I am off to the first ever Heterodox Academy meeting in New York which almost overlaps with the meeting of the American History of Economics Society meeting which is also in New York. When I’m in New York I always go here, which I like even more now that I understand the entrepreneurial vision of its owner. She must be the last of her kind among the Democrats.
New York City’s Landmarks Preservation Committee (LPC) just wouldn’t take no for an answer. The group has conferred landmark status on the 119-year-old building at 826 Broadway, which has housed The Strand Bookstore since 1956. The owners of The Strandbought the building in the late 1990s and the third-generation owner of the store, Nancy Bass Wyden, opposed the action, telling Reason earlier this year:
The Strand is not going anywhere. There’s no need to protect it. Our family’s been a great steward of the building. Landmarking would add another component of government. You add bureaucracy, you add committees, you add people having opinions about what we should do inside the store as well as outside the store. And that does not allow me the flexibility to change with the retail book environment and to serve our customers.
Bass Wyden (who is married to Sen. Ron Wyden, the Democrat from Oregon) presented 11,000 signatures to the LPC in hopes of dissuading landmark status. Such popular support for what is generally considered New York’s best bookstore cut no mustard.
Being on the left is merely a vanity project. How what they do affects everyone else hardly matters at all, to them.