Kwame Kilpatrick is like a moron muscle car owner who has terrorized his neighborhood with dangerous driving for six years, and now, after he's wrapped his precious car around a lamp post, he turns to his outraged neighbors and says, "I just sat down and had a very grown-up conversation with my twin boys about road safety."
Bully for them.
Kwame "apologized" to Detroit this evening. It was a rank pastiche of velour rhetoric pulled from the outhouses of self-help, slick PR consultants and corporate executive contrition. It was the sort of apology that left an odor in the room of everyone watching.
After listening to what Kwame had to say, a few things became very clear:
- Kwame has no business being mayor of any city -- no business being dog catcher in the furthest flung of communities;
- He clearly sees a few more dimes can be wrung out of Detroit, so he won't resign;
- It took an excruciatingly embarrassing scandal to prod him into spending time with his family;
- He needs women to bail him out of trouble -- Christine Beatty whose resignation satisfied the public bloodlust for a firing; tonight, his wife, Carlita joined him on television;
- He has no idea why the public is actually angry with him.
My concern, watching his "apology", was not how much pain his own hubris, stupidity and machismo has caused him and his family, I care about the near $9 million dollars his hubris, stupidity and sleaziness has cost an impoverished city. I care about the business his hubris, stupidity and sleazy machismo is frightening away and out of the city of Detroit.
Of course, Kwame had the gall to refer to himself as a "public servant." Right -- in the same way Donald Trump is a "servant" at Trump Tower.
No, a few coins remain in the cash register that is Detroit and Kwame is going to stick around until he's pocketed every last one.
The most obscene aspect of Kwame's televised "apology" was the inclusion of his wife. Lord knows Carlita Kilpatrick has paid her dues as Kwame's wife, and she may well have appeared at his side by her own volition, but it was ugly and surreal hearing her take on this matter. Her inclusion succeeded only in muddying the true issue -- the goddamned money Kwame has mishandled, mismanaged and misappropriated. I hope the press does stop hounding Carlita and refrains from filming the Kilpatrick children.
Amid the numerous irrelevancies volleyed about during the mayor's address, I will, however, heed one request Kwame made: I will blame him, and him solely, for the avoidable, irresponsible shitstorm that has enveloped the city of Detroit for the past week. Among the wretched wrecks of human beings who become politicians, Kwame is at the bottom of the barrel of spoiled souls. Kwame Kilpatrick is deluded, corrupt and contaminated. For these reasons, I'm actually glad he will remain in office, so that he will remain a target of community pundits for as long as possible -- the distraction of a new mayor won't queer the trajectory of bile and recriminations that still must be heaped on Kwame.
Kwame Kilpatrick is a wreck, an embarrassment, an illiterate, unimaginative adulterer and luckily the stocks of his hubris will keep him directly in the line of fire of the city's rightful enmity. He is a failed man. And there remains for us to learn more about Carmen Slowski.