This wasn't the kind of success in the war on gangs that Pat McCrory had in mind. In the end, voters were in no mood to reward destructive behavior, and they took it out on McCrory and his own fellow gang members, who suffered a serious whacking.
Let me explain. The Charlotte mayor, defeated last week in the gubernatorial race by Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue, has presented himself for years as a leader in the fight against criminal gangs. He had, in fact, hoped to make that fight a centerpiece of his run for the governor's office, until Democrats in the General Assembly pulled the rug from under him by passing their own gang-zapping laws first. In the past, McCrory has even tried to link Uptown "cruisers" with criminal gangs, admonishing "our youth, primarily African-American, [who] are imitating and/or participating in a gangster type of dress, attitude, behavior and action."
We pointed out at the time that McCrory was, in fact, a member of the "worst of all gangs," i.e., Republican politicians, known as the Dubya-McCrory Gang, or The DubMacs. These DubMacs have gained notoriety during the past eight years for their destructive habits and deceitfulness, and as a result, voters capped them on Election Day.
DubMacs, like other gang members, can be identified by their clothing. When they're "working," they sport a "corporate robot" look: Brooks Brothers suits, flag lapel pins, button-down or forward point shirt collars, red ties and wingtips. In more casual moods, DubMacs favor khaki trousers, Lacoste polo shirts, with either tassel loafers or Docksiders (sockless, of course -- reports have come in of DubMacs in cooler climes being "whacked" for wearing socks with gang members' favorite loafers).
It wasn't just Pat "MiniMac" McCrory (in deference to "BigMac," Sen. John McCain) who was a victim of the electorate's anti-gang mood. Nationally, BigMac himself, and his partner "IceDoll" Palin, were left bleeding on an angry D.C. curb, while a score of DubMac "reps" and at least six of their "senators" also wound up on the political cooling board. In North Carolina, the casualties included U.S. Sen. Liddy "SeniorBarbie" Dole, who ticked off too many people by staying away from her home turf too often. Locally, all three DubMac candidates for County Commission were whacked, including incumbent Dan "Token" Ramirez -- which leaves the Commission with only three surviving DubMacs: Bill "UGotE-mail" James, Dan "GayBash" Bishop and Karen "'HoodSchools" Bentley.
Voters' anti-DubMacs mood was born in disappointment and anger over the gang's destructive actions during the past eight years. Locally, the DubMacs gave their partners, known as DevelopersInc, free rein to strip the land and fill up every available space with ugly suburban housing and strip malls. The results were growing sprawl, traffic congestion, foreclosures by the hundreds and a wrecked ecology. Local DubMacs jumped on the Homeland Security gravy train but sat by while the federal government did next to nothing to improve security at nearby nuclear plants. Results? McGuire and Catawba nuclear plants are still vulnerable to attacks by airplanes, while the DubMacs tried to fool citizens into thinking the county's evacuation plans might actually work. The gang also couldn't have been bothered to pass a living wage law for city employees, nor provide adequate funding for schools. Results? Poorly paid workers delivering mediocre services, and miserable test scores.
Nationally, voters reacted to the DubMacs' disastrous record of civic violence: gutting banking regulations, resulting in the worst economic mess since the Great Depression; oil companies writing energy legislation; shredded environmental regulations; a head-in-the-sand attitude toward climate change; a great city ruined by the botched response to Hurricane Katrina; ignoring warnings of al Qaeda attacks; launching half-assed responses to the 9/11 attacks that have left a nation that had nothing to do with the attacks in ruins, while letting the terrorists' leaders escape, shattering U.S. armed forces' readiness, and leaving America as vulnerable to attack as it was on 9/11. And don't get me started on the wiretaps, torture, suspension of habeas corpus, not to mention the pandering to religious fundamentalists' archaic views, and generally wiping their butts with the U.S. Constitution.
So what happens to the new, thinned out DubMacs? It looks as if a civil war among the gang's survivors has started, to culminate in January when they'll pick a new Big Boy, or in gangspeak, "head of the RNC." Candidates mentioned so far are BigMac campaign jefe Steve "Drinking40s" Schmidt, Mitt "$$$" Romney, Larry "WideStance" Craig, or Todd "IceHunk" Palin.
And how about MiniMac, aka McCrory? The Charlotte mayor may seem screwed now -- a statewide loser, no forthcoming federal post appointment, a wife who reportedly wants out of the political life, and a DubMac survivor, Sue "MexKilla" Myrick, whose refusal to quit her "rep" position leaves McCrory without a congressional seat to run for. But he'll no doubt land on his feet. After all, this is a man who has had much of his adult life subsidized by a Duke Energy pseudo-job. After his years of slavish support for corporate interests, all the ring-kissing, brown-nosing and bendovers for big businesses, McCrory won't have a hard time finding someone to reward his devotion. I'm just waiting to see if the city's former Big Dawg will slink back into Council meetings with his tail between his legs.