The Corner

The Edwardian Issue

Did anyone else read the NYT magazine this weekend? It was all about poverty and income inequality. Some articles were better than others, and I didn’t read them all, but the hilarious part wasn’t in the articles. It was in the ads. On page after page, the magazine hawked luxury condos starting in the 8 figures. Pictures of these glorious $10 million-plus pied-à-terres with 24-hour doormen, room service and Master of the Universe views of Manhattan were punctuated with ads for financial advisers and garish jewelry — and, oh yeah, essays on what to do about the poor. There was an almost Edwardian irony to the whole thing;  a magazine for the New Aristocrats discussing the poor and how they live with a mixture of dispassionate, almost academic,  bemusement and charity ball passion.

Scene at the Hamptons: 

“Honey, did you see this piece on how poor people live? It’s right next to the ad for those new condos at Gramercy Park. It’s just so terrible.” 

“Oh, I know. I think that modernist style is just so garish for that part of town.”

“Oh, no.  I meant the thing about poor people.”

“Ah, right. Yes, that broke my heart.” 

And, if you’re going to have a whole issue dedicated to Neo-Edwardian concern for the class-divide, who better to put on the cover than John Edwards?