RED TEAM BLUE bullshit warfare. "Making cultures and taking cultures"? Give me a fucking break.

    It amazes me how people who are partisan to the bone are unable to see or admit that everything they do--everything--is colored through that prism. You're like ultra-feminists, who see "male gaze" in everything, or people who see racism in chocolate milk. You're so twisted by your obsession that you cannot see reality. I don't envy you.

  • ||

    "I don't envy you."

    But I am obsessed with you.

  • ||

    Staten Island, Manhattan, and Brooklyn. K? Lived in everything from squats to condos with park views.

    Shannon is right(as the New York link confirms). And, as we all know, that's big TEAM RED periodical, no?

    And RED/BLUE aside, there is something in the political culture of NY that thinks taxes can be continuously piled on the heads of their rich to help provide for their poor without any realization that the rich can just leave.

    If they do that will turn the current 'playland'--a museum city that's fun, into something more like Colonial Williamsburg--a place where 'fun' is pretending that the past is now.

  • Shannon Love||

    I provide facts and cogent cause and effects arguments. You respond with, well, not much of anything besides some little strange claim that I am making "Yea, for my team!" arguments.

    If my arguments are just "TEAM RED talking points" then you should be able to easily refute them with data taken from relatively neutral sources like the census bureau.

    I think it very telling that you just assume my arguments are wrong without bothering to even attempt to explain the factual basis for my error.

    Let me answer your questions:

    (1) No, I've never been to New York but I have spent time in Chicago. However, merely visiting or living in New York would tell me nothing about the long term patterns affecting the city. Personal experiences are anecdotal, only data gives you the big picture.

    Besides, do you restrict your observations and assertions solely to areas in which you have lived? Does someone have to spend 5 years in Detroit to know that something is seriously wrong with the city?

    (2) I provided one link from a leftwing New York source that quotes widely acknowledged census data. Unless you provide me some concrete data for your argument why should I spend time doing research that you yourself should have already done to come to your conclusions.

    You have actually looked at the relevant data before shooting your mouth off, right?

    (3) You are correct, a geographical and political entity called New York City will be around for centuries. However, it will be an empty shell of its once majestic and influential self. It will be a place of stagnation and poverty decorated with a few cultural icons. Once the financial companies and the super wealthy migrate away, what does New York have going for it?

    Like I said, the practical reason for such cities to exist has disappeared. You should be making a counter argument that New York is still a great place to do business and a place where people still migrate to make it big. You should be trotting out stats showing how the middle-class is migrating into New York. Merely, scoffing isn't refutation.

    (4) I am sorry if my argument about political cultures confused you. I suppose if you are a Marxist or a crypto-marxist who believes that the wealth of a community just appears without human agency as the result of natural forces, then an argument that the overall cultural attitudes of region profoundly affect its economy will seem nonsensical.

    BTW, "Give me a fucking break." is not the devastating retort you seem to believe it is.

    It amazes me how people who are partisan to the bone are unable to see or admit that everything they do--everything--is colored through that prism.

    Right back at you. I at least attempt to provide cogent arguments and facts. I could be wrong but at least I try to give you something besides emotion and hauteur.

    I hate to tell you but for the perspective of someone who doesn't have a dog is this fight, you will come off as a raving loon who doesn't even understand my arguments enough to even begin to refute them.

  • ||

    Episiarch gets served!

  • ||

    New York has a habit of re-inventing itself. I suspect it will do again.

    Of course, such re-invention is made much easier with lower taxes & fewer regulations.

  • ||

    Not to mention that NY is only viable because its the center of legal counterfitting. Get rid of fiat money and NYC would quickly become Detroit.

  • ||

    So how do offshore manufacturers bury US competitors and buy their customers and production facilities? With a little help from their governments. Again the glass industry furnishes us with the example:

    "...the non-U.S. manufacturers had boatloads of glass sitting offshore, waiting to find customers to whom they would sell and deliver the glass, while the U.S. manufacturers were working on the traditional manufacturing scheduling system which produced glass to fill orders. The glass sitting on shipping vessels offshore had been manufactured in plants which were subsidized by their governments, and those plants were making glass whether or not the company had orders for it.

    http://scottonglass.wordpress......t-layoffs/

    So libertarian genius's how do we compete with that huh?

  • ||

    Nationalist troll is nationalist.

  • ||

    Yeah no shit.Sorry If I would like to be able to keep my company going in THIS fucking country and giving jobs to my community.

    Are you just fucking insane?I hope you are really really rich because your retartded ideas lead to slavery.

  • ||

    Obvious troll is obvious.

  • ||

    So libertarian genius's how do we compete with that huh?

    No answer huh?
    Figures.

    Sitting around in a pirates costume watching porn and complaining how big bad gubermunt is taking your trust fund money is a pathetic hobby not a lifestyle.Mommy never taught you that?

  • ||

    Speaking only for myself, I only wear my pirate costume when my dom outfit is dirty.

  • ||

    So libertarian genius's how do we compete with that huh?

    No answer huh?
    Figures.

    Sitting around in a pirates costume watching porn and complaining how big bad gubermunt is taking your trust fund money is a pathetic hobby not a lifestyle.Mommy never taught you that?

  • ||

    frog in a pot|9.23.10 @ 10:13PM|#
    "...giving jobs..."
    Yep, it takes a true brain-dead to assume that jobs are "given".
    Were your born with that mental deficiency, or did it take a long study of lefty hogwash to get that stupid?

  • ||

    Creating jobs is giving jobs...yeah fuckhead.You might try it sometime.

  • ||

    giving jobs is something you appear to have knowledge of

  • ||

    Sorry If I would like to be able to keep my company going in THIS fucking country and giving jobs to my community.

    Yeah, the buggy whip makers felt the same way. If you can't take the competition, then do something else.

  • ||

    Have video games guilt into the glass

  • ||

    Great idea..for CHINA.

  • ||

    Uh, you have some real problem with *CHINA* or the Chinese? Or are you just a simple minded asshole?

  • ||

    Well since Im married to someone of chinese decent I dont have a problem with them.Now China?...Yeah I do have a problem with their slave wage abusive treatment of workers...who are throwing themselves off of building by the way...thinking we might care.Funny huh?

    And they let companies dump and poison their own people?

    Nothing wrong with a totalitarian communist country if your a sociopath.Talk about small minded.

  • SIV||

    Well, it is certainly no Somalia

  • ||

    Does not prove you are not a racist. Often people marry others they wish to subjugate. I knew a racist woman who thought blacks were inferior to her in almost every respect except she married a black guy. Why? There was a sexual chemistry there, and she thought she had the upper hand in the relationship. I have no doubt that this reflected in your marriage froggy.

  • Shannon Love||

    The problem of government subsidies is self-limiting. Governments don't have infinite money to fund dumping and since government action isn't part of the market, governments can in principle respond to it in order to protect the internal free-market. However, they usually screw it up so its best to not even try.

    The real reason that US manufacturing is in such peril is the incessant government interference in virtually every decision manufactures must make. Taxes, environmental regs, zoning and a blizzard of lawsuits form virtually every possible source, it take forever to get a factory built in the US. Compensation for workers is often trivial compared to all the problems associated with just getting things done in the US.

    The truth is that the left side of the political spectrum now views manufacturing as something evil and low class. They view it as something to be actively suppressed. When American Express is running ads about someone bragging they destroyed an irrigation dam, you know you've reached a tipping point in the culture.

    Compared to our major self-inflicted injuries, any actions by foreign governments are utterly trivial. We should concentrate on what we control instead of trying to spark trade wars.

  • ||

    Governments don't have infinite money ...

    Big Ben knows better

  • ||

    This isn't a libertarian topic; it's a business management topic. Anyway, here are some ideas:

    1) Build a better product and provide better customer service. Premium products sell. They are a niche, but they are a profitable niche. Business is all about connections, and positive customer experiences are the best connections you can make.

    2) Buy up their products at wholesale prices, and sell the products with a hefty markup to the general public. You could either introduce a line of glass below your premium line, or you could stop production and sell the imported glass exclusively. This is taking advantage of economics of scale to provide the consumer with affordable good.

    3) Wait it out. Really, this is going to work itself out; it's a house of cards. They can dump all the product they want on the market, but they are going to burn out when the price of glass drops below what their government can effectively sustain. Also, people are going to get tired of poor quality, and they will start buying better quality items.

  • ||

    I thought Ayn Rand's revenge was an RPG cliché.

  • ||

    Rands revenge?Its already here...

    FDA investigators inspected multiple facilities of Wright County Egg from August 12 through August 30, 2010. In the course of their investigation, officials found chicken manure reaching eight feet high, employees who did not wear or change protective clothing when moving from one laying house to another, and many live mice throughout the facilities. Inspectors also observed wild birds sitting near and flying over grain bins that contained chicken feed. In total, six samples taken from the facilities and feed supply tested positive for Salmonella Enteritidis.

    FDA also inspected facilities of Hillandale Farms of Iowa. During inspections from August 19 through August 26, 2010, investigators found numerous unsealed rodent holes, liquid manure "streaming" from a crack in the manure pit, and uncaged hens tracking manure throughout the laying facilities. FDA found Salmonella Enteritidis in a sample of spent water from an egg wash station.

    FDA investigators, he testified:

    found significant objectionable conditions observed at poultry houses, such as the presence of live and dead flies that were too numerous to count, as well as maggots at Wright County Egg and live rodents and structural damage that allowed rodents, birds, and potentially other animals to enter poultry houses at both companies.

    Currently, the FDA has "no ability to subpoena, the information they seek has to be given voluntarily, there is no obligation by the farms to report to the FDA even when they know there are food safety issues," Waxman charged. "This is unthinkable."

    Waxman's committee unanimously approved the Food Safety Enhancement Act, which was overwhelmingly passed by the full House. The bill, which remains stalled in the Senate, would give the FDA new, sharp teeth to enforce inspections and mandate recalls of contaminated foods, including fruits, vegetables, seafood, milk and eggs. (The Iowa egg recall was voluntary).

    Wright County Farms is based in Galt, Iowa. You couldn't make this up if you tried.

  • ||

    Properly cook your eggs and it's all moot.

  • ||

    I live in this candidate's district and I met and listened to her pitch, which was very general but included phrases like "helping small businesses succeed".

    I asked her point blank how she would go about helping entrepreneurs. Without batting an eyelash she launched into prepared remarks about the need for government to give money to entrepreneurs because banks are failing to do extend badly needed credit to them. She mentioned that she had drawn up a plan to facilitate just this thing.

    I asked her where the federal government would get the money to give to the businesses and she talked about the fact that the federal government has enormous reserves at its disposal to help the states. She would fight to make these funds more available to businesses in NY.

    I mentioned that local businesses succeed or fail based on meeting the needs of people like her and me, not waiting for checks from the feds. I mentioned that entrepreneurial success has nothing to do with government grants. I mentioned the deficits and the national debt and said, the feds don't have the money to do this, nor do the feds have the authority by the way, nor do they have the expertise. But what you can do, I said, is say that you'll vote against the federal government's unsustainable spending sprees and vote to eliminate some taxes and lower others and to block government intervention in the economy in general.

    Her response was a "will you vote for me if I say things that acknowledge what you've said without actually responding affirmatively to any of it" mess.

    This was a very silly article about a young woman who is articulate and has an interesting back story and stands for absolutely nothing new in American politics.

  • ||

    > she talked about the fact that the federal government has enormous reserves at its disposal

    I guess she didn't get the memo. The federal government is broke. In fact, it's further broke than any government has ever been in history.

    -jcr

  • B. Adams||

    Not sure if anybody else has already mentioned this, but check this sentence:
    "Notably, Saujani attraced supported..."

  • ||

    You're trying to tell me that a hedge fund lawyer and her yuppy friends understand what an innovative, free market looks like? And that they are fighting for it?

    Riiiiight.

    They'd run as fast as they could if they saw one.

    This article needs to be re-written. She suggested a little opening in the deranged narrative of the left, which is all she believes in, and she got hammered for it.

  • ||

    This article is nonsense. Perhaps the author should have spent a few minutes reviewing Saujani's web site:
    http://www.reshma2010.com/pages/issues

    Read through it and point out places where the candidate is anywhere near Ayn Rand. The candidate is basically a creative class statist.

    Excerpts:

    First, we need to help businesses identify and access attractive markets abroad with new financing options. Second, we should appoint City Economic Ambassadors in major global cities abroad to promote New York business.

    ...

    I propose increased subsidies to small businesses to help mitigate premium increases.

    ...

    I propose we create an SEC regulated clearinghouse for ratings to remove the conflict of interest and better protect investors.

    ...

    While the recent health care reform ended gender-based discrimination, I believe we need to immediately provide support and subsidies for single mothers who are struggling with health care costs incurred prior to the establishment of exchange plans.

    ...

    We must pass paid family leave immediately – not just to support our overstretched working families, but to drive our economic recovery. In fact, companies with family leave benefits have seen their value grow over twice as much compared to companies that do not. We also need new policies to promote both affordable on-site child care, flexible work arrangements, and training for mothers seeking to rejoin the workforce.

    ...

    We need to encourage talented women to become entrepreneurs, especially in areas like clean-tech, bio-tech and high-tech that will be critical to our global competitiveness in the future. I propose new programs to promote science and technology education for women, particularly in low-income communities, while providing more scholarships for graduate business and science programs and training in business development.

    ...

    I propose we set a national goal to stimulate a ten-fold increase the number of women who are Fortune 1000 CEOs by 2020.

    ...

    Statistics show that women reinvest 90 percent of their income back into their family, three times the rate for men. An extra year of secondary school alone can increase a woman’s lifetime wages by up to 25 percent. We need to promote more development and mentorship programs targeted to women.

    She's not just a statist but a leftist too.

  • ||

    But she's a cute urban hipster! I may be able to get her if I pretend losing by 50+% is a major accomplishment!

  • ||

    The term you're looking for is 'liberaltarian'. Those are liberals who've noticed that these people who are calling themselves 'libertarian' are getting treated like they're edgy--and possibly might even be the next 'hip'. Since liberals are morons, they've concluded that it's the use of the '-arian' suffix that's the cause of this(after all, wasn't there something about 'arian' being the best in the 30s? And the 30s are hip, right? right?).

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