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‘A man who as mayor bought his suits off the rack at Bancroft for $299 grew addicted to luxury, ultimately purchasing six homes and 11 country club memberships.’

[His current legal disasters] reveal a corruption of character, triggered by a succession of moral compromises over the years undertaken to maintain the power and money that he’d grown accustomed to after Sept. 11... His political power has evaporated, and his riches have been almost exhausted — he’s been selling personalized video greetings for $325, and he dressed as a feathered jack-in-the-box for the Fox show “The Masked Singer” this spring.

I dunno. I mean, yes, for Giuliani the hoariest cautionary tale ever (Radix malorum est cupiditas) pertains; but UD has long felt that for Giuliani, Trump, Madoff, and other famous New York maniacs, some city-specific mental illness is also at play, as if the ultimate urban fever that is NYC’s speed, greed, hallucinatory arrogance, Kafkaesque removal from common grounded life — propels these people so far from anything real that they actually become clinically nuts. I think that in his novel Cosmopolis DeLillo was trying to get at this… Just as, from his title on, Tom Wolfe tried the same thing years earlier in Bonfire of the Vanities... Something about the ultimate urban cauldron that sets a soul on fire…

Margaret Soltan, September 11, 2022 7:48AM
Posted in: snapshots from new york

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