Books: Gang Rape of a City

THE ABUSE OF POWER: THE PERMANENT GOVERNMENT AND THE FALL OF NEW YORK

by JACK NEWFIELD and PAUL DU BRUL

368 pages. Viking. $12.50.

In the movie Network, a manic anchorman exhorts his listeners to proclaim through open windows that they won't take abuse any more. In real journalism, Jack Newfield screams a similar demand, but he wants his audience to protest in closed voting booths. Rage rather than dementia drives this full-time muckraker—one reason why his novelty value has survived six books and hundreds of articles; few can match the fresh indignation he brings to old scams.

The question of who maimed...

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