The [Wednesday] Papers
Once again, the enemy of those of us with both brains and heart has been quantified: 321,773 Chicagoans (presumably) voted Rahm Emanuel into the mayor's office on Tuesday.
Factor in the 59 percent of the city who didn't bother to vote and you can see what we're up against.
Miguel del Valle, easily the most honest and earnest candidate with the most substance and the most passion for the city's neighborhoods and the people who live in them, garnered votes from just 54,081 people - about the size of one city ward.
And half of those voters are probably idiots.
Democracy is hard, folks.
"The city wanted a strongman and it got one," John Kass writes.
But here's the funny thing about strongmen: They are weak. They are driven by their insecurities. They are driven by their vanity. They are driven by their psychological issues. They are often mentally ill. They are driven by sick ambition. They are bullies.
Chicago has just voted to continue the bullying.
Oh, maybe it's not "us" who want to be bullied, some might say. It's "them" we want bullied. The city council. City workers. Competitors like, um, Detroit. Lazy retrogrades. The South Side. The West Side. Bully them like jocks bullying the weirdos.
But we're not back in high school here in Chicago; we're in grade school.
Our notions of "toughness" are perverted. Was there any man "tougher" in the race than this one?
It's easy to be cynical. It's easy to go along to get along. It's easy to look the other way. It's easy to be selfish; easy to hook up with the established order and ride the gravy train.
What's hard in this life is opposing cynicism, thinking for one's self, living by an ethical code and enduring the hardships and sacrifices that result.
Rahm Emanuel has done none of those things, yet his pampered upbringing and lifestyle afforded him the most, best and easiest chances to do so.
When he left politics for 18 months he didn't build housing for the poor or work in a soup kitchen or teach in an inner city school; he worked as an investment banker against the interests of everyone but a tiny number of already rich patrons and became wealthier than the vast majority of Americans in the process.
Do you think he gives a fuck about you and your problems?
He's as much as said he doesn't throughout his career, whether condemning progressives, union members, grassroots politicians or anyone else who has dared to challenge his dark realpolitik.
The difference between Rahm and Richard M. Daley is that Daley really probably doesn't know any better. Rahm does. And so do many of his supporters, be it Mike Quigley, Forrest Claypool, David Hoffman or any of the other abundant fakers in this town.
Now the loyal opposition can either sit back and take it or start building for 2015 because it's gonna be a long four years, and four years is enough.
Spotted by Beachwood contributor Tim Willette:
7:00 p.m. CLTV - WGN News Election Special AMC - The Godfather
The Political Odds
Rahm Is Nuts
They Like To Rock
Bulls, Beer & Mystery Sex
Our New Mayor 1
Our New Mayor 2
Our New Mayor 3
Our New Mayor 4
Our New Mayor 5
The Beachwood Tip Line: Rahmbusters.
Posted on February 23, 2011
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