I got a glimpse of the future during a recent visit to Seattle to hawk my new book. People were all in a tizzy there, because a majority of Washington state voters in November, as well as voting for Obama, had approved full legality for the wacky weed, marijuana. Now officials and politicians were figuring out what that meant. Mayor Mike McGinn was leading the way, welcoming the transition rather than seeking to stop it. He was meeting with pot growers, and putting together a to-do list. And to tell you the truth, McGinn, who arose out of the environmental and neighborhood activism side of things, and has a nice grin and a scruffy beard, looks like he just might have inhaled a few times himself over the years.
In last Sunday’s New York Times, veteran Timesman Sam Roberts wrote a nice review of my new book, The Surprising Design of Market Economies, in his “Bookshelf” column in the Metropolitan Section. Here’s the link, but I’ll post the whole thing here, since it was short.
Bookshelf Column, Excerpt
By Sam Roberts
Feb 22, 2013
Despite its dry title, “The Surprising Design of Market Economies” (University of Texas Press, $25), by Alex Marshall, offers keen insights into urban planning, public works and even the history of New York’s onetime ambivalence toward a professional police force. Mr. Marshall is a senior fellow at the Regional Plan Association, a nonprofit planning agency for the New York City metropolitan area, and many of his arguments turn on hometown examples.
I don’t know who “hismlane” is, but he did a great job summarizing my book on the Daily Kos. He not only summarized each chapter, but in his overview he got the crucial distinction that I’m making a distinction between “regulating” markets, and “designing” them. By getting down into the core architecture of our markets, I shift the playing field. Check it out here.