Monday, September 12, 2005

thanks to penn central transportation co. v. city of new york, i am having an identity crisis.

i always thought i believed in historic landmark ordinances...but the arguments in favour of them in that case just rang completely hollow to me. the supreme court just...didn't even question the idea that such ordinances fostered civic pride and tourism and business, and strengthened the economy of the city, and were useful for the education, pleasure and welfare of the citizens. yes, i know, i'm sure that every single new yorker who reads this will probably want to beat me with a lead pipe for even insinuating that i may be against the court decision that saved grand central station. i don't know if i'm per se against it or for it...but especially, in the middle of a city, where space is at such a premium, i don't know if it's such a good idea to trade off some sort of vague sense of public good that flows from having these "landmarks" or from having some "dramatic view", when the space could be used for more activity. i'm bothered that the majority didn't even question the city's rationale for having the historic landmark ordinances.

maybe it's just because i'm a brute...i'm not a history buff, i generally don't give a crap about a nice view. i like useful things, and this decision just kind of goes against my preference for useful things.

i don't know where in particular this rant is going. i think i'm just posting this because my reactions to this case are giving me a feeling that i'm a Bad Liberal. i don't have an answer, i'm just bothered.

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