The Heroes and Villains of New York City

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09/30/2009 4:00 AM |


John Sexton

As Thoreau, or possibly Charles Schwab, advised: “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you’ve imagined.” For almost a decade now, NYU has been livin’ the dream–their Unstoppable Hugging President’s dream, in which NYU is a visionary, transformative global research university for the new century, like a late-capitalist Harvard (we’re paraphrasing). This means, among other things, starting a satellite NYU in Abu Dhabi, eventually owning all property in Lower Manhattan, etc. More recently, in an effort to “maintain the University’s momentum” despite the recession, J-Sex has overseen cuts in student services, administrative hiring and raise freezes, and staff layoffs–while the Journalism Department announces the creation of six new Distinguished Writer-in-Residence positions, filled by big-name academic gets (momentum!). As Thoreau, or possibly Eric Tsang, also observed: “What thousands must die so that Caesar may become great.”

8 Comment

  • they just lost their lease, and need to find another….preferably in the immediate neighborhood, for not much money…

  • Mayor Bloomberg is in the picture but there isn’t anything written about him, how come?

  • His editing staff is still next to impeccable. I think you meant savvy.

  • In terms of heroes and villains, you have both in what’s going on with the 1-2-3 Community Space. You’ve written about the heroes, but there is also a villain, or rather villains. You can read about them on a blog set up to chronicle the eviction of 1-2-3 by money-grubbing landlords (I know, that’s redundant).

  • I think Bloomberg is on the cover as he’s referred to in the Reverend Billy editorial.

  • Thanks GOD this jackass is being called out. I’m glad to see the villains behind the villains called out.

  • Graydon Carter is a villain because time and age has given him a different perspective in life? Prepare author, for you too will in time (and with age) join the ranks of ‘villains’ everywhere. Unless you’re just so closed minded as to never change.

    Also, when does libertarianism == ‘giving up’. That’s just reductionism.

  • You list Bloomberg as a villain but his traffic doyenne, Sadik-Khan, is a hero. And Billy Talen, no matter how well intentioned, is a clown.