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A long time back, Forbes Magazine gave up on being a second-tier Fortune or Business Week and settled on becoming the Fox News of business reporting. Indeed, after taking over the magazine from his far more talented and ebullient father Malcolm, presidential wannabe Steve Forbes turned a publication once known for scrappy reporting into the kind of journalism melding news with alternative reality right-wing wish fulfillment that gave the magazine's motto "Capitalist Tool" a whole new and not entirely flattering meaning.
And so, in the tradition of David Letterman, just a lot less entertaining, the "List" has become a Forbes staple. Over time, you can choose from Top 10 Ski Resorts in the U.S., the 10 Best Cities for Newlyweds, and Top Ten Richest Rappers, Surely, the Top Ten Trophy Wife Bikinis can't be far behind. And now they've done it again. With America's Most Miserable, they've gotten $100 million dollars worth of press and air time, not to mention social media buzz, by rubbing people's noses in their own shortcomings and getting high on the resulting outrage.
If it doesn't actually kill you, Chicago will break your heart. Chicago will also make you feel more fully alive than you ever imagined possible.
I am riding on a limited express, one of the crack trains
of the nation.
Hurtling across the prairie into blue haze and dark air
go fifteen all-steel coaches holding a thousand people.
(All the coaches shall be scrap and rust and all the men
and women laughing in the diners and sleepers shall
pass to ashes.)
I ask a man in the smoker where he is going and he
Carl Sandburg, Limited