With a new wartime consigliere installed at the White House there’ve been scads of references to a heretofore ignored species known as the New York douchebag, or, using the Linnaean system of taxonomic classification, Novo Yorkus lavandi calicis.
In the movies, Michael Corleone ousted Tom Hagen when the going got roughest and selected the Don, Vito Corleone, his daddy-o, to take over poor Tom’s job. This current administration’s updated intrigue goes like this: Sean Spicer (AKA Hagen) is out and it’s The Donald’s spiritual son, Ant’ny Scaramucci, who gets the job.
Anyway, you want to know all about crass, pathologically greedy, borderline sociopathic, barely civilized, aggressive-as-makos New Yorkers who’ve excelled in the financial world? Pick up Michael Lewis’s now-30-year-old book, Liar’s Club. Lewis limns specimens like Louie Ranieri to a tee. Lewis S. Ranieri was a superstar at the old Salomon Brothers investment banking outfit. He, essentially, invented the mortgage-backed securities scam and, as such, is one of the primary villains in the worldwide economic collapse of 2007-08.
Louie and his acolytes tried to make Patton, Napoleon, and Johnny “Wad” Holmes look like Francis of Assisi. They fought tooth and nail to outwork, outearn, outdrink, outfuck…, hell, outeverything each other to a pathological degree. An example: Every Friday, they’d order lunch from some nearby joint. Each was so desperate to prove to his co-workers that he could eat more than they, that their lunch tabs amounted into the hundreds, even the thousands, of dollars. They gorged themselves to the point of emesis just so they could say they ate more than the other guys.
Both Li’l Duce and The Mooch are, indeed, Big Apple-ers from birth. Millions of Big Apple-ers are cringing at the thought.
The news today reads like the script from a bad Godfather rip-off, of which there were a scandalous many in the ’70s following the original’s success. None of them was any good. And neither is this administration.
Here’s the link to Thursday’s Big Talk featuring Bloomington legend and man about town, Spyridon Stratigos — Strats.
Next week, we do a live bit with Liz Watson, who has declared herself in on the 2018 race for Indiana’s 9th District US Congress seat.