How the mighty have fallen

The Washington Post reports that General Growth Properties, a major shopping mall developer, and owner of such landmark properties a Water Tower Place in Chicago and Tyson's Corner Mall outside DC, is having difficulty meeting its financial obligations, and may go bust.

AT reported over three years ago on General Growth's efforts to escape property tax burdens, noting at the time that NYT pundit Thomas Friedman married into the founding Bucksbaum family.

Of course, he is a best-selling author and public speaker in his own right, so he will never go hungry or experience anything ordinary Americans would consider financial distress.

His in-laws have our sympathy now, as do the members of the Sulzberger family, who control his employer. We brook no schadenfreude here.

Both families formerly billionaires; now probably not so much. That has got to be tough. Hang in there!

Cliff Thier adds:

I guess it's his wallet that's flatter now. He'll just have to bump into some tech executive from Bangalore at an airport in London on his way to Cape Town to explain it all to him.

"Tom, your wallet isn't the wallet you used to know. It's so much more now. You can't use the old methods of looking at a wallet anymore. You know the leather was cured in Ireland, but the cow (originally from Poland) was killed in Bhutan . . . "