Oh, please! Enough of this twaddle about what a fine publisher Big Bill Regardie is (“Power Down,” 3/23). If ever a magazine deserved to die, it was Regardie’s. The original ’80s Regardie’s was run like a summer camp in the gulag: Employees received good pay, free catered lunches, and free marijuana. (The cocaine was doled out on a more limited basis.) They also got 100-hour work weeks, verbal harassment, offensive humor, and occasional physical outbursts.
The whole enterprise exemplified the worst excesses of the ’80s, including too much money and not enough taste. Regardie’s catered to the martini-lunch crowd and ran stories that were the equivalent of a Palm steak: big, meaty, undercooked, and ultimately indigestible. Any good journalism that inadvertently did appear was the work of the various editors, not the buffoonish publisher, who primarily used the magazine as an attempt to impress people more important than he was. (That’s why the circulation was so large.)
Regardie’s Power, the 2000 version, died because (a) it had a stupid business model, and (b) it was caught in a time warp. Somebody tell Craig Copetas to stop sucking up, and tell Bill Regardie that the ’80s are over.