By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Didn't I tell you that if you let white men in suits run everything, we'd all get screwed--literally and figuratively?
Now look what a mess we're in. Fighting, fear of nuclear destruction, a growing dictatorship--and that's just in City Hall. Can you believe we used to only be afraid of muggers?
After the attack on cabbies, vendors, and disabled mothers, the latest macho move out of City Hall is the mayor's plan to build a bunker to protect himself and 30 of his chosen people from bombs, germ warfare, and hurricanes. They've even made it clear that the mayor won't give preference to his own family in the 30-bed shelter. Sure, leave Andrew out to terrorize the rest of us! (Of course, if the choice is death by nuclear holocaust or living with the mayor and his not very merry band of men in a confined space, death by meltdown might be less painful.)
The skybox for disasters, as my NY1 debate mate Mark Simone calls it, is probably a day late and a dollar short anyway. If Rudy's war against the proletariat is any sign, and I hate to be the bearer of bad news, the City Hall water supply may have already been hit--with a dangerous dose of testosterone. I mean, who--besides George Steinbrenner--acts this way? OK--I'll give you Leona Helmsley, but nobody's ever accused her of lacking in testosterone, either.
And the testosterone is running wild. Has no one mentioned that crushing the little guy hasn't been a popular political move since Louis XVI? Probably not. Who's got the nerve to disagree with Rudy? These days he's got more toadies around him than the Frog Prince.
The mayor needs a woman. No, not like that. We've already been through that. Like this: as a top deputy mayor. There haven't been so few women in the mayoral cabinet--kitchen and regular--since Pilate ruled Judea. And the effects of this men's club mentality are beginning to wear really thin.
Other than communications director Christyne Lategano, there really doesn't seem to be a woman who's got the mayor's ear. Sure, Fran Reiter used to be deputy mayor, but she was shifted over to a nonprofit, where girls belong. Ninfa Segarra is still dep mayor, but when was the last time you heard her name? Taxi & Limos is headed by a woman now, but it's never been a seat at the right hand of God.
There are too many men smoking too many cigars in backrooms these days. (Yes, I know the mayor's said that banning smoking was a "no-brainer," but he's been spotted at the Cooper's Classic Cigar Bar more often than the Tiparillo delivery man.)
Take lead henchman Randy Mastro. The man speaks in terms of battlegrounds and war. But who are they fighting? Us? The City Council? Both. This administration's beginning to feel like a bad husband, the one who made you feel safe--until he turned on you.
And when Mastro says, "Don't expect a slow summer," he's not referring to civil unrest, he's referring to civil serviceunrest--the administration's battle with the City Council. All this male posturing has now got the city in a huge stalemate. Peter Vallone won't budge. The mayor won't budge. And it's really about who's carrying the biggest Freudian bat. The whole City Charter could get changed--including eliminating the office of public advocate--allegedly because of Yankee Stadium! Do you know how crazy this is?
Another Rudy insider was quoted as saying: "We're going to the mattresses." Oh please. This isn't The Godfather, they aren't the Corleones, and the rest of us aren't the Tataglias.
Boys! Boys! Stop fighting, and put your bats away. Go take some Viagra or something. And don't call us in the morning.