Andrew White

Andrew White is director of the New School's Center for New York
City Affairs.

Recent Articles

New York in the 1960s

The Ungovernable City: John Lindsay and His Struggle to Save New York By Vincent J. Cannato. Basic Books, 702 pages, $35.00 B efore the sun had risen on John Lindsay's first day as mayor of New York City, the Transport Workers Union went out on strike. It was the dead of winter in 1966, and the city's subways and buses would remain idle for 12 more days. Labor leaders thumbed their noses at the new mayor, and they weren't alone. Even Lindsay's immediate predecessor, Robert F. Wagner, snubbed Lindsay by leaving for a Mexican vacation instead of attending the inauguration. Yet the strike turned out to be more than the new administration could handle. In his negotiations with the TWU, Lindsay revealed not only a disregard for the conventions of collective bargaining, according to Vincent Cannato's Ungovernable City, but a fundamental lack of political skill. The mayor was unable to convert public disgust for the union's actions to his own advantage. Instead, he gave the TWU everything it...