1205 The Perfect Candidate
Kind of slips off the tongue easily, right?
The Perfect Candidate.
If he wins (shudder) he will have saved us the time it usually takes after inauguration day to discover why we shouldn’t have voted for him. That’s pretty well known now.
More on that in a moment, but first let’s look at some of the earlier men who have served and their claims to fame and infamy:
Jimmy Walker had some legal problems and a cozy relationship with prohibition-era speakeasies. He resigned a year before his term was up.
His successor, John O’Brien finished Walker’s final year in office by doing nothing without checking first with the Tammany Hall leadership.
Fiorello LaGuardia is the patron saint of New York City politics, but if truth be told, he didn’t have many friends left when he left City Hall.
Bill O’Dwyer managed to slip out of office and into an ambassadorship before he was indicted for anything.
Vincent Impellitteri raised the subway fare from a dime to 15 cents and taught us all to love tokens.
Robert Wagner was a tool of the Democratic machine for most of his career but then had the nerve to run as a “reformer.”
John Lindsay cleared the way for mayors to look like Ken Dolls and coined the unfortunate phrase “Fun City,” which is almost as obnoxious as the earlier “Big Apple.” (You can be sure anyone who uses that phrase is not a native of the city.)
Abe Beame, accountant, couldn’t get a handle on the balance sheet.
Ed Koch ran into that third term curse, though it was his henchpersons who caused or landed in trouble. (Regular readers know I was friends with Koch for many years and rarely criticized him -- and then only to his face, not his back.)
David Dinkins was the mayor of tennis matches and wardrobe.
Rudolph Giuliani killed the squeegee industry and left office a hero after 9/11 … just before which he couldn’t have gotten elected dogcatcher.
Mike Bloomberg accomplished much but history will remember him for banning both Big Gulps and saloon smoking... and for the brilliant on the job training he got in a big snowstorm.
Now comes the aptly named Anthony Weiner of the photogenic private parts who sends sexts to women he doesn’t know and was all but forced out of congress because of it.
The Anthony “Tony Dicks” Weiner scrapbook is swelling like... um... well, it’s getting thicker by the day.
They guy’s a schlemiel. Whatever good he ever did or can do in the future has or will have an asterisk in the record books.
How can you take this guy seriously? His on-line antics show him as irresponsible, immature and the picture of bad judgment. That he reminds us of a young Woody Allen without glasses and not intentionally funny doesn’t help either. These aren’t terrible crimes. In fact, they’re not crimes at all. But what would it say of us if he won the nomination and the election?
The rest of the candidates in both major parties are no great shakes either. While Bloomberg is a hard act to follow, he’s not an impossible act to follow.
Fiorello and Ed: where are you when we need you? Probably grave spinning.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
Please address comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
© WJR 2013