October 3, 2005

All the Politics That's Fit to Grow

The Times Magazine ran a really incredible essay yesterday that outlines New York's central position in the growth of multiple strands of American politics--liberal and conservative.

Having only been to NY once (I know, I know), it's difficult for me to really relate to many of the author's observations of NY's history and character, but the historical analysis of the roots of political movements is very astute and makes a lot of sense.
New York is [...] historically, the fertile soil from which some of the richest ideas and policies have been harvested, ideas and policies that have defined the relationship between the American people and their government.

Basically, the point is that NY is big and diverse (which we already knew), but its specific history (which depends on its bigness and its diversity) has given America some rather unobvious legacies.


  1. Anonymous1:25 AM

    New York is pretty famously a lab for many of the more interesting political ideas of the last 100 years, such as the TR and FDR forms of progressivism and government responsibility. Of course, there is also the legacy of developing significant American leaders and political visionaries including Hamilton and Giuliani (whatever you want to say about him, his crime reduction and police management style was nothing short of visionary). Many of the laws determining commerce and trade begin on Wall Street, while much international politics is debated in the UN.
    I'm sorry, but all this seems rather elementary. The political legacy of New York is pretty apparant to anyone who has passed high school history. I mean, you read the NY Times Magazine and the author anticipates you have a general concept of these things...

  2. wow. ok. i was just pointing out an interesting article. didn't realize that it was so "elementary."
    I think the point was that, we all know the history behind events like the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire and people like Boss Tweed, but maybe not really the specific effects and the specific forms those things may have taken.
    I can't imagine it's so elementary if there's an entire essay devoted to it in the NYT Magazine.