On account of some neuroses*, I had put off reading Gabriel Sherman’s New York
cover story, “The Emasculation of Wall Street”
—also maybe on account of that headline, from which not much good can follow. (See the cover art, if the hed’s too subtle. Literally, it is a photo of a guy grabbing his crotch and grimacing.) But the article—I caved—is edifying if you read it alongside Chris Lehmann’s “Dick Joke,”
in which the author dismantles what seems to be Sherman’s point: Wall Street bankers feel threatened (“castrated,” even) by the spectral presence of greater regulation and by, yup, Occupy Wall Street (“which does appear to have rattled a lot of nerves”). You don’t have to get too far into the New York
piece to be struck by its tone deafness—one thing that Sherman establishes early on is that, on Wall Street, “there’s a growing sense that the money that was being made during the Bush boom won’t be back.” Can you imagine?
*Namely a subscription to the print edition, which seems so irrelevant by Thursday, when it arrives in the mail, if you’ve read the whole magazine on Monday.