CITIES: How New York City Lurched to the Brink

It is hard to imagine that subways in New York City could be more congested, streets any bumpier, parks any scruffier, muggers in greater abundance, ambulances slower to respond or courts and prisons in more disarray. But all that and considerably more is likely to happen as New York comes to terms with its worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. After decades of living beyond its means, of spending as if there were no tomorrow, the city has accomplished what no one really thought possible: it has all but gone broke....

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