The Corner

It’s Not Boring, It’s Life!

From a reader vexed with my declaration that I find shady land deals boring, regardless of party:

    Jonah, as someone who covered Las Vegas back in the 70s, when

Harry Reid was a small-time Lt. Governor, I have to defend the

reputation of illicit land deals against your ad hominem attack

on them as “boring.” Land deals are cool. Land deals are the

meat-and-potatoes of government corruption, sometimes illegal,

sometimes merely smelly.  Behind every crooked politician,

there’s a crooked land deal.  My first big story was the

existential essence of the land deal: a couple of the local pols

used insider advance knowledge to buy up land around a proposed

freeway interchange for resale under the name of a dummy company.

     The goverment builds on, buys, sells, or rezones land.  Said

land increases in value.   Pols, friends, relatives invariably

exploit the change. Harry’s part of a grand bipartisan tradition.

If more reporters were covering this stuff at City Hall,  there

would be many fewer bad guys of either party in Congress.