Entries by Ross Barkan

What Tom Wolfe’s World Teaches Us About Donald Trump

Tom Wolfe wasn’t for everyone. The vanilla bespoke suits, the manic, high-wire prose, the love affair with the exclamation mark — they were turn-ons or turn-offs and you knew which camp you fell into by the end of paragraph one. The vaunted journalist and novelist, who died Monday at 88, will be remembered for books and essays […]

Corruption Is Destroying New York State

Zephyr Teachout, a 2014 candidate for governor, with Joe Percoco and Gov. Andrew Cuomo. (Screengrab: NY True) The news today that Joe Percoco — a man who was like a brother to Gov. Andrew Cuomo — was convicted of collecting cash bribes is another embarrassment for New York and our democracy, or what passes for one here. Corruption means waste, […]

Bigotry and Politics

How does a politician represent people? How does a single individual with a single upbringing and worldview entirely influenced by a particular culture, class, religion or race seek to speak for, stand up for, or listen to everyone? It’s not a simple task. It’s especially a challenge for a politician who hasn’t endured the discrimination, […]

Who Is Fit to Hold Office?

I have lived in Bay Ridge for almost my entire life. I’ve walked in Ragamuffin Parades, pitched in the 68th Precinct little league (team Gold), and spent many an afternoon and night biking this lovely neighborhood, winding down from the promenade to Shore Road and up 3rd, 4th, and 5th Avenues, taking in the place […]

Why I’m Protesting the MTA Tomorrow

I’ve covered a lot of protests in my life and taken part in my share of actions — I traveled to D.C. for an anti-Iraq War protest, once upon a time — but tomorrow, I’ll be attending a protest in a new capacity: not as a journalist or bystander, but as a candidate for State Senate. The MTA is […]