If I had the money and the time, I'd totally do this:
After 32 successful years in business, The Golden Notebook bookstore in Woodstock, New York is looking for a buyer. It is our priority to sell the business to a new owner and not leave Woodstock without a general independent bookstore. Therefore, if you know of anyone who may be interested in acquiring the business please pass this information along and direct inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Golden Notebook is housed in a building it owns right in the center of the town of Woodstock. It consists of a general bookstore with approximately 750 square feet of selling space and an upstairs stock room and office. Right next door is our children's bookstore in a rental space with approximately 600 square feet of selling space and access to a basement for storage. Both stores have garnered a well deserved reputation and have many established customers.
Thank you for being part of the The Golden Notebook family.
Ellen Shapiro and Barry Samuels, Owners
The Golden Notebook
29 Tinker St., Woodstock NY 12498
I don't have too many other details, but I'm told that the owner's reason for selling has more to do with health issues than any financial decision--although the recent health bill notwithstanding, is there really that great a difference between the two in current day America?
The need to keep a bookstore in independent hands is both great and real. There are few enough of them as it is. And the store is a joy to shop in; both new and used volumes are easy to find, and special orders were never a problem, at least not the few times I've asked about them. I believe the bit about having an established client base in place. I'd imagine that if there is anything in that neck of the woods where an independent book store might survive, it would be in Woodstock.
Over the last several weeks, there has been considerable discussion and
many questions raised about the constraints imposed by federal law on
ALA as a nonprofit charitable organization. On the other hand, there has
also been considerable interest in having a forum available where ALA
members could freely discuss political topics and the current election
in relation to library issues.
ALA, because of its 501(c)(3) tax exempt status, is expressly and
absolutely prohibited by the U.S. Internal Revenue Code from engaging in
"political speech." This means that ALA resources, including electronic
discussion lists, blogs and wikis, cannot be used for "the support of,
or opposition to, a candidate for public office". Political speech is
different from "lobbying," which seeks to influence legislation or
regulation (ALA continues to lobby aggressively for libraries within
The consequence of violating this legal prohibition is the revocation of
tax exempt status. No warnings are required, and the IRS has repeatedly
revoked the 501(c)(3) status of organizations considered in violation of
these regulations. The absolute prohibition on political speech by
associations like ALA is serious - and the "zero tolerance" enforcement
policy of the IRS has been upheld by the courts, including the Supreme
Court. We - ALA officers, staff and members - are required to comply
with these laws until such time as Congress changes them. In doing so,
we protect the interests of the Association and its members - present
and future - and preserve ALA's ability to advocate aggressively on
behalf of libraries and the public. Simply put, the loss of our
501(c)(3) status would have a catastrophic impact on the Association.
For more information about the IRS prohibition on political speech by
501(c)(3) tax exempt organizations, as well as links to additional
information, please see the Marginalia blog posting at
Some members have inquired about challenging this prohibition. Given
that the Supreme Court has upheld this IRS regulation, a legal challenge
would not be a wise use of ALA resources. Other members have pointed out
that there are exemptions for universities and that churches appear to
be granted more latitude by the IRS. Both of these statements are true,
but do not affect the rules for charitable organizations such as ALA.
Notwithstanding this prohibition, many ALA members have expressed an
interest in discussing the election and the candidates in relation to
library issues. While this discussion cannot legally occur within the
ALA 501(c)(3) structure, the 501(c)(6) ALA-Allied Professional
Association does open up new opportunities for such discussions. As a
501(c)(6), operating under different IRS rules, ALA-APA can legally
provide a forum for such discussions.
To this end, the ALA-APA Board has authorized the creation of an ALA-APA
Forum discussion list to discuss mutual issues of interest to librarians
and other library workers, including political issues and candidates.
This list is open to ALA members and others. To subscribe to the APA
Forum, go to:. http://lists.ala-apa.org/sympa/info/apaf
Questions have also been raised about the limitations placed upon
American Libraries and AL Direct. While stories that may be construed as
supporting or opposing any candidate for public office are prohibited by
the IRS as political speech, AL and AL Direct will continue to provide
factual information and breaking current news on library-related issues,
including those involving candidates for public office, as it occurs.
In closing, I would encourage you to distribute this information to any
and all ALA discussion lists and member forums. Also, if you have any
questions, please contact Karen Muller, the ALA Librarian, at
This past Friday beheld the start of the third National Conference over Media Reform in Memphis. Bill Moyers was one of the main speakers, and being Moyers, he let the media establishment have it point blank:
Veteran journalist Bill Moyers on Friday challenged 3,000 progressive activists and communicators to take back the telling of America’s story at the National Conference of Media Reform in Memphis. He put his finger squarely on the deep vein of discontent with the way mainstream media is ill-serving American democracy.
Moyers, who is president of the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy, went through a sordid litany of corporate media malfeasance, from the lackluster and largely non-skeptical reporting of the Bush administration’s launch of the war in Iraq to the lack of attention paid to a domestic landscape of increasing economic disparity and racial segregation. Virtually uncontrolled media consolidation over the past decade, he said, has meant a loss of independent journalism and created “more narrowness and homogenization in content and perspective, so that what we see on our couch is overwhelmingly the view from the top.”
It is in this environment that the Bush administration can, for example, can “turn the escalation of a failed war and call it a surge, as if it were a current of electricity through a wire instead of blood spurting from the ruptured veins of a soldier,” Moyers said.
On the domestic front, “the question of whether or not our economic system is truly just is off the table for investigation and discussion, so that alternative ideas, alternative critiques, alternative visions never get a hearing,” he said.
“It is clear what we have to do. We have to tell the story ourselves,” he said.
One thing I noticed much further down in the article (the last paragraph, in fact) was a reference to Sidney Lumet's Network, possibly one of the best movies ever made about the broadcast television industry:
The intense interest in this conference is a reflection of the thousands of Howard Beales on the left who are as mad as hell and are not going to take dumbed-down, homogenized, corporatized, power-subservient media any more.
Everyone remembers Howard Beale telling people to stick their heads out their windows and scream their ire at the world, possibly because that scene happens early in the movie. Nobody remembers that by the end of the film, Howard has become "the only prime time anchorman to ever have been killed over lousy ratings." So my meager advice to those who would defend the world from the main stream media might be this: the machine is plenty bigger than you, has no morals whatsoever and has an enormous head start. In other words, both strive for change and watch your back. Always.
Molly Ivins has a piece in today's Alternet.org on the issue of free speech (as in guaranteed by the 1st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution) and the growing use of the Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation (aka "SLAPP"). The idea behind the SLAPP is that a large (or merely well-funded) corporate entity can bring these suits against people who publicly disagree with them, with the intention of the SLAPPed party shutting up due to lackof money to successfully defend against the suit. Trouble is that it works more often than not especially in major David vs. Goliath situations.
So I wonder if these suits have ever been used against a library or librarian. It wouldn't take much, and it it's not that different from folks merely stealing the books they don't like out of libraries or resorting to political pressure to have books banned in libraries, schools, etc. Just wondering on this.