'It is not a business to attract men of good feelings. . . .' So wrote journalist David Blaustein in 1904, when he set out to describe New York City landlords of his day. Blaustein's attention was drawn to what he called 'cockroach landlords,' small businessmen who leased entire buildings from owners in return for the right to collect rents— a pyramid scheme of sorts. Blaustein concluded that 'the tenant at the bottom of the heap pays for it all.' The 'cockroach' 'scheme is long gone, and while Blaustein's severe indictment is 95 years old, his conclusion arguably holds true today. Blaustein's is one of many views presented in a just-published book on the history of New... More >>>